1,925 thoughts on “Open Thread – Weekend 14 May 2022”

  1. Dot, don’t be a fuckwit.
    Road reserves are measured in chain. Every road that I’ve seen is either three chain or ten chain.
    They’re commonly described as such. Directions in a pub may include that snippet.
    Don’t be an autistic outcast like JC. Really.


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  2. Geoffrey Blainey in the Oz

    Nice piece. It sounds like it could be back to the Korean war boom for Aussie farmers although I don’t know about the fertilizer situation.
    I shouldn’t post it, but I will this time as it’s so good.

    How Australian farmers may save tens of millions of lives

    Hardly any of us have noticed that our country – seen as a pariah at the Glasgow climate summit last year – has quietly emerged as one of the worthier nations of the world.

    The war in Ukraine is studded with shocks and surprises. The multitude of deaths, suffered especially by Russia, is much higher than was anticipated, and a global energy crisis is feared.

    Even food supplies in impoverished parts of the world are a potential casualty of this conflict.

    In Australia, hardly any of us have noticed that our country – seen as a pariah at the Glasgow climate summit last year – has quietly emerged as one of the worthier nations of the world. Australian children, who in primary school often are instructed that their country has so much of which to be ashamed, will have to be told that at present it is a global benefactor.
    Read Next

    The contrasting stories of farming and food production in Ukraine and Australia could teach us a lesson. Across Ukraine and the southwest corner of Russia is one of the world’s most extensive layers of that black soil the Russians call chernozem. Rich in decomposed plants, it is as fertile as a first-rate compost heap. Ukraine’s black soil occupies two-thirds of the arable land in a nation that has a higher proportion of arable land than all but two other countries on earth, Denmark and Bangladesh.

    Indeed, the plains in the eastern half of Ukraine resemble one colossal farm. To the west the nation’s terrain is hilly, with a narrow strip of mountains, but the tallest peaks are not even as high as those in our own Snowy Mountains.

    Ukraine’s 40 million inhabitants are entitled be proud of their farmers and fiercely indignant that their grain stores and soils are being wrecked in places by Russian soldiers. In contrast, Australia’s farmers have a very different set of achievements. Their country has the world’s largest area of soil with major deficiencies and is the custodian of huge areas of desert, yet this year it is helping to feed about 50 countries and tens of millions of the most malnourished people.
    Members of a demining team of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine prepare to destroy an unexploded missile remaining near the village of Hryhorivka. It’s planting season in Ukraine and in addition to a spiking need for fuel and fertiliser, demining teams are flooded with calls to destroy the unexploded missiles or mines in fields, which in some places have wounded or killed farmers.
    Members of a demining team of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine prepare to destroy an unexploded missile remaining near the village of Hryhorivka. It’s planting season in Ukraine and in addition to a spiking need for fuel and fertiliser, demining teams are flooded with calls to destroy the unexploded missiles or mines in fields, which in some places have wounded or killed farmers.

    To praise Australia is not to belittle Ukraine. In a normal year Ukrainian wheat, maize and barley feed a host of people in distant lands; half of its cereal exports are shipped to Asia.

    The damage to Ukraine’s diverse grain-belt with its wheat and corn and barley is causing increasing concern. Many farms are damaged severely; explosives and booby traps have been laid on the edge of some farmlands; and grain from last year’s harvest is pilfered from silos and trucked away by the invading Russians. Even the lumbering farm machinery, similar to the costly combine-harvesters in our wheatbelt, has been stolen by the invaders.

    The harvest, normally at its busiest in just a few months, will certainly be much lower than last year’s and there is no likelihood that the surplus usually set aside for export will even reach the crucial Black Sea ports.

    Mariupol, now a wreck of a city, is a wheat port as well as a hub of heavy industry. The biggest wheat port, Odesa, and various oil and wheat facilities and high-rise apartments have been hit by Russian missiles. Only as old as Sydney, this celebrated city with its terrace of 192 stone steps leading to the waterfront (I once tried and failed to count them) was the setting of a highlight in the history of cinema, the Battleship Potemkin mutiny.

    The Black Sea is easily blockaded. The damaged Russian warship that sensationally was sunk in mid-April while being towed to Odesa had been a blockader. If the war soon ends, the control of the Black Sea will become crucial. If Russian President Vladimir Putin is the victor he will totally command all the wheat ports of the Black Sea, but he will not thereby control the narrow and all-important strait near Gallipoli. Both sides of the strait are owned by Turkey. Almost certainly the US and west European powers can block the strait at the Mediterranean end if necessary.

    We must remember that the battles at Gallipoli in 1915 were fought close to that narrow entrance from the Mediterranean into the Black Sea.

    A major aim of the British, French and Anzac forces landing at Gallipoli was to seize and open up the narrow strait called the Dardanelles so Allied cargo ships could carry munitions, military equipment and essential supplies to Odesa and so onwards by railway to strengthen Russia’s huge but ill-equipped army fighting the German and Austro-Hungarian forces on the war’s eastern front.

    If there had been a victory at Gallipoli, those same ships could have carried as return cargo the wheat and barley from Ukraine and other Russian territories.
    A Ukrainian army officer inspects a grain warehouse shelled by Russian forces near the frontlines of Kherson Oblast in Novovorontsovka, Ukraine. Russia has been accused of targeting food storage sites in frontline areas and generally degrading Ukraine’s wheat production, potentially causing a global shortage.
    A Ukrainian army officer inspects a grain warehouse shelled by Russian forces near the frontlines of Kherson Oblast in Novovorontsovka, Ukraine. Russia has been accused of targeting food storage sites in frontline areas and generally degrading Ukraine’s wheat production, potentially causing a global shortage.

    During World War I, in London and Paris, Berlin and Vienna, a grave shortage of food – and the risk of rioting by hungry civilians – was widely feared. In 1917 the revolutions in Russia and in 1918 the military defeat of Germany both stemmed from a shortage of bread as well as from defeat in battles on land. We rightly praise John Monash for his victories against the German army on French soil in 1918, in the last months of the war; but the long blockade conducted by the British navy in the North Sea had already weakened German morale at home and in the trenches by inflicting hunger on millions of its people.

    Even today in numerous African and Middle East nations a shortage of bread is viewed as a potential cause of civil unrest. The price of bread was often high in the period 2007 to early 2012, and hunger possibly contributed to the Arab Spring and the wave of political unrest in North Africa.

    One fact rarely noticed is that three of the world’s five largest wheat importers in 2020 were Muslim nations. Egypt was the largest, followed by Indonesia and Turkey. A fourth nation, Nigeria, has recently become more a Muslim than a Christian nation.

    Over 27 million tons of grains are stuck in Ukraine and unable to leave the country due to infrastructure challenges…

    The other nation standing in the top five importers of wheat is China. Though it has revolutionised its agriculture since the famines of the early 1960s, it cannot feed every one of those hundreds of million inhabitants who prefer wheat to rice, and so it has to import a small percentage of the massive quantities of wheat that it mills into flour. If we turn to rice, a grain that is high in moisture and low in calories compared with wheat, China is also a leading producer and a minor exporter, though far behind India which, to its credit, has become the globe’s largest exporter of rice.

    China and India as hot spots of malnutrition have been replaced by Arab nations in a typical year. According to an authoritative report issued in June last year, one-quarter of Arab children under the age of five were defined as stunted.

    Egypt and its 101 million people – a larger population than any nation in the EU and still growing swiftly – now depend on foreign wheat. The country’s local output of grain always lags far behind the imports. In Cairo the government operates the ingenious Baladi subsidy scheme, which provides – largely from imported grain – cheap bread for more than half of the population.

    Ukraine and Russia in recent years have supplied most of the grain used by Egyptian flour mills and bakehouses. Here is an exceptional somersault in world history. Egypt’s Nile Valley was a major supplier of wheat to the Roman Empire in its heyday. In the past decade, however, millions of Egyptians would have starved to death without the frequent arrival of food ships, some of which come from Australia.

    The Middle East nation that depends most heavily on Australian grain is Yemen. One of the poorest nations in the world, its farms are noted more for their sheep and goats, asses and camels than their cereals, and its schools are notorious for the low attendance of girls. Yemen’s population, doubling every 20 or so years, has already passed Australia’s.

    Lying near the entrance to the Red Sea, its main maritime city, Aden, was once a port of call for nearly all migrant ships bound from Europe to Australia. Today ships arriving from Australia are loaded with grain and in some years Yemen has been the third largest export destination for Australian wheat, and often exceeding Indonesia.

    In the past two years especially, we have been a huge exporter of wheat to East Asia. In Indonesia, countless families who ate their daily bread or noodles made from wheat grown mainly in what is now the war zone in Ukraine now consume bread from Australian white-wheat flour.
    The past two years have been record-breaking for Australian wheat and barley and canola crops. Picture: Zoe Phillips

    In some months, Indonesia is the world’s largest importer of wheat, while The Philippines, Vietnam, South Korea, Japan and now China are also large importers of Australian wheat. Australia is one of the five or six main wheat and barley exporters in the world and a major power if a world food shortage should arise.

    A forthright warning has come from the UN official who heads the World Food Program. A former Republican governor of South Carolina, David Beasley informed the Security Council on March 30 of the possibility of the worst food crisis since World War II – a warning, however, that he did not substantiate. He glimpsed, if the dislocating war continued for many months, “a catastrophe on top of a catastrophe”. He has since repeated the warning.

    Much of Beasley’s gloom reflects the situation in Ukraine’s wheat belt where brave farmers were walking away from their crops to be volunteer soldiers. He called Ukraine “the bread basket of the world”. But Ukraine has never been the world’s largest grower and exporter of wheat. In a normal year its total production of wheat, though vital, is below that of the EU, China, India and Russia.

    Beasley was courageous in pointing to a flood of refugees that might arise in famished lands if the military crisis persisted. Though he did not elaborate, it is possible that tensions in the overpopulated nations on the southern and eastern shores of the Mediterranean might well propel a flow of refugees towards Spain, Italy and Greece.

    We know that since February, trains packed with Ukrainian refugees have been welcomed by Poland, Hungary and other neighbouring nations. But if the war continues, the famished refugees reaching Europe’s Mediterranean shores in overloaded boats are even less likely to be welcomed.

    In the past five years Italy has turned back 82,000 illegal migrants who made the short voyage from Libya to Sicily. Likewise Angela Merkel’s experiment of welcoming into Germany one million Middle Eastern refugees was so controversial that it is unlikely to be repeated.

    To Africa, Russia was the largest supplier of wheat in 2020. Then follow France, Ukraine and Canada; Australia also ships wheat. Though Africa’s host of small farmers produce in total more cereals than are imported, the incoming ships crammed with wheat are crucial in a crisis.

    In the total scheme of things, the food grains imported into Africa are far outweighed by the food that comes from other plants grown in the myriad African vil­lages. Likewise in Pakistan it is estimated that more than half of the nation’s wheat is consumed by the same family members who grow it. Of course they can’t eat it all because bags of grain have to be set aside as seed for the next season’s sowing.
    From Nigerian airlines to Malawi bakers, African countries are feeling the pain of Ukraine’s crisis as supply disruptions hike inflation and oil prices push up fuel costs.
    From Nigerian airlines to Malawi bakers, African countries are feeling the pain of Ukraine’s crisis as supply disruptions hike inflation and oil prices push up fuel costs.

    In this simple old-time world, if a harvest is poor, a government will try to import grain. As shipments from the Black Sea are highly unlikely, the Third World nations that urgently need wheat will pay dearly for it on the world market in the following months – even after a ceasefire or a fragile period of peace begins in eastern Europe.

    I detect one justification for optimism around the world. Despite the fear that climate change cannot yet be coped with, and despite the knowledge that the world’s population is soaring and thus leading to more emissions of carbon dioxide, one fact is rarely mentioned. The world’s population has increased by about 50 per cent since 1990 or since the end of the Cold War, but the world’s production of food has increased at a faster pace.

    In our nation, the gap in attitudes between city and countryside is wider than ever, and in a city-dominated election campaign the farms and their contribution to the economy are barely touched on. Yet we hardly hear the news that agriculture here – highly efficient and innovative by world standards – has just experienced two prolific harvests. Last summer in Western Australia and NSW the wheat harvest, for example, has been sensational.

    Thus the lives of tens of millions of adults and children on the far side of the equator will be saved or prolonged.

    The past two years have been record-breaking for Australian wheat and barley and canola crops, in aggregate. It is almost certain that no matching period in our history has been so productive. While the recent floods in northern NSW have been devastating, and are seen by some scientists as proof that our climate is somewhat out of control, there is hardly a mention of the fact the grain harvests in vast areas of inland Australia have been wonderful and a reason for intense satisfaction.

    Geoffrey Blainey has written 40 books. His most recent is Before I Forget: An Early Memoir.



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  3. No more base 10. All numerical references in binary!

    Amateur, we choose n-ary at my place where, if one is sensible, n must be prime. Party house it is.

    The 10101 comment above is not quite true, computers have trouble with things like 1/10 in binary.


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  4. rosie says: May 14, 2022 at 1:28 pm

    Of course no-one in the hospitality industry would ever dream of offering people cash employment.

    All jokes aside, I’ve only ever seen one hospitality operator in my region offering cash. That was 20 yrs ago.
    He had union protection, coz his son-in-law was the union industrial officer for the region.

    This … brilliant tactic …. came unstuck badly via an unhappy bank valuation when he sold the place.

    Seen it once. Heard of it plenty. Know lotsa people who’ve been subjected to it in CBD restaurants, 24hr convenience stores, etc.
    They were all accepting & agreeable to be paid $10 hr in cash.


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  5. Plenty of dickless upticking today, I see.

    Metric. Imperial. Cars, and the people who drive them.

    Not one mention of the koo dettat.

    Shameful.


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  6. It will be interesting to see how far on the compass points sunflower will be grown.

    8000 USD/t for (highly) refined sunflower oil I have heard.

    You grow it regardless how marginal the land is I guess.

    I wonder if they will track up to 2500 AUD/t to match margins in other oilseeds.


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  7. The three chain road.
    If I recall correctly they were put in place to break up squatters strategic selections.
    Related parties would take four single square mile selections in long strips arranged in a square, thus stranding the block in the centre.
    Laws were passed enabling people to access the stranded block by cutting a three chain road through the perimeter.
    That is if my year 8 Strayan History is right.


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  8. What would be the point of Albo moving into The Lodge?
    He’s got no family, he might as well live in a Pub.

    Any room at your Pub, VaxxedUp Sal?


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  9. a cricket pitch length

    22 yards = 20.1168 meters (metres)

    Or 20.12 metres for the sake of the bat peoples.

    Not settled. One yard equals .9144 metres.

    As for distance, it’s kms for this personage. Although we did apparently cover over 11,000 miles in 1993 while on the epic USA journey. 😕


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  10. Gez, Bush, it sounds like you guys (and other farmers) are going to have a few great years growing stuff. Lot’s of luck you and make billions. It sounds to me like it’s back to the Korean war.
    French fashion meets the Aussie farmer
    There was a funny story that I read or watched a docu ( I forget) some while ago about the history of Christian Dior. In early up to the mid 50s or so, Australia was the largest export market for Christian Dior. That’s quite an accomplishment considering there was also the US. But we were the biggest. And then I put 2 and 3 together and came up with 7. I recall how farmers and their wives would make trips to Melbourne and Sydney spending up big after the sales. Farmers wives were Christian Dior’s largest customer base at the time. Incredible, as it was in the 50s.

    But look how export oriented the Europeans are.


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  11. JC says:
    May 14, 2022 at 8:09 pm

    Thanks for that, JC.

    I’ve been alluding to this for a few weeks now.

    It’s a perfect storm in our favour.


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  12. Rosie

    Keep in mind what Driller says, because he’s like General Motors. Driller’s truck stop is the marker for Australian hospitality. Like GM used to be, if Driller sneezes, the entire Australian hospitality industry catches a cold.


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  13. Sancho, a tenement I was contracted on had a particularly bothersome landholder whose CCA was just downright obstructive. We found after perusing the cadastral maps there was a gazetted road easement right into the area we needed access to but never been opened up. The project co-ordinator actually considered putting a proposal to Isaac Shire Council open it and the errant landholder would have been on the hoc to fence it. He chose not to go there in the end.


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  14. Metric/Imperial: mention of $68 kg for rib fillet this morning encouraged me to pick up a half rib fillet from my local butcher while it’s available and has not reached such an astronomical price. I was relieved that the older butcher was available to do the slicing so I could ask for inch thick slices. 2.5cm sounds ridiculous.


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  15. If I recall correctly they were put in place to break up squatters strategic selections.
    Related parties would take four single square mile selections in long strips arranged in a square, thus stranding the block in the centre.

    The most egregious abuse of this would be interesting.


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  16. Rockdoctor, this relates to Victoria pre-Federation, but it wouldn’t surprise me that the same squatter tactics and the same legislative remedies weren’t being used in all colonies.


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  17. Sancho Panzer says: May 14, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    The three chain road.
    If I recall correctly they were put in place to break up squatters strategic selections.

    Heh, excellent!
    Round here a road is for…. access. There were no restrictions/rules on selecting land.

    There’s more two chain roads here than anything else, however they exist only in the gazetting.
    These two chain roads have never been fenced or used, however theoretically they’re there if there’s ever a want for a road one day.

    There are lots of land boundaries around here that have to this day never been surveyed, leading to blocks of land with “approximately” prefixed to the declared area.
    (However boundaries to freehold land are surveyed, as are boundaries over useable land.)

    Interestingly, some roads are not excised from the block of land they traverse & are simply built & declared an “access” or somesuch. (These would all be dead-end roads leading to one farm only)


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  18. Salvatore:

    Chain is possibly the one imperial measure that is never going to go away.
    It is everywhere. Heck I still talk & think chains in daily conversation, as do kids who’ve never learned imperial.

    I was a Chainman. It was always zero for me, with the plumbob and the tension spring.
    Youse young fellers have got it easy wiv ya Lectronics ‘n stuff.


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  19. Farmers wives were Christian Dior’s largest customer base at the time. Incredible, as it was in the 50s.

    I remember being told that was when wool was worth a pound a pound.
    It was worth salvaging the wool from dead sheep.


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  20. BBBear:

    One week to go. Do you think the new Mrs Albo has rung Chloe for the curtain measurements or made her own while Albo was out with his minders?

    I think the debacle of the previous effort of “Government Ready” photo sessions has instilled a bit of caution in the heifers, Humphry.
    Mind you, I bet there’s a tape measure or two in certain ladies handbags.


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  21. I remember being told that was when wool was worth a pound a pound.
    It was worth salvaging the wool from dead sheep.

    Walk through this. We very likely sold premium wool to the French who then turned into extremely expensive female clothing, sold to the wives of the blokes who owned the sheep. The pound for a pound ended up costing the farmer dudes a pound of wool for 100 quid ! 🙂 Somehow the frogs made out like bandits.


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  22. Salvatore:

    That malaria riddled shithole where you were brought may have used such a measure, but ~90% of the Australian population lives in the cities. Chains were only used in bikie brawls and not measure. So stop pretending it was a common measure in Australia, you dickhead.

    It forgets history didn’t start when it was born.
    70 years ago, Imperial was ALL there was.


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  23. Oops! Belay my previous re surveying.
    I’ve just been corrected.
    Turns out plenty of freehold land in this district has never been fully surveyed (as in; all four boundaries)


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  24. Zipster:

    Yovanna Ventura

    Lovely.
    She jiggles when she walks, like a woman should. The gold bikini top was a bit too small, needed to give her girlie bits some room to move. 0.48 min.
    Ok, where’s my ventolin?
    Breathing funny…


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  25. sales assistants who were not compensated for hearing this stuff on endless repeat

    Presumably resulting in irreparable brain damage – if they were gifted with the requisite grey matter in the first place.

    NKP – we all have our own special journeys on this planet. Some are “difficult”, some are “infuriating”, some are “preposterous” and some are just bloody sad.

    A white woman appears, shortly before being banned for her privilege … 😕


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  26. Turtlehead, except “it” didn’t make a comment regarding the past when we were imperial as I responded directly to Driller’s comment about the present, you nasty thickheaded kunt.

    Here’s his comment again.

    Heck I still talk & think chains in daily conversation, as do kids who’ve never learned imperial.

    The reason I never have anything to do with you is because I don’t respect what you have to say. You’re a thicko and actually a blight on this blog and this last comment speaks to that in spades.

    (Now let me predict we see some nasty passive aggressive comment about me in the middle of the night under an alias, because I hurt your feelings. It’s not like it isn’t a pattern )

    Seriously, you’re like a neurotic sheila.


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  27. 132andBushsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Sancho Panzer says:
    May 14, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    Didn’t know that.
    ………………
    Dotsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 8:51 pm

    Sancho

    Was there a limit on the width of a selection?

    I assumed it could be as low as one chain, to build a homestead on.

    Guys, please.
    Don’t press me on details.
    This is based on memories from year 8 history so my memory is a bit clouded by ADHD and a permanent unrequited 24/7 stiffy over Leanne O’Reilly.


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  28. Top marks to you Winston. My dad did a stint as chainman.
    Purely coz the SG turned up without an offsider, & he stepped in for a few days.

    Those blokes (two-man survey teams from the SGs) are one public service cohort who oughta be immortalised in a public statue.


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  29. Pound a pound wool.
    Korean War and lots of woollen uniforms to stop soldiers freezing to death.

    But I’d guess the very high premium grade went to Europe, which as the time was most likely France. I’m not sure, but I think the top Italian houses began to appear in the 60s.


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  30. The Hun, apropos of eternal pub stories for this little-known footy bloke:

    An AFL player has been revealed as a secret Aussie confidant of screen siren Amber Heard during her time in Australia in 2017.

    Former Gold Coast Suns and Hawthorn player Mitch Hallahan is believed to have forged a close friendship with the Hollywood bombshell after a chance encounter in The Garden Bar at The Star Casino on the Gold Coast in 2017.

    ‘Forged’ a close friendship. Hahaha, glorious.


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  31. I remember being told that was when wool was worth a pound a pound.
    It was worth salvaging the wool from dead sheep.

    The price of wool rose to “a pound a pound” during the Korean war, amid a general boom in the Australian economy. There was a “prosperity loading” of a pound a week added to the basic wage, including the rate for shearing. When the economy began to slow down, and the price of wool fell, graziers called for the removal of the “prosperity loading” from the rate for shearing, and that was the basis of the shearers strike, depicted in “Sunday Too Far Away.”


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  32. I remember being told that was when wool was worth a pound a pound.

    Snort, cackle.
    We were in Harrods food hall in the late 1980’s.
    Mrs Panzer points to the lobster and says, “Hey, that’s not too bad”.
    I said to her, “That’s not dollars per kilogram. It’s pounds per pound.”


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  33. Rabz says:
    May 14, 2022 at 8:56 pm

    err, NKP, thanks for that.

    Muzakised Pretenders is mild.

    I still have scars from listening to the The Mamas & the Papas’ Monday, Monday every three hours or so for a week when I was doing Christmas work at Target. Pretenders would have been fine! 🙂


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  34. JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 9:09 pm

    I believe Zegna owns a sheep farm in Tasmania producing very high quality wool for its own mills.

    There is a micron count (dunno the number) which is the threshold.
    Above that number and it is scratchy.
    Below that number it doesn’t irritate the skin.


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  35. Zegna owns a sheep farm in Tasmania producing very high quality wool for its own mills

    I always enjoy paying a premium for Ozzie wool from my suit tailor. Based as he is, in Hong Kong.

    Still costs a third of what it would cost to have suit tailored here in the equivalent material.

    This country keeps trying my patience. Again and again, it does.


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  36. Imperial/ American weights and measures are far superior to metric in every possible way.

    I prefer a hybrid system based upon my own ‘a hundred is a lot’ metric …..

    Eg,
    for Temperature, use Fahrenheit: 100F is hot
    for speed, use mph: 100mph is fast
    for weight, use kg:100kg is a big bugger

    etc


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  37. Dotsays:
    May 14, 2022 at 11:26 am
    The only reason why montell is correct is because everything woke turns to shit.

    munty himself being a good example of the process.


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  38. There is a micron count (dunno the number) which is the threshold.

    Supposedly 30 Micron, but any wool that coarse is fit only for scouring pots.


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  39. Imperial vs metric?

    Bring back gills and ells I say!

    Seriously though, if you’re a certain age you can work in both. What really irritates me is American volume measurements in cooking. A “stick” for butter?


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  40. for Temperature, use Fahrenheit: 100F is hot

    Yes, F is such a great system for hot weather and C is good for cold. I like C for cold weather because I can relate to 0 and how cold it is. 32 and below, not so much.


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  41. JC:

    We rightly praise John Monash for his victories against the German army on French soil in 1918, in the last months of the war; but the long blockade conducted by the British navy in the North Sea had already weakened German morale at home and in the trenches by inflicting hunger on millions of its people.

    IIRC, the embargo on shipments of food to Germany, and the starvation that followed until the Treaty was signed in 1919 poisoned the Germanic people against the Allies for a generation and probably led to the ill feeling that resulted in WW2.

    One fact rarely noticed is that three of the world’s five largest wheat importers in 2020 were Muslim nations. Egypt was the largest, followed by Indonesia and Turkey. A fourth nation, Nigeria, has recently become more a Muslim than a Christian nation.

    Indonesia, as I’ve spoken of recently, is within range of Australia if hungry and desperate people decide to ‘visit’ one of SEA’s breadbaskets.


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  42. While we’re at it, here’s a shameless plug for my Sydney shirt tailor.

    The Rochefort. Tell him I sent you. He’s had a couple of very tough years.

    But still in there, doing what he does best, creating magnificent shirts, ties, cravats and suits.

    St James Trust Building, Elizabeth St, next to the Synagogue, opposite Hyde Park. 🙂


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  43. She did bring home a few trinkets including a couple of ‘Z’ car stickers. She says that many/most cars in Russia now have this sticker on them. The Z is in the colours of St George (orange and black).

    What a lovely gift! Do they make armbands with that emblem on?


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  44. IIRC, the embargo on shipments of food to Germany, and the starvation that followed until the Treaty was signed in 1919

    Anywhere from 500,000 to 800,000 German civilians are supposed to have died from starvation during that time.


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  45. Sancho Panzer says:
    May 14, 2022 at 9:17 pm

    JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 9:09 pm

    I believe Zegna owns a sheep farm in Tasmania producing very high quality wool for its own mills.

    There is a micron count (dunno the number) which is the threshold.
    Above that number and it is scratchy.
    Below that number it doesn’t irritate the skin.

    Dude, when we used to wear suits, I bought a zegna suit which was super 120, whatever means. The top used to be 100. I dunno if its a gimmick, but the link says they’re at super 210. I cannot imagine how great the feel of super 210 is because I was amazed by 120 (in the 90s).

    https://www.gentlemansgazette.com/wool-super-numbers-explained/

    I’m guessing Putin is decked out in 210 because he reportedly spends US$75,000 on tailor made suits.

    Rabz, next time get Kiton or Brioni to make you a suit and have the personal tailor fly out. They only cost 75K a pop. Be like Pute and spend up big.


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  46. Rabz:
    I thought the Heroin Chic look had gone out of fashion.
    Honestly, mate, if you took her home to meet the parents they’d immediately drag roasts of all kinds out of the freezer, dig up a potato field and give the poor thing a decent feed.


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  47. So it appears to my conspiratorial mind that Musk’s request for twitter’s data on its fake accounts was the plan all along.

    Am I wrong?


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    1
  48. It’s 4oz Rabz. A bit less than half a 125g block.

    My hobby is all imperial, my work was metric. Somehow the brain can cope with both.

    Chuckle. Ask anyone under 60 to add up a £ /- column. You’re lucky if they can work out the correct change.


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    3
  49. I still have scars from listening to the The Mamas & the Papas’ Monday, Monday every three hours or so for a week when I was doing Christmas work

    Sacré bleu! 😕


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    3
  50. There is a micron count (dunno the number) which is the threshold.
    Above that number and it is scratchy.
    Below that number it doesn’t irritate the skin.

    Sort of.
    All wool below about 22 micron will feel soft but the prickle factor is caused by medullated fibres that are very coarse hollow fibres in otherwise fine soft wool.
    Breeding this out of sheep has helped broader wool types to used where finer more expensive would be the pick. Remember the finer the wool the less you get of it from a sheep.
    High fashion uses very fine wool often below 18 micron. The softness is not so much a factor as the sheer nature of the fabric and it’s drop, as they say.


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    2
  51. While we’re at it, here’s a shameless plug for my Sydney shirt tailor.

    Here’s mine. They pretty decent and not over the top. New York based and online. They must do a lot of sales in Oz because they price you in Aussie dollars online.

    https://propercloth.com/shop/

    You get a couple of years wear then chuck’em.


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    1
  52. 132and bush:

    It was worth salvaging the wool from dead sheep.

    Still done – leave it for a few months and the kids from the local 10 pupil school would do a run of the property and collect it all for things for the school.
    It happens in the cotton belt too – amazing how much a mob of kids can pick up from the road edge and give a rough clean out then put it in a bag. I remember (IIRC) one school that picked up two big bales of cotton when a bale was worth about $15k.
    Details are fuzzy.


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    2
  53. Chuckle. Ask anyone under 60 to add up a £ /- column. You’re lucky if they can work out the correct change.

    We should be using grains of gold and silver.


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    1
  54. duncanm says:
    May 14, 2022 at 9:36 pm

    So it appears to my conspiratorial mind that Musk’s request for twitter’s data on its fake accounts was the plan all along.

    Am I wrong?

    Why would he though without intending the buyout and having acquired 10ish%.


    Report comment

  55. get Kiton or Brioni to make you a suit and have the personal tailor fly out. They only cost 75K a pop. Be like the Pute and spend up big

    JC – given the savings I’ve racked up over the last several years*, why the hell not. I’ll spend the rest on a Ferrari for the tri-state chase while hoovering massive quantities of illicit substances after enjoying the presence of sexee young women of questionable morals prior to launching the whole circus off a not so small cliff.

    If you have to go out(as we all do), you might as well make it newsworthy. 🙂

    *As vouched for by Goose Morristeen


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  56. JC:

    (Now let me predict we see some nasty passive aggressive comment about me in the middle of the night under an alias, because I hurt your feelings. It’s not like it isn’t a pattern )

    I’ve never used an alias.
    Wait.
    I once posted as Winston Smiths Keyboard – about 15 years ago on the Old Cat. Didn’t think anyone caught on, but you must have, you clever fellow.


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  57. Re the Golden Age of F1.

    I’m most of the way through Murray Walker’s autobiography, recommended for fans.

    In the 1990s he was allowed to drive a proper F1 car – a Williams, IIRC – around a proper F1 circuit. I hadn’t realised just how physically demanding it was to drive those things for an entire race. While Walker was an old geezer, he was pretty fit for his age (lived to be 98). He described the discomfort, the noise, the massive changes in G force and the concentration required so that he didn’t end up spinning into a wall. Note that he was no amateur in motor racing, having raced motorbikes with moderate success as a young man.

    He said that after 15 minutes out on the track he felt like he’d been beaten up. Those guys were very fit and strong.

    The life of a top driver was no picnic – they earned their massive salaries. As well as risking their lives in every race, they worked every day practising, testing, and at least a couple of hours of hard physical workouts. In the off season their contracts required them to attend countless tedious functions to promote their sponsors’ products, all over the world.

    Like others here, I lost interest in F1 as it became progressively more woke. But for a while there, it was the tops. Watching the likes of Senna and Schumacher with Murray on commentary duty – awesome!


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    6
  58. I’ve never used an alias.
    Wait.

    Yes you have or someone associated with you. That’s because you’re a dumb, slimy passive aggressive piece of shit.

    Did you apologize for misreading or more likely dishonestly portraying my comment as it related to the Stoush troll’s? Of course you didn’t.

    Stop talking to me and ignore my comments. You’re just fucking worthless as far as I’m concerned.


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    3
  59. I remember (IIRC) one school that picked up two big bales of cotton when a bale was worth about $15k.

    Details are fuzzy.

    Very fuzzy, Winston.

    Not sure a bale of cotton has ever been worth that but I have heard some schools do it as a fundraiser. A lot of work though.


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    1
  60. Operation Totem’s black mist continues to hang over us
    An atomic bomb test in South Australia in 1956.
    An atomic bomb test in South Australia in 1956.

    By Simon Caterson
    12:00AM May 14, 2022
    42 Comments

    Some historical wounds refuse to heal. There are Irish people who recollect the Great Famine as though it happened within living memory, and there are Scots who haven’t forgotten the Highland Clearances.

    An Australian example is the British atomic bomb tests of the 1950s conducted at various locations in South Australia and Western Australia. Even allowing for the fraught atmosphere of the Cold War, Britain took Australia for granted in a way that now seems almost incredible. Equally astounding was the willingness of the Australian government, led by Robert Menzies, to be treated with such blatant disrespect by their British counterparts.

    Elizabeth Tynan, who is an associate professor at James Cook University, argues forcefully in The Secret of Emu Field that the British authorities exploited the loyalty and good will of Australians in order to conduct highly toxic military experiments that would never have been allowed to take place in the United Kingdom itself.

    She explains that Britain’s nuclear weapons program was not supported by the United States, whose intelligence officials at that time did not trust the British due to the prevalence of Soviet spies in the UK establishment.

    Following on from the well-received Atomic Thunder, which covered the tests at Maralinga, The Secret of Emu Field is the second volume in a projected trilogy that will conclude with the tests at the Montebello Islands known as Operation Hurricane.

    This multi-volume work must rate as one of the most significant projects currently being undertaken in the study of Australian history. The research has been conducted in challenging conditions for the historian in terms of the location and hazardous nature of the actual events, and also the ongoing secrecy surrounding the subject matter.

    “This small, hidden place is on the edge of the Great Victoria Desert, about 900 kilometres northwest of Adelaide”, writes Tynan. Emu Field is located in a vast plain of almost entirely flat mulga country located in the remotest corner of South Australia, with the only road access being via an unsealed track that demands five hour’s drive from Maralinga. A permit to visit the area is required from both the Defence Department and the traditional owners.

    “Its beauty does not make it any less harsh, a harshness that was the catalyst for the extraordinary skills of the people who inhabited it for millennia, and who continue to visit and to care for this place. But no-one lingers here now. It is damaged.”

    The Secret of Emu Field describes Operation Totem, the least known of the series of British nuclear tests in Australia. “The British were free to do with the site what they wished”, notes Tynan, “and that is exactly what they did”. Only one Australian-based nuclear scientist, English-born ANU professor Ernest Titterton, was allowed “anywhere near the core sensitive data about the test”, according to Tynan.

    The tests were hastily arranged, conducted with minimal public scrutiny, and when it was all over the British left it to Australia to clean up the mess. “The vacuum in the documentary record around Totem represents the very worst impulses of the British government. To control, deny and cover up its activities, even retrospectively and in relation to Australian territory, where Australians are affected”.

    Tynan believes that the full story of Operation Totem “in all its technical details may never be known”. Her own writing is both constrained and energised by the paucity of publicly available information about the Totem tests, including the black mist that appeared after the explosions. According to Tynan, this strange phenomenon has never been fully explained, or at least not in the public record.

    In May 2018, well over half a century after the tests took place, key files in UK archives were quietly withdrawn from access. “Even before the withdrawal, British files about Emu were particularly hard to get, with whole files or parts of files heavily redacted, officially described as ‘retained by Ministry of Defence’; some files were redacted after being publicly available for many years”.



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  61. The warmest pullover I ever had was a Christian Dior. You could see through it but it was so light and warm, don’t know how that works. My MiL knitted me a greasy wool one for sailing but that was for keeping the briney out as well.


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  62. I was unaware of this track until the ’80s

    Then you were very lucky, NKP.

    Supercramp – an agglomeration of imbeciles epitomising the worst excesses of that most woeful decade.


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  63. Salvatore:
    I did about 2 years with Brisbane City Council in the survey section when the Airport was being done. Cutting lines through the mangroves, and fighting off Scots Grey mosquito’s that were the size of sparrows.
    The Chainmens Room was way down in the bowels of the Council parking area. When the phone went off, there were a couple of the older blokes who used to do the rounds with Fred Brophy’s Boxing troupe, who’d hear the bell and be up ready to go a round or two.
    Funny as hell.
    Great blokes.
    Good times.


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    3
  64. JCsays:
    May 14, 2022 at 9:43 pm
    duncanm says:
    May 14, 2022 at 9:36 pm

    So it appears to my conspiratorial mind that Musk’s request for twitter’s data on its fake accounts was the plan all along.

    Am I wrong?

    Why would he though without intending the buyout and having acquired 10ish%.

    So – fake accounts are way up on the official numbers. I know this, you know this, he knows this.

    He can flush out the (twitter-approved) fakes, and pull out of the buyout deal. Keep his 10% of a now more honest organisation.


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    4
  65. Some historical wounds refuse to heal. There are Irish people who recollect the Great Famine as though it happened within living memory, and there are Scots who haven’t forgotten the Highland Clearances.

    An Australian example is the British atomic bomb tests of the 1950s conducted at various locations in South Australia and Western Australia.

    I’ve never met anyone who gives a flying duck about a few nukes having been let off in the middle of nowhere.


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    14
  66. I’ve never met anyone who gives a flying duck about a few nukes having been let off in the middle of nowhere.

    Boomers with cancer can see it as some sort of jihad worthy topic. I triggered a bloke I know once, but he turned into a yarn about 4WDing.


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    3
  67. He can flush out the (twitter-approved) fakes, and pull out of the buyout deal. Keep his 10% of a now more honest organisation.

    Sure.

    I think he’s a legit buyer, but he possibly now thinks the price was too high and will negotiate down. He would know by now that the fake accounts are likely much, mush more than 5%. Why? How? Because it’s 99.99999% certain some high up on the inside attempting to suck up told him (and possibly multiple insider sources). It’s also a great way to totally destroy the board’s credibility.


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    3
  68. JC:

    I believe Zegna owns a sheep farm in Tasmania producing very high quality wool for its own mills.

    …and IIRC, the Chinese were sold a breeding lot of Merinos that kicked off their fine wool market.
    That particular bit of stupidity has yet to come back and bite our arses.


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    6
  69. Gez at 9:38.
    Thanks for that.
    I wasn’t 100% on the wool fibre thing.
    I get skin irritation from some fibres and it shits me when I buy a superfine cotton shirt … with a polyester label sewn into the seam with fishing line.


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    3
  70. 1 grain of gold is a good measure.

    30 cents or so.

    That local call will cost two grains.
    That tonne of canola is priced at 3000 grains.
    That steak dinner at Nobu cost me 500 grains.
    Oil got so cheap after the first Gulf War, it traded for about 800 grains/bbl.
    The median salary is 280k grains.


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  71. I’ve never met anyone who gives a flying duck about a few nukes having been let off in the middle of nowhere.

    How about me. As an original owner, I’m still traumatized.


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    2
  72. That steak dinner at Nobu cost me 500 grains.

    What steak dinner at Nobu. It’s a sushi joint.

    Dot, if there is one, go to Meat&Wine sometime. Order the pork ribs but for two and go to town. It’s amazing. Wifey won’t go, so I go with the kid. He loves it.


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  73. Duncanm:

    So it appears to my conspiratorial mind that Musk’s request for twitter’s data on its fake accounts was the plan all along.
    Am I wrong?

    It didn’t occur to me that way, but I think you’ve cracked it.


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    1
  74. On fake and dormant Twitter accounts.
    I seem to remember KRudd joining Twatter in 2007-08 and instantly attracting hundreds of thousands of followers.
    He was “popular Kev” back then so the fact that most of the accounts originated in Eastern Europe, were less than a month old and had no activity went unreported.


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  75. Imperial/ American weights and measures are far superior to metric in every possible way.

    Woodworkers, metalworkers and engineers who make things to spec might disagree.

    Sorry I’m late to the game, Cats- I’ve been railroading for pleasure today.

    I was trained to read steam pressure gauges in Pounds per Square Inch in Australia. In South Africa, I had to learn to read them in metric (100PSI = 770kPa. Scary numbers, in relative terms), and then I found out from the Continental Europeans there that they found Metric confusing as they did all their pressures in Atmospheres (770kPa = 7.7Bar)!

    At least all the gauges had redlines on them… 🙁

    (I at least knew how to read vacuum in kPa before I went over to SA- Most steamers I have driven in Australia have their brake gauges in Inches of Mercury for vacuum, and PSI for air).


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    2
  76. lol Ranga

    LMVH owns the brand now. Margin wise LMVH must be or was one on the most profitable firms in the world.

    LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton Société Européenne’s latest twelve months gross profit margin is 68.3%.

    Absolutely incredible margin.

    The frog fuck is making a fortune on these huge brand mark-ups.


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    2
  77. Calli:

    Chuckle. Ask anyone under 60 to add up a £ /- column. You’re lucky if they can work out the correct change.

    Funny you should mention that – I was doing it as a mental exercise the other day.
    But then, I miss out on one of the criteria…


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    3
  78. Rabz:

    I still have scars from listening to the The Mamas & the Papas’ Monday, Monday every three hours or so for a week when I was doing Christmas work

    Sacré bleu! ?

    I used to love their work, but when I found out about the shenanigans I can’t listen to them any more.


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    3
  79. I thought LMVH’s Bernard Anault was married to what were the best tits in Hollywood,(Salma Hayek) but it’s the other Frog billionaire Frank Pinhead or François-Henri Pinault who owns the competitor.


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  80. …and IIRC, the Chinese were sold a breeding lot of Merinos that kicked off their fine wool market.

    I’ve been retired from the wool industry a few years, now, but, from memory, the Chunks kicked off their fine wool industry with Merino’s brought from Saxony – what is now Germany?


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    1
  81. Sancho Panzer says:
    May 14, 2022 at 10:21 pm

    On fake and dormant Twitter accounts.
    I seem to remember KRudd joining Twatter in 2007-08 and instantly attracting hundreds of thousands of followers.
    He was “popular Kev” back then so the fact that most of the accounts originated in Eastern Europe, were less than a month old and had no activity went unreported.

    Don’t these so called influencers etc buy dummy accounts?


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  82. Rabz:

    err, Winnie to whom are you referring? Hopefully not the luminous Amanda Brown.

    The Wolf Alice chickie babe. I think.
    Honestly, she needs a good feed before you try any horizontal folk dancing.


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    3
  83. Theocratic dictatorships do not lie only in the distant past: There are a number of them on the planet today. What is to prevent the United States from becoming one of them?

    Robert Heinlein thought that was quite possible many decades ago. See “Revolt in 2100”


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    3
  84. I’ve never met anyone who gives a flying duck about a few nukes having been let off in the middle of nowhere.

    To the best of my knowledge and belief, the deal was that the Brits would test nuclear weapons in Australia, in return they would pass on the technology, should Australia go down the nuclear path?


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  85. Now for some Foreigner from 1978:

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8yDmeYxTeC0

    I once got to make a riff on this song when I walked into a testing room at Fiona Stanley Hospital shortly after it opened. And a fire alarm randomly triggered. I was so pleased with myself. 🙂

    “I’m hot-blooded, check it and see,
    I’ve got a fever of one hundred and three.
    Fire alarms go off at random ’round me,
    I’m hot-blooded, hot-blooded!”

    #ShitpostingInRealLife


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  86. Rabzsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 8:24 pm

    a cricket pitch length

    22 yards = 20.1168 meters (metres)

    Back in the 1980’s when I was playing, the captain who was also a fast bowler turns up and hurriedly marks out the wicket and bangs the stumps in.
    First over is absolute off-pace trash and gets belted.
    Same happens to the other quick at the other end.
    Someone then notices the faded lines from last week’s game further over on the strip is a bit shorter.
    Yep.
    Double sided tape.
    22 metre pitch.


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    6
  87. You know, Bernard Anault is worth about US$150 Billion. Unlike the tech fuckers and even including Musk, that net worth is supported by a seriously profitable operation . Every freaking dollar of sales LMVH makes, 68 cents is gross operating margin. Just amazing.


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    1
  88. Units get mixed up. Most of the world sets altimeter subscales in hPa (used to be millibars but I suspect the malign hand of the French). USA uses inches of mercury and the Russians used millimeters of mercury.
    Anyone having trouble with metric never did physics at high school which might explain a few things.


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    4
  89. …and IIRC, the Chinese were sold a breeding lot of Merinos that kicked off their fine wool market.

    Probably still smarting over the silkworms.


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    4
  90. JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 10:30 pm

    dummy followers I mean

    Exactly.
    You need to salt the goldmine.
    Who is going to follow someone with 11 existing followers?
    But 30,000?
    He/she/ze must really have something.
    I reckon the 5% number is incredibly low.


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    2
  91. Timothy Neilson:

    I’ve never met anyone who gives a flying duck about a few nukes having been let off in the middle of nowhere.

    IIRC, there were about 20 of them?

    Tell the youngsters these days and they wouldn’t believe there were 20 nukes let off in Australia.

    Garn!

    Nah, we used them to eradicate the Plesiosaurs that was killin’ off the sheep!

    No way!

    And we had Megarabbits! The size of VW’s! One infestation dug out Mount Eyre, and all we had left was a bloody great salty lake!

    Really?

    Of course not, you stupid bastards.



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    4
  92. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha says:
    May 14, 2022 at 10:33 pm

    To the best of my knowledge and belief, the deal was that the Brits would test nuclear weapons in Australia, in return they would pass on the technology, should Australia go down the nuclear path?

    It would seem that plan was kicked off.. the Lucas Height HIFAR reactor (1958) was a UK design, and I think designed to be a kick-starter for nuke power in Oz.


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  93. I got two answers about the Inflationary question of True or False:

    as long as the US sells its debt on the international markets, hyperinflation is entirely impossible. No ifs or buts. The simplicity may be deceiving, and apparently is for many, but sometimes things really are that simple. (Almost) nobody bought German debt in 1923, or Zimbabwe’s in 2000 or thereabouts.

    Winston and Will both seemed to think this is rubbish and so you would get inflation even when the source of new money is backed by central bank debt purchased internationally.

    The person arguing for inflationary complacency was someone youv’e no reason to have heard of, Nicole Foss, aka Stoneleigh, blogging here. The person they were arguing against back in 2010 was none other than… Gonzalo Lira. The same guy who has gotten some wartime slavic attention recently.
    When I heard of his Ukrainian travails here on the Cat I knew his name rung a bell as a commentator who had been spruiking some impending great economic catastrophe years back. I thought it was peak oil, but he seems to have mentioned that only tangentially when talking about the USA’s early 1980s inflation. It was really the GFC where his blogging first got most circulation.
    And with that obscure and minor point of trivia revealed, I bid you good night.


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  94. Hallward

    Stop the grandstanding. You once told us how you were an engineer. It then turned out that you weren’t trained as an engineer but in climate science, which in the 70s would have attracted the least able. Subsequently you claimed having done a few subjects in engineering. Which meant you lied.

    Laughably, you’ve been seen to criticize economics for not being able to forecast well enough, yet you have also claimed you were a weather forecaster. How ironic.

    Your just a fraud and all your “complex” and frankly boring discourse is to grandstand. It doesn’t work as most people see though the crap.


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  95. J.C.

    I think he’s a legit buyer, but he possibly now thinks the price was too high and will negotiate down. He would know by now that the fake accounts are likely much, mush more than 5%. Why? How? Because it’s 99.99999% certain some high up on the inside attempting to suck up told him (and possibly multiple insider sources). It’s also a great way to totally destroy the board’s credibility.

    I think it’s a bit of a toss up but if he wanted to destroy them, he’s doing a great job.
    There must be a lot of people who got off on being Social Media ‘Masters of the Universe’ who are regretting their actions.


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    1
  96. Thefrollickingmole says:
    May 14, 2022 at 10:47 pm

    JC
    He made about $600 profit off me getting a little handbag for the missus for Mother’s Day.
    All about the brand.

    It’s an amazing business, Mole. He has to ensure maximum profitability without destroying the brands by making them too common. He also has to select the right creatives to keep the brands going. He’s tops.

    We went to Chandon in the Yarra Valley during lockdown and toured some of the wineries. I think LMVH still owns it. The product line was really attractive in both taste and appearance. Frankly, I think Chandon made here is by far superior to the yellow label Moet.


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  97. J.C:
    Salma Hayek.
    Come on, JC. That poor girl would have looked good at 18, but even then the stretch marks were starting to ruin the shape.
    I feel a certain sympathy for these very large breasted women – it must be horrible having the back pain that goes along with such an unbalanced torso – let alone the straps digging in to the shoulders.


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    4
  98. I think he’s a legit buyer, but he possibly now thinks the price was too high and will negotiate down. He would know by now that the fake accounts are likely much, mush more than 5%. Why? How? Because it’s 99.99999% certain some high up on the inside attempting to suck up told him (and possibly multiple insider sources). It’s also a great way to totally destroy the board’s credibility.

    Two things.
    Firstly, wouldn’t advertisers want to sue the arse off Twatter if they’ve been paying to advertise to Bulgarian bots?
    Secondly, almost all the board own bugger all shares and appeared to be largely unemployable academics for whom the director’s fees would be a decent chunk of their income. This meant the board were being run by senior management, not the other way around.


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  99. ZK2A:

    I’ve been retired from the wool industry a few years, now, but, from memory, the Chunks kicked off their fine wool industry with Merino’s brought from Saxony – what is now Germany?

    I understood it was from Australia because of the screeching it caused here.
    Possibly a cross breed ?


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    1
  100. Frankly, I think Chandon made here is by far superior to the yellow label Moet.

    Very smart branding.
    Linked by using the very recognisable Chandon name, but differentiated by dropping off Moet.
    It is good quality stuff and not outrageously priced.
    I think they have other Chandon vineyards around the world.
    One in California I think.
    As long as they don’t open up in China …


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  101. Two things.
    Firstly, wouldn’t advertisers want to sue the arse off Twatter if they’ve been paying to advertise to Bulgarian bots?

    Twatter can say they have no idea what are or aren’t legit accounts. And don’t forget the fine print of their representation. No decent lawyer would have ever allowed them to make a strict rep to outside parties about the veracity of accounts. Also, parsing words and wordsmithing is what lawyers do, so they would be able to imply they have 50 trillion accounts 🙂

    Secondly, almost all the board own bugger all shares and appeared to be largely unemployable academics for whom the director’s fees would be a decent chunk of their income. This meant the board were being run by senior management, not the other way around.

    Sure.


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  102. Chuckle. Ask anyone under 60 to add up a £ /- column. You’re lucky if they can work out the correct change.

    To break oneself in gently, hire ten random school leavers & see if each of ’em can add up a column of decimal currency.

    It’ll cure the boss’ low blood pressure.


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    4
  103. JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 11:13 pm

    Sanchez

    Notice they gave an estimate of the shoddy accounts. An estimate is a furlong and 30 chains wide.

    I think it is 12 cubits by 3 roods.
    But anyway, that is the estimate which the USD 54 offer pivots around.
    Let’s say it is 25% active genuine accounts.
    That means he gets it way cheaper but, perversely, it is a much diminished business in terms of perceived reach.
    Mind you, he will probably attract 25 million conservative accounts on day one.


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    1
  104. If you took her home to meet your ol’ man he’d immediately think

    That his son isn’t as useless as he’d imagined, while wondering “where the hell did these immaculate creatures emerge from?”


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  105. Frank:

    Probably still smarting over the silkworms.

    ..and still cranky about the tea trade when they decided to treble the price and the Brits retaliated with the opium wars.
    They keep refusing to learn the lesson – and that’s where the Fentanyl wars come from.
    “Saving Face” has never been a good way of balancing trade.


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  106. rosie says: May 14, 2022 at 1:15 pm

    Perhaps the hospitality industry should be spruiking and offering assisted fares in Spain and Portugal …

    Be better off if we did.
    In the olden days (i.e. 2019 & especially pre-2016) I got pretty good results from Portugese and to a slightly lesser extent, Spanish backpackers.

    Never had a negative experience with a Portugese backpacker, not even after 2016, which is saying something.


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  107. I was joking and indirectly mocking you,

    No, you were just making a dickhead of yourself.
    Situation normal.

    You don’t have what it takes to successfully mock me. You never will.
    Your life experience isn’t broad enough, for starters.


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    4
  108. On reflection, the Twatter advertisers are stuck with it.
    It is up to them to research which channels customers are being captured through.


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    1
  109. Salvatore, Understaffed & Overworked Martyr to Govt Covid Stupidity says:
    May 14, 2022 at 11:31 pm
    I was joking and indirectly mocking you,
    No, you were just making a dickhead of yourself.
    Situation normal.

    You don’t have what it takes to successfully mock me. You never will.
    Your life experience isn’t broad enough, for starters.

    Okay.


    Report comment

  110. JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 11:34 pm

    Not you, Sanchez. Driller, the midnight drunken stoush troll.

    It’s just that I have been called a drunken doofus three times this week.


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    2
  111. JCsays:

    May 14, 2022 at 11:33 pm

    Sanchez

    There’s also not just the active accounts but the lurking to consider too that gives Twitter influence.

    Ah, yes.
    Lurkers.
    They’re everywhere.


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    1
  112. Sancho Panzer:

    Firstly, wouldn’t advertisers want to sue the arse off Twatter if they’ve been paying to advertise to Bulgarian bots?
    Secondly, almost all the board own bugger all shares and appeared to be largely unemployable academics for whom the director’s fees would be a decent chunk of their income. This meant the board were being run by senior management, not the other way around.

    I suspect both were reasons he did it – the wailing of the left about the takeover was a delight to hear, and the thought of senior management being faced with their duplicity is good to see.
    Now if Elon walks away from the deal citing dodgy books and asking the apropriate authorities to look further into it, he’d have destroyed Twitter at minimal cost.
    Anyway – off to bed.


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  113. It’s just that I have been called a drunken doofus three times this week.

    Why only three times?


    Report comment

  114. Ah, yes.
    Lurkers.
    They’re everywhere.

    I tend to think that it’s not the active accounts that are important but the lurkers reading the content. The content is what it is today and that attracts x number of readers. That’s more important I think as that’s also where the value lies.


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  115. The content is what it is today and that attracts x number of readers. That’s more important I think as that’s also where the value lies.

    Correct.


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    1
  116. I have been called a drunken doofus three times this week

    Pancho, I’ve actually been a drunken doofus two times this week, if that’s any consolation.

    It is, what it is, what it is, ad infinitum …

    Burning wheel* … 😕

    *For poor ol’ Arks, who appears to have blundered off the figurative edge of the earth. If he has, it’s not something that should be gloated about, Cats. We all exist on a razor’s edge, whether we know it or not.


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  117. In a job, many moons ago, I had plenty of time to fill. So I would read the 96th edition of the CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics. Found a few typos and incorrect page references in the index. Should have sent them a fax. Turns out I wasn’t wasting my time as I discovered firkins, hogsheads and kilderkins.


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  118. what is wrong with you people?

    the software we use has what we’d call ‘facets’ to meta-textualise numbers

    if you want pascals in kg/(m·s2) just change the facets so that the high-speed idiot spits out the number you need.
    the scalar bit coming in is automatically translated going out.
    a bit like using a spreadsheet but without the spreadsheet

    as long as the dimensions are the same (and I dont mean measurements), translating between units is a doddle

    actually the other software is even betterer
    all numbers are dimensioned
    so just do some of these …

    x = 10kWh.to(1BTU)
    x = 10kWh.to(“BTU”)
    x = 75°F.to(1°C)
    x = to(75°F, 1°C)

    for the usual stuff, I dunno why you can’t do this in your heads
    it isn’t that hard


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  119. and, talk a bout stuff we take for granted

    number representation inside a computer will do your head in

    when the errors deriving from floating-point calcs add up to enough to ruin your work,

    you may or may not be an engineer


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  120. Hey JC.

    We’re in the USA – Eastern Coast – in late August.

    In NY, what would you recommend seeing, for an ageing military historian, apart from USS Intrepid, and the 9/11 site? I was there once before but only for two days.

    I hasten to add Mrs TE will have us covering all of the usual stuff.


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  121. LMVH owns the brand now. Margin wise LMVH must be or was one on the most profitable firms in the world.

    https://www.lvmh.com/houses/

    When you scroll everything they own, it’s pretty mind blowing.
    When I told a Kiwi that Cloudy Bay wasn’t one of theirs he was in disbelief.


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  122. Abbott Labs are on the front foot saying the two babies that died had nothing to do with their formula.
    How long before someone inside the FDA spills the beans on the whole thing.


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  123. What are the Cliff Notes of this “Pandemic Treaty”?

    No shit it seems like the plot from the old X Files movie. Use FEMA as a tool to usher in totalitarianism.


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  124. Russia-Ukraine conflict: Finnish President speaks to Russian Prez Vladimir Putin | WION

    did she ask for a recommendation on best moscow nightclubs?


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  125. Madness.

    Sexual Harassment Inquiry Launched Into Eighth Graders’ Misuse of Personal Pronouns (13 May)

    The Kiel Area School District in Kiel, Wisconsin, between Green Bay and Milwaukee, has filed a Title IX complaint against three Kiel Middle School eighth graders.

    Rabidoux’s son — “Son A” — had an encounter with the person requesting the “they/them” pronoun, she said.

    Another student “had been screaming at one of [Son A’s] friends to use proper pronouns, calling him profanity, and this friend is very soft-spoken, and kind of just sunk down into his chair,” Rabidoux told Fox 17 while recalling her son’s recollection of events.

    “[Son A] finally came up, defending him, saying, ‘He doesn’t have to use proper pronouns, it’s his constitutional right to not use; you can’t make him say things.'”

    So the poor 13 year old kids are being charged with sexual assault for standing up for their 1st Amendment rights. And you can bet that the school is going to hammer them and their parents because lefties never, ever, back down.


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  126. pete of perthsays:
    May 15, 2022 at 12:32 am
    That job was at Midland Brick when it was owned by the guys who started the company, Ric and Gerry New.

    You may have met a NZ geologist cousin of Mrs Eyrie’s named Hector. He’s sadly now deceased.
    I met Ric New quite a few times through gliding. He was one of the original pioneer Western Australian glider pilots. There’s a hill near Toodyay with a small plaque set into the ground commemorating the first soaring flight in WA (actually gain height above launch point).
    Ric was a good guy who tried to live like an American while actually living in WA.


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  127. Beginning to think they were meant to be one giant piss take.

    Just another bunch of rich fruit loops scared of the weather using the federal election to get oxygen. Australia is becoming the world capital of the doomsday cult.


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  128. The New Liberals. We’ve taken all the Shitty parts of the old liberals and made a new party out of it. The New Liberals. Now with less.


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  129. In NY, what would you recommend seeing, for an ageing military historian, apart from USS Intrepid, and the 9/11 site? I was there once before but only for two days.

    Hop onto a 737 and spend a day or 2 at the Smithsonian in Washington – there are actually 2 campuses, the better of the 2, the ‘Udvar Hazy Centre’ is about an hour out of town but is enormous and holds hundreds of historic aircraft.


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  130. The New Liberals.

    I think its a promising development. Maybe the LNP wets will wick out to the ‘new libs’ an the libs can get back to reality.


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  131. From an ancient OED: Pantagruelian Philosophy – To treat serious matters with cynical good humour.
    Warmies are far too earnest for cynical good humour, which led me to thinking either a lark or a potential nice little earner got out of hand.


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  132. Cash rates for work, a few people around here do cash work, I sometimes need a hand on bigger jobs.

    For $20/hour you get someone (usually) willing to work but no experience and you will have to do a lot of monitoring and supervision and possibly end up with damages equipment.

    $30/hour is the cheapest that anyone good will work for. At that price they do a good job, little or no supervision and will work 8 hours or more.

    This is for relatively unskilled garden, landscape work but where the worker needs to be able to think about how to do the work and the best way to do it.

    I’m starting to charge the customers $100/hour for hand and small machine work, it’s the only way to make money out of it.

    Prior to the wuflu lockdowns and madness I would pay $10 and $20/hour for the same people.


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  133. “Beginning to think they were meant to be one giant piss take.”

    Sadly no. The New Liberals is just another progressive wank outfit made up of entitled and very wealthy north shore and eastern suburbs hypocrites. Warning, warning, beware of anything called “The New”, as with The New Daily, you can be assured it’s an outlet spruiking far-left progressive gunk. These outlets aren’t conservative, they aren’t right-wing, they aren’t even Liberal, they’re Greens.

    The man spruiking the climate alarmism by pretending to drown in the video is named Victor Kline. Where are the bull sharks when you need them? Kline is running against Liberal wet Trent Zimmerman in the electorate of North Sydney. He’s a Barrister who’s been around for yonks. He’s lately been engaged in a spat with Svengali Simon, I suspect Victor wanted to be part of Svengali Simon’s teal troupe but Victor, as you can see, is lacking certain criteria needed/wanted/desired by Svengali Simon in his candidates, mainly a combo of bimboism and estrogen. Victor should have put on a wig, “identified” as a woman, swallowed some estrogen and called himself “Victoria”, perhaps then Svengali Simon might have picked him.


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  134. Hot on the heels of Bill Gates’s GERM team, the World Health Organization is drafting a global pandemic treaty on pandemic preparedness that could grant the agency unprecedented biosecurity powers.

    AusGov will be at the forefront of surrendering sovereignty.


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  135. Tynan believes that the full story of Operation Totem “in all its technical details may never be known”. Her own writing is both constrained and energised by the paucity of publicly available information about the Totem tests, including the black mist that appeared after the explosions. According to Tynan, this strange phenomenon has never been fully explained, or at least not in the public record.

    Wasn’t there a Royal Commission into this in the 1980s? Perhaps that was before Tynan was born, and therefore she was not aware of it?


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  136. Wet, wetter, wettest. Makes perfect sense in the alarmism asylum.

    Whenever the subject of EVs or panels or windmills comes up, I always ask, “do you honestly think any of this will change the weather?”. Never had a “yes” so far.


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  137. Fisher Price Offers RuPaul Drag Queen Set for Littles

    The Fisher Price toy company has been an esteemed part of American childhood for nearly 100 years. Founded during the Great Depression, it has offered educational toys for children since 1930.

    Now it’s offering a different sort of educational product for children: a RuPaul Drag Queen “Little People” set of dolls.

    I wish I was kidding. But I’m not.

    Bowing to the LGBTQ Crowd

    Here’s what Mattel, which now owns Fisher Price, said about its new RuPaul Little People collection:

    “The figure pack honors RuPaul’s efforts to inspire people young and old to be true to themselves.”

    The company added:

    “RuPaul is a pop-culture icon who has been hailed as the best-dressed queen on TV and is coming to life in a whole new way for lip-syncing, runway-slaying fans.”

    Yes, because a drag queen is the ultimate role model for your five-year-old child, right?

    Alternatives to Fisher Price

    Fortunately, parents don’t have to shell out money to Mattel and Fisher Price for quality toys for their kids and grandkids.

    Lego, of course, has offered all sorts of building opportunities for children as young as 18 months to adults. Their themes include Star Wars, Frozen, Minecraft, and Minions, as well as classic architecture and city scenes.

    My grandson loves Legos. But my personal favorite toy sets come from Playmobil.


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    1
  138. Motor racing fans might enjoy the Bathurst 12 hour race currently running in Bathurst, live on Mate.

    The range of cars is small, but the conditions are challenging. It started in the dark at 5 am, featuring rain and fog. It’s still raining but the fog is mostly gone. Not for the faint-hearted.

    Each car has one amateur and one professional driver, with restrictions on how much time each of the two must spend on the track.

    Quite entertaining.


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    3
  139. The truth will out?
    The documentary has already reached 1 million views and already racked up $10 million in revenue. The figures reportedly make it the most successful political documentary since Obama’s America, also directed by D’Souza and released a decade ago.

    “The movie is a success financially for sure, but also it is successful in its political and cultural influence,” said D’Souza. “It’s the most talked about movie out there right now, making headlines in multiple publications, and is trending extremely high on social media.”


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    3
  140. WA cops feeling dejected, burnt out and on the verge of quitting
    Phil HickeyThe West Australian
    Sun, 15 May 2022 2:00AM
    Comments

    WA Police officers are so disillusioned with their jobs they are applying in their hundreds to work as investigators at high-paying mining companies.

    It follows a damning WA Police Union survey released this week which found morale within the force had reached an all-time low.

    Reliable sources have revealed there have been at least 194 resignations so far this year. That’s about 10 per week.

    One officer said they were aware of over 100 cops having recently applied for an investigator role at a major mining company – such is the large number of officers wanting to quit.

    “There is real discontent within the ranks in metro,” the officer said.

    Police Commissioner Chris Dawson is on leave before he takes up the position of WA Governor in July, but WA’s acting commissioner Col Blanch – the man widely tipped to replace him – says the number of cops on the street has never been higher and that “good people” are still being attracted to the job.

    “We have more police on the streets than ever before. But policing is a tough job and it requires significant resilience,” Mr Blanch said this week.

    However, many serving WA officers who spoke to The West Australian on the condition of anonymity confirmed the dark mood of the rank and file.

    “Morale is extremely low and I am a little surprised the results weren’t worse,” one detective said yesterday.

    Latest available figures show assaults on cops are climbing.

    Between July last year and the end of March this year there were 902 assault police officer offences in WA. That’s about 100 per month.

    There were 1092 assault police officer offences – an average of about 90 per month – in 2020/2021. The financial year prior there were 1002 such cases.

    An ongoing crime wave in the Pilbara, escalating violence in late night precincts and a perceived lack of trust between frontline cops and the WA Police Force hierarchy has also put additional strain on the men and women in blue.

    “Every day more and more is asked of us. More jobs, more paperwork and more responsibility, but less resources, officers and support. It is like nothing I’ve ever experienced in my entire career,” one officer, who has been in the job for over 20 years, said.

    “You go to work dejected. You know you’ll get on (duty) and there will be job after job after job.”



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    1
  141. We also give money to India and they have an advanced space program. Our entire aid budget needs a complete revision.

    As I’ve noted before, aid is not about aid, it’s about projecting soft power in our region.


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    1
  142. My grandson loves Legos

    My oldest grandson is into Lego, and every time we go over I have to build something with him.

    Long story short, after 50 years, I bought my own set, and I have now built for myself the Lego Crocodile loco and have a few non genuine locos on order( a German 99.72 2-10-2 tank engine and Sd70 diesel — very very tempted by the Big Boy). The idea is to have a lego train running under the Christmas tree for Christmas and add each years Christmas themed set to the collection. We have last year’s set put away in storage. Which we are getting closer to getting it out from as
    thankfully our slab finally went down week before last, just before Queensland Rainageddon 22.2 and only 4 months behind schedule ( it was supposed to go down in the week before Christmas , sigh)


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  143. Interesting to see today’s Sunday Mail editorial supporting Coalition over Labor.

    I know many here want to punish Coalition for various reasons but my way of looking at it is simple. With Qld, VIC, SA, WA and NT being run by Labor the country can’t afford to have them in power federally at the same time.

    Another view is compare who will be Cabinet members from both sides. Most of the Labor side make me cringe.

    Marles in Defence, Wong Foreign Minister and Keneally Homeland is too much to contemplate.


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  144. RIP Andrew Symonds. According to channel 9 he died in a car accident last night.

    An exceptional 1 day cricketer. Would be in our greatest 1 day cricket 11.


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  145. Via Instapundit, the writer is complaining about the exorbitant cost of tickets to see Paul McCartney. He’s right the prices are ridiculous however the reasons why are sensible. Once these music acts made their money off the record sales, tours were used to promote an album and so were relatively cheap. I’m sure many here can remember seeing world class acts in small stadiums and halls around Australia in the 70’s. In Melbourne we had Festival Hall and the Music Bowl, there were a few at other places. Led Zeppelin at Kooyong were amazing, all small compared to todays mega concerts and cheap, I think I paid $13 to see CCR at Festival Hall and the other concerts were much the same.

    No money in recordings now, it’s the show that brings in the big bucks.


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  146. “We have more police on the streets than ever before. But policing is a tough job and it requires significant resilience,” Mr Blanch said this week.

    Those maskless pensioners aren’t going to beat themselves up you know!


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    8
  147. Andrew Symonds death: Former Australian cricketer passes away in tragic car accident

    Robert Craddock
    Senior sports journalist
    News Corp Australia Sports Newsroom
    13 minutes ago May 15, 2022
    No Comments

    The cricket world is in mourning today following the death of popular former Test allrounder Andrew Symonds in a car accident.

    Symonds was involved in an accident outside Townsville where he lived in retirement.

    The flamboyant allrounder was one of cricket’s most popular characters during the peak of his career.

    The accident happened at 10.30pm on Saturday night in a single-car crash.

    Symonds’ family issued a statement confirming his passing and appreciated peoples’ sympathy and best wishes, and asked that their privacy be respected.

    He played 26 Tests and was a crucial member of Australia’s all-conquering one-day side that enjoyed World Cup glory.



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  148. Thanks for the tip, fdb, anything with meat makes my day.

    We’re in Washington DC for five days, flyingduk, although I’ve worked there before, so have been to most great places. Will be going to several Smithsonians again.


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  149. Thanks, Bear at 8.50am. Paywallian:

    The cricket world is in mourning today following the death of popular former Test allrounder Andrew Symonds in a car accident.

    Symonds was involved in an accident outside Townsville where he lived in retirement.

    The flamboyant allrounder was one of cricket’s most popular characters during the peak of his career.

    The accident happened at 10.30pm on Saturday night in a single-car crash.

    Symonds’ family issued a statement confirming his passing and appreciated peoples’ sympathy and best wishes, and asked that their privacy be respected.

    He played 26 Tests and was a crucial member of Australia’s all-conquering one-day side that enjoyed World Cup glory.


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    1
  150. Roger, I agree but I cannot see how aid to India and many other places is justified.

    Think of it as pay for access.

    It means when we go to India with a request, the door is open.

    That’s the way it’s supposed to work, anyway.

    When it doesn’t you have to resort to other means, which the Solomons may soon discover.


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  151. Liberal Party campaign launch today. I look forward to Scotty apologising for everything. He’s already apologised for being a bulldozer but the word “bulldozer” implies that there was and is something there to bulldoze. There’s been nothing left in the Liberal Party since September 2015, it’s an empty shell. The words I’d use to describe Scumbag are capitulator, appeaser, submitter and wrecker. He’s going to gift us Albanese as PM. Thanks Scumbag.

    However before he packs his bags and leaves the lodge, Scumbag actually does owe an apology to a few people, people he’s casually thrown to the lions….

    1. Cardinal Pell,
    2. Bettina Arndt,
    3. Craig Kelly,
    4. George Christensen,
    5. Christian Porter,
    6. Christine Holgate,
    7. Alan Tudge,
    8. our SAS soldiers,
    9. the accused in the Higgins’ trial,
    10. the people of Victoria, for standing by and saying nothing when Victorians endured the longest lockdown on the planet and when Victorians were subjected to the violent actions of Dan’s private paramilitary goons, and
    11. the Australian people, for the destruction of federation, for lying about vaccine mandates…..for everything.

    The truth is that Morrison has been an utter disgrace, an appeaser who’s fed the crocodile, hoping it will eat him last. The crocodile is smiling because he knows what his next meal course is. He’s hungry.


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  152. Roger, I can understand it with our near neighbours, but India? WTF should we pay for access?

    That’s the way the world works, esp. the 3rd world.

    It’s not a moral argument, it’s a pragmatic one.

    There are some fairly cogent moral arguments against any international aid at the inter-governmental level, actually.


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  153. It will be along shortly.
    “But what caused an otherwise fit and healthy 46 year old teetotaler to drive off a straight dry road in clear conditions?”


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