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The Magpie

Saturday, October 13th, 2018   |   165 comments

Could There Be Commercial Advertising On The Castle Hill Rock Face A La The Sydney Opera House? Could Be On The Cards, Says The Council.

Yup, Deputy DooDah Les ‘Messagebank’ Walker topped a week of bumbling about filling in for Mayor Mullet by telling us council would consider any application for such a move. This was the highlight of an entertaining week from our fill-in Goof In Chief while resident wonder woman Mayor Mullet was away being wander woman somewhere. The ‘Pie chronicles Les’s thigh slapping audition for the top role in the long-running drama/comedy Townsville: A Tragedy In Three Acts.

But The Magpie thinks a little lateral thinking is needed on the advertising/sponsorship issue, and has a scheme that could save ratepayers millions.

One possible mayoral challenger leaves the field … liquidation lawyer and LNP stalwart Michael Brennan tells The ‘Pie why he won’t be challenging Mayor Mullet at the ballot box.

Maggie Island gets glowing national exposure … but of the sort that will damage the island’s long term viability and goodwill.

A mirthful week ends with an award winner you JUST WILL NOT BELIEVE …

  and here’s a scoop for regular readers … has The Magpie finally caught up with Ms Lou in person?

So first ….

That Sinking Feeling …

A vital matter on the national scene, the ups and downs of our planned submarine fleet, caught Bentley’s attention this week. While Christopher Pyne runs around doing his prissy head prefect thing with the Frogs over the sub contract, Bentley is convinced that the Defence Minister has missed a crucial aspect of the drawn-out timeline – decades, in fact – and in the end, we wind up still with diesel-powered submersibles. And Bentley thinks that’s short sighted in more ways than one.

subs fin

And was that Ms Lou, and did we have a freezing good time of it? You’ll never know, a GentlePie never kisses and tells … but he was a bit disappointed at her inner thigh tattoo “US Navy Visit 1975 … The Fleet’s In!”

Oh, well, plenty more penguins on the peninsula.

The Man Who Would Be Mayor Struts His Stuff …But Keeps Stubbing His Toe.

Deputy Doo Dah Les Messagebank Walker

Deputy Doo Dah Les Messagebank Walker

That is, when his foot isn’t in his mouth. Messagebank Walker has been making an hilarious audition for the top job while filling in for Mayor Mullet. But, as so often happens with auditions, on his bumbling efforts’ Les will be getting the ‘we’ll call you don’t you call us’ routine come next election day. His childish ham acting and total unawareness of his own absurdity is both touching and alarming … not to mention pantswettingly funny.

You’ll remember last week, he kicked off with some bizarre chortling about local business people ‘loving it’ – the it being that the council was fixing up the total fuck up of a footpath repair in Mooney Street. ‘Businesses are loving it,’ Messagebank gurgled, clearly not getting the message from irate local bizoids who lost custom through the cock up. But he was undeterred, and while The Mullet’s away, Messagebank will play. And play he did, albeit all the while suffering from the same baby bump on the head that has clearly damaged his cognitive ability to recognise the bleedin’ obvious.

A couple of days ago, the council tried to sugar coat a back flip on the clusterfuck that is the kerbside rubbish collection, as Tony Raggatt reported : A FREE hard waste collection service operated by Townsville City Council is being improved after complaints from the public claimed the city’s streets were looking like dumps. The council’s water and waste services has reviewed the scheme and presented options to the council cutting the time frame for collection to times outside of the cyclone season and reducing the number of collection zones to try and make it easier for people to know when to put unwanted goods out on the footpath.’ These were exactly all the things that were put forward by concerned folks, and not just The Magpie in this very blog, when Mayor Mullet bulldozed this populist nonsense  through. 

But what did our deputy DooDah say about this embarrassing backdown in the face of glaringly foreseeable problems. Quote:’ … mostly the feedback from people have been fantastic … we have taken on board all the community feedback and we will make changes to improve the service.’ Yes, mate, feedback that was glaringly available BEFORE this idea was rolled out. And one can imagine the ‘fantastic’ element of said feedback.

Now by any normal measure, this is clearly a failure of the council to listen to sensible voices and have reasonable debate on an issue before jackbooting it through. This is a tactic all too familiar from this council … you’ll remember a year or so ago, the Eyre Street free fringe car park was turned into a paid parking area, with the instant result of being totally shunned by motorists and workers …

IMG_112eyre st parking8

… who instead opted to overcrowd the free parking opposite at the amusingly named Mike Reynolds Early Childhood Learning Centre (he repeated several times) and to battle with visitors for spots on the Strand. Clr Frothy Molochino got stroppy with The ‘Pie via the council’s media people when challenged about his outright lie he gave for the change, an absurd statement that it was made ‘after consultation with CBD business people and stakeholders’ … yeah sure, they were just crying out for yet another stumbling block to a CBD revival. Anyway, after a disastrous six to nine months of complete emptiness and no income despite expensive meter installation, the car park was quietly reinstated as a free area, although the council did it quietly and were very unhappy that The ‘Pie loudly reported this proof of venal idiocy.

But the same arrogant mindset lives on between Messagebank’s addled ears. And his disdain for the intelligence of the average punter is astounding. Earlier this week, he chased some cheap publicity spruiking a footy carnival for oldies next year. Not happy with letting the good(ish) news speak for itself, he couldn’t help himself, so added Council fights to secure these major events for Townsville because they help boost business and create jobs for locals.” That was a lazy lie, as The ‘Pie said in comments:

Answer this Goofy – what jobs will be ‘created for locals’ by this carnival? Hint: the answer is the same as the number of clues you have … none.”

Screen Shot 2018-10-10 at 9.11.45 am

But the crowning bit nincompooperary came when an Astonisher reporter trotted around to seek a reaction to the kerffufle about advertising on the Sydney Opera House. Could it happen here, on the Castle Hill Escarpment, the reporter wanted to know. Now, even Mayor Mullet would get this one right – as in ‘No friggin’ way’ – but this quarter-wit deputy mayor opted to take a pot shot at his own foot. Instead of a simple ‘no’,  our man quoth loftily: ‘The council will take everything on board and a make a decision on merit. I’m not going to get involved in what ifs,” he intoned. Ignoring the fact that you ARE IN THE BUSINESS OF  WHAT IFS, LES – it’s called local politics, matey – you have plainly said that it’s a possibility.

And the paer’s reporter missed it! Just reported the words, but didn’t get the real meaning. The ‘Pie eagerly awaits approval of such a move and the subsequent Les’s backdown because of ‘fantastic feedback’. Mayor Mullet must be laughing her tits off, wherever she is. You’d almost think she planned this … oh, wait sec …. hmm.

How’s Spooky Is This?

Renowned cartoonist, the late Paul Rigby, was somewhat of a seer. He foresaw the Opera House row …. back in 1974!!!

DpMsbgJV4AAJlMBThe Council And Advertising: How We Could Save Money And Face

But the whole business about advertising and government got The Magpie thinking about possibilities that could benefit the whole community.

So how about getting rid of all those developers, urgers, white shoe builders of battery factories and smarmy insultants  (read consultants) making donations, all running around with brown paper bags, plane tickets and restaurant credit cards … why not come out in the open and just find a suitable sponsor for the Townsville City Council? All above board, all open, no back room deals needed, the sponsorship guarantees contracts in the advertisers field of operation. In fact, The ‘Pie reckons he knows precisely the perfect fit for  an official sponsor for the Townsville City Council.


Of course, this would involve  a debate, and a pretty heated one at that … The ‘Pie imagines The Impaler will have her hands full keeping order.


BTW Clr Jacob was the only councillor to come out with a flat ’no way’ to ‘badvertising’ on Castle Hill … all the other drones couldn’t check with the Mullet about the right line to take, apparently.

Michael Brennan Decides Not To Challenge Mayor Mullet

Michael Brennan

Michael Brennan

He toyed with the idea but it seems he never really had his heart in it, so now, the lawyer/liquidator Michael Brennan has decided against having a tilt at Walker Street. He was seriously considering it but was always realistic about his chances, particularly being heavily involved in the LNP and the electorate’s growing disenchantment with big party involvement in the TCC. Mr Brennan told an inquiring Magpie that the workload at his job at Offermans (they are liquidators … no wonder he’s busy) and his consideration for family life with the kids and new partner Casie Scott had to take precedence. But The ‘Pie reckons he may well be in the saddle again in a back room capacity … Ms Scott gave Captain Cupcake, the tremendously disappointing Scott Stewart, a  close run in the seat of Townsville in 2017, and the last The ‘Pie heard, she was determined to have another crack at the George Street plush. As things stand at the moment, she’d be a good bet to snatch the seat, but three years, let alone a week, is a long time in politics.

Other potential mayoral candidates are scuttling around behind the political skirting boards, but every single prospect to whom The ‘Pie has spoken is terrified of the Mullet and her proven vicious and vindictive political nature. Most being business people, they quote off the record instances of what can happen if you cross Madam Mullet. That is all understandable, but in terms of timing, someone needs to emerge and put together a team in the next three months … many campaign opportunities are being sorely missed, and believe it or not, the Bulletin is crying out for a go-to person to counter-balance some of the excesses of their unofficial honorary associate editor in Walker Street. The cracks in that relationship are starting to show. The example set by the Federal LNP candidate for Herbert demonstrates what is being lost at the local level … he’s getting lots of column inches putting the boot into The Tool.

Until then, you’ll just have to stick with The Magpie for any balance. You’ll be in a top-notch company … the old bird has it on good authority that Messagebank reads it (a former fellow councillor tells The ‘Pie that Les angrily denies this … and then quotes chunks verbatim – he really is an idiot),  and the Mullet gets someone else to report to her the contents of the Nest. Just before darts her weekly practice.

Maggie Island Or Fantasy Island?

One of the tricks of tourism promotion is to get inside the heads of those in the target market, which is in our case, are the masses huddled around their two-bar heaters as the rain and sleet pelts down in the large southern cities – an established  north Queenslander’s  fantasy of life anywhere south of about Gladstone. No one at the Dudley’s seems to have twigged that no one is going to part with their readies and hop a plane here just to visit Paluma, stroll along the Strand or  count For Lease signs in the CBD. 

But Maggie Island is the goods, a bit tatty maybe, but a seemingly idyllic break from the drawbacks of southern existence. But here’s the thing that no one around here really understands … over-selling – a TEL/Bulletin/Mullet speciality – is as damaging as underselling, as Mike Shearer discovered this weekend. 

Most readers will know that regular Nester Mike rarely becomes a shirty Shearer, but he was so mightily miffed with the Weekend Australian that he has dashed off a searing note to the paper. His email is self-explanatory.


Misleading information


Sat, 13 Oct 2018


Mike Shearer


Susan Kurosawa email hidden; JavaScript is required

Hello Susan,

in the Travel and Indulgence liftout in the Weekend Australian for 13-14 October on page 12 there’s a snippet by Kendall Hill on Magnetic Island.  I happen to live in Townsville and am familiar with the island.  And I happen to agree that Magnetic Island is special, but it doesn’t need to be praised misleadingly and with lies.  Kendall states: “More than two-thirds  of the island is national park and it’s surrounded by the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef.” That is misleading nonsense.  The GBR is many many kilometers away, several hours in fact by fast catamaran.  The island’s fringing reefs have been almost completely destroyed by silt from periodic dredging of the Townsville port channel.  There are long-term government-sponsored projects to try to restore them.

He also refers to “… koala-infested forest.”  Oh yeah?  There are (introduced) koalas on the island, but you’d be lucky to sight more than one or two on any walk through the thin scrub (not forest).  And there’s mention of “two dozen beaches, all of them fronting the reef…”.  There’s only twelve that by any usual definition qualify as beaches, and half of them can be accessed only by boat.  Not one of them “fronts the reef” by which is implied the GBR.

That there can be so many errors and so much misleading information in just 4 column-inches about a destination that I know, then I don’t see how I can trust any other information included in Travel and Indulgence.  Especially anything written by “Melbourne travel and food writer Kendall Hill”.

Why is it that so many trusted institutions and sources of information are currently being shown as shonky and untrustworthy?  

Mike Shearer


One wonders if TEL put Kendall Hill up to this with some inducement. It would be an expensive mistake, because you fool people once, they won’t just never return, they’ll also talk about it, and that can be ruinous in this age of social media.

But really, it is hard to believe that someone named Hill would tell lies about Townsville or Maggie. Isn’t it?

But We Know All About False Hopes, Don’t We?

Giving people false hope is never a sound policy for success or credibility, but no one seems to have told the Bulletin this anytime in the last six years. But iditor Jenna The Jester Cairney  regularly dons the straw hat, candy-striped blazer and  twirls the cane while warbling a reprise that happy days are (almost, nearly, soon, perhaps) here again. And every time she does it, readers retreat, usually to the Courier. Her iditorial during the week enraged one Magpie nester.


email hidden; JavaScript is required

Submitted on 2018/10/12 at 10:05 am

This confirms (again) just how out of touch from reality the Bullsheet is …. here’s what the Iditor is saying: “it’s fair to say for a lot of people this year didn’t quite deliver on expectations.”


Actually, it did deliver exactly as expected for those not blinded by the inability to see past the nonsense, obfuscation, baloney and downright untruths coming from the Gormless Gang at Walker St and the bluff and blunder of the Dudley Do Nothings …

And he/she might have added coming from the Bulletin itself, clearly in the thrall of the panicked advertisering executives. The iditorial included as a the conclusive indicator of prosperous times around the corner, a crane had arrived at the Mater Hospital extension site! True!

But our Jester doubled down, with a Saturday iditorial so saccharine it was a danger to diabetics …

Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.48.07 pm

First time in ages, my cloaca … that’s sort of codswallop has been standard fare for the paper for the last three years or more … and a front page more heavily qualified than a policeman’s promise.

Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.37.19 am

The courage of one’s convictions is hardly boosted by the terms ‘on the rise’, ‘senses change’ (that last one of a solid citizen  but one that made his money out of selling shiny trinkets to people … a sort of businessman version of Mayor Mullet) and ‘edges closer’  … as usual, nothing definitive, nothing too closely examined, and almost nothing to provide balance. Really, you sometimes have to question the sanity of people who plop into the iditor’s chair at the Astonisher. And ignoring reality – albeit currently an unpalatable reality – at the expense of false and deeply questionable, mostly empty boosterism is not what a paper of record is, or should be, about … and that does no service to this community.

And an example of that blithe disdain for reality pushed by the paper is a statement that deserves the Spin of the Month gong. Carl Valentine, of PVW Partners which conducts business confidence surveys, produced a neat double negative while stretching for a positive when he told the paper that when people were asked about the Port’s channelling widening project ‘None of those surveyed thought the project was not important to the future of the region.’  Whatever the fuck that means.

Clown noses all round.

Speaking Of Clowning Around …

Sometimes, things just fall into the lap of columnists like The Magpie, and a beauty kerplunked into the Nest this very morning. Beaking around the web, The ‘Pie almost had a panic attack, thinking he suddenly had a competitor in the cynically sarcastic market when he saw this.

Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.20.52 am

The name Beckett excited The ‘Pie’s attention, so he checked out what Ms Baguley was on about. And glad he did, it was the roll about laughing snippet of the year, if not the decade. Talk about truth is not always the truth.

Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.02.15 am

(Gasp, snurffle, choke …) One imagines Townsville just pipped Ipswich and Logan for the gong. After he could stop laughing long enough to approach the keyboard again, The ‘Pie realised there was something a bit sus about Ms Baguley’s unfettered enthusiasm, so poking around he found this.

Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.05.11 am

Seems our Jayde was brown-nosing the boss for some in-house brownie points . Her self-description hardly inspires confidence … putting the word ‘qualified’ in front of journalist suggests that somewhere out there are some unqualified journalists, but not sure what that entails. Check it out with Anthony Simpo Templeton, presumably he’s your boss. And piling on the irony, that bumf about Stand For The Silent (BLD) is about an anti-bullying organisation. Your in the right place to do some good if you work for the Impaler’s council, m’dear.Around 500 of your former colleagues could do with a little standing up for.

Hey, maybe The ‘Pie qualifies to be unqualified … he never went to uni and in fact is largely self-educated, having left school at 13. Hey, Jayde, perhaps we can catch up sometime, and you can give me some tips on how to become a qualified journalist.

And as chance would have it, all this in the week that The ‘Pie came across a tweet from Stephen The Screaming Midget Beckett, the new Mullet whisperer, lamenting a ‘wardrobe malfunction’ with his running shorts when out jogging.

Stephen Becket

Stephen Becket – a face only a mother could etc

Well, Stevie, thanks for keeping the camera no lower than chest height, but given that you no doubt wrote out the entry details for that PR award, is it little wonder your pants caught fire?

A Question In Passing

More trouble with Astonisher photo captioning. Pondered this during the week.

Screen Shot 2018-10-10 at 9.51.18 am

OK, but is this bloke the stabber or the stabee? The assailant or the victim? We can guess, but we shouldn’t have to … these things will one day cost the paper money. Which ever, he looks a charmer.

And another Astonisher story makes life in the Singapore Army sound like fun or hell, depending on your orientation. This sounds really painful

 Screen Shot 2018-10-13 at 8.30.54 am

Finally, This Week’s Sampler From Trumpitania

177_216592 20181004edbbc-a 20181004edstc-a sbr100918dapr 141_216341 Angry white male


Hey, that’s it for a bumper issue, and the comments are coming thick and fast, and even a bit of fur flying around … jump in yourself if you’re game.

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The Magpie's Nest is now more than five years old, and remains an independent alternative voice for Townsville. The weekly warble is a labour of love and takes a lot of time to put together. So if you like your weekly load of old cobblers, you can help keep it aloft with a donation, or even a regular voluntary subscription. Paypal is at the ready, it's as easy as ... well, easy as pie. Limited advertising space is also available.


  1. Cajun says:

    I was very sorry when Michael said he couldn’t run for Mayor … apart from him being a very entertaining speaker, I can’t help feeling his professional talents in being able to take over poorly performing businesses and turn them around, would have come in very handy!

  2. Cantankerous but happy says:

    The position of that dragon at the council meeting looks like it’s just about to shit all over Mark Molachinos head, might help fill up the empty space in it.

  3. J jones says:

    Wow how many hours work did you do for that one Pieman?

  4. No more dredging says:

    ” . . . and the electorate’s growing disenchantment with big party involvement in the TCC. Mr Brennan told an inquiring Magpie that the workload at his job at Offermans (their liquidators … no wonder he’s busy) . . ”

    ‘Pie, unless Offermans are the liquidators for TCC, and that really would be news, I think there’s a sub-editor’s slip-up inside the brackets. Bentley’s got a nuclear one too.

    But I’m more interested in beach-counter Mike Shearer’s shortage of fingers and toes. I remember when the brochures used to say Maggie Island had “23 beaches” but I never got around to checking. So here goes – anti-clockwise – look on Google if you really need to:

    Cockle, Picnic, Rocky, Nelly, Geoffrey, Alma, Arthur, Florence, Gowrie, Radical, Balding, White Lady, Horseshoe, Lovers, Bay of Five Beaches (Maud, Norris, Joyce, Wilson, Huntingfield), Rollingstone, West Point, Young Bay and Bolger Bay. That’s 23 sandy beaches, all World Heritage listed, all fronting the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

    • The Magpie says:

      You son of a beach, you!!!

    • Mike Shearer says:

      I checked the National Parks and Wildlife Service map and you’re pretty close to the 24 that could be listed. In the context of the Oz article which regarding the beaches says “… you’ll leave the first footprints in the sand.” – that is, if you can get to the beach, which for the southern tourists for whom the article is written cuts out quite a lot. But I concede to your accuracy, and won’t debate the number.

      • No more dredging says:

        Mike, I might have slipped in Whitfield Cove which would have fitted in just after Alma Bay but it would probably have got the whiners going about whether it was really a ‘sandy’ beach. So I left it out. Also left out Smugglers Cove – part of Florence Bay. Many people would not have heard of Gowrie Bay around the corner from Florence but it really is a pretty little site which just happens to catch the flotsam (whale bones, turtle shells, boat bits, logs, thongs, plastic bottles etc) hanging in that exposed place with a SE aspect. Let’s just celebrate Magnetic Island’s very special and diverse natural and cultural heritage and leave the tourism marketers to do their best.

        • FNQ says:

          Lets not forget Martha, next to / adjoining Arthur.

          More the point Mike what the hell are you doing… All this town tries to do is promote itself down south or pretty much anywhere it can. Tourism at last count wasn’t quite 10% of the towns GDP and you want to go shooting it down over bays, koalas and reefs.

          Mate get a boat or find a mate with one, put on your double pluggers and go for a walk on one of the trails on the Island, there are kangaroos, wallabies, cockatoo’s and koalas everywhere.

          The island is two thirds forest you moron. Its called national park.

          Magnetic island is on the Great barrier reef and sits in a marine park, you want a reef and to hand feed bat fish, go to Florence bay. take a picnic and you will end up feeding the sea eagle as well.

          Furthermore its the only freehold island in the great barrier reef. Yes it is, the others are leasehold. You seriously have no idea how good you’ve got it and clearly don’t use it. Where else in the world can you be the only footsteps on the beach for an entire morning or even day…

          The town does very well during winter with southern tourists many of whom own residences here that they rent out 10 months a year and use 4 for themselves. Lets not try and discourage them.

          We are are so far behind Cairns these days its laughable. The last thing we need is negative wankers talking down the Island. The real diamond in the rough.

          Be proud of where you live, or seriously……fuck off.

          • The Magpie says:

            Eloquent … but The ‘Pie is most impressed with your rewriting of the calendar to have 14 months to the year.

  5. One legged tap dancer says:

    The Astonisher has once again failed to tell the whole story.
    In reporting on the TEL annual knees-up and awards night, the usual suspects got a gong in the Dudley (short for Dudley Do Nothing) Awards.
    But our biased source of local news and views, either on purpose or through incompetence – its hard to tell these days), failed to reveal these other high profile winners:
    Originality Award – Pure Projects for coming up with the brilliant concept of building a lagoon on The Strand – the first of its kind in err… Townsville.
    Best Team Effort – Mayor Mullet, Patricia Puppet and the other begging bowl boofheads who flew to Canberra at public expense to plead for government funding but returned home with err… nothing.
    Best Individual Promotion – Patricia Puppet for her cardboard cutout helicopter tour which caused the city’s name change from Townsville to Boganville.
    Best Group Promotion – Mayor Mullet and her sidekick Cr Margie Ryder for their attempt to get a Crocodile Dundee movie sequel shot in Boganville, despite the fact no sequel was even planned.
    Best New Talent – Messagebank Walker who has been shown in cameo appearances as acting mayor over the past few months to be a worthy replacement for our bumbling Mayor Mullet.
    Best International Tourism Strategy – Townsville Airport boss and TEL chairman Kevin Gill for single handedly convincing Qantas to ditch its Jetstar direct flights to Bali. Judges described his strategic move to block the Qantas Club lounge entrance with seating as “a game changer”.
    Mayor Mullet also received a Highly Commended certificate in this category for her brilliant tactical move in calling for a boycott of Qantas. Judges said she would have shared the award with Gill had she not since returned to the trough at the Qantas Club.

    • The Magpie says:

      You failed to mention that Lil Patty and some of her crew made a second return visit to Canberra, mentioned in the Astonisher this week … must be a fav restaurant down there. When are we going to insist on KPI’s for these freeloaders?

      • I'll be plucked says:

        Pie, the saddest thing about TEL and their crew is they think their doing a great job!!! Problem is, nobody knows what, why or their benefit to our sinking city!

        • funnyuntilsomeonelosesaneye says:

          Perhaps the bigger question should be asked – what will Townsville lose if we did not have TEL? Would we actually suffer or go backwards? I suggest not.

          Gill needs to redo his AICD Directors course to grasp that it is not a Chair’s role to be involved in the day to day operations of the business. You would also have to think there is a very large conflict of interest where TEL resources are used for QAL activities, but hey conflicts of interest do not seem to matter in this town.

          I agree that the sad part is they actually believe they make all the difference. This is what happens when the same kids only hang out with each other (TEL, TAPL, TCC), they feed off their own self congratulations. Lets cut through the crap, perhaps a Mayoral candidate might suggest a review of TEL via a business community engagement survey. I would suggest this should be done routinely to justify to ratepayers why TCC continue to fund the organisation.

          • The Magpie says:

            Well, Spearchucker, you are almost word perfect in the song The Magpie has been singing here for the past eight years. The ‘Pie is well aware that there are some … repeat SOME – good and professional people within the TEL ranks ( the board is specifically EXCLUDED from that assessment) but they are lacking correct focus and guidance from professional leadership. When Patricia O’Callaghan was a financially expedient choice for CEO – leap-frogging at least two far better qualified candidates, presumably on salary grounds – she can’t be blamed for the grabbing the pot of gold she is clearly not entitled to. It would’ve been a highly principled person with moral discipline to not even apply for the position, let alone turn it down on the grounds that it was a task beyond her.

            TEL can be useful, but a total restructure, re-focus, and redefining of the relationship with TCC as well as all other contributing councils is an absolute necessity.

            If only the Bulletin could undergo the same epiphany.

    • Grumpy says:

      Really, OLTD? She has gone back to slurping up the gluggy rice in the Q Club? Verified sighting? I am a frequent visitor there and have not seen her. When I do, I will walk out and let staff know why.

      • Cantankerous but happy says:

        Indeed, I also cast an eagle eye over the Q club as I walk through, just to see who’s not supposed to be there and I can’t recall the Mullet for quite some time. Prize airhead Cathy O” Toole is a regular, normally sitting there with her husband, tucked away in the corner, she gets there early as well, I was on a mid morning to Cairns and she was already in there waiting for the 11.30to Brisbane, nearly another 2 hours away.

  6. Bentley says:


    • The Magpie says:

      Don’t worry, you’re in – ahem – good company.

      • What water crisis Jenny & Les? says:

        Council keeps advertising they are all for LOCAL jobs jobs jobs and “jobs flow from new water pipeline”. Council should say jobs jobs jobs for the impaler’s old stomping ground, Adelaide. Council even advertises on the radio saying they will link job seekers with employers! Well why save a lousy 30 Million dollars to build an unproven 1800 plastic pipe in Adelaide and then transport here? Hope there are no BPAs in it! I suppose Adelaide gets the repair work too when the pipes are damaged. Imagine the wait for that. I suppose we can go back to our old wasteful pipe while we are waiting for repairs of the new pipe. Imagine the flow of jobs for locals if a proven cement/steel pipe had been built here. Councilshould have a new campaign jobs jobs jobs for Adelaide…

  7. upagumtreeperson says:

    The usual incite full analysis of local doings, Magpie. Last local election I voted for Jane Arlett for mayor. any news if she would consider running again? I think you need a business person to run the show. I would never vote for the socialist team at TCC. Long live free enterprise.

    • The Magpie says:

      Heard she’s considering it, but no decision yet. there are rumblings among a few others as well. But it is now extractus digitas time for whomsoever has the fortitude to stand against this ruinous scandal of a council.

      • What water crisis Jenny &Les says:

        Where would Townsville be today if Jayne Arlett was Mayor? We would probably have long term water security instead of a partly constructed white elephant called a stadium. One thing we have learnt the painful way is NEVER vote for a team in local elections. It will become a dictatorship and their employers the rate/taxpayer will be screwed over and voiceless for 4 years. Please Jayne give Townsville another chance…..

        • No more dredging says:

          What water crisis, if you want to ponder a world where Jayne Arlett had been elected mayor you also have to plug in whether she has her ‘team’ elected with her. It might be a bit weird if Arlett was mayor and all the councillors were from the Hill team. So in the next election, would you suggest that Arlett (or anyone else for that matter) run for mayor on her own without a ‘team’ or should she do the same as last time? It’s an important question because it is very difficult to mount (and fund) an election campaign from scratch without some sort of supporting apparatus, including some other candidates for councillor who will support your ‘party’ if you get into ‘government’. One thing’s for sure, electors want to believe that rates will not rise, council employment numbers will not sink, services will increase and everyone will be happy. It’s a pretty tall order, especially if you also promise some sort of water security, a new road, bridge or dam, a better airport/train station/bus interchange or commuter rail motors to Charters Towers.

          • The Magpie says:

            There some obvious answers to your valid questions, but The ‘Pie is not going to spike the guns of a challenger with some timely strategies that are possible.

            But one thing you may be interested to know … The ‘Pie has heard that there are definitely three, and possibly more, current councillors less than thrilled with Mayor Mullet’s performance, and are considering moves of possible self preservation … Jacob has already shown this tendency, but for pretty obvious ulterior motives. This pretty solid info is also bolstered by the manner in which Hill had to scramble to get a full team … Soars was a reluctant trooper to start with, and one female councillor wais in it for the money plain and simple.But Molochino is an Oliver Twist … he wants more … and certainly harbours ambitions for higher office. But the one everybody should keep in plain sight and face-on is Ryder … The ‘Pie’s info is that she is a dangerous person who will grab a wedge if she sees one.

            Then of course, The Impaler will play whatever political cards she can from the sideline, because her future would look shaky indeed if the right new team takes office.

            Dolan and The Screaming Midget will be burning a lot of midnight oil between now and March 2020.

        • I'll be plucked says:

          Agreed! Where the pluck are ya Jayne – come out, come out wherever you are! PLEASE!

      • The Rolling Eye says:

        If Lanceni ran he’d absolutley wipe the floor.

      • upagumtreeperson says:

        I know Jane Arlett through business and she is a savvy business woman. Would make a great independent mayor.

        • The Magpie says:

          That she is an intelligent businesswoman is clear from her record, but business experience is only one of several other equally important attributes. Clear and financially sound business decisions by councils need to be tempered by other basic considerations and community involvement. And whether Ms Arlett will listen to sound political advice she may not readily agree with (The ‘Pie understands it may have been her back room adviser Kid Crisafulli who suggested she pound the water issue, and needed to be convinced of the smarts of the move) is another question – she is a very independently minded person, that is obvious. Ms Arlett will really need to take the community along with her if she is to make another run for Walker Street, and do it across a broad spectrum of issues … her failure last time was in part being seen as a one trick pony.

          • Grumpy says:

            She has a lot going for her – female, gay, not unattractive – all she has to do is develop a limp and she’s a dead cert…except for the fact that she’s got no mongrel in her. If she is going to win against the current bogan haridan, she needs to drop the nice girl image and become a beatch. And listen to her political advisers.

            Labor is expert at the art of the deceitful attack ad. Mediscare anyone? Conservatives (at least in Australia) don’t have a fucking clue. They almost handed the last federal election to Shorten because they would not highlight the negatives about him – eg his vile treatment of the lowest paid workers when he was a self-interested union thug, his political opportunism, insincerity and lack of economic credentials. Christ, imagine how the US media would respond to Kathy’s allegations against him, if made today. In this “me too” era, i dai pinis by the 11:00 PM news.

            I was holding my breath waiting for the attack ads to be aired in both the fed and local elections. All I got was emphysema. I am willing to bet London to a brick that the same will happen next time at both levels. We will not hear anything about the overpowering stench of corruption, the jobs for the boys, the workplace bullying, the sackings, the breath-takingly incompetent financial management, the lack of real representation by the current crop of clowns (looking at you, Soy-Boy Mark), political favours in exchange for favourable treatment, and whatever else that you shall only read here.

            Even if by a miracle we do, I would still despair for the local electorate. All you need do is promise them a pony and lots of free stuff and they shall follow you blindly to Koppenburg Mountain.

          • Alahazbin says:

            And she would give the Impaler a run for her money in the bullying tactics, allegedly.

    • Sir Rabbittborough says Ask Rosendahl says:

      AWU Socialist ?? Har har har

      Go on have another crack Mzzzzz Arlett bound to have plenty in the bank from last time. They will cash in.

      Follow the bouncing ball

  8. upagumtreeperson says:

    Magpie, do not worry about advertising on Castle Hill because it will never happen. Our council is not so forward thinking. I think it would be better to get rid of that ridiculous graffiti known as the ‘Saint.’ Students should have been prosecuted years ago for defacing Castle Hill. I bet if I painted a sign or message today on Castle Hill I would be prosecuted. Double standards?

    • The Magpie says:

      The ‘Pie is with you there, Tree Fornicator, the old bird has been howled down on the several occasions he has expressed similar sentiments, pointing out that every visitor he has hosted to the town has been appalled at what is universally seen as defacement of a natural asset. Where are the ‘traditional owners’ who so often welcome us to ‘country’ in this matter … is it not a white man’s debasement of their natural heritage? Why don’t they demand its removal?

      But the Saint graffiti is a pretty fair reflection of the level of sophistication, awareness and style of our civic pride and leadership, which operates on the motto ‘If you don’t like it, fuck off.’

      And plenty do, laughing up their arm as they go, leaving the banjo pluckers to get on with impregnating their sisters on the back porch.

  9. Gonzo says:

    Pie, A bumper edition indeed, from the missing Mayor Mullet to an Oz travel article on Maggie Island, which left a lot to be desired for tourism, and the “qualified” multimedia journo — viz communications support officer — praising her boss on Twitter. And, as always, loved the latest cartoons from Trumpitania. Keep up the good work.

  10. Townsville Bitter says:

    Stephen Beckett’s move to the hillside is a big relief for half of TCC, and particularly several teams who sat under him. I’ve never met such a micro manager in my life. Every little thing needs his approval and it really gums up the works. I wish he would just trust us to do the jobs we’re employed to do. This is a massive problem in current TCC culture, everything is top down. So much time is wasted on red tape, it’s an absolute joke. I’m happy he’s moving sideways, I am just so sick of words and no action. If he did half the things he claimed he would, we’d be the most loved local council in the country. Sadly it’s just words, forgotten almost as quickly as they’re spoken.

    • Dearie Me says:

      Is the midget Beckett going from a General Manager of Customer Service and Community Engagement, to the Mayor’s Head of Office really a sideways move? Will it really mean he has less power?
      And what of fate of the former Head of Office?

  11. Lord Howard Hertz says:

    It is rare that you make an error of judgement, ‘Pie, but I must take issue with you over your cheap jibes at the Townsville City Council’s meritorious wins in the Institute of Public Relations Awards. It is unlike your normally generous self to talk down such a deserved feather in our civic cap. I mean, can you think of any other organisation in Queensland more deserving to win not one but two awards, both for talking rubbish?

  12. Miss Lou says:

    I’d like to be,
    Under the sea,
    In an octopuses garden
    In the shade.

    I’m chuffed to see Bentley’s cartoon.

    Always good,
    Always entertaining.


    Miss Lou.

  13. Critical says:

    Townsville Bitter I’m told that while those under Beckett in his old position rejoiced at his sideways move, the mood changed when everyone realised that it was a political move to get Mullet re re’-elected and for him to keep his and his wife’s jobs. They’ve now realised that as Beckett is in charge of the Mayors office and staff anything going to Mullet including emails from residents, will now be vetted by Beckett as he and the ALP tightens their grip on the city.

    • Townsville Bitter says:

      So nothing’s really changed hillside, just a different set of eyes doing the vetting (wonderful choice of words there cobber!). At least that’ll keep him occupied. Hill’s communication leaves a lot to be desired. A few grunts and incoherent sentences do not a stateswoman make.

      • The Magpie says:

        Seems to be an endemic problem within this city’s ‘leadership’ … it was TEL’s lack of even an effort to explain their function after Brett Judge left the communications post that attracted The ‘Pie’s attention. Both TCC and TEL would benefit greatly by leadership and media savvy that is open and honest about situations. In the case of the council, a business the size of a medium corporation isn’t always going to have smooth sailing (especially not with the red tape-choked modern environment), but is a massive insult and ultimately error itself pretending never to make an error, or if they do when they can’t lie their way out of it, that such error was corrected by ‘feedback, that was in fact there BEFORE politically self-interested decisions were taken. Taking the community into your confidence with honest admissions of mistakes and reasonable explanations will gain much more respect – and re-electibility – that the type of insulting ‘chook feeding’ in which our current leadership displays.

        This has been made even more glaringly evident with stand-in Chief Goof, Messagebank Walker’s string of buffoonish insults as chronicled in the last blog.

        Les, here’s a saying you should be aware of: When you’re dead, you don’t know it but everyone else knows it. Same with stupid.

        • Linda Ashton says:

          Wonder if the all-knowing interim chairman for TCC all things Water and Waste was given a rap over the knuckles by the returning Mayor. Stage 2 of the Haughton pipeline has never been a popular option with JH citing “depreciation costs.” Besides, stage 1 already provides “long term water security” according to the copy and paste media releases. So Les, who isn’t really sure which pipeline is stage 1 or 2, announces as soon as he is acting Mayor (choose your own expletive) that he’s written to the PM for Federal funding for stage 2. Has he started reading WFTAG’s stuff under the bed sheets with a torch? Hasn’t he heard the Mayor is waiting for Brad Webb’s final report before lobbying the Feds? But wasn’t the Mayoral delegation to Canberra in August to lobby the Feds for water security? On reflection, Les’ stage 2 announcement in the Bulletin were a little out of character and coherent.

    • Ezra Pound Axe King says:

      He’s got his work cut out for him!

  14. Rusty Nail says:

    Pie, whilst I can’t disagree with much of Mike Shearer’s sentiments expressed in his letter, I can say with certainty that I recently hosted some visitors from France who came to Townsville specifically to visit Magnetic Island and see koalas in the wild, which they read about back in France whilst putting together their itinerary. They were chuffed to see a couple and posted the photos for all their friends back home to see. Whether the koalas are introduced or native was of no concern to them.
    I also agree with NMD as to the quality of most of the beaches on the island, especially those on the northern side which are inaccessible by foot.. What we really need is a round-island track. I know of several instances where European backpackers have set out to walk round the island only to find they can’t get past the rocky headlands north of West Point. Wouldn’t cost all that much but could be a real tourist-puller.

    • Mike Shearer says:

      Penny Hunter the Deputy Editor responded to my letter::
      Hi Mike,
      Thank you for your interest in Travel + Indulgence. We think T+I produces an extremely high standard of writing, and certainly would not wish to mislead our readers.
      For your information, Queensland National Parks confirms that Magnetic Island is within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. It also confirms that koalas – latest stats put their population at around 1000 on Magnetic – are often seen on walks on the island, including the Forts Walk track. The Townsville tourism website says Magnetic Island is home to Northern Australia’s largest colony of koalas living in the wild, and also that the landscape includes eucalypt forests. 
      I hope this helps clear up any misconceptions you may have about the content T+I produces.
      I’ve provided the links below for your convenience.

      to which I have replied:

      the Kendall Hill statements were misleading in that what he described is NOT what the ordinary tourist will experience. 

      The island might be in the GBR World Heritage Area but the reef itself is nowhere near the island.  Stating that the island is “surrounded by the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef.” (not true) is very different to “Magnetic Island is within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.” (true).  

      The island is mostly national park without roads nor tracks.  The areas that do have tracks such as the Forts Walk are not in “eucalyptus forests’, but are in thin scrubby bush.  That koalas can be seen is true but you’d be lucky to see more than one or two.  To see more of them (you repeat the claim that there’s 1000) “infesting the forests” you’d have to bush bash where there are no tracks.

      You can claim that Hill is factually correct, and supported by “official” documentation.  But the interpretation he has put on the facts is highly misleading at best and untrue at worst.


      • Kenny Kennett says:

        Oh Mike, just be happy that someone is writing something positive about our surrounds. Stop being so pedantic.

      • No more dredging says:

        Mike, back in your original letter to the travel writer at The Australian you mentioned: “The island’s fringing reefs have been almost completely destroyed by silt from periodic dredging of the Townsville port channel. There are long-term government-sponsored projects to try to restore them.”

        Instead of pressing the paper to clarify some nitpicking gum tree semantic curiosity (who cares if you can’t see the “forest” for the bush?), it’s a pity you didn’t enlighten them some more about those government-sponsored dredging programs. An actual letter to the editor of The Australian would be a very valuable contribution. I fear though that you have lost touch with the “ordinary tourists” that currently visit Magnetic Island. They turn up out of the woodwork in the most unusual places and flock to spots like Rocky, Balding and Radical at the drop of a hat – on foot and push bike. And although you may not be aware of it, the many kilometres of national park walking tracks cut right through the Island (e.g. Nelly through to Arcadia or direct to the Forts) making many different forest and gully ecosystems accessible to the able masses. The track to West Point (about seven kilometres from Picnic) is also on the walk/ride/drive map these days making the tall timbers of the Duck Creek catchment (Eucalyptus tereticornis – ‘Forest Red Gum’) a park you can walk under. Maybe it’s time for another look?

  15. Cantankerous but happy says:

    Flicking around on the TV and there is Typo Gleeson hosting Heads Up on Sky News, a show that looks at newspaper headlines from tomorrow’s papers, and who is the guest contributor, Damien Tomlinson, talk about a fucken boring pair, they could cure insomnia, luckily I found something more exciting to watch, the golf.

    • The Magpie says:

      Ahem, just in case that was a slur on the greatest game ever invented – and you think golf is boring – shame you couldn’t have been with the ‘Pie on the 18th at Rowes Bay last week. Meet Mr Eastern Brown

      … heading for the hole, because he obviously thinks there’s a birdie in there.

      • seagull says:

        speaking of Golf……….from todays online bullsheet

        “Townsville Gold Club first to tap into water recycling scheme”

        idiots !

        • Non Aligned Worker says:

          SG, is Bully is also incorrect on other counts.
          TGC (Townsville Gold Club) are hardly the first to get into using recycled water.
          Tropics GC are already using as much water as the Bowhunters recycle plant can produce and have a long term supply guarantee from the council. They have been using this water for years.
          Maybe there is a difference in the Council / Bulletins definition of recycled water?

          • The Magpie says:

            And you’ve missed the historically first course to do a water deal with the council, almost two decades ago … the beautiful and friendly (even the snakes are polite) Rowes Bay.

            This story smells of a deal to sweeten up the harsh and widely incorrect stories the paper ran about the Townsville Club, with both Mayor Mullet and even her deputy goof realising that the membership are well heeled influential business people for the most part and it might be an idea not to diss them too much. And the same in spades goes for the Astonisher, with their dwindling advertising base.

            And as a matter of interest, The ‘Pie went bushwalking (his more accurate term for golf) at Tropics the other day, and while it is a work in progress with oodles being spent, it is indeed going to be a premier North Queensland course when its finished. Bit ropey in places at the moment, but The ‘Pie liked that … an excuse here in there for his woeful game is always handy.

      • No more dredging says:

        ‘Pie, what’s with Mr Eastern Brown sliding along that green wall. Were you having a little lie down or something?

        • The Magpie says:

          The ‘Pie figured folks like you would be lying on the couch having a nanna nap after a snifter too many, so you wouldn’t have to raise yourself to the computer.

      • Jatzcrackers says:

        Heading for the hole, Pie !! He’s gone past the hole…bit like your third putt !

      • Kenny Kennett says:

        …or it’s the safest place to not be hit when you’re playing.

    • Grumpy says:

      Birdie? From you? Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  16. Little Miss Muffet says:

    Madam Mayor is soaking up the Maltese sun, I believe. Leaving us in Mister Messagebank’s ‘capable’ hands.

  17. Achilles says:

    This little gem from The Oz on line. A comma would make all the difference.

    Prince Harry and his new wife Meghan have revealed they are expecting a baby just hours after arriving in Sydney for the Invictus Games.

  18. Anon says:

    The foundations are well and truly rattling at JCU – and good people will be lost. They really should be targeting those managers who have created havoc with the staff who now have to watch their backs. The bullying continues.

    • Concerned says:

      Feel for them, the same crap TCC went through and continues to go thru nearly 3 years on, and it is all thanks to the ALP (which is supposed to look after the workers) and our Dhead Mayor and her No FN idea twat of a CEO.
      (I wonder what the unions are doing out at the Uni, probably the same the did at TCC, NOTHING)
      Unless they lift their game, sadly the days of unions appears to be coming to an end, memberships are declining rapidly because of their no action.

  19. No more dredging says:

    There’s gold in them there hills and apparently there’s billions worth of nickel and cobalt in the tailings dam at Yabulu – again! Back in June this year the industry journal Australian Mining announced that Palmer’s dead refinery had “$6 billion” worth of metals in the waste dump. Not to be outdone, news.com took the same information and found “$7 billion” hidden there and in a timely and fabulous discovery Industry Queensland (IQ – get it?), looked harder at the once-smoking ruins and found an insider to do the sums again:

    “The cobalt price was at a 10-year high of $US40/lb at the time of printing. Nickel has a 52-week high of $US7.13/lb. That put the combined value above $8 billion, Mr Trifilio said.”

    Apparently we believe this gumpf so Mr Palmer formed a new political party and announced himself as a candidate in the next federal election. It’s what you do.

    Now, just four months later, the Townsville Bulletin has been told there’s “as much as $3.5 billion” worth of nickel and cobalt wasting away in the tailings dam at the abandoned refinery and in an amazing turn of events a new player is talking up a brand new nickel/cobalt refinery on a greenfield site virtually next door ready to import ore from New Caledonia (and employ up to “800” workers). Are we in La La Land or something?

    • crabclaw says:

      nmd, I was just aghast at the mavellousness about to befall us as detailed in the ABC interview this morning.

      However, what gave me the greatest joy and an enormous sigh of relief was hearing our real Mayors voice back on the airways… Ahhh, the safe pair of hands are back at the helm…

      • The Magpie says:

        Yep, spot on … under Captain Messaegbank, we were drifting, but now, Captain Mullet has got us back on course, straight towards a jagged financial reef.

        • I'll be plucked says:

          And Captain Cupcake (doughy, no substance and full of crap), ‘politician’ S. Stewart, where had he taken us Pie???

  20. Hear deah says:

    New nickel refinery 2 ks from qni is not in bluewater but at 226 mill drive yabulu. I wonder who owns that?

  21. Memory Man says:

    This macro overview of the rough landing in the housing market suggests the local optimists are deluded. Housing starts data (new dwelling approvals for Townsville) have long confirmed negligible local growth (which means in reality a super tight housing credit market). As housing credit growth begins to get squeezed even more, it is reasonable to expect the local market to be similarly affected. The bottom line is that NQ’s funk has taken place during a sustained period of low interest rates and relatively easy money. When the credit market takes a turn for the worse, NQ is poorly positioned to weather the contraction.

    The PVC survey of business confidence is meaningless, in this context. The civil construction boom is 100% public sector-funded, and when these major projects end, the work will also dissipate and the workers will return to where they came from. That’s why there’s only been a growth in the rentals market.

    I also suspect the PVC survey results are something like an echo chamber. The survey participants read the Bully, the Bully pumps the place which feeds a sense of optimism and so the cycle goes. Pity reality is at odds with these supercilious dynamics.

    Must dash. Where’s the City Economist when all of this is going on?


    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      In actual fact dwelling approvals in Townsville have plummeted off a cliff since this council took office, the numbers are astounding.
      In the 3 years before 2016 Townsville had an avarge dwelling approvals per month of
      88 Houses
      33 Units,
      Since these incompetent hopeless dickheads started in 2016 Townsville has averaged,
      49 Houses and
      3 units per month, yes 3 ( three), absolutely pathetic, they have not got a clue this bunch.

    • No more dredging says:

      Memory Man, when you talk about “PVC” are you referring to the TBully report done by PVW Partners?

  22. J jones says:

    Will you be buying the JT book Pie?

    • The Magpie says:

      The Joke Treasury? Already got it … you don’t think The ‘Pie makes all this up himself, do you?

      • J jones says:

        The thurston book

        • The Magpie says:

          Oh, goodness, sorry … The ‘Pie was also thinking James Thurber who was a … oh, never mind.

          Short answer, no. The ‘Pie’s interest stops the moment a champion athlete steps from the sports field and enters the field of celebrity where the tedious Fallacy of Transferred Authority kicks in i.e i could kick a ball, serve aces, swim fast and therefore my opinion on politics/social issues/gaydom/immigration et al is given added weight by a slavering media, when in fact, people who spend so much of their formative years playing sport and then go on to do it for a living are probably the most ill equipped to proffer any rounded worthwhile insight into the human condition. Yes, there are exceptions – Jack Gibson springs to mind – but they are rare.

          • Rusty Nail says:

            In the absence of a “Like” button, ‘Pie, “HEAR, HEAR, HEAR”. JT was a good rugby league player in his day, but that day has long gone. Would be nice if he just went quietly, accepting the well-deserved accolades along the way. Looks like that’s not going to happen though – shame really.

          • The Magpie says:

            Agree, but not entirely his fault, a panting, foam-flecked media will foist all sorts of rubbish on us purporting to be a haighography of a bloke who, as you say, was simply a good footy player. The exception here of course would be legit stories about the truly sterling work JT does among aboriginal youth.

  23. Hee-Haw says:

    $56m Ferry terminal – Completion Date 2020
    $250m footbal stadium – Completion Date 2020
    $225m water pipeline – Completion date END 2019
    $2b New nickel plant – Build date 2020

    Council elections – 2020

    Seems to be a theme don’t you think?

    • No more dredging says:

      Hang on, Hee-Haw, I’ve got Clive Palmer down as the Member for Herbert before 2019 is out. He will have already taken credit for the stadium and the pipeline as he will open them both. Out at Yabulu there’ll be something else . . . . the mist is closing in . . . . I can’t quite see through it . . . . oh no, there’s a big ship run aground in the mangroves! Looks like the Titanic jammed up against a glowing blue-green ‘iceberg’ of nickel tailings. I guess I can see a theme though it’s more a theme park. No doubt TEL will be on the case shortly.

      • Hee-Haw says:

        Theme park NMD now your talking let’s have one of those in 2020 too.
        This circus surely will have lost its 10 clowns by then

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      Yep, but the thing the Mullet can’t escape is the following,
      Hive Development $550 million, scrapped
      Unit development Palmer St, shelved indefinitely
      Unit development King St, shelved indefinitely
      Unit development The Strand, shelved indefinitely
      Unit development next to Seaview, scrapped,
      Unit development McIlrait St, scrapped,
      Unit development Douglas stage 2, shelved
      Unit development Cook St North Ward, stalled
      Piccadilly units at the old North Yards, scrapped, plus many many more,

      There is no doubt the Mullet is planning on the govt funded begging projects fooling the people once again, and the gullible dickheads of this town may well fall for it, but whoever stands against her at the next election needs to highlight the above which prove that despite various governments throwing money around town the facts are we are building nothing for people to live in because of one simple reason, no bastard wants to come and live here, and a fair chunk of the people who currently do want to pack up and leave, the fabric of our community has dissolved under these disgusting people.

      • The Magpie says:

        In the interests of honesty in advertising, perhaps you should change your name to Cantankerous And Unhappy.

        • Cantankerous but happy says:

          I was happy at lunch., always happy at lunch, then comes the after lunch snooze and then yeah, I see what you mean.

          • The Magpie says:

            Yeah, fully understand you would not be happy when they wake you and chuck you out of MacDonalds.

      • Hee-Haw says:

        Maybe I should stand, maybe the one time when a donkey vote will actually count for something

      • Dave of Kelso says:

        The ignorant, disinterested, selfobsested yobs, (sorry, citizens) who put the Mullett where she is are still out there. They know one jot, nore care about, the evidence you provide. They will not be motivated to contemplate the bigger picture, but will vote as their shop steward direct. Labor (the unions) control this city and the idealistic pig ignorant will be hard to educate and motivate.

      • No more dredging says:

        Cantankerous, regarding your list of shelved or scrapped unit developments, if my memory serves, wasn’t it you that was decrying the short term sag in population growth in Townsville as people left town following the apparent end of the mine construction boom and the not-unexpected collapse of Queensland Nickel? If the city’s population growth has plateaued, however temporarily and for whatever cause, isn’t it straight out economic pragmatism to postpone investment in new dwellings? If dozens or even hundreds of new units came on the market in the next 6-12 months at a time of falling prices and increasing insecurity in the housing investment market, wouldn’t that be an investors’ nightmare? Isn’t this just ‘the market’ doing its thing?

        • The Magpie says:

          Err, not taking sides but isn’t ‘the market just doing its thing’ is precisely the point Cranky Pants is making, with the added twist that the market’s woeful state is not helped by the inept council governance of the city.

          • No more dredging says:

            ‘Pie, I think Cranky makes it abundantly clear that in his view the market has nothing to do with Townsville’s woes. Cantankerous says: “I have always blamed the brainless dickheads who run our town for not having initiatives in place to combat the downturn”. As if us ratepayers should pick up the tab for . . . . nar, I won’t go there – I’ll end up stranded at a half-built airport down in the Galilee Basin.

        • Cantankerous but happy says:

          NMD, First off I have never blamed mining or the closure of QNI for the drop in Townsvilles population, I have always blamed to brainless dickheads who run our town for not having initiatives in place to combat the downturn, one only has to look at Mackay which was hit twice as hard as Townsville and how quickly it has recovered whilst Townsville has actually gone further backwards.
          Second virtually all of the projects I listed have been delayed due to Townsville Council fucking the developers around so much that they have now been abandoned, the developers will now leave the land vacant and just wait for a change in council and look at options when that occurs, developers are very patient people, but that doesn’t help Townsville and we are now well known as a place not to do business and a telling reason why private investment has collapsed.

    • Non Aligned Worker says:

      Mule mate. No pipes here yet. No install packages awarded. No fabricators awarded jobs a yet. Might say that the pipe line in the ground with pumps pumping the 230 + mega litres per day is a “pie” p dream.

    • Linda Ashton says:

      All funded by ? It’s quite bizarre that any council would think the ratepayer can’t tally the dollars for these projects and compare the total with the annual rates income. To take credit for projects that are fed and or state grant funded is opportunistic at best.

  24. Wounded Bull says:

    I’m sure, whom ever Clive Palmer endorses as his mayoral candidate will be using all of that info a much more, Cranky pants,. That is going to be a very interesting slanging match.
    It will present others an opportunity to show themselves as viable alternatives without being tied up in the crossfire I believe.

    • The Magpie says:

      Yep, sounds like a reasonable reading of the forthcoming situation, and will give someone above the fray the chance to show a little dignity as well a quality so sadly missing in this town’s politics for some time. Money for a campaign will be a big question.

      • Grumpy says:

        Too right. Whoever skates behind the argy-bargy in the front of the pack, may well sneak past the post when the others fall in an ungracious heap.

        “Do a Bradbury”, as they say. Although, if you have ever heard him speak, that may not be a good thing. Likable lad, but as dense as a Gidgee strainer post.

        • Linda Ashton says:

          Key criterion?

          • I'll be plucked says:

            Key criterion Linda??? Pretty basic really – don’t use the position as a personal feifdom, don’t tell lies or speak bullshit and listen to the opinions of the general populace before acting!

  25. Wounded Bull says:

    Yep a big issue Pie. However there are business out there that feel disenfranchised by both TEL and the Chamber of Commerce! How much can be raised is the real question. Along with council using ratepayer money right now promoting ‘delivery on their promises’ TV advertisements if its not criminal it should be!

  26. Lois Lane says:

    I drove past Dean Park tonight and The parkies were there in full flight. This was about 7:30 pm. The Dean Park situation seems to have disappeared from the pages of The Astonisher since labor mayor Jenny Hill came to power. No wonder no one reads that paper anymore. No integrity. Where is the member for Townsville on this? Captain Cupcake come out, come out, wherever you are.

    • I'll be plucked says:

      G’day Lois, as you may already know, Captain Cupcake, the member for Townsville is doughy, has no substance and is full of crap………; so, you won’t hear from him on this one – he has NO IDEA!

  27. Dave of Kelso says:

    A Townsville Nightmare:

    Next TCC election,


    The Mullet,
    Clive Palmer’s Puppet, and
    no third credible candidate.

  28. The Owl says:

    The range of incentives offered by the Townsville Bulletin to try and get people to buy the paper get “curiouser and curiouser”.
    Readers are currently being bombarded with “news” stories about the benefits of a so-called fitness monitor called Fitbit Versa.
    The stories point to an ad on a different page offering said monitor, a watch which tracks your daily activities, in return for taking a 12 month newspaper subscription.
    I don’t know who dreamed up this idea but suspect it was a 20-something blonde who rates herself an “influencer” and an expert on everything.
    Most fitness conscious people I know already have such a device, and purchased it for a lot less than the “over $550 of value” highlighted in the ad.
    A better way to sell the paper might be to employ some experienced journalists to write some real local news stories.
    In today’s paper there is just one news story that I hadn’t already read online or seen on tv,
    Even Seven’s “local?” News is scooping the Bully these days.

    • The Magpie says:

      The Astonisher’s habit of ‘crying wolf’ over absurd beat-ups is highlighted regularly on it’s Facebook page. Early last night was a prime example, which justifiably infuriated many, including regular Nester Hee Haw, who wrote ‘If the plane that landed was not a commercial 737 then this is disgraceful’.

      Indeed, in The ‘Pie’s guess, it was Kevin Gill panicking on approach in a Tiger Moth (“can’t find how to get the nose wheel down …heeeelllp!!!”. (The thought of someone of Gill’s apparent lack of cognitive ability flying a plane is both amusing and terrifying in itself.)

      But Facebook is a great leveller in some ways, and the Bulletin still doesn’t get the message … the 20 or so comments to the Astonisher’s post were all derisive, mainly about the paper.

      • Hee Haw says:

        This really is despicable and the comments agree.

        The last 10 FB posts from the Bulletin got an average of 9 comments, this one has 216 so far most of them either concerned for family flying in or condemning the Bulletin for no information and using a jet in the pic.

  29. The Wulguru Wonder says:

    Yet another classic by the Astonisher.

    7:00 pm last night the online Astonisher leads with a story about a plane landing in Townsville airport without the front wheels down. Very light on details but accompanied with a photo of a large passenger jet! What were people supposed to think had happened? Then no further updates to the online story until 7 this morning, a full 24 later!

    And not even a mention of it in today’s print edition!

    Turns out the aircraft was a military plane. Now the photo in the online story has been replaced with a generic pic of the Townsville airport.

    What is this paper coming to?

  30. Jane says:

    Very interested to read about bullying etc at JCU. Ask any external contractor. JCU Admin’s standard approach is intimidation, bullying and generally poor commercial and business practice.

    • The Magpie says:

      You’ve just described a great percentage of acadils and boofademics … your last phrase explains why they in a uni in the first place.

      • Achilles says:

        Those that can, do. Those that can’t, teach.

        • The Magpie says:

          And those that can’t teach go into admin.

        • Linda Ashton says:

          Teachers do nothing hey? You try surviving in a small box chockers with desks and chairs and 30+ “lively “ kids every day. It’s not babysitting. The problems that many kids enter school with these days would have you in foetal position in the staffroom before little lunch. Teaching is damned hard yakka. If you can read this maybe a teacher or two helped you along. Academics – all wankers. Bloody hell I’m a waste of oxygen Pie.

          • The Magpie says:

            Ooooh \ah, Linda, careful you’ll do yourself a mischief.
            And while The ‘Pie agrees wholeheartedly with your assessment, Achilles didn’t actually say they do nothing, and the quotation by GBS in his play Man and Superman was a humorous aside in line with The ‘Pie’s long held (and no doubt not shared by you) that a good many academics are sad and disappointed personal failures. Not all, and certainly not you – seriously. But grow a better funny bone.

  31. The Magpie says:

    Matters of the Day 1:

    It is right and proper that abortion be legalised in Queensland but as usual, it a typical government half-measure. It should also be compulsorily retrospective. The ‘Pie has a list.

  32. The Magpie says:

    Matters of The Day 2:

    On that Wentworth electorate email.
    Are we all to be taken for chumps, and try to sort out what must surely be a double if not triple bluff? The fake email about Karen Phelps pulling out of the race because she has HIV (and people the email concludes should therefore vote Liberal) is touchingly idiotic in its scrambled message, but undoubtedly is designed to damage the Liberals. So we face this choice; 1. did Phelps, or the Greens, or One Notion, or Labor, plant the email themselves to nobble the Lib’s Dave Sharma 2. or did the Libs issue the email themselves, which is so blatantly damaging to the their cause that people will THINK some opponent issued it, or 3. some 150kgs loser sitting cross legged on his bed in a darkened room with just his laptop decided to try to get some sorely desired attention as a ‘mysterious’ disruptor.

    The thing to ponder in all these choices … saying Phelps has HIV is one thing, but then urging people to vote for the Libs instead invites the conclusion of perhaps even a triple bluff … a third party did issue the email, figuring people will think at first that it can’t be the Libs and then considering that, because they think that, then maybe it was the Libs after all. But hey, maybe that’s what they are meant to think, so ….

    This thinking could go on forever like a Mandelbrot set which suggests we will end up disappearing up our cloacas

    … thank Christ it will all be done and dusted in 48 hours.

    • Grumpy says:

      My bet is that it was a Labor ploy – straigh out of their playbook.

      • The Magpie says:

        But … but … but … that’s what the Libs want you to think … maybe.

        • Wily Wombat says:

          If in doubt, blame Labor. Of course, losing a 17.5% majority in Wentworth would have nothing to do with the Libs, would it?
          What about the Nats, working themselves up to a Spill so the Beetrooter can sit on his throne again, and in a vital by election week. That’s obviously Labors fault.
          Then Slomo, the happy clapper, suddenly sniffs out the Jewish vote.
          Even Labor at their most devious couldn’t come up with this stuff. Well, maybe St Paul of Bankstown could, but he would know he wouldn’t have to?
          I see that Honest Johnny is going to be wheeled out now to help things. Thats all they need in the progressive Eastern Suburbs.
          I know, why don’t they knight Prince Harry.

          • The Magpie says:

            Your not really a deep thinker, are you, Eats Roots And Leaves? Lucky wombat’s don’t have knees or your jerk reaction would cripple you.

          • Grumpy says:

            Oh, look! Another one-eyed Leftie! Is that you, Muddy?

            ‘Even Labor at their most devious could not come up with such stuff”…????


            Fake how-to-votes, red shirts paid from the public purse, fake robo-calls at dinner-time, the appallingly dishonest mediscare, branch-stacking to perfection and let’s not forget the old “vote early and vote often” dodge.

            No doubt at all that all sides come up with dirty tricks, it’s just that Labor has a particular skill and wont in this form of skulduggery.

          • Dave of Kelso says:

            Give him Australian citizenship and make him our Aussie Head of State.

            It would be OK as he would not be in the Reps or Senate.

  33. Wily Wombat says:

    If it’s o.k to be white, it’s also o.k to be a wombat, Magpie.

    • The Magpie says:

      But given your aforementioned anatomical lack mid-leg, unlike white (and black) blokes, you are unable to enjoy a knee trembler. Poor bugger, you.

      • Wily Wombat says:

        Ah yes, that may be true. However we communicate by leaving square poohs for our prospective mates to decipher and we have plate armour in our arse so when we go down our burrows, we are protected from behind. It is great to be a wombat, even better to be a wily one.

      • Jatzcrackers says:

        Unlike old mate, eats roots and leaves, I recently got the opportunity to engage in your previously mentioned activity Pie. Only then after several minutes did I understand the true meaning of the origin of the name of said activity ! Wouldn’t be a wombat for quids !

    • No more dredging says:

      Wily, I’m hearing that Pauline Hanson has taken the global warming debate one step further – she’s gone down to the sea and told the Great Barrier Reef that it’s OK to be white.

      • The Magpie says:


      • Wily Wombat says:

        That’s great NMD. The Greens have come out and told the reef that its ok to be rainbow. I am a non swimming Wombat so I don’t really care. I have been told that all the clown fish on the reef are pissed off with Pauline for trying to put them out of a job though.

  34. The Wulguru Wonder says:

    So the online Astonisher has finally updated the story about the ‘no nose wheel’ landing…..and by the look of it they had absolutely everything arse about in the original beat up of a story.

    Despite the accompanying photo of a large passenger jet the aircraft turned out to be a RAAF Hercules transport.

    And the wheels were actually down! Turns out that due to a hydraulic fault the crew had to lower the wheels manually, but otherwise the landing went safely and without incident.

    Talk about jumping the gun and publishing unsubstantiated and unconfirmed twaddle! If they had any credibility left they might be worried, but I suppose they can’t lose what they don’t have.

  35. Alahazbin says:

    Can somebody on here with more grasp of the English language than me please compile the the 100 words and nominate the ‘Pie’ for the Astonisher’s top 50 ‘Influencers’
    See how far we get. NMD, CBH. Anyone.

    • The Magpie says:

      Hahahaha … and jolly good luck with that seeing the light of day? Tres droll.

    • tenacious D says:

      Alahazbin link please?

      • Alahazbin says:

        Page 4 of today’s Astonisher:
        “To nominate an individual, please send their full name along with a 100 word justification for their selection to email hidden; JavaScript is required by Monday , October 22″
        Good luck Pie!

  36. seagull says:

    charming photo of “our Jen” online @ the bullsheet right now, you wouldn’t be able to post a screen shot would you Pie ?

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