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The Magpie

Sunday, August 13th, 2017   |   161 comments

Jenny’s Personal Road To DAMascus: The Miracle Of Going From ‘No Crisis, Cut The Crap’ To ‘Hurry Up, Turn On The Tap’

A year ago, she was adamant there was ‘ no water crisis’, but now she’s giving premier Alphabet the hurry up for a second Burdekin pipeline. But there’s more than a divine revelation behind Mayor Mullet’s cynical epiphany.

The latest readership figures land with a thump in Flinders street West … and it is with a trembling lower lip that they bravely say things are improving for The Astonisher! That in the face of new News cutbacks after a disastrous financial time over the past year.

And is this the last Magpie blog post … with Donald Trump and Kim Il Chubbychops squaring off, it may well be the last of everything …

And the Townsville Bulletin continues to whistle on its way to the scaffold.

But first …

The Drip Torture Of Townsville’s Water Woes

The entire imbroglio of Townsville’s water supply issue throws up a dozen questions for every solution, and reveals some more ‘join-the-dots’ riddles.

But for The ‘Pie, the populist politics of trivialising and insulting the city is the most galling. In a ‘wave something colorful at them, beads and blankets’ ploy, Mayor Mullet has engineered an apparent need for this beleaguered community to be lectured on how to better manage our household water.

FFS! But then make that a double FFS! Because the $10 million campaign – yes, $10-bloody-million – will be fronted by an rrelevant show pony B-grade celebrity in the form of someone called Jamie Drury to patronize us with little lectures on what drips we are about water. If you’re cheesed off, Bentley is appalled.

durie fin

Well, it could be worse, y’know … Mayor Mullet could be bewitching us herself as front person. That’d make the kids sit up and listen.

Jenny witch

As several commenters have pointed out, that $10million equals the cost of topping up Ross Dam with Burdekin water for two years every day.

 And Wither The Water Babies

Another question: While money has been allocated by the state for a second pipeline, the first question that arises is about the Water Task Force, with the apt acronym WTF. It is supposed to hand it’s final recommendations and report in a year’s time, next September. But somehow it appears a duplicate Haughton pipeline has already been given the green light.. So what all the little WTF’s will be doing for Brad Webb over the next lucrative 12 months is anybody’s guess.

Nothing particularly wrong with the second pipeline being locked in, some action at last, but in typical headless chook fashion, confusion reigns and fiscal answers are still thin on the ground, lost in the melee of political opportunism and desperation.

But one question that does not escape The ‘Pie’s limited powers of analysis is our mayor being blinded by the light.

Screen shot 2017-08-13 at 11.54.16 AM

Our gal dashed off a letter to her pen pal Anna Alphabet, begging that the $225million government money be brought down over two – not four – years. The mayor simpered to her mate that she would like to see the new pipeline completed by 2019, not 2021, to ‘provide a boost for local contractors’.

Ahem. Oh, really?

The boost Mayor Mullet really wants is strutting rights on the campaign trail for another dip at the mayoralty, having been advised by Labor heavies that she is no longer on the list for higher Labor honours. She losing out big time in factional manoeuvring, both at local and state levels.

Politically. Mullet and Alphabet are factional BFF, so that timeline is likely to be looked upon kindly. But whoa up there! … a small thing called an state election is about to happen, probably within a couple of months, so our mayor will be haunting George offices with a vengeance, and Dolan Hayes will be canvassing his many old Labor back room mates, because in her own interest, Mayor Mullet wants the deal fast tracked, done and dusted before Anna faces the prospect of being given the heave-ho by a disgruntled electorate.

Now Heres A Funny Thing – Let’s Join Another Couple Of Dots


Another thing on the water issue that Mayor Mullet will be desperate for is a big bout of political Alzheimers from ratepayers when she starts doing her simpering savior act. ‘I was elected, and LO, there was water’.

You will remember that last year, Jenny Hill was rubbishing her opponent, Jayne Arlett, insisting that there was no water crisis. She challenged Ms Arlett to release the Empower Economics report on which the challenger based her ‘crisis’ assertion, declaring the report ‘dodgy’ and if implemented, likely to bankrupt the city.

Now we know how that campaign all came out , but here’s the thing.

The Empower Economics report The Mullet labeled dodgy was written by this bloke, Empowers boss David Lynch, (incidentally, a mate of Dolan Hayes).

David Lynch 3

And this would be the same David Lynch who copped the nice little earner at Townsville Enterprise (TEL), as project manager of a feasibility study into the Hell’s Gate Dam proposal. (Why the Dudley Do Nothings were given secondary oversight of this study hen the main investigation is being done by global crowd SMEC, based in Melbourne, is another story for another time.)

Let The ‘Pie be clear here, in case Barry Taylor sniffs another candidate to sue the old bird on spurious libel claims … to the best of The Magpie’s knowledge, David Lynch is a well-respected and trained economist (well, as much as any economist can be). So The ‘Pie has no reason to think is nothing but a professional operator in good standing.

But why would the mayor have that opinion, if she thinks he writes dodgy reports?

Now, having joined the Lynch/Hayes/Hill dots – and remembering that Mayor Mullet is the deputy chair of TEL with a big say in who does what down at Wishing Well House – here’s the question.

If the Mullet thinks Lynch’s report for Arlett was so “dodgy”, does she think Lynch has the right stuff to even be involved in the Hell’s Gate study? Perhaps TEL should, in the interests of openness, (stop laughing) tell us how much public money is being spent on Mr Lynch, and for good measure, how much they spent on Mr Hayes in the last five and a half years since Mullet became Mayor. Was the decision to appoint Mr Lynch a decision endorsed by the Board?

The ‘Pie would not like to be hanging by the left one waiting for an answer to that.

Surely She Knows She’s Making A Complete Twit Of Herself

CEO of the Dudley Do Nothings, Little Patty O’Callaghan is always good for a groaning laugh, and she didn’t disappoint this week. She called on a board member of Queensland Airports to resign, because he was also a board member of coal rival Newscastle Port Authority, a rival to Townsville for hoped for coal exports. Among choice quotes in this nebulous story, our comedienne honked: ‘He can’t serve two masters’.

Now that’s a real thigh-slapper, but you can bet she woulkdn’t ask the same question of her TEL board chairman Kevin ‘Rhymes With’ Gill, who is also QAL’s Townsville airport manager promoting QAL’s damaging and rorting passenger tax (fortunately still blocked by Qantas).

Ms O’Callaghan, that statement is so bumptious and biased, one could almost suspect that for once, it was your own original idea.

How lucky are we in Townsville to have had a corporate and political glass ceiling so flimsy it has been shattered by our two powerhouse females leaders.
Titantic Townsvilled

But It Might Not Matter – Nothing Might – Given Our Fate Is In The Hands Of Two Complete Chuckleheads.

 On the international scene, this from Ben Jennings in the Guardian says it all.

Ben Jennings in the Guardian

Now we just wait for something to bump in the night.

Shotgun Marriage

Be it between two men or two women, like all marriage down the centuries, some blushing brides will need a little encouragement to make the final commitment , as Paul Zanetti points out.

Zanetti onSSM

The old adage that politics makes strange bedfellows was updated with the Canberra travesty concerning gay marriage during the week. The hapless PM’s hidden agenda, which is slowly strangling him, is that the Libs desperately wanted a plebiscite because they knew it would be a NO vote, given the hypocritical homophobic ethnic and religious groupings out there with disproportionate clout. They could then claim they have let the people speak. But its a cowardly win-win for Talkbull, because if it’s a YES vote, then he can just shrug and say ‘nothing to do with me, the people have spoken’.Now a plebiscite has been again rejected, we will waste a lot of our dough on a slapstick mail-in, open to all sorts of jiggery pokery – and then they’ll do what they should have done in the first place. Just change the law and then let us ALL get on with our own private lives.

Readership Freefall Continues For Townsville Bulletin

News Ltd has had a bad week. Financially, they have been revealed to be deeper into the red poo, globally and in Australia, and signalled there is likely going to be more slash and burn in the coming year. That despite savage staff cuts saving $40million in the past 12 months.

But like the Black Knight, they ain’t about to give in without tryting to baffle with bullshit. Here’s just one prize example of Holt Street trying to make a positive from a massive negative, from the story dutifully run in the Bulletin

‘News’ chief financial officer Susan Panuccio said Australian mastheads, including the Townsville Bulletin, had made good progress with efforts to ease more readers into the habit of paying for digital content’

But our local opinion shaper, The Astonisher, coyly declined to give details of the ‘good progress’ to the Astonisher’s numbers. But fret not, The Magpie will supply them soon enough.

They certainly can’t be too flash, since this week revealed the The Bulletin’s readership (as versus circulation) continues to tank.

These are the previous quarterly figures …

R'ships figs to march 17

… and these are the latest stats to the end of June.

r'ship to june

No Such Problems For The CommBank – Or Is That ConnBank?

 Commbank logo

The bank that operates under a logo of a Sao dipped in Vegemite trumpeted a yearly profit of somewhere north of $9billion, but one wonders how much of that profit was their cut from the money put into their street-front washing machine known as ATMs. With the amounts of dosh involved, the Commonwealth Bank hasn’t been so much as laundering money as dry cleaning, pressing and packing it in perfumed plastic wraps.

Big fines are threatened, but you can bet will never happen to any damaging and just extent.

Another Magpie favourite, Cathy Wilcox, puts it neatly.

Cathy Wilcox on banks

And While We’re With The Banks

Just to prove they ain’t stoopid, the Commonwealth this week formally announced that they wouldn’t be touching Adani and the Carmichael mine with a barge pole of any length. That makes all big boys saying no. It will be interesting if the government thinks it knows better than the professional moneymen.

A savvy mate suggested this during the week.

Re the $ 1 Bn ” concessional loan”….usually a lender seeks substantial collateral security to guarantee a loan of any size…let alone $1 Billion, so ….what does Adani offer by way of security? Adani would probably say ” The Railway Line!! dummy!!!”

Imagine the rush of buyers to grab this prize when the project turns turtle!….Still ….it would all come back to us as really useful razor blades &/or TATA utes!! (Although the market might be a little flooded once the Yabulu Plant joins the queue to the blast furnaces.)

If the proposed line was the security, what’s it worth as scrap? We already have a glaring lesson on that score.

The Greenvale line came back as early Hyundai shopping trolleys! but the vendors didn’t recover their costs. But BHP subsequently found their very own Bond in the shape of Clive Palmer, who saved them from having to fix the BIG tailings dam problem which will probably be still there in 2117!

And to think Mayor Mullet seriously suggested that the council the plant for $1, and then sell to recover unpaid rates. Sell to whom? What would happen is that the Townsville ratepayers would be stuck with a multi-billion dollar environmental catastrophe.

What’s that Jenny, there is no tailings dam crisis?

Only time will tell. Unfortunately.

Is She Or Isn’t She?

Still no further word on the strong rumour that TCC CEO Adele The Impaler Young is heading elsewhere.

She is ostensibly on three weeks hols, but persistent reports from inside council suggest she’s soon out the door soon, if not already. The ‘Pie doubts she’s already gone, but no reason not to, she can report to Mayor Mullet ‘mission accomplished’.

Clive Palmer Is Rumored To Follow Donald Trump’s Example To Thwart Pesky Media.

'The road to give a fuck is that way.'

‘The road to give a fuck is that way.’

The story is that Clive has started to stream his own news channel, to give us what he sees as the the truth about matters.

The Magpie understands that the initial title of the show was to be Fact Hunt, but this was dropped when it was realized that some dyslexics and former Yabulu workers might think it was referring to the host and not the show.


That’s it for this week folks, keep those comments rolling in during the week to have your say on anything at all. And if you think it worth it, a donation to help with blog costs would be nice. How to donate button below.

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. News Views says:

    This might be another dot to join the others. I am sure David Lynch was the QCCI (Queensland Confederated Chamber of Industry?) regional manager in Townsville in the 90’s when His Radiance and Little Dolan were walking the regional stage.

  2. Alahazbin says:

    David Lynch was at TCC as a project manager. Like any manager at TCC the longer they stayed the more expensive the vehicle they drove around at ratepayers expense.

  3. Terry Smith says:

    I’m wondering if Empower Economics is part of the joint venture otherwise known as Empower North Associates? ASIC Business name searches show the JV Partners are David Lynch and Dolan Hayes. I guess then the plot thickens further when you look at the ECQ disclosure documents from the local government election and Empower Pty Ltd and Hayes appear as large as life as donors for team Hill. What a small world. I’m not sure if TEL are subject to RTI rules, probably not, but it would be interesting to see how much money has flown out of its coffers to names appearing on the ECQ lists for either time?

    • The Magpie says:

      Dolan Hayes has never denied that he is a loyal Labor man, and why would he, that in itself is not a stick with which to beat anyone over the head. And it strands to reason that if you’re of one particular party, you will favour the faithful for the job (just go back through judge appointments over the years, Labor supporters when Labor is in, conservatives vice versa). But it is when financial featherbedding occurs there is a problem … like finding what ultimately is ratepayer money to have Dolan do a $10,000 campaign through the Bulletin to convince us that the CBD stadium was a good thing, or that an unnecessary duplicate study of Hell’s Gate feasibility is necessary under slack-jawed Little Patty’s purview.

      • Dearie Me says:

        Funny that Dolan and RTI should pop up again. Was a rumour going around council a while ago that an RTI was put in to see how much Dolan was costing the ratepayer for his frequent attendance to meetings etc. The Impaler denied any expenses. However the new head of legal and the Mayor’s chief of staff both refused to sign the required piece of paper to declare they had searched all council systems and found no evidence of payment to Dolan. I guess you can draw your own conclusions…

        • Sandgroper says:

          Think you mean RFI (Request For Information) rather than RTI, which is an acronym for Request To Intervention. This calls for a multi-tier approach to the early intervention and support of those with learning and behavioural problems. Upon reflection, considering council shenanigans, your use of the term seems highly appropriate.

          • Dearie Me says:

            Haha! If only someone would intervene…

            Actually it’s Right to Information
            Apparently the public no longer have one. Despite the legislation.

          • Droopy draws says:

            Was a little perplexed about RTI too.
            Please; some consideration for missing role call in this joint.

  4. Mike Douglas says:

    Has the Dailey Astonisher sent an email to their Journalists subject” check Mayor Mullets Maths” as their June 27 th report on TCC,s “Battlers Budget” and 5% cut to general rates didn’t calculate fine print early payment discount has been reduced by 5% resulting in rates increases of 1.3%.The Daily Astonisher and Mayor Mullets credibility continues to erode leaving Townsville rates the highest in Queensland.Now to Cathy Ofoole Herbert’s Voice in Canberra. Was she taking on the big issues for Herbert like Unemployment or Electricity Pricing? no Cathy was decorating her office in colours supporting the same sex yes vote but unfortunately the clerk of Parliament has advised her to take it down.Cathy has been out of the blocks early pushing the yes vote but expect another backflip when the no voters ring and email her office reminding her of her 38 vote majority.

  5. Sir Ossis O'Fliver says:

    I see during the week the head of WTF stated that the existing pumps for the Burdekin pipeline were now worn out and in need of expensive repair or replacement.
    To my knowledge they have only been turned on twice.
    Certainly seals and rubbers may well need replacing due to lack of use.
    Unless someone has been pumping water without our knowledge? Nah, couldn’t happen.

    • The Magpie says:

      Of course not … that only happens in the Murray-Darling basin.

      • Memory Man says:

        So, $10m into a Jamie Durie campaign. As one of the other commenters noted, that’s many many days’ of pumped water costs. People are entitled to know whether there are concrete benchmarks for the campaign in terms of measured reductions in water consumption. What’s the start date and starting point? How long will the campaign run for? Did Council have a briefing paper before signing the celebrity up for the job, with analysis of potential impacts, alternatives etc? Whose brainwave was it in the first place? Perhaps the Council could also come clean on the effectiveness of water restrictions with some real information to the community on average household usage over the last 18 months. That would be novel, wouldn’t it?! At what target outcome does the public get back the $10m? Speaking of which, what is the dough being used for? How much is going to our celebrity mate? How much to News Corpse for ads in the Bullsheet? How much to tv and radio to keep them onside and off the Council’s back? Wonder why the Bully isn’t asking these questions ….

  6. Dutch Reverend says:

    Well, we are about to have a postal survey on SSM. The only reason we are doing this is because, although the LNP had a mandate from the last election to have a plebiscite, the greens and labor chose to con the community that it was going to be devisive and hurtful. Who are they kidding, they just wanted to create an opposing political view. As I recall, Gillard absolutely refused to allow SSM, but Penny and Bill didn’t vilify her for that. I hope that the survey rules strongly in favour of SSM and the members are allows to cross the floor and put this issue to bed, and take a major political platform away from the greens and labor. Then Bill will continue to push the Republic. I think many Australians would go for a Republic, but not during the current Monarch’s reign. But at present, our system ain’t broken so why bother to try and fix it. Can you imagine the mess during the transition. We can’t even run a simple census effectively, and it would be set up by politicians. God help us.

  7. The K Man says:

    A good read, as always, Pie. Sunday morning ritual.

    I don’t usually join the conversation, but feel, on this occassion, I must correct an inaccuracy. It was BHP (not MIM) who operated the Yabulu nickel refinery, and subsequently sold it to Clive Palmer.

  8. Sceptical Sally says:

    When the dots are joined, a clear picture emerges of many Labor stooges using the TCC and TEL as a primary income source and/or convenient ATMs.
    It’s shameful that cowardly local media are, by their silence, complicit in this rorting.

  9. The Gnome from Nome says:

    Yes The K Man….. MIM ran it from about 1974 and sold it to Alan Bond.

  10. Alahazbin says:

    Interesting to see in Saturday’s Astonisher that TCC calling for ‘Team Manager’ positions for IT, Fleet Services and Mechanical & Electrical.. These were the same positions that were in the initial round of sackings of the 22 Managers in Sep ’16 because they wanted to eliminate one tier of management. The roles of the three jobs advertised don’t seem to be any different to the sacked managers. Must admit two of those were dead wood.

    • Alacan says:

      You can bet that the pay scale of team leaders at tcc is lessened and they will be employed under different conditions

      A strong message has been sent and essentially the whole structure broken down to rebuild under an ethos of control and rule .. and its rule of very large depressive thumb.

      Keep in mind that TCC has been under constant structural change since 2008.. by the time this latest iteration is finished that will be 10 years

      The amount of churn and repeat efforts is a poor indictment not only on this Council but of the LG industry in Qld as a whole.. and LG is an extension of State.

      Also .. I think what would really be interesting is a test of any independent contractors that tcc is using .. you know those individuals that have resigned and are now back doing specialist projects.. are they truly independent contractors or are they really employees under various tests and guidelines by ATO and others.

      Also I understand when significant change occurs risk associated with HS&E should as good industry practice be revised. I reckon you’d be on a safe bet that this hasn’t occurred to the degree it should have if at all.

  11. The Abbott from Oonoonba says:

    It is scandalous what the Labor loonies are doing to the ratepayer’s corporation, the TCC. Some surplus staff would have had to be released. But they have sacked hard working intelligent staff with multi years of priceless accumulated intellectual property vital for strategical operation and planning. With the Impaler acting like an Al Dunlap on steroids and the Mullet and her arm waving group of useless boofheads complicit in the action, the future of our city is bleak indeed!

    • Alahazbin says:

      Yes! A lot of good people have been let go and as you say hundreds of years of local knowledge down the gurgler. Years ago one supervisor was coming around to retirement, so he was put in an office and write down all his knowledge of the sewerage system so it all could be put into the computer system.

      • Droopy draws says:

        I wonder if ‘old mate’ in charge of purchasing tyres for the council fleet has been releived of his intellect?
        “Horses’ mouth” told me that when asking over the desk about tendering on supply for TCC, he was hit with this one…
        Quote, “Depends if you can supply rubber for my rally cars…” End quote.

  12. Gull says:

    If News Corpse is about to embark on another round of redundancies then expect to see more examples like this on the Bully website this morning:
    Headline: Cause remains unkown (sic) for fatal crash
    Intro: Police are yet to confirm the cause of the fatal crash that occured (sic) …
    I saw this about 9am and as I write at 12.30pm it’s still there.
    Sadly Holt St believes that the way to fix declining circulation and plummeting advertising revenue is to dispense with the services of many sub editors, the people they used to employ to correct such howlers before they made it to print or digital. What possible chance does the Bulletin or any other paper have of arresting the circulation decline when it allows this to go through and remain uncorrected? I speak as an erstwhile member of the Fourth Estate and former colleague of the Magpie .. and a victim of cuts earlier this year on another publication. Keep up the good work. As Don Chipp famously said in another time and place: Keep the bastards honest.

    • Munding Bird says:

      I have a better one of an article last year stating 24% of people living in Florence Bay,Magnetic Island,were not of Australian origin?
      No one lives there,and it is National Park.
      The astonisher at its best……..!
      I emailed the writer,and as you would expect,no response.

  13. Critical says:

    One of the questions that I have about TCCs Jamie Durrie campaign is what PRACTICAL knowledge does he have about the design, plant selection and maintenance of domestic and commercial gardens and public parks and open spaces in the dry tropics. He’s probably going to get it all from text books and overseas information. Wouldn’t it have been wiser to give the contract to a Townsville organization who can engage with and seek invaluable ideas from the local community and gardeners, seek advice from other Australian sources (r.g Rockhampton Regional Council, Darwin City Council whuch have similar rainfall patterns) and keep the dollars in Townsville and give some Townsville people jobs and increase their knowledge aling the way.
    Oh by the way, have a look at the Cairns Regional Councils website and how they give their community hints on water saving, what plants to use etc.

    • The Magpie says:

      Why as adults in this cyber age, do we need to pay $10million for this patronising waffle, indeed why do qww need to pay anybody for information that is freely available?

      • Critical says:

        Spot on Pie develop an app like the Cairns Regional Council “Thrive” app which friends of mine in Cairns use when buying plants and develop a few associated Utube’s and that’s it.

      • The Awful Truth says:

        It is just advertising and it is obviously needed. Big names attract more publicity than well intentioned locals, no matter how well educated they are.

        Advertising is needed because people are still watering lawns with sprinklers in the hottest part of the day. People are also still planting buffalo lawns which are easy and cheap to grow but totally unsuited for this environment as Buffalo consumes more water and is more maintenance intensive that other, more expensive, varieties such as Zoysia.

        If Jamie can convince people to plant a dry tropics tolerant ground cover, I’m all for it. As we all know, more water is used on lawns than on anything else in this city.

        • The Magpie says:

          ‘It’s just advertising?’ !!!
          It’s just $10million, which could set up 40 sites with all the information you suggest and lots more. This is a waste of money, pure and simple.

          • Dearie Me says:

            Advertising is not needed.
            Community engagement and social change is what is needed..oh and some water. Not a stadium. Not a lagoon. Not another hotel. Not another development. And not a development corporation.

            Apparently the Impaler is a self proclaimed expert on community engagement. If you count engaging the nightly entertainment then this maybe true…..

  14. David Sewell says:

    On July 14 the owners of the Ben Lomond Uranium mine withdrew their appeal in the planning and Environment Court, against the Environmental Protection Order issued to them in October last year, after four postponements. They will now have to undertake a comprehensive scope of works to remove toxic waste, including radio active material that has been sitting at the mine site for more than three decades. Despite issuing a media release and sending letters to the editor to The Northern Miner (Charters Towers), the Courier Mail and the Townsville Bulletin, all of which are Murdoch papers, none of them have published either the news or the letters.
    Want to learn more search Facebook, Townsville Uranium

  15. The old peterbuilt says:

    On a toatally different matter . On my way to the land of the biggest friggin white koalas I’ve ever seen I had dinner with a couple of old TNT mates in Sydney. One now is an aviation consultant and the other has businesses in five countries. I like eating with rich people , they always want to pay the bill and they drink top shelf booze. Anyway they are both car racing nuts and they tell me the v8 supercar business is being offered around for $1 provided you take over the $120million debt. Mullet may have to find some other way to entertain us next July.

    • Sandgroper says:

      Tony Cochrane got out of the V8s at exactly the right time. Or, more probably, his mongrel attitude and rat-cunning was essential for its success.
      As things stand, the Supercars for $1 would be an investment on a par with Mullet’s thought-fart about taking over and on-selling the nickel refinery.

  16. Buttered Parsnip says:

    Townsville residents are to be lectured on water use by the very people brought this crisis upon us through inaction and a belief that there was no problem.

    It’s as if it’s the consumers fault “YOU BAD PEOPLE, LOOK WHAT YOU’VE DONE – STOP THIS WATER USE AT ONCE,”

    Maybe Townsvillians should use water as usual, bring the crisis to a head and force some action.

  17. Miss Lou says:

    Always good,
    Always entertaining.

    I humbly accept your request. It’s an honour to be your skanky ho.


    Miss Lou.

  18. Watcher says:

    Another test of the credibility of our 3 Labor drones and Astonisher editor Ben Bogan looms tomorrow morning.
    In todays Sunday Snail, Anna Alphabet triumphantly announced that she had partnered with WA power provider Alinta Energy to provide a 25 per cent discount on power for two years.
    Of course, this long overdue relief is only available to Queenslanders who live in the south east corner of the State. The new offer “wont extend into the state’s north just yet.”
    Now we all know that the south east already had competition in the power supply business while we second class citizens have to cop whatever our sole provider Ergon Energy charges us.
    Surely our 3 Labor drones need to explain just what they have done if anything to try and get this new 25 per cent discount offer for their constituents.
    And surely the editor must ask these questions and demand answers.
    As I said, credibility is on the line here.
    If the Astonisher doesn’t take our Labor drones to task on this important issue then News Limited should replace him with a local who is prepared to fight for North Queenslanders.

    • The Magpie says:

      No, locals should replace News Ltd … and that’s on the cards anyway.

    • Scientician79 says:

      The Astonisher should be all over this Monday, but bet they won’t.

      The three local members better pucker up and kiss their jobs good bye, not like they shouldn’t already, but surely this is the final nail in the coffin.

      And they have the Premier to thank for it, talk about a Labour Party own goal.

      • Scientician79 says:

        And what a surprise not a single mention of the Power pricing issue on the Astonisher Website this morning.

        Maybe someone who still gets the physical paper can comment if they even bothered at all.

        Voice of the North indeed.

        • Sandgroper says:

          I found it on the website, tucked away under the heading of “Business” as you scroll down. Had to look hard, though.

        • Alahazbin says:

          It was on page 8, but the headline was “Power Offer Kick in the Guts” a reaction from the LNP.
          What happens if this takes off in the SEQ?
          Ergon won’t like losing money. Who do they charge to recoup the losses?

  19. Dave of Kelso says:

    With the Nth Korea matter developing as it is, it is timely that we listen to Tom Lehrer’s song, We Will All Go Together When We Go, just to jolly ourselves up a bit. It will be on the net somewhere I am sure.

  20. Kelsonian says:

    Away from Townsville, bringing a show to outback Queensland for the winter, but just heard that the rates are out. My son said the early payment discount on his $1500 rates bill was $50 – 3.33% TCC website say’s it’s 10% ??? I wonder how many will take this up now it is not much of an incentive? So static rates meant no raise for those who didn’t pay early and a large increase for those like me who did.

    I believe that there is a 11% pa compound charge if overdue i.e. if one day over the 30 day period – the extra charge is for a whole month. I will be paying 29 days after due date now.

    • Guy says:

      For what its worth my rates are up 60 dollars for the half year, meaning in practical terms the bill for the year is 120 dollars more – its a 5 percent rise.

      Looking back on it this is nothing new, the credit review of 2011 said that rates would be going up around 5 percent every year ( at that time to cope with the costs of the future stadium). I’ve run around warning people for years – no one was interested.

      My understanding of the rates bill was that local governments are aiming for about 10 percent of the average wage earners wages per year. It doesnt matter if its townsville or anywhere else.

      As a general rule people don’t care, if their rates bills are being paid for by the government ie army/ centrelink they certainly don’t care. So what does this mean ? Well despite the complaints found here the future of townsville is labor at all levels.

      • The Magpie says:

        Don’t doubt your maths, but heavily doubt – indeed can’t see how it can be correct – about LG basing rates on 10% of income. How would a local council know how much someone earns, or how many people are working within the family? Or are you saying that the mythical ‘average’ wage from highly questionable government statistics is the benchmark? If that is correct, pretty rough on pensioners, eh?

        • Guy says:

          I just looked at the bottom of my bill and compared it to the bill of 6 months ago – up 60 dollars. Its a case of ” how i learned to stop worrying and love the bomb “. From my door knocking i discovered that few people actually cared about the rates going up – the only people that might be worried or annoyed would be working class ratepayers who lived in their own home.

          A pensioner has told me he gets something like a 1000 dollar rebate and other rebates – the rates going up won’t really affect pensioners

          If you are a renter you can negotiate your rent to rock bottom prices – rates rises for the renter are of no consequence.

          If you are on centrelink the government worries about the bill, one gentleman told me that he was on benefits – it didnt matter who was in government in local council he had his bills paid for him. No one on centrelink cares about the rates.

          If you are an investor you don’t care as much, rates and the like are a tax write off and given the chance you can deduct “expenses” to wipe out the rates rises.

          Factor into that about 80 percent of the public walking in to vote don’t know or care about anything, I am a minority. Taking part in elections gave me some invaluable understanding about how things work. In Plato’s allegory of the cave the man that escapes the cave and realises that the shadows don’t represent reality is regarded as a lunatic.

          When you factor in the voting demographics the liberals don’t have a prayer in townsville , now or in the future.

          As for the 10 percent of wages thing, it was my own extrapolation – judging that the council bill is back to climbing 5 percent a year. The way i look at the situation now is very much from the outside.

          • Kelsonian says:

            As self funded retirees we cop it every way. Greater rates, now no tip vouchers. Totally over these councilors!

  21. Footy fan says:

    It doesn’t get any worse than local tv news scooping the Townsville Bulletin.
    With the sweetheart deals the editor has done with the council, TEL and others including the Cowboys, the paper always has a huge head start on tv. That they have the gall to refer to some of these stories as “exclusive” is beyond belief.
    But the Cowboys deal let them down last week.
    The way the system works is the Cowboys provide the paper with media releases which are completely lacking in news and never questioned. It happens every week. One player whose turn it is to be on media duty “backs” one of team mates to do their job. The Cowboys staff use an old Joh line in referring to this practice as “feeding the chooks”.
    But it all backfired last Thursday when Channel 7 news went out to the Cowboys and actually interviewed Jason Taumalolo, who told them that young Cowboys playmaker Te Marie Martin was very disappointed that he wouldn’t be able to take on his old club, Penrith, on Saturday because of injury.
    This story went to air on Ch 7 on Thursday night but the next morning the best the paper could come up with was that Martin was in doubt for the game.
    They finally caught up on Saturday, two days later, reporting that Martin had been replaced by Kyle Laybutt.
    But even that was wrong. Laybutt didn’t even make the interchange bench, let alone the starting side.
    Pathetic, but what can you expect from a newspaper that relies on chook feed for its stories.

  22. The old peterbuilt says:

    Shit it’s all happening. The pie has a willing skanky ho, I’m gonna miss the Ssm vote and kim Jon fuckwhit is about to launch. Hopefully by then I’ll be tucked up in my igloo with a skanky Eskimo ho.

    • Old Moll says:

      Better hope the bride doesn’t open this blog or it’ll be colder at home than in your igloo.
      Have fun and don’t try to cuddle those big white koalas.

  23. Busted Chops says:

    Your insights on Mullet’s about-face with higher ambitions are right on the mark. Word was recently overheard that she’s been rabidly knocking on doors she previously incinerated on her way to the ‘top’ and has now found herself scrounging for supporters. She’s only one friend left in the game who sadly resides in Inala.

  24. Watcher says:

    As predicted on Sunday the Astonisher buried on page 8 what should have been the front page story about the Labor Partys continued bias towards the south east of the state.
    Wrap ups of the Cultural Festival and the Mt Isa Rodeo were more important to the editor apparently.
    A 25 per cent discount on power for the south east and at least 3 alternative power providers to choose from but we’re still stuck with one, Ergon Energy, at exorbitant prices.
    To add insult to injury they then let Scott Stewart get away with a fob off.
    As usual Coralee O’Rort and Aaron Harper went missing.
    The Astonisher obviously wont ask the important questions so I guess it is left to us mere residents to take our 3 Labor drones to task.
    So attention Stewart, O’Rort and Harper, please answer the following question.
    What if anything did you do to try to get an alternative power provider and the 25 per cent power discount for North Queenslanders?
    The question particularly applies to O’Rort who is supposed to be the Minister assisting the Premier in NQ. By now I think we all know what sort of assistance she is providing and it has nothing to do with helping out her constituents.
    Surely this is the final nail in the credibility coffin for the 3 Labor drones and Astonisher editor Ben Bogan.
    The sooner we are rid of them the better.
    We voters have the power to deal of the Labor drones come the election so come on News Ltd, surely you can park the Bogan somewhere else and give us our newspaper back. He would fit in very well in PNG.

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      But this is where Labor are confident that the average brainless dickhead in this town will vote him back in anyway, at least he is being honest and admitting he is screwing over everyone in the North,, and probably grinning at the same time.

  25. Sandgroper says:

    Don’t know Scott Stewart, but he presents in the media as a moron. At least his two State colleagues had the brains not to pick up the poisoned energy chalice handed them by Puddleduck.
    With no alternative suppliers, you are being dudded in North Queensland. We have the same problem with electricity in WA, but the entry of a new player into the gas market completely changed the game. Take my own case as an example of the benefits of competition……

    Kleenheat entered the market against Alinta, the established operator, and instantly offered a 15% discount which I grabbed with glee.
    Alinta promptly countered with a 20% cut so I decided to forgive their sins and stay with them.
    To my amazement, Kleenheat came back with an even better deal and I decided to count my blessings and called time on the game.
    Now that AGL has joined the fray the WA , I’m waiting for the next round in this slugfest.
    Play my cards right and I might soon be getting free gas.

  26. Interested Observer says:

    Lets talk council rates for a moment. Our general rates are calculated against your unimproved property valuation provided by the state government so they will vary across the city and makes it difficult to compare different properties. The utilities charges are the same unless you are on water watcher or do not have town water or sewerage connected to your property.

    However it is not difficult to simply compare your own notices from one billing period to another. I have four properties and notices have arrived for two of those properties. I have compared the total charges for the current notices for those two properties with the notices from March this year.

    The property valuations on both are unchanged so do not impact on the calculation. The general rate on both properties did not go down by 5% as the front page lie in the Bullsheet suggested at council budget time. The utilities went up and the early payment discount down by 5% so the overall end result is both of these properties went up by just under 2% and i will pay this financial year an extra $55.50 on property and and extra and an extra $49.00 on the other.

    The amount of the increases is not as important as the simple fact that the Mullet and the Bullsheet have lied to us again. I did not get a 5% decrease on on my general rates in both cases. Remember the property valuations remained the same. The overall notice including all charges increased. An increase is an increase stop telling lies. Next thing you know they’ll be telling us we don’t have a water crisis.

    For god sake I hope the bogan idiots in this city who continue to vote for these Labor liars will stop smiling while they are getting shafted and wake up to themselves. You are being lied to bent over like the rest of us. They don’t care if you vote for them or not. Yes I know wishful thinking.

    • Rusty Nail says:

      Not sure what happened with your rates IO, but my general rate “cents per
      $ valuation” actually did go down 5% so no lies there – to me at least. My Gross rates did come down by 2%, however as I always pay in time to get the discount the actual amount I will pay has gone up and I will be worse off overall by 1% compared to last year. I’m not on the water watcher scheme so that doesn’t come into play and my valuation hasn’t changed.

      • Scientician79 says:

        Haven’t calculated the exact %’s, but myself and several work colleagues today confirmed we all have had an effective increase of around $50.

        The Astonisher and Mayor Mullet can play semantics all they like, but an increase is an increase no matter how you crunch the numbers.

        Also noticed today on Twitter Council warned of delays if calling due to a high volume of calls, wonder why that would be? People expecting a 5% reduction confused about why there Rate’s Bills actually went up? Maybe council should redirect the phones to Ben Bogan’s office number, he seems good with spinning the numbers.

        • Dave Nth says:

          Waited half an hour to get through yesterday to make an inquiry. Finally got through and got some airhead who didn’t answer the question. I did complain about the length of wait at the end, she sounded like she didn’t care.

          Last year I had to call and I was talking to someone in under 10 minutes & they knew what they were talking about… Wonder if the call center is outsourced down south now too…

          • Dearie Me says:

            The call centre isn’t outsourced it is staffed by those staff who were not culled or who did not take voluntary redundancies. The remaining staff at council are treated with contempt by the new and far more knowledgeable and experienced management. It is likely that the call centre didn’t know the answer to your questions because they aren’t told what the changes were by the Impalers minions. Please be kind, the call centre staff are trying their best and they really do care.

  27. Ronny Rotten says:

    There’s an insurmountable problem with giving a conscience vote on SSM to the Federal Parliament.
    Has anybody ever met a politician with a conscience?

  28. Momentus says:

    Congratulations and great to see local MP Aaron Harper telling us in the Bulletin on Saturday ‘he has been very busy’ as you lot will soon only have to pay the price you see advertised at the petrol station. From January ‘next year’ this is near three years of hard work and may as well blame someone else for the delay and taking so long. Complicated stuff and we are busy. You can bet those fuel guys have already worked out another way to get around the new rules. Wait for those new signs in 2018. Today it is reported MP Grace Grace tells us(in the Bulletin)
    ‘‘I reckon I am probably the one of the best racing Ministers they (the Racing Industry) have ever seen in recent times’’. Obviously our newest Minister for Racing didn’t know the head or tail of a horse when our mate Big Russ was the Minister for everything including racing. The Magpie had mentioned some problem at the track. Today it is reported , remedial work on the Townsville track started before the tender process had been completed and things may have to get ‘rescoped’. Brings back some great memories of the good days in racing. The Townsville track is closed again after the last rebuild works were completed in mid 2015, and again with additional loss of many Townsville race meetings. Even Eagle Farm is having the same problem with no race meetings. Glad I don’t own or know a horse when I see one. You can Bet on that!

  29. Ross. says:

    Have just returned from Brisbane where I was informed that a large number of halls have been booked for 2nd December. One a trade union hall in Toowoomba was booked a number of months ago and the intended hirer has now been advised that they are now unable to hire hall on that date. Don’t be surprised if it is a December 2 election.

  30. Mike Douglas says:

    Pie, 60 comments by Monday afternoon is that a record?.The Magpie is growing faster than Mayor Mullets rates bills and that isn’t easy!.

    • The Magpie says:

      It would be glib to say better value too, but at least half a dozen or more of those are Magpie replies, which are counted.

  31. Watcher says:

    For what its worth I was told by a Labor heavyweight up here for the recent party gabfest that the election date would be 4 or 11 November

  32. Upper Ross says:

    Aaron Harper has sure been busy, but only looking after his self interest. He appeared on giant billboards re the 4 lane work on Riverway Drive, before the work even started…….

    • Dutch Reverand says:

      Interesting to note that the self promotion billboard at Riverway notes that the roadworks are stage 1. If that’s the case, when will stage 2 begin and where is it going to be ?

  33. Non Aligned Worker says:

    An astute lawyer may pick up clients that invested thousands of dollars into gardens and / or businesses on the JH promise that there is no water crisis.
    I am sure there is a class action case in there somewhere based on loss of either income or passive investment advice.

    • The Magpie says:

      Doubt it … as they say in the army, self-inflicted wounds, for believing what was even then a palpable lie and subsequently re-electing Mayor Mullet.

  34. Concerned citizen says:

    When I read the front page headlines this morning I thought the calls in this blog for the Bully editor to be replaced had finally been heeded.
    “NORTHERN IMPLOSION” and “TICKING TIME BOMB RESCUE MISSION” gave hope of a new editorial direction and the paper returning to its watchdog role, as opposed to its recent lapdog performance.
    But sadly the story was about yet another politician, the Deputy Prime Minister no less, not knowing he had dual nationalities.
    Then I took a closer look at the front page, in particular to a tick list in a box with a yellow background, which is printed not once but twice on the front page (over enthusiasm by a Mumbai sub editor?).
    The last tick box item reads “Not a citizen of a foreign country” and in the box instead of a tick or a cross, three letters “WTF”.
    Now even the older readers would know that “WTF” means “WHAT THE FUCK”.
    To my knowledge the word “fuck” has never been used by an editor anywhere in the world to get his message across, except perhaps in the Nazi Daily News.
    Sadly the editing of our newspaper has sunk to a disturbing new low and this, together with the fact it is repeated TWICE on the front page cannot be ignored.
    It is no use complaining to the paper, it is already an expert in protectionism.
    So do what I’m going to do and complain to the Press Council –


    While you’re at it, you might also mention the one sided reporting the editor obviously employs to protect Adani, Mayor Jenny Hill and the council, Townsville Enterprise, the Queensland Labor Government and Townsville Airport.

  35. Kenny Kennett says:

    I get so frustrated when I see footage of the House of Representatives and Kathy O’Toole is sitting up behind Shorten doing the occasional noddy and pretending that she knows what she’s listening to. All smug collecting a big pay packet for doing fuck all. Each time she has a different $500 hair do and an outfit that no doubt comes from some glitzy fashion shop. It’s about time you earned you pay packet lady. You got in on preferences only you Tool and even Ewen Jones was occasionally seen when he was ejected from Parliament. You don’t even know how to do that. Many members of the House (on all sides) are active and actually do things. You are a number only. I hate what these fools are doing (or not doing) for Townsville. It is so reminiscent of Mike Reynolds era of local and State politics.

  36. Jatzcrackers says:

    BTW belated birthday wishes old bird ! Do we have to cut you in half and count your rings to see how old you are ??

    • The Magpie says:

      Thank you, BiscuitBoy, but may The ‘Pie point out the term for his ring is ‘cloaca’, and he only has one.

  37. The Owl says:

    Nothing on local television news last night about the Labor Govt arranging another power provider with a 25 per cent discount for only the south east of the state so I called a mate who works in the industry and he told me that the Labor Party was going to spend so much money with his network in the lead up to the coming State election that they are not prepared to risk losing that by telecasting negative stories that may offend the Premier.
    I guess the same applies to newspapers.
    Surely they couldn’t have all negotiated a deal on this.

  38. Old Mudpicker- The Radical Conservative says:

    To lose one Minister for Northern Australia is careless, but to probably lose two.
    Deary me.

  39. Grumpy says:

    Shorty Shorten seems rather quiet on whether any ALP members have been caught up in this dual citizenship brouhaha. Be rather remarkable if there were not at least one or two, given Labor’s multicultural gang in Canberra. watch them flock to claim sanctuary when the High Court hands down its ruling on the ones honest enough to put their balls on the line.

    Meanwhile, at State level, Half-Way Harper is desperately checking to see if he relinquished his membership of Dumbfuckistan.

  40. Sandgroper says:


    How would you like to give some real kicks to the Gilded Few and all the other opportunists who are ruining the Townsville we once loved?

    North Queenslanders have been betrayed by the local media and the region’s elected representatives — together with a cohort of blow-in hatchet-wielders — interested only in ideological warfare and/or snuffling at the trough. They have been getting away with blue murder because, until The ‘Pie started pecking, there was nobody willing to hold them to account.

    The Magpie is one of a handful of investigative journalists and commentators in this city prepared to ask the hard questions and dig for the truth. And this blog provides a rare forum where people can speak their minds, whether they are right or wrong.

    Those in power don’t like having their ‘authority’ questioned, so they are starting to become very alarmed by this growing outbreak of free speech. That’s great, but there’s an easy way for all of us to increase the pressure and bring about some much-needed reforms.

    Just recommend The Magpie’s Nest to all your family and ‘friends’ — personal and in cyberspace — and in next to no time there will be tens of thousands logging-on to get an alternative view of local, state, national and international affairs. Best of all, they will be able to comment and read the views of real people commenting on the things that really matter — not confected issues designed to advance the interests of a select few.

    The blog’s commentators ( and, dare I say, its author) don’t always get it right and it attracts a fair complement of the mentally-challenged , but it’s still Townsville’s most informative and truthful source of news and views.

    Let’s spread the word and watch the rats scurry for cover.

    • Old Mudpicker- The Radical Conservative says:

      Alternative view Gropes, bloody hell, its like The Bolt Report on here 95% of the time. I miss Mutts. At least he used to provide some lefty commentary on here. Anyway, I just had a wonderful holiday in Tasmania and am back ready to annoy Grumbles and co.
      I am thinking of going to WA next year. I know you blokes over there are doing it tough so I will attempt to inject some funds into the states coffers.

      • Sandgroper says:

        Muddy, you’re right about the general tone of comments. It’s real shame there are so few lefties prepared to put their views up for scrutiny or with enough brains to present a convincing argument.
        Glad you’re heading for WA. We need to get back some of our GST money the parasite states have stolen.

        • Old Mudpicker- The Happy Socialist says:

          Bloody hell Gropes. You want me to have brains now to post on here. That my friend, is a bridge too far.
          What time of the year is it best to visit WA. My wife would like to see wineries and wildflowers. I am just the designated driver.

          • Sandgroper says:

            The flowers are starting to show their little heads right now, but the weather is bloody awful. Best time for them is later in August or early September when the sun should also be shining on the wineries.
            Let me know when you’re heading west, Muddy, and I’ll give you and the missus the grand tour of Perth and Fremantle. Will even beg enough change from the kids to put fuel in the Rolls, if that won’t offend your socialist sensibilities. (I just love driving it, wearing my Trump cap, to lunch with my mates from the ABC).

          • The Magpie says:

            ‘Flowers showing their little heads’!?! Shining sun? mate, I’m starting to wonder about you.
            Are you coming to a late lifestyle decision, as they say? Bit of a bummer.

          • Sandgroper says:

            Always promised you’d be the first if I decided to change, old pal. Anyway, I reckon those bromides they laced our tea with during Nashos to get our minds off the ladies is finally starting to work

      • Ezra Pound Axe King says:

        We try, but you know, the righties do tend to just scream and scream until nothing else can be heard lately…

        • The Magpie says:

          You poor, poor thing.

        • Bemused says:

          The left leaning followers of The Pie aren’t so much shouted down, as quietened by the performance of the Townsville administration at all levels I would imagine…

          • The Magpie says:

            The ‘Pie trusts that we interpret ‘the left leaning followers of The ‘Pie’ means people who read the blog and does not refer to the old bird’s ideology – one of the strengths of this blog – by accident not design – is that The ‘Pie does not censor comment (except for the usual legal reasons and he seems to have missed a few of them, according to our legal foghorn, Bazza), and embraces issues from all sides on their merits and opposes on the same basis. Drives people nuts.

          • Old Hack says:

            You’ve nailed it, Bemused. How can they defend the indefensible?
            And I love it when Muddy talks about “Our Jenny.” Doesn’t she proclaim to all and sundry that she’s an independent.

  41. Hercule Poirot says:

    To answer the Blogger (after a several reds now into the Port) I can’t Find the Blog Re Tom Lehrer’s Song/ Track It’s on U -Tube Live But No Visual. U need to scroll thru 1-2 pages (It’s removed from Spotify.).

    • Sandgroper says:

      Lehrer was one of my heroes in student days. And his black satire is as relevant and funny today as it was more than half a century ago.
      A review in the New York Times in the early 60s summed up the feelings of the po-faced US Establishment at that time when it said: “Mr Lehrer’s muse is unfettered by such inhibiting factors as taste.”
      ‘Tom Lehrer In Concert’, which contains some of his best songs, is still available on CD in some stores and via the internet. Do yourself a favour and check him out. You will laugh until the tears run down your leg.

  42. Cantankerous but happy says:

    I am glad to see the majority of Townsville residents taking te time to keep their gardens and lawns with a tinge of green, driving around the suburbs many footpaths have turned up their toes but most of the lawns are hanging in there and gardens looking quite good, all of this whilst still maintaining a daily usage if less than 100 megalitres a day, so what this tells us is what many have thought all along, the greatest waste of water in this town was by the council itself, its own parks and gardens dept simply failed to adjust, the watering of roads and concrete that many complained about for so long has finally been addressed by necessity. The big question now remains is why the fuck we are spending $220 million on a second pump when the one we have has been used for a total of 140 days in the last 10 years, even the stadium will be used more days than that.

  43. The Magpie says:

    From the international Guardian … no words needed.

  44. Grumpy says:

    And a big welcome back to Muddy and his endless store of puerile one-line zingers.

    C’mon, Gropes, you don’t expect the Lefties to come up with cogent thought, do you?

  45. The Gnome from Nome says:

    The headline in this mornings Astonisher is a load of populous bullshit re the LNP’s pledge to support a State of Origin NRL match in the new Stadium in 3-4 years time.
    Please LNP, stick with a new coal fired base load power station and don’t enter in the bullshit race for votes with the State of Origin match. You are suggesting that the taxpayers stump up $8 million to the NRL for lost ticket sales…….. you are surely joking !!!!

    • The Magpie says:

      REMEMBER THIS: this race to the bottom in populist pledges is EXACTLY how we got the highly questionable stadium in the first place. The more things change etc.

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      I have been to origins in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, I would love to see an origin game in Townsville, chances of it happening, very slim, is it a waste if money, absolutely, chances of me being there if it does happen 100%.

      • The Magpie says:

        reckon you’ll be able to get a ticket … start saving up now, plus a week’s pay for a hot dog and a warm beer.

  46. Mike Douglas says:

    Struggling Charters Towers road retailer was surprised when a couple of Cathy O’fooles team turned up unannounced.The business owner who is struggling to pay the rent or even wages was excited thinking they were there to talk high electricity prices, rates, unemployment, 20% of the businesses closed along Charters Towers rd was left gobsmacked when they asked if she would put a vote ” yes” for same sex marriage.So voting “yes “is Cathy O’fooles priority for Townsville.Why, because Bill Shorten told her so.

  47. The Owl says:

    When are the idiots at the Astonisher going to wake up that nobody believes any promises of an an Origin game in Townsville UNLESS one comes from the ARL/NRL. Anything else is just a bullshit beat up.

  48. Lord Howard Hertz says:

    It is rare that I would agree unreservedly with you, Muddy, but today’s the day!

    I too applaud the Yarra Council on their decision to move the Australia Day date.
    I do think, though, now they have a free day on their civic calendar, it would be appropriate for them to designate it to a cause and/or someone who has also fought against the yoke of established hegemony the world over, the capitalist/imperialist policy of invasion, and has sacrificed all for the cause of word unity and justice. Surely, given the Yarra Council’s admirable sensibilities to recognise the downtrodden, they will vote unanimously for my nomination of this valiant man (who might also get their nomination for Father Of The Year).

  49. The Magpie says:

    Interesting to note that the State Of Orgin game in Melbourne at the MCG on June 6 2018 is now practically sold out … only 1% left at 11am today.
    Means the NRL now has northwards of $12million on which to earn interest for the next few months. Prices range from $118 to $472, so the $12m figure is based on a guessed average around $180.

    The MCG holds 100,000, give or take. Townsville new you beaut, state-of-the-art, world class venue will take 25,000. With an $8million taxpayer subsidy from Queenslanders, average price here will work out around $160 per ticket.
    Yet to hear what the NRL has to say about a Townsville game … be a great thing for us, but is the Astonisher (sigh, yet again) raising unreasonable expectations in the hope of selling a few more papers? Nah, they wouldn’t do that wouldn’t do that. Would they?

    And even if they’r right, and a SOO is played here, wonder how taxpayers outside the north (or even including the north) feel about subsidising a sport played and administered by millionaires.

    • Scientician79 says:

      The cynical part of me suggests this is cheap vote getting exercise that will be quickly swept into the “oh well we tried” file shortly after the election.

      Latest idiotic idea connected to this distraction is to run ferries from the Casino to new Stadium site via Ross Creek. Not sure where you get a ferry that operates on mud, or can get past the Lowths Bridge.

  50. Cantankerous but happy says:

    More pipe dreams for the masses in the astonisher today, this time a new fairy terminal, just a brain fart from someone at Sealink who has been prompted by someone at Labor HQ to make an announcement wheatear they are ready to or not. The comments that followed from the Mullet, Stewart, O Rort and even that prize dunce Harper who’s electorate is 20km away is as clear indication to all the Ben Bogan will have a clear biased towards Labor once again in this election campaign.

    • The Magpie says:

      The ‘Pie was much amused with this stumble bum government making an announcement that it has ‘fast tracked’ (meaning in time for the election, a project that is being paid for by the private sector … if it actually happens. Can’t see any commercial reason for Sealink to stump cash on a field of dreams theory of build it and they will come. Funny way to do business.

    • Sandgroper says:

      Love the idea of a “fairy terminal.” A surefire way to boost gay tourism — or perhaps just the bottom of the garden from whence come most of the current council’s planning decisions.

  51. Dave Nth says:

    Election announcement must be nigh, drove up Peak Downs Hwy yesterday, near Moranbah saw no fewer than 3 candidate billboards. 1 ALP with Brunker and ON with 2 Cox…

  52. Watcher says:

    Here we go again another project including a hotel.
    That’s 3 new hotels now in less than 2 weeks. Wonder where the tourists are going to come from to make them viable. Mayor Mullet seems to think people will flock to Townsville to see the Cowboys stadium, swim in the lagoon copied from Cairns and Airlie Beach or ride on her ferry service up the Ross Creek mud flats to a stadium which will be smaller than the existing one.
    Then to cap it off Mayor Mullet decides (the council actually but the councillors are only there to make up the numbers) that a new theatre complex will be built next to the stadium rather in the Queens Hotel development. Ok so where is the car parking for the stadium and the theatre. Theres nowhere near enough for a Cowboys game so imagine the debacle when the Cowboys and the theatre are both full on the same night.
    And the Astonisher prints all this bullshit without even challenging the facts or asking a single question.
    Yes, Labor is going to get a huge leg up in the coming election campaign from a newspaper which has been protecting and promoting the Labor Government for months.
    Wouldnt have anything to do with election advertising would it.

    • The Magpie says:

      The more the Astonisher continues on its merry path, and despite all the evidence to the contrary, believing they are making their way back into the hearts and minds of the people, The ‘Pie is beginning to believe they are just stupid, leaderless and clueless.

  53. The Magpie says:

    Notice that Eric (Erica) Abetz says changes to SSM laws will lead to people marrying inanimate objects like the Sydney Harbour Bridge.


    inanimate |inˈanəmit|
    not alive, esp. not in the manner of animals and humans

    Bit rich coming from him, his wife did, didn’t she?

    • Grumpy says:

      Hah! Reminds me of the time Cory Bernardi’s wife was asked why their marriage was so successful. “It’s simple. “, she said, “We are both in love with the same person. “

  54. The Magpie says:

    The ‘Pie thinks Hanson made a very valid point that needed to be made. She has long preached, and others denied, that if you remove the burka, you will find underneath a hideous, Machiavellian terrorist determined to wipe out Australia’s personal freedoms. Personally The ‘Pie didn’t believe it

    … until yesterday, when she took off her burka.

    • Sandgroper says:

      The stunt was probably devised by James Ashby, Hanson’s toxic chief-of-staff, who seems to have more political lives than the proverbial cat. It perfectly illustrates the infantile mindset of One Nation and its followers.

  55. The Owl says:

    Don’t know if you are allowed to post comments on Rabieh Krayem at the moment but he is in today’s Astonisher claiming to have helped build the existing Cowboys stadium. His involvement was to supervise the players laying grass on the mounds on the eastern side of the ground (the stands were built later). It poured rain on the day of the first game and the grass on the mounds came unstuck. This of course was after he had staged a publicity stunt by sleeping with his teddy on the field the night before the game.
    Now he’s somehow involved with the new stadium. Good luck.

    • The Magpie says:

      Hey, no reason for The ‘Pie to not mention the Rabster, the old bird believes he has done no wrong in questioning this Phoenix-like character’s credentials, it is just legal bully Barry Taylor’s fevered imagination and abiding loathing of the unbulliable Magpie that thinks (hopes) so … doubt RK cares all that much but was clearly talked into it by a vindictive Foghorn Taylor. However, when The ‘Pie’s defence is filed, he will publish what is a public document to let you know why he feels justified in what he has written about RK.

      Any pics of the Rabster and The Bear?

  56. Cantankerous but happy says:

    The Telstra result yesterday highlights more of a problem for News Corp than many analysts simply glossed over, except for a few independents who highlighted the issue in detail on direct mail lists, we certainly didn’t here it on any of the News Corp services. What it highlights is Foxtel is a dud, it didn’t return one cent to Telstra over the last FY, it also makes one ask how much Telstra had to put in to cover their half of the carnage, News Corp wrote down their value of Foxtel by $225 million, Telstra don’t like writing values down on anything, it’s not their style, and the dividend hunters don’t like it. I would imagine the pressure and costs and performance of News Corps newspapers will increase of the coming year, in particular the subscriber numbers, expect to see big offers on Foxtel etc with newspaper subscriptions or home delivery bundles. I was in my Pie shop this morning, an empty Bulletin stand near the front door, ” sold out already” I enquired, ” no” she replied, “we don’t bother getting them in anymore” , good luck Bogan.

  57. Watcher says:

    Google “Rabieh Krayem images” and you get pics of Clive Palmer, Bazza Taylor. Mayor Mullett, Bob Katter, The Impaler, Kevin Dill, the Adani ceo (cant spell his name), Ben Bogan English, Puppet O’Callaghan, Dame Edna Everage, Messagebank Walker and Senator Jacqui Lambie.
    Sincere apologies to Dame Edna.

  58. Kenny Kennett says:

    I just wanted to make further comment to the rates discussion by firstly saying that the Astonisher has definitely tried to mislead the ratepayers by not mentioning (or trying to hide) the mechanics of the calculations as the average punter looks at it. What a cunning plan they and the Mullet came up with. Let’s be honest and say that the average Jo Blo looks at the bottom line to see if their rates go up or not. Generally speaking they don’t see that the discount applies ONLY to on average 45% of what you pay. I’ve gone back 3 years and by my calculations, this year has increased more than any other year with the discounted rate as I always pay by the due date. This year I don’t get my dump vouchers and I can’t use water that I pay for, and the wicked witch of the left has reduced the discount. Yep, that’s a real ‘battlers helper’. And the Mullet in the ‘From the Mayor’ address in the notice says: “The 2017-18 budget provides another rates break (when was the first one?) for battlers, delivers on our election commitments and ensures long-term prosperity for our city which has job creation (hahaha), water security (hahahahaha) and economic activation (of course, just read the Astonisher) for its cornerstones. Yes I’ll admit that I’m am so over the Hill.
    What a joke!!

    • Doxie says:

      “I’m so over the Hill”……so clever – and me too!! And did you notice the new “Waste Management Levy” which I’ve been advised by Council Customer Service is to cover the promised hard rubbish kerbside pickup, removal of dumping vouchers and something else I can’t remember because I was too ticked off to listen closely any further? This is the most destructive Council to which I’ve been privy in my 54 adult/voting years; the ratepayers are paying big-time and no doubt will for years to come. Would be good to see the likes of an Angus Smith, Perc Tucker, Richard Power once more in our midst.

  59. Alacan says:

    With so many managers having exited TCC one wounders how many electronic signatures of past management are held by their former employer.

    You might say even if they were it would be safe to say they wouldn’t be used. Think again

    Check very recent mail sent out to punters under the title and one assumes the electronic signature of a manager who left council over 4 months ago.

    Not being a legal begal wouldn’t know the lawful position on that ? But Geez Louise you’d have to think is very very average .. I’m sure that person would be suitably impressed

    Unless of course she has returned .. or working remote.. or not .. who would know .. more than likely not the impaler it would seem

    Geez id like to be proven wrong.

    • Bum Bite says:

      Please have another crack at writing your message so a reader can understand what your on about Hava-Can; and leave the stubbies alone this time. What the……….

      • The Magpie says:

        Err, don’t want bto take sides, but think the problem is your end, Bummer … is perfectly understandable to The ‘Pie.

        And while your her, just like to point out your comment involving a family member of a politician was trashed because it was irrelevant and silly reasoning. Otherwise, it was brilliant.

  60. The old peterbuilt says:

    Sitting at a little wine shop on the inner harbour at Victoria (British Columbia) . Pauline Hanson made the local TVs news last night. Canada has a couple of paulines and from what I see is the number is growing because of the actions of their leftist prime minister. He opened the borders and welcomed all. They now have approximately 5000 immigrants housed in tent cities and government buildings. Bill shorten currently has ;27 sitting federal members who want to reopen our borders ! Heading up country tomorrow so will take a coil of copper wire to string up in the trees so I can get signel so as to get the latest MPN.

    • Guy says:

      No – the future is labor

      Elections are won on slim margins and are won by one of the two political parties.

      In an election the voting block more often splits into two blocks. By appealing to and getting the votes of fringe votes that might not hold even 1 percent of the vote its enough to get you over the line.

      A senate seat in WA was won by one vote – think about that. If the other side had been able to offer support to a fringe group they would have won the seat.

      Labor is inclusive to all groups hence they will win the vote as fringe groups start growing in numbers. Candidates backed by religious groups have more clout, a voter previously non voting or undecided will be propelled towards the voting booth by their religious leader.

      The main thing purpose of a political party is to achieve power, your chosen candidate will need to be backed by various fringe groups to win the election. It would explain why amanda vanstone rubber stamped an italian crime boss into the country a few years ago.

      As the need to obtain the fringe vote increases we will see more volatility.

      • Dearie Me says:

        Inclusivity is inherent with brown paper bags Guy.

        Fringe groups are gaining popularity because our two main political parties are like bowls of porridge. One with milk and dog poo. One with milk and cat poo. The voters are struggling to tell the difference and they all leave a bad taste in your mouth.

        The election will go to whichever

        • Dearie Me says:

          Unfortunately, the election will go to whichever party has the resources to secure the most preferences from fringe parties with brown paper bags.

  61. Guy says:

    It also explains a reluctance by ASIO to arrest the recent jihadists planning to blow up aircraft in australia.

    British intelligence services forced the australian establishment to arrest them or they would simply out them publicly making our managers look very silly.

    Arresting jihadists has a direct effect on elections, when you arrest them the local community/ fellow travellers can vote the offending minister out or only accept a candidate that is also sympathetic to jihadists. Thats the dilemma – do they arrest them and lose votes or sit back and keep their voting margin that gets them over the line?

    • The Magpie says:

      So let’s see … Australian security forces arrested some whackos well advanced in plans to blow planes ONLY because they would be exposed by British experts as ‘very silly’ if they didn’t?

      That begs a VERY VERY serious question, Guy … are you related to Senator Malcolm Roberts? Or did your families share the same milkman?

      This is one of your most demented posts, that is up there for its – as always – entertainment value.

      • Guy says:

        It was said at the time ASIO wanted to “watch and wait”.

        Its a political thing

        If elections are won on slim margins, yes, arresting someone from a community for terrorism affects the bottom line.

        As i said before you’ve had a senate seat won on ONE vote.

        Either way it doesnt really affect me, its a point of interest you can have a think about.

        Yes be thankful i never got into council because you can be sure i would have been getting rid of as much dead wood as i could in council.

        Team hill is quite rightly swinging the axe on the dead wood because its not sustainable.

        • The Magpie says:

          There is help available, you know, Guy.

          • Guy says:

            Thats an ad hominem magpie

            Rebut the statement rather than dismiss it

            Its logical, slim margins means you get the vote wherever you can , its a no brainer. You get direct votes from the rank and file, true believers, the block vote where people have always voted that way.

            Thats good but if you want to win for sure you need preferences from fringe groups – the tail wags the dog. Just ask the labor or the liberal party. To be honest i find it hard it to believe i need to explain this, then again when elected politicians couldn’t be arsed to bother finding out if they were even eligible in the first place it explains quite a few things.

          • The Magpie says:

            Like the ‘Pie should rebut the statement ‘The earth is flat’.
            The ‘Pie cannot agree with your argument for the simple reason we would then both be wrong …but really, just don’t have the time right now.

  62. The Gnome from Nome says:

    Let us all be thankful that our Guy did not get the 50 something votes he needed to get elected to the TSV council in 2012. Maybe he forgot to make sure the local jihadists voted for him.

    • The Magpie says:

      HEY, pull yer head in Gnome and have a thought for the poor old ‘Pie … the old bird needs someone like Guy on the council, this is a humorous blog, if you haven’t noticed. Well, meant to be.

  63. Linda Ashton says:

    It’s what ISN”T in the WATER FOR TOWNSVILLE ACTION GROUP’s April report (19 chapters) that can blow a few more myths out of the water-security debacle. Curiouser and spuriouser. The next report will be short sweet and unambiguous. Wish your blog allowed jpgs Pie.
    If people are as concerned as they ought to be about the water management woes (not the available supply via a 36.5km superior pipeline with renewables option – please join. 13,000+ and growing daily fed-up ratepayers and voters are making the kind of informed noise that no politician likes to hear. It’s called ‘accountability’ through the power of social media.

  64. Linda Ashton says:

    Walker Street in the city. Take a trip down the busiest strip in the not-CBD. It’s called Memory Lane. 40-50 yrs ago it was a reasonably central geographic location but the inconvenient hill, squished city surrounds and pesky new postcodes have gone viral to the north and south, with huge new centres popping up like mushrooms. The self-inflicted Elliot Springs on the rocks venture will no doubt have undercover free parking, not-CBD plazas to die for where every shop is a lift ride away.

    I don’t visit the ghost town terrain very often 50 km round trip from Kelso cos I keep missing the regularly scheduled express public transport shuttle vehicles. I sometimes drive in for mtgs with councillors and city pollies when in WFTAG admin mode – stroll the vibrancy in awe as a treat after some thorny q and a discussions. Just one block (the main one) has 29 vacated, for lease, closing down or moved location shop-front signs. Public toilets? Another time perhaps. Parking inspectors seem to have the best takings on an hourly basis and the state of the spit-splattered, urine-stained pavements are gut-wrenching. No gurneying allowed during the year long level 3 restrictions. A cruise terminal’s first impression of the Ville? Oops.

    But raise the Lazarus Flounder Street mall-not mall-mall-not mall adnauseum, they must at great expense. Kick out the Rotary volunteer service group who’ve run the Cotter’s market for decades. Hope the new capitalist model will have shoppers flooding back. And CEO of the Chamber of Commerce is concerned about TSV airport not having an upgrade because “good first impressions are vital” to attract tourism, business investment, city appeal and a sense of excitement to explore first hand the attractive city, viewed from the window seats?????
    The TSV Airport is a new priority as the state budget allocated $225 million (even without an approved shovel-ready pipeline design??? That amount will only fund stage 1 of the Water Taskforce recommended 2-staged process. Are Council and the State both lobbying the Feds relentlessly, loudly, publicly and successfully to match the heroic state “full water security” solution? Meh. The TSV City Deal is the Fed’s firstborn child. It will sink or swim over water security- not an airport makeover.

    • The Magpie says:

      Umm, Linda, social media folk tell me one of the rudest things commenters can do is try to piggyback their own sites on someone else’s. Do it for one, then there will be howls to do it for others. Thus the deleted links.

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