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The Magpie

Sunday, May 5th, 2019   |   99 comments

Memo Mayor Mullet: Being Seen Through Is Not Transparency. The TCC Culture Of Secrecy Continues Apace.

Meetings behind closed doors to commit an undisclosed amount of ratepayer money to a vague notion of (yet again) attracting an international airline, and just what is the deal with that City Deal now, has it all been scuttled? The scurrying and squeaking behind the political skirting boards is getting more frantic.

Think we’re being taken for a ride at the ballot box? … you’d be right, with the system revamped to hoodwink the majority of voters. But The ‘Pie to the rescue with an explainer.

The ‘Pie spots some glib sayings during the week, which are simply wrong, wrong and wrong.

Also, an unexpected moment of clarity from our council,

….while off-shore,  our regular weekly visit to the Trumpistan gallery.

But first …

The Campaign Caravanserai Grinds On Across The Landscape, Stirring Up Apathy all Around

There has been enough said elsewhere about the triviality of the week’s campaigning, and the totally unedifying ‘leaders debates’, which have offered about as much probative value as that smugly orchestrated outrage on Q&A.

Candidates from both sides are dropping like flies, all caught out by some ancient un-PC social media posts, giving the finger waggers a field day. Makes you wonder who does the background checks for the parties … and what it says about their social media competence to begin with.

Our resident ‘toonist Bentley is still sceptical of many issues from both sides, but one in particular he thinks is utter tosh.

Shorten electric cars fin

Why is this even an issue in this election? Actually, come to think of it, it’s not, just a wish list distraction.

But our bright spark wannabee PM has the right power connections, when it comes to other sensitive issues, like his franking credits swoop on super funds. The very best advice is on hand for him, 24/7.


This is a campaign is search of a universal issue, a cross-generational punch-up starter. As it stands at the moment, the rampant glad-handing emptiness underlines the rampant disenchantment with big party politics … The ‘Pie is tipping a balance-of-power parliament.

Fear And Loathing At The Ballot Box

So you’ve listened to the pleadings, wheedlings and horror stories until your ears bleed, made what sense you can of it all (or simply believed whichever fairy tale you want), and now you stand in the pre-polling booth, wanting to get your duty over and done with, clutching two ballot papers roughly the length of War And Peace (more characters, but less plot). You’re ready to make your mark for your choice of who you want to lead this country. Or are you?

The House of Reps seems to be a doddle …

Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 9.20.15 am Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 9.20.29 amHmmm, seems relatively straightforward. Licking the pencil with a tentative tongue, you number the boxes, starting with 1 for your first choice, and then number on down in gradients of disgust until all boxes are filled, from most wanted to least wanted.

Whew, not so hard after all. Now let’s just knock off the Senate vote and head to the pub. As you unfold the Senate ballot paper, you think back to the puzzling advice from the polling officer – “Please watch your language sir, there are children around.’ Then you open it.

Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 9.25.07 am


But wait, there’s more …

Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 9.25.24 amWelcome to our loopy democracy at work. But hang on, it seems simple enough, if you vote above the line you just number at least 6 boxes, your first choice being number 1). But if you vote below the line, you must number at least 12 boxes, with the same priority of choice. Note the ‘at least’, as though that 12 isn’t enough. But no, you can spend a merry hour or two and number the whole lot if you want, you old academic, you.

But Here’s The Thing … A Trap For The Unwary

HOWEVER, what you do not do with your senate vote is replicate the voting preferences as you did with the Lower House, where your enter your descending order of disdain. In the Senate, you vote 1 to 6 above the line, or 1 to 12 if below the line, for the candidates you most want to see in the Senate. It’s like naming a team you want to take the field for you. Because if you vote further down for a candidates you least want, YOU ARE ACTUALLY CASTING A VOTE FOR THEM.

So wonder no more why we end up with fruit loops like Malcolm Roberts and Fraser Anning et al having the power to block laws decided by the people’s place, the House of Reps.

Researching all this, The ‘Pie was particularly taken with the practice sample provided on line by the AEC: he wonders if the imaginary names given aren’t actually pretty good description of the real parties in this election. You choose who’s who.

Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 9.48.04 am

In Passing

Couple of polar opposites in names way down the list in the Senate paper caught The Magpie’s eye.

hetty johnston

Bravehearts founder and champion of child protection Hetty Johnston is having another tilt at public office, numerous previous attempts being unsuccessful. The ‘Pie has met Ms Johnston on several occasions when he was taking Rupert’s shilling, and was impressed with her sincerity, compassion and commitment to her cause. And oh what might have been … Hetty’s most recent foray into the political arena was in 2015, when she ran for mayor of Logan City, but had to withdraw to care for her elderly mother. Oh, just think what heartache and public expense might have been avoided had she won. But then (sigh) as they say, if my aunty had balls, she would’ve been my uncle.

And at the other end of the zealots stable we find one Kim Vuga, of the Love Australia Or Leave Party. On all evidence, Ms Vuga, a simplistic vulgarian which, as her party name suggests, campaigns on issues based on racism, packaged up as bogan-style patriotism, but is actually an attack on free speech; she is from the Malcolm Roberts School of foam flecked shouty single issue nuisances. But accidents happen and Roberts undeservedly actually did fall into a Senate spot before being turfed out on grounds of nationality – he was found to be a Martian.

But you can bet a vote for Ms Vuga will be a vote for an old BBF of hers.

hanson and Vuga

All of which is just one small example of the fruit salad of candidates from which we can choose to govern us.

A T-Shirt For The Times


Our mates at the wonderful piss-taking publication the Betoota Advocate reckon the ladies of their local CWA have created the ideal T-shirt for this election campaign … and no argument from The ‘Pie about that.


And one Magpie reader has come up with a re-cycling idea which is sure to make hasten the associated activity.



Adani continues to be an on-again-off-again issue in the Federal election, and the heat generated could a handy power source in itself. It also had a variety of people trotting out some banal and incorrect analogies.

And the first to get it wrong was this bloke in the Astonisher story.

Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane urged the Government to get on with approving the $60 billion in resources projects in the approvals pipeline. “It’s great to celebrate the investment secured over the last four years, but no one won a race running backwards,” he said.

Well, Ian, matey, that’s just plain wrong, and will come as a big surprise to this bloke.

backward running Screen Shot 2019-05-01 at 9.28.11 am

Then the Adani issue grew from a thorn to a big rusty nail in the side of The Tool, who has been ducking and weaving on the Carmichael Mine issue because of the confusion in the Short Un’s camp about the correct line. From the Astonisher again.

Ms O’Toole re-affirmed Labor had no plans to review Adani’s approvals but said the mine needed to go through due regulatory process.

“That is really important … you can’t just throw sticks to the ground, put a roof on it and call it a house,” she said.

Well, in this country, you can actually, dearie. And some are still forced to do so.

Gunya bibliography-badalya

They’re called gunyahs.

The Hermit Kingdom Of Jen Kim-un

Jenny Hill

The closed door culture was at its best with the Townsville City Council this week, when last Tuesday’s meeting went into closed session to discuss that item we mentioned last week … the ominous sounding ‘International Flight Attraction Incentives Contribution’.

After the secret session, which decided to ‘proceed with the recommendations of a confidential report’, we learned that the council will be in cahoots with Townsville Airport to lobby for direct flights from Singapore’s Changi airport to Townsville. But things weren’t too clear in the Astonisher’s report, when Mayor Mullet was quoted “We won’t be offering incentives per se to the company. It’s really more about what we’ll contribute to a marketing campaign.’ That of course means paying in part for advertising, which ain’t cheap.

Several questions spring forth like startled gazelles.

For a start, which company is being referred to, the QAL-owned Townsville Airport, or the targeted airline (which wasn’t named)? And Tony Raggatt neglected to ask what one would think was an obvious question – how much are the ratepayers stumping up for this, this time? It may well be justified but we are entitled to know, aren’t we? And who did the confidential report on which the decision was based , how much did it cost, and when did council vote to commission it, it’s the first we’ve heard of it? And here’s the biggy on a running issue … why is the council doing this, and not Townsville Enterprise, which is laughingly billed as ‘Townsville’s peak marketing and tourism body’? (Again we must ask, just what the bloody hell do TEL do, except claim credit for the work of others?) There was some talk that TEL would be involved, which is interesting since the mayor is the vice-chair of the TEL Board to chairman Kevin ‘Rhymes With’ Gill who is also the head of Townsville Airport. All using public money for this venture.

Gotta love this town.

And Wither The Much Vaunted ‘City Deal’?

As The ‘Pie understands it, to get City Deal money, a council development corporation had to be created, which would also hold council land that is deemed suitable to develop ‘in partnership with private enterprise’. Why this insistence on yet another layer of bureaucracy – which in the wrong hands, is an invitation to corruption, a la Ipswich – is anybody’s guess, but as it stands as of now, that’s all out the window.

It would be reasonable to assume that there was no activity, no appointment of new directors, no returns, no report since incorporation.  Maybe they just realised is was a dud idea that they were never going to be able to manage.


Company Type: Australian Proprietary Company
Registered Office: 103 WALKER STREET, TOWNSVILLE, 4810, QLD
No. of Current Company Directors: 3

Name: THOMSON MATTHEW ALLAN Appointed 23/11/2017
Name: YOUNG ADELE CATHERINE MARIE Appointed 23/11/2017
Name: HILL JENNIFER LORRAINE Appointed 23/11/2017

Company Secretary:
FINLAYSON GRAEME ROBERT Appointed 23/11/2017

No annual returns or financial reports were recorded by ASIC for this company.

And it will be wound up in a matter of weeks.

So this company dies from neglect. But there is no explanation as to why all this has happened, especially as it is pivotal to the City Deal worth tens of millions.
This May Come As a Surprise, But …

Screen Shot 2019-05-04 at 8.55.15 pm

The Magpie was impressed with the new TCC CEO Mike Chiodo’s forthright, plain English statements in today’s paper regarding the great news for Townsville that the second stage pipeline looks like being built concurrently with stage one, which is already underway.

Compare this with the usual patronising political duck and weave:

Mr Chiodo said the council could not wait any longer to ensure the appropriate design was in place for stage 1 but that they would still be in a position to use the design, with some alteration and by moving the pumps to Clare, if a funding announcement was made by late May or early June.

“The fact that we are proceeding with design shouldn’t be construed as anything other than we as an organisation wanting to meet our original commitment and being in a position to facilitate stage 2 should that come through after the election,” Mr Chiodo said.

The ‘Pie just hopes there’s more where that came from … doesn’t have to be stuff with which we agree, but just so long as we are respectfully informed in plain language.

Mayor Mullet, take note.

Chewbacca’s Last Flight To The Stars

Actor Peter Mayhew, best known as the man behind the Star Wars cuddly cult hero Chewbacca, departed our planet during the week. By all reports, one of the good guys in life, Mayhew was lauded from all sides as a funny and likeable bloke. And the man who brought to life one of the most memorable movie characters.

But he may be encountering a problem on his final mission, according to the New Yorker’s Avi Steinberg.


The Week In Trumpistan

Attorney General Barr’s toady antics is attempting to shield President Agent Orange from the damning details of the Mueller report has been the focus of attention during the week, along with a shameful milestone for the president.

139_224589 cjones05042019_1 118_224735 42_224580 Russian meddling 73_224640 lk050219dapr 050119tentousandr 29_224629 11_54 medival metaphors Screen Shot 2019-04-27 at 9.23.37 am20190430edstc-aAnd …



The Statue of Limitations

staue of limitations Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.33.03 pm


That’s yer lot for today, folks, please keep up the erudite, high intellectual tone of the political comments on the blog, heh heh heh … and, hey,  if you’re pretty financially flush just now, a helping hand with a donation would be most gratefully received, the how to donate button is 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. Elephant says:

    The list of senate candidates (how did the root “candid” get in that descriptor?) demonstrates clearly that a Senate in Australia is no longer a noble house of review, because it has been gate-crashed by egos and gravy train riders. Pollies don’t need two bars to brawl in; ALL our senates should be scrapped. It would save us a fortune.

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      Agreed, and given the fact that an individual in Tasmania has about 12 times the voting power of someone in NSW in the senate it is now just a farcical joke and should at least be changed to suit modern times.

      • Alex DeLarge says:

        Was not that the original intent? To ensure that the more populous states did not overwhelm the little ‘uns?

        However, as Pie says, a system that gives grossly disproportionate power to nut jobs from the smaller states – eg Anning, Roberts, Lambie, Brown et al.

        The absolute power to veto the House of Reps (which may have a clear majority) needs to be revisited.

        • The Magpie says:

          Indeed, the Senate powers should be looked at, as it is based on the British House of Lords, where the powers of veto have always been wielded by a bunch of hereditary inbred, syphilitic drunks with appalling hygiene and fascist sympathies.

          • No More Dredging says:

            ‘Pie, just a few days ago on ABC RN there was a fascinating show about the development of the upper house/s in Australia. At one point there was a proposal to create an upper house along the lines of the hereditary House of Lords in Westminster but this was rejected out of hand. What we have in all states except Queensland and in the Commonwealth is a kind of evolved form of upper house that is actually unique in Australia although it has a lot of form similar to the HOL in England. Lots of people think a ‘house of review’ is a good idea. Unfortunately we don’t have the luxury of starting from scratch – although Queensland doesn’t seem any more or less primitive from having dispensed with its upper house about 1922.

          • The Magpie says:

            Agree with all that, but The ‘Pie was suggesting that the Senate’s ‘powers’ be reviewed, not the bicameral system itself. Can’t put the Senate out of business, we’ve got enough jobless loafers already.

          • Guy says:

            I visited Britain back in 2011 just before the london riots for three weeks. After landing i jumped on the london underground and headed straight for Westminster abbey and parliament both at the time intact. It was here on the tour of parliament i discovered something interesting , the house of lords has NO official veto they are a purely advisory body. If something is rejected by the house of lords it is only good manners to accept that advice , yes or no.

            As an aside note – you can ditch this anecdote if you want.

            After lingering for a long, long while in Westminster hall after the tour, strangely i felt this journey wasn’t complete so i decided to wander around parliament square where various lunatics/ my people gather. There was only one old lady there (as far as i could see) that day with a sign. Jet lagged and tired of walking i sat down and started talking with her. After half an hour the conversation turned loaded and ominous – there was a large/ massive riot coming SOON. I asked her how she knew and she told me she had been watching and listening and the mood on the streets was turning. Having been out of the country who was i to argue? Perplexed i left the square and never returned. Three weeks later when the plane touched down in sydney i started hearing reports of large riots and fires being started. Turns out she was right – she might still be there with her sign. I wonder what else she will tell me if i ever return.

          • The Magpie says:

            An interesting vyarn, Guy.
            Why would The ‘Pie want to ditch your ‘anecdote’, especially since it is a clarification of something mentioned. The House of Lords lost the power of veto in a 1911 Act, and were only able to delay legislation for two years. In 1949, a supplementary Act reduced this to one year. Parliament has passed only seven or so bills against the rulings of the Lords.

        • Cantankerous but happy says:

          It has been discussed for years reforming the senate, I can remember putting up a plan years ago when that Brian Haridine was getting all sorts of stuff for Tasmania by just being a pest. The best one we had was that each state had 6 senators then 1 extra for each one million people in that state, which still supported the lesser states but not to the 12 to 1 bias we see currently. On today’s population it would be roughly,
          NSW 14
          VIC. 12
          QLD. 11
          WA. 9
          SA. 7 nearly 8
          TAS. 6
          ACT and NT would still get 2 each

  2. crabclaw says:

    Pie, It astounds me that so few people know who Hetty is or even heard of Bravehearts. What the hell are people reading??
    It unfortunate she doesnt have the financial backing to build her public profile and register as a party as her contribution would surpass many who sit now.

    On a side issue, Im sure you have read some of the online comments when an article is written about her or she has been asked to comment on a situation where a child has been abused or killed. It is quite scarey the abhorrent mindsets of the people we share our houses, cars, streets and workplaces with.

  3. Bentley says:

    I’m led, by a usually reliable source, to understand that pollies receive franking credits via their superfunds even though they do not pay tax. Am I right?

    • Mike Douglas says:

      Bentley , I don’t believe tax wise it would make sense for a Politician to commence Tris “ transition retirement income stream” as well as pay the tax on the Salaries they receive and receive franking credits payments .I was under the impression Mark Latham has to go off his Super now that he will receive a NSW upper house income .

    • No More Dredging says:

      Bentley, are you referring to currently serving politicians or retired politicians living off their super?

      • Bentley says:

        NMD, I’m referring to the earnings of industry super funds, which I understand include franking credits as well as dividends. If our retired and in fact our current pollies are members of such a fund, which will inevitably have a growth component, they are benefitting from franking credits. So why should the retiree who manages his own fund be penalised? I don’t get it. Furthermore I cannot understand why the Treasurer doesn’t emphasise the hypocrisy of the opposition. Or have I got it wrong?

        • Mike Douglas says:

          Bentley , you are on the money ( literally ) and if journalists could get straight answers from Bowen and Shorten they would have a chance . Let’s not forget about who benefits from Industry funds ? , Many ex labor and current Union leaders who are on the boards including Chloe Shorten . It’s Hypocrisy but typical Labor wanting to control people’s assets including vertical integration control .

  4. Pat Coleman says:

    The labor party control room just had 2 fits at the ALP launch, when Anna finished her speech loud scripted applause , then she announced the welcome to country – the applause so subdued they cut the sound so you couldn’t hear the clap sticks. Subdued applause when they finished but it got loud scripted again for Pat Dodson. Woopsie daisy

    It was on as I turned the tele on.

    • The Magpie says:

      Heard it on radio, and credit where it is due, The Short Un got in the best line of this entire campaign so far, when looking at an historical point, he said ‘In 2017, Malcolm Turnbull – pause – a name you’ll only hear at a Labor conference …’

  5. upagumtreeperson says:

    Magpie, I thought all Council meetings were open to the public. How can a public forum be closed to its citizens?

    • The Magpie says:

      Closed sessions can be held because the matter to be discussed is Commercial in Confidence … might give away trade secrets – or hahhaha oh stop me – intellectual property. This is the most abused and cynical statute in the entire LG lexicon. Much favoured by the marginally or completely corrupt, to lie about, say, ownership of an airstrip, but only to other councillors without the pesky (and in Townsville’s case) completely bought media.

      • Mike Douglas says:

        T.C.C . 19/20 budget should be released in the next few weeks and details how 18/19 will finish . 2020 is a Council election year so will the Mullet do any fiscally responsible reduction of the Councils $390 mil debt ?. I think we all know the answer to that .

  6. Dave Sth says:

    Whilst I mostly agree with the Pie this time not so, I think what Hetty does is admirable but she lost a lot of respect from me when she remained silent & still does about the abuse of a 14 year old at John Oxley Correction Centre but seems very vocal when LNP hold office. Sorry can’t help thinking she’s another independent in name only. I support her & her work up till the ballot box but draw the line there. We already have enough proxy labor votes in the parliament…

    Realised I hadn’t change my electoral address the other day so will be prepolling tomorrow, am going to be voting formally this time in the HOR but ALP, LNP & greens last places…

    • The Magpie says:

      HOR???Or is that ‘whore’ as in the Sex Party?

    • No More Dredging says:

      If you put your “last places” in that order and you are voting in the Herbert electorate then your vote will end up

    • No More Dredging says:

      Dave Sth, if you put your “last places” in that order and you are voting in the Herbert electorate then your vote will end up with Labor, irrespective of what you do with your first few preferences. Can’t understand why mature adults don’t work out how preferential voting works – although if you read the likes of Paul Kelly in The Australian and take their word for it you might believe anything.

      • Dave Sth says:

        NMD, IMO opinion OPV is the way to go I have considered CPV undemocratic especially if compelled to vote; hence probably some of my ballots when I don’t see any viable candidatebinvalid like 3 years ago. Sheesh how many more acronyms can I slip in…

      • More Dredging Please says:

        I get all my advice from Paul Murray in the Bulletin.

        Andrew Bolt makes sense as well


        • No More Dredging says:

          More Dredging Please, once you’re down to Andrew Bolt what is left to dredge from the bottom of the barrel? And what did you learn from Bolt or Murray about how-to-vote in the seat of Herbert – not so much about who might get your first few preferences but who you place ahead of who between the LNP and ALP – because one or the other is going to win in this seat. And what do Murray and Bolt have to say about voting Clive Palmer into the Senate? Does anyone in Townsville really think that Clive offers anything constructive for Queensland when we know that he will only be looking after his own interests – and how do his interests even vaguely coincide with any other person’s? Whatever bill he is racking up promoting his party in this election will be paid from the wreckage of that industrial wasteland at Yabulu. In other words, Queensland taxpayers will have to clean up that mess because Clive will have squandered all the capital. It’s so funny. We’re all laughing at his audacity and he is guffawing at us – suckers one and all. But you won’t hear that from Bolt.

    • Dave Sth says:

      Just did my duty. Nannete hope you are up to it if you somehow jag it. I based my decision after cross referencing some of the info I gleaned here. Thanks Pie & commentors as I was in a conundrum.

      Now watching jets come & go waiting for mine. Already after this weekend missing the north. Too bad we have utter imbiciles running the place otherwise I wouldn’t have needed to look further afield…

  7. salty dog says:

    When it comes to birds, I guess we would prefer a black-throated finch to an Indian mynah.

  8. One legged tap dancer says:

    I know the Mullet reads this blog so hope she takes the time to watch this video of what happens when a dam wall breaks.
    This is only a levee wall, so imagine what would have happened if the Ross River Dam wall collapsed during the recent flood. Townsville gonski.

    • Dave of Kelso says:

      When taking a walk on the dam wall, the level of the drift wood shows that the water did come a fair way up. I encourage all to have a look. It is a nice time of the year such a stroll.

  9. I’ll be plucked says:

    Labor Day March Chanters – ‘1, 2, 3, 4 we don’t know what we’re marching for; 5, 6, 7, 8 we’re just union thugs, old mate’!

    • No More Dredging says:

      So put Labor last. I have already. And maybe with the loss of Herbert to the LNP we will move closer to a Shorten minority government – the best possible outcome if I had a choice. But please don’t vote for Palmer’s United Australia Party or Pauline Hanson’s One Nation (ie. Malcolm Roberts) in the Senate – that would be cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      • More Dredging Please says:


        I agree with your voting advice fro the seat of Herbert. I did it myself.

        I don’t agree with your opinion in respect to a Shorten minority government. I would be content with a Morrison minority government with Plibersek as opposition leader.

        I think Radeck as our local member would be an absolute winner in a minority government scenario of either variety.

        See we’re not so different after all.

        Who da thunk?

        • The Magpie says:

          Get a hotel room.

          • No More Dredging says:

            ‘Pie, I’m in witness protection. A hotel room isn’t an option.

        • No More Dredging says:

          MDP, you are in La la land. You (we actually) have to deal with reality. Shorten will lead Labor and Plibersek will be deputy for the time being. But I don’t want to see an Abbot Point-style coal dump in Townsville and that is what we are promised by Cathy O’Toole’s Galilee Basin pledge. That’s the only reason (for me) to dump Labor in Herbert. Morrison is toast and good riddance – there’s so much dead and dumb wood in the LNP it just has to go out to pasture for a while. Palmer is the worry and second worry is that creep Roberts in Pauline’s orbit.

          • Grumpy says:

            Interesting point. Shall Herbert buck the usual trend of most Green voters’ preferences going to the Bolshies?

          • The Magpie says:

            Serious question: how pivotal is it that a party ‘direct’ preferences? In The ‘Pie’s experience, he and many others he knows take not a shred of notice of whatever preference call his first choice makes, and marks his own merry way through the ballot boxes to be ticked. Or is it that we have great majority of lazy sheeple, who can’t be bothered ton take any positive interest in the process but are quick to whinge when it’s all over.

          • Grumpy says:

            ‘Pie – a fair sheeples must do exactly that, because the flow of preferences almost always is roughly what the How to Votes suggest.

    • Alahazbin says:

      Don’t you mean LABOUR, Plucker?

  10. tenacious D says:

    I noticed the absence of our Mayor from the march today? She is usually (last 2 years that I know of) there at Strand Park to greet the Marchers.

    Is she even in town?

    • I’ll be plucked says:

      Hmmm, good pick up Tena; election around the corner, maybe started to be careful about who she puts her head in front of?……..Were any of the 3 ALP state ‘members’ about? They’d be as popular as shit on your shoes at the moment I think………

    • DEADTOOLE says:

      Did the police enforce local law 51 in relation to drinking and having alcohol in a public place at the union gathering after the March? Nearly every year there’s a bbq with alcohol provided. The mayor was up early at Anzac park for some dawn service

      • Dave of Kelso says:

        In the past I was a member of an organisation that applied for and got an alcohol permit for a function in a riverside park. Stated time and place and picnic tables and bbqs booked. Refundable security bond. Suggest the same in this case.

        • The Magpie says:

          Does this apply to The Strand?

        • DEADTOOLE says:

          That’s a fair answer, thanks Dave. Would like to know what the stipulation of a permit would intale in.this day and age. Was your involvement only recently or we talking a decade or more? Only reason I ask is if it’s allowed with a permit then that will mean every council including liberal based and Labour have no problem issuing them. I was wondering if its just a Labour council letting it through. Everyday at the drop in center in sth Townsville the police confiscate and destroy alcohol in public undrr local law 51. I have no problem if it’s above board but looking at how some of the union members act after a couple under there belt it seems certain people turn there head the other way. Thank you for letting us know Dave.

          • Dave of Kelso says:

            It was 10 to 12 years ago. Sports event of sorts on the river followed by bbq. Security bond was about $100 from memory and one of our members had to be present when a TCC rep inspected the area for cleanliness etc on the folk.owing Monday. We were issued with TCC notices to put on our tables and the bbq to advise these were booked for a private licenced function with start and finish times.

          • John says:

            If you cannot even pronounce Labor properly, please stop bloody typing the rest. What’s wrong with some of you people it’s not the UK.

          • The Magpie says:

            As wonderful and amazing as this blog is, it does not provide audio … so how wouldn you know how anybody pronounces anything?

          • No More Dredging says:

            But, but, ‘Pie, there is audio. Can’t you hear it? Sometimes I get images too, particularly when Cantankerous is on.

          • The Magpie says:

            Alfoil supplies OK?

  11. Chappy says:

    Not much work got done today….perhaps it should be Non – Labour Day.

  12. Frequent flyer says:

    Anyone who thinks Morrison is dumb should watch a replay of last night’s 7.30 Report.
    Sales did her best to trip ScoMo up but he came up with an intelligent answer every time, despite her annoying habit of asking a question then talking over the interviewee while he is giving an answer.
    Sales is an attack dog who normally leaves her victims in tatters, but not last night.
    ScoMo showed an amazing ability to recall facts and statistics on a wide range of subjects.
    Sco Mo 10 – Sales 0.
    And before all you rusted on Labor supporters call a Liberal voter, I’ve already voted and NOT for Liberal or Labor.

    • The Magpie says:

      Oh, oh, FF, you’ve given yourself away a tad there, with a clear bias against Sales if not the ABC.

      A good journalist/interviewer, and only those bowing to their own biases would claim Sales is otherwise, does interrogate toughly but the aim is not to ‘trip up’ anyone, it is to get STRAIGHT ANSWERS’. Fair enough to call her an attack dog, because that just simply means she doesn’t flinch from asking the hard and sometimes confronting questions of ANYBODY (that includes The Short Un). ‘Trip up’ is what you do when you’re interviewing, say, a murder suspect or Malcolm Roberts,(Roberts really isn’t a politician, he’s a Martian infiltrator) but when you’re interviewing politicians, you are aiming to get one simple thing – a straight answer. Even someone whose shoe size is bigger than their IQ know that not all Polly Waffle comes in a wrapper, and The ‘Pie for one admires Sales for what you call ‘talking over'; for pulling up those who insult and test the patience of viewers by deliberately giving meandering non-answers (hi, Mike Capt Snooze Reynolds) and treating all interviews as a free party ad. Sales will have none of it, but does it politely and firmly … and you’ll note no matter what she thinks of how an interview went she NEVER makes a personal aside afterwards, like so many others – including ABC reporter colleagues, especially Andrew Probyn. There are those who suggest The ‘Pie has ‘a thing’ for Sales … of course he does, and it’s the same thing he has for any of the dwindling number of real journalists in our media … admiration and nostalgia for a past era in journalism..

      As for having any other sense of having a ‘thing’ for her, what a limp ambition that would be.

      • Kenny Kennett says:

        …and on the other hand there’s Q&A!!

        • The Magpie says:

          Don’t start The ‘Pie!! A program The ‘Pie simply cannot watch on health grounds … blood pressure always skyrockets at this staged stupidity, and Tuesday’s are almost as bad, as the media treat the contents of the night before are serious and issue changing. It’s bollocks start to finish.

          • Insider says:

            Actually, Shorten was excellent on Q&A last night and handled the questions from the self-interested franking retirees well.

          • The Magpie says:

            Didn’t watch it all, but happy to accept what you say, because it was a single person rather than a gaggle of opposing clacking geese chosen to evince that exact effect. As previously judged, complete and utter bollocks that achieves absolutely nothing.

          • Jatzcrackers says:

            They reckon high blood pressure doesn’t help your putting…or in some cases, causes it !

      • Frequent flyer says:

        A quality journalist listens to answers. Last night ScoMo at times barely got two words out and she was talking over him. In any case my point was that ScoMo came out of the interview completely unscathed, unlike others who have been trampled on, in some cases with good reason. ScoMo’s final answer was pure gold.
        Guess we will agree to disagree.

        • The Magpie says:

          A quality journalist does not allow an interview to be hijacked by platitude spouting, what-about-them-ism evasion, either, although you insist that they are ‘trampled on’. And that an interviewer, Sales or anyone else, does the job of keeping the subject on track says a great deal for our system that allows fair interrogation of even the highest office in the land. Love to see them try that with Trump, or if you like blood sports, Putin or any of the tin-pot middle east or Asian dictators (Duarte in the Philippines comes to mind … that would really be a brief interview, ending with a bang.)

          The ‘Pie has no argument with your assessment of Morrison’s performance and the ultimate outcome, but because he did a good job of answering does not mean Sales did a bad job of

      • Critical says:

        Let’s invite Leah Sales to interview Mullet about the dubious going on’s within TTC that no one can ever get a straight answer about. Most of Townsville would be watching that interview.

  13. Achilles says:

    With Elections coming up soon… Remember the following, whoever you vote for!

    Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other.
    ~Oscar Am ringer, “the Mark Twain of American Socialism.”

    I offered my opponents a deal:
    “if they stop telling lies about me,
    I will stop telling the truth about them”.
    ~Adlai Stevenson, campaign speech, 1952..

    A politician is a fellow who will lay down your life for his country.
    ~Texas Guinan. 19th century American businessman

    I have come to the conclusion that politics is too serious a matter to be left to the politicians.
    ~Charles de Gaulle, French general & politician

    Instead of giving a politician the keys to the city, It might be better to change the locks.
    ~Doug Larson (English middle-distance runner who won gold medals at the 1924 Olympic Games in Paris, 1902-1981)

    We hang petty thieves and appoint the bigger thieves to public office.
    ~Aesop, Greek slave & fable author

    Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being Governed by those who are dumber.
    ~Plato, ancient Greek Philosopher

    Politicians are the same all over.
    They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.
    ~Nikita Khrushchev, Russian Soviet politician

    When I was a boy I was told that anybody could become PM; I’m beginning to believe it.
    ~Quoted in ‘Clarence Darrow for the Defense’ by Irving Stone.

    Politicians are people who, when they see light at the end of the tunnel,
    Go out and buy some more tunnel.
    ~John Quinton, American actor/writer

    What happens if a politician drowns in a river?
    That is pollution.
    What happens if all of them drown?
    That is a solution …..!!!

  14. The Magpie says:

    HAHAHAHAHA … ya gotta laugh at audacity. But whose audacity in this case.

    Oldest trick in the book … infiltrate the opposition and then throw an egg at your own candidate. Votes follow outrage.

    And if that’s not the case, the thrower should be sectioned into a mental health unit … an insane tactic to win your point.

    • Baby Steps says:

      Abbott was headbutted in the street

      Bolt was set upon by left wing lunatics

      Anning was “egged” in a lone wolf attack and egg boy praised by the lunatic media and fellow travellers.

      Scomo was egged , strangely it bounced off his head ( read – boiled) , everyone laughed. Consider this – what if scomo had been blinded by that funny egg? No doubt we would all be laughing? Some people would be over the moon if scomo was blinded? – its the mindset of the left wing.

      This is a trend , expect another leftwing lone wolf attack on candidates and politicians and everyone will laugh – right? The education system has been a sausage factory for mindless idiots for decades swallowing psychobabble and now we are seeing the inevitable result. What comes out feeds into the government , army and intelligence services and then we wonder why everything is falling apart.

      As a case in point I was talking to a leftwinger recently who thought it was a great idea to physically attack politicians and anyone that didn’t agree with her opinions ( as it was good, proper and a necessary part of politics). Its amazing what you learn when you ask people what they think. Whatever the “labor” party used to be, its morphed into a very different and dangerous creature.

      As for right of centre its a sorry sight, no planning, no organisation and people such as Turnbull handing over 400 million dollars to some twaddle involved with the barrier reef. The centre of right have no concrete ideological framework anymore , they get into office when people have grown tired of the damage created by the labor party.

      The liberal party should take all assailants of their candidates and politicians to some civil court to help ward off the attacks in lieu of the state prosecution being unable to hand out suitable sentences for criminal activity. The outcome of those court cases needs to known via social media.

  15. Mumbler says:

    Hello Magpie

    I am trying to work out why it is that Leeann Eatts has been charged with manslaughter. There are many ways that children die due to inadequate supervision. For example, parents who don’t supervise their children near their swimming pools, parents who leave children locked in cars, parents who don’t allow their children to get appropriate medical treatment, parents who do not adequately supervise their children driving quad bikes. I can find very little evidence that manslaughter charges have been pursued against parents involved in cases such as these. Even manslaughter charges involving violence against children that results in death are inadequate. I am even more bewildered why this woman has been refused bail. David Bradford killed Teresa Bradford while he was on bail, James Gargasoulas was on bail when he drove into people on Bourke Street in Melbourne. Greg Anderson was on bail when he bashed Rosie Batty’s son, Luke. I am unable to equate Leeann Eatts with any of these people who were on bail. All of which leads me to ask – is racism involved, or have things been brought out in court that have not been published?

    • The Magpie says:

      See where you’re coming from, and would like answers to those questions, too, but they will only be answered when the matter comes to court. We’ll just have to wait to see what justification the prosecution brings to both the charge and the refusal of bail.

    • Alex DeLarge says:

      Mumbles, maybe some form of social/legal engineering is being attempted. The law is an ever-evolving creature.

    • The Magpie says:

      Just seen the news, and the prosecutor apparently quoted ythe woman saying something like ‘she drove better when she was drunk’ and ‘got away with a lot because of the kids’. Damning stuff maybe, BUT WHY WAS HER PHONE WIRE-TAPPED AFTER THE EVENT? If it was before the event (she was involved in drugs, apparently), are authorities partly culpable for the fate of those two kids, by not acting when they surely heard something that may have put the kids in danger (like having a mother involved in drugs and alcohol as their primary carer). The wire tap prior to the incident makes sense, since she was involved in drugs.

      This is going to get a lot more interesting if an ‘ends justifies the means’ scenario unfolds.

    • Mad Max says:

      It costs money to keep people in gaol.

  16. Kingswood says:

    Sorry, I’m losing it. Yet another fu#*ing article in yesterday’s bully telling us we can save $ changing power providers. Do any of these di%#heads read their own paper? Seriously this is the 5th in a year and with the amount of mistakes in the last month let alone year from scam caravans to getting birthdays wrong to repeat Bible quotes (shoot me, I read and value them) I’m getting over it. Seriously TB, get your fu%#ing act together and get a real editor/checker for fu$# sake….

    • Dave of Kelso says:

      Settle Kingswood. You will blow a head gasket, and at your age new originals will be hard to find.

      • Kingswood says:

        Good advice. But the checking aspect has really gone down the toilet the last 18 months, it’s beyond sloppy. If it wasnt for the crime pages and cartoons I’d have given up on them by now. The Sat extra section is mostly a yawn now too. It used to be Saturday routine to have my daughter on my lap reading the dog/cat pages, they got rid of that as well as halved the Tues school section. Yes, people have noticed…

        • Dave of Kelso says:

          In a past life, in the 1980s and beyond I worked with folks that would come up to Tsv for 2 to 3 years then return down South.

          On reading the TB at morning tea or lunch they frequently commented at the juvenile shallow journalism forming the early opinion that Tsv was a hillbilly hick town with little to offer.

          This impression given by the TB was annoying and an embarrassment. For better or worse Tsv is my home. The TB has been a piss-poor paper for many years.

          After a while most of the Southerners came to appreciate the place but few ever stayed.

        • Scotty says:

          Pickle me grandmother! You’re not taking the Kingswood, I’ve just gladwrapped the aerial.

          Hmm, perhaps I’ll leave Neville alone….

  17. Mike Douglas says:

    Labor’s ability to Govern . How many State prisons in lockdown ? , Brisbane Public hospitals code 3 meaning they have so many ambulances ramped they can’t take any more patients . Then Cathy Otoole thinks a splash park( like the strand) is required on Palm Island when thousands have issues accessing drinking water . It’s not about the $ it’s the bloated ineffective State Govt who have to use consultants to make recommendations .

  18. Achilles says:

    Maybe the Rugby Australia board should be renamed The Sanhedrin? Bloody mob of self righteous hypocritical arseholes.

  19. The Magpie says:

    The Archibald Prize.

    Bit of a diversion from our usual fare, but the Archibald Prize has always been of great interest. When living down south, visiting the exhibition was always an enjoyable and sometimes confronting surprise … photographs of entries can never have the impact and power of the real painting.

    The Guardian has published a gallery of entries from which the winner will be announced in a couple of days.


    Having looked through them, there is one stand-out in among the usual David Wenhams, Leigh Sales and latest darlings of the metropolitan chatterati et al that jumps out at you, and if The ‘Pie were a judge, it would win easily.

    It is titled ‘Tjuparntarri – women’s business’. The fierce defiant despair of the eyes, the determined set of the mouth and chin and the anxiety displayed on the face as a whole is truly arresting, and to The ‘Pie, it speaks of the strong role female elders command in traditional aboriginal culture. It’s impact is heightened by being shown among the more arty clever-dick entries.
    Winner or not, a powerful image.

    • I’ll be plucked says:

      Pie, I thought the packing room choice was pretty good, but the overall winner announced today was a big disappointment, when lined up against the one you posted above. The judging team must have had grit in their eyes!

        • No More Dredging says:

          I appreciate that the above painting is likely a photo-real impression of the subject and very nicely done at that but the Archibald prize demands a bit more than that. For what it’s worth the winning artist said of his subject ““In my portrait of Lee, I have kept the colour minimal to avoid any visual noise. The challenge for me was to capture the energy of Lindy – the emotional over and above the physical.”

  20. Mike Douglas says:

    Politics, Cathy Otoole slanders Clive Palmer outside of Parliamentary Privilege and is in a $500,000 legal claim and says she won’t bow down to Clive Palmer but she has preferenced Clives candidate ahead of the Liberal candidate . Aaron Harper says he doesn’t rate any of the companies that signed the Adani pledge . You wonder why people are drifting to the minor parties .

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      Yes, and finally old snoozing McDonald has woken up and found the election is next week and thought to himself, wholly shit I better do something, how about a North Australia Party, too late old mate, you should have started this a year ago when you found out you were shafted to number 4 on the LNP senate ticket. At least you didn’t sellout and jump to KAP as a senate candidate for the last year, which would have been tempting and given you some chance to stay, and credit for that.

      • No More Dredging says:

        Cantankerous, ” . . . which would have been tempting and given you some chance to stay, and credit for that” – what the bloody hell purpose would be served by having Ian Macdonald hang around for another useless term in the Senate? That’s the sort of sentimental (or just mental) crap that will likely see Palmer elected as a senator for Queensland.

  21. Dave of Kelso says:

    Having read the article above I asked the local CBA and NAB what happens to my money when the RBA cuts interest rates to .75%, 0%, or a minus rate?

    CBA took my question to send up the chain a promised an email response.
    NAB would not entertain the question and referred me to their web site.

    I recommend all to ask their bank about negative interest.

    • Harvey Range says:

      Buy shares or some investment i suppose. The average joe in Townsville has no great deal of money to worry about what the bank may do with their money.

    • Jatzcrackers says:

      I reckon my bank is in real trouble ! I was knocked back at the ATM the other day with a message ‘insufficient funds’ !! Makes you wonder what the banks do with all the money we give them !

  22. Charlie Wulguru says:

    Did anyone else get an Astonisher today without any ‘Deaths and Funeral notices’ page in it?

  23. upagumtreeperson says:

    Magpie I thought I caught the last part of Seven TV news Friday night May 3rd that the Townsville Access Van had cease to operate. Have you heard this? The news item was so fast I missed the details. Perhaps bureaucracy has caught up with the group who have faithfully provided nourishment to citizens for many years.

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