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The Magpie

Sunday, July 14th, 2019   |   118 comments

That $350,000 Deal With Jamie Durie: The Simmering Rage Grows Across The City

This complete waste of ratepayers money, engineered as a ‘jobs for the boys’ by blow-in council contractors Pure Projects, is shaping up as the single most damaging move by Mayor Mullet – and that’s really saying something, given her track record.

Legally blind: what the hell is up with rogue Judge Salvatore ‘Javid’ Vasta? He has been reined in and slammed in the bluntest of terms by his peers for yet another disgraceful display on the bench … and this can only be good news for James Cook University in its campaign to be rid of Peter Ridd.

The term legally blind can also be applied to local social media mega-conspiracy theorist Peter Newey … The Magpie has some friendly advice for the likeable old goof who barks at clouds on his Townsville Residents and Ratepayers Association’s website.

Will Bazza ‘The Legal Foghorn’ Taylor follow the example of his missus, and finally pack his business bags and quit Townsville? There’s a hint.

And is Jenny Hill fearing/hoping for a meeting with President Trump? Evidence (?) suggest she could be.

The ‘Pie nominates his best design for a building in this city … and he’s serious for a change.

How to go from idiot to genius in five seconds and 10 metres – a video.

But first …

So It Seems The Jamie Durie Rort Is Back On The Agenda

Jenny Hill reminds The Magpie of the famously inept , bumbling Army general, prone to disastrous decisions, of whom it was said his men would follow him anywhere … just out of curiosity.

Almost daily, we await to see what latest scheme she has managed to come up with, but our curiosity is tempered with trepidation, because it will be the poor mug ratepayers taking the hits on the General Jenny’s front line.  This library of lunacy includes the Adani airstrip fiasco, which saw her make an embarrassing climb down under and for which she is still under investigation, her call for a Qantas boycott that made her and the city the laughing stock of the nation, and we are yet to hear about her role in the flooding of 200 extra homes in the January monsoon, an action claimed at the time to be ‘for the greater good’.

But of these and many other misguided attempts to bolster her re-election chances, none is more likely to damage her already slim prospects than the Jamie Durie out-and-out rort. If all the reactions The ‘Pie has received and observed since it was announced as on again, nothing matches the howls of outrage Jamie Durie’s $350,000 water-saving campaign contract has evoked. From a nasty whispering campaign about possible personal emotional motivations regarding Mr Durie (which are total rubbish) to towering indignation at this blatant waste of money to bolster her standing in the polls, the contract could be one of the most pivotal mistakes in this litany of errors. It is patronising, insulting and above all unnecessary, the same outcome easily achieved for a tenth of the contact cost (which has tens of thousands of extras on top of it anyway).

One person she ain’t fooling one bit is Bentley.

Drurie advice copy small

Durie, who has been deep in legal and financial troubles of late, almost certainly got the featherbedded gig through his historic connections with the white shoe specialists of the council-appointed contractors, Pure Projects. When The ‘Pie heard during the week that Durie was back in the saddle, it reminded the old bird of that famous Disney character Scrooge McDuck, and his famous swan dives into his gold filled vault.


Mayor Mullet’s only forlorn hope of re-election is the current absence of a viable challenger … viable being practically anybody with a pulse who finished high school. That will surely change soon. Won’t it? Please?

Will Judge Sal ‘Javid’ Vasta Follow In His Father’s Footsteps And Get Chucked Off The Bench?

Memo Judge Vasta

noblesse oblige| nōˈbles əˈblēZH | the inferred responsibility of privileged people to act with generosity and nobility toward those less privileged.

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Judge Sal ‘Javid’ Vasta

It’s looking like an increasing possibility. And on the evidence so far, not a moment too soon. When his fellow judges use the word ‘egregious’ to describe his behaviour, that’s pressing the down button on the judicial lift. Sal got his nickname for endlessly talking about ‘me and dad’ as they travelled around the state.

The legal profession is famous for protecting its own in the general run of things, and bad decisions by judges are often reversed by the Appeals Court but rarely with any overt repercussions for the erring judge. But that may well not be the case in the matter of Sal Vasta. Included in many of the 70 successful appeals against his decisions, behaviour and sentencing are phrases rarely heard in the rarified language of the Appeals court. Phrases like ‘sarcastic, disparaging and dismissive’, ‘devoid of procedural fairness’ and ‘argumentative and demeaning behaviour’ – and these all in separate matters, which points to a disturbing pattern … and Vasta’s mindset.

Even the often cheeky legal magazine Justinian, sticks in the boot, describing one matter as ‘another disastrous performance’, and handling of another that ‘Judge Vasta made a pigs ear out of an application.’ But now, silly Sal may find himself on the other side of the bench.

Leigh Jorgensen

Wrongly jailed – Cairns tour operator Leigh Jorgensen

CAIRNS tour operator Leigh Jorgensen plans to file a multimillion-dollar damages claim after he was jailed for 12 months and fined $85,000 in what the Appeals Court deemed a “miscarriage of justice” by Judge Vasta. Jorgensen isn’t off the hook on charges of underpaying staff and contempt of court, a retrial has been ordered, but he gets back his $250,000 in legal costs, but will never get back the year of his life wrongly taken away a pompous prick on the bench. Even if he wins the next round, he’s still a loser.

All this should bolster the confidence of the legal folk representing James Cook University, who have argued constantly that Vasta’s ruling on their dismissal of climate denier Peter Ridd over breaches of the university’s Rules of Conduct was not justified or sustainable. The university says it will not make a decision on any appeal until after Vasta hands down his decisions and monetary penalty in the next few days. Maybe it will probably come down to what is cheaper … an appeal against the Vasta decision, or the damages awarded to Ridd and any other condition imposed by Federal Circuit Court Judge Vasta, whom Justinian describes as a Federal Circus Judge Vasta.

For the record, and by no means complete.

CONTROVERSIAL RULINGS (from the Courier Mail)

August 10, 2018: Judge Vasta’s decision in a property settlement case was set aside on appeal and costs paid to the Commonwealth, with a new hearing ordered by a judge “other than Judge Vasta”.

February 12, 2019: A decision by Judge Vasta was partially overturned after he was found to have restrained a father from making further applications to the court without the power to do so.

February 15, 2019: The Full Court of the Family Court found on appeal that Judge Vasta’s process was “so devoid of procedural fairness” it was “an affront to justice”. In that case, he sentenced a father to 12 months’ prison for contempt, telling him “I hope you brought your toothbrush”.

February 21, 2019: The Full Court of the Family Court overturned a decision by Judge Vasta in which he ordered a same-sex couple to have their child baptised.

February 21, 2019: An appeal found Judge Vasta denied natural justice to a father in a parenting case, endorsing the man’s complaints that the judge displayed “argumentative and demeaning behaviour” towards him.

July 8, 2019: Judge Vasta was found to have denied a man a fair trial when he jailed him for 12 months for contempt of court. He was found to have put unfair questions to the man and used a “sarcastic, disparaging and dismissive” tone.

Friendly Advice For Peter Newey

Peter Newey

Peter Newey

The other legal question widely covered during the week was the ruling that news organisations are responsible for libellous comments made on their Facebook platforms. Given the rules and mechanism imposed by Facebook which makes comments difficult if not impossible to police, that seriously stupid decree will no doubt be ditched pretty quickly, no matter how dearly fascist elements in our federal government would like it to remain. However, it may prompt Facebook and the like to alter their settings to allow proper oversight of actionable comments.

But when someone operates a much smaller website, like say, The Magpie, where comments are all curated, it will always, and always has been, the operator’s responsibility for what is said – as The Magpie’s on-going legal pleasantries with Barry Taylor and his financial patsy Rabeah Krayem attest.

So The ‘Pie was put in mind of this when reading some material regarding the new megaresort and equestrian centre planned by Asian investors at Toolakea Beach. And more specifically, Peter Newey’s grandly titled one-man band Facebook site, the wonderfully misnamed Townsville Residents and Ratepayers Association (current membership probably about, oh, say, four people – and one would bet they don’t know that they too could be financially liable for any libel Newey commits).

Peter is a shambling, likeable old goof in most instances, but is forever alarming himself with recurring panic attacks about dastardly foreigners in cahoots with corrupt council officials and other evil locals to … to … well, we’re not sure, he doesn’t actually say in understandable terms … and he sure as hell regards any proof as an optional extra he doesn’t need.

He has had many a sleepless night and many an untouched meal he is so determined to be Townsville’s Paul Revere about the yellow hordes about to descend on our beloved northern beaches.

Unfortunately for him, Pete has been bolstered in his mistaken self-belief when he enjoyed his 15 minutes of fame by organising and dropping in a petition opposing the mayor’s Adani airstrip deal (for which she is still under investigation). And he also found a few bibs and bobs of evidence of strange behaviour in the local fire brigade and the demolition of some beach huts. But our Pete has managed to weave all this into an elaborate conspiracy involving a wonderful cast of characters from the council, local real estate pests and dastardly Asian mega-billionaires and their lackeys with (unspecified) agendas.

The Magpie himself has carefully touched on some of these areas, but for Pete, it’s full throttle and damn the torpedos – or more correctly, damn the torts. Until now, anyone offended or defamed by this fantasising have dismissed the TRRA as a bit of a laugh from a harmless old duffer. Until now.

It has come to the attention of the Magpie through reliable contacts that this mega resort project is being carefully monitored by Asian groups, looking at the required processes for such investments … and also the possible racist attitudes it may attract. And Mr Newey has been apparently noted in this light. If any influential groups mistakenly put any credence what could be seen as an influential xenophobic racist stirring of the pot, Mr Newey could be jeopardising jobs and prosperity for Townsville.

But if the stakes are raised high enough, Pete, you should realise being a likeable old goof who’s good for a laugh and a benevolent shake of the head will not save you from a devastating action. Such an action may or may not involve hate laws, as well as civil actions which could claim your savings, your home, your car and give you real reason to have sleepless nights and miss meals.

Think about it, mate.

And just for the record Pete, if you wonder why The ‘Pie hasn’t replied to your occasional disparaging remarks about himself, it is because the Magpie has a firm rule: when a donkey brays at him, he doesn’t bray back.

Is Bazza Deserting Us?

Big Bazza Taylor

Big Bazza Taylor

One wonders if the delights of Noosa have finally seduced Bazza The Legal Foghorn Taylor, is about to close down or flog off his Townsville branch of Enema Legal. The question arose when The ‘Pie noticed that this knick-knack business catering to the well heeled just a few steps along from the Foghorn’s office has called it quits.

Screen Shot 2019-07-14 at 1.12.14 am

Significant because it was the business plaything of Mrs Bazza . Just wondering if this is the start of a Taylor family move to Noosa? Might as well be, they spend most of their time there anyway.

Dynasty’s Destiny

Talked to Bridget Wong during the week, wondering when The ‘Pie’s favourite noshery will be back up and running after an unscheduled flambéing of the kitchen last week. Bridget tells us that local tradie Mick Downer is beavering away and the grand old lady of Townsville’s dining scene fully restored and will be welcoming back customers again in three to four weeks.

Will Iditor Jenna Cairney Have To Shortly Name Herself In The Paper’s Daily List Of Court Appearances?

Staying witrh matters legal, there was a doozy of an error by the Townsville Bulletin during the week; even for this mistake prone outfit, this was a corker, which was a clear contempt of court on behalf of the paper.

It was spotted by a sharp-eyed Nest reader and reported in comments.

The Wulguru Wonder 

 July 11, 2019 at 7:40 pm  (Edit)

Is this a major Astonisher stuff up in their online edition?

Court report headline names a women sentenced for a fight with a family member, but the first paragraph of the actual story says she can’t be named to protect the identify of the family member. Isn’t this contempt of a court order?

The Magpie 

July 11, 2019 at 8:39 pm  (Edit)

It certainly is contempt, ands Magistrate Steven Mosch should demand the editor front the court to apologise … at the very least.

Completely amateur effort, and The ‘Pie notes that the story has been run on the Cairns Post website unchanged.

Doesn’t anyone in News Ltd give a fuck about anything any more? Disgraceful as well as illegal.

The Magpie

July 11, 2019 at 11:39 pm  (Edit)

And of course, they don’t read the Magpie down at the paper do they? Less than 20 minutes after all this was posted here and on Twitter, they changed the name in the headline to ‘sister of’.

And how’s this for outright stupidity? Bomb hoaxes are strictly off limits and this goes against the guidelines of every news organisation The ‘Pie has worked for – there has always had to be very special reasons of public safety to publish bomb hoaxes, before or after the fact.

Screen Shot 2019-07-11 at 8.18.42 pm

Thanks, Jenna, now every juvenile fuckwit and disaffected loser in the neighbourhood will be ringing in with hoaxes just to watch the fun. And of course, with the new emphasis on what a tough job coppers have (shit, really, we all thought bit was holidays dealing with life’s sleazy side) the wallopers will be happy to rabbit on about how good they were at finding … nothing.

Do you ever really think about things, Jenna?

What A Startling … And Pleasant Surprise

That’s something The Magpie rarely says about buildings, but he stumbled across a structure hidden away from through traffic that is startling when first encountered and when contemplated, has to be admired for it’s ingenuity and cleverness. This is how it reveals itself as you drive in from the Strand to the marina area.

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This is Maidment’s Sales Office, replete with top floor outlook platform for a good idea of the view one will get from the company’s new mega development next to the marina. A great example how the mundane old sales office can actually be attractive in itself.

If it’s moved elsewhere when construction starts, The ‘Pie will be more than happy to housesit.

Occasionally Peeping Out From Behind The Couch?

Qld footy watch

Gallic Galah

The rotters!!!


We have a winner for the Magpie’s occasional award, the Rectal Auto-Examination Probe.

The PC Police can be pretty precious most of the time, but when it comes to being really, really precious, the world of French gastronomy is the rare earth metals of Wanker World. And it is sometimes hard to pick a winner from this dazzling array of constant onanism, but chef Marc Veyrat takes the gateau this week.

French chef Marc Veyrat

Monsieur Veyrat is well known in France as a specialist in molecular gastronomy, for which he charges planet-size prices.

Any chef of note with ‘rat’ in his name is a brave fellow, and here ‘ratbag’ would seem appropriate. This week, after Michelin knocked a star of his three-starred hasty tasty, he demanded Michelin remove his restaurant from their annual guide. When they refused, on the obvious grounds that they served the readers not the restaurants, crumbs, did that ever make his broth boileth over!

That refusal resulted in Veyrat having a three star tanty, which included the Cup-winning quote: “They dared to say that we put cheddar in our souffle of reblochon, beaufort and tomme! They have insulted our region; my employees were furious.”

There is a small problem – Michelin never said any such thing. But Veyrat isn’t alone in the incomprehensible gushing snowflake world of those who have lived their lives among the food fairies of France. It’s an affliction from which Michelin itself is not exempt. The Guardian article pointed out the restaurant review in question was in fact positive overall: ‘(For all that) the restaurant is, Michelin says, “worth the detour”, with an “exceptional cuisine” – the best example of which is the “balade” (stroll) in the woods “where flavours burst, escape, between herby notes, sap of fir and mushrooms”. The only downside, the write-up notes, is the price.’

And Veyrat’s website offers a clue as to what mug punters can expect … if they can work out what the hell it is they’re getting.

“… a veritable pastoral and mineral symphony in which nature’s bounty is displayed in each and every dish The “starry celebration” menu, priced at €395 ($635AUD), offers dishes including “illusion” of caviar with trout eggs and “king prawns cooked in spruce bark”.

‘Illusion of caviar’? At that price, The ‘Pie would want the bloody sturgeon milked at the table.

One imagines the mentioned ‘celebration’ is in the kitchen with bubbly and thigh slapping laughter.

Today Adani – Tomorrow Trump? Is Mayor Mullet Rehearsing For The Ultimate Date?

Can’t help laughing at this.


But then, it suddenly clicked. Not satisfied with Indian billionaire to bat her eyelids at, Mayor Mullet is aiming at the top. She has been seen on several occasions secretly rehearsing for the hoped for meeting with the world’s leading feline fancier.

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But There Is Little But Bitter Laughter … and Sometimes None At All When Reality Bites

These bits and pieces speak for themselves, as the American mood sours even further.

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So while Donald Trump continues his Napoleonic campaign to become the first Emperor of America, Empress Melania waves a dismissive hand at news that caged immigrant kids don’t have any bread airily suggests ‘Let them eat jellied donuts.’  The alarm bells are now starting ring more loudly.

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And the Democrats are doing their best to help the Trumps divine right of kings. The week in Trumpsylvania.

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If he does win a second term, it might be better if he started lessons on the lyre, because he will more closely emulate Nero’s famous musical indifference to his country and the world. And of course lyre  would be the natural choice for Trump.

How To Go From Idiot To Genius In 5 Seconds And 10 metres.

He looks like a goof, but a goof that knows what he’s doing – there’s a method in his madness, as ill-advised as it may be.

Finally, From The ‘You Wish’ Dept

Viagra bus


So there’s another five minutes you’ll never get back, but have your own say in comments, they are getting more interesting by the day. And if this bumper issue has managed to inspire in you thoughts that a Walkley is imminent, The ‘Pie is just happy to settle for a donation to keep Nest costs under control, 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. Steve, Belgian Gardens says:

    Perhaps a weakness in the Strand Emporium’s business model was not being located on the Strand?

  2. Cantankerous but happy says:

    How is that junk journalism in the Astonisher “ the top 100 earners” talk about lazy, nothing but guesswork, speculation and some leftovers from a courier mail article a while ago, which didn’t hold anymore substance than this lot of garbage, and to list Clive Palmer or Chris Morris as Townsville residents is really reaching for shit, the standards never improve.

  3. Achilles says:

    If any influential groups mistakenly put any credence what could be seen as an influential xenophobic racist stirring of the pot, Mr Newey could be jeopardising jobs and prosperity for Townsville.

    Is Xenophobia an irrational fear of Japanese riddles?

  4. Frequent flyer says:

    So Bazza is rumoured to be leaving town.

  5. Mike Douglas says:

    Social media has delivered some great platforms for friends and families to connect and keep in touch but when you have individuals under the guise of supposedly being the voice of over 100,000 Townsville households then drive their personal agendas it’s time for more disclosure or in fact remove Townsville from their name . Posts often say “ we at “ but who are the we ? Some posts have had sponsored but what’s the agenda . As a resident and ratepayer I certainly don’t support the xenophobic views and conspiracy theories or naming and shaming certain individuals . Their excuse is that they are providing a community service . When posting WFTAG,s recent 3 page comments on stage 2 of the pipeline the “so called association “stated they believed water increases would be 10 % to ratepayers . As Linda Ashton reads the Magpie and was actually at the pipeline meeting i hope Linda could provide comment as T.C.C. States” no increase to ratepayers “.

    • The Magpie says:

      As far as the website is concerned, TRRA is in fact just Peter Newey, and although he may claim there are other members (this association started out as a Labor stalking horse, but in-fighting by the likes of Paul Jacob saw the majority dropped off over the years), Peter appears to be the sole author of the posts. And while he’s good for a guffaw now and then, Peter is highly irresponsible if for nom other reason allowing his wilful ignorance and/or disregard for the law put others in jeopardy. Anyone who can be proved to be a member of the TRRA could almost certainly be joined in any defamation action. And senility is no defence … although Menzies famous line is applicable to Peter’s posts: ‘The tour of the honourable gentleman’s mind would’ve been far more enlightening had it not be conducted in the gathering darkness.’

      • Country Lawyer says:

        There’s been a recent case in NSW that has caused all forms of media platforms to take a second look at comments they allow to be posted on their sites, because they can be held liable for the comments. By extension groups or individuals that have sits that link to defamatory material or allow defamatory material to be posted on their sites or have links posted are also at risk. Site administrators should take note. Members of associations or groups that run sites should take note. When in doubt limit the risk. It’s all fun and games until someone loses a house.

        • The Magpie says:

          Yup, thanks for confirming what The ‘Pie has been saying. And believe him when he tells you, he has personal experience – still is having, in fact – of what happens when someone with a hidden vindictive agenda wishes to legally bully and threaten with highly contentious claims to injury to reputation. Fortunately for The ‘Pie, the bully has fallen foul of his own plan courtesy of a very ethically different lawyer. All will be told in the wash-up.

      • tenacious D says:

        Hi Pie

        I follow the TRRA on Facebook, as you say for the occasional giggle, surely I could not be liable in that sense of guilt by association in a defamation suite?, he boasted in his piece this morning about how many followers he has on FB, but you could not claim them as members? Asking if you had lost your mind and that your association with lawyer is somehow influencing this blog, let alone you was my laugh for the day.

        I never get past the CAPS lock intro’s it tends be dribble after that.

        • The Magpie says:

          It would seem at the moment liability for libel would rest with the owner of the site, in which case, if it’s the TRRA, it will then depend on who else other than Peter in the TRRA has the power to delete or reject comments with administrative access to the site. Those people could certainly be joined, and share liability if they lose in any action. Any policy to publish anything and everything anyone says in the name of free speech is not only dopey, it’s dangerous, irresponsible and legally ignorant.

  6. Trevor Elson Political Thoughts says:

    I personally cant see the point in having sites, blogs and awareness campaigns by individuals or organisations if those forums are not willing to put the facts and truth out there, if the research is carried out thoroughly with the details published there is no cause for any defamation to be bought against the publisher. Freedom of speech is still allowed at this stage in Australia so all forms of awareness media need to keep the facts coming, if we take the time to read what is published by all forms of media it can at least give us a more educated opinion.

    • The Magpie says:

      In principle, couldn’t agree more, Trevor, The ‘Pie’s point exactly. Can you point to The ‘Pie and his readers to a site where this happens?

      And by the way, as a budding politician, a couple of points should your council ambitions move to reality – councillors are not covered by protection laws as operate in state and federal legislatures, so your sweepingly incorrect statement that suggests there are no constraints on freedom of speech indicates you’d better have a chat with your solicitor before ever going down that path. And you pre-judge the judge, so as to speak, with the patently absurd suggestion about no cause for defamation if one speaks the truth … because until an assertion is tested in a court of law and accepted by a jury can it be accepted as the (sometimes) justifiable truth … and often, even that is not enough. But many folks on the social media (including the odd President here and there) simply make up their own version of the truth by drawing unsupportable conclusions from shreds of factual evidence.

  7. The Magpie says:

    Memo Peter Newey:

    Hi Pete,
    Thanks for offering your long (1100 words) self-congratulatory essay on your worth and my lack of same. You may rest assured I will not be editing your comment, it has been wholly deleted, as I generously will allow you and your site the sole honour of basking in the undiluted glory of your glowing self-assessment.


    Your old pal, The Magpie

    • Radiohead says:

      Shame we can’t all see what he sent you magpie but I havnt got the patients to go past 100 words little on 1100. Would have been a good laugh perhaps. I did follow peter alot around the time phil baty was chasing the mayor but so much that rubbish on there sometimes and not relevant to what alot of people want to know about. He should take some blame for helping the current lot of team hill get in with Jacob being the chief destroyer of some of the last council. ( ghost councilor in the paper) it’s a shame all his efforts are not targeted properly, maybe a rethink of the way he investergates would be a start. Sorry about the cat up my arse comment last week, alahazbin got me on a bad day after some bad Bets on cricket and league. Sticking to greyhounds now.

      • The Magpie says:

        Your comments were all part of fun of the fair. But you can see Pete’s rambling and wholly fanciful diatribe on his website, he promised to publish it there. Poor old Peter has a serious case of RDS -Relevance Deprivation Syndrome.

      • Dave of Kelso says:

        Your cat comment and trip to Perth (was it Perth?) was one of the funniest my wife and I have enjoyed in a while. Wonderfully spontaneous.

  8. Arthur Itis says:

    Newey’s approach really is akin to one of the definitions of a cyberbully. This scattergun technique to issues leaves a trail of innocent reputations in its wake in the hope of flushing out his intended prey. His treatment of, and subsequent resurrection of Gavin Jepson, while failing to correct his original posts, is a case in point (who’s the real goon?). This puerile approach trading as research including failure to correctly name property owners, failure to read maps correctly, misinterpreting facts (basic research 101) over time is increasingly consigning his precious TRRA to a cloud cuckoo land inhabited by modern day Don Quixotes suffering from Relevance Deprevation Syndrome. Good riddance!

  9. Ducks Nuts says:

    Good to see the Mullet learning to stand in a dignified manner. Next she’ll be wearing gloves and poor old Shane will be forced to wear a penguin suit when he takes her down the local for a pint.

  10. Frequent flyer says:

    Flooded Italia residents will be interested to find out that the review into the management of Ross River Dam has found that the delayed release of water actually was a good idea. The State Govt released the results of the review today and everybody did an outstanding job – apparently. Wonder what the local police think about the result.

    • The Magpie says:

      What is even more damning (pun intended) is the lazy reporting of the issue by the Bulletin. Running the story under a flood pic, the story was clearly lifted directly from the Courier Mail, and rambled on for the first two thirds of the story about the bushfires last year and how farmers were confused about their back burning rights – which, while a serious issue, was of zero interest to Townsville residents and more significantly, to Bulletin readers – especially the hundreds still homeless because of the release of the flood waters. Then there were a brief three or four pars which basically said the release of flood waters was done by the book and there was nothing wrong with the way the monsoon was handled. Whodda guessed?

  11. The Magpie says:

    Linda Ashton goes to war … eloquently. And The Magpie agrees with every word. Disgraceful behaviour and yet another mis-read of both community sentiment and ethical values by an iditor in the thrall of vested political and business interests.
    This from Linda Ashton to Jenna Cairney:
    Thank you Jenna Cairney for consistent exclusion of WFTAG’s contributions to this vital issue of water infrastructure – virtually since the day of your arrival. Our voice has been MIA in numerous Bulletin articles now. We WERE at the emergency meeting with the JACOBS team. We’ve posted numerous articles on our site (which you monitor). Our invitation was in the press release by George Christensen. We were the only reps to submit a written response to the Business Case (35 pages) at the Roundtable called by Phillip Thompson
    He will present this in person to the Deputy Prime Minister.

    We were the only reps to raise the issue of Burdekin cane grower groups not having been consulted for the business case. This omission could, with other feedback, cast enough doubt on the rigour of the JACOBS study. If so the government may, despite the business case assumptions, approve the pledged funding for the second pipeline.

    We’ve done two and a half years of tireless volunteer technical research and community education which you dismissed, in writing, as rumour mongering. We’ve submitted numerous factual articles for publication since you first spat the dummy. Not one has been accepted. I’ve emailed you with information to use in articles about yourself (our active journalism). Editorials on water security dried up when you thought the goal had been achieved. Seems Madura has been given the editorial nod to exclude WFTAG. Is this not blatant censorship?

    Thanks however to Tony Raggatt who has faithfully continued communication with our group through the three editorships since our formation. Oh for the days of Damien Tomlinson who met with us and valued our group’s diverse expertise, printing 38 weekly half page articles gratis, to inform a broader audience than our 14,000 on fb.

    We knew 8 months ago what was happening politically at all levels of government and freely offered our information when you assumed the $200 million was “home and hosed”. You can lead a horse to water as another appropriate saying goes ….
    Very discourteous. Very unprofessional.

    • The Magpie says:


      The ‘Pie is told you’re having some sort of Magpie meltdown on your personal FB page grandly titled the TRRA website. So The ‘Pie realises when he’s been some comprehensively whacked down in such a masterful manner, SO LET’S MAKE A DEAL, PETE.
      If you stop telling lies about about The Magpie, he’ll stop telling the truth about you.

    • The Magpie says:

      Perhaps, given water is so necessary for gardens and the like, there is a more appropriate saying from Dorothy Parker: You can lead a horticulture but you can’t make her think.

      Appropriate by dictionary definition for anyone who whores after Rupert’s shilling.

  12. Cantankerous but happy says:

    So the flood report has been released and surprise surprise, no one fucked up apparently and even releasing water earlier would not have changed the outcome, I find that hard to believe but that is what the experts say. As usual nothing of substance from those in charge about ensuring it doesn’t happen again, just some worthless drivel about making people in emergency centres much more aware of how completely fucked they are, because they apparently weren’t quite sure, because no one could tell them.

    So with nothing but bullshit coming from the govt it is time for the people to take matters into their own hands. One thing I can say for sure is that if the dam was at 10-15% at the end of December instead of the 60% it was last year, the place wouldn’t have flooded to the extent it did, so we the people have to lower the dam, because the govt or council clearly won’t. If every person in Townsville uses their full allocation plus a bit more, and hopefully some dry hot windy days evaporate the remainder, we just might have a chance at getting somewhere near the 15%, because the govt have told us that if it pisses down again, the same thing is going to happen, and they have no way of mitigating the impact, just extraordinary.

    • No More Dredging says:

      Cantankerous, when the dam is down to 10% capacity we go on to Level 4 water restrictions. If you campaign for citizens to waste water in order to lower the dam even further IN CASE WE GET A ONE IN A THOUSAND YEAR RAINFALL EVENT you will be branded a nut case. The ‘Pie will make an excellent case manager.

    • Rowdy says:

      No real surprise by the report findings by the government department.

      Extracts from the report prepared by the Qld Government Inspector General of Emergency Management.

      “The Ross River Dam is owned by the Townsville City Council. However, SunWater is responsible for the day to day operations of the dam under agreement with the Townsville City Council.1 While the dam owner is required to have an approved Emergency Action Plan (EAP) which must be reviewed before 1 October each year, SunWater provides the emergency management services, in line with the agreed EAP.”

      “Finding 13: Arguably, there would have been increased flooding if the standard operating procedures were followed and there was no manual gate operation of the Ross River Dam.”

      “Finding 14: If there had been increased water releases earlier from the Ross River Dam, there would have been no appreciable difference to flooding impacts.”

      Why did Council instruct Sunwater to manually open the gates earlier if it made no difference as per finding 14. Finding 13 and 14 contradict each other.

      What were those manual operations (how much were increased above the EAP and when? I cannot find these in the report.

      How did the EAP deal with the BOM weather forecast that said from 3-4 days before the event they were predicting 200-300mm of rain per day for 7-10 days?

  13. The Magpie says:

    The ‘Pie doesn’t want to start some dreary precedent of sports rants on this site, but he does have a simple question about the World Cup Cricket final last Sunday … if the victory comes to down to any count back … in this case fours and sixes after a super over … why not the simplest count-back in the first place of who still had the most wickets standing at the end of 50 overs.? The Kiwis would’ve won by two wickets, and as the match progressed into the final overs, both sides … and the crowd … would know the equation and make matters far more exciting. And fair.

  14. Frequent flyer says:

    So the dam management review was done by a public servant, who is paid by the State Government and answers to Anna Alphabet, who is best mates with Mayor Mullet…join the dots.

    • The Magpie says:

      So now we know … IT WAS ALL OUR FAULT FOR NOT UNDERSTANDING THE BRILLIANCE OF TCC FLOOD MANAGEMENT.Or so it seems from the Bulletin’s summary of the whitewash report.
      QUOTE: ‘It was found however that Townsville residents had low levels of understanding of terms used to describe flood risk, although nearly all ranked their understanding of flood risk as “very high”.
      Townsville residents, the report found, did not heed flood warnings and evacuation messaging as strongly as cyclone messaging and more education was needed.’UNQUOTE
      The inescapable conclusion is that it OUR fault for being dumb hillbillies not understanding flood warnings, AND NOT THE FAULT of the evidently poor communication skills of the TCC Disaster Management geniuses.
      Sorry, missed the salient point – which media department of the government or council wrote this report?

      • Scientician79 says:

        Nothing on the last minute release of flood maps??

        They were telling people at risk to evacuate and then didn’t provide the maps so people could know they were at risk!

        On the night of the event they were promised shortly and didn’t become available for several hours, and then had such poor resolution you couldn’t make out streets. And there was no excuse as it was subsequently discovered the maps were in the flood study document on the TCC website.

        If Mullet thinks this is the end of it she should wait for election day, this review and it’s associated reporting is an insult to everyone who was effected by the flood event.

        • The Magpie says:

          Not to worry, me old boffin, The Magpie has access to a highly secretive memo which will sooth your troubled mind – the government is determined to put to rest unwarranted suspicions such as you express by giving a secret directive for further action on the flood warning issue. The ‘Pie will risk a visit from the SAFP to bring to light the decisive, swift and uncompromising action contemplated by the no-nonsense Palaszczuk Government.

          This is what the memo email says:
          ‘STAGE 2(A) Part I(a)(i) Introduction to contemplating a plan to strategise scenarios in which forward options may be considered for consultation with early adopters in trial focus groups than may lead to a conceptual proof of concept to determine if there is an idea that may me explored by a committee (to be later constituted) for further referral to the working group appointed as part of the STAGE 2(A) Part I(a)(i).1 scoping.’ END QUOTE
          So you see, you are worrying for nothing, and your empty threat towards Fraulein Mullet is hasty indeed … the directive will of course take some time … certainly well past March next year.

          • Scientician79 says:

            Thanks Pie, good to know that they have clear and concise plan to resolve any outstanding issues.

        • The (Mostly) Civil Engineer says:

          The devil in this detailed report is in the original scope as developed by QG. It solely looks at the operation of the dam and specifically excludes all the questions people (such as above) legitimately want answered:
          – what happened to the promised flood maps which were released late and in an unreadable format
          – why did the much touted “point of truth” dashboard fail at about midday on Sunday and not provide any up to date information to residents
          – why were a string of confusing, contradictory and simply wrong texts and voicemails sent out, by whom and why – – “evacuate the Ross River area” was meaningless, produced panic and was just dumb (did it mean get away from the riverbank or evacuate nearby suburbs?)
          – where were the flood evacuation processes and mapping (beyond the broad “run for the hills” sketch)
          – why was the disaster management committee caught flat-footed when BOM and poor blind Freddy could this days ahead this was getting ugly and rapidly worse
          – what happened to disaster coordination during and after the event when most impact seems to have been made by individual heroic efforts rather than any planning on behalf of LDMC or TCC

          I could go on, but you get the idea. The report is the worst kind of smokescreen – it picks one area which did not fail and ignores the rest. Kind of like saying it is great that the new toilet water on Boeing 737Max planes does not contaminate the environment when the planes unexpected fall out of the sky and kill people.

  15. No Notion says:

    From the Bolt report this morning;

    “[In fact] in 1973, as part of land rights discussions, the federal government recognised Paddy Uluru as the legitimate, principal owner of Uluru… His views about tourists climbing the Rock were summed up in an interview with Erwin Chlanda of the Alice Springs News which quotes him saying, “if tourists are stupid enough to climb the Rock, they’re welcome to it” and “the physical act of climbing was of no cultural interest”…

    In April 2018 Bolt also wrote;

    “Discouraging climbing has substantially reduced the viability of the park to the tune of about 70,000 visitors per annum over the last ten years, compared to the previous ten years. Given an average of about $1000 per person, this comes at a cost to the Northern Territory economy of at least $70 million per annum.”

    My question is why is it suddenly not OK to climb and who makes up the shortfall in terms of tourist dollars?

    Stupid decision in my opinion

    • Steve, Belgian Gardens says:

      It doesn’t matter one bit why the change has been made. Even if the decision was purely arbitrary it’s the right of the owners to say what happens on their rock. If that means fewer tourists so be it.

      • The Magpie says:

        Agreed, Steve … up to a point. But if reported $70m in lost tourism revenue is then sought as a hand-out of public funds, whether to indigenous groups or the NT government, then it does matter to all taxpayers. But your basic point is right … it doesn’t matter why the change has been made, be it a ploy by the aboriginal industry or genuine cultural belief which has somehow suddenly come to the fore.

    • No More Dredging says:

      No Notion, in selectively quoting Andrew Bolt’s 2018 column, you seem to imply that people who climb Uluru pay $1000 for the pleasure and that “discouraging climbing” has reduced tourist visits and will cost the NT economy something in the order of $70 million per annum. It’s hard to tell if Bolt really meant what you seem to think he meant but in any case it might be handy to know that visits to Uluru are way less costly than you imply. A 2018 brochure states:

      “The only way to truly experience Uluru (Ayers Rock) is to visit it. No Uluru photo can show the magnificence of the size and colours of the rock (348 metres high). Like the Olgas, Uluru is set within the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

      There is an entrance fee into the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. The fee is $25.00 per adult (16 years and over) for a 3 day pass. Children under 16 years enter free.”

      Maybe Andrew spent three nights in the upmarket resort and hired a car and driver from the airport to spend a thousand bucks. Either way, I think the economic argument is a poor route to approach this question.

    • No More Dredging says:

      No Notion, in selectively quoting Andrew Bolt’s 2018 column, you seem to imply that people who climb Uluru pay $1000 for the pleasure and that “discouraging climbing” has reduced tourist visits and will cost the NT economy something in the order of $70 million per annum. It’s hard to tell if Bolt really meant what you seem to think he meant but in any case it might be handy to know that visits to Uluru are way less costly than you imply. A 2018 brochure states:

      “The only way to truly experience Uluru (Ayers Rock) is to visit it. No Uluru photo can show the magnificence of the size and colours of the rock (348 metres high). Like the Olgas, Uluru is set within the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

      There is an entrance fee into the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. The fee is $25.00 per adult (16 years and over) for a 3 day pass. Children under 16 years enter free.”

      Maybe Andrew spent three nights in the upmarket resort and hired a car and driver from the airport to spend a thousand bucks. Either way, I think the economic argument is a poor route to approach this question.

      • The Magpie says:

        Not necessarily. see Magpie’s previous comment on this matter.

      • Guy says:

        What a shame they have gone against paddy uluru’s wishes to keep the rock open to tourism – he must be spinning in his grave with decision. I can’t understand why they have against the decisions of the owner and custodian and keep the rock for everyone in perpetuity. My guesses are he will send a sign.

        • No More Dredging says:

          Guy, Paddy Uluru died 40 years ago, only a few years after he and fellow Aboriginal Australians were officially recognised as actually existing. He won’t be spinning in his grave about climbing because he said he didn’t care one way or the other. There are new elders now. They have a different view. It is their land, their Country, their rock. Visitors will just have to suck it up. Numbers will increase. Indigenous history and culture is the new black. It’s all the rage. Haven’t you noticed?

          • Guy says:

            I don’t understand you just wiped out party’s memory and wishes. As far as I see it we must respect paddy’s wishes – out of respect for his memory. As he said – it was the stories of the rock that were sacred , not the rock itself.

            I’m afraid all that’s happening now is a valuable income stream for the community disappearing, despite the original custodian saying it was no problem. Most people ARE respectful when they climb the rock, no doubt the act of climbing the rock gives them a bond with Australia, its history and aboriginal culture due to its iconic and timeless appeal.

            Nothing good will come of this.

          • Steve, Belgian Gardens says:

            Guy, only 13% of 395,000 visitors climb the thing. It would be statistically more accurate to say that nothing bad will come of it.

        • Wily Wombat says:

          My Grandfather said back in 1950 that people could camp on our property, He is long dead and our family say they can’t anymore as they disrespect it with litter and track damage. Andrew Bolt, thanks for enlightening me. Even when time changes things, they don’t.

      • No Notion says:

        To put it all in perspective, don’t forget that its just a rock.

        Admittedly, a big rock that’s about 600 million years old. Longer that any human can trace their ancestry.

        Nothing this old or this big should be “owned”

        What’s next, Mount Kosciuszko perhaps?

        • The Magpie says:

          Christ, don’t give them ideas ….

        • No More Dredging says:

          No Notion, Aboriginal people do NOT say they ‘own’ the rock. That is your terminology. Many Aboriginal people say they are ‘owned’ by the land. Clearly they have a different perspective and a right to exercise it. Let it go. It’s OK.

          • The Magpie says:

            In terms of language alone, that is absolute rot.

          • No Notion says:

            NMD, thanks for this enlightening information but I’m not exactly sure I understand it.

            If no-one says that they “OWN’ the rock, why am I regulated in my rights in respect to the rock? It follows that it must be a government decision.

            I was born in Australia; my ancestry goes back 200,000 years to Africa (exactly the same as every other human on Earth).

            I feel as much “ownership” of Australia as any other Australian. In my opinion there isn’t and never should be any “more entitled” Australians based on race.

          • No More Dredging says:

            No Notion, I beg your pardon. I had no idea you think you might be, like Pauline Hanson apparently (I heard her say it), Indigenous. That being the case, and provided you have an ongoing connection to some piece of land, you probably could make a Native Title claim. But somehow I don’t think you will meet the criteria. Honestly, old mate, do you really believe that ‘just saying it’ makes you Indigenous? FFS.

          • No More Dredging says:

            No Notion, where does your concept of “ownership” come from? Do you mean that when you were born in Australia everyone here owned the place? If so, how does that square with the undeniable fact that prior to 1967 Aboriginal Australians were not recognised as even living here and, unless they had purchased some freehold land somewhere (impossible I believe until after 1967) were not entitled to claim ownership of any land – even land they had lived on all their lives? Do you accept that Aboriginal Australians (and Torres Strait Islanders) were illegally dispossessed of their land from 1788 onwards and that it is only in recent decades that some accommodation has been made to recognise this? How can you just dismiss these major constitutional events out of hand as if they are meaningless?

          • No Notion says:

            NMD, hello again.

            To answer your questions:

            Q. Where does your (my) concept of “ownership” come from? A. Australian law.

            Q. Do you mean that when you were born in Australia everyone here owned the place? A. See answer to Q1.

            Q. Long winded question about terra nullius, the referendum of 1967 and land rights legislation. A. British and Australian Law.

            Q How do I dismiss these events? A. I don’t

            NMD, your virtue signalling is entertaining but misdirected. I have no qualms with native title. My only concern is the ability of a small number of Australians to hold the larger population to ransom. If (as you say) “Aboriginal people do NOT say they ‘own’ the rock”, why is it that am I not an equal shareholder as an Australian?

          • No Notion says:

            NMD, once again – thanks for the advice.

            You are absolutely correct, I wouldn’t qualify.

            No worries though, I worked and paid hard cash for the couple of hectares of planet Earth that I have title to.

  16. Long Time Lurker says:

    So Casie Scott has officially declared herself a non-starter for the State Election. Shame, she did an excellent job of getting Phil Thompson elected managing his campaign.
    Do I recall correctly The Pie revealing a while back that her partner Michael Brennan had pulled out of possible mayoral contention to give Casie the chance, as only one of them could stand for a position to give their young blended family a chance?
    Does this mean that Michael is back in the running for mayor perhaps??

    • The Magpie says:

      Good question.

      • I’ll be plucked says:

        Casie may well now campaign manage her partners tilt at the Mayoralty?…

        • The Magpie says:

          Nope. The ‘Pie asked Michael directly and his answer was emphatic – ‘I am definitely out. No interest at all.’. Shame that Casie isn’t going to have a gallop at state, she’d be a shoo-in, but respect her reasons for not doing so.

          • Long Time Lurker says:

            Agreed regarding Casie.

            Michael’s strong dislike for Jenny is widely known and is a viewpoint shared by many. I don’t see him allowing her an easy passage to re-election unopposed. I wonder if there is someone else they have in mind to support/campaign manage for?

  17. Hee Haw says:

    I see TEL are at it again advertising a job for the position of Economics and Policy Executive which was posted on Seek Yesterday 15th with a closing date of the 18th.

    I am sure this will have a name beside it already unless qualified professional are sitting waiting for opportunities like this to come up.

    Jobs for the boys anyone?

  18. I’ll be plucked says:

    Back to the ‘flood review’. If a major part of the damage to infrastructure, personal property and homes etc was caused by the release of water from the RR Dam (even though it appears this was necessary), does it not follow that those who made the decision are now responsible/liable for the damage caused? Just askin………

    • The Magpie says:

      Oh, no, nice try, Banjo, but it will be argued that it was an Act of God, God being a very handy invention of a non-prosecutable (and non-taxable) deity, which is the root cause of just about all the world’s woes through the perpetuation of the variously aligned but crucially different belief systems (differing only in order to claim superiority to their followers, worthy exclusively of their money).

      • Cockie says:

        Reminds me of this one,

        Diamond D’s brothel began construction on an expansion of their building to increase their ever-growing business. In response, the local Baptist Church started a campaign to block the business from expanding with morning, afternoon, and evening prayer sessions at their church.
        Work on Diamond D’s progressed right up until the week before the grand reopening when lightning struck the whorehouse and burned it to the ground!

        After the cathouse fire, the church folks were rather smug in their outlook, bragging about “the power of prayer.” But late last week ‘Big Jugs’ Jill Diamond, the owner/madam, sued the church, the preacher, and the entire congregation on the grounds that the church “was ultimately responsible for the demise of her building and her business either through direct or indirect divine actions or means.”

        In its reply to the court, the church vehemently and voraciously denied any and all responsibility or any connection to the building’s destruction.
        The crusty old judge read through the plaintiff’s complaint and the defendant’s reply, and at the opening hearing he commented, “I don’t know how the hell I’m going to decide this damn case, but it appears from the paperwork that we now have a whorehouse owner who staunchly believes in the power of prayer, and an entire church congregation that thinks it’s all bullshit

      • I’ll be plucked says:

        Thanks Pie; I was thinking that a point of litigious argument may well be the timing of the gate opening(s) and who decided that, why and the subsequent damage as a result. Anyway, just a thought. PS – Nice one Cockie :) !

    • Achilles says:

      Just to further muddy the waters, surely some portion of blame will lay with whoever approved construction on a flood plain in the first place.

  19. Election on the way says:

    Saw ” message bank” walker dropping off a trailer today around lunch at the traffic lights on oonomba rd intersection. This had a massive picture of him on it with a message that I didn’t bother reading. This wouldn’t have been cheap to put together, was it paid for from TCC budget as it is not an election year so no need to be doing this unless your trying to sell yourself to the ratepayers, or did he pay for it????

    • Cantankerous but happy says:

      If the good people of the Idalia flood plains vote that worthless dickhead back in it will confirm the fact that the people of this town enjoy being treated like absolute worthless shit and I shall delight in spending the next 4 years throwing rocks at them from my verandah as they walk on past, if I am here that long.

    • Old tradesman says:

      It is very funny how the council removed all the corflutes of all candidates in the recent Federal election as they were an eyesore and a distraction according to main roads, they are probably correct, but I will be watching with interest in the upcoming Local and State elections. They are on notice.

      • The Magpie says:

        Yup, keep an eye on this none, OT – is there a link to the council announcement?

        • Election on the way says:

          There’s still one labor poster on the oonomba rd intersection, same place as dickhead walkers trailer (still there)

      • Dave of Kelso says:

        I thought that after an election all candidates were required to remove all posters within a prescribed time.

        Could it be that our Jenny Hill Labor council, after the Federal Labor loss, saw the need to “clean up” ASAP to allow the electorate to “forget”, and return to it’s usual stupor in preparation for the local and state elections.

        • The Magpie says:

          There’s one for irony corner … our “Hard Rubbish Fuck-Up’ and the flooding fiasco mayor should want a ‘clean up’ of such a momentous appalling earth-shattering eyesore as old election posters.

          • Dave of Kelso says:

            It is all in the eye of the beholder.

            As Spike Milligan said, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Get it out with Optrex.”

    • Old tradesman says:

      Election on the way, it is quite obvious that Townsville rate payers have paid for the expensive trailer sign promoting Messagebank as it is endorsed by Townsville City Council on the bottom right corner, as I was watching it I was distracted and nearly ran into the tilt train as it is very close to the railway line. Main Roads will have to be notified.

    • Election on the way says:

      Sorry for not mentioning this in a previous post, I’ve looked at the trailer again today, unfortunately it’s hard not to as you drive by and in the top corner of the picture of message bank is the TCC logo. I didn’t see this yesterday so I guess this answered my own question about who’s paying for this bullshit, now my question is why is he doing this with our rates to advertise himself and why now after 8yrs in council?

      • Dave of Kelso says:

        Answer: He is feeling insecure.

      • Old tradesman says:

        He will claim that it is a notice board for consultation with his constituents as nobody can reach him by phone, as he is very busy, and reckons he is a good looking rooster.

        • Election on the way says:

          Thanks OT we must have nearly hit the train together. Did you see the labor party sign still there from election on the fence? Main roads must think its not a danger. What’s the chance of 2 magpie readers in the same place same time? Very high id say

          • The Magpie says:

            Wonder where the third was?

          • Old tradesman says:

            EotW, lets wait and see how many other trailers with the beautiful bodies of our present council appear around the various divisions, paid for by the generous rate payers of this city, purely to promote their reelection. The old saying that they all do it, will not wash.

          • The Magpie says:

            Purleese, a little realism here, OT, and all you other folks talking about this. Correct terminology, if you please … according to a wide cross section of ratepayers, ‘TRAILERS’ is bad English … they should be more correctly termed ‘TARGETS’. But among the more creative of our disrespectful youth, they are referred to as ‘Blank Canvases’.

          • The Third Reader says:

            I’m still here Magpie, observing from the sidelines and still enjoying your work.

          • The Magpie says:

            Good to know, mate.

  20. Alahazbin says:

    See Jackie Trad has not declared a property in her parliamentary assets. Looks like a bit of ‘insider trading’ going on. Should be investigated.

    • Arthur Itis says:

      It would seem Labor’s “politics of envy’ game play is being ‘progressively’ eroded by a TRADgic who looks to be OBEID in all things moneyed.
      Anna will be Jacqed off and the AnAl will be a bit sore with A’Pile’o’shit.

  21. Frequent flyer says:

    Wonder how much we ratepayers are paying for the light show on Castle Hill. I reckon council spends more money on film flam like this and Jamie Durie than on fixing roads.

    • The Magpie says:

      As The ‘Pie understands, the answer is nothing … but taxpayers are. And there’s nothing wrong with that in the way our democracy works. This whole arts festival (‘arts’ is stretching it a bit) shebang is a state government kiss-arse to a region with five wobbly state seats. That is not to say that we shouldn’t enjoy is for what it is, and thousands are doing just that. And just you watch Mayor Mullet and her voting aerobics class spin their re-election fairy floss out of this state-sponsored event.

    • J Jones says:

      It’s cool – why not have something interesting once in a while

  22. Frequent flyer says:

    My mistake. The way the Mullet and Greaney have been carrying on you’d think it was a council initiative. Nothing wrong with the light show, just reckon there are more important basic things that need to be fixed around town, like potholes in roads. Pity Olive Scott Young isn’t still with us.

    • Suburban says:

      And again, the elites are treated to a light show, or whatever, whilst the plebs in the suburbs eat cake

  23. I’ll be plucked says:

    First moon landing day, today. I remember being gathered around a BW TV in the hall of my primary school with about 100 other kids. What an achievement – the landing and subsequent walks, as well as 100 kids glued to a relatively small screen watching!!!

  24. Cappuccino in hand says:

    Flood report scenario 4 missed one small snippet of info … control of the dam was handed back from SunWater to council 48 hours before the full release because the engineers couldn’t agree on when things should happen. The council has no expertise in dam management. SunWater recommended opening the flood gates 2 hours after the actual time to work with the tide on the night. This would have resulted in a 200ml lowering of the flood level. It would have saved $millions. Of course, people in the know were not consulted for the report. It’s a serious whitewash of events. Council still has no expertise in dam management. Let’s hope for a dry 2019-20.

  25. GH says:

    JCU’s had financial losses for 6 years in a row and they still want to play in court for further bad publicity? The court of public opinion firmly sided with Ridd campaigning for more transparency in how grant money is monitored. I guess logic isn’t JCU’s strong suit anyway. Still suprised the VC is still taking home her $1m/yr pay packet.

    • The Magpie says:

      Of what do you speak,GH, had a beak around and can’t see anything that says JCU have decided to appeal? Has The ‘Pie missed it, or are you just making a general comment on the situation?

      In the Ridd matter, JCU’s biggest strength is also their biggest problem. They are highly likely to win an appeal because of the appallingly inept performance of that up-himself goof Sal Vasta, but that simply means his findings will be overturned and a new trial will be ordered … you can imagine the legal teams already inundating sailmakers for new spinnakers and filling up the order books of heli-pad builders. The world of academia is hermetically sealed off from any realistic business practice in matters like this, but hey, what the hell, the government will foot the bill one way or the other. And a failing business model will still pay its floundering boss a cool mill or so a year.

      • Steve, Belgian Gardens says:

        There was mention in a letter not long ago that JCU was appealing, but the source was Ridd’s GoFundMe page, so it might have been him rattling the collection tin.

      • GH says:

        Hi Magpie!

        I just saw a 20th July piece on JoNova’s site about Peter Ridd and JCU poised for an appeal. Although in hindsight, that’s probably her opinion.

        It just pains me – JCU is already severely understaffed and their legal/ PR budget is just draining all the resources. It’s the students and research that will end up suffering. You’re right though, the Ivory towers are too high for them to care.

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