Archive for December, 2009

Best wishes to Rush Limbaugh

I debated whether to publish this before or after the New Year’s Eve post…and settled on “after” as this is far more important than the beginning of a new calendar year and deserves to be at the top of the page for longer.

I would like to extend my best wishes to Rush Limbaugh, who was taken to hospital earlier today with chest pains. Early reports said that he was in a serious condition, however a very brief statement on his website says that he is now “resting comfortably”:

Statement from RushLimbaugh.com

I wish Rush a very speedy recovery.

Samuel

December 31st, 2009 at 06:46pm

The decade terminates in T minus…

I expect to be back on deck on the blog tomorrow. My plans for tonight involve watching 112 Emergency on SBS Two (it may be an abysmal show, but it is thoroughly addictive, and my need to see Dr. Driessen and Mr. Bender oust the corrupt Mr. Sellman forces me to continue watching it…and it would be nice to see Martin actually warrant his top spot on the credits by appearing in more than the opening titles) and then I shall go to bed. My phone will remain off until at least 3am (yes, I have a mobile phone again) so that I can sleep through the change of year, unlike last year where my sleep was interrupted far too many times, prompting a bit of a tirade on 1WAY FM.

I will admit that, earlier this week, I did toy with the notion of heading out for the new year changeover…but quickly dismissed the plan once I realised that I:
a) still have trouble stomaching the idea of being out of the house, on foot, after dark
b) struggle to enjoy the Civic night-life under any circumstances, and
c) don’t give a single hoot (let alone two) about the local timezone declaring a change in year at a different moment to the vast majority of timezones

If you intend on celebrating the new year, then I hope you enjoy yourself even if I doubt that I will ever understand your urge.

Samuel

December 31st, 2009 at 06:31pm

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everybody. I hope that whatever you are doing today, you have a wonderful and enjoyable day.

Samuel

2 comments December 25th, 2009 at 11:30am

A good indicator that one has recently been watching Yes Minister

The desire to turn simple two word phrases in to convolutions such as this:

I hereby submit to you, with all due consideration being given to the applicable current portion of the generally recognised and accepted uneven segmentation of the present day as it stands in the local area and prevailing local language and culture, having taken in to account the possibility and applicability of laws surrounding any necessary adjustments, be they positive or negative, to the generally measured equal segmentation of the day which is most commonly portrayed outside of military circles in a manner which only allows for half of the available segments, a generally positive and potentially presumptuous communication relating to the perceived state of mutual and personal affairs (bearing in mind that not all factors have necessarily been included in the formulation of the view of the perceived state of the aforementioned affairs) containing an inherent desire to open a mutually convenient and multi-directional dialogue, without inferring any guarantee that, with the benefit of hindsight, such dialogue will necessarily be viewed as having resulted in the overall increase in the knowledge of subjects discussed either personally or as a collective.

Anyhoo, I thought I’d just pop in and say hello. I do plan on writing much more (in a more comprehensible form than what I wrote a few moments ago) before Christmas…but my plans have a habit of remaining as plans and not turning in to actions. We’ll see what happens.

Samuel

December 22nd, 2009 at 02:20pm

Is the Civic Exchange the centre of Internode’s ACT universe?

It’s a question I find myself asking, given how the Civic Exchange is missing from the list of exchanges to be affected by Internode’s backhaul provider’s imminent network maintenance.

During the times above customers will experience a lack of data flow and/or authentication for upto 60mins whilst our backhaul provider conducts software upgrades on their network.

The following exchanges will be impacted:

BELCONNEN,BLCN
CRACE,CRCF
DEAKIN,DKIN
GUNGAHLIN,GGHA
KAMBAH,KBAH
LANYON,LNYN
MANUKA,MNKA
MAWSON,MWSN
MELBA,MLBA
MONASH,MNSH
QUEANBEYAN,QNBN
SCULLIN,SCLN
WESTON CREEK,WECK

This makes me wonder if the Civic Exchange (which I am connected to, and have yet to publish photos of), is the only exchange, or one of a very limited number of exchanges, in the ACT to have a direct connection to the rest of the Internode network, and if the rest of the exchanges connect via the “backhaul provider” and the Civic exchange.

This kind of thing, for better or for worse, fascinates me…in much the same way as it would fascinate me to see where my phone line goes within the Civic Exchange.

Samuel

1 comment December 13th, 2009 at 10:31pm

Samuel’s Musician Of The Week: Natalie Imbruglia

Natalie gets the award this week, and the feature song is Torn


Torn – Natalie Imbruglia
by natalieimbruglia

I thought I saw a man brought to life
He was warm
He came around
And he was dignified
He showed me what it was to cry

Well you couldn’t be that man that I adored
You don’t seem to know
Or seem to care
What your heart is for
I don’t know him anymore
There’s nothin’ where he used to lie
Conversation has run dry
That’s what’s going on

Nothing’s right
I’m torn
I’m all out of faith
This is how I feel
I’m cold and I am shamed
Lying naked on the floor
Illusion never changed
In to something real
I’m wide awake and I can see the perfect sky is torn
You’re a little late
I’m already torn

So I guess the fortune teller’s right
I should have seen just what was there and not some holy light
But you crawled beneath my veins
And now
I don’t care
I have no luck
I don’t miss it all that much
There’s just so many things

That I can’t touch
I’m torn
I’m all out of faith
This is how I feel
I’m cold and I am shamed
Lying naked on the floor
Illusion never changed
In to something real
I’m wide awake and I can see the perfect sky is torn
You’re a little late
I’m already torn
Torn

There’s nothin’ where he used to lie
My inspiration has run dry
That’s what’s going on

Nothing’s right
I’m torn
I’m all out of faith
This is how I feel
I’m cold and I am shamed
Lying naked on the floor
Illusion never changed
In to something real
I’m wide awake and I can see the perfect sky is torn

I’m all out of faith
This is how I feel
I’m cold and I’m ashamed
Bound and broken on the floor
You’re a little late
I’m already torn
Torn

Samuel

December 13th, 2009 at 05:59pm

Science versus Greenpeace

She might not be convinced by the facts being given to her by Lord Christopher Monckton, but she is at least surprised enough to want to check it out for herself.

She will certainly get a shock when she gets home and discovers that Monckton is right, and her beloved Greenpeace have been blatantly dishonest with her about global warming.

(Thanks to Padders for the video and the link)

Samuel

December 13th, 2009 at 04:20pm

It’s all your fault! We were never taught “no”, so offering us anything is tantamount to forcing us!

Ernie Dingo, clearly as upset as I am that The Great Outdoors was axed, and yet abysmal rival travel show Getaway is still on the air, has worked out why Aboriginal society, especially in rural communities, is portrayed as having a drinking problem…it’s all the white man’s fault.

INDIGENOUS icon Ernie Dingo has hit out at hypocritical “white people” who lecture Aborigines about alcohol consumption.

“What you should be worrying about is who is giving them access … who sells alcohol? Not black people,” Dingo said.

“We (indigenous people) don’t have a problem. Our problem is to say ‘no’ to you blokes, to white people … ‘no’ is not really part of our cultural background.

“There are more white alcoholics than there are black people in this country, so don’t come at us with restrictions and Aboriginal laws about alcohol.”

Mmm, perhaps…but there are more drunk or drugged Aborigines on a per-capita basis…and Ernie, mate, you’re not the only one being restricted. We have RSA, and more importantly, if you had bothered to check the news this week, the Police are cracking down on alcohol-fuelled violence with “Operation Unite” at the moment.

There is still a big difference though. As a percentage of population, alcohol-fuelled violence isn’t a massive problem in white society…or even in urban mixed society. The whole reason for the 2007 Northern Territory Intervention was that entire settlements were being overrun by alcohol-fuelled violence, child abuse, and child neglect.

As for that ridiculous argument that you don’t know how to say “no”. We gave your people school so that they could learn the word “no”, along with the rest of the language…but who has the higher truancy rate, white people, or Aboriginal people…yes, that’s right, the latter.

If you insist on running with the “we can’t say no to anything you offer” line, well perhaps we shouldn’t be offering Centrelink benefits to you…or maybe we shouldn’t be offering you citizenship. We could just build a big fence and give you the Northern Territory.

More seriously though…if it as all the fault of white men as Ernie claims, isn’t it therefore also our responsibility to intervene?

Ernie, I appreciate that you were using the bizarre statement to promote your musical which nobody has ever heard of…but for you, one of the leading examples of an Aboriginal bloke who is decent, to come out and make one of these stupid “all white men are evil” statements, does nothing to promote harmony between white and black people…if anything, it hinders it drastically.

And I really shouldn’t have to say this…but anybody who complains about my use of “white” and “black” in this article, will have their comments deleted. I see no reason why it should be OK for Ernie Dingo to use that language, and not OK for me to do the same.

Samuel

December 13th, 2009 at 02:58pm

Who’s getting paid for all this global warming stuff?

Usually it’s people on my side of the argument who get accused of being paid by the big oil companies (I still pay retail rates for my petrol, thank you very much)…but the truth couldn’t be more different. It’s not the climate sceptics who are being paid-off, it’s the great prophets of Global Warming Doom at the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:

A story emerging out of Britain suggests “follow the money” may explain the enthusiasm of the United Nations to pursue caps on carbon emissions, despite doubts surfacing in the scientific community about the validity of the underlying global warming hypothesis.

A Mumbai-based Indian multinational conglomerate with business ties to Rajendra K. Pachauri, the chairman since 2002 of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, stands to make several hundred million dollars in European Union carbon credits simply by closing a steel production facility in Britain with the loss of 1,700 jobs.

The Tata Group headquartered in Mumbai anticipates receiving windfall profits of up to nearly $2 billion from closing the Corus Redcar steelmaking plant in Britain, with about half of the savings expected to result from cashing in on carbon credits granted the steelmaker by the European Union under the EU’s emissions trading scheme, or ETS.

Yeesh, the head of the IPCC making money from a carbon-belching steel plant, about to make money by putting 1,700 people out of work so that he call sell off his Global Warming Doom credits.

So this is how you get a Nobel Peace Prize these days is it?

Samuel

December 13th, 2009 at 02:17pm

Oh Chris, what have you done?

I find myself in a position of being stuck for words here. On the one hand I like Chris Smith as a broadcaster, but on the other hand I am deeply disappointed by his actions.

RADIO host Chris Smith has revealed he is a bipolar alcoholic after being taken off air for a lecherous drunken bender at 2GB’s Christmas party.

A remorseful and emotional Smith yesterday also told The Sunday Telegraph that his latest alcohol-fuelled shocker had destroyed his family and could ruin his career.

The 45-year-old father-of-two said he was so drunk on champagne and red wine at the party and loaded on “the wrong antidepressants” that he became a “runaway train” and could not remember harassing four female colleagues or annoying two other workmates.
[..]
The talkback host said his embarrassed and humiliated wife Ali and children had walked out of the family home after learning of his crazed night.

Although he can’t remember any of it, he was told he had been “inappropriate” with four female workers – and even tried to kiss one.

Smith said each of the women had accepted his apology. It is understood that one of the women was weathergirl Magdalena Roze.
[..]
Smith said he was determined to get help for his alcoholism and save his marriage and family.

“They’re probably going though it even worse (than me) because they’re just humiliated and embarrassed by their husband and their dad,” Smith said, struggling to hold back tears.

“My family’s estranged from me at the moment. I totally understand that. It’s the right course – my wife has taken the right course and I intend working on that.

I also can’t help but feel sorry for the guy. He does seem to be genuinely remorseful, and willing to take responsibility for his actions. There is also a part of me that sympathises with Chris’ plight given my own mental health problems…although in my case I just hate the medication enough that I would prefer to deal with the problem myself. That hasn’t stopped me from “self medicating” on a few occasions, and doing some stupid things as a result…I suppose what I’m trying to say here is that I can identify with the shame that Chris must be feeling right now.

I am hopeful that he follows through on getting the help he needs. His apologies have been accepted, so I hope that Chris is able to work towards rebuilding the trust between himself, his colleagues and, most importantly, his family.

Samuel

2 comments December 13th, 2009 at 01:46pm

Farewell and good luck to Michael Watson

2CC/2CA’s production guru Michael Watson is leaving the stations after having worked there for 14 years, according to Jock’s Journal.

Michael has done a lot of great work for 2CC and 2CA over the years, although if I have to pick one particular thing which I have the fondest memory of…it would probably be the old Sgt. Pepper competitions on 2CA. I was also particularly fond of the piece he put together (OK, I’m 99% sure it was him…somebody please correct me if I’m wrong) after I announced my (later aborted) run for federal parliament on 2007. Just looking around for that now, I realise that I didn’t ever post it online…so here it is:

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Download MP3

And of course, there was that brilliant remix of my original Samuel’s Persiflage intro

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That anybody could make something good out of that ghastly (albeit fun) original intro is quite an achievement.

Best of luck for the future Michael!

Samuel

December 11th, 2009 at 05:42pm

The radio battle: Channel Nine versus Channel Nine

Further to the last post about Steve Liebmann taking over from Steve Price, I should point out that as of next week, the morning talkback battle in Sydney will be between two Channel Nine personalities. Ben Fordham on 2GB, filling in for Ray Hadley, and Steve Liebmann on 2UE. Admittedly, Steve is technically a Foxtel personality, but it’s fair to say that those of us out here in Free To Air Television land still regard him as a Nine personality as his Crime Investigation Australia show airs on Nine.

One could even argue that it’s A Current Affair (Fordham) versus Today (Liebmann)…but that’s stretching the laws of time and history just a tad too far.

Samuel

December 11th, 2009 at 04:54am

Good morning Steve

Well, at least the callers won’t have to learn a new name. 2UE yesterday announced that Steve Liebmann will be taking over the morning show once Steve Price vacates the chair today.

Steve Liebmann and Steve Price
Steve Liebmann and Steve Price. Image courtesy of 2UE

That picture there was a bit of a surprise to me…I didn’t realise that Steve Liebmann is around the same height as Steve Price. Pricey is shorter than me, and I’m often the shortest adult in a room…I never knew that Liebmann was around the same height.

I enjoy it when Steve fills in for Steve as I think Steve handles the show better than Steve (Oh, alright, I’ll stop deliberately confusing you)…seriously, I like Steve Liebmann and have enjoyed having him fill-in for Steve Price, but is this the right decision for 2UE? That depends entirely on their aims. Liebmann, unlike Price, seems to take a less solid stance on issues, but Liebmann comes across as being more informed about issues. This is mainly due to the rather noticeable fact that Price seems to read whatever is plonked in front of him, to the point that his “interviews” often sound like a series of teleprompted questions filling the void between answers.

Price was clearly forced to tone down his “angry ant” act when he moved from Drive to Mornings, and 2UE have slowly added more and more lifestyle guff to the show at the expense of news related discussion. I don’t think Price sounded comfortable doing the lifestyle stuff, and I can’t recall hearing him being as passionate about anything on the Morning show as he was on his old Drive show. It’s a real shame as, based on his Drive show performance, I thought he would do a great job on the Morning show. With any luck the rumours are true and John Singleton will recruit Price to a 2GB clone in Melbourne, and give Price the free reign that he needs to produce a good show.

Steve Liebmann, as I mentioned earlier, I enjoy listening to, although I have to wonder if he will express his opinions more clearly as the regular host of the show, or whether 2UE are recruiting him in to the role so as to further expand their non news-based talk programming. The Fairfax Radio Syndication website indicates a shift back to news-based talk:

The program deals with issues of importance to NSW and the ACT
Program content consistent with content in the news bulletins

That said, I’m sure that the Steve Price show description said the same thing, and contained the same line as the Liebmann description about the show being a “proven ratings winner”…an interesting line for a show which doesn’t exist yet. A few grains of salt don’t go astray when dealing with Fairfax Syndication show descriptions.

I strongly suspect that the Liebmann show will have at least the same amount of lifestyle guff, if not more, as the Price show had, simply because of what 2UE’s General Manager Tim McDermott had to say about Liebmann:

We’ve conducted extensive research over recent months and Steve Liebmann continually returned strong figures. He’s seen as a broadcaster who can deliver the very latest news and information, mixed with opinion and entertainment

Hmmm, that extensive research would be the “lets pay our listeners to come in to the station and tell us what they think of the station” surveys. I don’t understand the mentality of “lets ask our small audience what they want to hear more of so that we can have even less listeners”, but it seems clear that 2UE have given up the fight with 2GB for the hard-line newstalk format, and are going with a more lifestyle oriented format which, so far, is not rating.

Tim McDermott went on to mention “a fresh Monday-Friday line up on 2UE in 2010” without ever actually saying what that lineup contains. That’s OK though, because we already know what that line up is, because we’ve already been told that it’s the existing line up. John Stanley and Sandy Aloisi at Breakfast, Steve Liebmann in Mornings, Tim Webster in the Afternoon, and “The Two Murrays” at Drive.

A brief aside…Tim Webster nearly made me collapse from shock a few weeks ago when he suddenly changed his tune on the Emissions Trading Scheme in a manner which, if you hadn’t been listening to him previously, could convince you that he had always held his current view. He has been spending virtually all of the year (outside the lifestyle segments) advocating Global Warming Doom, and now, suddenly, opposes the ETS…I’m also regularly amused by the people who call Chris Smith on 2GB and call him “Tim”, and the same people who call Tim Webster on 2UE and call him “Chris”.

Anyway, back to Steve Liebmann, I notice that 2UE are making a big deal out of the fact that he will be working right through Christmas/New Year (he was always going to fill in for Price anyway), but conveniently omit the fact that Steve will be on leave for three weeks in February as he will be in Vancouver covering the Winter Olympics for Foxtel.

I’m more inclined to listen to Steve Liebmann than I was to listen to Steve Price of late, but I do hope for a few things which I doubt will happen…more firm opinions from Liebmann, and less lifestyle guff stealing time from serious conversations…just turn Webster’s show in to a permanent lifestyle show if you must and be done with it. Please, 2UE, leave serious stuff in the morning show. It makes no sense having your overnight programming being more serious than your daytime programming.

Best wishes to both Steves. I’m looking forward to hearing what direction the Liebmann show takes. I am also hoping that Singo’s mooted 2GB clone does eventuate in Melbourne with Steve Price on-board in an unleashed manner, and that it can become a launching platform for a nationally syndicated Andrew Bolt show…I may be dreaming a bit too much on that count though.

Samuel

2 comments December 11th, 2009 at 04:48am

The best radio news story presentation of the year

From FOX News Radio‘s 5am Pacific Time newscast from Sunday the 6th, comes this gem of a news story which is probably the most amusing presentation of a story so far this year. It had me highly amused for some time.

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Alastair deserves an award for that one!

For those of you who can’t be bothered listening, here’s the transcript…although it really doesn’t convey the story as amusingly as the audio does.

Anchor: The reclusive communist nation of North Korea hoping to grab the world’s attention with a foray of high end fashion.
[musical fanfare]
[hysterical and incomprehensible ranting in a foreign language]
Reporter: This may be North Korea’s greatest export…propaganda messages often aimed at insulting America, but now the reclusive nation hopes to earn some foreign dough from fancy denim. NoKo jeans, a label launched in Sweden but made in North Korea.

The pants won’t be for every comrade, they’ll sell for a very capitalist $220, but North Korea seems to be opening up to American ways, recently licensing its first fast food joints…it still can’t stomach too much American, the burgers aren’t called “burgers”, and the blue jeans will only come in black.

In London, Alastair Wanklyn, FOX News Radio.

December 10th, 2009 at 12:49pm

Almost sort of back

Physically I’m here, but I think my brain is elsewhere as I am still very tired. Thank you to Maritz who held the fort for a little bit longer than was arranged, Maritz will be back on Monday with her weekly column if all goes to plan.

That is the first time that I have been completely off the radar for quite some time as I did not take my laptop with me to Melbourne, and I am continuing to live without a mobile phone. I even forgot to take a watch with me, so my sense of time was non-existent. More on that later, as that topic will take a while to to write.

I’m just going to pluck the quickest blog post off my list of things to write, and publish that for you. I’ll be back later today with more items of interest.

Samuel

December 10th, 2009 at 12:35pm

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