Oz Blog News Commentary
Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 19:24 Source

If we look back at 2014, perhaps we gain some insights that might help in steering a better 2015. In the post below, Croakey contributors nominate the highs of the past year – including how some countries and volunteers responded to the Ebola...

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George Monbiot Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 19:20 Source

How my friend’s grandfather went rogue – my second winter’s tale for the festive season.

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 31st December 2014

Arthur, my friend Steve tells me, was a wonderful grandfather. He loved the company of younger people, and always had a good story to tell. He remained as sharp as a pin and lived independently until his death at 101. His gold retirement watch, which stopped on the day he died, still sits on Steve’s beside table.

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MacroBusiness Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 14:15 Source

Dear readers, all of us here at MacroBusiness wish you a prosperous and exciting 2015! We would like to thank you again for a successful 2014. As is customary at this time of year, MB’s two main bloggers – David Llewellyn-Smith and Leith van Onselen – will be taking a much needed break, and MB […]

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The Australian Independent Media Network Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 13:54 Source

With investigations continuing into the downing of MH17, we are still no closer to knowing who did it, and how, reports Dr George Venturini* in Part 11 of his outstanding analysis.

Beyond the fog (continued).

The Dutch Safety Board has put together a useful Q&A on the background to its Preliminary Report.

It says:

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The Australian Independent Media Network Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 11:09 Source

$1 billion dollars a week. That is what the LNP have been “borrowing” every week since they were elected in September 2013. At this rate, by September 2016 they will have “borrowed” in excess of $150 billion taking the national “debt” from $284 billion to $434 billion plus.

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Cheeseburger Gothic Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 11:06 Source

The time has come to throw open the sluice gates on Spoiler Dam. If you haven"t finished Emergence I"d advise you to stay the Hell away from the next couple of blog entries.

It"s been a week since The Dave arrived amongst us and the most pleasing thing for me has been the number of readers who"ve finished the book in just a couple of sittings. A few even ploughed through it all in one go on Christmas Day.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 01:20 Source

We all know that the Coalition’s dire predictions about the introduction of the carbon tax proved false – Whyalla was not wiped off the map and lamb roasts did not cost $100.

We now know that Greg Hunt was wrong in saying that the carbon tax would do nothing to reduce emissions.  Carbon emissions declined across Australia by 1.4 per cent in the second year, compared with a decline of 0.8 per cent in the first year.

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Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 00:18 Source

The Daily Examiner, 31 December 2014, Page 3:While the voting numbers varied between our online poll and votes lodged directly with The Daily Examiner, we decided to weight these views differently because many online voters were not buyers of our newspaper.We're pleased to be supporting a majority of Australian-made cartoons - including Zanetti on our opinion pages - and we look forward to your feedback.On the same day Bill Dickinson took to Facebook to express his displeasure - thereby joining a growing band of valley residents unhappy with a range of APN News & Media’s decisions

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Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 00:16 Source

The Australian 26 March 2011On 30 December 2014 The Sydney Morning Herald reported:The number of women on government boards has slipped below the 40 per cent target and a new report says men made up 75 per cent of new appointees within Tony Ab

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Thursday, January 1, 2015 - 00:00 Source

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Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 23:47 Source

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 160,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 7 days for that many people to see it.

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Digitopoly Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 23:12 Source

As is traditional, here are Digitopoly’s top posts of 2014:

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The Australian Independent Media Network Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 20:33 Source

We are soon to close the doors on 2014. Am I right in presuming that we’ll all be glad to see the back of it?

It hasn’t been too memorable, on the political front at least.

It has been a year where ordinary Australians have been kicked from pillar to post by an ideology-driven government whose vision clearly focuses on feathering the nests of the not-so-ordinary Australians.

It has been a year where all social, economic, technological and ecological issues have been ignored by a government too inept to confront them. And perhaps too blind to notice.

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Cheeseburger Gothic Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 12:41 Source

We won't go the full spoiler set yet. I have a post I want to write first. But discussion of the cast for the Emergence movie has already broken out on Twitter, with @dotrat and @Gatorau leading the charge to the casting couch. They battled it out over whether Dave should be played by Jeremy Sisto or Jim Caviezel.

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Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 11:51 Source

I do not know why my piece The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (154) is not admitting responses.

I suggest you put them up under this.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 11:06 Source

Abbott must be having a horrible Christmas break. He can’t have missed that his old buddy, his mentor Rupert has completely dropped him and in doing so, has given permission for his newspapers to admit that PM Abbott is a dud.

Read more Views: 702 Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 11:00 Source

My New Year's resolution for 2014-54-12/30/14 Dec:12:1420001642 is to learn these stupid time formatting strings.

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Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 10:03 Source

Hoping to get a result more favourable to the Liberals, Newspoll rang on landlines those Adelaidians not out of the house round Christmas, and came up, alas, with a result, 53 percent two party preferred, more favourable to Labor than any in South Australia since 1970. It was likely to deliver Davenport, a Liberal seat, to Labor in a byelection on January 31. The Liberal leader, Steven Marshall, whose mudgudgeon mouth repelled, it is said, no more than a hundred thousand female voters, was now preferred as Premier by 29 percent, a worse result for an Opposition Leader than any since polling began.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 09:35 Source

There are times that I repeat myself. That’s right, I repeat myself. I suspect politicians do it, in order to give them time to think, but I do it because, sometimes, it seems that people weren’t paying attention!

Now, I don’t think I’m always right. In fact, just the other day I conceded to my wife that she may have been correct about a disagreement we had just last 2002. After I’ve had time to think, I can usually see that another’s point of view is valid, and, sometimes, I can even see that I was wrong.

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 08:36 Source

Science, Technology & Environment Microsoft May Soon Replace Internet Explorer With a New Web Browser – Wired The Rapidly Disappearing Business of Design – Wired Machine Intelligence Cracks Genetic Controls – Wired The Encryption Tools The NSA Still Can’t Crack Revealed In New Leaks – Gizmodo Lewis Carroll’s Doublets Net of English Words: Network Heterogeneity […]

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MacroBusiness Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - 08:29 Source

  Global Macro / Markets / Investing: Offshore wind power generation is growing but costs are still high – The Economist Where to hide in emerging markets rout - Reuters Another list of predictions for 2015 – FT This is a better way of looking at the “unknowns” – Marginal Revolution Investors believe aged care […]

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Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 15:55 Source

‘It must have been like this’, any audience member over sixty will say of Leigh’s time capsule of the bohemian/Victorian smells and textures of the last thirty years of William Turner. Like a grunting tapir, unknowable, evasive, secretive, pre-human, carnal, Timothy Spall gives us an ochre-spattered Artist as true as Alec Guinness’s Gulley Jimson in The Horse’s Mouth or Ed Harris’s Pollock in Pollock.

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you said it... Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 15:03 Source

Originally posted on Unveiled Thought:

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you said it... Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 15:03 Source

Originally posted on Unveiled Thought:

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Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 14:35 Source

The major danger of the Jordan backed Abbas UN resolution is that it might be supported. If so, in one simple move Mahmoud Abbas will have proved he has been totally corrupted by the funds he and the Palestinian Authority receive from the US (assuming that is that you think even more proof if necessary). The resolution totally abandons much that the Palestinians should defend.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 14:31 Source

There’s an article in The Australian – from a former Labor Minister so the Liberals can’t blamed for this (yet?) – which suggests that contraception be compulsory for people on welfare. It won’t let me link it directly but you can find it easily enough by searching for Gary Johns, “No Contraception, No Dole” or read a summary here.

It begins:

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Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 14:17 Source


Veteran train driver Thomas Percy is looking for work after 50 years of loyal service to the train industry, following an incident that saw him drive an extra mile past every stop in order to impress his bosses. When questioned as to why he thought it was a good idea to go the extra mile, Mr Percy said he simply was looking to "get ahead" in his job.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 13:45 Source

Part one: Democracy – what is it?

In the recipe of what a democracy is there are many ingredients, but simply explained it is a political system where like-minded people come together to form ideas that become a philosophy. They then become the foundation of political parties. These ideologies pull in different directions in a quest for majority approval by the people. It is a far from perfect system that has variations all around the world. It is elastically flexible (we even have democratic dictatorships), unpredictable and at its worst, violent and extremely combative.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 12:36 Source

The way in which the mainstream media (MSM) chooses to report and discuss the economy, i.e. in conventional neo-liberal terms, reinforces the notion that the economy is some sort of God who must be served and obeyed by the people in one particular way to the exclusion of any other. This is a false concept wrapped in metaphorical jargon that has not only poisoned our minds but, in the process, allowed us to become enslaved to its will.

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The Australian Independent Media Network Tuesday, December 30, 2014 - 11:08 Source

Political leaders should not embrace the ‘can do’ elements airpower offers, but instead seek longer-term policies which inevitably would not have the volatile backlashes associated with its use, writes military historian Dr Strobe Driver.

Strike-fighters over Baghdad

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