28.2.06

Australia's strange underground world Binomea

The small city of Orange, in the Western Plains of New South Wales, Australia, is best known for its thriving fruit orchards and its reputation as the hometown of Andrew Boyle "Banjo" Paterson, the composer who wrote Waltzing Matilda. Little do local residents realize it but, about 200 metres (660 feet) below the intersection of Byng and Anson Streets, is a large cavern that may be linked to Binoomea, the world of the Aborigines. I myself have been to these places and although aware of a vast underwater sea was never aware of this. The website is well worth reading I assure you Giant reptiles it seems live there and are a huge version of our Goanna lizard I do mean huge by the way Just imagine coming face to face with one of these only six metres in length (twenty feet) instead of the usual one metre and smaller version's as well. Even the reputed Komodo dragon only grows up to three metres. As shown here. Now don'’t get confused here as I realise we do have monster Crocodiles but they can only live in the Tropics and the far north at that. Ah we are a peace loving people and will not subject tourists to these monsters lol; so still come and visit.

26.2.06

Violent storms and Tornados in Australia

Not a myth and it seems we get them a lot especially in South East Queensland; we may not call them that as we have our own words like willy nilly I can see you laughing, You folk in the Northern Hemisphere BTW. but it seems we get more than the United States from what I read and that's dinkum. More deaths are caused in the USA as there are more people living there so I guess their's gets reported more than ours. the photo is courtesy of of this guy's website; It seems he is a stormchaser This I can understand of course and I know the ferocity of the Hurricanes that hit the States recently was horrific. I was prompted to post this after reading about the terrible weather that Melbourne is undergoing at the moment; It seems 30 odd millimetres was dumped on the city in less than an hour which is 13.1496063 inches. when I have told some folk in the UK this I was met with the usual cry of what a load of Bull etc. I recall a particular day on the North coast of New South Wales when 25 inches was recorded and that is not an unusual thing to happen either. I must admit we are used to it but then I guess the folk in the USA are as well. I am wondering if the time will ever come when science will be able to control the weather like one reads in Sci Fi books? If so I do wish they would get a hurry up on this and I'm sure Sailors would be relieved. It seems the US Government is working on it but only to create further havoc, Then I read this But I am not assured after reading it ; As I noticed war was prominent; What's new there? Food for thought World!! We will in the end have to get rid of these loonies I think, and get some scientists who will make a genuine effort to reduce this bad weather along with other urgent problems such as sickness and hunger. Comments are most welcome if genuine.

25.2.06

GST 'flawed and overly generous'

From: Dennis Shanahan February 25, 2006 PETER Costello has declared that one of the Howard Government's greatest reforms of the past 10 years - the introduction of the GST - was flawed and overly generous to the states. What Mr Costello seems to have forgotten is that since the introduction of the Goods and Comsumption tax (GST) is that there are more people living in this land of ours now and so to try and reduce it will just make it all that much harder for ordinary workers and Pensioners; Never forget that this Liberal government of ours is conservative; I have said enough I think.

Cane Toads in Australia

These pests introduced from Hawaii by settlers and with the best of intentions are now spreading at an alarming rate, down to New South Wales and west to the Northern territory and some I believe have been found in Western Australia to the north; They will eat almost anything. Pet food is the favourite it always seems to vanish; they are also very toxic; I do know from experience that if you bash them really hard with a shovel or spade they seem to die; they don't ok it only stuns them. I got most of my info from here but I knew most of it already as do most Australians. There is a comical side as well as up here in Queensland our Rugby league football team are known as the Cane Toads mainly when playing their grudge series against New South Wales; they are known as the Cockroaches lol. Funny really as both States get these creatures; I am not a natural born Queenslander and lived most of my Australian life in New South Wales and they usually win; I am too long in the tooth to change allegiances now; So I guess I'm a Cockroach and we win too lol. .All the same that Cane Toad is a nasty looking brute. It also kills our native wildlife at an alarming rate; Still maybe someone will come up with something to eradicate them permantly both of them I hope.

24.2.06

Follow up to Telstra

And I believe every word I was told I got the info in an e-mail and have only changed or deleted another company's name We had a lot of trouble with Telstra and our phone bill so we changed everything over to another company and have had no trouble since. We were getting charged for calls to overseas destinations when no one was in the house all day and they said someone must have been in the house to make the calls. When we told them that my daughter worked all day; I was in Victoria at the time; well you must have given the keys to someone so they could get in was the reply;they had an answer for everything it seemed;. Eventually we gave up. When we changed to another company the accounts from Telstra this other company checked a couple of the numbers for us who lived there. Two days later they rang and told us they had tried to ring the numbers and no such numbers existed. One was in Africa and was for $38-95 and one was in the USA for $65-28. So you work that one out. We have been with this other company for a few years now and had no trouble at all. Telstra has had its own way for so long and they were getting away with blue murder and no matter what you said they would tell you if the account wasn't paid they would disconnect the phone and our name would have been on the bad debt list so what could you do but pay up. They knew they had you over a barrel. my daughter has just put dinner in front of me so take care, Anon Take a tip from this Australia and give Telstra away and as regards this letter strange things like that have happened to me with Telstra way back when it was the PMG Department; and trust me that was a long time ago.

TELSTRA

Which as far as I am concerned means The Evil Larrakins Seeking To Railroad Australians. Telstra staff battle for jobs Michael Sainsbury FEBRUARY 24, 2006 TELSTRA has effectively sacked two entire marketing divisions, forcing about 100 employees to reapply for their positions. All marketing staff will have to compete against outside candidates for their jobs through headhunters Hudson, as the company moves to a new sales and marketing structure. Telstra consumer and marketing group managing director David Moffatt told his department competition would be "very intense and very aggressive", Telstra sources said. Explaining the program last Friday, Mr Moffatt told staff the process was "spill and fill". "It is amazing how poorly they are treating people that they call valued employees," one Telstra marketing executive told The Australian. Not just employees Mr executive subscribers as well. Well here is a little story about this almost private telephone and internet Provider Company that may amaze you, it did me. Almost a year ago they sent me a bill for internet services under the big pond name; just the monthly bill so I paid it. A few months down the track they billed me for that same period again; you might say an oversight; you may be right but I think not.I found the original in the end with the receipt and was credited. I made enquiries and found it had happened to other folk I know. Well that is my first whinge. Next up I thought I will change internet providers so I found out that big pond was on a list saying they would honour transfers to other companies so I went ahead because one reason was five free addresses of a fifty Megabyte allowance for each one against Bigpond'’s lousy twenty Megabyte allowance and no extra addresses unless you paid for them. Out of curiosity I phoned Bigpond or Telstra and asked if there was a fee involved with a transfer their response was oh about seventy dollars. When this bill came in it was for $256.00 not seventy as quoted; rather a large hike I thought picking up the phone and querying it I was asked to wait and a few moments later the young lady on the other end said just pay $60.00 it will cover it; this I did and got an official receipt. Well that was my second whinge. About three weeks ago I was sort of asking around as my phone plan with this bunch of crooks is $ 29 and some, and I heard there was a cheaper plan; so I asked them and was told oh yes the cheapest is $18 per month OH I said please make my account like that as from now. Got the bill in today $32 I haven't made a call this month either; I queried it and guess what because I moved some but not all of my phone services to another company I don'’t get the cheaper one but did they tell me that of course they didn'’t. My advice to all Aussie's is drop Telstra like a hot coal they are THIEVES I have dropped them in all my phone transactions now.

A very nice surprise

I had a great surprise on Monday and Tuesday even although I knew about it. My Sister came here for a visit and brought her Hubby for a change as she usually comes here on her own from the UK; the Picture of them both was taken at a lookout just before entering the village of Montville up on the Blackhall ranges. It seems they had been to Agra in India and Hong Kong then here to see their daughter in Sydney and then on up to the Whitsunday's, then back to Sydney (Bondi beach). after a few days on to Wellington in New Zealand for a few days, Fiji for a few days and then a two day stopover in LA on the way back to London. On their last night on the sunshine coast my daughter cooked a beaut Barbecue at Maloolooba beach; My son only saw them very briefly maybe 5 minutes and then it was pure chance; not that it mattered. Maybe it cost us all a little more but it was worth it.

Warning ... Mr Costello wants more demands from citizenship

February 24, 2006 Peter Costello / Pic: John Feder . PETER Costello has called for a tougher US-style citizenship oath that demands loyalty to the Australian "compact" as he outlined his vision for a more muscular nationalism. Lambasting the spread of "mushy multiculturalism", the Treasurer has bluntly called for hard-line Muslims and others who don't observe Australian values to be stripped of their citizenship. And he said people coming to Australia should have the same respect for Australian values as visitors to a mosque who are asked to take off their shoes. And for once I agree with our Treasurer and that is a rarity; there is just one more thing he could do of course. The final touches so to speak; just DEPORT them back from whence they came. Like he said we must all become Australian citizens if we wish to live in Australia. I am just praying (at home not in a Mosque) that he never becomes Prime Minister.

23.2.06

World Lifesaving Championships 2006

This is being held at Geelong Victoria Australia; I believe it goes for a few more days, Finishing on the twenty third of February. Aussies Dominant However the part I was really interested in was the club aspect which I was won overall by the Alex Surf Lifesaving Club at Alex Headland on the Sunshine coast located between Maroochydore and Mooloolaba Queensland Australia. Also My youngest son scored a Gold Medal but his Wife won a Gold and silver medal Well done The club and also my Son and Daughter in law. At the completion of the international teams component of the World Lifesaving Championships in Geelong and Lorne, Australia stood firmly atop of the dais 113 points clear of its nearest rival.Australia scored 770 points ahead of New Zealand on 657 and South Africa on 508.

19.2.06

Israel and Hamas

RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) - Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh will be the next prime minister of the Palestinian Authority, the Hamas official due to take over as parliament speaker said on Saturday. "Hamas has decided that Ismael Haniyeh will be the prime minister for the next government," Aziz Dweik told reporters in the West Bank city of Ramallah ahead of the swearing-in of the parliament. The worrying thing especially for Israel is what will this Palestinian authority do as regards their remarks about Istrael?this Authority was spawned from a terror group run by Yasser Arafat called the PLO or Palestine liberation Army he was also the first representative of a non government invited to address the UN General assembly and also armed with a side arm left in the lobby according to to a report I read; this occured in 1974 and amazingly this terror mob were granted special observer status in 1975 despite his threats towards Israel. It transpires there were talks with the Government of the United States resulting in an office for them in Midtown Manhattan; I did know some of this as did a lot of others, but I did find it incredible then as now. The United Nations Security Council chamber echoed Monday with a barrage of resounding opposition to Israel's principle decision to deport Palestinian President Yasser Arafat was not taken well at the UN who actually critisised Israel for wanting him removed after suicide Bombers wreaked their usual havoc in Israel. It turns out that the PLO helped the USA in Beirut; President Ford thanked them publicly over their help. This in my opinion still does not give them licence to attack Israel; ok so Israel has gone to war over it but then so have a lot of us gone to war and a lot of the excuses was never proven. Israel is in an entirely different position than our troops in the Middle East. All the same would you want this happening to you in your street or road? I don't think so. I know I would not.

Warlike Afghanistan A sorry affair

It seems that there has always been war in this country and it is still going on; surely it is time to actually stop all this I mean here we are in the twenty first century and we are now involved; it has it seems been going on for thousands of years; and what do we do carry on after the last invaders the then USSR; just look at a few of these simple facts. This Persian King Darius 1 conquered the country and so it has gone on right down to the present day It's my belief it will never end there and now I read of even more foreign soldiers going there the Canadians have sent a 2000 odd contingent along with Americans, Australians (I have an ex son in law there at the moment), Brits Dutch and Romanian troops. I can understand to some extent why G.W.Bush and the rest went there obviously because of the 9/11 attack he saw red I guess. Also we did liberate the place from the Taliban and alsoAfghani Moslem woman. However the loss of life on all sides is shocking and the UN were only negotiating in the early eighties with the Security Council in which the USSR vetoed their vote of course; what's new there? It is my belief this struggle there will never end; even the USSR pulled out in the end. It is a sad thing to say really and I certainly feel for these unfortunate people but I think we have to seriously weigh up whether to get out NOW. They do of course have an official website The history of this land as I said has been warlike for thousands of years and we will not fix it in my opinion. I recall my Father telling me once as a boy quote " East is East and West is West an never the twain shall meet" unquote and I reckon he had a valid point but it is far too late now as we have met intermarried etc; The web site of Afghanistan is very interesting as far as their history goes, Surely there has to be a better way of solving this?

16.2.06

UN urges US to close Guantanamo

I myself think it is time Camp X-Ray (now called Camp Delta) as it was first called at the US Navy Base at Guantanamo is also closed; my thoughts on the Iraq struggle have been mixed but these prisoners are not even awarded the status of prisoners of war (POW) no Geneva convention applies here. Of course if one was caught by the Iraqi Secret police then I do believe things were horrific or so I have read. Iraqi secret police wired for torture April 14 2003 A secret tunnel leads underground from the main administration block to a prison where exposed electrical wires run from wall sockets to a bench in the interrogation room. The walls of cells which housed up to eight prisoners are scribbled with prayers and calendars indicating time spent inside, written in Arabic, Hebrew and even Chinese. Solitary confinement is standing room only and shared with toilet plumbing. The small bathrooms, remaining blankets, prison garb and plastic buckets are filthy. Plaster and paint is peeling off in large sheets and all around are posters, paintings and murals of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. The name of the Secret Police who ran this for Saddam Husein was called the Mukharabat also akin to the western worlds intelligence services and apparently if you were a westerner or even somebody that spoke out of turn you were then imprisoned to a slow death according to these reports; No Geneva convention applied here either it was ignored just like a certain enemy now an Ally did in the Pacific war; now that is a clue surely. All the same The United States is really guilty of the same thing and now that bunch the UN are sticking their oar in but this time they do have foundation for their ire. And if with hindsight a certain gentleman with allies he got on side had listened; then it is possible that from the western point of view the loss of human life plus this disgusting business with in my view POW"s would have been nowhere near as severe as it is and still an ongoing problem. Some inmates have been at the prison more than four years UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour has said she sees little alternative to closing Guantanamo Bay. She said she doubted the US judicial system could undo the damage already done, with some inmates having been there for so long.

13.2.06

I figured we would win this one

Well we had to and we did it in style as you can see from this news report. Aussie batsmen on the rampage RAMPANT Australia watched the one-day records – and Sri Lanka's title hopes – come tumbling down at the SCG last night as a crushing victory by the hosts set up a series decider tomorrow. In an extraordinary second final, Australia thumped Sri Lanka by 167 runs after recovering from early trouble and posting its highest one-day total of 5-368, courtesy of a mammoth partnership between century makers Ricky Ponting and Andrew Symonds. Trailing 1-0 in the finals, a shocked Australia was reeling at 3-10 in the third over before Ponting (124) and Symonds (151) posted a 237-run rescue mission – the highest partnership by Australian batsmen in one-day cricket – and comprehensively dominated the Sri Lankan attack. Spin whiz Muttiah Muralitharan was hammered in his final appearance at the SCG, taking 0-99 off his 10 over’s and claiming the dubious honour of the worst ever one-day figures. On an already forgettable night, things got worse for the Sri Lankans when Australia then rolled their batting line-up for 201 in 36 overs. Only Mahela Jayawardene (50) and Russell Arnold (64 not out) provided any resistance as the tourists' morale and finals momentum from Adelaide ground to a screeching halt and shifted into reverse heading to the decider at the Gabba tomorrow. "To be 3-10 and then go on and get our highest score ever is a testament to the character of this side. It has to be one of the greatest comeback wins ever," Australian vice-captain Adam Gilchrist said. "Particularly after the momentum we'd given away to Sri Lanka in Adelaide." Symonds broke two bats in a rocket-fuelled 151 off 127 balls, the highest one-day score at the SCG, serving a further reminder of the one-day potency that saw him poll most votes for Australia's best one-day cricketer last week. The big Queenslander was forced to deal with a pushy fan on his way back to the SCG dressingroom, however, fending off a misguided embrace with his bat. There were no reported complaints. Ponting, too, continued his dominant summer in blasting his third century at the SCG this year. The Australian skipper was run out for a duck in the first final but blasted nine fours and three sixes in 127 balls. The 237-run stand between Symonds and Ponting passed the previous record of 234 set by Ponting and Damien Martyn against India during the 2003 World Cup. Both batsmen marked their centuries with enthusiastic celebrations. Ponting survived a controversial moment on 57, when Jayawardene claimed to have caught him in the gully in a low, diving catch but the ball was judged to have bounced. Ponting refused to walk as the Sri Lankans celebrated. After conferring with his colleague, umpire Peter Parker ruled the skipper not out. Given neither umpire's view was obstructed, the officials were unable to call for a video replay and Sri Lanka was fuming. But Jayawardene apologised to Ponting for appealing when a message from the Sri Lankans' dressingrooms informed him that TV replays showed there was no catch. "He came up to me a few overs later and apologised and said 'I'm very sorry, I didn't know that it bounced short of me'," Ponting said. Ponting told Jayawardene: "Apology accepted and let's get on with it." Well Done lads

12.2.06

A Cold War Mystery

Most of the time nothing seemed to happen Its faceless muteness satisfied no human appetite. So the rare incidents that personalised the great stand-off were seized upon and attained a strange glamour disproportionate to their strategic importance. Among the most celebrated incidents was the disappearance at Portsmouth Harbour in April 1956 of the frogman Commander Lionel Crabb, aka Buster, who, at the behest of someone - probably MI6, maybe acting without government sanction - was very likely investigating the hull of the Ordzhonikidze upon which Khrushchev and Bulganin had sailed to Eden's England for a state visit that signaled a marked thaw in relations between the post-Stalinist USSR and its European ally in the Great Patriotic War. Or would have signaled such a thaw had Crabb's activities gone unnoticed. Preposterously, government papers relating to the episode will not be declassified until 2057. Even then, they may not be entirely conclusive. Did Crabb - well past his prime and a zealous boozer - drown? Was he shot by a Russian sailor, as a KGB defector claimed? Was he captured and persuaded to work for that organisation? This last fate was initially posited in Germany in the late Sixties: it is only farfetched if we delude ourselves that covert activities are necessarily low-key rather than extravagances devised by potent fantasists. Personally I think he was shot after possibly being given the third degree; I do know these two had come to the Royal Naval Review at Spithead which is viewed by the Monarch usually so most likely Prince Phillip did the honours. < There has been a novel written about this I believe and would you believe that we the public cannot find out these matters until the Brit government release the papers on the incident about one Commander Lionel Crabb, a British naval diver who disappeared in the cold, swirling waters of Portsmouth Harbour in 1956. This definitely makes one think long and hard here; here is this poor unfortunate guy just vanishing without any really dinkum orders to be where he was and it is still going on one only has to look at the strife in the Middle east to see that. Crabb vanished while spying on the Ordzhonikidze, a Soviet cruiser that had brought Nikita Khrushchev on a goodwill visit to Britain. The espionage mission, ordered by MI6 without the knowledge of Anthony Eden, the prime minister, should have been routine. Crabb was an experienced diver who had enjoyed an illustrious underwater career. Eden's fury about the mission, which could have damaged British/Soviet relations, led to a cover-up of Crabb's disappearance. A year later a headless, handless body in a frogman's suit was washed up. Despite the coroner's satisfaction that the body was Crabb's, neither his ex-wife nor his girlfriend could identify it. Speculation about what really happened continues. He was on a spying mission for sure and was just unfortunate to get caught which I believe is why the agency that hired him and did so just because he was one, retired and two, known as a bit of a boozer and who believes boozers in a predicament like the one poor old Buster was in. Is the world getting any better? Sometimes I truly wonder. However these facts did emerge but who seriously believes this rubbish about a headless handless man if so well the Brits could have ordered that as what would the Russians have gained out of that; I am talking 1956 here people and not 2006.

Aussie troops may remain in Iraq

February 12, 2006 NEW Defence Minister Brendan Nelson has given the strongest signal yet that Australia's troop deployment in Iraq may continue longer than expected. Australia's 460 ground troops are in southern Iraq's al-Muthanna province protecting Japanese engineers. Of course this could be changed if our opposition actually gets elected and I doubt it will with the charisma of the leader they have at the moment; which is not to say that the electorate is with Honest John as it is not, but as I explained once before in a previous post with our system of preferential voting it is not who gets past the post first they can come in last and still get elected and possibly into government. I understood that the opposition leader said if elected he would bring the boys and girls if there are any there home if he got in but to leave a contingent in Afghanistan; The SAS our special forces for folk who are not in the know are there I know indeed I saw an article in one of our newspapers making much of the poor equipment they have there; surely Mr Nelson you will put that at the top of your list? Indeed it should be done already; to me that is a disgrace still maybe it is why you are the new Defence Minister so do the job right mate will you we have special forces depending on you; their LIVES depend on things like this. The images on this post are courtesy of the Australian press by the way.

11.2.06

Winter Olympic games open

February 11, 2006 Australian athletes Alisa Camplin leads the Aussies into Turin's stadium HOSTS Turin welcomed their first Winter Olympics in 50 years with a star-studded Opening Ceremony to inaugurate the 20th Winter Games. I thought I would do a quickie on this as most of us here are sports mad; not all of course. We do look a tad overdressed there it's true, not our usual casual attire at all lol.