Friday, April 16, 2010

Swine-flu-gate: Andrew Bolt wants to kill your Grandma

The World Health Organisation has “admitted that they may have overreacted” to the threat posed by H1N1 swine flu.

One can only agree that, with the death toll approaching a mere 18 thousand worldwide, the H1N1 swine flu ‘pandemic’ has been a bit of a fizzer.

This will probably be cause for relief or even celebration for most of us, but for people like Andrew Bolt it merely provides more confirmation, if any were needed, that nobody other than Andrew Bolt can be trusted about anything.

According to Bolt,

their “overreaction” wasn’t a mere mistake, but an utterly predictable bid for more attention, cash and power of the kind we expect from UN bodies.

Not being paranoid myself about Werld Guvment, I’m quite prepared to give the WHO the benefit of the doubt. Mistakes will unfortunately happen, but when making a decision that may affect many lives, most of us may prefer to err on the side of caution.

Quite likely, moreover, heightened public awareness of the threat will have contributed to saving many lives. The downside, of course, is that next time people might figure they can afford to be more complacent about such threats.

Especially so when people like Bolt actively undermine public confidence in health authorities for grubby political purposes, or just to garner hits for his miserable website.

One could be forgiven for supposing that, in the final analysis, Andrew Bolt wants to kill your Grandma with swine flu.

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Transport Trivia Friday

Presenting milestones in Victoria’s transport landscape...

This week: 1971


The last ‘wig-wag’ (mechanical pendulum) railway signal in Victoria is replaced by a modern flashing device.


Construction work officially begins on the Melbourne underground railway loop, initially estimated to cost $80m. (On completion in the mid-1980s, the final cost was $500m.)


Speeds on Victorian country roads are limited to 70 mph for a 12 month trial period.

Next week: 1972 ! !

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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Not-so-bad Karma

On the weekend I evicted a big brute of a Huntsman Spider from our house.

She’d been free-ranging about the place for over a week, during which I resisted the primeval urge to squish the spider with a rolled up newspaper (or whatever was the primeval equivalent of such implement).

Such an action, I’ve been assured, would result in Bad Karma.

In all likelihood I’d be reincarnated as a big brute of a huntsman spider, destined to be squished with a rolled up newspaper for trespassing human habitation. Upon which, as recompense for my arthropodic martyrdom, I'd come back as an arachnophobic human. And the cycle would continue in perpetuity with the thwack! thwack! thwack! of newspaper crunching exoskeleton ringing through eternity.

So, to beat this rap I determined to await an opportune time and place to evict the brute from the premises without causing undue harm to a fellow creature. Lo and at last, my chance presented when I spied her skulking on the ceiling near the front door.

I rushed back from the hall closet wielding a broom, particularly selected for the softness of its bristles, so as to occasion minimal violence on our unwelcome guest.

I have to report that ‘guiding’ an obstinate arachnid through a door with a broom is not as easy as it might sound. The brute first ended up on the floor, then in an eight-legged flurry dashed underneath the hallstand, from where she had to be ‘coaxed’ out. Finally, with a deft flick of the broom handle, she was ejected onto the front porch from whence she eight-legged it into the garden — somewhat shaken, but intact!

I related the above to our office guru, who informed me to my great relief that, yes, I’ve averted the Bad Karma of coming back as a big brute of a huntsman spider... but it’s possible I may come back as a broom.

Karma sucks!

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