An Explanation.

I should attempt to explain my absence from posting at this blog for sometime.  I had a job which required my attendance for 12 or more hours  per day quite frequently and something had to give. Some of the posts that will appear in the near future had been drafted in that time but nothing completed. For example, ‘The Blonde with the books’ referred to an incident nearly 12 months ago and was half written for quite some time.

I welcome any new readers and welcome back any old ones.

The blonde with the books.

I was recently walking from one part of my job to another, past the wildlife park.

I saw a blonde woman sitting facing away from me, she had some books sitting alongside her and was reading one.  An unconcious calculation told me that I didnt know her.  Probably mid twenties or so. I began to imagine why she would be sitting there alone and came up with the thought that she had probably found a good spot to read quietly with the animals nearby.

I kept walking, knowing that the truck would be there to meet me.

I heard someone say ‘Hey Dad!’ and turned to find that the blonde with the books was my 17 yo daughter.

They do grow up fast at that age!

leah hunt (2)



Police say the donkey carcass was being towed with a chain.

This photo
attributed to the Northern Territory Police is of a dead donkey being
towed by a 4WD utility.

I first came across it in this
  by Andrew Bolt in which he refers to his source as this
from ABC Northern Territory by Tom Nightingale.

From the articles comes an intriguing
tale of suburban sensibility confronted by frontier reality.

The facts as reported are a 13 year old
boy was stopped by police on routine traffic patrol at about 1 30 PM
on Thursday 13th October, on Coniston Road in the Northern
Territory. His vehicle was determined to be unroadworthy.  He was
towing a dead donkey. A loaded firearm was discovered on the front
passenger seat of the vehicle.  Two more firearms were discovered on
the back seat.

The boys 52 year old father was at a nearby cattle
station and he will be summonsed for various firearm and traffic
offences. The boy will also be considered for Youth Diversion for
traffic and firearms offences.

Coniston Road appears to run from the
Stuart Highway in a west northwesterly direction from between Aileron
and Titree about 150 km from Alice Springs. It passes through two cattle stations, Pine Hill and Coniston en route to a third, Mount Denison.  It appears as though Mt. Denison traffic predominantly travels south to Yuendumu before taking the Tanami road into ‘Alice’.

There are some mining tenements that would use the Coniston Road for their access and some Aboriginal people would use it as they go about their daily business but, essentially, it is an internal road in two properties.

According to this page, Max and Jaquie Lines own the Coniston property and their son, Chris Lines that works the property is only 29 and unlikely to have a 13 year old son.

In December ’09, Mr Gil Bowman was the owner of Pine Hill station, though it appears to have been for sale in recent times. Mr Bowman owned the property as far back as 1986 and may have a son or grandson aged 13.

Mr Bowman fits the profile of the 52 year old father far more reasonably than does either Max or Chris Lines.  Of course the 13 year old lad may have been a visitor to the station or a ringers son, but I doubt it.

Having set the scene, we have Gil Bowmans 13 year old son on a road which transects their property. A road that services some mine workers and another station. This is the country we expect to find people experiencing ‘boys own adventures’. Look at the way in which we embraced Troy Dann’s Outback Adventures or The Bush Mechanics.

For the NT police to ‘throw the book’ at the lad in the manner in which they appear to be considering suggests that nothing has changed in 80 years.

In 1928, Constable George Murray led what became known as the Coniston Massacre after the murder of a dingo trapper named Brooks. Not content to investigate the murder amongst the local people and apprehend the murderer to bring him to justice, Murray instigated a month of terror that would see numerous Aboriginal people dead or wounded.

Clearly overpolicing is still rife on the Coniston Road.


This post tells us that the lad is Gil Bowmans great nephew and that the book was thrown at his father to the tune of $1700.  Read the comments!!


Drinking from longnecks

For those unaware a longneck is a 750 ml beer bottle.

I have always been able to rely on my theory that if a man drinks directly from a longneck, he is bad news.  By far and away the majority of blokes I know will quite happily request a glass when drinking from longnecks.

One of my earliest gauges of whether this is a truism was when one of my tenants introduced me to his mate who had just blown into town.  I took the word of my tenant that ‘Joe’ was a good bloke and offered him a place to live. Within seconds, like a leprechaun freed, he picked up a longneck from behind a post and proceeded to drink from it.  Well, I had already said he could stay so i could hardly go back on my word.  I heard later that ‘Joe’ had managed to drink every available beer in the place that night, whosever it was and when the nightshift workers came home, the atmosphere became very tense.  6 Oclock in the morning saw ‘Joe’ and his mate, my tenant, decamp with rent owing and anything of value in the share areas in the back of the mates car.

Another example was of a bloke that was living with his ‘nephew’.  The bloke asked for my help in getting work and offered to do some work about the place. Said he was a painter. His work was shoddy, and the car firm I introduced him to rang me three days later to ask for their car back.  In the mean time the bloke, his ‘nephew’, the nephews mothers caravan and the car companies ute had dis-encamped.  He too drank his beer straight from the longneck.


Bolts Humanity

From a man who is known for his attacks on the foolishness of climate alarmism, for his political standpoint and his well known views on asylum seekers and Aborigines comes this essay on bullying.

My youngest daughter was subject to bullying over a number of years and this was only successfully managed by taking her to a new school.

You may be the only one you know now who prefers the library, likes hymns, is
gay, speaks software, doesn’t drink, or wants to talk about Ancient Rome, but
wait until you can leave school and scout around. You’ll be amazed how many
others you’ll find of your kind. Enough to make you feel normal. You may even
marry one, and create an oasis of love in what now looks to you a desert.

This heartfelt paragraph goes a long way to falsifying the many words recently written that pupport to show Bolt to be racist, sexist and homophobic.

He’d paid his rent!

The tenant had a stack of cars, some going, some not. He had a dog no one would go near for fear of attack. It had recently busted loose and attacked a child. He lived large in a share house, making people uncomfortable about using the share facilities and staying in their rooms. He made no secret around town that he thought his landlord was a f*$^knuckle.  He refused to do a thing to keep the place he lived in in good order and was very sour around all the other tenants, especially anybody who might be new or thinking about taking a room at the premises. He cursed the inconvenience of urgent maintenence and the intrusion of tradesmen into his space.

But he’d paid his rent! How could the landlord even think of evicting him?

Jo Public’s Dilemma

Joanna Public sweeps the floors of the Campbelltown General Hospital, as part of her job as a domestic. Her days start early and her wages are low. She makes sure her kids get to school although shes rarely there to see them off because shes already at work. She also fills the shelves at a local supermarket for some additional income. At least, when it started the income was additional. Its more often now that her extra is paying for household staples.
Jo is a member of the union, her union, the Health Services Union. She remembers the heady days when her Union joined the Your Rights at Work rallies when the Howard government had introduced WorkChoices. They were planning to make it impossible for women like her to stay home from work if they had sick children without risking their jobs. If she couldn’t look after her kids who could? The older ones were ok alone but not the younger ones. Wasn’t it great to be with friends on the street, everybody smiling while they listened to the speakers at the rallies. Kevin Rudd was going to sweep Howard’s laws out the door. Most other stuff was ok, so Kevin was going to keep that but get rid of workchoices!

Today Jo is torn. She has seen the news reports showing that Craig Thomson was using his Union Credit Card in knock shops. She knows that when she goes to the shops she has to choose out of date eggs for a 50c discount or there’s no eggs for her table. There’s no chance that Craig Thomsons wife has to search for discounted lines in the shops. Each payslip for years has shown that payment to the union and she had been proud to pay it. To pay for action to get equal pay for women, action against bastard bosses who used to be union members too before they went onto salary and to pay for the free services that the union helped provide.
Now they are saying that the only action that her fees had been paying for was Craig’s horizontal action!

She rang the union on Monday to talk about what she had to do to resign, to stop that payment going out every week so she could buy proper eggs. The person she talked to said that they had had dozens of calls that day and that no-one in the office was very happy. They had asked her to wait until after the National Executive meeting on Wednesday before she resigned.

The Jo Public scenario may be fictitious but the damage to the union movement is not. Unions are in the face of their members every week on the payslip and every week the workers must assess their union membership. Gone are the days of compulsory unionism, where if the union wasn’t doing its job you didn’t have a choice, no ticket, no job.

Kathy Jackson and the National Executive of the HSU had no choice but to take the action they have. To not do so would have left the stain of union missuse of funds in the face of the members. One can only guess at the carnage that would have taken place if the HSU hadn’t acted. The members now have a reason to stay with the union but it wont be carte blanche as it was before. It will be months before the membership is seen as stabilised and it will probably be only after the union has acted to recover the irregular funds.

Any member of any union that is doing it tough will be asking the question each week, ‘Is someone at my union just using my membership payment in a knockshop?
The union movement will be taking very careful steps to ensure that this doesn’t happen again easily. If they don’t they will suffer the consequences as members decide they can spend their own money more usefully than the union. Workers will also be asking questions of their unions in workplaces and pubs across Australia, and if the answers are not forthcoming, the reaction will be swift.

I was a member of the SA branch of AMIEU and would be again. My questions were answered satisfactorily.