March 2010

Barnaby Joyce dug himself so much deeper into his I wipe my bum with the productivity commission hole today that it’s in danger of collapsing in on top of him.

The ABC’s Samantha Hawley this morning took apart the new opposition regional development and water spokesman limb by limb in an interview on AM.

You can listen to it here. Warning, you might be hiding under your desk by the end.

Latest 2 of 121 comments

  • Louis McLennan says:

    06:17pm | 01/04/10

    Get real Eric. You either have completely misread that or you are trying to be a prick. “Get real folks.” was excluded in your “quote”. “When someone tells you to get real, they want you to get a reality check and to stop behaving as though you’re living in a… Read more »

  • Sam Chowder says:

    05:39pm | 01/04/10

    I hope the productivity commission reports are better quality than these thin 2-ply ALDI rolls, no grip at all. Read more »


At breakfast yesterday my two-year-old daughter wanted to “read” me the Easter card she got from a relative. “One day, they went in the forest, and then they were finished. The End,” she said, looking up from the card. “Now you read it to me.” So I did. The greeting was:

Easter time is here again
That lovely time of year
When we especially think of those
We hold especially dear
So naturally you’re thought about
And wished the nicest things –
All the special happiness
A joyful Easter brings!

I’m enthusiastic about explaining things to her so I was about to drop a few sentences somehow explaining Easter was really about God, but a thought crossed my mind and stopped me. I have no tolerance left for the Church’s protection of child abusers, its silencing of victims and failure to adequately apologise or explain why it failed to act against paedophiles. Why, I asked myself, should my daughter be exposed to these men in frocks and their beliefs?

For someone raised as a Catholic this is an arresting thought. Even though its dogma is world-renowned it may still be hard to grasp, for anyone not brought up with it, the all-or-nothing way Catholicism requires you to accept, without question, the authority of the Church. Put simply, if you don’t accept the Church you’re not Catholic.

Latest 2 of 453 comments

  • Rob Pollock says:

    07:07am | 13/05/10

    Sam Miller has his numbers wrong… Mr. Miller’s statement, “10% of the Protestant ministers have been found guilty of pedophilia” has no basis in fact!  It was refuted by the named source in 2002 and remains refuted today. In his original 2003 speech Mr. Miller cites a July/August 2002 Sojourners… Read more »

  • Ronk says:

    03:39pm | 04/05/10

    Saint-elect Mary MacKillop never “railed against”, or even publicly demurred from in the slightest, any Church doctrine. Read more »


It’s said that all’s fair in love and war. But when it comes to elections in a democracy like Australia, you’re supposed to play by the rules.

Picture:Jo-Anna Robinson.

Australian electoral law is intended to guarantee a level playing field; an open and transparent political system that will accurately reflect the will of the voting public.

Yet in last week’s state election in South Australia we saw Labor conducting a centrally orchestrated con job that assailed the very foundations of our democracy.

Latest 2 of 133 comments

  • dcfgyylb says:

    12:18pm | 16/06/12

    jibdnai Links Of London hypwdjw Links Of London Charms crabfjd Links Of London Charms bhexxyl Links Of London fmtinca Links London jiezcdt Links Of London Read more »

  • lobabocaGes says:

    09:46am | 14/06/12

    And they would include an end so that you can a temporary tax cuts enacted from the course of the most important George W. Bush administration furthermore to successfully temporary Obama administration payroll tax reductions. Spending cuts in about self defense as well as the on federal programs were negotiated… Read more »


With My Kitchen Rules coming to an end, news of the return of MasterChef couldn’t have been timelier.

For quality cooking shows, within a few short months, we’ll have gone from a smorgasbord to a piddling entrée. Let’s face it – five minutes of Fast Ed each week is not gonna cut it. 

And if, like me, you’re a regular viewer of Man vs Wild, starring wilderness survival expert, Edward ‘Bear’ Grylls, you’ll have an extra reason to celebrate: you can toast the return of your appetite.

Latest 2 of 25 comments

  • JeremiahBullfrog says:

    09:55am | 01/04/10

    Bear’s kids : Huckleberry and Marmaduke?! Strewth, that should toughen them up! I guess if they get sick of the teasing, they can always adopt new names like dad, e.g. Huckleberry ‘Hound dog’ or Marmaduke ‘Meerkat’ Grylls are two that spring to mind… Read more »

  • Chris says:

    12:12am | 01/04/10

    Coz I reckon Bear would be a bit tough and stringy, John T Read more »


More than eighty years separate the publication of Evelyn Waugh’s first novel and the Tory campaign for government in the British election, but the two are oddly connected.

An artist's recreation of the infamous Bullingdon photo done for the BBC. Cameron is back row second left, with Boris Johnson scowling in the front

The narrative spring that sets ‘Decline and Fall’ in motion is the expulsion from Oxford of its hapless hero, Paul Pennyfeather; and the reason he’s expelled is an act of bullying by the members of something called the Bollinger Club.

They “debag” him (pull down his trousers and pants) and force him to run around the quadrangle. He’s caught, ‘sent down’ as they say at Oxford, and left with no choice but to take a low paying job teaching at a seedy prep school, where his humilations grow steadily worse.

Latest 2 of 12 comments

  • Wombat says:

    06:08pm | 31/03/10

    Right wing Australian = stooge to whatever overlord is available. Even easier. Read more »

  • T.Chong says:

    10:11am | 31/03/10

    Mr Pastry,  all sane people agree about no more Btitish Empire, but please be careful ,because some, like David Flint, Senators Bronny B and Sophie M, and Iron Man Abbott will have an attack of the vapors at such treasonous talk. Read more »


The thing about Alex Chilton is that he was a musician from the south of the United States.

The hardest part of that sentence was to put this brilliant, idiosyncratic, iconoclastic, genius singer, songwriter, musical innovator, guitarist in the past tense.

Chilton died in New Orleans on St Patrick’s Day from a heart complaint. He was on his way to Austin, Texas to play at the South by South West music conference and festival.

Latest 2 of 7 comments

  • Tom says:

    10:07pm | 31/03/10

    Bryan, spot on.. Read more »

  • Bryan says:

    01:54pm | 31/03/10

    Gee, - in the same class as The Beatles - I don’t think that will happen for a long time to come. Grab the entire Beatles albums and go through each of the songs, something like reading a book from cover to cover. And at the end of this magical… Read more »


The ABC drama “Curtin” put into focus the life of John Curtin – one of Australia’s greatest Prime Ministers.

Like so many people, alcohol was Curtin’s greatest challenge. He had grown up around it with his father running several pubs. But it was during his time as the Victorian Secretary of the Timber Workers’ Union that Curtin’s fondness for the demon drink grew into a major disability. According to his biographer David Day: “the culture of the male-dominated union movement was steeped in beer” and Curtin was steeped in the culture.

Suddenly in November 1915 Curtin resigned his post. He went briefly to work for the Australian Workers’ Union and then was appointed the organiser of the anti-conscription campaign being run by the Congress of Australian Trade Unions. The work was stressful and intense and his drinking continued and became worse.

Latest 2 of 19 comments

  • Wombat says:

    07:35pm | 31/03/10

    The denigration of the memory of a great Australian that some have engaged in here is disgraceful. Menzies just wanted Curtin to join a wartime government to solve his own terminal political problems. In the end Menzies even offered to serve under Curtin. Curtin made the correct decision in refusing… Read more »

  • Daniel says:

    07:31pm | 31/03/10

    I think its a real shame that the ideals that Chifley had have not carried over into the current ALP. Its now the Australian Greens that is the only party that is interested in these “true believer” ideals. ALP get with the program and Lindsay Tanner needs to stop attacking… Read more »


With consumers already being let down so badly on grocery issues by Mr Rudd and his Competition Minister Craig Emerson, you’d think that they would do better on basic consumer law issues. Well, you’d be very disappointed as Minister Emerson has presided over a continual watering down of consumer rights in the vital area of unfair contract terms.

Unfair contract terms may prevent the sale of items like this

We know or should know about unfair contract terms. We more commonly know them as the “fine print” in consumer contracts. These are the nasty terms of the contract that stack the contract well and truly in favour of the larger party, commonly a big business. Banks use unfair contract terms as do mobile phone companies. Car hire companies and your local gym also try to stack the contract terms in their favour.

Unfair contract terms are also found in contracts that small businesses may have with larger businesses. Small businesses also deal with banks, mobile phone companies and car hire companies. In this regard, small businesses are also consumers of basic goods and services. Sadly, small businesses can also get hit with unfair contract terms in franchise agreements, retail leases and supply agreements.

Latest 2 of 27 comments

  • H of SA says:

    03:56pm | 01/04/10

    If contracts we’re reasonable to read and undestand, then the number of jobs for lawyers would sink like a stone Read more »

  • Get it Right says:

    11:15pm | 31/03/10

    And you read this article and all of the responses and all you could do was pick on mine? If you have a true opinion, then say something. Bagging out an individual by getting personal and not bringing anything new to the discussion is a pointless exercise - you aren’t… Read more »


Welcome to Wednesday @ The Punch

Harold Wilson won majority vote in the British House of Commons today in 1966.

Latest 2 of 5 comments

  • stephen says:

    01:42pm | 31/03/10

    Newsflash : Ricky Martin is gay, and the Large Hadron Collider has just gone off with a big bang. (No connection). Read more »

  • Floating Norman says:

    12:38pm | 31/03/10

    This fixation with policies - they are just pre-election promises to be changed, forgotten and delayed into oblivion by the winning party.  I am surprised people have such short memories and think party policy stands for something. Must be (heaven forbid0 just party hacks with instructions to try and push… Read more »


Just a hunch, but if a mate ever asks you to snap a pic of them with their favourite high-powered weapon, you might want to reassess your friendship - and possibly call the police.

What do you think gave it away?... Daniel Cowart

As give aways go, snaps such as this one of Daniel Cowart, who’s just pleaded guilty to plotting to kill Barack Obama, are a bit of a no brainer.

Just in case no-one was alarmed by the enormous great gun he’s holding, Cowart helpfully had a Swastika tattooed on his upper arm and shaved his head.

Latest 2 of 86 comments

  • The Greek says:

    05:30pm | 31/03/10

    Where is Zena warrior woman? Read more »

  • matt stewart says:

    03:06pm | 31/03/10

    I took it as “pull your head in”, but I really can’t explain the rest of it. Read more »


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