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by Richard Tonkin on August 22, 2012 - 6:48pm

Apparently Uncle Kev's coming down the pub later to celebrate the expansion cancellation.. as well he should!

by Richard Tonkin on August 22, 2012 - 6:45pm
Sorry to shout..well, postphoned indefinitey, same thing.  I'll put some links up later, but suffice it to say that, as predicted in my piece, the glory days that lay ahead for South Australia have disappeared.
by Michael Talbot-... on August 20, 2012 - 9:32am

It occurs to me to ask why Richard Tonkin was not appointed South Australia's Thinker in Residence, since he's well and truly in residence and not a bad thinker.

And I have to tip my hat to Paul Walter for not dignifying what is merely an advertiser by calling it a newspaper.  The author of "Getting Gold", as 1920s book on gold prospecting in Australia, writes that he always carries medicines with him in tabloid form.

But two things strike me about Adelaide, City of Beggars.  The first is those beggars.  You can hardly walk down KWS without a slightly overweight man, sitting on a bench smoking, calling out and asking if you have any small change because he needs money for a meal.  Or for a bus fare, when he lives a mere hour's walk away.

And I don't mean the same man every time.  The air is thick with them.  One asked me for a few dollars because he needed to make a phone call to New Zealand.  But they are not all New Zealanders, it's just that Adelaide is a city where you beg.  I should say that they are all white, look Anglo. 

And the second, obviously connected, is today's news that an Adelaide taxi driver was assaulted for asking a would-be passenger for his fare in advance. The news item goes on to say that most Adelaide taxi drivers now require advance payment because they are plagued by "runners", passengers who at the end of the trip dive from the taxi and run.  It was claimed that one driver had five runners in one night. 

Something to think about, Thinker.   How was such society created?  What went wrong?  How can it be fixed?

by Paul Walter on August 20, 2012 - 7:22am

Fascinating follow-up to the Foley/ Cleary radio conversation, from ABC economist Peter Martin's site.

He has a follow up interview between himself, the show's host and Mr Foley, in which an understanding of the labarinythine back ground of state versus federal and long term versus short term imperatives, commercialinconfidence etc, are proposed  as necessary to an understanding of what occurred with the Roxby deal.

It seems a major back ground issue the problem of fiscal equalisation involving states and the greater Commonwealth, which may deter negotiants from being willing to extract a larger supply of short term fixed, or longer term profit based, income from big miners.

Martin's interview and his posting may make for interesting consideration in relaiton to your thread. If Foley some how bungled things, we should know andknow why.

Equally, if the background conditions and complexities of economics intersecting with law and state, federal and corporate relations hamstrings people like him, it would be unfair to bag Foley beyond what ever responsibility was his, eg, if the problem is largely systemic. Maybe its just a matter of judgement.

Any way, maybe your economics is better than mine. Why not give Martin's thread and interview, at his site, a listen?

by Paul Walter on August 16, 2012 - 5:30am

The ABC interview with Cleary and Foley's rude atttempt at self promotion struck a chord as to your point involving consultancies and conflict of interest.

Dr Anne Summers had a fine example involving JamesPacker and the gambling industry and NSW ALP Right identities Karl Bitar (hired as a consultant for the Casinos during the pokies debate early in the year) and then-federal Senator Mark Arbib. This is covered in her article; "Dice loaded in clubs battle", 28/1/12, in the Fairfax National Times.

The interference created chaos at a time when Kevin Rudd was preparing his leadership against Gillard and apparently compromised the legislation component intended to protect problem gamblers. 

It surprised me that an outside individual could be allowed to selfishly and delinquently create so much apparent havoc within a fragile government; let alone considering the damage to be done to individuals and their families in future cases of addictive gambling.

by Richard Tonkin on August 14, 2012 - 4:30pm

Regarding Webdiary, Paul.. more info when it comes to hand.

Did you hear Kevin Foley on the radio this morning?  Being accused on ABC-891's Morning show of having done a deal on Roxby that wasn't as good for SA as it could've been, Kev reverted to the bullying, bile-spitting boorish oaf that we've come to know and loathe.  It was a great reminder of how much we're better off not having the likes of him and Atko leading and representing us.

I've been advised by people I trust that Foley's post-office activities will be well worth following.  The old adage that you can tell who someone was worrking for while in government by the first job they take when they leave rings true in Kevin setting up his own consultancy firm so that he can continue to give investors the information he learned as a taxpayer-funded Government Minster, controlling the state's most crucial economic portfolios.  Yep, Foley was working for himself... partly for his multinational Lords and Masters, but mostly for himself.

His consultancy in the new privately-funded Kilkenny TOD makes me wornder how much input he'shad on the government funded one such as the one near us and down the road  at St Clair.  Wonder whether the Kilkenny one's a"tip"?

Speaking of corporate sponsorship, while it was great to see our ex Attorney General on national TV (10's The Project) defending a new McDonalds against local protesters and seeing his efforts fail, do you wonder, given that a supermarket is going to be the main feature of the developed St Clair Recreation Park, who might (in the middle of our new Premier's electorate) be working for Coles?

Anyway, pop the kettle on, settle back and have a listen to this delightful radio segment.

by Paul Walter on August 10, 2012 - 1:29am

I noticed elsewhere that the site could end up closing soon. I thought it had actually happened but have stopped by to read what could be WD's last will and testament and am mightily impressed.

Sorry Richard, but you know yourself only you could have written that thread starter. 

Now, as a South Australian, I have been intrigued by the flatus riddled rhetoric suddenly erupting out of the sole mass circulation newspaper of this town, the tabloid "Advertiser", over recent weeks.

It has been both solemnly and hysterically intoned that the stewardship of current Liberal leader Isobel Redmond is moribund, with the implication that recent times have been a fitful time indeed for the forces of anti socialismunder what must have been be a dreadful woman, indeed. 

Then it occurred to me, as a South Australian vaguely familiar with the Byzantine, pointless machinations of local factional politics, on both sides of the party divide, that some thing else might be afoot.

In fact, what we may be witnessing is a takeover by the secularist Big End Downer faction, now that Labor's tiredness and Redmond's ability to small target herself and her opposition appear to signal the end of three terms of Labor government at the next election.

But Redmond is linked with a third faction, to do with the conservative religious right, with the power brokers figures like Nick Minchin and Iain Evans, a different grouping again to the "small l" Pyne/ Chapman city liberal grouping and Downer's "Big Enders".



Richard's ideal is a bit similar to mine, a vison that cherishes education and rational thinking and science, including with ecology and the (participating) arts, humanities and social sciences rather than puritanism, cheap consumer tabloidism and anti intellectualism driving a dumbed-down community life.

Dunstan's "Athens of the South", a clever example for a clever country.

But the vision of the last forty years has been subsumed, as has the notion of the National Project that writers like Donald Horne proposed, drowned under a morass of neoliberal globalisation, manipulable Tea-party style irrationalism and Ricardian/Malthusian economic rationalism. Australians no longer decide, if they ever did, what happens in their own communities and the nation itself. 

This is decided by the boards of mining giants, huge defence techno formations and and hedge funds with local shopfronts run from Wall St, Washington, Beijing and the City of London.

Our politicians were conned into opening up government and the economy on behalf of these formations, fed as they were on honeyed promises of a future as a techno hub.

Well, it was a good yarn, but it seems now that SA's future as a quarry has been secured and developers have got their hooks into everything else of value, with the complicity of knowing, cynical and conniving politicians. Not much will be left for South Australians, apart from deteriorating material and social infrastructure typified by the new rack and stack inner housing and the wastelands of a once beautiful beach and fertile hills hinterland turned over to monotonous, inefficient Mac housing. 

Culture will survive because, as in "Farenheit 451", many people will see that the current system has nowhere to go, but it is tragic what is being thrown away.

We will be the Athens of the South and like classical Athens we can see the excellenceof a short historical era eventually thrown over on the vanity, hubris and ignorant arrogance of local "leaders" and the barbarians they turned the place over to. 

by Richard Tonkin on August 8, 2012 - 1:59pm

Many thanks, Lisa, for writing this for us.  The original intent of this site was to create an environment where anybody codld record their observations of events going on around them.  These days everyone seems content with talking amongst their own Facebook circles, though to me FB comes a very poor second in terms of possible collective opinion output.  Who knows, maybe enough people willl become so comfortable with writing their thoughts as to produce pieces, poems.. who knows, maybe even books!

I hope that one of those people is you. You have a sharp eye and ear and a flair with the pen.  I look forward to reading more of your work in the future.

To the topic.. It's really only been over the past year that SA public perception of the amount of uranium up there has been allowed.  Before then the mine was always framed as being about the nickel etc.  Even now I don't think folks have got their heads around the geopolitical magnitude of the project.  It's the main reason that Adelaide is being developed and fortified.  After all, do you think superpowers are going to leave such a resource in the hands of we local savages?

There's a side to the Protection Zone that needs further investigation.  I heard someone from the SA Law Society complaining on the ABC that as the 2007 legislation was for the sole purpose of clearing an area of protesters to protect a dignitary (2007 was the year US Chief Warmonger Donny Rumsfeld came to Adeliade, so methinks the law was to protect him from us) the use of such powers to herd protesters from a mine entrance was at best improper and at worst illegal.  When you consider that the Police Minister who invoked the powers is the girfriend of the former A-G who implemented the legislation, somebody should've known better.. and probably did.

by Michael Talbot-... on August 5, 2012 - 2:33pm

Impressed.  Amazed.  I wanted to be a radio amateur myself, started on my first set in childhood but never finished it, never got it built.

And you were right in the middle of it!

And you have just got broadband but have hit the Net like a bombshell!



by Michael Talbot-... on August 5, 2012 - 2:23pm

We need some journalists to write some articles to rescue this site from oblivion.  If it's not already there.

 And I think we need quick moderation to allow live exchanges.  Taking the afternoon off won't do.  But sorry, not me.



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