news bits

  • Labor's radical vision may prove a hard one to sell - Election 2004 - It will be a difficult policy to sell for Labor, mainly because it is complex and a radical repositioning of the principles of school funding. I disagree - how the fuck is this complex? Labor wants to take money from the 67 richest private schools—we're talking about schools which charge more than $12,000 per year, per student—and give it to the poorer schools, while also increasing funding for public education. What is complex about that? Howard is an elitist fuck who knows he and his family will never need publich health or education, and it shows in his policies. Meanwhile people are arguing that Labor's policy is 'penalising parents' for paying for private schools - actually, that's only the case if they are being massively charged by the school they choose. Private schools with lower fees don't get funding taken off them. So actually this is putting pressure on schools to lower fees to keep the government funding.
  • Our broadband shame - Perspectives - : Two generations ago the entire Korean peninsula was one of the poorest places on earth, today the south at least, is one of the richest countries. And on one measure, internet connectivity, it is streets ahead of anywhere else. ... Compare South Korea's experience to Australia's. We have dropped in rank in levels of broadband penetration in each of the past five years, and are now ranked 21st in the OECD. Thank you, Mr Alston. Thank you, Telstra. Australia's flagship broadband products are still measuring downloads in megabytes-per-month, charged massively or shaped down to modem speeds after that despite huge setup fees and high monthly costs (abysmal value for money). The automotive equivalent would be to have everyone buying Model T Fords at $50,000 a pop.
  • | Man held for entering lion's den (September 15, 2004): [L]ions growled and snarled as a man scaled the fence of their enclosure at Melbourne Zoo yesterday. Crowd should have chanted: "Darwin! Darwin! Darwin!"
  • | Bird flies to wrong continent (September 15, 2004). "'Instinct' my feathered arse!" said the pissed-off starling.


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