Thursday, 30 April 2009


The motel radio comes on at 6am just as Fran Kelly’s voice promos her breakfast show. Apparently we’re one level short of a pandemic – not an issue out here.

The further west you go the saner the world gets.

I’ve ordered breakfast at seven, so there’s time for a shower and some reports, but I’m on autopilot at this hour, and I’ll need to check carefully anything I write.

This motel room is a bit unusual in that it has a back door and a back yard – sort of. There is a row of palms planted out there, anachronistic for me this far west as I always associate palms with the beach.

It’s a nice touch, but you can still hear the trucks as they roar past at all hours out front. I open the unit door to begin loading files and computer into the wagon and the chill hits me like a cold sponge.

The lineup of travellers’ cars is changing these days. Instead of the Commodores and Falcons that once were the go, you’re seeing diesel SUVs, medium sized cars and diesel vans. The bloke in the unit next to mine is packing a diesel Mondeo. I’d kill for a coffee, but am feeling too lazy to brew something up from what’s available in the room, so I’ll wait for breakfast. In any case, breakfast coffee will be brewed.

A seven thirty start will be OK, as I’ve got 3 hours on the road, and that will get me to the school in good time to meet the parents of the student I’m supporting at 10.30. Besides I’m heading vaguely east, and don’t relish driving into the rising sun at the beginning of this trip – too many stock transports which always leads to a dirty windscreen.

This would not be a good journey to take in the MX5 with the top down.

It looks like it’s going to be a beautiful day.

Monday, 27 April 2009

Blowing the Whistle

There's plenty of faux hysteria being generated in the mainstream media lately about refugee boats.

It's refreshing therefore to read a more measured response in the Catholic Leader.

This newspaper doesn't, of course, have to rely on screaming headlines to sell papers. Generally, they're bought by people attending mass on Sunday morning.

Worth repeating is this:

Edmund Rice Centre spokesman Fr Claude Mostowik said the term “border protection” was “too often used as a weapon against extremely vulnerable people escaping life threatening situations”.

The so-called christians screaming blue murder have almost blown the pea from their whistle.

The level of debate around this issue hasn't improved since the days of the "yellow hordes" or the "red peril".

Hugh White - Without America

Hugh White is always provocative, and doesn't pull any punches when it comes to criticising current defence policy. In 1995, he was appo...