Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Dirty Harry and the detainee from Afghanistan

Underneath the hard copy headline "Inmates sent potty", they had a photo of a man with 200,000 bees on him (a close up of this photo). The photo was not of a detainee being interrogated, but someone trying to set a world record. A bit of poor placement by the Daily Telegraph.

More fictitions to follow.

GUANTANAMO BAY: US military guards are taking extraordinary new measures to make terror suspect detainees confess at the controversial Camp X-Ray base in Cuba.

Camp X-Ray was closed on July 29 2002.

The use of the word "confess" implies that the guards just want the jihadis to confirm what they are saying to them, like a bent cop wanting to wrap up a case. Who knows, maybe they're more interested in gathering new intelligence about the known unknowns and unknown unknowns? No other articles in google news used the word "confess" with regards to the use of Harry Potter books.

Interrogrators at the base where Australian David Hicks is held are spending hours reading Harry Potter books to the inmates in an effort to crack them.

Is an "interrogrator" an interrogator who uses the technique of grating on the detainee?

I'd expect to see this level of inaccuracy in broadsheets like the New York Times or the Sydney Morning Herald, but in a tabloid? What is the world coming to?

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Poor journalism reigns in Reuters

From Reuters:

Friday's vote exposed deep class divisions in the oil-producing nation of 67 million people.

Ahmadinejad's humble lifestyle and pledges to tackle corruption and redistribute the country's oil wealth have appealed to the urban and rural religious poor.


In wealthier north Tehran, Rafsanjani voters said they feared Ahmadinejad would reverse modest reforms made under Khatami that allow women to dress in brighter, skimpier clothes and couples to fraternise in public without fear of arrest.

Yeah. The "conservative" won because of stupid red-staters. Nothing to do with the thousand-odd candidates blocked by the regime.

I don't know much about Iranian "politics", but generally the strongest supporters of fundamentalism are rich and university-educated. But the media wouldn't make things up, would they?

Don't answer that.

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Life imitates Clarke and Dawe

7:30 report December 2004:

INTERVIEWER: OK, now we'll just try that again in case you're rolled, Mr Latham, OK?

When do you think you'll get into government?

MARK LATHAM: Look, Bryan, I mean, the Prime Minister is a low-life little skunk.

He doesn't mind misrepresenting the position to the electorate at large and I think if the absolute galahs and dopes who've tipped me out of office are not Prime Minister by Easter, they should bloody well give the game away.


Mr Latham, whose political biography is due out later this week, is said to have written off the Federal Labor Party as a "spent force" ...

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Tuesday, June 14, 2005


What I Did On My Holidays

In February (plus a few days in January and March), I went around the world.


Steam driven clock
H R McMillan Space Centre
Science World British Columbia
Harbour Centre Tower
Stanley Park (including the "girl in the wetsuit")

Notes: The Steam driven clock can "chime", and was built only a few decades ago. I learnt at the Storyeum of the Doukhobors, who bombed and stripped naked for their pacifist ideals. Sounds somewhat familiar. Everyone in the Storyeum photos looked very serious, even the hurdy gurdy girls.


Skied and snowboarded


Space Needle
Seattle Aquarium
Seattle Underground Tour

Notes: Not all seals form harems, and some species of octopus stop eating after reproducing and look after their offspring until they die. The underground tour is great, though not recommended for those with delicate sensibilities.


Canada Olympic Park
Calgary Tower
Glenbow museum

Notes: You can go up one of the ski jumps. As well as magnificent views, they have information on ski jumping. Apparently it's safer than it looks, and for most of the flight you're only a few metres above the ground. Canada Olympic Park saw the Olympic debut of Michael Edwards ("Eddie the Eagle") and the Jamaican bobsled team, and last year it saw the debut of Australia's women's skeleton team. Skeleton is for those who like going at over 100 kilometres an hour, but think going feet first (like lugers do) is entirely too sensible.


Cross country skiing

Notes: The cars stop for you if you want to cross the road!


Hockey Hall of Fame
Whistle Brewery
CN Tower
Royal Ontario Museum
Bata shoe museum
Toronto Olympic Spirit Museum

Notes: For the Whistle Brewery, instead of paying an admission fee, you have to buy a souveneir. At the Royal Ontario Museum, you can buy replicas of some of the exhibits. I bought a replica of a painted relief from the tomb of Metjetji (spelling may vary). The Toronto Olympic Spirit Museum had information, photo opportunities and sports practice.

Washington, D.C.

Smithsonian museums
United States Botanic Garden

Notes: While waiting for a tour of the capitol, I visited the United States Botanic Garden, and saw a Wollemi pine. Not bad, considering that about a decade ago, it only existed undiscovered in a single area a few hours from Sydney.

New York

Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum
Katz's Deli
The former World Trade Centers 1 & 2


The Tower of London

Bergen, Norway

Hanseatic Museum
Fishing museum

Notes: I took the "Norway in a Nutshell" trip from Bergen to Oslo. The scenery was amazing.

Oslo, Norway

Hollenstein ski jump and museum
Oslo town hall
Fram museum

Notes: The Fram had gone further north and further south than any other boat. The museum also had an exhibit on Australian Antarctic bases. On the flight I took from Oslo to Copenhagen, the TVs showed the plane's-eye view of the take-off.

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Thursday, June 09, 2005


Bring back the blog

Welcome to Bullletin readers, Tim Blair viewers, and long-suffering souls waiting for my next post.

It'll happen real soon now, and it'll be on What I Did On My Holidays.

For those who wish to email me, take my 6-letter pseudonym, add on an "at sign" and then geocities.com. If you don't get a reply, it may be because of the anti-spam filter: send it again and give me a shout in the comments section that you've sent an email.

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