Thursday, June 28, 2007

I have read the Impact Assessment and I am satisfied that, given the available evidence, it represents a reasonable view of the likely costs, benefits and impact of the leading options …

We are living longer, with higher incomes, better standards of housing, marrying less, Hinduism is growing. The average age in Australia is 37 years old, compared to 34 in 1996.
The most common family type is a couple with children. The average number of children living in a couple family with children under 15 is 2.16. Nine out of ten couple families with young children live in a separate house with an average of four bedrooms. Almost two-thirds of these families are paying off a mortgage. China (~96,000), and India (~70,000) We're richer, more diverse but deeper in debt: Census

Can we change the heart of politics? Targeting a Tax Dodge
Private-equity funds are the new moneybags of the capitalist system. When companies want a cash infusion or a new ownership structure, the first place they look these days is not the marketplace but rather these huge pools of cash.

That status has also made them suspect. Whenever anything gets too big or too rich in America, it usually has a target painted on its back. Bringing the wealthy and the powerful down a notch is an age-old tradition in a country enamored with the underdog.
Therein lies one reason that the congressional tax-writing committees are considering a proposal to end a little-known tax break, called carried interest, that has allowed financiers who run private-equity firms and hedge funds to cut their income tax bills by billions of dollars a year. The tax rule involved (it is actually not a law) has allowed fund managers to pay the capital gains tax rate of 15 percent instead of the ordinary top income tax rate of 35 percent. Taking away that benefit would raise tens of billions of dollars that Congress could then use to fund other, humbler services. It will not be easy for the private-equity funds to cry poverty as a defense.

Magicians with No Clothes; Private equity dispatches lobbyist army [Tom Herman gives a nice plug to TaxProf Blog in today's Wall Street Journal: Tax geeks HMRC is one of the first Government departments to launch podcasts, designed to make information on some of the most wide-ranging issues simple and accessible. The podcasts are between three and four minutes' duration, offering advice, support and helpful hints in a conversational style. Another podcast also launches today, discussing topical issues relating to the tax profession Employers turn to their iPods as tax deadline looms ]
• · It is truth that liberates, not your effort to be free ... When You Allegedly Cheat on Taxes, the Terrorists Win Eternal vigilance the price of freedom; September 11, 2001 has been linked to a number of criminal activities and now we can add tax fraud to the list. Tax Girl Power
• · MAKE no mistake: the gloves are off in Canberra and the election campaign is on. All that remains is for John Howard to name the day of the prize fight. Unlike the US, Britain, Canada and other democracies, Australia has no full-time watchdog organisation that fights against government secrecy. Heat's on Howard to jemmy open the vaults ; Australians are reported to be the most technology savvy nationality in the world. We have an insatiable desire for anything new be it the DVD, mobile phones, plasma and LCD TVs, iPods, PDAs, broadband and wireless technology Gov site ; Those towns are rich sources of stories. Everyone knows everything, and everyone wants to know everything. Real life is messy. Fiction refines it to a form that we can get some meaning out of. Sometimes I think we are just a bag of stories with flesh wrapped around Soul Drain
• · · All Things Considered· The man British authorities charged with poisoning former KGB officer Alexander Litvinenko has responded with his own accusations I was framed by MI6, says ex-KGB spy ; Expectations were not high when Tony Fitzgerald, QC, was appointed 20 years ago to inquire into allegations of illegal activities within the police force and in high places. Queensland had lived through inquiries before with minimum effect on the way of life.
Fitzgerald put light on dark system
; This chamber resonates with the power of its accumulated memory. The plaques and the furnishings and the carpets, the smell of leather, the geographic expression of power and vying for power. How fortunate a Premier would be who could choose from the array of talent assembled the length, incongruously, of the Opposition frontbench. It’s lovely to see three generations of the Knowles. As, surely, it is right buried out of sight at the back is Ted Mack, the only independent who chose to come this day. He would not have sat anywhere else. The electorate builds so much of its impression of the functioning of democracy
• · · · THE Government of the ACT has now entered the complacency phase. It is a political danger faced by any government going beyond its first term A wake up call came at the recent Annual Report Awards by the Institute of Public Administration (IPAA). The outcomes of these awards ought to have embarrassed the ACT Government in the extreme. Hold the smugness, there’s no time for complacency; Fairfax Digital has strengthened its ties with Google, announcing an expanded relationship that will include a rollout of Google's AdWords text advertisements across the media company's network of websites. Photos and Books before bullets
• · · · · Good Web connection, bad connection, no connection? No problem. Google Gears software will allow users to run Web applications from any location A sea change for the Internet ; A man described as one of the world's most prolific spammers was arrested, and US authorities said computer users across the Web could notice a decrease in the amount of junk email Uber-spammer's arrest hardly making dent on spam volume
• · · · · · A study of Google’s most recently filed quarterly balance sheet provides some interesting insights. Of its gross assets of about $20 billion, almost $12 billion represent cash, cash equivalents and investments. Other assets on the balance sheet comprise property and equipment at $2.8 billion, non-marketable equity securities at $1.5 billion, and other assets at $3.7 billion. Yet the marketplace tells us that Google is richly endowed with assets that are not on its balance sheet e.g. intellectual, informational and other intangible assets! If the $20 billion book value shown by the balance sheet was replaced by the approximate $150 billion market value that analysts have reckoned, the $130 billion gap is presumed to reflect the intellectual, informational and other intangible properties embedded in the company – but not reflected by the bookkeepers. Google’s quarterly balance sheet ; Long Tail of Google

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Write true. Write on … On a freezing day in Sydney, you can see your emotion from … the land of Forever. Our Homesickness! that long
exposed weariness! It's all the same to me now where I am altogether lonely
Somehow we are not allowed to enter the same cold river twice, and perhaps we can never quite go home. If you insist, all kind of treachery may await you. Yes, we all know that and most of us know better than to try reclaiming what seems lost forever. What has set Australia apart from the rest of the world, what once made it the stuff of fairy-tales for many prospective migrants, is growing harder and harder to find and to hang on to …This makes me feel unaccountably shy, but I've, errr, been lucky to get the Media Dragon millions of click-through traffic thanks to Six Degree of separation inside the solstice ;-) National Necessities: Death and Taxes and Trouble of Cold River

Deron Doulas gives independent publishers a voice and support in an industry dominated by large publishers. He is the right person for the time in creating a global literary vision. Deron Douglas, of DDP Publishing

In Sydney artistic talent emerges in all kinds of places Czech out cellists curated by Nadya Neklioudova who is based at Darling Harbour in Sydney Galleries: Vencent Ko artwork

Rhythm, half-rhyme, cadence, stirring imagery, metaphor Torn between two lovers, in life and art: MD can never have enough creative friends. Can We?
Sydney writes itself off

Cowering in our McMansions, huddled around our fridge magnets
Today, we don't need sticks and shadows. Instead, we have watches 'First we rode on the sheep's back, then we 'industrialised', then we diversified into services (which seemed smart at the time). But does the phrase 'The world's quarry' ring a bell?'

Slavic Bells; [ The Great American Pitchfest is like speed dating for the Hollywood business crowd. It’s where writers with ideas meet people with resources and an impressive number of love affairs have blossomed. “For many writers, gaining access to industry insiders is very difficult, even if they live right in Los Angeles,” explains Bob Schultz, a Pitchfest organizer. “As the only pitching event created by screenwriters for screenwriters, we take tremendous pride in opening those doors for aspiring writers.” Film Fuss: You have a lot of work ahead of you; Inspirational Owners: June 2007]
• · The San Diego Union Tribune will be the latest newspaper to "adjust the way we're presenting book coverage," according to senior editor, special sections Chris Lavin. Those changes "will both improve and broaden our coverage of books," Lavin insists, though agent Sandy Dijkstra has circulated an e-mail warning that the paper is turning its Sunday book review section into two pages within the entertainment section after June 24 ad will cut reviews by half. Lavin says that information "is not complete or accurate" and indicates the changes will be announced to readers within the paper Another book review section to fold?; MySpace, Sony To Launch Classic TV
• · Adventures in old-time bookselling - If I can prove to a publisher that a 1,000-square-foot bookstore in a suburb of Boston can presell an entire print run before it's released, then maybe American publishers will take a second look Store Pre-Sells Local Author's Novel ; Legendary Writer Retires: Dillard’s Done; How to kill a book, in 3 easy steps
• · · Last week a new book was published about Brian Clough called Provided You Don't Kiss Me: 20 Years with Brian Clough by Duncan Hamilton…this book goes places no other sports book has ever been. It describes a huge personality, a man with god given gifts and a man flawed in every way… Remember Brian Clough; ACTOR and director Richard E.Grant is happy to enunciate what he believes others think of him. His memoir about the fraught production of his directing debut, the very autobiographical Wah-Wah, is not quite literature. Wah Wah
• · · · 77 William used to be nightclub I loved ... The Italians are passionate people. You can feel it in their stare, hear it in their voice and taste it. Founding a dynasty of restaurateurs is enough of a legacy in itself, but Mario Percuoco has a greater claim to fame: he was the man who transformed Sydney's attitude to antipasto. Corado and Salvadore might dispute that claim as it was their father who taught Mario how to make it at 77 William Street. Corado tells me that Leo Schofield , nephew of George Dorman, of SMH review fame made his father’s restaurant Arrivederci popular …. Mr Percuoco knew at least 500 permutations of antipasto, such as eggplant parmigiana, minted zucchini, roast capsicum with anchovies, onion frittata and octopus in lemon juice. In 1973, he introduced a giant antipasto table at Arrivederci in William Street, East Sydney, then at La Zagara in Norton Street, Leichhardt. Pioneer of Italian restaurants always upped the antipasto ; Grab an outdoor stool at Bar Luigi Coluzzi in Darlinghurst as it celebrates 1957-2007 golden anniversary My morning Coffee Buzz
• · · · · Evening Buzz on Library Thing; China buys Google ;-)
• · · · · · Body found at Darling Harbour ING of Mysterious Affair ; Crystallized experience John Prine WAR CHEST: Mountains of cash continue to roll in to managed funds

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Without truth ... Freedom dies! It drowns!

The past few days have seen the legal system serve up yet another vivid illustration of the depressing state of free speech in Australia. On Friday the former public servant Allan Kessing copped a nine-month suspended jail sentence for his crime of leaking reports to a newspaper about the chaotic state of security at Sydney Airport. Yesterday two journalists joined him in the ranks of the criminal class when Chief Judge Michael Rozenes, in Victoria's County Court, ordered convictions be recorded against Melbourne Herald Sun staffers Michael Harvey and Gerard McManus, and fined them $7000 each. They were convicted of contempt of court, but their crime was doing their jobs by telling the public what was really going on, rather than feeding them the spin-doctored version of events the Government had cooked up. Their story, published in the newspaper in 2004, embarrassed the Government, humiliated the then minister for veterans' affairs, Dana Vale, and provided another reason why the Australian media have formed a Right to Know coalition to lobby for changes to the law. If shield laws won't protect journalists such as Harvey and McManus from reporting public service leaks, you have to wonder what value they really have Truth comes at a high price Source:

Media Dragons V Spinners When the Press Fails…
Interview Week at Assignment Zero: Anna Haynes is Questioning SusanG of Daily Kos

PressThink's readers know more than one contributor does. So what follow-up questions do you have for SusanG? Here she speaks of "the fellowship that comes with collaboration in a country where many feel isolated and cut off from the truth. Impossible for any editor of a commercial newspaper to understand the difference between a profit system in collapse, driving the State and everybody in it to bankruptcy, and a system of production for use in process of growth, providing security and plenty for all. I used to say to our audiences: It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it!

The Trolley Of Truth; [When thousands of us get together to investigate how the campaigns are operating in all of our communities, we can piece together a moving picture of American politics that’s more complete than anything the mainstream news has ever been able to consider. Sounds like the intellectual diversity of a typical newsroom already, doesn’t it? ; The Thinking Professor – Jay Rosen ]
• · Among the greatest challenges facing the American democracy is the struggle to recover the soul of the American press. Legions of critics and off-duty journalists are searching for answers to why it is so difficult to be independent and get stories straight. Why is it so hard to resist the ever-present spin of those in power? One reason I’m in hot water is because my colleagues and I at NOW didn’t play by the conventional rules of Beltway journalism. Those rules divide the world into Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, and allow journalists to pretend they have done their job if, instead of reporting the truth behind the news, they merely give each side an opportunity to spin the news. Spinning the News; Vise D A The Google Story: Inside the Hottest Business, Media and Technology of Our Time Macmillan 2006 ISBN: 9780330440059 Price: $24.95 The Google search engine, with its ability to produce hundreds of speedy responses to searches on virtually everything and anything, has woven itself into the fabric of our everyday lives. The Google Story: Inside Media Dragon;
• · · I've found myself more and more wary of doing things that I'd like to do with Google applications simply out of some primal, lizard brain fear of giving too much control of my data to one source. It's not that I don't trust Google, it's not that I don't like the applications, it's that I'm worried they might fall to some ill use, out of the control of the current brand as I've come to understand it today. Big Brother Google: Battelle Fights The Power; R.R. Bowker Acquires Medialab Solutions, Developer of AquaBrowser Library creators of a library search and discovery platform called the AquaBrowser Library, which they say is used by more than 60 million public library patrons. Library Search Platform
• · · · Speaking of libraries, the LAT highlights the University of California Riverside's 110,000-volume Eaton collection of science fiction, fantasy and horror books --"the world's largest and a necessary trek for scholars. In a university not far away, sci-fi heaven; ADD-Asshole driven development … The madness of “methodologies” in IT …
• · · · · The popularity of radio has captured the attention of the online community. John Laws has confirmed his retirement from radio after more than 50 years in front of the microphone on air later this morning. Laws, known as the "Golden Tonsils" of Australian radio, has worked on air since the 1950s, and at one point was the most-listened to broadcaster in Australia. Golden Tonsils ; The First YouTube Election - Los Angeles Times It's easier than ever to spread political propaganda online, but it's also easier than ever to get caught.
• · · · · · Once upon a time, there was no such thing as YouTube--people didn't obsessively watch the net Colour plays an important part in product recognition by bloggers ; Much of next year's US election will be fought on the web. It's the YouTube election

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Charles and Media Dragon agree with Clive James who spoke tonight about the reasons why he likes to sign books as an author. No bookseller will accept the signed books back ;-) Nicki Lauder was quoted in Clives’ presentation at 39 Reservoir Street Sydney as saying that to win is go go as slowly as you can in order to win ;-) Ach, and Bush is the first of USA whose English is the Second Language. People who he ranks highly were Peter Cook and Barry Humphries (sic)

Charles Bali is a preacher as well as practicer in all kinds of areas. He carries several colourful hats: a lawyer, an accountant, a lecturer and in their shadows he has penned a number of useful stories which are peppered with useful cases. Czech out (sic) Concise Guide to Understanding Commercial Law 1 (2003), 2nd edition and Australian Commercial Law in Perspective (2006)
Australian Commercial Law in Perspective is a text which has been uniquely designed for Accounting, Business, Management and Law students alike as well as for practitioners. It provides the reader with a comprehensive and easy to understand approach in appreciating the mechanisms of law which has an impact on business, commercial and industrial issues encountered. BALI: Leagle PublicationsLeagle Publications

Law of Commerce Eternal Complexity of KISS
Concise guide to understanding commercial law 1 / Charles J. Bali. Bondi Junction, N.S.W. : Charles Bali, 2000. Description: 200 p. ; ISBN: 0646400487 (pbk.)

Record Id: 41218962 (Australian Library Collections) Title: Australian commercial law in perspective.
Published: Bondi Junction, N.S.W. : Leagle Publications, 2006-
Description: v. ; 25 cm.
Dewey Number: 346.9407
Notes: Below title: C.J. Bali.
Journal Dates: 1st ed. (2006)-
Frequency: Annual
Subjects: Commercial law -- Australia -- Periodicals.
Other Authors: Bali, Charles J.
346.9407 AUS 1st ed. (2006)-

Record Id: 24826315 (Australian Library Collections) Author: Bali, Charles J.
Title: Concise guide to understanding commercial law 1 / Charles J. Bali.
Edition: 2nd ed.
Published: Bondi Junction, N.S.W. : C. Bali, 2003.
Description: xxvii, 443 p. ; 25 cm.
ISBN: 0646424858
Dewey Number: 346.9407

• National Library and Law collection Remember to Type in Charles Bali and the number of libraries who hold the books is huge; [CODA: Whether intentionally or not, law firm websites and acts of parliaments create great jokes.
Web Watch: Laughing at Lawyers and the Law ; Bali books on Google ]

Monday, June 18, 2007

Our expectations of technology are borne out of Cold War spin.
The community-building projects of the digital world are celebrated for the abundance they make it possible to access and share; but what if the culture of a community only arises from jointly endured constraints?

Ivory Towers
T he internet disorganizes information for you, so you can organize it for yourself — alone or with friends. That is the distilled essence of David Weinberger’s theory about how we create meaning and understanding for ourselves in these times …

From the Journal of Public Deliberation, Alison Kadlec and Will Friedman (Public Agenda): Deliberative Democracy and the Problem of Power; David M. Ryfe (Nevada): Toward a Sociology of Deliberation; Peter Levine (Maryland) Rose Marie Nierras (Sussex): Activists’ Views of Deliberation; Renée A. Daugherty and Sue E. Williams (OSU): Applications of Public Deliberation: Themes Emerging from Twelve Personal Experiences Emanating from National Issues Forums Training

Wisdom to Governance; [The network society may ultimately lead to information overload, triviality, and loneliness Lost in Space; It's better in the flesh]
• · Law enforcement cannot stop spam with periodic high-profile busts, or with sentences greater than those received by rapists or murderers. Unfortunately, there's no quick fix, and we should search for something other than these symbolic incarcerations. Free the Spam King!; Internet spammers are creative, but so are the people devoted to catching them Scamming the Spammers: ; New Skype package threatens telcos Skype offers cheap-as-chips local calls
• ·Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder. Weinberger was also a co-author of the notorious boom-era best seller, The Cluetrain Manifesto How the Internet Disorganizes Everything; Despite its robust appearance, more than 10 percent of the internet flickers out like a candle every day, according to researchers who unveiled on Wednesday an experimental tool that probes the network's dark places. Researchers Chart Internet's 'Black Holes'
• · · An employee who scrupulously followed the company's own ethics guidelines may find herself out of a job Wal-Mart's Latest Ethics Controversy
• · · · Webbys for lonelygirl15 YouTube Oscars of the Internet ;
• · · · · To speak behind others' back is a ventilation of the heart. The mythical bohemian, liberated both from the workaday world and bourgeois sexual hang-ups, is a seductive myth we have bought into as whole-heartedly as we have that of romantic love Single Life: I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness; It's time to talk about the birds and the bees. It Takes One To Tango

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Today I promise that I won't procrastinate: i.e., dawdle, delay, habitually put off doing something that should be done. Instead I will create: i.e., to bring into being; cause to exist; make, produce. What I mean is that I will write.
I won't clean out my purse-- even though it's full of old gum wrappers, slips of scribbled notes, shopping lists, and old make-up I never use because I'm always home in front of my computer.

Wild weather lashed Sydney and Keating puts heat on Labor and everyone is enjoying the Sydney Film Festival. In NSW I served the English Queen, but the film about serving the King is hugely enjoyable story whose first hour is engrossing to the point of ridiculousness. Obsluhoval jsem Anglickeho Krale; The first of the books about Alexander Litvinenko, DEATH OF A DISSIDENT BY Alex Goldfarb and Marina Litvinenko, lands Litvinenko Tried to Come to US

Writing It Real: Creating Poems from Life Experience.

It was not my original intent to spend so much time drinking at the Iceberg bar. In fact, it happened quite by accident.

I was in a state of flux... After my divorce, I found myself floundering around a bit. (Kind of like those whales that try to commit suicide on the beach. And everyone tries to push them back in the water, but they keep swimming back up on the sand.)

In my divorced state of mind, I began reading romance novels. The kind with words like “thrusting,” “bulging,” and “engorged.” I kept stacks of them piled next to my bed. And sopped up every word like chicken soup. I’m not ashamed of it; I craved romance. To me, raw sex in a dewy meadow was a fairy tale band-aid.

So how does an author end up with a romantic comedy book entitled: The Men’s Guide to the Women’s Bathroom? It seems like a trite twist of fate and although it’s taken me awhile to adjust, I’ve swallowed my pill. I know now that I’m not meant to have Fabio pose for my cover.

I’m not meant to stand among the Titans of bodice ripping fiction. I’m not meant to have Dave Eggers ringing me at all hours of the night to say, “I wrote A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius,” to which I’d reply, “Well, I wrote The Greatest Love Story of all Time.” To which he’d reply, “Yes, I’ve heard about you. I want you to join a club for American Novelists. We meet at Starbuck’s on Wednesday nights. Tom Wolfe will be there, so get there early, because he eats all the poppy seed muffins.”

No. My fate lies not in The Greatest Love Story of all Time, but among my fellow sisters-in-arms. In a place we all know and love. The inner sanctum. The Women’s Bathroom. It’s been said by people smarter than me, the first rule of thumb is to “Write What You Know.” Thus, many novelists write stories based on their own lives. They create characters similar to themselves with each bittersweet detail revealing the complex fabric of their American experience. I have to admit that the fabric of my American experience was somewhat, well, plain. I’d grown up in Texas and gone to public school. (Could I pen a tearjerker about Budweiser keg parties and cheese Doritos?)
If only I’d climbed Mount Everest…won the Tour de France after beating cancer… fished the waters off Gloucester, Massachusetts in a tiny boat during a perfect storm.
If only I was Hillary Clinton…

'If' by rrdayud kipilng
If you can keep yuor haed wehn all aobut you
Are lnsiog thiers and bianmlg it on you,
If you can turst yusrleof wehn all men dbout you,
But mkae alanowlce for tehir duontbig too;
If you can wiat and not be tierd by wntiaig,
Or bineg leid auobt, don't dael in leis,
Or benig htead, don't gvie way to hiatng,
And yet don't look too good, nor tlak too wsie:
If you can darem - and not mkae dmaers yuor msater,
If you can tihnk - and not mkae ttghhous yuor aim;
If you can meet wtih Tpumirh and Dtseasir
And traet thsoe two iortmspos jsut the smae;
If you can baer to haer the trtuh you've spoekn
Tesiwtd by kevnas to mkae a tarp for floos,
Or wtcah the tinhgs you gvae yuor lfie to, breokn,
And sotop and bluid 'em up wtih wron-out tolos:
If you can mkae one haep of all yuor wininngs
And rsik it all on one trun of ptich-and-tsos,
And lsoe, and sratt aiagn at yuor bniiggnens
And nveer baerth a wrod aoubt yuor lsos;
If you can froce yuor hraet and nrvee and sniew
To svree yuor trun lnog afetr tehy are gnoe,
And so hlod on wehn trehe is nhontig in you
Epxcet the Wlil whcih syas to tehm: "Hlod on!"
If you can tlak wtih crdwos and keep yuor vturie,
Or wlak wtih kngis - nor lsoe the cmmoon tcuoh,
If nheeitr feos nor liovng fdriens can hrut you,
If all men cunot wtih you, but nnoe too mcuh;
If you can flil the uigrnonvfig mnuite
Wtih stxiy snceods' wotrh of dinstace run,
Yuros is the Etrah and envyeirthg taht's in it,
And - whcih is mroe - you'll be a Man, my son!
Rrdayud Kipilng

Monday, June 11, 2007

And I would have to say that the indispensable Wood S Lot does a far better job of curating the internets than anyone one else I know of. Far better than moi! Media Dragon Bergin uses the opening pages of The Great Gatsby to illustrate another secret of a good presentation. 'Gatsby turned out all right in the end,' writes F. Scott Fitzgerald, answering the novel’s central question before we’ve even had a chance to ask it, and not diminishing our interest in the subject one jot. Bergin sometimes really hammers the point home. In his opening remarks, he’ll say: 'And if there’s one thing I want you to remember after you leave, it’s this ... ', a remark that other presenters usually leave to the end. In the May, 2007 Harper’s is an article by Gideon Lewis-Kraus entitled “A World in Three Aisles: Browsing the Post-Digital Library” on a couple of rogue librarians, Rick Prelinger and Megan Shaw Prelinger. They believe that “the conflict between a so-called digital culture and a so-called print culture is fake; they think we should stop celebrating or lamenting the discontinuous story of how the circuits will displace the shelves, and start telling a continuous story about how the two might fit together” (47).
I did like this part, too: There’s a tour of real librarians and one of them asks a dangerous question:
…Megan picked up a bound volume of Display World magazine and told the group … was a particular attraction for the artists and art classes who have come in search of visual materials. One librarian … didn’t quite get it. ‘Well, I can see how it would be interesting to artists,’ he asked, ‘but how do they find it?’”
Megan, whose overwhelming kindness occasionally reveals truculent edges, looked at him as thought his was the stupidest question ever asked at the library. ‘We show them,’ she said, and moved on.”
Hey, it’s her private library, she can be as much of a control freak as she wants. Because, really, isn’t the history of modern librarianship or whatever its called focused on access? Librarians are there to help you find stuff, but moreover, they’re there to teach you the tools to find stuff. The private Prelinger Library is a nice exercise in an inaccessible collection with Rick and Megan, who strike me as the kind of people I would run from at full speed, set up as givers of knowledge. How esoteric. How Gurdjieffian. How nice for them.

Apart, of course, from computers, comfy chairs, and good coffee. Why (and how) I blog
Internet archivist Rick Prelinger sez, "Harper's Magazine's Gideon Lewis-Kraus spent a lot of time with us and wrote a smart (and kind) piece about Prelinger Library and where he thinks it's pointing."
Rick Prelinger and Megan Shaw Prelinger, experimental amateur librarians...think the conflict between a so-called digital culture and a so-called print culture is fake; they think we should stop celebrating, or lamenting, the discontinuous story of how the circuits will displace the shelves, and start telling a continuous story about how the two might fit together.

Aren’t bloggers, for example and after all, little but pajama’d isolates?
The river of the world runs through the actual, by the academy, and even into the virtual. All are on the same bank. They are, in this sense, all one and the same.

Library as Place-With-Books ; [This is a great piece -- and the Prelinger Archive is amazing. Harper's Magazine on the Prelinger Archive ; Telling tales at work, Janet Holmes, Management (New Zealand), May 2007, pp.36-38. The low down on gossip – though typically overlooked, marginalised and erased from the official record, tales told in the workplace can help build a productive workplace environment. Recent research shows that a story can serve a variety of work related purposes. Stories about domestic events and exciting escapades are often told and retold as part of ongoing social talk within an organisation; they become part of the shared repertoire of work teams. Rick]
• · ; Blogging and libraries
• · This goes with the territory Great Writers are better at saying what’s wrong with our own stories than at telling us how to make their stories right ; Rich Dad Poor Dad 7 Secrets For Making Your Book a New York Times Best Seller
• · · From online personals for 'friends with benefits' to illicit blogs and even an electronic 'poke' ... It started with a click; How did critics' scourge Andrew Frost become the new face of ABC arts? Bad-boy blogger now Aunty's favourite
• · · · It was a week we travelled to Czechoslovakia with Sasha and Bella. A months of floods on Morava River. While in US it must have been June 4 or 5, 1997, because Buckley's body had floated down the Wolf River in Tennessee for a week after he went for his last swim on the evening of May 29. That's one hell of a legacy; Stephen King continues to experiment with serialization, as Esquire announced that their July issue (on newsstands today) carries a 21,000-word novella, THE GINGERBREAD GIRL, in its entirety. New King Thriller to Appear in Esquire
• · · · · Google thrives in part because of its reputation for being the best source of information on the Web. But has it compiled too much information about its users? Stand on the shoulders of giants; Over My Dead Body Now You See it Now You Do Not
• · · · · · PUBLIC servants have suffered one of the highest rejection rates in this year's Queen's Birthday honours list, but there are more public servants among the new officers in the Order of Australia than any other occupation. Of the 22 public servants nominated, 14 missed out. Of the 33 people made officers in the Order of Australia (AO, the second-highest in rank) chosen from 30 occupational groups, seven are male public servants. Among public servants many are called, but few are chosen ; If you're like me (and if you are, you're indirectly funding the college education of the children of the manufacturers of many popular antidepressants), you're spending an awful lot of time shopping online these days. Bookstore Etiquette, "Not in My Write Mind"

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Birthdays are strange things, the more you have the more you try and pretend they don’t matter … and the more people try and tell you they are not so bad.
Adam and Eva Lindsay Gordon love this obelisk and so does my sweet and exotic Mal ;-)
Life is only froth and bubble
Two things stand like cemetery stone in Vrbov
Kindness in another’s trouble.
Courage in your own! I am the voice from the crazy Cold, Cold, River

The Net is Dead: Long Live the Content and Link Happy 5th Birthday to Media Dragon
The new love of Internet is not about my daughters, Alex (sasha) and Gabbie (bella), paying more attention to its origins but about making of 21st century myth. Their old school celebrates 100th anniversary in 2007. Five years of Media Dragon (MD born June 2002) is almost Centenary in the virtual world ;-) But Sister Verinica Powell does not see it that way …Holly Cross was founded in June 1907 the Sisters Dorothy and Sister Leonard first taught only 30 children. Then Myspace was just a figment of imagination as it was in 2002 but today my girls and their friends could not communicate without it!

Like Brendan Cowell I love cemeteries. I grew up on Vrbov cemetery. Graveyard is full of death tales – tragedies, drownings, floods murders, whole families entombed together. There might be stories of sadness but birds still sing in the trees … Cemetery prepares you for a marriage and divorce to Lauren Rossiter, twenty years at legislative corridors and whatever brings the taxing time at projects like tornado or stardowner …

Kangaroo a.k.a. Klokan: The Kindness of Strangers; [Thanks to enemies and friends who czeched the Media Dragon over the years 33,000 in the last twelve months clustered in the virtual gossip; Happy Birthday Blog! ]

So allow me before I head for some leadership tips at the Hyde Park Room at the Shereton today to quote poet Ralph Waldo Emerson "To laugh often and much; to win respect of intelligent people and affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and to endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Hunger is the Best Cook!

We'll need all hands on deck and the cook...

Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living!
-Mother Jones and Double Dragon (Iron Curtain is the best motivator!)

Words can never describe the intimate atmosphere at the Sydney Writers Festival - how can the setting of azure harbour, warf, word loving bunch match anything as powerful as this ... The German and Canadian publishers Double Dragons who came and spoke at the festival loved it. Phillip Jones even took a leaf out of Cold River ;-) Luis Garcia made a great impact with his story ...

The New York Times asked a handful of writers what books they’ve enjoyed most over the last few months, and why. Their choices are idiosyncratic and instructive. From Salon, from the pursuit of a lost Shakespeare manuscript to a chilling tale of missing sisters, these recommendations will add sizzle to your beach book list; and Opus Day: An interview with Berkeley Breathed, Salon's new Sunday cartoonist. The Skim Trade: At New York's BookExpo, the literary event of a lunchtime. In Praise Of The Small Press: There are numerous other small presses out there. Check them out - you might discover a gem of your own. Flitting across the harbour and transforming the dreams

Words among words Roads To Reality
A Polish man has woken up from a 19-year coma to find the Communist party no longer in power and food no longer rationed It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness. Iron Curtain Crossers know why and how to let the light of the candles you light up overcome the darkness, it is too easy and too convenient to curse the darkness while paying lip sympathy that something should be done …

It may be an odd thing to do, but whenever I’m in another country, I always go to as many bookstores as I can, even when the language is Greek to me. I love seeing the differences in how books are made and promoted, the variations in cover designs and trim sizes and colors. Although I realize I’m looking through rose-colored glasses, there seems inevitably to be a cheeriness in window displays and a pleasant languor in browsing that, at least on the surface, are lacking at home. In the process of visiting sundry foreign bookstores, some places have become like old friends to drop in on when I’m in town. In Berlin, one particular acquaintance I feel I know intimately.

Fall of communists; [ Imagine what the Pole would feel in Sydney BookshopsAuf Readersehen; If a stranger in a drugstore aisle recommends a particular brand of toothpaste to you, or if you happen to see it mentioned on a blog, don't be surprised. Word-of-mouth promotion, also called viral advertising, has become a multimillion-dollar industry in the past few years. State-of-the-Art Ads Are Increasingly One-to-One ]
• · Shelve the stereotype of the red sports car, trophy wife and toupee - few men will experience a "midlife crisis" in these terms. Midlife crisis a myth for most men; Dr David Clune and Gareth Griffith - From the outset, the NSW Freedom of Information Act 1989 has been subject to amendment and criticism. While its introduction was accompanied by high expectations about improved democratic accountability, for many its actual operation has proved inadequate. Gareth Griffith surveys the major issues in FOI debate, along with the recent developments in this area of the law, in terms of legislative reform and the relevant case law. Freedom of information
• · · After the release of Google's street-level image service, privacy concerns rear up. Smile, it's Google's candid camera ;
• · · · Coke to give away 2 Billion Free iTunes Tracks ; Reminds me of my time in Q'land - ERINA FAIR is full of people, but few are shopping. The sprawling complex is a meeting place for Central Coast locals with nowhere else to go. In the morning, it is pensioners and the aged; in the afternoon and at night, it is bored teenagers. In the aisles of the time rich - Erina Fair is full of people, but few are shopping.
• · · · · This case depicts an executive who, through an online search, discovers information about a job candidate that causes him concern about her qualifications. The reader considers issues such as the legal implications of Internet searching practices, the veracity of information found online, and the wisdom of expecting job candidates to have spotless online reputations. We Googled You ; Growing Up in Public Like It or Not, New Generation's Public Disclosures Are the Wave of the Future on the Internet

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Si, Si - It is Sydney Writers Festival and the site is down all the time the Italian Film Festival is here and the woman we had a first crush on is in Australia. Even our priest Anton Glatz was in love with Sofia Loren ;-)

One year and a day after Media Dragon was born, back in 2002 AD, another mate of ours started to blog dangerously. His publishing history in the samizdat sense goes deeper than ours Bloggers patching the universe as best we can - moving here and there ...

Friday, June 01, 2007

Come to NSW - next the Parliament wants to allow three generation mortgages!

First home plus one (NSW) introduced
The Duties Amendment (First Home Plus One) Bill 2007 has been introduced into the NSW Parliament to extend a duty and land tax concession to first home owners who purchase their first home under a shared equity arrangement with a person who is not a first home owner.

• amends the Duties Act 1997 (NSW) to extend the First Home Plus scheme to first home owners who purchase their home under a shared equity arrangement (the concession is called "First Home Plus One") if the first home owner acquires at least a 50% share in the ownership of the property concerned.