Tuesday, September 29, 2009

To the uninitiated, it's a mystery why one cafe is constantly throbbing with groovy, animated people while the next has the atmosphere of a morgue, but those in the know say it's not so hard to fathom what makes a coffee shop attract a cult following -- or even just become the first choice of the street. Places like Sweet Spot at randwick, Brubar at North Bondi and Single Origin anywhere will show you how to get a caffeine hit

baristas worth every bean The greatest things in life are shared: Where's the best coffee in Sydney?
It may be a long way from anywhere but Australia boasts one of the world’s most vibrant coffee cultures. The specialty coffee industry has grown in the last 50 years not from coffee chains but through top quality independent cafés born out of the early Greek and Italian immigrants, write Matthew Gee and David Gee

No one gets close to Single Origin in Surry Hills. Yoshi is the best barista in Sydney. Fantastic latte art, super fast and he knows every regulars name and the coffee's they drink. Brilliant. All the staff are warm and friendly, which is more than I can say for lots of the other cafe's that reputably serve good coffee.

Joshi aka Yoshi aka ...; [One of the most memorable comments about software ever said is whether this or that piece of code can make coffee Brown Gold ; Coffee Snobs; Coffee-Business Plan for the NSW Coffee Growing Industry Northern NSW Coffee Industry; RIRDC is a statutory authority established by the Primary Industries and Energy Research and Development Act Sydney Coffee growing]
• · Raise a mug for World's Biggest Coffee Morning; Sopear is a good word to know if you're buying conchas from Pancho's Bakery. It's Spanish for "to sop," as in to dunk your Mexican pastries in milk, coffee or hot chocolateSopping
• · · Your afternoon coffee may be weighing you down - Your afternoon coffee may be weighing you down It's meant to pick you up and get you through the rest of the day but added calories in afternoon coffees can weigh people down Afternoon cup o' joe could be making you fat; Chemically Imbalanced 10 Popular Coffee Blogs
• · · ·
Oz Coffee Exchange
; Silver linings do exist in the heavens and a negative happening can often be seen as just the necessary action to spark a greater good, but it's usually the sad or negative that catches our eyes. The greatest things in life are shared
• · · · · Starbucks failed to impress New Yorkers with their new instant coffee during its launch this week. Sage; Politics of Coffee and sharing

Friday, September 25, 2009

Media Dragon is celebrating more than Sikh Bohemian wedding anniversary or our arrival in antipodean Sydney all those years ago (circa 1980), this September Media Dragon has had over 60,000 visits, between 2006 and 2009 AD, from mischievous readers clicking their mouse in more than 100 countries. We are proud of our global readership and thank you for your continued support. Six degree of separation - 60,000 Visitors from More than 100 Countries!

PS - Media Dragon sends a welcome home to Steve, TL and Travis

Light is the best antidote Internet has never been more dangerous Who bravely dares must sometimes risk a fall: 10 harsh truths about corporate blogging
Internet has never been more dangerous ... The proliferation of malware online keeps setting new records and security experts are worried. Between January and June this year, the number of fake antivirus programs detected grew by 585%, according to a report released by the Anti-Phishing Working Group...

Is it possible that you've ever made a customer angry enough to blog about your "friendly" service? When working with business and government institutions, I always set up a Google Alert, which searches the internet 24/7 looking specifically for these sorts of comments ...
Most organizations have a blog simply because they feel they should. Many...fail to "get" blogging and have poorly visited blogs with few comments. Because their blog fails to perform, they conclude that blogging is an ineffective...However, it does not need to be this way. Corporate blogs can be a powerful communication tool that builds brand awareness and nurtures a sense of engagement.

Paul Boag - The One Degree with 360 Degrees of Opportunities ; Phishing ; [Web 2.0: the new tools for democratic conversations - a snapshot of initiatives in government, Information Victoria, Department of Innovation, Industry and Regional Development, September 2009. This paper provides an overview of developments in the use of interactive online communications described as Web 2.0 and when applied in government, better known as Government 2.0. Web 2.0 ; IT modernisation: an exercise in alignment - This report, based on interviews and a global survey of 170 senior executives, concludes that while firms recognise the importance of modernising IT systems, they do not always implement such projects effectively...with respect both to drivers of IT modernisation projects and benefits of such projects. It also investigates the impacts of the current economic upheaval on organisations' modernisation efforts PDF IT ]
• · MURDOCH's announcement that the free ride is over has certainly generated some debate. What this signals is a substantial shift in thinking about the price of content on the internet. What was missing from Murdoch's announcement – and others like Fairfax Media chief Brian McCarthy's statement that monetisation will have to happen – is just how newspapers will make the transition online ; The world in 2025 ... Thus, began the fierce endeavour of the State to squeeze the population to the last drop. Since, economic resources fell short of what was needed, the strong fought to secure the chief share for themselves with a violence and unscrupulousness well in keeping with the origin of those in power and with a soldiery accustomed to plunder. The full rigour of the law was let loose on the population. Soldiers acted as bailiffs or wandered as secret police through the land. Those who suffered most were, of course, the propertied class. It was relatively easy to lay hands on their property, and in an emergency, they were the class from whom something could be extorted most frequently and quickly ... Is this too fanciful, do you think, too apocalyptic? Well, this is not a dark prediction, proceeding from the recesses of some futurologist's "heat oppressed brain" but a direct quotation taken from The Cambridge Ancient History , pp. 263-264, in the section that deals with the decline of the Roman Empire. [In 2008, the IRS project team established a presence in the Second Life virtual world with the goal of exploring the potential use of this environment for recruitment and training purposes] Decline of the Roman Empire
• · · Heredity is what sets the parents of a teenager wondering about each other. -Laurence J. Peter
Chuck Collins, heir to the Oscar Mayer fortune, is looking for 1,000 rich people to sign his online petition seeking to raise immediately reverse the Bush tax cuts and increase the top tax marginal income tax rate to 39.6% from 35% on household incomes of more than $235,000. In a prior effort, Mr. Collins worked with William H. Gates Sr. and George Soros in getting 4,702 signatures on a petition opposing repeal of the estate tax. Soros ; Banker bonuses minute, says duke
• · · · Crimes ; Fourteen years after Peter Savage, 16, was bashed and stabbed in a street at Lidcombe, police have charged a man with murder and expect more people to be ... Savage Story
• · · · · RU OK? Day, Launched on 10 September, World Suicide Prevention Day, the new RU OK? Initiative that aims to lower Australia's suicide rates. The main message is to communicate and connect with people by simply asking "Are you OK?" It also aims to promote awareness of information and support by raising the profile of existing organisations that provide these services. The inaugural RU OK? Day will be held on November 29 RU OK? Day, - Whatever Works as in Woody Allen; Have you noticed that we are being bombarded by a flood of work by neuroscientists and behavioral economists, aided by such things as clever research design, the use of improved technologies for measuring brain activity, and the admission by Alan Greenspan that markets acted in ways he had not anticipated? The work shares several common counter-intuitive conclusions that: (1) human behavior is much less rational than has been assumed, (2) this renders much of conventional teaching in fields such as economics and management obsolete, and (3) it makes suspect much of what we do as managers Are you ready to manage in an irrational world?; Every politician knows that ideas have consequences, so whether it is Beijing, Bangkok, Brussels, Beirut, or Buenos Aires, policy makers seek the advice and counsel of scholars from think tanks who understand this reality and are able to shape policies and Politics with their ideas
• · · · · · Michael D'Ascenzo - Leaders that make a difference ; The Merit Protection Commissioner and Ethical Decision Making. A publication on how to use the APS Values and Code to make ethical decisions in the APS Leadership Forum in 2009; Authority versus persuasion, Eric J Van den Steen, Harvard Business School Working Paper, 5 August 2009, 22p. In directing employees, managers often face a choice between invoking authority and persuasion. In choosing between persuasion and authority the manager makes a cost-benefit trade-off. This paper studies that trade-off, focusing in particular on conflicts that originate in open disagreement focusing in particular on conflicts that originate in open disagreement


[T]he truly dismaying shrinkage of the book review issue published at the University of Michigan—which is ostensibly, almost ostentatiously, committed to the importance of the book-review enterprise—is symptomatic of a truly national disease. In the remainder of this brief and informal Essay, I will first offer some data substantiating my concern and then offer some of my observations as to the baleful consequences of what the data reveals Book Reviews

UK-HRD began as a moderated e-mail-based discussion forum for training and human resource development specialists. It now provides a virtual meeting place for around 1,000 people who have already subscribed. When you subscribe a digest of the questions asked, and answers provided is compiled and e-mailed directly to you every working day. Some of the subscribers are very experienced - even experts in their fields - so visitors are tapping into a valuable and indispensable resource. The discussion forum is growing constantly.This web site complements the discussion forum

This site might be an interesting starting point for new internet users in the domain of HR. Included are a database of HR products, the research center, an agenda of seminars, HR articles Workforce online

This is a tremendous site offering the visitor a chance to sample and trial HR software 360-degree feedback

HRM Guide is a series of linked web sites containing hundreds of free human resource management-related articles and features. Stimulating stuff

Job satisfaction:
* European heaven. It's where the English are the police, the French are the cooks, the Swiss are the bankers, the Italians are the lovers and the Germans are the engineers.

* European hell. It's where the English are the cooks, the French are the engineers, the Swiss are the lovers, the Italians are the bankers and the Germans are the police.
Job satisfaction:
and More Green or Emerald is on the other side ...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Sydneysiders have woken to a red haze unlike anything seen before by residents or weather experts, as the sun struggles to pierce a thick blanket of dust cloaking the city this morning. Callers flooded talkback radio, others hit social networking sites and scores of emails were received from smh.com.au readers as Sydney residents expressed their amazement at this morning's conditions The dust that dare not speak its name

Sydney dust storm worst in 70 years, says weather bureau. Birds had been blown out of their nests ... Sydney dust storm leads to tactical advertising bonanza

It did feel like Armageddon because when I was in the kitchen looking out the skylight, there was this red, red glow coming through Armageddon

Armageddon Global Warning Eeerie red haze - Havoc in the Political World
We've been living through a leadership failure seldom experienced in our nation's history---matched only by failure to head off the Civil War and failure to anticipate and initially react to the Great Depression. Government, business, religious, financial and social leaders have all let us down.

What's the answer? It lies in recognizing the truth about past sins and dealing the new realities honestly---and where need be---with courage. A lot courage.

Courage; [ We are actually much more than ways to launder money, receive the proceeds of ransoms, or evade lawful taxes in your home country, as Hollywood knows it is much more than that…Don’t cry at political scandal. It could be verse; The names, all linked in some way or other to the biggest political scandal France has seen in years, come from the notebooks of Denis Robert]
• · Safire himself, no stranger to the Nixon White House, popularized the use of "gate" as a suffix for any political scandal. Political Lexicographer; In an uncanny defiance of the usual fallout from a Facebook scandal, it didn't seem to really dent the young politician's rise to stardom. ...Facebook
• · · What was surprising about the show was the fact that it was less about the political scandal and more about the wife who was left to pick up the pieces. 'The Good Wife' review: Well-timed and well-done;
• · · · Besides his dirty campaign tricks, Rove has also been implicated, though never indicted, for various political scandals. When it was leaked to the press Becoming responsibly engaged in the world; Fresh allegations about government misconduct involving a controversial nuclear waste storage facility at Gorleben have rekindled political debate about atomic energy in Germany, just weeks before the country goes to the polls. Media commentators speculate that the issue could affect the national election. German Nuclear Scandal is 'Hair-Raising and Unforgivable'
• · · · · Sure, it's the stuff of holy wars, political scandals, romantic devastation, economic ruin and almost always a guaranteed catalyst of despair. The words “lie,” “truth,” and “honesty” are never uttered in The Invention of Lying, save for the “L”-word’s invocation ; A survey that could be deemed a bit frivolous is nevertheless interesting: CQ asked its readers to rank 10 recent political scandals, from most to ...least scandalous.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Gitka, the Slavic Vatican chef, Andrej and more than 120,000 people packed a field outside the Czech city of Brno on Sunday for an open air mass by Pope Benedict XVI who is on a high profile visit on the 20th anniversary of the fall of communism. Pope Benedict has wrapped up a three-day visit to the Czech Republic where he used an outdoor mass to urge young people to remain faithful to world needs God-fearing people prepared to Czech patron saint, St Wenceslas; Pope Benedict

Change the World? Why Not Courage and Heart of Dreams
KEVIN relied on a number of mentors in my life. To bring things full circle, here’s a guest post from Cameron Gallagher, a young man I’ve started mentoring, on challenge, courage and dreams...

To say you will have the boundaries of what is courageous for you pushed will be an understatement. Sometimes you won't find the courage, and that too, will hurt. Sometimes, a lot.

But with each challenge, you will grow stronger. And you will learn, as I am learning, that the reward of living life in a world where everything remains forever possible is a reward far greater than any material prize could ever be.

So now I must live up to the seed I have sown, and the very idea of trying to do that terrifies me. The 99 percent is already telling me I'll fail and stuff it all up. However, in reality, that just means I have another opportunity to prove those voices wrong.
So, my question to you is this;
Are you ready to Change the World?
Because you are only one choice away.

• If Obama's well-chosen inspirational language improves the climate of negotiation in long-standing disputes, this is an achievement in itself. Mentoring; [Let us remember that rivers and water underpins everything. There has been increasing debate about censorship in its many guises in recent times; everything from what constitutes pornography to what people should be allowed to wear. There are deep fundamental issues here that do deserve to be talked about and acknowledged. These issues ultimately boil down to questions of freedom of expression and openness to ideas; any ideas. These twin concepts are a cornerstone of vibrant democracy, which is why being precise about the meanings of the words used in the discussion is important. Classifying censorship: the shadow without end; Serena Williams, Kanye West and Joe Wilson all recently made seemingly unscripted outbursts: their apologies won't erase their incivility.A lot of sorry, buts ...; The Richest People In America. Forbes magazine. 1 October 2009. America's super rich are getting poorer. For only the fifth time since 1982, the collective net worth of The Forbes 400, the annual tally of the nation's richest people, has declined, falling $300 billion in the past 12 months from $1.57 trillion to $1.27 trillion. My Amerikan Families Again - Richest People In America]
• · A message of hope led Lucienne Simon to pursue an exhibit depicting the Great Depression; Hope and optimism are not the same. 'Hope is humble, trustful, vulnerable. Optimism is arrogant, brash, complacent. Hope has known the pang of suffering and the chill of despair. A spiritual moment - a vibe you can't articulate
• · · A mega-wealthy ex-pat Kiwi has been unwittingly caught up in an alleged $500-million-plus fraud with claims top Russian government ministers were involved Any suggestion that Renaissance was involved in a 2006 tax fraud is wholly false ; Tax Evaders Face Choice: Pay or Pray
• · · · Richard Murphy is a founder of the Tax Justice Network and director of Tax Research LLP. An expert on tax policy, he writes a daily blog which provides regular news on his activities and opinions at So refreshing to see someone telling the truth A leading adviser on research and development tax credits has leapt to the defence of HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), claiming its officers are right to crack down on those trying to exploit the system. Peter Denison-Pender, managing director of Alma Consulting, refuted claims made by accountancy Grant Thornton earlier this month that tax inspectors were being unfairly tough with companies seeking R&D tax credits. HMRC is not the bad guy here. All they are doing is clamping down on production masquerading as research. Good for him. Bad for GT. And how good to see someone saying that cheating and then blaming HMRC is unacceptable Perhaps there are ethics out there, after all, in amongst the self promotion; Oscar Wilde would have regarded our modern Corporations Law not only as uneatable, but also indigestible and incomprehensible ...
There is no dispute; it is unlovely and unloved. Complex, ungainly, internally inconsistent, conceptually troubled; the Corporations Act 2001(CA 2001) is a mishmash of old law, ad hoc amendments, provisions pulled willy-nilly from different legal systems, statements which are not law at all, ideological posturing, and
drafting styles that swing wildly from the colloquial to the technical. Despite massive efforts at law reform in the last fifteen years, and continuous tweaking, the CA 2001 remains, as Sir Anthony Mason found it, indigestible and incomprehensible All in it together Unlovely and Unloved: Corporate Law Reform's Progeny
• · · · · QUEENSLAND'S politicians have been warned to explain how they spend their massive secret allowances or risk facing a British-style MP expenses scandal MPs' allowances should be revealed: Information Commissioner; ; You’re going to purge tax havens, Prime Minister? But Britain is the biggest tax haven of them all ; Parliamentary expenses

A New Zealand taxman smashed his car through the building where he worked for 25 years because he was fed up with "incompetent management and workplace bullying".
David Jerrold Theobald, 47, drove through two sets of glass doors and smashed a third at the Christchurch Inland Revenue building before coming to a stop. Taxman ; Different The round pegs in the square holes,

It began in the biggest bestseller of all, The Bible. Adam and Eve set up life in a tax-free earthly heaven called Eden The idyll memoir
It began in the biggest bestseller of all, The Bible. Adam and Eve set up life in a tax-free earthly heaven called Eden.

Two decades have passed since the publication of Peter Mayle’s international bestseller A Year in Provence . Translated into 22 languages, the book was adapted for the radio and, in 1993, turned into a BBC1 series with John Thaw and Lindsay Duncan. Its effect was to establish memoirs of life in sunny idylls as an important literary genre. But how have such books fared since?

You never know who might learn from your story: Anne Frank's famous diary is one of history's greatest stories, and memoirs from icons such as Marilyn
But often our most significant moments are fleeting. So we rely on memories -- and the tradition of storytelling -- to keep them alive.
Life is full of unique experiences and memorable events
My Dog Ate My Nobel Prize: The Fabricated Memoirs of Jeff Martin

This book has almost no political content whatsoever Lance Allred
Emissary between the land of rice and beans and the land of cholent and kugel ; Reading this life is like gorging on a chocolate sundae
Here’s an unintended consequence of the proliferation of memoirs from “ordinary” people: We now run into characters from our favorite books in our own everyday lives. Last week, for instance, we had dinner at Delancey, a new Seattle restaurant with wood-fired pizzas, salads fresh from the farmers markets, and raspberry popsicles so bright and pretty my toddler cried when his was gone. The man behind the lovely little place is Brandon Pettit. We know and like him, in the same two-degrees-of-separation way we know a lot of Seattle’s food community. But we know him on a far different level - how he met his wife, the details of their first kiss, that he snores when he has a cold – through the eyes of wife Molly Wizenberg, chronicled in her bestselling memoir, “A Homemade Life.”
Real-life encounters with the stars of memoirs
So when is it best to write a memoir and when is it better to just write a novel “based on a true story?”

With Grit, Nothing Is Impossible Humour those accounts of roof-fixing [I have always despised bullies and - wait a minute - these people are public servants, not public masters They shouldn't strike terror into people's hearts, but they do.'; Nations are not monuments. They are not made of stone. They are works-in-progress made — and remade — each and every generation out of the hard work and hope of our men and women Save the World, Pee in the Shower! ]
• · Series of terse vignettes that recount the highlights of the rather extraordinary (Wentworth) It was clear within the first couple of dozen pages which ones had a story to tell, which had momentum and a compelling voice Impatient CEOs are all of a Twitter, but it doesn't work like that; Caroline Shahbaz, a self-styled ''white witch''
• · · CONFESSIONS OF ANOTHER BLEEDING HEART: Brumby’s speechwriter departs with a few bon mots for the comrades. It should come as no surprise that when a speech-writer quits that he would have a little bit to say. We really enjoyed long-time Labor staffer and current speechwriter to Victorian Premier Brumby Joel Deane’s parting email which he sent out to his brothers and sisters in arms in the Premier’s office and beyond today …Governments—unlike the timeless eternity of the public service—have limited life spans and need to behave accordingly: agitating for progress, focusing on defining issues and moments, and realising that, although politics may be, as Bismarck said, the art of the possible, that does not mean, as Havel pointed out, that we should stop striving for the impossible We all want our names in stone ; Transparency International – Czech Republic
• · · · The person most likely to rip off a business is a manager Who's the fraud suspect? Try the boss ; Ex-UBS AG banker Bradley Birkenfeld, who assisted U.S. investigators probing about $20 billion in taxpayer assets hidden overseas, was sentenced to more than three years in prison for conspiring to help wealthy Americans evade taxes. Taxes Italy begins to tighten tax screw= The wheels of the Italian tax system grind slowly. Sometimes they do not grind at all, if the country's reputation for tax evasion is any measure. But when the wheels do turn, they can grind exceedingly fine, as Sophia Loren discovered ; The Italian tax authority has opened an inquiry into allegations that members of the Agnelli family Best of the Web: Italian tax authority drives Fiat family probeSix beers of separation

• · · · · Ms Jennie Granger has recently commenced in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet as Deputy Secretary, Office of the Co-ordinator General, on secondment from her role as Second Commissioner of Taxation. Ms Granger has extensive experience in implementation and service delivery from her distinguished career in the Australian Taxation Office, which will be invaluable in her role of oversight of implementation by the States and Territories of the Government’s nation building package Ms Jennie Granger ; I am not a politician, and there is a limit to how much of the political game I am willing or able to play. Hopefully, if the citizens of Connecticut are not ready to abandon capitalism and can embrace a candidate who represents a real change, then I think I have a chance.Assistant Treasurer Nick Sherry is pushing for the Australian Taxation Office to take over all taxes, fees and charges imposed by every level of government to improve the efficiencyof Australia's $350 billion tax system as a
key reform of the Henry review.; It has often been said that tax evasion is a national sport in Italy, but now financial inspectors have announced a purge that has millionaires quaking on their yachts and in their seaside villas
• · · · · · 'Investigative journalism at it's best' is the tagline for the ABC's Four Corners. If the reaction on Twitter is anything to go by this weeks edition 'Fear in the Fast Lane' fell spectacularly short in it's expose of internet related crime Four Corners reveals first-hand how wireless connections are an invitation to thieves ; Fast Lane - We Warrior
CODA FOR the first time in its history, advertising on pay-TV failed to show significant growth in the first six months of the year

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

This would have been considered parliamentary coincidence especially in the NSW Parliament ... it is my Godson's birthday today Happy Birthday Alex - Olek ... and the newspapers are filled with godfathers of a different kind!

Producers of real crime television hit Underbelly have approached the NSW Parliament for permission to shoot scenes for the new series within the Legislative Chamber. The Daily Telegraph has learned that representatives of the show approached the parliament last Friday, the day that Michael McGurk was murdered. The new show will cover the period of the Wood Royal Commission into corruption in the NSW Police force Underbelly producers ask to film new series in State Parliament ; THEIR timing is impeccable

Best government money can buy Point of Order: When someone like John Hatton shares with you something of value, you have an obligation to share it with others
The plot is worthy of a master storyteller like Frederick Forsyth.

On a September night, a businessman is gunned down at point-blank range outside his luxury mansion as he gets out of his black Mercedes carrying a bag of groceries. The stench of corruption and talk of explosive secret tapes in the wake last week s murder of standover man Michael McGurk, has brought back bad memories for many people, especially those who have worked for the bear pit, sandpit, of NSW Parliament during the roaring 80s and 90s.
The parliamentary inquiry into the murder of lender of last resort' Michael McGurk holds dangers for Kevin Rudd because it could spread its tentacles to the federal arena. Labor Party figures are being smeared every day and the stain is steadily spreading, forcing NSW Premier Nathan Rees to decide three days ago to hold an inquiry, despite previously saying such a move would be absurd'.

The parliamentary inquiry into the murder of lender of last resort; Michael McGurk [Mr McGurk had many involvements in the property development industry, and for several years was closely associated with Bob Ell, the man behind Leda Holdings, which had a proposal before Shoalhaven City Council to extend the Stockland Nowra shopping centre. Shoalhaven City Council ; 'The man in black' or Johnny Cash, as friends call him was wearing his customary designer black threads as he chatted business at -J the Chop House in Bligh Street Sydney and Wild Men of it]
• · John Hatton stretched the limits of the role of an Independent Member of the New South Wales (NSW) Legislative Assembly further than any politician preceding
him. John Hatton; John Hatton, Independent South Coast MP, raised matters of police corruption in the NSW Parliament for many years, leading to the Royal Commission.; Stateline
• · THE captain of the Socceroos, Lucas Neill, and the former NSW planning minister Craig Knowles, have been caught up in the aftermath of the murder of Sydney bagman Michael McGurk. Michael Rushford flew to New Zealand via Fiji and returned with a new passport and a new identity - Michael Loch McGurk A murky past with many identities - Michael Loch McGurk was a man with a lot of enemies ; The life of Michael McGurk made him an ideal victim for an Agatha Christie mystery. Except it was all too real. Kate McClymont and Vanda Carson look below the surface. He'll go to his grave with a lot of secrets AMONG Michael McGurk's more unusual business interests was a shareholding in Doughboy, a pizza company run by former premier Neville Wran and Mr Wran's long-term business partner Albert Wong. Gold How a quiet bush block turned into a goldmine ; Wran connection ; Sea of links ;
• · · THE developer Ron Medich stands to gain millions from a western Sydney site he bought 13 years ago for a pittance from the CSIRO, confidential documents obtained by the Herald show. Mystery Widens ; Google Hunt for clues;
• · · · As John Della Bosca faced the press gallery at Macquarie Street yesterday, the story threatened to become as much about what was said as what was not ... THE woman whose affair with John Della Bosca led to his resignation yesterday has been named as comedy writer Kate Neill ; Ms Neill was named by Channel Seven and Channel Nine as the woman at the centre of the controversy. They showed footage of Ms Neill appearing on a television show, apparently under the pseudonym 'Harmony'. Invoke Fatal Attraction's Glenn Close character for a creepy version of payback for their ugly parting. Feminist Eva Cox said it was understandable the woman had wanted to protect her privacy Why would she want make her identity known?" Professor Cox said. "The Labor Party would herd her out of NSW ; Fatal Attraction's Glenn Close character
• · · · · Barry O'Farrell looks destined for glory but he's playing his cards cautiously. David Marr caught up with the Liberal leader. O'Farrell resides within his electorate at Roseville with his wife Rosemary O'Farrell and their two young children. His wife Rosemary is the daughter of former National Party member Bruce Cowan. He lives around the corner and down the hill from the picture theatre he rarely visits. Young Will, 10, goes to the local public school. Tom, 15, is up the line at Barker. O'Farrell is full of careful praise for the high schools of Ku-ring-gai but the boys are going to Barker to absorb Christian values. Out of the ordinary; In 2000 Russell Cope, former New South Wales Parliamentary Librarian, sounded alarm bells when discussing the significance of early book collections in Australian parliamentary libraries. Many of his observations apply equally well to the types of book collections I have already mentioned. He writes:

Many countries would today consider such collections from the nineteenth century and even earlier as valuable national resources with a claim to cultural and heritage importance in a country not notably wealthy in library collections. In Australia this might very well be the case if these collections were better understood by researchers and even by librarians. It does not seem overstating the situation to say that the collections of the parliamentary libraries acquired in the nineteenth century and early twentieth century represent their major contribution to social, cultural and intellectual resources of the nation Their significance transcends the limited parliamentary context: they are truly national assets in their own right. ;
• · · · · · There is the ghostly man who walks through the floor, a silent horse drawn carriage out the front and down the road a baby cries at night. Anyone who claims there is no spirit left in the New South Wales Parliament should try spending a night there alone, The Daily Telegraph reports Be afraid ... perhaps the ghost of Mark Latham isn't the only political ghoul out there; Librarian Mark D'Arney killed himself after blowing the whistle on the discount sale of 3000 historic books from the State Parliament's library Death of a whistleblower; Sad Memories

Sunday, September 13, 2009

To be or We can be to not to be Mr PWC and I Clark took to heart the latest tourism slogan ... we Lost Ourselves in Melbourne.

A report around the time we invade Melborne that suggested the closure of Melbourne's Manchester Lane -- first reported in this column last week -- was "another blow to Melbourne's dwindling live music scene". Dwindling? Ahhh . . . no. Evidence to the contrary, your honour, will be presented on Saturday at Roxanne Parlour.

Hat tip to bloggers of the Victorian capital for the following links

Happiness is gaining ground. In fact, it’s moving from East to West. Bhutan made famous its focus on Gross National Happiness, not on GDP, and now France wants to include happiness as a key metric for the country.

For change to take real effect, it needs to be personalized Doing One Thing

The paradox of doing 'family' in an e-world means more communication but less togetherness.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Mal and Media Dragon invaded the old Stables in Sydney. However Paul Niemand is that most familiar of figures in today's world: the middle-aged middle manager in crisis. Too old to change, too scared to quit and subject to endless self-appraisal sessions by hyped-up junior executives, he retreats into the permafrost of his past: a lonely childhood; memories of his father, a dangerously incompetent air-traffic controller; a cat freezing to death in a canal.

He protests passive-aggressively, deliberately running late for business flights. Hearing his name being called over an airport PA gives him a sense of being present in a world that has no need of him. In uneasy dreams his car parks itself. In nightmares he stalks ''losers'' through a shopping mall with a gun.

The German playwright Falk Richter presents us with an image of contemporary society leached of human feeling and relentlessly focused on consumption. It's a bleak assessment of the world we live in, but Richter is a satirist as much as he is a Cassandra. Under Ice is shot through with absurd humour and playful send-ups of human resources double-speak. (''Energise others with blue sky thinking'', ''Have a concept, make the client the hero of your narrative'') In the boardroom-centred world of Under Ice there is no love, only productivity

Under Cold River is also shot through with absurd humour and strange ism-send-ups of communist resources double-speak Under Cold River