Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Not only is 2009, one of the single most tumultuous years for the Media Dragon, drawing to a close, but so is the first decade of a new century. Heroes rise, heroes fall. The contest goes on ...

It's 200 years since governor Lachlan Macquarie arrived in Sydney, yet the challenges he faced are remarkably similar to those haunting Premier Kristina Keneally in NSW today, argues Michael Duffy. So what lessons could she learn from the state's finest leader? The visionary we need right now
WHEN Nathan Rees was about to be replaced, he famously proclaimed his successor would be a puppet of Eddie Obeid and Joe Tripodi. But as we were reminded by last week's decision to keep Sydney's dysfunctional ferry service in public hands, there is another potential puppet master who stands above every Labor premier, and that is Unions NSW.

Sydney had its very colourful characters and corrupt police, and corruption up here was a lot worse than Melbourne

Tired of search surfing? Then take a stroll down the aisles of the Internet. Best of The Web

Best of the web 2009 - A winner is served Point of Difference: Winners and losers of the decade
As promised -- trumpet fanfare -- "The Winners and Losers of the Decade." Or, as I like to think of it, "The Winners and Losers of the Oughts," in deference to the zeros in each year of the decade's numbering, the zeros who were in charge and all that we ought to have done that we did not do.

Sex. Scandal. Unexplained deaths. You name it and the decade saw it all. Oh yes, there was sport too, broke barriers and went faster (on the road to stardom), higher (on the social ladder) and became stronger (financially) to create a new world order. There were many trail-blazers but Tiger Woods, despite his appetite off the field too, was easily the sportsman of the decade. As the year draws to a close, Crest presents the decade's winners and losers.

Washington edition ; [ My top 10 productions of the year (give or take a couple) This is where critic J. Kelly Nestruck posts his review after-thoughts ; Well that was probably a year that most of you are quite keen to forget. Except if you are a banker, of course, in which case you’re probably already in Barbados nestling down with your bonus and bottle of chilled Pol Roger while preparing to whoop it up with Michael Winner. 2009, a year to remember ]
• · ; Nominations open today (December 29, 2009) for the Breaking Borders Award, a new prize created by Google and Global Voices to honor outstanding web projects initiated by individuals or groups that demonstrate courage, energy and resourcefulness in using the Internet to promote freedom of expression. The award is also supported by Thomson Reuters. Global Voices partners with Google on freedom of expression award
• · · The Great Christmas Ornament Scandal has taken a remarkable turn. A festive ball on the White House tree that features a decoupage picture of Andy Warhol's silkscreen painting of Mao Zedong turns out not to be the only decoration with hidden political meanings for President Obama. An ornament with grave implications for events in the Middle East has also shown up. A Warhol Christmas at the White House ; The Great Christmas Ornament Scandal
• · · · New data shows that the iPhone may finally have a true competitor in the Android operating system with user profiles appearing very much alike. Android and iPhone users not so different after all; Analyst: Apps the secret to Apple's tablet success ; I didn’t realize until I started compiling this blog, how much I have written in the past year. And it runs the gamut, from blogs about over eating and pop culture, to professional wrestling and other sports related topics
• · · · · Instead, they turned to Tavi Gevinson, a 13-year-old blogger and muse from the suburbs of Chicago, to star in a behind-the-scenes video about the line on the Target website. Blogger Tavi Gevinson, already an industry sensation at 13, is now working her magic for Rodarte's Target line; From Beethoven to "Bored To Death" the Play staff listed their favorite foods, films, music and more from the past year. Best of 09 ; FOR some people, the boundary between the real world and the virtual world of the internet is a slippery, and increasingly porous, one Filtering threatens freedom, but won't stop net nasties

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I Wish You - as well as Near and Dear Ones - Happiest Holly Seasons Wishes …

As they say in the good old Czechoslovakia, the object of a new year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul.

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called "Opportunity" and its first chapter is New Year's Day. Of all sound of all bells, the most solemn and touching is the peal which rings out the Old Year.

The French stocking filler that sheds light on tax havens Enquête au Paradis . . . fiscal

A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to the world! What Star Wars can teach us about management
Use the implicit wisdom and shared experiences of those inhabitants of a galaxy far, far away to raise your profile

Available all the time: etiquette for the social networking age, Knowledge@Wharton, 30 September 2009. As Facebook, Twitter and 24-hour Blackberry access blur the lines between business and personal lives, managers and employees are struggling to develop new social norms to guide them through the ongoing evolution of communications technology
Internet, phone and mail fraud grows, ComputerWorld, 10 December 2009. Australian Payments Clearing Association APCA data released this week shows a rise in online, phone and mail fraud. Payments fraud in Australia

• In Pietro Orioli's painting of the Nativity, says Vincent Nichols, we are reminded that neither love nor freedom can flourish without sacrifice and self-restraint for the sake of others Christmas: when the sacred becomes real - and We are all become real leaders; [Experiencing leadership, Megan Reitz, 360º - the Ashridge journal, Winter 2009-2010, 4p. As managers progress through their careers, they will experience occasions that prove to be critical in shaping them as a leader. Critical event simulations can accelerate the learning of a leader-in-waiting. Experiencing leadership; To keep up to date with more on the latest books, articles, websites and news on leadership topics, go to the eLibraryBlog on leadership. To contribute information or leave a comment, please email the eLibraryHelpdesk for access Leadership Blog ]
• • Trends - Google has given users the ability to find out what the world is talking about with the universal launch of real-time search. The search giant announced deals with Facebook and MySpace to include public updates from the social networking sites in their "latest results" feed on the usual Google results pages. Google Ushers in Real-time Search With Facebook, Twitter, Media Dragon; At a loss for words? Google offers search by sight. Words race car spelled backward spells race car... Google unveils real-time and search-with-a-photo features
• • • A group of millionaires in Germany are demanding a redistribution of wealth. Could something similar happen here? Let’s try to imagine, against the odds, that this is a story set in Britain: a group of wealthy heirs, industrialists and entrepreneurs, men and women who are rich enough not to work, who have enough money, property or dividends to allow them to live comfortably for the rest of their lives, decide instead to give their money away The millionaires who want to pay more tax; Taxing civilisation; Martin Sullivan today tracks the declining tax rate on millionaires ; Eat is the only word that if you take the 1st letter and move it to the last, it spells it's past tense, ate. It's the way a wolf goes after the weakest sheep Why Does the IRS Audit the Poor?

Sunday, December 06, 2009

If you love someone, set them free.
If they come back they're yours; if they don't they never were.
-Richard Bach (author of Jonathan Livingstone Seagull)

On St Mikulas, St Nicholas, our Moravian maid asked for a pay increase.

My wife was very upset about this and decided to talk to her about the raise.

She asked: 'Now Anka, why do you want a pay increase?'

Anka: 'Well, Madam, there are three reasons why I want an increase. The first is that I iron better than you.'

Wife: 'Who said you iron better than me?'

Anka: 'Your husband said so.'

Wife: 'Oh.'

Anka: 'The second reason is that I am a better cook than you.'

Wife: 'Nonsense, who said you were a better cook than me?'

Anka: 'Your husband did.'

Wife: 'Oh.'

Anka: 'My third reason is that I am a better lover than you.'

Wife: (really furious now) 'Did my husband say that as well?'

Anka: 'No Madam...the gardener did.'

Wife: 'So how much do you want?'

St Mikulas of Moravia

Moravian History - Fools rush in where wise men fear to tread

A bohemian city is more than the sum of its parks, buildings and houses; it is more than the sum of the souls who live there. It is the spirit and imagination that resides in all its grand mansions, shanties and slums, and on the streets and in the hearts and heads of its people. As Russell Brand says, quoting a discussion with a schoolfriend, in his philosophical tome My Booky Wook: "'See all these buildings? All these buildings were once a drawing on a piece of paper and before that they were an idea in someone's head. Any idea that you have, you can make manifest' ... Wow. Man. That, like, totally blew my mind."

Inner-city Sydney was severely dispirited this week as the buildings between Pitt Street and Castlereagh Street were permanently vacated by tenants. They are to be pushed down to the ground to make room for a concrete tribute to a bank, ANZ, and to commercial lawyers Freehills, funded by Grocon.

I'll miss the cheap Christmas presents I got at the last minute at the Closing Down Store, the self-selected sandwiches at Castlereagh Gourmet where they know your order without asking and, of course, number 77