MURDOCH & BLOGS
Rupert is threatening to charge for access to his online
content. Desperation indeed. Advances in information
technology have alway hurt someone. Caxton put the town criers
out of business, Radio hit print, then TV hit radio, and now the
internet is killing them all.
I read five comics exclusively. Non sequitur, Doonesbury, XKCD Questionable Content and GirlGeniusonline.
The last three are exclusively web based comics. The authors make
their income from Google ads, although they also seem to do OK out of
online sales of T Shirts.
Unfortunately for Rupert, I suspect that model is what he is
In any field of creative Media, there are a few dozen top people and a
few geniuses. In the pre Google days, media editors could choose
the wordsmith or media artist from among the top people who was most
closely aligned with their own views politically. That exposure
eventually earned those top people public credibility. The ABC in
particular only promotes "leftish" journalists on it's TV and radio
shows. The SMH and The Australian will frequently publish
journalists of opposing political views on the same subject, on the
same page. The commercial radio stations seem to have greater
audience draw with righty hosts like John Laws (now
retired) and Alan Jones. Not surprisingly, the ABC
does not have a large audience share in either radio or TV.
Geniuses are less politically predictable, and so did not get work from
Now I can get my media feed from Matt Drudge. He is the premier
worldwide news feed. He has four non intrusive advertisement on
his webpage, and is very rich, probably close to
being a billionaire already. I get three of my comics from the
online artists. If the Washingtonpost stops providing Doonesbury
and Nonsequitur, then I guess that I will either do without or buy the
newspaper (which I mostly do anyhow).
I have a lot of confidence in the media business acumen of
Rupert. The only charge model that I would subscribe to would be
establishing a line of credit with a worldwide credit
company, like American Express, and then payment of a few
cents per view. That would work for all online content. The
problem is, a middleman is not really necessary, as indicated by XKCD
If you noticed, I was offline since 1st June. (It is now 12th
June) My previous provider was Exetel. Costwise, they
aren't much cheaper than Telstra. I left them because the
connection kept going off. Around the beginning of each
month. (I was nowhere near my allocation). Data rates went
from around 512 to 10, (KB/S)
I complained the first two occasions. It's really hard to
complain. No people to talk to. The third time I canceled
the service. It took them NINE DAYS to get their codes off my
(telephone) line. Telstra were able to do the much more
complicated process of getting their codes on in two days.
I do not recommend EXETEL
Is it an interesting study in human nature or is it the laws of
defamation? Countless Airbuses have fallen out of the sky, or
have reported problems that the crew managed to solve. I haven't
noticed the same problems with US manufactured aircraft. And
nobody has commented that it is only Airbus that has the problems.
I first noticed problems three years
ago (see the bottom
of this page). From the diversity of problems that Airbuses
have since had, I suspect
that the Airbus aircraft control software must be defective. That
software must be fairly complex, perhaps approaching the complexity of
the Microsoft Operating System. Like Windows, later versions of
the aircraft control system are probably built up using code from
Admittedly, other things are always blamed. Having geese fly into
engines might sound like a conclusive reason for landing in the Hudson,
but the engines not restarting was
maybe software. Losing an airspeed indicator might sound
mechanical, but good software would have anticipated that
problem. And so on.
I can understand why Airbus Industries blame mechanical or human
faults. Software would be a real bitch to fix.
Like I said in July 2006, I will just be
insisting whenever possible on Boeing.
If it's the laws of defamation, and this post gets noticed, then this
will be removed pronto.
DEMOCRACY and the IRAN ELECTION
It is reported in the "The Australian" of 15th June 2009 that following
election, the theocratic government in Iran
Claims were made by main opposition leader Rafsanjani of vote
rigging As evidence he cited the anomalous result where
got about a
2/3 majority in each electoral district (country & city).
- Blocked text messaging.
- Blocked twittering.
- Blocked internet access to many outside websites, including
- Blocked mobile phones, and some international phone
- Arrested members of the opposition.
- Prevented any reports of the above actions from appearing in
the local media.
This is particularly worrying development to supporters of democracy
everywhere. Not because an unfriendly Iranian President was
returned to power. Iran just does not matter. Iran will not
attack Israel. It is worrying because it points the way for our
own governments to control us.
Likely our government could not wholesale interdict communications,
however keystone "troublemaker" media nodes (bloggers & twitterers
& etc) could perhaps be removed with surgical precision. I
would be surprised if "intelligent" software capable of analyzing
language & communications and determining critical troublemaker
nodes was not available within the next decade.
1984, here we come.
Unlike Catholicism, the various branches of the Muslim
not have centralization of power (like the Pope) but rather are an
uncoordinated rabble of holy men who exert influence and gain consensus
through and according to individual prestige.
Despite threats to Israel and the carrying out of Nuclear
research, I do not see Iran as
a real threat to Israel or the USA. (As a libertarian, I do not
think holocaust denial
is a heinous crime.) I see the main issue in the middle east as a
theological dispute between the Shia sect and the extremist Wahhabis,
with the Sunni uneasily allied with the Wahhabi. Iran is a
Shia, and Saudi money is the first proxy for the Wahhabi. The Saudi
royal family does not control the Wahhabi. Between the house of
and the Wahhabi Clerics there exists an uneasy alliance.
Hamas is a proxy for the Saudi kingdom, Hizbollah is a proxy for the
Iran Shia and the
PLO is a proxy for the USA All of those organizations
need and obtain money from their sponsors. (not for
personal enrichment you realize. It's just that one needs money
to purchase the
loyalty of sub factions & for charitable work in Palestine.)
The Iranian clerics hit Israel via Hizbollah and thus show that they
are good Muslims. The Saudi sponsored Hamas attacks Israel, thus
showing that they also are good Muslims. The USA needs
high oil production to keep the oil price down, and must protect Israel
for internal political reasons. That is why the PLO does not hit
Israel. Everybody realizes that if the Israel relief valve wasn't
there, there would instead be open warfare between the various Muslim
To the rulers of it's Muslim neighbours, Iran would be seen as a
dangerous revolutionary force. It's threat is not direct
invasion. Iran's threat is that by it's continued existence it
exports revolutionary Islamic ideas that could potentially destabilize
BERLUSCONI v MURDOCH
The recent stories about Berlusconi doing (or not doing) nymphets are
more than likely the result of Rupert's irritation at being excluded
from the Italian media market by local media baron and Prime Minister
Burlusconi. That sort of behaviour is not uncommon in those
circles. Money & power are aphrodisiacs.
It's just that, mostly, the media owners find it more profitable to not
bother printing the salacious gossip. Especially about each other.
THE ONGOING MARKET CRASH
A friend has written asking for comment on the effect of the world
market crash on Asia.
That market crash had been predicted and
a solution offered on this website nearly 2 years ago. By my
crash is currently less than halfway
to the bottom, which is expected to be when the DJIA (Dow Jones)
reaches about 2,000, around October 2011. And that is my
Third world nations will suffer a smaller income fall in percentage
terms, but this will represent a far greater harm to those that have
little than a greater percentage loss to those who have lived among
plenty. This will lead to civil strife. The command
economies (especially the Tianamen Square victors) will likely have to
face the Mandate of Heaven.
The subcontinent will also face turmoil, however the democracies have
an inbuilt inoculation against revolution, and
will likely survive politically, although not without great
hardship. The inhabitants of theocracies will suffer, but will
see the turmoil of the unbelievers as God's punishment for their sinful
RUDD + TURNBULL
What is the truth of this matter?
Did Rudd staffer
Charlton (PMO) write an email requesting treasury to give special
treatment to a mate exist or not?
My own suspicion is that it existed, and that somebody deep within an
NSA like organization (or the NSA) has a copy.
I surmise that Dr.
Charlton is a very adroit politician, that he found a way to purchase
some very good technological talent, at least good enough to not leave
traces that the investigating authority could find. The email has
been called a forgery, but I suspect that the grounds for that
pronouncement are that nobody could find the computer or evidence on
the server from which the email allegedly originated.
A lack of evidence
that the email came from the PMO is not evidence that the email did not
come from the PMO.
existed, would that email incriminate
Rudd or not? Even if it existed, Rudd could
easily disown it. It is Dr. Charlton's public career that would
be finished (or at the very least, interrupted).
Nevertheless, this attack by Turnbull is a godsend to Rudd. The
PMO response exonerates him
completely, no matter what the outcome for Dr. Charlton. Turnbull
is painted as precipitate.
Rudd recognizes that Turnbull is his most dangerous opponent.
Unfortunately for Rudd, politics is not the public service. I
suspect that Turnbull will recover from this setback, and be very much
more dangerous to Rudd.
Troubled Asset Relief Program. Well it wasn't very hard to wean
the big banks off that, was it. Just cut the management
incomes. Of course going off TARP might not be very good longtime
strategy for shareholders, bondholders, employees etc. but who
cares? Smaller banks are taking the benefit of TARP, and I expect
that they will eventually gain market share and large profits
thereby. Big banks will crash again as the market weakens
further, and will have to be saved again. And those bank
executives will retire in disgrace to their Palm Beach "shacks".
The ousting by the Supreme court of the Honduran President has been
condemned by world leaders from the gamut of the political spectrum,
from Barak to Chavez. Well they would think that way, wouldn't
they. There is not a one of them that wouldn't (or hasn't) follow
the same course if they thought they could get away with it.
We Australians never really had to fight for our democracy. After
the American revolution, the UK had learned it's lesson. We got
handed our nation shortly after Canada, without us having to fire a
shot in anger. As a result, we tend to treat our institutions too
The computer age brings with it increased surveillance possibilities,
which opens the possibilities for abuse. Very shortly, the
governments of the world will have a database that can report where
each citizen is in real time. If we do not have protocols in
place, such a system would be open to abuse.
And history shows that those who would abuse the system are cunning and
persistent in achieving their ends.
Me, I think the Honduran Legislature and Judiciary was quite
justified. Even Putin did not dare try that amendment.
Chavez did try and succeeded. When he first came to power I was
pro-Chavez. His legislation permitting removal of a president at
any time, like the laws that allowed Schwartzenegger to come to power
in California, are something I would like introduced in Australia.
I would suggest a constitutional amendment that no amendment should be
to the constitution that would be of possible benefit incumbents.
There are lots of other amendments I would like. e.g.
- Something that permitted open access to any public
system. It might infringe privacy, but that is better than the
- Schwartzenneger/Chavez amendment.
- National savings bank (shopfronts contracted to existing
banks as agencies.)