The Pencil Guy: Hourann's illogical blog

“Close”? Really?

Sunday 31 August 2008 at 5:06 pm

Even though life has consumed me this last fortnight, there’s barely been anything in Western Australian politics to report! (This despite it being a bloomin’ election campaign!)

I was repeatedly hearing claims of media critics apparently becoming disillusioned at Alan Carpenter for being arrogant (because, y’know, John Howard or Richard Court weren’t?) and quoting polls to suggest people would go vote for the Liberals.

Oh, right, the Liberals. Their absence of policy is not as dire as it was a fortnight ago — they are headed in a vaguely positive direction with their education policy, and they’ve made reasonable commitments to the bigger towns (notably Kalgoorlie and Bunbury). But beyond that, their policies consist of … er … some mumblings about tougher punishment (have they budgeted more prison funding?) and a piffling $150 bribe to seniors.

Colin Barnett has squandered the three weeks he’s had to show he’s not the same guy we soundly rejected four years ago, and yet the Premier has said he thinks the election will be close!

srsly, wtf?


Mountain-rescue PM!

Thursday 14 August 2008 at 4:17 pm
  • I wish our prime minister had stories like this. I mean, speaking Mandarin is pretty cool, but going mountaineering is undoubtedly more awesome.
  • Meanwhile, leave it to an election campaign to convince Jim McGinty that it’d be prudent to keep a hospital ER in the middle of the city!
  • Also: this post comes to you from Hong Kong airport, where I’m watching a Bloomberg morning report (OMG will the Chinese market drop when the Olympics end?). In between segments there are painfully dry ads from an Indonesian government investment authority; apparently their country is all about pro-business rule of law! If that’s true, it’d be a nice change
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So is there to be any difference?

Saturday 9 August 2008 at 2:59 am

Thank heavens Barnett has dumped the canal idea.

But he is also apparently not very attached to the idea of extended shopping hours, even though he’s talking about it. Thus, cutting aside the normal guff about “focussing on the future” and “look! wasteful spending, e.g. OSS!” … I fail to see any significant policy difference in the Liberal Party. And with everyone’s attention elsewhere, there’s no way he’s going to be able to get anyone to care about announcements.

In other news, the sudden conflict in South Ossetia has me wondering about what modern Russia is becoming, and the misinformation from both sides is awfully depressing, with terrible echoes of Yugoslavia or Chechnya in the 1990s …

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Kicking ’em while they’re down

Thursday 7 August 2008 at 4:40 am

I can’t tell whether the announcement of the next Western Australian election five months early is a well-played stroke of genius, or a tacky piece of cynical opportunism.

Yesterday I was somewhat stunned to see the WA Liberal Party fall into such a state of disarray that they had to go and defrost their ex-leader out of (almost-)retirement, even though they’d had plenty of much better-timed chances to dump Troy Buswell. But no matter how bad he was, I fail to see how such a late change could achieve anything, even if Carpenter did see out his term.

Meanwhile, the Government’s (re-)announcements a month ago of more spending on public transport, hospitals, and other infrastructure did sound awfully election-ey.

So I suppose an election shouldn’t come as a surprise. Now I just wait to see what this campaign’s version of the crazy canal proposal shall be …


“Security”, or something like it

Thursday 7 August 2008 at 2:40 am

Fire exit at the new Vuze office

Vuze recently moved offices (to a temporary location because the real new office isn’t ready, but that’s another story). The new place has lovely Art Deco architecture, plenty of space, funky old-school windows … and a fire exit that does not have a lock.

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