More Chutzpah from Muslims

Somebody once asked a wise man for a definition of chutzpah. “Imagine,” he replied, “that a man murders both his parents and at his trial begs the jury to be lenient towards him because he is an orphan. That’s chutzpah.” The closest translation that the English language has of “chutzpah” is “hide.”

The Muslims here in Australia are demonstrating a humungous chutzpah when it comes to their education. You have to laugh… Continue reading


“Notes on a Scandal” by Zoë Heller- a review.

Popular travel writer and social commentator, Bill Bryson, said he had difficulty writing about Australia in his book “Downunder” because he likes this country. He said it was much easier to criticise than to praise. After you have said that something is good, that’s about it. As it turns out, Bryson’s admiration for Australia resulted in a book that was less humorous and certainly not as entertaining as his previous works.

In the same way that Bryson could not do his usual acerbic shtick in “Downunder”, I’m having trouble writing about “Notes on a Scandal”. I liked it too much to pick it to bits. Continue reading

Not the Best and Brightest after all

I know that I have made fun of the imminent Talkfest of 1000 of our best and brightest going to Canberra to discuss ideas for the future of Australia. I suggested that the date of the 2-day Talkfest should be changed to April the First.

It now looks as if that might have been a better date than the end of April. As it turns out, the Talkfest clashes with the first two days of Passover so it looks as if Jews will not be able to attend. That is a serious mistake on Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd’s, part.

Never mind. The Jews will simply have to miss out on this auspicious occasion and in a way, Australia will have to make do with the offerings of other citizens. Can’t help thinking, though, that had this error of judgement been directed at the Muslims there would have been a few Aussie flags burned and several effigies of our Prime Minister would have been cut to shreds in the streets of Lakemba.

The organisers of the Talkfest should regard themselves as being very lucky indeed. I also suspect that when it comes to Muslim sensitivities Kevin Rudd would have quickly changed the date.

The Truth about “Suite Française”

Last year I wrote a sceptical review of “Suite Française” by Irene Nemirovsky which was not well received by readers from In it I questioned whether the novel had any value as an account of the Holocaust. I am sticking to my claim and now I have support from a new publication about Nemirovsky. So it is with some vindication and a feeling of “I told you so” that I am now posting the original review which sparked an outrage in some circles. Continue reading

The Charge of the Bright Brigade- Rudd’s talkfest cont.

Yesterday I pointed out why having 1000 of the best and brightest minds descending on Canberra on one long weekend sounds like a daft idea. Too many people all at one time trying to offer solutions to this country’s problems is no way to actually listen and learn. The problem of volunteers having to pay their own way after having been selected to attend made no sense to me either. The impression that our Prime Minister was procrastinating by holding far too many talkfests instead of getting down to business was worrying me and still is.

So here is my suggestion on how the public can have an input into problems in our country. Continue reading