Bravo to Qantas CEO Alan Joyce

For months now the unions have been playing games with Qantas. The national airline was subjected to ‘on again off again flights’. Workers would turn up to work and announce that they were going on strike for an hour or so. This sort of mucking around and disruption by the employees caused many delays and inconveniences for Qantas. And it certainly was causing problems for passengers.

An airline must be able to provide a consistent timetable for connecting flights. But the employees of Qantas did not care about that. They kept on pushing the company to the limit.

Could this go on indefinitely? No company can survive with such blackmailing tactics. Whatever their demands, the employees should have have been prepared to either go on strike totally until Fair Work Australia got involved or continue to work on the days they drew a salary.

Sick of this screwing around by the unions, Qantas called their bluff. Yes, many passengers were inconvenienced yesterday and will be today as well, but the action by CEO Alan Joyce got results. Let’s hope that now they can sort the problem out in a mature fashion.

Times change and with it come changes. Employees in the airline industry has to accept change or more jobs will be lost. It’s called adapting to the present.

As for criticism that Qantas should have given notice that it will ground its fleet, there was a legitimate reason for not doing so. Just as in businesses which have to make certain that a disgruntled or dismissed employee does not interfere with computers etc. Qantas had to ensure that in the heat of the moment some mischief could not be done to its planes. It only takes one hothead to do that sort of damage. That is why Joyce is talking about safety in euphemistic terms.

Occupy Melbourne see sense for now

When one holds a protest one really does not want to alienate the rest of the public. The people of Melbourne had put up with the protesters for a whole week and became fed up with their abuse of democratic freedom.

There were so many different agendas among the protesters that they had become a collective farce.

Some were against this, some were against that, so they all got together to disturb life downtown. No doubt there were some legitimate grievances among them. Not many as I said in my last post, since Australia is a lucky country when compared with the rest of the world.

The problem with the protesters is that they had been highjacked by formal advisers to the Green Party who saw this collection of copycats as an opportunity to disrupt the status quo. There were the usual suspects who wanted to demonise Israel as well, but there’s nothing new in that.

But mainly they wanted to take a stand against stuff. It was happening elsewhere in the world and this generation wanted to become part of something.

Well, it’s not hard to rouse naive folk by telling them that there failings are due to someone else. A protest sounded good. Sitting on your bum and shouting slogans is easier than going to work, isn’t it?

Anyhow, yesterday, they decided that since the rest of Melbourne was so much against their disruption of the Royal visit they would postpone their venture into destroying the evil monarchy. The vote was close, though.

They will continue their agitating on the weekend or whenever, but for the time being let’s hope that Melbourne can enjoy a pleasant day today.

By the way I’m not a monarchist, but that’s another story.

Occupy Melbourne. Just a bunch of puerile copycats!

About 100 policemen have just been brought into the city of Melbourne for a rehearsal. The Queen is coming to town tomorrow and so the protesters have decided to demonstrate against the “evil woman”, big business, small business, medium-sized business, the banking system, the weather, the price of petrol, Qantas, Israel (of course) and anything else they can think of. You name it, they’re against it.

Of course these people are not against the dole which supports them while they demonstrate. They are not against students’ allowances which support them while they lie around in the street chanting. They are not against making promises to the police that they will move on when they are asked to and then refusing to move.

So why are these stupid, stupid, spoiled brats throwing a tantrum on public property and causing problems for ordinary Melbournians downtown?

Well, they envy the uprising in the Arab countries. They envy the Wall St protesters who decided to take a stand against the government’s bail-out of big companies.

These Occupy Melbourne, Sydney, Perth etc groups of brats have very little to gripe about and this is the problem. Things are too good for them here in Australia.

If they don’t want to work, then either mummy and daddy will support them or they will get the dole. If they want to study then this will be free and they will also get paid to do so. Out of the public purse!

This sort of bludging is a shameful abuse of democracy. They throw around the term, “democracy” as if they know what it means. For them it means they want rights. The right to TAKE rather than the right to contribute. You can’t talk to these people about responsibility.

It costs a fortune to police these silly circuses, money that could be spent on the genuinely needy members of our society. But try telling that to these excrescences who will turn up tomorrow to mar the visit of the Queen.

Let’s face it, she won’t be perturbed by their carrying-on. She’s seen all sorts of spectacles in her life and had to keep a straight face when confronted by them. This won’t faze her. The police will cope too. They behaved admirably last week after the squatters broke their promise to move on when asked.

So go ahead you silly buggers, make nuisances of yourselves. You have absolutely no idea how lucky you all are to be living in Australia where the police won’t turn hoses on you, even when you deserve it.

I’ve changed my mind about the ransom of Gilad Shalit

I just received an email from Jerusalem. It contained a photo of the Welcome Home flags for Gilad Shalit. It’s good to have the kidnapped soldier home again and I am happy for his family who waited a long five years for his return.

Shalit was kidnapped in Israel not Gaza while two of his fellow soldiers were killed by Hamas during the capture. He is very thin like a concentration camp survivor. He will never get over those horrid five years as a hostage.

Originally, I was one of those who was against the exchange of 1000 Palestinian criminals for Gilad. It seemed to be a disproportionate response, a heavy price to pay, and I believed that it would lead to more hostage-taking. But I have now changed my mind because it really won’t make any difference to Hamas. Hamas are determined to wreak havoc on Israel anyway whether it be through missiles or suicide bombers or hostage-taking.

I also believe that the Israelis have resigned themselves to living with the status quo after so many failed attempts to find a peaceful outcome with the Palestinians. That is why they decided to return those murderers to Gaza. What’s 1000 murderers more or less? If it’s not those 1000 wretches then there are plenty more being trained right now by their horrid instigators to commit more and more atrocities against Israelis.

While Israel welcomes home one of its own in a dignified and humane manner, there are scenes of hysterical ulutating in Gaza. The terrorists and murderers who were returned to Hamas in the ransom exchange are being hailed as heroes. One of them is a woman, Amana Muna, who chatted up a sixteen-year old Israeli boy in an internet chat room. She lured him to his death.

Some heroine!

And then there was Nasser Yataima who planned the bombing in the Park Hotel in Israel (30 victims killed).

The list goes on and it will go on, because, in my opinion, there will never be peace between Israel and the Palestinians as long as Hamas and its like are determined to destroy Israeli lives.

So let’s save our own. Our Gilad. If we don’t, who will?

Perhaps the mistake that Israel made was in taking those terrorists as prisoners. It costs a lot to house and feed and give medical treatment to prisoners. One only has to compare the emaciated Gilad with the well-nourished Hamas ex-prisoners who are now performing wild victory dances in Gaza. They look fine, don’t they? That’s because Israel treats its prisoners well. Some would say too well, especially when they held a protest not long ago because they couldn’t get cable TV.

I’m not joking. That’s what the protest was about.

It will be interesting to hear how Gilad Shalit was treated. By the look of him, cable TV was not uppermost on his mind.

Equal rights for women in Australia and Saudi Arabia. Wow!

So in five years time Aussie women will be able to take part in frontline combat. Now this is certainly a boost for equal rights in the military. Here comes Private Benjamin, I guess.

No, I’m not poopooing the idea of women fighting hand to hand in combat. On the contrary, I think that on some occasions it will be fantastic since there is nothing more frightening than women with PMT. The Taliban will be shaking in their boots (or sandals) at the prospect of a temperamental shrew hating everybody in the world and ready to kill. If the women are given lots of salty French Fries to eat and they then become bloated with fluid retention, the enemy had better watch out.

Unfortunately for the military, the male soldiers in the Aussie defence forces will cop it as well and they may even feel a little sympathy for the Taliban who are destined to be savaged by these “hormonal” women.

Still, all’s fair in love and war.

Which brings me to another equal rights story. In 2015 women in Saudi Arabia will be given the right to vote. Unfortunately for them, however, they will still have to hitch a lift to the polling booth as they are not allowed to drive a car. Anyone else see the humour in that? I think it’s called irony.

Shame about the Gloss store at Chadstone

Thought I would buy an eyebrow pencil while shopping at the Chadstone Fashion Mall. Was told by the staff in Gloss, a cosmetics and accessory store, that there was no difference between eyebrow and eyeliner pencils. Was persuaded to buy an eyeliner. Left the store unconvinced that the advice had been correct. Decided I had better return the wrong product and was told that there would be no refund. It had been half and hour since I had been sold the wrong product.

I could get a credit or buy something else of a similar value since Gloss’s policy is “no cash refunds”. I was forced to choose something else since the young girls were adamant that Gloss does not give refunds if you have doubts about the product. Mind you, the pencil had been unopened and had not even left the shopping centre.

There was no warning in the Gloss store about not giving a refund and so this came as a surprise to me. This sort of meanness would not occur in other stores such as Priceline, for example. So in future I will shop at a store that cares about its customer service.

The things people do that turn me off

There are some people in this world who feel a powerful bond with other human beings. They love humanity with all its shortcomings. They love to be in crowds with the rest of the world, the closer the better. They sing folk songs about everyone being a sister or a brother to everyone else. “If you need a friend… blah, blah.”

I’m not one of those people. If I see a crowd, I go the other way. If I travel by public transport I distance myself as much as possible. And the same goes for theatres or restaurants and other public places. Quite frankly, other people’s personal habits make me sick. They cough, they sneeze, they snort, they burp, they yawn and they do it all without covering their mouths.

Yesterday, I was disgusted by a woman who was excavating her boyfriend’s earwax with her fingernails. They were sitting opposite me on a tram. That endeavour wore her out. She then went on to yawn and displayed a cavernous gob which reminded me why I’m relieved that I’m not a dentist. Imagine looking at that all day. Well, I guess it could be worse. There are other even more nauseating medical fields, and perhaps the money makes up for it.

It would have to.

Which brings me to what turns me off. You guessed it, it’s lack of manners and we know that manners, courtesy and consideration are alien to many people. They simply don’t know any better. It must be their upbringing and that is unfortunate. But sadly, understanding that they don’t know any different doesn’t make repulsive behaviour easier to take.

I still can’t bear being near somebody who is snorting mucous from the bowels of his or her innards. I can’t stand it when anyone sneezes in my direction. I am not drawn to hug a stranger. Well, you don’t know where he’s been lol.

It really worries me that etiquette and by that I mean basic consideration rather than which correct fork to use with which food, has disappeared. How long has it been since I’ve heard “Excuse me” or “Sorry” when someone bumps into me?

How long has it been since some fellow passenger has noticed that others on the tram may not be interested in his or her boring mobile phone conversation?

I’m stuck with sharing this world with all those inconsiderate excrescences. I’m also fully aware that they are not going to change. So I turn away and fantasise about a Great Flood.

p.s the following bit of my post was added on the 1st October which happens to be AFL Grand Final Day in Melbourne.

Famous author, Alexander McCall Smith has just given an interesting interview on this very subject during his current visit to Australia. He is dismayed by the lack of social values in the U.K. He refers to a broken society in which honesty, decency and good manners have become unfashionable concepts. Moreover, he links these failings with the recent riots in the U.K. One of the demons in the U.K is binge drinking, he says.

We have similar problems here in Australia to the ones that McCall Smith talks about. Young people binge drink and that includes young women as well. The problem here is that alcohol is everywhere and not much happens without a drink. Today, for example, the alcohol outlets are making a fortune because there is going to be a Grand Final of one of the football codes and you cannot watch sport without drinking and drinking and drinking. Not if you are a real “Sportsman” lol.

Hopefully the shopping mall will be empty this afternoon since everybody will either be at the football or glued to the T.V.

Some of my best friends are not Muslims

Ten years after 9/11. The horror of the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York stays with me. I refuse to forgive. I refuse to understand why it happened. I don’t believe that it had nothing to do with Islam–the religion of peace as the Muslims describe it. In fact I don’t care whether Islam is a religion of peace or not. The truth of the matter is that Muslims committed this atrocity and have been committing these atrocities before 9/11 and since then.

Think of Bali and over two hundred deaths there. Think of Madrid and London. Think of India. Think of the school and the theatre in Russia. Notice the common thread?

After 9/11 I happened to visit Paris. It was the first time that I had been confronted by the great number of Muslims in that country. My reaction was one of recoil. I felt threatened. I wanted to get away from them. I wondered how France would fare under these conditions and as it turned out the answer is “not well.”

I have to admit that I don’t like to be prejudiced, but the Muslims make it hard for me to be more tolerant. They didn’t show much outrage when some of their fellow Muslims attacked the Twin Towers. An image of Palestinians dancing in the streets and the women doing those screams of celebration remains etched in my soul.

Why didn’t some of the so-called moderate Muslims come out and shout their condemnation of this atrocity? Why so silent?

Instead, many of them denied that Bin Laden and his fellow murderers had done it. Some of them said that it was because of disaffection with the system. Whatever their grievances, surely there was a better way to complain about things.

I remain extremely angry with Muslims. I resent how they want to change some aspects of our Australian culture to accommodate them. Why is it that they left their Arab countries because they didn’t like how conditions are in those countries, but then they want to change Australia to make it more like the countries which they abandoned?

It doesn’t make sense to me.

I love Australia and don’t want it to become like Europe. The revulsion that I felt when I was in Paris was palpable. The association will always be there. Muslims=9/11 and 9/11=Muslims. A tragedy for the whole world, Muslims included.

Mother feeds baby in no stopping zone

What is the matter with this silly world? I have just sat through two news broadcasts on the TV which aired the story of a woman whose car had been photographed in a “No Stopping Zone.” She was on her way to the airport when her baby mucked up in the car and so she decided to stop her car and feed it, the baby, that is.

She subsequently was sent a parking infringement notice for $120 and she is annoyed about it. Why should she have to pay when she has many expenses? She has better things to do with that $120 than pay a fine for breaking the law.

Apparently, she doesn’t understand that if there is a “No Stopping” notice it means that it is dangerous to park in that spot.

Now this “victim”, Renee Buckley, has already been informed that she can appeal her “special” circumstances. Baby was hungry and couldn’t wait a few minutes to be fed in a safe and legal area.

What would have happened had some car crashed into her as she parked in that dangerous spot? Why did she place her baby in danger like that?

For crying out loud, why is it that some people think they are above the law? And why does the media report such silly stories?

This is most definitely a storm in a B-Cup.

Pathetic joke, I know…but I just couldn’t resist making it.

I return the MacBook Air

The folk at the Apple Store were very gracious when I gave back the computer yesterday. I had no problems getting my refund. After all, they had promised that if I could not get used to the annoying track pad they would let me bring it back.

My previous post had already mentioned that I found it hard to get used to being mouseless. It was just too strange for me to have to do those crazy movements with my fingertips instead of simply clicking the mouse.

Quite seriously, the advantages of having a small and portable computer failed to compensate for the frustration of stuffing things up.

So now I am back to my iMac and it’s good to be happy in familiar territory.

However, I must emphasise that the problem was not with the MacBook Air, nor with the people in the Apple Store. They could not have been nicer.

It simply was a case of what I am used to.

I look forward to the day when Apple can incorporate a mouse with a small resting platform into their MacBook Air. A sort of platform that would jut out when necessary, something that doesn’t require loops and strokes of the fingers to make it work. Then I would love to give it another go.