Is Colin Barnett as arrogant as his detractors claim?

July 31, 2014
Every politician seems to develop a public persona over time. Sometimes it corresponds strongly to his actual personality. But at other times it's very distant. 

Take the nerdy uncle persona of Kevin Rudd. He was always seen as a bit of a dag, but a brainy guy who sincerely had the nations's best interests at heart. He was astonishingly popular for quite some time. Remember how often he was mobbed at shopping centres by people desperate to take selfies with him? 

But slowly his true character emerged. Not only was he completely out of his depth when it came to making crucial decisions -- he was clever, but not wise -- he was also duplicitous, vindictive and a borderline narcissist.

As always, the media has a lot to do with how these perceptions arise. Being overwhelmingly of the Left and generally a pretty lazy, gutless bunch, hacks are often happy to mouth the hateful lies peddled by the Greens and various unionist thugs, as well those sanctimonious handwringers in the "compassion" industry. 

This has clearly happened with Colin Barnett. The claim that he is arrogant is articulated -- or rather, shrieked -- at numerous bolshie demos and pretty much any other event that has a mic these ghastly blowhards can grab and use to express their idiotic views. 

So now this perception is often alluded to in articles like this one

It's just so inaccurate. I heard Barnett speak to Geoff Hutchinson this morning. While the word humble didn't spring immediately to mind, he was certainly respectful to callers -- even those who didn't return the favour. 

There was even one idiot shark hugger, for example, who called up to bleat about the fact that a couple of guppies and a flathead (or some other negligible quantity of marine lowlife) had been murdered by drum lines meant for sharks. If I were in his position, I would have been tempted to tell her sod off and not waste my time. But he was polite to her. 

Colin Barnett is no more arrogant than Tony Abbott is misogynous. These are just hateful lies peddled by vindictive haters who have lost every big argument and know it.

Will PIAF's giant puppets for Anzac subvert the dominant paradigm?

July 26, 2014
There's a proposed Perth International Arts Festival production that sounds very intriguing. It will be part of the Anzac Centenary commemorations and will feature some giant puppets expertly crafted by Frenchmen.

Now, this sounds extremely unusual. Don't know about you, but the first thing that comes to my mind when someone says "giant puppet" is stupid shouty bolshie protest. I also think: crap creations that don't look remotely like the eeevil hate figures they're meant to represent (namely...
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Barnett and Buswell are like Martin and Lewis

July 23, 2014
Troy Buswell is in the news again, this time over alleged hush money paid to a woman whose car he smashed into on that notorious night of drunkenness several months ago. Yet again, Premier Colin Barnett is exasperated by his friend's behaviour.

This time he's even come out and directly criticized the decision to offer the woman money. He's also expressed his frustration over the fact that Buswell hasn't personally paid for the damage to his ministerial car.

This ambivalent reaction is typical...
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Was removing Rolf Harris's plaques, paintings and music overly harsh?

July 22, 2014
The powers that be in Perth certainly didn't waste any time in ripping up that plaque in honour of Rolf Harris that had been nestled in the pavement of St Georges Terrace for several decades (photos below). And other local, interstate and even international organizations made similarly swift decisions regarding what to do with his various honours, paintings and music. 

Some people think that this response to the guilty verdict in his trial has been overly harsh. Take this opinion piece from To...

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Perth's traffic woes prove we're now in the big league

July 15, 2014
Lately the issue of transport in Perth has been dealt with repeatedly in the local media. Clearly, the relentless rise in the city's population has put considerable pressure on our roads, highways and public transport system.

It's something that I've been acutely aware of lately -- probably more so than many other residents -- because I don't have a car and get around solely using public transport. Also, having lived in Sydney for about eight years in two stints over the last fifteen, the chan...
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Mark McGowan's medical marijuana push a tactical error

July 6, 2014
Alannah MacTiernan isn't the only Labor politician moving alarmingly to the green left. There are clearly others in WA Labor who've been afflicted with this tendency, including the leader Mark McGowan. His endorsement of medical marijuana is a case in point.

I have no strong feelings about this proposed policy. If it helps people who are suffering, great. But he should remember that a big chunk of the population have a strong emotional reaction when it comes to the issue of drugs. It doesn't ...
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Dr Philip Nitschke's creepy pro-death crusade

July 4, 2014
Not surprised to learn that Dr Philip Nitschke is in hot water again over his passionate crusade for the right to die "with dignity". (I always think that phrase is kinda weird in and of itself, don't you?  Death is many things, but dignified is not one of them. I mean, how many humans live with dignity, let alone die with it?)

This latest scandal involves a Perth man called Nigel Brayley. In a dark space for various reasons, but certainly not terminally ill, he asked for Nitschke's assistance...
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Memories of Rolf Harris harder to remove than plaques and memorials

July 3, 2014
Like so many people I have been fascinated by the trial of former local hero Rolf Harris, long known as the Boy from Bassendean. Now that his sinister predation of young girls has been proven in a court of law, we all have to recalibrate our view of him.

Government and business organizations have to work out what to do with various plaques and memorials made in honour of the entertainer. After all these symbols don't just celebrate his work but his character as well. Now that this has been fou...
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Anti-shark cull threats end hook supply contract

June 28, 2014
The shark wars seem to be hotting up again now. Sure, there haven't been any major demos like there were during the summer. But that has much to do with the fact that in winter there's so much less beach-going. And with related risks not on the public's radar so much, there's less media attention. And it's that attention that the demonstrators crave more than anything. 

Still, there has been an interesting call in which a talkback caller told the Premier the"gloves were off". He then contradic...
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Alannah MacTiernan gets even greener with euthanasia push

June 25, 2014
There has been a lot of fervent internal debate about the direction that Labor is heading in. Much of this has been focused on the inordinate power that union heavies wield. There's another battle that's ideologically related to this, but tends to get less attention. And that's the tendency of some Labor pollies to go further and further to the Left, into wacky Greens territory. 

Alannah MacTiernan is the best example of this trend in this state. Not so long ago she was blathering about the he...
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