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So the wanna-be fascists and assorted Useful Idiots of Corpocracy are busy telling us, over and over again, how Nationalised Health Care is not just wrong in practice, it's wrong in theory, and it's just plain morally wrong. They warn us of encroaching socialism, they complain that Britain's NHS is increasingly inefficient (of course, it would be crass to point out that the rot really set in when Thatcher set about rebuilding it in her own Darwinist image — where the NHS suddenly had to compete against itself, thus killing all community and social concern — and hammered by the genially incompetent Labour, who removed everything which still worked).

They say that the Tea Party protesters are all kind-hearted humanitarians, just looking out for the little guy. Well, except insofar as they're almost to a man arguing vehemently against their own best interests, which doesn't make me give too high an estimate for the average IQ at a Tea Party rally. And the next time some Libertarian douche tells you that Libertarians are kind hearted and give to charity and care for their less fortunate neighbours, yeah, you can go ahead and call them a fucking liar to their face.


And the next time a Corporatist Useful Idiot tells you that the US system does not have any endemic problems, and that people get good care out of the compulsory Private Health Insurance model, yeah, you can call them a liar to their face as well. Because the Insurance Companies are not contributing to the Health Care system, they are parasites upon it. Their concern is not the health of their clients, and if it ever was, it has not been for a very long time: they are Corporations, and their legally mandated first and only concern is to their shareholders. To this end, they make really good profits if it is a legal requirement for everyone to give them money, and even more again if they can manage to find a way to never have to pay any out.

The US system is one of the least efficient Health Care systems on the planet, and if you were to plot outcome/cost, it would probably end up bang in the middle of the Third World. Sure, if you've got the cash, you can get the best care on the planet. And if you've almost got the cash, then you can enjoy your recovery on the streets with your homeless family. And if, like the vast majority of Americans, including those mindless idiots at the Tea Party rallies, you don't have the ready cash, well then I hope you like dying on that street, because the emergency rooms are long since filled up and overflowing with all the other people who can't afford to see a proper doctor or afford hospital admission.



The only reason we have it so good in Australia, as far as I can figure it, the only reason, is because the Insurance Companies have competition: single payer public hospitals and public subsidy of doctor's visits in the form of Medicare.

And of course, those Insurance Companies claim that it's ‘uncompetitive’ to have actual competition (they'd much rather have the US Oligopoly situation, where it doesn't matter how much you treat your ‘clients’ like human landfill, the other guys are all exactly as bad). And the usual Useful Idiots from the IPA and CIS and Sydney Institute come out and pretend that this lie is not a lie.

Fuck that. We do not need, we do not want a US-style clusterfuck to happen to our Health Care System. And if we want to avoid a UK-style clusterfuck to happen, we need to undo all the Howard-era and Thatcher-inspired managerialist and pseudo-competitive crap now, before the rot becomes unrepairable.

There is hope for the Australian system. I'm not sure there is hope for America.
catsidhe: (Default)
Shorter Sarah Palin: Terrorists are only terrorists if they're Muslims or Democrats. White Republicans can not be terrorists, nor do they ever support terrorism.

The Haneef case. It turns out that after he was arrested at the airport (at which point they were actually justified in their action), it was determined that he would be kept until they could prove he did something. Even the withdrawal of his visa and immigration internment was part of the strategy, not just a last-minute panic reaction. Those of us who said at the time that it was a fix-up? Turns out we were right.
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Howard dismisses housing 'crisis' claims

Well, that's short and sweet. Let's dissect this vignette of Australian politics:
Prime Minister John Howard has told Parliament there is not a housing crisis in Australia.
[Oh? On what basis does he make this interesting claim? Given that I have precisely as much chance of owning my own home as I do of winning the lottery, and for the same reason.]


Mr Howard says a true housing crisis is when there is a sustained drop in the value of house prices.
[... ?!?!? WTF? Ah, so a bubble deflating (or, gods forbid, bursting) is a CRISIS!!! The average person being unable to own a home at all, and increasingly unable to afford renting anywhere inside a 40km circle from the city, is not. Ah. Good. My situation is obviously not a problem, it is an indication that I am a shiftless goober, who must suck up the rewards of having not been born in time to be able to afford a home when it was possible to do so.]


In response to a question from Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd, he accused Labor MPs of using cheap language to score political points.
[Because the Liberals never do that.]


"It behoves those who sit opposite not to wish for a crisis that, Mr Speaker, does not exist," he said.
[Again, the CRISIS would be if overblown and inflating prices out of any resemblance to actual costs were to return to sane levels. A CRISIS would be if all those Babyboomers started losing money on their seventh investment property. That an entire generation is beggaring and endebtening itself in the increasingly vain hope of owning a home is not a crisis.]


"For the Leader of the Opposition to use careless language Mr Speaker is aggravating, rather than helping the situation."
[The situation, remember, that doesn't exist. Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia.]



I will take immense pleasure in doing my small part in making John Winston Howard homeless. When he gets around to deigning to allow us to, of course.
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Money not motivating factor behind lease signing: Brough

Mal “They're like children, honestly!” Brough has signed a 99-year lease deal with Galarrwuy Yunupingu over his people's traditional land. Money was not a part of the negotiations, says Brough, only the opportunities available to his people.

Well, yes. But don't make the mistake of thinking that Yunupingu went into this bright-eyed and optimistic. As is usual with Propaganda, the kick in the tail is not omitted, but is buried in the penultimate sentence, where it is hoped no-one will get around to reading it. Quote:
He is being given the option of compulsory acquisition under the Northern Territory intervention or signing over to a 99-year lease.


That's a hell of a ‘choice’, isn't it? Yunupingu signed that lease under extreme coercion: sign, or lose your lands altogether. Sell your birthright to the government in return for the right to continue living there, or else we'll take it anyway, and you, and your people, are fucked.

Yes, I can imagine the discussion about the opportunities available to Yunupingu's people: be a shame if we were forced to turf them off our land once we are forced to evict you. 'Course, if you signed this little piece of paper, none of that need happen, does it?



And, of course, the ABC displays its Stalinist left-wing bias again, sucking up to the left-wing bleeding hearts like it always does, making things so unnecessarily difficult for the Government.

Wait, what?



That dull drumming sound you hear is me beating my head on the desk. Again.
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John Howard declares that there is no such thing as the “working poor” if he says that there isn't.

I mean, he pushes the whole WorkChoices thing predicated on it making it easier for people to get entry-level jobs (you know, those low-paid menial ones), largely by making it possible for the pay and conditions of these jobs to be even lower and more onerous than they were, and easier for people to be churned if they make a fuss. This is in conjunction with the definition of ‘employed’ as having work for more than an hour per week.

But no, Ratbastard doesn't personally know any poor people, so it can't be a real problem, can it?


I can't find the words adequate to describe everything I find wrong with what Howard said here.
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ISPs try to tell the government to shut up and listen for once. It doesn't seem to work.

You see, the article head is absolutely correct: “ISP-level filters 'unworkable'”. They are precisely as unworkable as they were the last time some ignorant dropkick suggested this. And the time before that. (Wasn't it Beazley that time?) And the umpteen dozen times before that.

Maybe we should propose some sort of plebiscite which legally prohibits from proposing complicated and ultimately futile technical ‘solutions’ to undemonstrated and unprovable non-problem, when they can't even spell the name of the technology in question, let alone understand the simplest part of it.

If Senator Coonan wants to stand up and embarrass herself in public like this again, she should have to pass a test first, demonstrating a basic comprehension of, say, the ISO 7-layer networking model (details of where the model fails, and how, not required but give extra credit), and a quick description of how TCP/IP works (in terms of handshaking and conversations: packet diagrams give extra credit).

I really have had it up to here with people who don't know what I do — who would need several years of intensive training just to understand how very little they do understand — and yet feel the need to tell me how to do it. There's a lot of it about.

Pointy Haired Bosses are everywhere. Especially in Parliament.

finally, in closing, ... )

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