Friday, January 09, 2015

The AusGrid The... Living in the 1st world.

So here's a set of first world problems.

AusGrid tears up the streets of Newtown, destroying vast swathes of footpaths and neighborhoods in a bid to guarantee the safe delivery of electricity. 

Today at a hint of summer, Newtown, Enmore and Camperdown go down.  Gee thanks, AusGrid. 

The pond calls Energy Australia and a robot says the cause is unspecified. Gee thanks, Energy Australia. 

Bonus: the shutdown destroys the pond's modem.  No replacements can be arranged until Monday. 

For a cost. Gee thanks Optus. 

So the pond pays for the excellent work of AusGrid and Energy Australia.  

Who knows when the pond will return. Though no doubt in due course the pond will return. Thanks to the high tech efforts of the suppliers doing their very best to gouge their customers. 

Well, at least it's not Beirut.  But take care not to step in an AusGrid hole.  


  1. "Doing their very best to gouge their customers". Never a truer word....

    But Tony's 'Open for business'; 'Cutting red and green tape' and all the other BS the Libs spouted. All for the big end of town it seems, the gougers, and none for me and thee.

    Where's the small business strategy (apart from those hoary old Lib shibboleths like minimum wages, penalty rates and Union Power)?

    I'll tell you where. Nowhere. Fuckwits.

    1. This is not a sign of a disrespecting countryside: it is a distress signal. And a contributing stupid major cause of that distress is..., and those closest the throne.

      Certa bonum certamen, says Fitzgerald to the "Craven Mail". In similar vein, likewise that country hick hero Assange. Assange as dad 'n dave type hero ... who'd 'a thunk?

      Qld cockies have the shits with those "shits in cabinet" including Malcolm Turnbull:
      "The Minister for Agriculture Barnaby Joyce attended the meeting in a bitter blue-funk kind of mood that saw him mostly hunched over and staring at the floor. He had given $100 million of financial assistance in a lousy deal where the Government will borrow at 2.75% and loan it back at 3.21%.

      The last thing these people need is another loan: they need a Redevelopment Bank to refinance their own loans: issuing a loan to pay off a loan is nothing more than financial suicide.

      The reality is that Joyce cannot get support from what he calls “the shits in Cabinet” to create a desperately needed Redevelopment Bank so that these farmers can get cheap loans to tide them through to the end of the drought.

      Our sources suggest that those “shits in Cabinet” include Malcolm Turnbull – Minister for Communications and the uber-cool trendy city-centric Liberal in the black leather jacket:, Andrew Robb – Minster for Trade and Investment and the man behind the free trade deal, the man who suddenly acquired three trendy Sydney restaurants almost overnight, the man who seems to suddenly desperate to sell off our farms to China – and one Greg Hunt, Environment Minister and the man who is instantly approving almost every single mining project that is put in front of him."

      The preceeding mostly found or linked here, and here. The Pascoes here.

    2. "There will be a central coordination of rail, port, mining to get coal out quicker - it's very simple," Premier Peter Beattie told reporters on the Gold Coast. ... "[Under Beattie] Queensland coal exports have increased from 59 million tonnes in 1988-89 to 153 million tonnes in 2006-07."

    3. Beattie once marched against apartheid, and Joh's bans. Later, Beattie liked Joh who loved Beattie in return. Liblab, what difference?

    4. More on open for business & cutting red and green tape:

      Premier Peter Beattie called on mining companies to "come on board" to help get the Northern Missing Link rail line built.

      Coal companies step up to develop `northern missing link' - 18 July 2007

    5. In Queensland it's coal, coal, COAL all the way, and anyway you cut it there was and is no separation between the Laberals - bought and sold all.


      From the full page government ad Beattie placed in the Craven Snail the following day:

      "Coal Facts

      In 2005-06, Queensland coal exports totalled 143 million tonnes - worth more than $17.8 billion. That's a 55% increase over the previous year.

      That figure is expected to increase again in 2006-07 to around 165 million tonnes.

      That amount of coal carried on our rail network is also increasing.

      In 1996-97 a total of 90 million tonnes of coal was railed by the system. The expected total for 2006-07 is 156.8 million tonnes.

      And the forecast for 2010 is 234.9 million tonnes. That's an increase of 74% over 10 years and an expected increase over 14 years of 260%."

      Look at these old guys. Yep, what a hoot it all is!

  2. The power fault destroyed your modem....ask them to replace it. They can only say yes or no.

  3. Ms Pond
    The best is yet to come. "Smart Meters".
    We in Melbourne were forced to pay to have them installed (no option). They were supposed to benefit the customer but the reality is that to benefit additional stuff needs to be purchased. Then the supplier cahnges all the rates so it is more expensive to use power when you acctually need it. As part of the "Standard" installation special rates, such as off-peak, are removed.
    Our "smart meter" is so smart that when there was a recent power supply interruption, I rang the supplier to ask when they may reconnect us, they replied they did not know there was a problem. So the meter is so smart it does not even know when there is no power.
    The only advantage to a smart meter is that it now send back my usage to the pwoer supplier on a regular basis. Saving the supplier the inconvenience of actually having to send someone to read the meter and enabling them to bill me more often. For this I paid them.

  4. Dear Dorothy,

    re sldr360 - I too have a so-called "smart" meter. Prior to it's installation I wrote to my local member, Daniel Andrews. I asked him asked a series of questions about its operation & the benefits to me as a consumer. Despite Andrews being a member of the cabinet which approved their roll-out, he flick-passed the questions to the unlamented Minister for Energy and Resources, Peter Batchelor, whose department responded with a standard pamphlet which left me none the wiser.

    As sldr360 has stated, it may be possible to enhance the meter functionality with the purchase of additional equipment so that one can actually see the energy consumption in real time without going outside and standing in the "weather". Unfortunately that does not show me the 'rate', only the cumulative total. Admittedly, I am now able to download my usage data (30 minute blocks) within 24 hours if I so choose which is a minor benefit but other than that I have not identified a single significant benefit to me, the consumer.
    Having had this folly foisted upon me at my expense, I find that I am now paying again. Recently, the energy infrastructure providers were successful in having my rates increased due to alleged costs incurred by the delayed roll-out at the time of the election of the Baillieu government in 2010. Bastards, one & all!

    So, I have a dumb "smart' meter for electricity but not for the other utilities, gas & water. How "smart" is that? What a clever country we live in when we have leaders such as we have. Such limited vision and no technical nous whatsoever! I think I'll go back to bed for the next decade...


    1. Dannosaurus
      In the week before I fled the country I received a letter from my water supplier (it is just too hard to keep up with who is supplying (or not supplying) what in Vic) offering me a"free" new water meter which communicates with the supplier, allowing it to be read remotely.
      I am unsure if this means, as with the "smart" electricity meter a wifi network is set up, or if the meter reader can read remotely as he walks past.
      I guess one thing we can be sure of, as with MIKI, the supplier will set up their own network at additional cost.
      Once this is complete I suppose I can expect a letter from the gas supplier.

    2. Sweet jesus mary & joseph Dannosaurus, first the SMART meters, then the SMART ticketing system called MYKI - the most counter-intuitive, inexplicably complicated public transport billing system since humans stepped out of the ooze.

      Given the option, I would run screaming from anyone system using the word SMART because it will be nothing of the sort. Ever. But of course, the option of choice has been locked up.

      And as you and others point out, we will pay heavily as consumers for the indulgences of these fuckwits, again, and again. I have friends who quite seriously want a Royal Commission into MYKI, believing that long jail sentences are due.

  5. Dorothy your news from Newtown under siege has sent ripples of alarm throughout web. When you win through, as surely you shall, this vid The ABC Biased? and others by friendlyjordies are worth a look - and a laugh to cheer you up.

    Never surrender. And Queensland, we need to talk.... as voter registration closes this afternoon per the regressively altered qld LyingNastyParty more than unfair fascist electoral laws...

    1. Yep, never surrender:

      And Queensland, we need to talk.... as voter registration closes this afternoon per the regressively altered qld LyingNastyParty more than unfair fascist electoral laws...

    2. Alright, blast you queensland!

      (Browser issues again? Yesterday bank and gov were deluged with phone calls as punters online accounts were inoperative to a greater or lesser degree due to some update bug occurrence across numerous browser platforms. I've found one of my bank accounts missing today, but have been assured it shall reappear on Monday when I call some other bank boss buggers [who, unlike drones don't work 24/7] on their secure line...)

  6. The regularity of blown lecky products has reduced to zero since our home went offgrid.

  7. Akerman comes out blasting 'the left' and the ABC, presumably because they sought a range of opinions, some of which Pot Piers doesn't agree with. He compares the Charlie Hebdo massacre with Bolt's conviction for racism.

    It's all about free speech. Just ask Chris Kenny.

    1. Bullshitters.

      BTW, it's TS Eliot's 50th today

  8. Hi Dorothy,

    Whilst the Quran does not explicitly prohibit the depiction of human figures, aniconism (the avoidance of representational artwork depicting living creatures) is widely prevalent in Islam. This adherence is however not peculiar just to Islam.

    Judaism as a religion boasting just one true god, was keen to avoid any link to what it viewed as the idolatry of its polytheist neighbours. Graven Images in particular were particularly frowned upon as being false gods and their prohibition counts as the second of the Ten Commandments. Over time this injunction against depictions has waxed and waned. Sculpture in particular was prohibited but at times two dimensional art has also been banned from representing people.

    The early Christian Church flowing as it did from a Judaic source also disapproved of any hint of idolatry at first. When Constantine started the process of Christianising the Roman Empire, images and sculptures depicting the ancient roman deities were destroyed by zealous groups of Christians. However quite quickly these representations were replaced by portraits of Christ and the saints. These Icons borrowed heavily from Roman Imperial imagery.

    In the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire, Iconography became widespread but as ever there were some who strongly disapproved of the use or misuse of these images, considering the attempt to make a "lifeless image" was an affront to the creator. This led to periods of Iconoclasm, where instead of veneration, Icons were seen as blasphemous and were destroyed. Interestingly in the 6th and 7th centuries this Byzantine Iconoclasm was paralleled in Judaism. Several synagogues in the West Bank at this time removed any figurative elements from their floor mosaics leaving just inanimate symbols instead.

    It is probably no coincidence that this conflict over images being either holy or blasphemous occurred just as Islam was beginning. Indeed some believe that a young Muhammad would have been exposed to the concept of aniconism whilst accompanying his uncle on mercantile journeys to Syria.

    The antagonism to representational art and in particular to religious images appears to become more pronounced during times of religious turmoil and zealotry.

    The rise of Protestant reformers in the 16th century, invoking the prohibition of idolatry and the manufacture of graven images, led to iconoclastic riots throughout Europe as opposition to the Catholic Church grew.

    The Taliban when in power in Afghanistan banned photography and destroyed non-Muslim artefacts, most notably the shocking vandalism of the Buddhas of Bamiyan.

    What is old is new again.


    1. In Saudi Arabia, a strange combination of capitalistic greed and religious fundamentalism is engaged in state-endorsed cultural vandalism of some of the most holiest sites in Islam.

      The ruling Wahhabi sect perceives historical sites and the veneration of the prophet Muhammad as encouraging sinful idolatry.

      In Medina, the mosque which belonged to the prophet's grandson was dynamited and there are plans to pull down three 7th century mosques.

      In Mecca the house of one of Muhammad's wives has been demolished in order to make space for public lavatories. His birthplace may disappear too.

      Many of the ancient buildings in the city are being demolished to make room for highly profitable hotels and shopping malls.

      Even the graceful Ottoman porticos of the Grand Mosque surrounding the Kaaba, are being bulldozed to make way for an enlarged concrete edifice reminiscent of a multi-storey car park.


    2. Hi Anon,

      It strikes me, that a puritanical misanthropic attitude, along with a wish to be seen as "holier than thou" are common traits amongst the uber-religious, independent of what religion they may actually practise.

      It probably explains the myriad of schisms and splinter groups that litter all the main stream religions. Believing that you and your fellow zealots have the only hot line to your chosen deity is unlikely to result in an attitude of tolerance and forgiveness.

      Thinking one is the instrument of a god, rarely has a happy outcome for ones neighbours.

      "Don't talk to me of God. We killed God at Magdeburg." The Last Valley


    3. Hi Anon,

      The 1979 seizure of the Grand Mosque was an early example of Wahabbist extremism in recent times. It certainly scared the House of Saud shitless. Fortunately for them the Russian Invasion of Afgahnistan gave them the perfect vehicle to rid themselves of these troublesome fanatics.

      Exporting young restless extremists to fight the "rooskies" in jihad was a win/win situation for House Saud, especially as it was with the blessing of the Reagan administration.

      The blow back has been, the Taliban, AQ and the perpetual "War on Terror" (patent pending).

      There are a lot of unsubstantiated rumours surrounding the siege, the French participation, the Pakistani participation and the wild story that the authorities flooded the lower levels of the mosque where the militants were holding out and then via mobile generators electrocuted the last remnants of resistance. Robert Fisk thinks it not so much.


    4. As if on cue, along comes a perfect example of aniconism and po faced religious intolerance;



  10. According to The Guardian “George Brandis has described his data retention laws as an urgent and vital safeguard against terrorism, saying the Paris attacks show the west “faces a profound threat that is likely to be with us for a long time”.

    But all French ISPs track personal web-browsing activities, monitoring what websites you visit, when you visit them and who you send emails to. This data must then be stored for at least one year after you leave the ISP’s service and be made available to law enforcement agencies.”

    Data retention didn’t help the French, George. Anymore useless ideas, George? Become useful, George, and help restore Dorothy's internet access. You do know what is the internet, don't you George?

    1. Ah, it was wonderful to see all those VIPs lined up for their short photo-op walk with Hollande yesterday. Bastions of media freedom all. Why, to mention only a few, there were representatives present from the governments of Australia, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey... So bloody WONDERFUL to see.

    2. Ok then Mr AG (Awful George) how about vital safeguards against state terrorism perpetrated on netizens?

      Atrocious George, could begin by describing his misgovernment's position on this sort of thing:

      "Badawi's case is more complex than others because the problem does not just involve a few tweets, but is mainly about his having founded the (website) "Liberal Free Saudi Network" in 2006. Badawi has also has repeatedly criticized not only radical Islamic preachers, but also the Saudi regime which has never wanted to stop them."

      "Down with this sort of thing." - Father Ted

  11. News update.
    Some of the non lame-stream media commentators and websites are suggesting, and pointing to evidence that the Paris Charlie killings were a false flag operation. Paul Craig Roberts for one.

  12. This is funny.

    After a Fox News terrorism expert claimed that everyone in Birmingham is a Muslim and sharia law is being enforced. Even the road signs have to be in Arabic.

    Fox journo's don't have a sense of humour and are threatening to sue!


  14. On Jan 9, Murdoch twittered:

    “Maybe most Moslems peaceful, but until they recognize and destroy their growing jihadist cancer they must be held responsible.”

    On Jan 10 the Fox News minion Jeanine Pirro exploded in a loopy loony outburst which must have pleased her manic master.


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