JOE6PACK AND BUSHFIREBILL CANBERRA FIFO 22/02/2015

 

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ON A WHIM AND BECAUSE I HAVEN.T FLOWN ON A CERTAIN TYPE OF AIRCRAFT BEFORE MYSELF( AND I AM DRAGGING ALONG BUSHFIREBILL) WILL BE IN CANBERRA ON THE 22/02/2015.FOR A FLYIN FLY OUT VISIT.

WHO WANTS TO MEET UP FOR LUNCH/DRINKIES. ?

HOPEFULLY OUR CANBERRA RESIDENTS CAN SUGGEST SOMEWHERE GOOD FOR A MEET AND GREET.

WE ARRIVE AT 10.00 AM FLY OUT AGAIN AT 5.00PM.

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THIS POST WILL REMAIN A STICKY SO ANY QUERIES, QUESTIONS,SUGGESTIONS KEEP THEM TO THIS THREAD.

SHOULD BE A HOOT

 

 

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Fully Flushed Friday Raffles

“It was said of Caesar Augustus that he found a Rome of brick and left it of marble. It will be said of Gough Whitlam that he found Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane unsewered, and left them fully flushed.”

Neville Wran

From Laurie Oakes’ book Power Plays: The Real Stories of Australian Politics:

Happy 80th, Gough! Now, about your funeral

16 July 1996

Here’s a cheerful thought for Gough Whitlam as he celebrates his 80th birthday – a spectacular funeral is being planned for him. Not that anyone is in a rush, mind you. Fortunately, the great man is in such robust health that official approval of arrangements for a state funeral fit for such a legend will very likely not be required until well after Prime Minister Mark Latham, a former Whitlam staffer and protégé, moves into the Lodge. But it is best to be prepared. Something special will be called for – not at all the sort of thing that can be thrown together overnight. So an informal group of family and friends has been discussing the matter, on and off, for some years. The plans are stowed away in a file kept by the former prime minister’s eldest son, Nick. Big, wonderful, over-the-top plans, like the man himself; mostly serious, but with an element of tongue in cheek, as you’d expect.

Winston Churchill issued instructions for his own funeral. Whitlam is not that involved, even though the plans are of Churchillian proportions. In fact, apparently he goes uncharacteristically quiet when the matter of funeral arrangements is mentioned in his presence. But he has made one major contribution: his wishes on the music that should be played are part of Nick’s file.

* * * * * * *

So . . . the funeral plans. One of the pieces Whitlam has selected is Va, pensiero, the slaves’ chorus from Verdi’s opera Nabucco which gave expression to the Italian people’s aspirations for liberty and self-government. Va, pensiero became the theme song of Garibaldi’s followers during the Risorgimento – the uprising to unite Italy. The second piece he has nominated is more esoteric, but no less Whitlamesque – The March of the Consular Guard at Marengo, by an obscure French composer, celebrating one of Napoleon’s great victories. Whitlam was fascinated by Napoleon even as a child, but his sister, Freda, once told me that it was not so much the warlike side of Napoleon that appealed to young Gough as the French emperor’s civic achievements and the legal system he established.

Abraham Lincoln’s funeral is the loose model for what is being planned. The idea is that the main ceremony would be held in Sydney Town Hall, after which a catafalque bearing the coffin would proceed to the historic Mortuary Station, built in 1869 and heritage-listed. Lincoln became the first president to lie in state at the US Capitol rotunda before being carried home to Springfield, Illinois, by train, with stops along the way for people to pay their respects . . .

Not surprisingly, the funeral will be private. But I bet the memorial service on 5th November will go close to breaking records for attendance:

This evening, then, let’s charge our glasses and drink to the memory of one of Australia’s greatest-ever prime ministers. Let’s have music, dancing, merriment, and celebration of the light that has been, and the light that will come again as long as the men and women of Australia keep the faith.

(Image Credit: Australian War Memorial)

(Image Credit: Sydney Morning Herald)

(Image Credit: Bytes)

(Image Credit: News Limited (sorry))

(Image Credit: ABC)

(Image Credit: Courier Mail)

(Image Credit: SBS)

(Image Credit: ABC)

(Image Credit: Wentworth Courier)

Ave et vale Gough Whitlam

Vale, Comrade!

(Image Credit: Whitlam Institute)

whitlam it’s time

Gough Whitlam became Leader of the Opposition in February 1967. From that moment – at the age of 11 – I became truly, madly, deeply passionate about politics. In 1969 I argued with all my schoolmates, almost all from conservative families, about how important it was that the ALP should win the approaching federal election.

It was close, but not close enough.

By 1972, the vibe had changed.

On 2nd December, my mum and I were staying with my aunt in Roseville, Sydney – another very blue-rinse Liberal household. My aunt and her husband (an obstetrician) threw an election party that evening. The place was crawling with conservatives, the TV was on full blast, much liquor was consumed and, as the evening progressed, the faces of hosts and guests became longer and longer . . .

. . . while mamma and moi had to look as serious as possible, though we wanted to dance, to scream, to hug everyone and say, At last!

What he achieved in just under three years in two terms as Prime Minister was outstanding. From Senator John Faulkner’s tribute on the occasion of Gough Whitlam’s 92nd birthday:

Gough Whitlam has been a towering figure in the Australian Labor Party for longer than I can remember. When I first joined the ALP Gough was Leader of the Opposition. My first federal election campaign was 1972: I felt as if I spent every weekend of that year knocking on doors. I freely admit, it was quite abnormal behaviour for a teenager! But that campaign, which became part of Australia’s political history by sweeping away 23 years of conservative government and making ‘It’s Time’ part of our language, was one we all knew mattered. The excitement and enthusiasm of that election will never be forgotten by any of the countless party members and volunteers who knew that the surging tide of Labor support was not only about a change of government, but about changing the country – for the better.

And ladies and gentlemen, we were right.

The list of the Whitlam Government’s legislative reforms is familiar to all of us:

– improving the position of women and our indigenous population;
– introducing Medibank, the precursor to Medicare;
– needs-based funding for schools and free university education;
– introducing the Trade Practices Act;
– ending conscription;
– diplomatic and trade relations with the People’s Republic of China.

In Opposition, in Government, and in decades since, Gough has remained indefatigable, irrepressible, and unflagging.

For more than six decades in politics, Gough Whitlam has aimed at targets higher than personal success or vindication. His energy and enthusiasm combined with the continuing powerful relevance of his goals have made him a hero to many Australians – including to me – and an iconic figure in Australia’s
political landscape . . .

On 11th November 1975 I was at home, studying for an exam (Succession, I think) the next day. I put the radio on to hear the news, and could not believe my ears. At first I thought it was a joke.

(Image Credit: National Archives of Australia)

Then I realised that something huge had just happened, so I raced down to (old) Parliament House in my VW. So yes, I was there – even if it was after that speech:

Bill Shorten has put it well:

Gough Whitlam offered us a vision of what Australia might be — a modern, multicultural nation, where opportunity belongs to everyone.

Free university education and universal healthcare. The Racial Discrimination, Aboriginal Land Rights and the Family Law Act. Protection of the Great Barrier Reef from oil drilling.

Gough ended conscription, the death penalty and he made Advance Australia Fair our national anthem. He put our suburbs at the centre of national debate.

Gough Whitlam spent his entire political life reaching for higher ground – he redefined our country and changed the life of a generation, and generations beyond.

He inspired us all in some way and he will continue to inspire us.

There will be more tears shed for Gough Whitlam today than perhaps any other leader in Australian history.

Our thoughts are with his family – a family that has given so much to our nation. Especially Margaret, a great Australian in her own right.

SHIRTFRONT FRIDAY RAFFLES

Hello once again patrons to another edition of Friday Night Raffles.

In light of the one of the most monumentally stupid idiotic remarks a so called Prime Minister of Australia could make I give you a little montage of how it has received.

 

The Idiot gets the ball rolling. What a tool

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Putin hears about it

After changing his undies from uncontrollable laughter he responds

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The Russkies don,t seem too happy with The Idiot,and suggest he may be diseased.

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switchback-abbott-ratMaybe this will be another little nail into the coffin of the Stupid incompetent idiotic moron that sadly is the Prime Minister of Australia, The day he is gone cannot come soon enough.

 

BTW  It’s Raffle Night And

 

As it is one of my favourite times of the year we will be having not just A Melbourne Cup Sweep but also one for the Caulfield cup Tomorrow and Cox Plate the following week .

I will post when the draw opens early on the sat morning. First in best dressed. Suitable prizes will be awarded to the winners .

 

Good Luck to all