Abbott says climate change is crap. Do farmers agree?

Abbott says climate change is crap. Do farmers agree?

I spent yesterday in the Legislative Chamber of NSW Parliament House at the GAP Summit on  Food Sustainability, International Food Markets & Agriculture. We heard lots about Australia’s fragile soils and the challenges of managing land beset by drought and floods. We also heard a lot about Australia’s adaptive, innovative and resourceful farmers. Today I read that Tony Abbott,...

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If confectionery is banned, what will tempt us?

If confectionery is banned, what will tempt us?

In England, people supporting a campaign called Junk Free Checkout is on a mission to have confectionery removed from the supermarket till area. Parents hate being pestered by their kids and many adults find it impossible to resist temptation when it’s in such close proximity and, often cheaper than elsewhere. In the Independent article ‘Sweets at supermarket tills are ‘fuelling...

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How can compulsory voting be a good thing?

How can compulsory voting be a good thing?

I thought democracy was about having the right to vote, not being compelled to vote. How can a vote be meaningful if it’s a random choice made by someone with no interest in politics and no awareness or understanding of the choices on offer ? Surely people who choose to vote when they have that as an option are more likely to have an actual opinion? I wonder how many of the people who voted...

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Are parents really to blame for everything?

Are parents really to blame for everything?

I’m going to be promoting Poor me!, the book I wrote with Piers, at a series of library talks so I wanted to check the latest statistics on young people and debt. I was interested to see that the articles like this one in the Herald Sun reported the latest Roy Morgan findings that young Australians carry a high proportion of debt to income – but I do wish they wouldn’t take...

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Apple abandons skeuomorphism. Are you sad to see it go?

Apple abandons skeuomorphism. Are you sad to see it go?

I just discovered that there’s a word for things like a dustbin icon and a notepad function that looks like a notepad. According to this article  from IDG, it’s skeuomorphism – the art of making things look like something else. Steve Jobs loved it but, apparently, Apple is now moving towards a more simplified design. I wouldn’t miss the wooden bookcase or the compass but...

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Another bizarre study of alcohol consumption

Another bizarre study of alcohol consumption

According to this article, public health experts have found that heavy drinking among the elderly is a hidden problem. Recommendations include halving the safe limit guidelines for pensioners despite the fact that chronic pain, loneliness and bereavement were identified as likely to lead to heavier drinking in later life. Well, that makes sense. I also find it worrying that the findings are based...

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Lost and gone for ever – my Gmail inbox

Lost and gone for ever – my Gmail inbox

One of the things I like best about gmail is how easy it is to use labels to keep messages organised. They’re easy to create and remove; in fact, a little too easy. This morning, a single hasty click seems to have removed the contents of my inbox for ever. Luckily, because I do keep this particular inbox well organised, just five or six have disappeared. If it had been my other gmail...

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If you’re a male Gen Xer, you’re king of the world!

If you’re a male Gen Xer, you’re king of the world!

The walls of prejudice are closing. Ageism is becoming more obvious as the population gets older but it seems it’s also dangerous to be too young. Speaking in a NAB article, Michael Hyatt, Director Human Capital Advisory at Deloitte Australia, says that many employers are still working on the assumption that older workers are set in their ways and find it difficult to adapt to new work...

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Of sausages, dogs and a new old bike

Of sausages, dogs and a new old bike

If you’ve ever read Enid Blyton or any other children’s books of the era, you’ll be very familiar with the image of delivery boys on bikes with big baskets. Hilarity often ensued, generally along the lines of sausages falling out of a package and the boy being chased by all of the street dogs (yes, there used to be dogs wandering the streets, too). I’m gratified to see that the clean,...

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Oh no! I have cell phone elbow!

Oh no! I have cell phone elbow!

The physio told me the pain in my inside left elbow was called ‘golfers elbow’ but didn’t have any sensible explanation as to why I should suffer as I’ve never touched a golf club in my life. However, I do spend a lot of my time doing phone interviews and I’ve recently noticed that, after half an hour or so, it hurts to straighten my arm. Working on the assumption...

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