Friday, July 15, 2011

#271: Ball of Confusion

Dear Australian Public,

You are a New Zealander’s dream – you are a flock of easily fucked sheep. You are stupid enough to buy into Tony Abbotts campaign designed to attack the incumbent PM on a basis of gender, not policy. You are stupid enough to buy into a campaign based upon sexism and outright bullying. And why is this?

Says it all
Because you have absolutely no comprehension of history. In the early 1990s John Hewson ran a campaign on the back of a proposed Goods and Services Tax. Both the GST and Hewson were soundly defeated by Paul Keating, and Hewson stood down, or was sacked – take your pick - and was replaced by John Howard. When asked about the GST, Howard stood before a media conference, at Tweed Heads, in May 1995 and said the following;

“There is no way a GST will ever be part of our policy. Never, ever. It’s dead; it was killed by the voters in the last election.”

Then, in 1996, just prior to the election, he stated;

“My government will not introduce any new taxes and will not increase existing taxes.”

By June 2000 Howard was busily selling the GST to the nation and insisting that prices would not increase. Lies built upon lies.

Fucking shameful behaviour from a weak prick not fit to lead the country
I don’t recall anyone protesting so vigorously against Howard, or calling him a ‘bitch’ (I guess the male counterpart would be ‘bastard’) in public, let alone the opposition leader standing, proudly and beaming, in front of banners proclaiming the PM as a ‘bitch’, However in this current climate, the opposition leader, Tony Abbott, is very proud of gaining mileage out the current PM’s introduction of the Carbon Tax as a lie, and, in his eyes, a liar is not fit to lead the country. This is despite him serving in a government lead by a liar for near on twelve years. He had no issues with a lying PM then. He didn’t protest, he never spoke up about the lying, indeed he not only embraced it, he sold the policy to the nation as a whole and defended the PM at that point as a ‘great leader’.

What made Howard great in Abbott’s eyes? Well, for one thing he was his boss, the other thing is that Howard is a male, Julia Gillard is a female, and the Alpha Male that is a politician today cannot tolerate the thought of a female being in a position of power above them. Thus the smear campaign must start; Julia Gillard is a liar who is not fit to run the country. However NOBODY has asked Abbott what he thought, and thinks, of John Howard introducing a GST after stating, categorically, that he’d not do so. Nobody has asked Abbott what he thinks of Howard lying about the Children Overboard saga. Nobody has asked Abbott what he thinks about Howard lying over Australia’s entry into the Iraq-Afghanistan war in an effort to curry favour with the Bush administration, a conflict that has cost Australian lives and, after over ten years, has no end in sight. Nobody has asked Abbott where he sits on John Howards many, many lies.  Nobody has asked Abbott how he felt being party of a government that was built on lies. It’s one of the many reasons why I have little respect for the bulk of the journalists out there today. So, all you members of the Fourth Estate, start earning your cash and ask those protesting what they thought of Howard, and where were they when Howard introduced his own tax, which went against what he’d said. In short, ask those peanuts protesting and bleating like the retarded sheep that they are, what is the difference between John Howard, who habitually lied to the nation throughout his multiple terms of office, and Julia Gillard.

Did you vote for a GST as well? Of course not, you easily led dickheads
The difference is gender. Party politics is one thing, but to see people attacking each other on the basis of gender makes me want to vomit. And all of you small minded monkeys carrying those signs tell me where you were and what you did back in 2000 when John Howard introduced one of the worst taxes in Australian history, which drove prices up and devalued the Australian dollar to all new lows.

Two arseholes
Oh, sorry, that’s right; you’re too busy writing your revisions to history. I have no time for those protesting this Carbon Tax on the basis of a lie, because you’re all a bunch of hypocritical, easily led morons. Nothing more, nothing less. You want to elect a person who is more unfit to lead this nation than the average houseplant, just because he’s male. The same person who, in 1998, established a trust fund called "Australians for Honest Politics Trust" with the sole purpose to bankroll civil court cases against the One Nation party, along with Pauline Hanson and David Ettridge and who rejoiced when Hanson was jailed. The fact that the convictions were overturned means nothing to him; he dealt with that ‘bitch’ as well. The same person who verbally attacked a terminally ill man and didn’t have the guts to face him. The same man who believes in ‘good, old fashioned’ values, that being that a woman’s place is in the home, possibly barefoot, pregnant and tied to the kitchen sink. The same man who, if elected, will ultimately bring this nation to its knees. The same man who has no policies and insists on attacking the person, and not the policies before the Australian public. The same man who is clearly far too weak to attack anyone who could physically fight back.

Wake up and smell the cat food.

Personal Jesus.

Friday, July 08, 2011

#270: Downtown

The recent commentary about the utterly awful Coles ‘Downtown’ campaign certainly has displayed Social Media at its best (worst). The whole debacle is a classic example of how PR firms are able to put a positive spin on anything, even a negative campaign against Coles by, well, people. For those who don’t know, the ad features a pile of celebrity chefs, singing Downtown so out of tune and off key that Petula Clark would be spinning in her grave if she was dead. As it is, if she heard the song she might wish she was dead. Typically Facebook pages have been established to complain about the ads, but people who start complaint pages on sites such as Facebook aren't social media 'experts', such as those at PR companies, so they don't know what they're talking about. Or so we’re told, by the experts themselves, who decry anyone using the same tools that they use - if you're not working for a PR firm then you simply do not know what you're doing and shouldn't be using sites such as Facebook, Twitter, GoogleBuzz or the like.

As if any, and I mean ANY, PR firm is going to feedback anything negative to a major client such as Coles. Or Telstra. In those cases what the client is told that as long as people are talking about the brand, then it’s a plus. It’s the Oscar Wilde syndrome: “The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.” Indeed the official word from the head of Coles PR, in response to the negative campaign is, "The fact is that we have created a fun campaign that people are talking about and if that's the case then it's a good ad." Proof and pudding anyone? You can hate me all you want, just keep my name and brand in the public eye.  There is no bad publicity other than no publicity. If you think I’m joking just look at how Curtis Stone and his $10 dinner deals, that in reality cost around $30+ each, was spun.  Once the ACCC published the fact that, to make any of the meals you'd be spending far more than $10, Coles replied that the core ingredients only cost under $10, the rest is assumed that you already have, such as fresh herbs, and the meat was usually the lowest grade cat food mixed with pig fat and sawdust mince that was on sale that week.  We tried one of the Stone Under $10 Dinners once – it was lovely, and all up, to buy everything, from Coles, that was on the card, it cost me $35. Hardly under $10, or perhaps Curtis is so rich now he’s forgotten what $10 looks like.

"Bash it, Curtis."
Woolies was the winner there, dragging out the original celebrity chef, Margaret Fulton, to whip out some of her own cheapie recipes - just when we all thought Maggie was dead too, here she comes, like Oliver Cromwell, riding over the bridge to show that whippersnapper how things are really done.  It's times like these that I wish Bernard King was still around, if only to tell a lot of those 'celebrity chefs' to simply get stuffed.  Imagine Masterchef with Bernard?  That'd be a ratings killer - and they could use ole Ernie Sigley as the host.

"This shit costs $10 alone!"
I’m not a fan of social media ‘experts’ if only because they push their own barrel. I find I can’t even have a conversation with them anymore as they tend to want to sell me something – ANYTHING. And I’m not really buying. Plus they’re worse than University philosophy students in that they firmly believe that if you’re not one of them, then you have no idea what you’re talking about. The truth is that any PR company worth its salt can put a positive spin on anything – hell, if Hitler was alive and working today he’d have a pile of PR companies all over the world telling everyone what a good guy he really is, and how he’s just trying to unite Europe. And therein lies the key – PR companies are whores – they’ll sell anything, fiddle with the figures, spin more than Senna did in the wet and basically ignore anything that goes against what they say.  Goering would be proud of some of the people I know who work for PR firms these days.

I’d rather some companies spend less on a firm telling me how good they are and a bit more on things such as, ooooohhhh, customer service perhaps?

Now that’d be good PR surely?

Won't happen though.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

#269: Tears Of A Frog

There's a reason why I hate selling on eBay, and here it is.  To set the background, virtually each time we've shipped an item to France, Italy or Canada it's not arrived and the buyers have all claimed, successfully.  The fact that those countries have dodgy mailing systems means nothing - hell Canada Mail is on strike right now - we get the abuse, we're out of pocket.  As such when we decided to start offloading stuff from the overfull carport we clearly stated that we'd not ship to any of those countries and placed them on the exclusion list.

We also decided that, and this is keeping with eBay rules, every item has to go registered and insured.  During 2008 we lost an amazing $2,000+ to buyers who insisted that we not ship insured or registered, lesson learned.  We quote the actual postage cost, more times than not we lose money on it, but, again, better safe than sorry.

There's a third reason why we don't ship to France, and here it is.  The auction in question was a CD that sold for $25.00.  The buyer was a guy from France - beats me how he bid, and here's the messages that have gone back and forth, AFTER the auction ended.  Enjoy!

BUYER: Hi. Shipping is too high because 1/ you want registered and 2/ insuurance.
I want minimum shipping please. Money is hard to earn (especially today).
Thanks to update shipping.

US: Hi

As clearly stated in our auction listing, we do not ship to France under any circumstances. As such your bid is being canceled

I apologise for any disappointment, but this was clearly stated within the conditions of this auction.


BUYER: Sir, your answer is outrageous. You do not have the right to discriminate and to point to good countries and bad countries. Because you've probably had a problem with a package addressed to France, then you decide that the whole country is not viable. It's pathetic. You are a tiny man who lives in a country without culture, without history. Your country is a huge empty apart from idiots like you who are rotting in their vomit Ebay.
No, I do not give up the auction and if you persist, I go to court for discrimination.

US: Good afternoon.

According to Ebay guidelines, I DO have the right to restrict which countries I choose to do business with.

I will reporting this matter to them. YOU have failed to adhere to the conditions of the auction by 1) bidding when the conditions clearly state you shouldn't, and then B) for arguing the postage price AFTER the close of the auction - which, by bidding, you agreed to.

This is precisely why we don't ship to France. EVERY transaction has turned into a nightmare.


BUYER: Do you realize the stupidity of your message. Because you had some bad dealings with France (which can happen with "any other country ...), you condemn a population of 60 million French people ..... Your speech is purely racist and demonstrates your low intelligence and your narrow-mindedness. it's people like you that create discrimination and, 60 years ago you would have been a perfect Nazi ..... you defend your terms of sale which are an insult to France, a country of tolerance. you do not want France, rest assured, FRANCE lives very well without you.
I remain buyers with 100% positive feedback. I do not cancel the transaction but I'll pay your shipping costs.

And that was that.  I've not changed a single word.  Feel free to chuckle at the double standards and hypocrisy on display and marvel at the thought that, by abusing us we'll change our mind and sell to him.  We duly reported him for harassment, canceled the transaction, contacted the underbidder, who was more than happy to pay straight away and put some Johnny Cash on the iPod and chilled out.  So, if you ever want the answer as to why we don't sell to anyone in France, there you have it.  As for being 'perfect Nazis', if we were then we'd have no trouble walking down the Champs Elysees in the shade, because, as we all now know, that's why the beret wearing surrender monkeys (which is what Zee German calls them) really planted the trees for.

I now expect a message telling me that my mother was a hamster and my father smelt of elderberries, or that this clown farts in my general direction. And another pal wonders why I have absolutely no interest in going to Paris.  And bub, I live very well, EXTREMELY well in fact, without you, or fucking France and your fucking nuclear bombs and your fucking piss weak cheap wine that tastes like wallpaper paste mixed with cordial and your fucking croissants in my life too, so feel free to drop dead.  If I want culture I'll wander around here, if I want culture overseas then there's plenty of places that are far more interesting that France will ever be.