Bulletin subscribers have been writing into Crikey with their delivery tales, both good and bad. Latham’s pancreatitis and/or depression has flared up again, as has WA powerbroker Noel Crichton-Browne and Charles and Camilla’s impending nuptials – an eminently suitable topic for Valentine’s Day.

Bulletin Deliveries

I read your Freddy Krueger article (11/2/2005) regarding a readers need to cancel their Bulletin subscription following lack of regular delivery.

I too was very surprised late last year when one week my weekly Bulletin mag was thrown in the middle of my driveway on what was the normal Australia Post delivery day. Its cover boasted that the bulletin was now being delivered by my “local newsagent”, who in fact is several kms from where I actually live. There would be numerous other newsagents closer than this.

Anyway I emailed The Bulletin customer service centre and explained that their new delivery system was somewhat flawed, in that the postie actually put my Bulletin in my letter box, and the new delivery system by the “local newsagent” just tossed The Bulletin on the driveway.

Anyway after a few days The Bulletin service centre replied to my email, and indicated that they would revert the delivery of my subscription to Australia Post.

Now I’m all happy and it arrives on time each Wednesday.

Anthony Wall

My Bully subscription

In the interests of maintaining Crikey’s claim to balance… I too am a Bulletin subscriber and I got fed up with it arriving as late as the following Monday by a slack delivery contractor. So, I complained in a post-script to a letter to the editor (which, I add, was published) that I emailed to the mag. Within 20 minutes I had a reply from the Letters sub-ed who apologised and had referred my complaint to the circulation department. Thirty minutes after that happened I received an email informing me that I had been transferred to the mail delivery system. I then received a phone call -maybe 20 minutes later from a very helpful guy in circulation informing that the mail delivery would commence in 3 weeks (the first edition for 2005) and to compensate they extended my subscription by 4 issues. This was followed up with an email confirming the arrangement.

I’m impressed!

Latham and the highs and lows of depression

In response to the subscriber who wrote that Latham seemed “relaxed, comfortable, and if anything, more obviously enthusiastic about his mandate for the future than I had ever seen him” it should be noted that some suffers of depression (me included) experience both lows and disproportionate highs. This is something that is widely documented and often these people are at their most creative (notably artists) and productive (me) during the highs. The fact that Latham seemed to be happy and well on one occasion is by no means evidence that he does not suffer from some form of depression.

If Latham is suffering from depression I hope he recovers soon and feels that he can speak publicly about it one day, we need people to talk about this. In the mean time, I wish him all the best.


Did Latham really have pancreatitis?

It’s been pretty clear for a while that Latham’s depression was the real cause of illness, and the pancreatitis either a knock-on from that or total fiction.

Two facts are key:

  • when you have pancreatitis you usually lose weight because eating is very painful (the reason why people end up in hospital – so they can be put on a drip). Latham had gained weight and one of the causes of weight gain is some types of anti-depressant medication.
  • anti-depressants take about three weeks to really kick in. So I reckon he had a breakdown mid December and took the pills around x-mas – and was incapable of speaking to staff, colleagues etc until they lifted his mood and anxiety in late January.


NCB – crook or dill?

By Crikey, I think Noel Crichton-Browne has explained himself quite well in his rejoinder about The “travel rort” business. He may not be a crook, by almost any reasonable judgement, but he most certainly is a pompous, careless and irresponsible dill. ( – Not to mention his obvious pride at being homophobic..)

His political comments are always biased, although are occasionally quite pithy and witty, but surely Crikey can find a better respected, less biased and more credible commentator for the WA election. And where is the commentary about parties other than Li/Lab?? NCB may not think they matter but at least 15-20% and perhaps as many as 25-30% of the electorate will cast their primary votes for other than the two major parties, and it’s easy to argue that many more might if they thought it possible to break the current Tweedle Dum/Tweedle Dumber nexus. C’mon Crikey – give us a better deal!

Philip Carman
Perth WA

NCB and the WA election

How could the “hyphen” (Noel C-Browne) comment on the WA election without mentioning Colin “Venice” Barnett’s canal? If he is going to have any credibility as a commentator let’s see him either get stuck into Colin or explain to us poor hicks in the West why it’s a good thing that Colin has promised to build a 3700km canal without any feasibility study. He might also like to discuss how Colin can keep saying with a straight face that the cost will be around $2 billion and that the water will cost around $1.10 per kilolitre when an independent consultant came up with a cost of $9.5-12.4 billion and $6.10 per kilolitre for a pipeline back in 2002. Colin says that the canal is a technological advance on a pipeline – but nobody can seriously believe that it could be built for less than 20% of the cost of a pipeline and that the water will be delivered at a similar discount to the cost of the pipeline water.


NCB’s WA election column

So, a column on the WA election by an ex Liberal powerbroker? Amazingly he spends the whole column in a concerted bash at the ALP. Pretty damn incisive stuff, and scarcely predictable. Perhaps tomorrow you could get Amanda Vanstone to give us her “inside view” on how good detention centres are and how lucky Ms Rau was.

Robert Wingrove

Former Lib Senator/ the bomber

Matter 1 – I am just an ordinary bloke. I don’t have the resources, or the will, to run down everything I hear reports in the “Media”. My memory is tweaked by your “secured” NCB to cover the WA election.

For what it’s worth my memory recalls him as a man unworthy of his office or his party and a manipulator extraordinare of matters relating to WA politics, conservative in particular. I recall with little clarity references to a lack of due diligence in matters relating to the crossover between his personal and his political life.

I am happy for you to refute my inaccurate recall. If not, please explain your “secured”.

Matter 2 – Kimbo, the bomber. The downside of Kim is his electoral record and his performance in election campaigns. His parliamentary record is of some substance and his moving speeches as leader of the opposition support this.


Nine’s Day of Destruction in Perth

Had to share this with you guys..

It’s Sunday night, and Perth is being treated to a hot and humid thunderstorm. Meanwhile, channel seven is showing “Day of Destruction” a disaster movie with a plot revolving around a dodgy and overloaded power network and an impending meteorological “superstorm”.

But it gets better…

During the breaks, we’re getting political ads for the upcoming state election – where the Labour Govt is receiving criticism for the poor performance of the State’s power network. Meanwhile the thunder outside is getting louder…

Richard Morup

Terry Television vs Clark Scribblewrite

I loved the stoush between Glen Dyer and Clark Scribblewrite. Glen obviously has hit a sensitive nerve at Channel 9 to provoke Clark’s response. However Clark didn’t address the issue of how Leila McKinnon got the job at the Today show, and whether Leila being the boss’s wife had anything to do with it. I hope this kind of stuff continues under the new ownership of Crikey-cause I love it.

Greg – a happy subscriber

Evil Camilla will not be forgiven

Charles Richardson is right to point out that the Queen is in good health. She has the best doctors money can buy. And, with luck, they’ll keep the old girl alive well into her 90s. By which time, the contemptible Charles and his fellow adulterer will be into their 70s. So, who wants a geriatric to take over as king? Not the majority of Britons, that’s for sure. My money remains on William as the next monarch. Richardson is wrong on one thing: Camilla remains just as deeply-disliked in Britain as ever – you ought to have heard the comments from the women in my local supermarket yesterday – and her chances of becoming queen are zilch. She is blamed, perhaps even more than Charles, for Diana’s death. That will not go away. If UK law needs changing to accommodate her as Chilla’s consort rather than his queen, then public opinion will see to it that it is changed. You can rely on that. The monarchy is on tsunami-ish ground already. Camilla as queen would see an end to it.

Why Charles really popped the question

Australians have to wake up. The only reason why this marriage is on the agenda is the investigation by the House of Commons into the 635,000 pounds annually (around $1 million) of public money which Charlie spends on the upkeep of his enamorauta. Just a tax dodge.

What a rort. It is time we grew up and recognised that this spawn of a dysfunctional family is in no way fit to become the next Australian Head of State. We need someone whom we select for their upright character and one whom we can all respect. We cannot accept one who is titular Head of the Church of England when he blatantly breaks the laws of the Church with his 30 years of Adultery.

Can we afford to have this immoral individual become our Head of State merely by an accident of birth? It is time Australia severed the ties and became free of the Colonial yoke and played some part in selecting an outstanding Australian as Head of State. Sooner or later we have to grow up. Surely now is the opportune time.

David Gothard

Another Royal Wedding

I know the Spanish Crown Prince, HRH The Infante Felipe, Prince of the Asturias, just wed a divorcee in front of a cardinal in Madrid’s Cathedral of La Almudena. Just remember:

1. The bride – Letizia Ortiz – is an absolute stunner (that helps a lot – even with celibate old men making up the rules).

2. Her new husband is very rich (that also helps a lot). This wedding also keeps him away from his earlier target base – leggy blonde underwear models – and they’re ready to pop out good little Catholic Infantes and Infantas any moment now.

The other Spanish Princesses, his elder sisters, the Infantas Dona Elena and Dona Cristina are married respectively to a banker (the spitting image of British actor Richard E Grant) and a former Spanish Handball Team Captain and Olympic Bronze medalist who’s now idling along as a “businessman”. We thought the family deserved a break for once, OK?

3. Letizia is very, very articulate (a newsreader by trade) and put her case very nicely. If it works for David Gyngell…

4. Spain’s own Opus Dei helps keep bankrolling Vatican Bank trading losses and ultra-conservative priestly vocations – as well as providing half of the North Shore and Sydney University Liberals membership.

5. She’s a CATHOLIC girl, dammit. We can make an exception here, already.

Not like that horsey, mumbling, marriage-wrecking old Protestant cow Camilla (unless she turns out to be one of us, too).

End of discussion. Roma locuta est, causa finita est.

The Beenleigh Beefeater

Whining rock star wannabes

By pissing in the pockets of politicians, Bono has helped get governments to agree to millions of dollars in debt relief for developing nations, and has almost single-handedly put the very unglamorous issue of AIDS and poverty in Africa onto the international political agenda.

What have Jim Kerr or Max Factor achieved lately? Oh, and anyone who knows anything much about U2 knows that Bono is not Catholic – he’s non-denominational Christian.

Sharon Watson

Bono – Sunday Bloody Sunday

Well it seems people are lining up to attack Bono, and it may be that some of the criticism is justified. But this line is just bizarre:

“Throughout the years he is often to be found speaking up for oppressed and downtrodden peoples from all over the world. But never has he spoken out about the plight of the nationalist (ie Catholic) people in Northern Ireland who were treated pretty badly by Britain (in the eyes of many Irish people) for many years especially in the 60s and 70s.”

Has the writer ever heard of one of U2’s biggest hits – Sunday Bloody Sunday. That wouldn’t have been about the Bloody Sunday massacre would it? With a title like that he didn’t need to say much more, it raised the profile of the issue incalculably. What is more, when the referendum was being held on the Good Friday accords U2 played gigs which were effectively rallies calling on young people to vote yes. Seems like a good way to do something for the oppressed nationalists of Northern Island to me.

Why am I bothered writing this – well it’s true that I do like at least some of Bono’s music, and I am a bit shocked about the blatantness of the false attack. But the point is that we have an incredibly important campaign here. It may not achieve its full aims, but it has the potential to save millions of lives. And for better or worse Bono is the figurehead. That doesn’t mean he should be above criticism, but any attacks do weaken the campaign, which means they at least need to be true. And if not they need to be answered.


Crikey subscription glitch

Due to a technical glitch, online subscription payments to Crikey from February 8 until February 17 were not processed correctly. The subscribers are receiving their daily Crikey but we have not received any money so we’re asking the affected people directly by email to go through the payment process again.

Apologies from the The Crikey Team