In the wake of huge losses by MFS shareholders, and job losses at MFS itself, what does the company do? It buys a corporate box at Suncorp Stadium of course. How indulgent.

The illustrious leader of the Victorian ALP, Stephen Newnham, sent a begging letter to some hapless members last week about the Gippsland by-election and his attempt at humour was beyond the pale. References to Britney Spears and Kevin Federline were used as analogies for the Libs/Nats squabbling. Very strange. Nobody saw the humour and many think he has lost the plot.

The author – “Anonymous” – of the upcoming TV insider tell-all book, Boned, is Gretel Killeen. (Crikey: Other tips say Christine Spiteri. What would we know? We don’t write this stuff. We rather hope it’s Eddie McGuire, but that’s just us.)

Seems Woolworths and Coles are in the process of implementing the buying and pricing methodologies of Tesco and Sainsbury from the UK. Essentially predicated upon a third party interposed between them and the suppliers of fresh fruit and vegies for example. Where’s the sting you may ask. Well these intermediaries deliver to volume (you must be a big producer, or group of producers, to deal with them) and specification and also most interestingly the buy price is fixed by contract for the year. So? Well Woolies and Coles then have a base price and increase this throughout the year to charge what the market will bear. For example if there is a shortage at the wholesale market (remember they have supplies secured by contractand seasonal conditions do not effect this) and the wholesale price goes up then Woolies and Coles increase their retail prices and therefore margins to reflect market conditions. Their market position and power enables them not to retail below the base selling price set for the year. Nothing like a bit of market power to run a solid profit increase year on year.

Signs meanwhile that times are bad at Myer. They’ve sent around a “family and friends” discount period at Myer. This follows a successful viral marketing campaign run by Myer last year, very similar to this offer. People get the email and forward it to their 100 closest friends. The word spreads faster than a bushfire and the recipients feel they are in on something special. Expect more of this as retail sales suffer. (Crikey: You’re our friends and fam so here it is. Go forth and spend!)

Regarding Kevin Rudd’s comments on Australia developing a bionic eye at the 2020 summit. Is he playing copy cat again?

Meanwhile, on the grassy knoll: The recent announcement by Queensland Premier Anna Bligh that Labor Member for Fitzroy, Jim Pearce, has suffered depression gives fuel to speculation that Premier Bligh will go early to the polls in after only two years in office for the Beattie/Bligh Government. The quiet whisper is that Jim’s seat of Fitzroy is currently seriously under-populated of necessary electoral numbers and will disappear in some form of merge with the neighbouring seat of Rockhampton held by Labor leader of the House and No. 1 head-kicker and pugilist “Rocky” Rob Schwarten. The scenario is that rather than have some fractious, vote losing preselection battle for the newly created seat, the seriously depressed Pearce will abdicate his position in the Parliament thereby forcing a by-election under the current Parliamentary boundaries for the seat of Fitzroy. As Fitzroy will be abolished at the next election due within twelve months which would mean that anyone elected to Fitzroy would only be a seat warmer for a few months, it will be the perfect excuse for Premier Anna to say that it is ridiculous to appoint someone to Parliament for only a short space of time and thereby giving her another “reason” for an early general election for the whole of the State of Queensland. This will take advantage of the proposed “Pineapple Party” confusion being promoted by “The Borg”, Lawrence Springborg as his only way back from political exile and will feast upon the voter confusion being served up by the convoluted conservative menu of a National party, a Liberal Party and the new Pineapple Party. Added to Premier Anna’s concerns about the rapidly deteriorating economic stability and the growing Government debt and its serviceability this will see her take the golden opportunity to cement herself in for the next three years while the economic weather gets exceedingly bad and hope that she has come through it all in three years when the weather clears up.