Queensland to the polls? I know Anna Bligh keeps denying any intention to run a QLD state election late this year while the LNP is still trying to crawl. However … I just got a tip this morning from an advertising buddy that the QLD government has a “repositioning Anna advertising campaign” getting built for a run next month – at taxpayers’ expense. You know, the usual “as a government we have to explain to citizens the policies we are putting in place…”, thinly-disguised party political advertising coming out of the public purse. The ALP polling says that Anna is still too closely tied to the Beattie years and the public is not listening to Anna’s “I’m going to fix it” as it sounds too much like Beattie’s “I’m going to fix it”. So if a taxpayer-funded marketing campaign kicks off in August then you wouldn’t be leaving the vote til next year as the reported $21 million to be spent on the campaign would be wasted given the short memories that the public has.

MV Cape Don, Chapter 37: It seems that NSW Maritime loves to hate the historical vessel, MV Cape Don. There are two other ships moored at the Old Coal Loader Wharf in Waverton, Sydney and both have been given until the 8th September to vacate, which is more than three weeks longer than the MV Cape Don. While the Baragoola (which spent 60 years in service as a Manly ferry before its retirement in 1983) and the defunct Rose Bay Afloat restaurant show no signs of life or onboard activity, the MV Cape Don is a thriving community of restoration volunteers which has been denied reasonable access, even to prepare for eviction on August 14. The MV Cape Don may be a relic of little consequence to NSW Maritime and the State Government but there are federal organisations that value the ship. Customs and Navy have developed close relationships with the not-for-profit group over the years and regularly use the vessel for all sorts of training, including border control. Members of the MV Cape Don Society have stepped up their new “You’re Not Listening Mr Tripodi” campaign to stop NSW Maritime from shoving the ship onto a lonely buoy in the middle of Sydney Harbour and will shortly erect a huge 13 metre long banner to reinforce their message.

Which Bank doesn’t trust Amazon? Last night a Commonwealth Bank customer got very mixed messages when trying to find out why a payment to Amazon.com didn’t go through. One customer service rep said there was a credit card ban on them. No, hang on, on “a merchant”. The CBA’s fraud department reckons there’s “currently” no ban though. Apparently the PR department is being called in to provide “the best response”. Sounds nasty.

Geothermal ice melt link: New Scientist is reporting a story that scientists have found multiple hot magma vents shooting out 450 degree water spouts in the Atlantic Ocean. Apparently the Northern Ice caps are melting because they have the equivalent of volcanoes warming up the sea under and around them.

The name behind QF frequent flyers: Did you know Australia’s largest member-based program ie Qantas Frequent Flyer (QFF) is outsourced to a mob called Publicis Loyalty. Check out www.publicisloyalty.com.au. I am sure would raise concerns as to how this group is “intimately” aligning Australia’s largest member based program to other Publicis business solutions and shared services. As a QFF member, how do I know my data is not being used for anything other than QFF purposes and who is Publicis Loyalty in relation to Qantas?

Frequent flyers II: Is there a serious problem with the new Qantas FF program — redemptions are not being delivered in the quoted time — customer service has a different excuse with every call — so far it’s been four weeks to get a simple gift voucher.

And finally: What are they doing in the NSW parliament? ACTING-SPEAKER (Ms Diane Beamer): Order! The member for Epping will cease injecting. The Hansard link is here.  

Peter Fray

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