It’s always tricky in a downturn. It is not only the restaurants favored by the executives that begin to suffer. Insolvency practitioners are now reporting that ‘gentlemen’s clubs’ and brothels are feeling the pinch too. But what happens when the banks lending to brothels get left with large debts? Sometimes they prefer to cut unpalatable deals just to prevent the publicity and tasteless jokes that would do the circuit if they followed through and went hard after their money. As it were. Apparently this is what has happened to one well-known establishment on the eastern seaboard. And the bankers working frantically on that particular turnaround deal are working overtime!

Re yesterday’s tip on Jetstar: I (and quite a large number of other people) booked flights from Brisbane to Osaka. A few months ago, jetstar announced (via press releases) that they would be moving this route to depart from the Gold Coast instead of Brisbane. Their “extremely helpful” staff called to say that the flight time changed, without bothering to mention the change in departure location! When contacting them to find out what sort of compensation would be offered (to cover additional travel expenses), I was told that I was welcome to cancel the flight at no cost, but nothing else would be offered …

Correct me if i’m wrong, but it seems ridiculous that the NSW Government is desperately trying to keep Standard and Poor’s happy, when S&P are the clever folk that gave the high ratings to the toxic CDOs that have torpedoed the financial system. Since S&P got it so spectacularly wrong (and this is kinder than calling them dishonest) is it time we listened to someone else?

A fresh round of farewells is about to hit Sydney’s Sun-Herald. As part of the cost-cutting and share price rescue plan, four senior Sun-Herald journalists are parting company with the paper. Chief reporter Frank Walker leaves after more than 22 years service. Others heading for the exit lounge are Sarah Price, Angela Cumming and John Kidman.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey