Wednesday, 22 February 2012

The Other Barnett Formula

Yet more sad news, this time from those jackanapes in Australia that thought they could survive without Westminster's munificence. The poor deluded fools have apparently taken to digging rocks out of the ground, smashing them up a bit and then selling the resulting detritus. Of course without the expert oversight of a mandarin from Whitehall the cretins haven't realised that this so-called "ore" that they are totally, utterly and completely 100% dependent on, that they have based their entire economy and way of life on, that underpins their very belief system and is worshipped as a god in satanic rituals, is a...diminishing resource.

And incredibly they seem unperturbed by the price of said ore varying over time in a most volatile fashion! Despite all of this foreboding, some jumped up satrap has got it into his head that their mining industry might be a good thing, and might even be something that could benefit his enfeebled underlings for generations to come!! The BBC reports it thus in a typically craven, left-wing style:

Satrap Barnett, giving what may be a fascist salute to his ululating hordes from
the command centre of his mobile Scud launcher. Honestly, he's just as bad as 
Mugabe/Hitler/Mussolini/Stalin/Kim Jong Il/Franco/Ceausescu/Judas Iscariot/...
(delete as (in)appropriate, you may choose more than one answer)

The government of Western Australia has said it is planning to launch its own sovereign wealth fund in a bid to invest earnings from its mining boom.

The state, which has large deposits of minerals such as iron ore, has seen mining revenues rise in recent years.

The surge has been driven by increased demand from China and other emerging economies in Asia.

State Premier Colin Barnett said it was necessary to ensure the resources-led boom led to long-term benefits.

"The Liberal-National government is committed to ensuring future generations of West Australians have a legacy from this historic period of development, built predominantly on the significant but finite resources available to us at present," the premier said.

Mr Barnett said the details of the fund will be announced during the state's budget, which is scheduled to be presented in May.

Australia's government has its own sovereign wealth fund called the Future Fund.

Why oh why did we let them have separation?

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Oily spam

An interesting article on North Sea oil in the Economist this week, although they did not consider the fairly hefty elephant in the room, i.e. the prospect of Scottish independence. The final paragraph in particular is worth repeating, neatly encapsulating why Scotland, contrary to the bizarre Unionist mantra, should not be cursing the gods for lumbering us with a "volatile, diminishing resource"...

[The UK] relies on its offshore reserves for 55% of its energy. Oil and gas account for 2.4% of GDP (finance is 10%, manufacturing 11%). In 2010 it invested more than any other industrial sector and paid a fifth of Britain’s corporation taxes. Meanwhile a thriving supply chain of British technical firms export their services around the world—a business that should continue long after the last drop of oil dribbles ashore.

But enough of oil. There seems to be a lot of spam appearing in blog comments at the moment. It might be time to move comments over to Disqus, as they apparently offer much better options for dealing with spam...(non-spam) comments are welcome on this subject.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012


The grim reaper is sharpening his scythe as stormclouds gather over Ibrox. How ironic that Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs might deal the final blow to her most loyal of subjects. Celtic seem unmoved by the plight of their nemesis, cheerily proclaiming that their business strategy does not depend on their bedraggled foes. I wonder what odds you can get just now on Celtic getting 10-in-a-row?

The best idea for everyone might just be to draw the curtain on Scottish football v1. The result after 130 years? Well, Rangers won more titles, but then again Celtic won more Scottish Cups and also a European Cup, and made it through to the end with their finances in decent order. So a draw. Well played everyone.

All that remains is to set up new teams for the Scottish Phoenix League, coming to a stadium near you in Spring - Autumn 2013. What an opportunity to re-shape Scottish football (into a sphere presumably), sweeping away the vested interests that hold it back, removing at a stroke the tribal tensions that blight our game.

For starters we could have a couple of new teams in Glasgow. Maybe one team could be for people that keep their place in books by folding over the corners of pages, the other for sensible, godly folk that use bookmarks? On second thoughts imagine the bile and hatred that this would unleash!

And we could have a single team for Edinburgh, maybe with a nickname that unites everyone in Auld Reekie...the Edinburgh Trams? Naw. The Edinburgh Goodwins? Optimistic sounding, who could possibly object to that name...?

Ditto for Dundee. I can just see the Dundee McGonagalls playing in a shiny new stadium down by the Tay, sporting a swanky new jute kit designed by the bods at the V&A, with player names and numbers made up of Topaz gemstones (they would at least justify the ridiculous price of the replica kits).

A single team for Aberdeen seems fine. Maybe a bit of re-branding could bring in a new audience? The Aberdeen Trumps, aiming for golf-football crossover appeal? Maybe not. The Aberdeen Turbines, going for the lucrative untapped eco-warrior audience? Hmmm...maybe the Aberdeen Bypasses? Since success regularly passes them by perhaps that would be right.

So there we have it, the blueprint for a successful SPL v2. Five realistic contenders for the title each year, with room for a challenge from one of the regional teams once in a while. Who needs Henry McLeish's review, or Ernie Walker's think tank?