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The Earley Edition has officially moved to My dot com, that is. Thanks for joining me.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Sudan and Serbia

We'll try this as an email post and see how it goes. (it didn't work, I had to edit this, email posting is useless)

A piece by Poynter on Sudan and the editorial (journalistic) approach to it. The highlights from the story
  • When Sudan gets only a few column inches, how can readers understand the nuance and scope of the crises? Do
  • While 300,000 corpses might be a story, 300,000 people starving to death one by one seems to be a harder sell.
And from Serbia, Boris Tadic is the new President of Serbia and Montenegro in what has been covered by many news agencies as the Serbian people voicing their will to turn away from isolationist policies and hardliners, and embrace reform.

What I haven't heard from mainstream news is how close the vote really was. Tadic took 53.7%, Nikolic 45% - a difference of only 275,055 votes. Nikolic put it down to farmers taking advantage of the sunshine to plough and pick cherries, while the young people came out to vote. It's interesting that he seems to accept that young people don't support him or his association with Milosevic. Thank God for that.

The only place Nikolic beat Tadic was in Kosovo - 72% of the vote to Tadic's 27%. The next closest region was Central Serbia, where
Nikolic trailed Tadic by only 2.3% (50.4 to 48.1%). It was almost to the opposite extreme in Belgrade, however, with vote going to Tadic 60-40.

Now that I've bored you all to tears, rack off then.

I may have been a bit harsh on my employer. It's not all advertising. And I'm not actually being given the paid advertorial, although that is an aspect of what's done here and I have had to do some of it. Maybe I'm just getting disillusioned with journalism in general which, again, could be a result of being here, not anything to do with journalism per se.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/29/2004 04:39:00 pm || || Return to Top

Friday, June 25, 2004

Relief, sweet relief

My first week of my second stint down here is about to end. It's been a disappoiting one. I've found it hard to get back into the swing of things, which probably comes from a whole semester of not writing any news copy. The writing problem, however, extended beyond news copy.

I finally handed in my international relations (IR) assignment today. It was, officially, seven weeks overdue. I think my tutor is going to give me some sort of overall pass in the subject. For this I will love her forever. I do not deserve it, and anyone who did any work in that subject can be justifiably angry that I might be given credit for the amount of effort I put in. If you count depression and angst as effort, I experienced plenty of that.

I worked straight through last night as I tried to finish my assignment; I hit the wall about an hour ago and everything started going downhill. I'm a little more perky now that I'm blogging.

I've had little motivation this week, this year. Every time I sit down to write lately I'd rather be doing something else. I don't think it's a healthy situation for a wannabe journalist to be in. The IR boogeyman is no longer hanging over my shoulder, constantly reminding me I should be working on something, should be getting it handed in, so tonight I can relax, without guilt, for the first time in two months. My semester finally officially over and behind me, I can get back into real life.

I'm not sure how much I should write here about where I work. Not the town, but the paper. I want to be a journalist. Some of what I do here is not journalism, it is advertising. Paid editorial copy. Last time I was here for six weeks I got the idea that journalism was basically advertising for whoever you were doing a story on. That's what this paper taught me. I don't believe it anymore. That's not what journalism is always like, is it? It is so incredibly boring to write what are essentially press releases. I need more.

This weekend I'm working some. I go to the speedway on Saturday to cover the last race of the season, and back out to WW on Sunday for a 100th birthday.

I have 105 unread messages in my Gmail account. Not because they're spam, not because I haven't checked it every five minutes. I just don't care to read them. Don't fret, they're unimportant. On that note, a reminder, I still have two Gmail accounts I can give away. 1 GB of storage space...
The coffee and sugar is wearing off and I'm falling asleep again. It's time to go. Have a good weekend everyone.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/25/2004 04:18:00 pm || || Return to Top

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Road to WW

The road to 'WW' is paved with good intentions, and cotton. Really, check it out.

That thar's cotton. I forgot I can post by email.

Here I am. Out in the sticks. Sometimes I wonder what people really think of themselves. How 'good' do people consider themselves to be? I guess it depends on what 'good' means to you. I don't wonder because I want to judge them, I would be interested to know if, given the opportunity to reflect on something they've said or done, would people regret it?

I went to 'WW' today to cover two things. One was the official unveiling of a mural painted by high school kids on the side of the police station to celebrate diversity of culture and the need to work together towards the future. The opening involved Aboriginal Lands Council representatives, police, the mayor, about 1/8th of the high school, was a big deal. The majority of the mural's artwork was done in Aboriginal dot-painting style, using both 'european' and traditional paint colours for further symbolic meaning.

So amidst this feeling of intercultural cooperation, friendship, positive community work - I return to 'N' to overhear some town locals talking about a function they would be attending, and insisting it couldn't be too near the river because that's where the 'coons' hang about.

I didn't say anything.

I was angry and sad at the same time. Angry because they said it. Sad because they didn't give it a second thought. Would they have reconsidered their choice of words if I'd spoken up? If they'd changed the words, would it really have changed the attitude?

Another day passes in a small country town.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/22/2004 05:23:00 pm || || Return to Top

Sunday, June 20, 2004

Reshuffling the Desks

Thanks to everyone who's been visiting. I leave tomorrow for my six hour drive to a small country town to do journalism work experience for the rest of the mid-year break. I won't be blogging at work, which means not surfing the web to blog about things, or read other peoples blogs! So this blog could take a slightly different direction during the next five weeks.

I'm thinking, 'the life and trials of a cadet journalist at a rural outpost.' Although it won't be the whole life, just five weeks of it. We'll see what happens during the week and when/how I can post.

But it's 3am now and I must sleep, or stay awake a little longer and sleep on the road tomorrow... I choose sleep now. Packing involved grabbing a handful or ten of clothes and throwing them in the car. It's a delicate and precise operation.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/20/2004 02:59:00 am || || Return to Top

The Wiz

I went and saw The Wiz last night with a bunch of friends. Not the movie (where that link goes), but the musical, on stage. A good friend was involved in producing it, as well as one of the lead roles.

Before going, I had never heard of this musical/movie. I probably should have heard of the movie at least. It starred Diana Ross as Dorothy, Michael Jackson as the Scarecrow, Richard Pryor as The Wiz... This was all excitedly explained to me by one of the girls who knows all the songs and grew up with it being a big thing at their house.

It was billed as a Motown version of the Wizard of Oz and I really enjoyed it. The music was great and the whole thing was funny and entertaining. Tonight was the last night, so all you Brisbanites hanging out for it... too late!

I'm not averse to the odd musical. Favourite is Les Miserables, especially the 10th anniversary concert.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/20/2004 02:56:00 am || || Return to Top

Saturday, June 19, 2004

State of Origin

I just realised how I may be able to explain to some Americans the rivalry that is State of Origin.

State of Origin is a best of three series held each year between the Australian states of New South Wales (where Sydney is) and Queensland (another state you don't care about).

The sport is rugby league. You can liken it somewhat to a game of American Football where you are only allowed to pass the ball laterally, ever. And instead of having offensive and defensive linemen square off nose-to-nose, everyone starts 10 meters apart, and you're only allowed to tackle/push/punch the guy with the ball. No blocking. Before you faint, I'll let you quietly mull over these concepts, and we'll let it stand at that for now.

Now that you are experts, imagine one team has been chosen to represent the Confederate South, and another the Union North, based on where they're actually from, not where they play now, so they feel it! It's North vs South, and they're playing for blood. Here, Queensland represents the Confederacy. Nationalist emotions are stirred up to remind hick Queenslanders how those arrogant New South Welshmen think they're better than us, but we fight for pride! A pride those big-city (Sydney) types would not, nay can not, understand!

So us Queenslanders tend to get more worked up about it. Similar to how the South still holds grudges against them Yankees...

This year, NSW won the first game 9-8 with an extra time field goal. Queensland won the second game 22-18 in regular time on Wednesday just gone. Three weeks till the decider in Sydney.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/19/2004 05:03:00 pm || || Return to Top

Yahoo! News - Annan to Visit Sudan to Press Government on Darfur

On first reading this headline I thought, "This is a good thing!" And I guess, in a way, I still think it is good they're recognising something needs to happen, except for one little problem. Nothing is going to happen. What does Kofi Annan say? " is the responsibility of the government to protect the population, and we need to encourage it and must insist it does it."

You....idiot. Problem one: government forces are intimately involved in the ethnic cleansing taking place, side by side with the enlisted help of the janjaweed militia. Problem two: that was the UN plan in Rwanda, alert the government that a massacre might be about to take place so they could take necessary steps to avoid it. Too bad it was the government planning the massacre, but thanks for the heads-up guys!

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/19/2004 01:11:00 am || || Return to Top

Friday, June 18, 2004

Assignment to write. Car to fix (stare at dolefully - I find cars manage to fix themselves this way, you should try it some time). Dinner and show to go to.

Shrek2 was good, government is bad, exam done, back bruised; but I don't have time to tell you all about it. Haircut had. Essential measurments taken for tux for wedding. Not mine.

I've never been measured before, so I'll put them here for posterity:
  • Chest: 39
  • Waist: 34
  • Seat: 40
  • Outsleeve: 24
  • Outleg: 38
  • Neck: 41 cm
All those measurements are in inches, except the one that isn't, obviously. I should have asked when I was measured, "Does a 'seat' bigger than my chest mean I have a big butt?" Am I abnormal? Oh no, where does life go from here? Can it continue?

It's the question on everyone's lips, I just thought it would be better if I was the first to verbalise it!

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/18/2004 11:48:00 am || || Return to Top

Thursday, June 17, 2004

This is great. Tadic (presidential candidate in second round against Radical candidate Tomislav Nikolic) and Kostunica (current Serb PM) have apparently been bitter political foes since they differed on sending war criminals to the International Court in the Hague or trying them in Serbia. I said earlier how Tadic was likely to win the second round if the votes of other democratic candidates came his way. All other parties had expressed the desire for their supporters to vote for Tadic in the second round, except Kostunica, who hadn't endorsed either candidate until now.

In this article, Nikolic challenges Tadic to debate, Nikolic tried to woo Kostunica's endorsement and votes by saying, "Kostunica is an honest man and I’m proposing that we honest people get together on one side and let the criminals be on the other."

But no, Kostunica party supports Tadic. Seems Kostunica decided not to side with the criminals after all.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 08:06:00 pm || || Return to Top

General. everybody likes the general.
I played rugby for a chiropractic school in the US for three months, and flatted ('roomed' for Americans) with a final year chiropractic student for four or five. Chiropractic adjustments before rugby, after rugby, at the college 2-3 days a week, at home.... free, on-demand chiropractic care.

I haven't been to a chiropracter since I left the US to return to Australia. That's 19 months. My back is a mess and my neck is out, but, give 'em a good twist and crack, ahhhhhh, endorphin release. I know Nottger and Schwartz are wincing just thinking of that... but who will fix me for free?

wait.... *crack* ohhhhhh *crack* yeahhhhh

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 03:13:00 am || || Return to Top

Oh yes, and going to watch Shrek2 with some journo student friends, sometime after my meeting with Centrelink tomorrow... hopefully it's uproariously funny and escapist, because I'm thinking by then I'm going to be in definite need of a good laugh and no significant use of the squishy gray stuff contained within my skull. (3pm -probably, or 3.45 - at BCC Indooroopilly if my stalker, you know who you are, or someone else I know reading this wants to turn up)

Yahoo! mail got freaked out by Gmail's 1gB of space methinks? They've gone mental and increased from 6mB to 100mB of storage space. Which reminds me, I think I can 'give away' or invite people to have...two gmail accounts. Let me know if you can't get, but want one. If it turns out I can't actually give it to you, I take no responsibility for your suicidal depression on being informed of this. You are hereby warned.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 02:38:00 am || || Return to Top

Yahoo! News - Iraqi Cleric Signals End to Shi'ite Revolt

Moqtada al Sadr has told his Mehdi Army to "go home". Nice gesture if he means it, but even if he does, will they listen to him? If they really are "ragtag fighters, mostly from the slums of Baghdad and impoverished southern villages", they may have nothing to go home too, or even a home. Sadr seems genuine enough now that he thinks he may have won himself some political clout in a future government. But I read a good quote (that will be used in the assignment I should be writing-yes, this is the height of procrastination)...

ahhhhh, typical. I can't find it. bodes well for my assignment. Anyway, the quote was something along the lines of, 'in ensuring future democratic society, it does not help to hold up obviously undemocratic leaders in the present because they can hold the status quo for the time being.' or some such. Now I must sleep, tomorrow is a big day.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 02:31:00 am || || Return to Top

Soccer. Premier League.
Rafael Benitez confirmed as new Liverpool manager
Good news. Looking forward to see how he handles Liverpool next season. Hopefully a little more solid than the last three years with Houllier. And Claudio Ranieri has replaced Benitez at Valencia. I would love to see Valencia v Chelsea....

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 01:58:00 am || || Return to Top

Queensland won! 22-18. What did I say, I didn't care? I'm not particularly ecstatic we won, but I was loudly armchair-coaching and yelling throughout. It was a great atmosphere on the big screen with a bunch of friends and a few New South Welshmen to trade insults with... nothing like the atmosphere of Lang Park (Suncorp Stadium) though.

If anyone is feeling charitable, feel free to help me find a precedent case in Australia where a university student has successfully challenged the government in court about switching from Youth Allowance to Austudy (student welfare for Americans). That's what I'm looking for right now.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/17/2004 01:24:00 am || || Return to Top

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

I wasn't going to post until I finished my assignment, but there you go. The second State of Origin game is on tonight. First game was lost 8-9 to an extra time drop-kick, so if we lose tonight that's the series to NSW. Go Queensland! I'm not as militant about it as I used to be, so not greatly concerned.

I have an exam tomorrow, meeting with those-that-would-rob-me-blind (government student allowance people), and an assignment still to finish. This Saturday we have a soccer game and I have the feeling I'm going to go off on someone if I'm not careful. There's a lot of built up stress from this semester that is approaching imminent explosion. I'm sure I'll contain it, but I can't wait to go all out.

This is the problem with soccer, there is no real stress release. Hopefully down south I can convince the rugby team to just give me five minutes on the park. It's been too long, and there's a certain peace and serenity gained while tackling someone at a full run...

I leave to head down south for five weeks on Sunday. Vive le journalisme et le journaliste! Or something...

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/16/2004 06:22:00 pm || || Return to Top

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

B92-Bosnian Serbs own up to Srebrenica
Thank you B92. They've put a story up, but unfortunately it's just an AFP report. I was hoping for a Serbian opinon...

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/15/2004 04:51:00 pm || || Return to Top

General. Mike(s)
I had to take a picture of this skywriting I saw today. I'm not sure who would hate someone enough to pay for this, but Mike must really suck.

'Mike Sucks - skywriting seen today.

It reminded me of another Mike I know...
This Mike removes the magnetic strip from library books so he can steal them without setting off the beeper. He keyed his mother's car once because she forgot to make his lunch before he went to work. I've noticed him mixing rat poison in my bird bath, which is so wrong. You'd think I wouldn't hang around with this jerk, and I don't! He just turns up at my house, stays until the fridge is empty and then, you get back home one day and he's just gone, along with your best DVDs and your stereo! That Mike is such a jerk. I wouldn't be surprised if the skywriting Mike is the same, but I don't think so. Everyone knows how much of a jerk he is, and they would have definitely written, "Mike is a big jerk!", just so everyone knew they were talking about Jerk Mike, not Sucky Mike. I know I would have.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/15/2004 01:31:00 am || || Return to Top

Monday, June 14, 2004

Balkans. Serbia Presidential Elections.
Some interesting statistics from the elections. Sorry I can't link to them, they came in an email.

At 7pm voter turnout was 42.3 per cent across the state. In Kosovo and Metohija specifically(official Serbian name for province of Kosovo), it was 31.6 per cent. I was under the impression Kosovar Albanians had boycotted Serbian elections since at least 1990, if not earlier, so that must only be counting the Kosovar Serb population.

By close of voting the 'estimated turnout' was 47.6 per cent, that's 5 per cent of the population casting their votes in the final hour. So Tomislav Nikolic (30.5 per cent) and Boris Tadic (27.1 per cent) head into the second round in two weeks. Since it's so close (around 105,000 votes), they expect Tadic to win the second round as he 'should' pick up the votes of the first round losing candidates. I hope so. Some more number crunching by b92.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/14/2004 07:57:00 am || || Return to Top

You may remember me commenting on the unhappy plight it is to support England when they play soccer (except against Australia of course). This mainly came about because I like to support someone in the World Cup, and I know the only way Australia is ever going to qualify is when the Oceania winner gets a direct entry. Note: doom merchant though I am, I of course will support them right up until they lose the playoff against the 5th-placed South American side

So I lamented England's uselessness, but this morning I honestly thought I may have to eat my hat, as it were, and happily so. England were 1-0 up against France in the opening game of their Euro2004 campaign. Sure, they may not have deserved the lead, but they had it, and at 90 minutes, with only 3 minutes of extra time remaining, it looked like they had it in the bag. This despite the fact they should have been 2-0 up, but Beckham missed a penalty in the 72nd minute.

Alas, good English lads gave away a free kick, which Zinedine Zidane sliced wickedly over the wall into the left corner as England 'keeper David James stood back and watched.

1-1. Alright, so they'll come away with a draw, right? Steven Gerrard (why, Stevie, why?) backpasses to James, who spectacularly takes Thierry Henry out trying to clear the ball. Penalty. Step up Zidane. 2-1. Game over. Thanks for coming ladies and gentleman.

I don't actually think England are completely useless. They're just not finishers. Two goals conceded, in the 91st and 93rd minutes, to lose the game. Fantastic.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/14/2004 07:22:00 am || || Return to Top

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Very disappointed b92 hasn't reported on this Srebrenica Report yet. I know only I care, but here are some other b92 links about it...And just so you get an idea on attitudes and why this new report is a fairly big deal, this from 2002:

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/13/2004 02:11:00 am || || Return to Top

Saturday, June 12, 2004

General Sport.
New Zealand thrash England 36-3 in the union, Lions ride roughshod over Essendon 162-96 in the AFL. It's a little disappointing not having Fox Sports to watch Euro2004, but I'm starting to think it's really a very good thing... opening match kicks off in three hours at 2am.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 10:53:00 pm || || Return to Top

Rugby Union.
All Blacks v England coming on the box soon. I'm not sure who I would rather lose more.
England beat us in the World Cup Final. Ergo, they deserve to be humiliated.
The All Blacks, on the other hand, are New Zealand's national team. For this, they too deserve to be humiliated.
Who, oh who, will win my affection?

I'm leaning towards NZ, but I don't want England bouncing back on a bender against Australia next week...or whenever they play. Who knows? It's not like the Australian Rugby Union has heard of a marketing department.
Did anyone else know Australia is playing Scotland at 3.30pm tomorrow? No? Me either.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 05:15:00 pm || || Return to Top

Yahoo! News - Serb Boy Killed in Apparent New Bid to Rock Kosovo

This was a week ago now, but I was reminded while posting these other Serb-related events. It's a very similar situation to what happened earlier in March when a Serb teenager was shot. Everything went quickly downhill then, with almost 20 deaths and Serb houses and Orthodox churches torched before the situation calmed. Thankfully arrests of the suspected gunmen were made quickly this time, and we haven't heard that Kosovo has "exploded in violence" again.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 01:35:00 pm || || Return to Top

I just discovered while searching and posting the last two entries, this book I borrowed from the library, UNDER ORDERS: War Crimes in Kosovo, is actually a report by Human Rights Watch (obviously I hadn't opened it yet...). If you follow the link, you can read the whole thing online. Not likely, I know, but the Executive Summary may be worth the time of some.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 01:20:00 pm || || Return to Top

Does Serb weekly BLIC have the inside scoop on David Hicks?! An Australian accused for terrorism in USA: Via Kosovo to Al Kaeda. Apparently David Hicks took the name Muhammed al Australia, stole testosterone from the butchers he worked at, and 'friends' say that he 'was a monster'! Seems unlikely to me too.

The stories at that link might change tomorrow, so I'll post the whole thing in comments in case.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 01:08:00 pm || || Return to Top

BBC NEWS - Bosnian Serbs admit to Srebrenica

For the benefit of those who refuse to believe atrocities were committed by Serb forces in Bosnia and elsewhere, hopefully this gets wider media recognition in Serbia proper. It's an official investigation which, the story says, "is the furthest any Bosnian Serb authorities have gone in admitting their involvement in events around Srebrenica".

Nothing reported on B92. BETA has something, but only available as a headline. Nothing on Blic, but check out the next post. Tanjug has a few lines about it.

Of all the other sites, something may be there, but my Serbian isn't exactly up to translator status quite yet.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 01:01:00 pm || || Return to Top

I've finally discovered RSS and XML feeds (Atom in Blogger) and the 'newsreader' programs that go with them.

I haven't decided yet if going through the newsreader is really any better than visiting the sites directly.

But I do have a leaning, and it's towards 'no'.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/12/2004 02:44:00 am || || Return to Top

Friday, June 11, 2004

I forgot about this story from last night.
After handing in my journalism law assignment I met up with some friends from my French class. At one point we were playing pool, doubles, against the guys holding the table. Nothing too exciting. Lost the first one, nobody else was waiting so we played them again. Second time we won by one ball and considered leaving, but apparently (a) wanted a tie-breaker, and was unimpressed at our non-comittal attitudes. So as (a) leaves to get some change (b) says, "haha, he's cut now!"

Apparently he didn't think we were good enough to beat him. So the third game I must admit I felt a certain sense of satisfaction as I pocketed the black with seven of their balls still on the table. (a) and (b) skirted around the issue of the obligatory pants-down around the table until (b)smashed his beer glass. We patted ourselves on the back and took our leave.

Thursday is two-for-one on spirits and local beers at the old RE and one of the small girls tore into it. I think she felt nauseous just looking at what was either the sixth or eighth one before disappearing into the toilets. A small loss-of-fluid incident was had in my car, on the way to dropping people at their next stop later, but amazingly not a drop was spilled! I commend her, and I hope her shirt came out all right.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/11/2004 08:16:00 pm || || Return to Top

I really had no intention of staying up until 4.30am... I spent the majority of the evening (post-midnight) moving everything from NEWS, Sport and Reviews to here. This single blog gets it all now. You may not like it, but that's the way I'm running this show.

Let's see: Monday I was on the verge of failing one subject, and it's still up in the air; Tuesday or Wednesday, I can't even remember, I read about the late assessment policy and stressed - another subject I could yet fail; Thursday I rang beuraucratic types back to make a fiscal change I had been told I could make but instead am told no change can be made, I'll just have to deal with $115 less per fortnight (two weeks for Americans). Remaining calm. Haven't broken anything, yet...

That last post was my century. Averaging 128.68 words per post. Thinking about money again has dampened the enthusiasm of being done consolidating back to one blog. ahhhh...101

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/11/2004 04:31:00 am || || Return to Top

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Accidentally deleted a post! Went something like this:

I was working last night on my assignment that's already overdue, and thought I should probably check to see how many marks I'm losing each day for lateness. Open the course outline, and this is what I read:
You must submit all assignments on time in order to pass this course.
I felt physically ill. Quick call to the lecturer to grovel and I am now working (more) feverishly on it.

Update, since I've had to rewrite that first bit, is I've handed it in but haven't been able to talk to lecturer yet... Hopefully she lets me pass.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/09/2004 07:00:00 pm || || Return to Top

Talking Points Memo: by Joshua Micah Marshall: May 16, 2004 - May 22, 2004

it hurts my heart to write this about an institution I dearly love but this army is completely dysfunctional, angry and is near losing its honor. We are back to the Army of 1968.

This was linked from comments on Chris's piece just mentioned. It gives an insight to the situation on the ground in Iraq from a security contractor.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/09/2004 02:01:00 am || || Return to Top

Read this: Heart of Darkness, by Christopher Allbritton, who brought us the good news of Iraqi artwork. It is an honest, gut-wrenching piece.

It brings to mind some of the reasons I fear being a journalist in "bodgy places", but at the same time all of the reasons I feel I have to. Thanks Christopher.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/09/2004 01:57:00 am || || Return to Top

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Sorry, scratch that idea of moving everything to NEWS, it's all moving to HERE.

Anyway, check out The Political Compass. Are you 'right' or 'left'? As they say, that's not enough to accurately describe or distinguish us. Take the test and see where you come out. Not suprisingly, I was almost dead centre last time I took it, which was a while ago... not much of a reactionary am I. I'll let you know my results if you take it and tell me yours.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/08/2004 05:16:00 pm || || Return to Top

Tomislav Nikolic, deputy leader of the Serbian Radical Party, is running for the post of Serbian president. Elections to be held June 13. He gave a TV interview to B92's Sanda Savic a little over a week ago. The full transcript is here:
B92 Interviews >> Tomislav Nikolic

Savic and Nikolic are politely at each other's throats throughout. Not surprising given the history of the Radical party and B92's championing of free press. Nikolic and the Radicals do enjoy a lot of support at the moment, so hopefully Savic's aggressive interviewing hasn't attracted more support for them just before the election. There will be more to worry about than just economic reform if the Radical party returns to dominance in Serbia.

Perhaps the most telling for media was Nikolic reaffirming his assertion that he doesn't regret the death of publisher Slavko Curuvija in 1999, still agreeing with Vojislav Seselj's statement:
Seselj: "Keep that in mind. You from B92 and the other traitor outlets. You want to kill off statesmen like rabbits and keep yourselves safe at the same time. Well, you're mistaken. You're very, very mistaken. No more kid gloves. Anyone who works for the Americans will have to suffer the consequences."

Given that, I not only doubt the sincerity of Nikolic's closing statement below, but find it slightly chilling.

Other highlights include:
  • Opening statement
    Nikolic: Good evening. I'm happy to be here.
    Closing statement
    Nikolic: You haven't devoted this show to presenting me as a presidential candidate, but I won't hold that against you.

  • Serbia's economic future
    B92: And, in your opinion, who is our main partner in the West at the moment?
    Nikolic: The European Union, I think.
    B92: You've heard what Javier Solana (EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) - ed.) said: "If Tomislav Nikolic wins, the EU won't support him and this will be a very bad signal to foreign investors."
    Nikolic: He didn't say that.
    B92: That is exactly what he said.
    Nikolic: He said this very gently and mildly, choosing his words very carefully. He said that he believes foreign investors will not be too happy if I win.
    B92: "It's going to be a bad signal," that's what he said.
    Nikolic: What, am I going to steal from foreign investors?
    B92: They won't invest in this country: you know that. That's our second topic tonight, the economy. Let's see how you can...
    Nikolic: Let's clear this up, because you're convinced Solana said something which he didn't say...

  • Lies and getting stuck in
    Nikolic: Do you have anything else?
    B92: I have loads of things, but I still haven't had a single answer from you.
    Nikolic: You don't have anything.
    B92: I haven't had a single answer. I have a heap of material. An enormous number of facts.
    Nikolic: I knew this program would be like this.
    B92: An enormous number of facts. I can read them out to you.
    Nikolic: Don't read someone else's facts to me.
    B92: These are not someone else's facts.
    Nikolic: Why didn't you approach me with these before this program?
    B92: The Serbian Public Revenue Bureau. A report. Listen to this.
    Nikolic: I can't respond to lies.
    B92: These aren't lies. This is an audit report.
    Nikolic: Lies.

  • Good Journalism?!
    Nikolic: Let me ask you one thing.
    B92: Please do.
    Nikolic: If you're a good journalist, why didn't you ask me to prepare my answers in advance?
I'll just forgot what I was told in first-year journalism then, shall I? "Do not provide questions beforehand unless it is the absolute last resort for getting the interview."

Now I'm not advocating what seems to be B92's push that Nikolic shouldn't be allowed to be in the elections because he will hurt Serbia's economy. Democracy has to continue, and the people have to be allowed to elect who they want, no matter how wrong the rest of us may think it is.

I'm just hoping and praying Nikolic is not who they want, that the majority of Serbians see how his election will hurt the economy, and respond by getting motivated to vote - against him. Much more importantly however, I'm hoping the majority of Serbians don't agree with the nationalistic crap he lays on, and that's why they'll turn out in numbers to vote against him. For the time being I'll take any reason.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/08/2004 11:05:00 am || || Return to Top

Oh for sleep. Oh to pass all subjects this semester... Almost there, two assignments, one exam to go. 4am now. Barely conscious. Wish me luck at Coles interview - 2pm.
I'm leaving Sunday week (20th) for 5 week journalism 'internship'/work experience down south again these holidays. I think I'll be getting paid a C2 (cadet 2) grade, around $16/hr if it's a 38hr week. Something like that. So Coles is not my dream job, but I need it for the rest of second semester, seriously need it.
Must sleep. I've at reached that point of the tiredness where I begin to get the shakes, feeling slightly ill, body not reacting well to the only the 4 hours of sleep Sunday night.
Gotta love uni.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/08/2004 04:13:00 am || || Return to Top

Monday, June 07, 2004

Some may have noticed I haven't posted on here for over a week. NEWS posting has also been down, but that's not for lack of things to post about. I think the response and my lack of posting makes it an easy choice.
It's all going into one blog. It will all be moved to the NEWS blog sometime in the next 10 days, when I have time.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/07/2004 11:34:00 am || || Return to Top

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Yahoo! Sports - World Soccer - I'll win Chelsea title within four years -- Mourinho
Why does he think he has four years? After six months with Abramovich's money and the quality of players that brought, Claudio Ranieri took Chelsea to second in the league, their highest finish in many years. I believe he would have won the title for Chelsea within one or two years, but it wasn't enough to keep his job. Claiming he needs four years is a bit cowardly of Mourinho. In fact, I'm not sure how well Abramovich will take it, seeing as Ranieri was given the boot because he couldn't win the title in half a season.
I can guarantee Abramovich expects Chelsea to win the 2004/05 season, as he expected them to win the 2003/04 season. Mourinho needs to watch his back.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/06/2004 03:07:00 pm || || Return to Top

Saturday, June 05, 2004

I'm honoured to shake the hand of a brave Iraqi citizen who had his hand cut off by Saddam Hussein
US President George W. Bush meets victims of the deposed Iraqi tyrant in the Oval Office.
also from The Weekend Australian's 'Editor' section, May 29-30, 2004. Yeah, I'm a bit behind on some things I wanted to post.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/05/2004 04:44:00 pm || || Return to Top

We look like monsters in the eyes of the world. This makes me sick
Israel's justice minister Yosef Lapid, a Holocaust survivor, after viewing TV images of Israel's offensive in the Palestinian Rafah refugee camp.
from The Weekend Australian's 'Editor' section, May 29-30, 2004

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/05/2004 04:42:00 pm || || Return to Top

Friday, June 04, 2004

Back to Iraq 3.0: A glimpse of the Baghdad art scene

Normal things happen in Iraq. Let Christopher Allbritton tell you about it.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/04/2004 11:12:00 am || || Return to Top

Lots of news to blog about, no time to do it.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/04/2004 12:11:00 am || || Return to Top

Thursday, June 03, 2004

The Premier League front:

Liverpool in no hurry to make Benitez manager, even though he has "walked out" on the Spanish champions and Ranieri set for Valencia

Speaking of Chelsea, Gronkjaer calls treatment of Ranieri "a joke" while Mourinho ready for Chelsea knife-edge.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/03/2004 03:27:00 pm || || Return to Top

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Yahoo! News - Iraqi Fury Makes Way for New President, Government

I think this is good news. I'm obviously not from Iraq, but even I feel a sense of pride in seeing the Iraqi Governing Council refuse the US/UN "nominated" leader. Of course they should be able to choose their own head of state, even if his position is, as the article says, "largely ceremonial".

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/02/2004 11:34:00 pm || || Return to Top

Japan derail England's Euro 2004 preparations.

How many ways can I say, "I'm not surprised"? England, perennial underperformers, will go down at Euro2004 like a wet burlap sack full of festy, rotten potatoes. And yet - resigned sigh - Go England!

Why do I care? Why? I continue to support a useless team and get annoyed at their uselessness...

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/02/2004 10:06:00 pm || || Return to Top

Another Soldier Email from This is a little more on the 'good news' out of Iraq line I'm trying to follow.

the earley edition - Posted by Dave @ 6/02/2004 12:26:00 am || || Return to Top