Friday, February 17, 2012

A Handy New Tool

THE BILLABONG’S elderly neighbour is one of those human fixtures every street should have. More than a little deaf and quite a bit dotty, her antics and misadventures are a source of mostly harmless amusement. There is her crusade against possums, for example, which involves midnight shrieks and a broomstick as she barrels from the backdoor to defend the passionfruit vine. Then there is the habit of locking herself outside, usually while dressed only in a nightie. It is an alarming spectacle when she comes knocking late at night to request help getting back inside.  Young Master Bunyip, who runs a deficit of respect for the elderly, calls her Mrs Richards, a reference to the hearing-impaired guest who cost Basil Fawlty a large sum in a particularly humorous episode of Fawlty Towers. It is a fair but inadequate description. The fictional Mrs Richards is not half so unhinged. 

Just lately relations have been a little strained, as  Mrs Richards has taken it into her head that the Professor should carry the entire cost of replacing the dilapidated side fence that divides our properties. Apparently, because the horizontal cross members are on the Billabong’s side, the fence is a Bunyip’s responsibility. Who knew? Certainly not the solicitor who will need to be paid for spelling out the law in a stern letter. Until this week it seemed the only option, the sole path to a settlement of this prickly matter.

Now, thanks to the Gillard government, there is hope of a handier solution. The next time Young Master Bunyip spends the night he will be handed the fairway iron of his choice while the Professor takes up a cricket bat. Then father and son will pay Mrs Richards a visit, kick in her front door, smash her furnishings and corner the old girl at the point of a sharp stick in the lavatory. All that should make sure she puts her signature on the dotted line and undertakes to cover the entire cost of a new fence out of her own pocket.

It may seem brutal, but our PM reckons such an approach is just and fair and all above board. It is, after all, a plank of her government’s new industrial policy, which forbids authorities proceeding with complaints and prosecutions once an agreement has been reached.

Team Gillard has not yet recognised the reform’s potential for settling matters other than industrial disputes, but the logic’s application to a wider range of disagreements would seem beyond argument. After all, if a union can obtain a legally binding agreement by breaking the law, why should a poor Bunyip be denied the same option?

Mrs Richards had better begin being reasonable, as should Australia’s employers. The cricket bat is about to be fetched from the attic.


  1. "Certainly not the solicitor who will need to be paid for spelling out the law in a stern letter." So Bunyip can't resolve a dispute with an elderly female neighbour without running to a lawyer.
    Why am I not surprised?

    1. That's just puerile. Teach, why am I not surprised you have your head up your arse? Get back on the bongs, it might jazz up your commenting...

    2. Yes quite right 1735099. His propensity to advocate violence as way of setting disputes is truly appalling. But as you say "Why am I not surprised?"

      The PM is quite correct. What's the point of stirring up further trouble once agreement has been reached with unions? That would simply be vindictive and another example of the powerful trampling on the rights of powerless employee bodies. Bosses have not changed their nature in 150 years, and unions are more than ever necessary to defend the rights of workers. For Alan Joyce to blame unions for his profit results yesterday is ridiculous. It was he himself who ordered the lockout and dummy spit that caused it all. Qantas should never have been de-nationalised. If I had my way all businesses with more than 20 employees would be nationalised.

    3. You know Numbers, I usually have a lot of regard for ex-servicemen, especially in the light of having buried my own ex-serviceman sixteen months ago.

      But your continued graceless personal attacks here are wearing out that regard out in your case.

      Being an ex-serviceman doesn't excuse petty and vituperative behaviour in a man of your age.

    4. Numbers...for you to be surprised would require a least two neurones to rub together.
      Your thought processes...and your name...suggest that this is not possible.

    5. I see you have lots of spare time to miss the point with.

      Unsuccessful troll is unsuccessful.

      P.S. My numbers are much more fun...

    6. Yeah I always pictured him as the 'runs to a lawyer to resolves disputes with elderly neighbours' type too.

      But moving on to more meatier fare, do you have any thoughts on the Gillard government's scrapping of the Australian Building and Construction Commission?

    7. Since you've established that your sole purpose in visiting this site is to annoy its readers, I suggest that the professor, with 100% support of the audience, now implement Tim Blair's technological innovation, TrollDelay™, to give the rest of us time to read each post in peace before we have to deal with the child pooing on the loungeroom floor.

    8. You are not surprised because:
      1)You can not recognise satire when it hits you over the head with a 9 iron?
      2)You are 1 number short of a telephone number?
      3)You are a clown that has lost his circus?
      4) All of the above?

    9. Like a lot of other things, you obviously know nothing about the amount of court time taken up by such neighbourhood disutes over fences. Even with its own act of parliament created to deal with this sort of dispute, cranks (a class of person with which you would seem to be in perfect harmony) are everywhere.

      In your home town of Toowoomba the ignorant cockie and townie cranks fell for the obvious (and laughable) scare about recycled water being bad for your health and often, no doubt fly over to Singapore, Tuscany and elsewhere drinking the stuff day in and day out. Like fences, 'recycling' is for the others.

      M Ryutin Sydney

    10. An assertion of being able to comprehend neither the irrationality of unreasonable people nor irony; I, for one, am far from astonished.

    11. Hey 1735099, it is because the union bully boys have been doing this very thing - bullying and intimidating small and vulnerable building employers and contractors on site, the Cole Royal Commission was established. Howard legislated for the ABCC to clean out building sites of these leeches. Now Gillard has reinstated the status quo. Great for the leeches but not for the body on which they are thriving.

    12. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.February 17, 2012 at 7:13 PM

      OK Bovver Boy, take your prison number and lack of surprise outta here. Your modus operandi with old ladies or anyone else in your way is most likely Union thug standover tactics like the rest of your friends. This is clearly the way of those criminals the Bunyip targets, who are now enabled by legislation to view themselves as outside the Law as they go about their plundering via agro. That is the point of the Bunyip's musings: he is all for the Rule of Law, dimwit.

      As for letting a Solicitor tell an obstinate and misinformed old lady what her legal obligations are - some old ladies, even deaf and demented ones - get remarkably more co-operative when they (or their families/advisors) have a letter to respond to. Mrs. Richards, renowned visitor to a famous Torquay hotel, knew where her bread was buttered, which recognition led to a dramatic improvement in her hearing.

  2. 173....


    f' you're an idiot some times.

  3. Ahhh , the law of unintended consequences.
    NEVER factored in to the Gillard Government's deliberations.
    On a lighter note....the Mrs Richards character in Fawlty Towers was/is hilarious and a constant reminders that many nameless actors/actresses are masters of their craft.
    Speaking of which your crafty plan to resolve the issue with your neighbour may not be achievable despite the (best?...hardly) efforts of Gillard & Her Motley Crew.
    I have a signed, witnessed agreement with my bride of some 50 years but rest assured a Craig Thomson brain-snap will have very intended consequences.
    Your very own Mrs Richards may have some contingency plan for any entry to her boudoir and surrounds, which could result in the loss of more than your cricket bat.

  4. What a coincidence! I have a similar little old lady living next door and the side fence is dilapidated, but the horizontal beams are on the OTHER side. Yippee and thanks to your 'Mrs Richards' for saving me some money.


    PS 1735099 back again after attempting a Bunyip fisking - you obviously haven't met a 'Mrs Richards' - take another look at Fawlty Towers.

  5. "Bunyip can't resolve a dispute"...

    It all comes down to definitions; the Bunyip just assumes 'stability of possession','transference by consent' & 'rule of law'

    We're not in the least bit surprised the left consider 'property is theft' and the law to be easily rewritten by time serving union hacks and reinterpreted by their appointed activist judges,therefore the poor Bunyip's consent is not necessary and he should just lay down and take it.

    Fortunately normal programming will resume after November 2013...

  6. Numbers, what are you a child? Did you poke your tongue out as well when you posted? Why do you bother!!!

  7. "involves midnight shrieks and a broomstick"

    Be very careful Bunyip!

  8. Pile over to numbers place and go wild!
    Bring you friends.

  9. The Old and Unimproved DaveFebruary 17, 2012 at 8:13 PM

    'Human fixture' there's a flush chain attached ?

  10. What is it about the right and personal abuse? They simply can't stand contra opinions to their own, can they. Their abusive responses to 1735099 says far more about themselves than him or her.

    It's a bad habit very apparent in the comments on right wing blogs to label all proponents of opposing views as "trolls", whatever that means. They'd be far better off responding to contrary views with logical argument than spiteful abuse. It really worries me that if their side comes to power in Canberra we'll have a totalitarian government very quickly.

    1. Don't fret, hammygar, this is simply a whimsical pastime. I don't take offence. Working week on/week off allows on the off weeks, a few minutes invested here. It provides endless mirth.
      At least Bunyip has the Cojones to post my offerings. Others more timid (Blair being a fine example) run and hide.
      Your observations about what is revealed about those of the bitter Right persuasion is however apposite.

    2. Hamjar,

      You know perfectly well numbers deserved the replies he got.

      There is no logical argument to the personal attack that was his comment.

      And here you are defending the indefensible...again! you can launch your own strawman attack.

      And fyi,we already have a totalitarian govt in Canberra. Its just that its a leftwing one and so passes your scrutiny.

    3. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.February 18, 2012 at 11:12 AM

      Given your schedule above, we all look forward to your on-weeks Mr. Numeric Whimsey, when we apparently are to get a break from your totally ineffective attempts at wit and insight. Hammygar, stop acting the Prefect protecting this obvious bleeding-foot troll please. Look to your own lights, such as they are.

    4. While clearly impossible to agree with ham Fisted re his troll comments (the troll label applies to personal attacks not arguments on the point which pretty much cobers any of Numbers "points". BTW if I'm wrong I'm sure there's the opportunity for him to troll (sorry, trawl) back through the record and repeat the posts which were about the argument and not trollish personal spite.

      Having said that you're all providing this nong (deliberate personal attack) with oxygen. If you simply ignored nis trollishness and let the Prof reply to those he feels it useful to do so the the material would have the treatment it deserves.

    5. Yep, Big Ted, first rule of the internet: Dont feed the trolls.

      Its getting weird here though, Numbers latest rejoinder to the Prof was friendly....nattering on about doing the lawn early cos his neighbours don't mind.

      Guess being the resident troll brings its own set of rules.