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Thirsty Warnie’s hall of shame

Written By komlim puldel on Minggu, 29 Maret 2015 | 23.08

Shane Warne doing what he does best. Source: Splash News Australia

IF ANYONE knows a thing or two about a post-win skol, it's our Warnie.

While the former World Cup champion might have given up the baggy greens, he's still stirring the pot (or was that brew?) on the field after his latest interrogation of the Australian cricket team, where no less than three times did Warnie bring up the topic of a night on the booze after the team's glorious World Cup win.

"Are you feeling thirsty?," he asked wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.

Then he moved to batsman Steve Smith.

"Are you going to have a bit of a drink tonight too Smitty? Are you going to get thirsty as well? The boys are thirsty they seem."

And just when you thought it was over ...

"So what's the plan — besides lots of drink and that," he asked Shane Watson and Josh Hazlewood.

"How long is that going to last. Just one night, two nights? We saw (coach) Darren Lehmann say it might last a week. Do you reckon it will go a bit longer than that?"

And while the real reaction came from Twitter, we're here to heed a warning, boys, it's all fun and games — until the camera comes out.

Take note, fellas.

RELATED: FULL COVERAGE OF AUSTRALIA'S WORLD CUP WIN

RELATED: BRAD HADDIN SMASHED FOR EXUBERANT SEND OFF

Full ... Warnie swigs champagne from a bottle on the Old Trafford balcony during a celebration of Australia's win over England in the July 1997 Ashes series. Source: News Corp Australia

Beer in the ear: Warnie celebrates by sticking a beer bottle in his ear after Australia retained the Ashes. Source: News Limited

Warnie and Allan Border are sprayed with beer after winning against the West Indies in Melbourne on December 30, 1992. Picture: Peter Barnes Source: News Corp Australia

He's certainly ... ahem ... changed his look over the years. Source: News Limited

The Simone days: Warnie with now-ex-wife Simone at release of his wine collection in 2002. Source: News Limited

For a hard earned thirst, you need a big cold beer. Right, Warnie? Source: News Limited

He'll drink anything: Warne poses with a glass of wine during a break in the first test of the Pakistan v Australia series in Colombo, Sri Lanka, in 2002. Picture: Phil Hillyard. Source: News Corp Australia

1996: Australian players give David Boon a 'beer shower' for the last time after a third test victory against Sri Lanka. Source: News Corp Australia

New wine, new look. Source: News Corp Australia

The 'metrosexual' transformation began in 2002. Source: News Limited

There's something very disturbing about this. Source: News Limited

Originally published as Thirsty Warnie's hall of shame
23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

Haddin smashed for send off

Cricket World Cup: Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Johnson have struck early for Australia, taking some vital wickets in the opening stages of the World Cup final against New Zealand at the MCG.

Brad Haddin and James Faulkner give New Zealand's Grant Elliott a send off pic. Phil Hillyard Source: News Corp Australia

BRAD Haddin came under social media fire for his exuberant send off of Martin Guptill in the World Cup final.

Glenn Maxwell got the Kiwi for 15 when a slightly turning offie clipped off stump. Guptill had just gone to the top of the World Cup run scoring charts and is likely to stay there.

Amid Maxwell's joy, Australia's keeper gave Guptill a few words to send him on his way.

WATCH THE SEND OFF IN THE VIDEO ABOVE

The send off offended many on Twitter including former England bowler Alex Tudor who called Haddin a #Muppet.

Cricket World Cup: Four New Zealand batsmen have been dismissed by ducks in the World Cup final against Australia at the MCG.

Haddin wasn't done upsetting watchers.

After Grant Elliott reviewed an lbw call agains thim, and had the deicsion overturned, he exhanged heated words with Australia's keeper.

So, of course, haddin, was one the first to queue up to bid Elliott farewell at the end of his knock.

Brad Haddin gets stuck into Grant Elliott after being given out but the decision was overturned. Picture: Colleen Petch. Source: News Corp Australia

Brad Haddin and James Faulkner give New Zealand's Grant Elliott a send off. pic. Phil Hillyard Source: News Corp Australia

Cricket World Cup: Mitchell Starc gets Brendon McCullum out for a duck in the opening over of the World Cup final.

Originally published as Haddin smashed for send off

23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

The side of Mexico few tourists see

Chilling in Cabo. Nearby is a more secret spot. Picture: Mark Mitchell Source: Flickr

FAR from the sprawling, all-inclusive resorts of Mexico's famous Los Cabos is a part of the Baja California peninsula that few tourists ever see, but should.

In one of Mexico's largest federally protected conservation areas for flora and fauna is a land forested with desert plants that look like they were drawn by Dr Seuss: candle-like boojum trees and distinctively sculptural elephant trees, towering cardon cactuses and other types of succulents.

Sitting in the middle of the peninsula, this little-known spot is the Valle de los Cirios, or Valley of the Boojums.

The plants it is named for were dubbed cirios - or candles - in Spanish, evidently because of their resemblance to tapered church candles at the missions nearby. South-western naturalist Godfrey Sykes later christened that same tree the "boojum," for an imaginary animal character in Lewis Carroll's nonsense poem The Hunting of the Snark.

Birds like pelicans and ospreys abound and peninsular pronghorns, once hunted to near extinction, roam the desert landscape. Under a Mexican government program, the hoofed animals are now making a comeback from their once critically endangered status.

ICacti are silhouetted against a twilight sky in the Valle de los Cirios. Source: AP

Among the oldest known mammals in the Americas, the pronghorns are known locally as "ghosts of the desert" because their golden brown or tan colour and white markings helps camouflage them.

Inside a cave in the Valle de los Cirios. Source: AP

Nearby, visitors can see ancient cave paintings depicting deer, whales and humans with six fingers.

The stark beauty and solitude encountered are a far cry from the fancy restaurants, pools with swim-up bars, fishing, snorkelling and sunbathing popular on the southern end of the Sea of Cortez, the long slip of water sandwiched between the Baja Peninsula and Mexico's mainland. The peninsula was once eloquently described in a travel journal by American writer John Steinbeck; its stunning coral reefs were praised by ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau.

A short way to the south, magnificent grey whales arrive every year off the Pacific coast town of Guerrero Negro, following one of the world's longest migration routes. They mate and calve in the lagoons nearby.

Mexico's government says there were more than 2600 whales in the lagoons at the end of February, including adults and calves - among the highest numbers in 19 years and 10 per cent more than last season. It estimates whale-watching could continue through the end of April before the sea mammals head back to Alaska.

Guerrero Negro has a long whaling history and was named for the whaling ship Black Warrior that partially sank in the area in 1858. Also located here is the largest salt-making facility on the planet. The salt is extracted from ocean water by evaporation, taking advantage of the region's low yearly rainfall, its large areas of flatlands and high solar radiation.

Getting there

Valley of the Boojums is in the middle of the 1247km Baja California peninsula and can be reached by car. Vehicles can be rented either in Tijuana near the Mexico-US border in the north or in the resorts of La Paz or Los Cabos in the south.

Guerrero Negro can be reached by car and has a small airport with regional service. Visiting the lagoons where you can watch whales is possible only through authorised tour operators in Guerrero Negro. Guides for seeing cave drawings can also be found in Guerrero Negro.

Why not stop in Cabo for a break, on the way? Picture: Nan Palmero Source: Flickr


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

Janet and Gamble’s drunk street fight

Gamble invited the girls to Sydney ... what could possibly go wrong? Source: Foxtel

In this week's episode of Real Housewives, the ladies head north to Sydney and the situation between Gamble and Janet turns explosive as Gamble's hot-headed sister enters the fray.

Before all that, Chyka invites a few of the girls along to a marquee her company is running at the MCG for the AFL Grand Final. It's the big match between the Sydney Swans and Hawthorn — which Gamble rather adorably pronounces "Whore-fawn."

Shout-out here to Lydia, who pulls off one of the more spectacular entrances of the season when she suddenly appears outside the MCG as if she just teleported in from the future:

International glamour, like she just stepped out of a Portman's catalogue Source: Supplied

Forget footy, the girls are at the Grand Final to compete in their sport of choice: the race to see who can get offended first. Noticing that Lydia's opted for water instead of a glass of champagne, Gamble blurts out, "Are you pregnant?"

"No, are YOU?"

"NO!"

"Well cheers," Lydia snarls. "Cheers to your dogs — YOUR babies."

Both appear to be seething, having been in each other's company for a good 15 seconds. Excellent.

Drink through the awkwardness, ladies. Source: Supplied

Gamble then invites the others to join her for a weekend up in her hometown of Sydney. She works with celebrated artist Charles Billich, and he'll be holding a party at his gallery in The Rocks.

Pettifleur — socially inept at the best of times — takes this friendly invite as a cue to interrogate Gamble about her professional life, testing her story for weaknesses like a velociraptor testing the electric fences in Jurassic Park.

After asking Gamble what she does at the gallery (she works on a part-time basis, facilitating the sale of Billich's artworks) Pettifleur then asks how she would go about contacting Gamble at work and what would happen if she just cold-called the gallery and mentioned Gamble's name. She seems utterly convinced Gamble is some sort of a Catch Me If You Can-style fraudster, biding her time on a reality show while she plans her next jewel heist.

Gamble gets her own back, though.

"So Pettifleurs [getting your frenemy's name ever-so-slightly wrong: classic passive-aggressive move, good one Gumble], how's your property developing going? Did you start that or did your HUSBAND?"

DAGGERS from Pettifleurs.

Back at home and packing for the trip, Gamble confesses to Rick — who's sat in the corner stroking their Pomeranian like a not-entirely-convincing Bond villain — that she's anxious to make sure the Sydney jaunt goes well, given her past tensions with Janet. Rick's response — that a man would never have such a silly concern — is patronising and vaguely sexist, but it's all delivered in those calm, velvety Rick tones so it's hard to feel angry. The man has such a soothing presence, even the usually hyperactive Pomeranian is totally chill:

"Don't worry your pretty little head, toots." Source: Foxtel

Next up, Jackie drops in on Chyka so the pair can get on with some very serious business: they're co-organising Gamble's hens night. Trouble is, they both have very different ideas of what constitutes a good send off for single life. Gamble's all about fine dining and silver service, whereas one gets the impression Jackie would happily down a bottle of La Mascara in the nearest park before hitting up Newcastle RSL.

"Gamble doesn't want strippers and she doesn't want it to be tacky," Chyka warns.

Jackie's face:

Don't worry Jackie, she didn't say anything about penis straws. Source: Foxtel

Chyka's got a wild side, mind you. Jackie asks what happened at HER hen's night before she married Bruce, and Chyka cheerfully recalls some business involving a group of male sheep auctioneers who stripped her to her underwear in a crowded restaurant and auctioned her off, while her own mother egged them all on. Wow, Chyka, that sounds … really upsetting?

Next we're with Gamble, Pettifleur, Janet and Gina in Sydney, where all four appear to have dressed as Logie Awards for their big girl's weekend:

The women's Dress Like A Ferrero Rocher contest ended in a four-way tie. Source: Foxtel

As they prep in their hotel suite ahead of the gallery party, Gamble tells the other girls about her admiration for artist Billich, who is an old family friend.

Again apparently testing for weaknesses, Pettifleur starts spouting 101 facts about Charles Billich.

"Charles is actually quite amazing. He's got some paintings at the White House, and United Nations headquarters, and the Vatican," she says.

Gina quite reasonably asks how Pettifleur suddenly knows so much about Billich — did she Google the guy? For some reason, Pettifleur interprets this innocent question as a HUGE insult.

"I know how to do my research! Not Google, don't worry!"

If not Google, then what? Did she type his name into AltaVista? Hey Pettifleur, is your MySpace profile still bitchswitcher_69? Add me on MSN babes!

Gamble says that the girls will meet her sister at the gallery: "You'll be seeing her pre-op," is how she explains it. No, this isn't a Chaz Bono situation: Gamble's sister Tempest is about to go under the knife for a variety of terrifying cosmetic procedures at her more surgically-altered sister's insistence.

The scene inside the gallery is a more than a little like visiting the Capitol in The Hunger Games: those assembled have tight faces, bizarre clothes and a variety of overfed companion animals. One woman brought her cat. To a party. In an art gallery. At one point the camera lingers on the woman and her cat as they share a really weird, intimate moment:

"Hush now, human underling, and fetch me another champagne" Source: Foxtel

Billich's wife, Christa, introduces herself to the Housewives and regales them with an entirely relatable story about taking her little dog to a posh restaurant in Monaco and insisting it sit and eat off the table with her.

Fancy dog is better than all of us and he knows it. Source: Foxtel

Gamble introduces sister Tempest to the girls, and barely have they said hello when ol' Tempey starts tearing shreds off Janet. It's … intense, and suggests she's heard a very exaggerated version of the events that went on between Janet and her sister.

"Now listen, I've been wanting to talk to you," she says, pointing an accusatory finger.

"I've known this young woman her entire life [despite the use of 'young', we're going to assume she's talking about Gamble here], and I don't think you have any idea how much you've upset her when you make up bullsh*t about her."

Janet cuts in to explain she didn't make anything up, plastering on the sort of terrified grin you give when a crazy person corners you at a train station to ask if you want to find out who REALLY did 9/11.

"Oh CRAP. It's indefensible, it's not fair. Don't you DARE do that to her! She is the most beautiful, lovely, intelligent person I have ever had the PRIVILEGE to know, and you doing that sh*t to her hurts me, hurts her. I KNOW you made it up. Get some F*CKING evidence, get some evidence!"

Tempest, shown here busily getting all her facial expressions out of the way before her upcoming Botox treatment. Source: Foxtel

Gamble stays conspicuously silent through the whole rant, which riles Janet up no end:

"I have come here to support you because I thought we were putting all this behind us. I can't be attacked every time I see you, by you or your family, over a story that's been made up. I won't do it."

And with that, she's out.

Pettifleur then explains to Tempest that she's got the wrong end of the stick and Janet was merely passing on a rumour to Gamble, as a friendly heads-up.

"Ohhhh, OK. Oh. Probably need to apologise to her, then," an instantly calm Tempest says. YA DON'T SAY.

With Janet having fled out onto the streets of The Rocks — possibly in search of an opal, or Ken Done — Gamble trails behind her. Never one to miss out on a bit of drama, Gina follows in hot pursuit.

This is it folks: The Housewives have gone rogue and they are prowling the streets of Sydney at night.

Real Housewives production assistant: "WHERE DID WE PUT THE TRANQUILLISER DARTS?!?!" Source: Foxtel

They stop outside a pub, Gamble pleading with Janet to come back inside, yanking her limbs as Janet angrily tries to wrestle free. Behind them, bemused drinkers look on.

Could you imagine having a beer at your local when three Real Housewives stagger past in gold frocks having a stand-up fight? Maybe we've been recapping this show for too long but literally nothing would make us happier.

Punters enjoying the 10 o'clock floor show. Source: Foxtel

Back at the gallery, Tempest has apparently been delivered a fate worse than death: getting stuck talking to Pettifleur. Seems Pettifleur has spent the past 10 minutes chastising Tempest for speaking out without knowing all the facts, and she can't take much more.

"This is boring. You're going over and over the same thing, and it's getting pretty boring. I've heard you, I have HEARD YOU."

"I'm not boring! Don't call me boring!" Pettifleur snaps, no doubt wondering why people keep telling her that so often.

The next day, all the girls board a yacht for a cruise around Sydney Harbour — all except Janet, who still hasn't cooled down after last night's street fight.

Some have gone to more trouble than others to dress to the nautical theme.

"One thing I didn't want to look like was a dress-up comical queen, so my outfit is a bit of class and LOTS of sophistication," Pettifleur insists. Here's her sophisticated ensemble:

May god bless Pettifleur and all who sail in her. Source: Foxtel

Gamble can't help but feel upset that Janet didn't join them — and all because of a rumour that got out of hand. Charles Billich's wife offers some sage advice:

"A rumour is a rumour and nothing else. What's a rumour? A cloud in the sky!"

If a cloud ever accuses YOU of being a stripper, please seek medical assistance.

After the boat ride, Janet shows her face once more when she joins the others for dinner. She immediately tries to initiate a private conversation with Gamble to clear the air. Gina gets involved, but Janet tells her to mind her own business.

"OK, well, you're at a table with five other people, so I'm not sure that's going to work," is Gina's response.

Janet suggests that Gina leave the table if she doesn't like it.

"No, I'm not doing a big 'storm off like a skank down the street' thing!"

Eventually — no doubt after an off-camera meeting with a producer pleading them to progress to the next agreed storyline, lest the season last for 37 years — the girls all make a pledge not to discuss the whole Janet/Gamble drama any longer. Let's see how long that lasts.

Having promised to drop the topic, Janet's now not quite sure what to do with herself:

Cat got your tongue, Janet? No, really, did the creepy cat from the art gallery do something to you? Source: Foxtel

Next week: Gamble enters her wildly undertrained Pomeranian into a dog show, Jackie and Chyka choose the strippers for Gamble's hen's night, and the girls all fly to the Philippines for a holiday because sometimes it's just nice to get drunk and fight in a different country.

The Real Housewives of Melbourne screens 8.30pm Sundays on Foxtel's Arena Channel — check back right after each episode to read our weekly recap.

In the meantime, check in with recapper Nick Bond on Twitter (@bondnickbond) to discuss which has had a more devastating effect on your life — Andrea leaving Real Housewives or Zayn leaving One Direction.


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

Heartless selfies at NY blast site

Shameless ... Amid the backdrop of fire, seven smiling women used a selfie stick to snap a cheery photo of themselves. Picture: Twitter Source: Supplied

At least two people were missing Friday after an explosion Thursday afternoon destroyed three buildings in New York City's East Village. WSJ's Jennifer Weiss reports. Photo: Nancy Borowick/Press Pool

SELF-ABSORBED sightseers are treating the New York's East Village gas-explosion site like a tourist attraction, shooting grinning selfies of themselves even as rescuers search for life in the ruins where two bodies might still be buried.

Amid the backdrop of the devastation wrought by the explosion, fire and collapse of three buildings that injured 25 people, seven smiling women used a selfie stick late on Friday to snap a cheery photo of themselves, reported the The New York Post.

"Disgusting beyond words," wrote a commenter on the local-news blog EV Grieve, which reposted the snap.

A pile of debris ... all that remains at the site of a building explosion in the East Village neighbourhood of New York. The powerful blast and fire sent flames soaring and debris flying around the city. Picture: AP Photo/The New York Times, Nancy Borowick Source: AP

"Take a look at these people. Remember their faces," wrote Diane DiDonato, of Brooklyn, on Facebook. "They don't deserve those smiles. People are dying behind them."

Others called it "disaster porn."

"It's heartless," said Maurice Herz, 83, of the East Village.

"THIS IS A TRAGEDY NOT A TOURIST ATTRACTION," one frustrated neighbour wrote in a sign taped to a front door on nearby 7th Street. "SHOW SOME RESPECT," the sign demanded.

Other selfie-snappers included Christina Freundlich, whose LinkedIn profile lists her as a communications director for the Iowa Democratic Party. She posted a grinning photo of herself at the scene giving the peace sign.

The image has since been deleted from her Instagram account.

Regretful post ... Chrstina Freundlich posted an Instagram near the security perimeter with the peace sign and caption "Scene of the Accident". Picture: Instagram Source: Supplied

"Too soon," one follower chided.

Ms Freundlich couldn't be reached for comment Saturday.

East Villager Pablo Fernandez wore a green "Elf" shirt and red and white leggings as he posed for photos near a barricade before his bachelor party.

"I'm totally ridiculous, but I'm not normally like this," Mr Fernandez said.

His pals shot a video of him dancing near the site.

"This is so we could send the pictures to our friends in Spain and say, 'Look what we did,' " said a friend who declined to give his name.

Jeanie Slade's disaster-site selfie showed her and a pal flashing open-mouthed grins and the hashtags "#beingtourists and "#weresocreepy."

Asked about the selfie by The Post, Ms Slade called it "satire."

"My heart goes out to the people of New York, and this satire post was in poor taste," she insisted. "My intention was to point out how many people post selfies in inappropriate times and it backfired."

Meanwhile, the grim work continued at the site Saturday, as 60 firefighters extinguished the remaining flames amid the search for survivors.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio visited an East Village firehouse to thank firefighters. He met with hero firefighter Michael Shepherd, who was off-duty but joined the search for people trapped.

"Your dad is a real hero," the mayor said to his son, Michael Patrick, 10.

"He's my hero," Mr Shepherd told the mayor of his son.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio meets firefighters at the site of a building explosion. Picture: AP Photo/The New York Times, Nancy Borowick Source: AP

The FDNY said it would take a week to go through the ruins, with first responders working around-the-clock while dogs sniff the debris.

"It's going to be slow and arduous to dig out, search through the rubble," FDNY Commissioner Dan Nigro said.

Two people — Nicholas Figueroa, 23, of Harlem, and Moises Locon, 27, of Elmhurst, Queens — were still missing Saturday. Mr Figueroa had been on a date with Theresa Galarza, 22, at the ground floor Sushi Park restaurant and was last seen going to get the check. The blast sent her flying across the street. Mr Locon had worked as a busboy at Sushi Park.

Missing ... Nicholas Figueroa is still missing. He was on the ground floor in a restaurant at the time of the explosion. Picture: Facebook Source: Supplied

Red Cross workers comforted his distraught brother, Zacharias, at the scene on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Con Ed said that on August 6, a meter reader discovered that the gas line in the Sushi restaurant at 121 Second Ave. — that seven months later erupted in a fireball — had been improperly tampered with.

Spokesman Allan Drury said the resulting leaks caused the utility to determine the situation was "hazardous'' — so it cut off all gas to the building for some 10 days.


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

The biggest tax reform since the 1950s

Joe Hockey, the Treasurer of Australia in the Abbott Government wants to overhaul the tax system: Pic: Scott Barbour/Getty Images. Source: Getty Images

WANT to pay less tax? Tell Joe Hockey how and why and your ideas just might end up in the Coalition's election policies next year.

That's the broad promise from the Federal Government today as it gingerly prepares for a tax reform campaign at the 2016 polls where it will hope to win approval for significant changes, including less reliance on taxing individual and corporate incomes.

The Government also wants to eliminate differences in the tax treatment of various types of retirement savings, and to reduce the number of special concessions which make the tax system complex and expensive.

Treasurer Hockey is releasing a tax discussion paper today and inviting all interested groups and individuals to contribute proposals on the questions it outlines. "Lower, simpler, fairer," is his tax system objective from this "conversation".

Tax reform is set to be on the agenda for the next Federal Election. Source: Getty Images

But don't expect a quick response from the Government. And such are the leisurely pace and care-not-to-scare political management priorities there will be nothing about these potential reforms in the next two Federal Budgets.

Contributions will be distilled into a discussion paper of options – a green paper – late this year and then the Government will produce a further refinement into the actual policy it will take to the election scheduled for late 2016.

The process of tax reform is likely to be a long one. Source: Supplied

The process is in sharp contrast to the Coalition's approach to the 2013 election, when the emphasis was on dismantling Labor programs rather than creating new ones, and is a gentler strategy than the Budget last May which was had shocks, surprises, broken promises and few sweeteners.

The inspiration appears to be former Liberal John Howard's measured and consultative delivery of a GST, the last major tax reform.

The discussion paper says Australia's overall tax burden is relatively low compared to other developed countries with the Federal Government raising 81 per cent of total tax revenue, much of which goes to the states to make up 45 per cent of their income.

In a clear indication of the direction the Government would like the debate to take, the paper says Treasury research estimates each additional $1 collected in company income tax

reduces the living standards of Australian households by around 50 cents in the long run through reduced investment.

The last major tax reform in Australia came during the Howard Government when the GST was introduced. Source: NewsComAu

And it points out some 70 per cent of revenue is from income tax, compared to 60 per cent in the 1950s. And inflation increasingly means workers are forced to pay higher tax as wages go up even though the buying power of their pay packet doesn't rise as fast – bracket creep.

Around 300,000 Australians are expected to move into the second highest tax bracket over the next two years.

"Australia relies heavily on income taxes, particularly company income tax, compared to

other developed countries as well as our Asian competitors," said the discussion paper.

"Australia's reliance on income taxes remains much the same as it was in the 1950s, despite changes in the economy, and is projected to increase further, largely as a result of wages growth leading to individuals paying higher average rates of tax (bracket creep)."

Some 70 per cent of revenue is from income tax and it's pretty much been that way since the 1950s. Source: News Limited

The paper highlights differing tax treatment for types of retirement savings.

"At one end of the spectrum, savings held in the family home are taxed at average effective tax rates approaching zero. At the other end of the spectrum, savings held as financial deposits are taxed at full marginal rates, without any recognition for the costs of inflation," says the paper.

"The policy rationale for these differences is not always clear and can distort taxpayers'

savings decisions. This has implications both for efficiently allocating savings in the economy

and distributing risk across households."

Super gets taxed at different rates depending where it is nested. Source: News Limited

It also wants to make the tax system less complicated, possibly by removing "tax concessions aimed at assisting particular groups".

"Another reason is the regular 'patching' of the law to fix narrow problems or provide certainty for taxpayers and transactions without fully considering consequences for the system as a whole," the discussion paper says.

"Overly risk-averse attitudes from policy advisers and administrators, combined with complex legislative drafting styles, have also led to complexity. Governance arrangements should ensure tax design and administration practices minimise unnecessary complexity and support the implementation of sound tax."

Feeling this sensation after tax is taken out of your pay packet? Source: News Limited

The formal submissions process continues until Monday, June 1.

If you have any questions or comments, you are welcome to contact the Tax White Paper

Task Force at bettertax@treasury.gov.au or at:

Tax White Paper Task Force

The Treasury

Langton Crescent

PARKES ACT 2600


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

Frantic captain heard on black box

The Germanwings co-pilot who 'deliberately' crashed the plane sought psychiatric help for depression in 2009

Investigation continues ... the personal life of Andreas Lubitz is being carefully looked at. Picture: AFP Source: AFP

  • Black box reveals pilot shouting, passengers screaming
  • Co-pilot 'feared vision problems would ground him'
  • DNA found from 78 victims
  • Girlfriend of crash co-pilot reportedly pregnant

THE captain of the passenger jet that is believed to have been deliberately crashed into the French Alps reportedly shouted at the co-pilot to 'open the damn door' as he desperately tried to get into the locked cockpit.

French officials say the plane's black box voice recorder indicates that Andreas Lubitz locked the captain out of the cockpit of the Germanwings jet and steered the flight into a mountainside, killing all 150 people on board.

They believe that the captain, Patrick Sondheimer, tried desperately to reopen the door during the Barcelona to Dusseldorf flight's eight-minute descent after he left to use the toilet.

Forensic work ... Most body parts were being winched up to helicopters before being transported to a lab in the nearby town of Seynes. Picture: AFP/Anne-Christine Poujoulat Source: AFP

The German mass-circulation Bild's Sunday edition reported that data from the cockpit recorder showed the captain shouted "For God's sake, open the door", as passengers' screams could be heard in the background.

It said "loud metallic blows" against the cockpit door could then be heard, before another warning alarm went off and then the pilot is heard to scream to a silent Lubitz in the cockpit "open the damn door".

Bild said that, earlier in Tuesday's flight, the captain was heard explaining to his colleague that he had not had time to go to the toilet before takeoff.

Prayers ... a priest prepares a ceremony for victims of the crash, at Notre-Dame-du-bourg Cathedral. Picture: AFP/Jeff Pachoud Source: AFP

Lubitz 'hid illness from employers'

As investigators seek to build up a picture of Lubitz and any possible motives, media reports have emerged that he suffered from eye problems, adding to earlier reports he was severely depressed.

German prosecutors believe Lubitz hid an illness from his airline but have not specified the ailment, and said he had apparently been written off sick on the day the Airbus crashed.

Bild and the New York Times, citing two officials with knowledge of the investigation, said Lubitz had sought treatment for problems with his sight.

The 27-year-old had been hospitalised as late as a fortnight ago with authorities not ruling out his eyes issue were psychosomatic.

Troubled man ... Andreas Lubitz, the co-pilot of the doomed Germanwings airliner. Picture: Wolfgang Nass/BILD Source: Supplied

Revelations by his ex-lover, a flight attendant identified under the assumed name Maria W, that he was a tormented man and increasingly becoming erratic was prompted by his fear his mental and eye health for which he was receiving psychiatric and neurological treatment may deem him unfit to fly.

The problem is thought to be a retinal detachment, Bild said.

Authorities have found several torn up sick notes in his Dusseldorf apartment that excused him from work but apparently were never given to his bosses.

Girlfriend rumoured to be pregnant

Bild also reported that Lubitz's girlfriend, with whom he lived in the western city of Dusseldorf, was believed to be pregnant.

It gave no sources but said the teacher, who taught maths and English, had told pupils a few weeks ago she was expecting a baby.

It came as new claims suggest Andreas Lubitz was obsessed with the Alps and specifically the southern region which he would later crash his Germanwings flight into, having flown gliders over the area years earlier.

Distraught ... Lubitz's father is a "broken man", say mayor Bernard Bartolini, who governs the town next to the crash site. Mr Bartolini spoke to the copilot's father at a memorial for relatives on Thursday. Picture: Getty Images Source: Getty Images

Bad eyesight ... Andreas Lubitz was reportedly suffering from deteriorating eyesight. Picture: AFP Photo, Team Mueller Source: AFP

Another woman, Maria W, dated Lubitz for five months last year but broke it off because she felt he was not right, was volatile and had a temper. He had been in a previous long-term relationship of several years with a woman he met at Burger King where they both worked in 2008 in Montabaur in Germany and since Maria had been dating another flight attendant.

Remote terrain ... Chasseurs Alpins rescuers, the elite mountain infantry of the French Army, working at the crash site. Picture: AFP/Francis Pellier Source: AFP

Unprecedented difficulty ... some of the recovery work has to be performed by abseiling. Picture: AFP/Francis Pellier Source: AFP

'During conversations he'd suddenly throw a tantrum and scream at me," Maria said. "I was afraid. He even once locked me in the bathroom for a long time."

She said after she had heard about the crash she recalled a conversation Lubitz had with her.

"When I heard about the crash, there was just a tape playing in my head of what he said: 'One day I will do something that will change the system and everyone will then know my name and remember me'," she recalled

"I did not know what he meant by that at the time, but now it's clear."

"The torn up sick notes make sense now to me and were a clear sign that he did not want to admit that his big dream of flying as a captain was over," Maria said.

Evidence found ... sick notes saying Lubitz was unfit to fly were found in his home. Picture: Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images Source: Getty Images

DNA found from 78 crash victims

Investigators have faced a huge task in trying to recover bodies and search for a second 'black box' at the site, which is extremely hard to access and has required specialist mountain police to accompany search teams.

"We haven't found a single body intact," said Patrick Touron, deputy director of the police's criminal research institute.

He said the difficulty of the recovery mission was "unprecedented".

"We have slopes of 40 to 60 degrees, falling rocks, and ground that tends to crumble," said Touron.

"Some things have to be done by abseiling."

Helicopters have been going back and forth to the nearby town of Seynes - around 60 trips a day.

"Since safety is key, the recovery process is a bit slow, which is a great regret," Touron said.

Most body parts were being winched up to helicopters before being transported to a lab in the nearby town of Seynes where a 50-strong team of forensic doctors and dentists and police identification specialists is working.

Between 400 and 600 body parts were currently being examined, Touron said.

Reflection ... relatives and members of emergency services at a makeshift monument to honour the victims of Germanwings flight 4U9525, near the crash site. Picture: Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images Source: Getty Images

Hundreds show solidarity at service

At the Notre-Dame-du-Bourg Cathedral, 40km from the crash site, several hundred parishioners from the district as well as members of the French and Spanish branches of the Red Cross - dispatched to assist those distressed by the incident - prayed for the victims and their families.

150 candles were lit and prayers offered for each of the passengers and crew, including Lubitz.

The Digne archbishop spoke to people's feelings of grief and confusion about the tragedy.

"We are in deep distress, plunged into sadness, unable to understand, and have strong feelings of unfairness," archbishop Jean-Philippe Nault, told some 500 faithful.

He said they had come "to express their friendship" for the families and friends of those killed on board the Airbus A320 travelling from Barcelona to Dusseldorf when it went down.

Elements of the service were given by priests from Spain and Germany in their native tongue.

One parishioner Franciscan Convent nun Sister Rosilda said it was important to attend and show solidarity.

'Plunged into sadness' ... the Digne archbishop spoke to people's feelings of grief and confusion about the tragedy. Picture: Ella Pellegrini Source: News Corp Australia

"We cannot understand this pilot and why he did this," she said. "But we pray for the families, the victims and the pilot as well."

A father's pain

The father of one of the victims who visited a memorial near the crash site in the village of Le Vernet said airlines to take greater care over pilots' welfare.

Philip Bramley's 28-year-old son Paul died in the crash.

"I believe the airlines should be more transparent and our finest pilots looked after properly," Mr Bramley, from Hull in northern England said yesterday. "We put our lives and our children's lives in their hands. "What is relevant, is that it should never happen again; my son and everyone on that plane should not be forgotten, ever."

Lubitz had frequented a gliding club near the crash site as a child with his parents.

Challenging ... a 50-strong team of forensic doctors and dentists and police identification specialists is working on victim identification. Picture: AFP/Gendarmerie Nationale Source: AFP

According to Francis Kefer, a member of the club in the town of Sisteron about 50km from the crash site, Lubitz and other members of his German glider club visited the region regularly between 1996 and 2003.

When Lubitz crashed he would have flown over the peaks and major turning points for gliders that he would have done years earlier in his glider.

Boyhood dream to fly ... The LSC Westerwald aviation club where Lubitz was a member. Picture: AFP/Roberto Pfeil Source: AFP


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More

Nothing about this should inspire a selfie

Shameless ... Amid the backdrop of fire, seven smiling women used a selfie stick to snap a cheery photo of themselves. Picture: Twitter Source: Supplied

At least two people were missing Friday after an explosion Thursday afternoon destroyed three buildings in New York City's East Village. WSJ's Jennifer Weiss reports. Photo: Nancy Borowick/Press Pool

SELF-ABSORBED sightseers are treating the New York's East Village gas-explosion site like a tourist attraction, shooting grinning selfies of themselves even as rescuers search for life in the ruins where two bodies might still be buried.

Amid the backdrop of the devastation wrought by the explosion, fire and collapse of three buildings that injured 25 people, seven smiling women used a selfie stick late on Friday to snap a cheery photo of themselves, reported the The New York Post.

"Disgusting beyond words," wrote a commenter on the local-news blog EV Grieve, which reposted the snap.

A pile of debris ... all that remains at the site of a building explosion in the East Village neighbourhood of New York. The powerful blast and fire sent flames soaring and debris flying around the city. Picture: AP Photo/The New York Times, Nancy Borowick Source: AP

"Take a look at these people. Remember their faces," wrote Diane DiDonato, of Brooklyn, on Facebook. "They don't deserve those smiles. People are dying behind them."

Others called it "disaster porn."

"It's heartless," said Maurice Herz, 83, of the East Village.

"THIS IS A TRAGEDY NOT A TOURIST ATTRACTION," one frustrated neighbour wrote in a sign taped to a front door on nearby 7th Street. "SHOW SOME RESPECT," the sign demanded.

Other selfie-snappers included Christina Freundlich, whose LinkedIn profile lists her as a communications director for the Iowa Democratic Party. She posted a grinning photo of herself at the scene giving the peace sign.

The image has since been deleted from her Instagram account.

Regretful post ... Chrstina Freundlich posted an Instagram near the security perimeter with the peace sign and caption "Scene of the Accident". Picture: Instagram Source: Supplied

"Too soon," one follower chided.

Ms Freundlich couldn't be reached for comment Saturday.

East Villager Pablo Fernandez wore a green "Elf" shirt and red and white leggings as he posed for photos near a barricade before his bachelor party.

"I'm totally ridiculous, but I'm not normally like this," Mr Fernandez said.

His pals shot a video of him dancing near the site.

"This is so we could send the pictures to our friends in Spain and say, 'Look what we did,' " said a friend who declined to give his name.

Jeanie Slade's disaster-site selfie showed her and a pal flashing open-mouthed grins and the hashtags "#beingtourists and "#weresocreepy."

Asked about the selfie by The Post, Ms Slade called it "satire."

"My heart goes out to the people of New York, and this satire post was in poor taste," she insisted. "My intention was to point out how many people post selfies in inappropriate times and it backfired."

Meanwhile, the grim work continued at the site Saturday, as 60 firefighters extinguished the remaining flames amid the search for survivors.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio visited an East Village firehouse to thank firefighters. He met with hero firefighter Michael Shepherd, who was off-duty but joined the search for people trapped.

"Your dad is a real hero," the mayor said to his son, Michael Patrick, 10.

"He's my hero," Mr Shepherd told the mayor of his son.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio meets firefighters at the site of a building explosion. Picture: AP Photo/The New York Times, Nancy Borowick Source: AP

The FDNY said it would take a week to go through the ruins, with first responders working around-the-clock while dogs sniff the debris.

"It's going to be slow and arduous to dig out, search through the rubble," FDNY Commissioner Dan Nigro said.

Two people — Nicholas Figueroa, 23, of Harlem, and Moises Locon, 27, of Elmhurst, Queens — were still missing Saturday. Mr Figueroa had been on a date with Theresa Galarza, 22, at the ground floor Sushi Park restaurant and was last seen going to get the check. The blast sent her flying across the street. Mr Locon had worked as a busboy at Sushi Park.

Missing ... Nicholas Figueroa is still missing. He was on the ground floor in a restaurant at the time of the explosion. Picture: Facebook Source: Supplied

Red Cross workers comforted his distraught brother, Zacharias, at the scene on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Con Ed said that on August 6, a meter reader discovered that the gas line in the Sushi restaurant at 121 Second Ave. — that seven months later erupted in a fireball — had been improperly tampered with.

Spokesman Allan Drury said the resulting leaks caused the utility to determine the situation was "hazardous'' — so it cut off all gas to the building for some 10 days.


23.08 | 0 komentar | Read More
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