Cheeseburger Gothic

Prepping for Pucka.

Posted February 8, 2010 by John Birmingham
I fly down to Melbourne next Sunday for my gig with the army's force development chaps out at Puckapunyal. I'm doing the better part of an arvo's sesh this time, as opposed to giving a little talk like last, so I've been turning my mind to how best I might use that time.

My role is get people thinking outside the big old green box.

I'm considering a couple of world building exercises and some blue sky sessions on future tech. When we've done that I might divide the group up and set them a few scenarios to work through. See what we can come up with.

Just don't tell Abe. Powered Armour is probably going to be very expensive.

As for any Melbourne catch ups, I have one spanner to throw in your works.

Sunday is Valentine's Day.

I am back in April, however.

176 Responses to ‘Prepping for Pucka.’

Paul Nicholas Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
First of all, I find the word "Puckapunyal" hilarious.

Second, reading your plans, I realize how unsuited I am to do what you do: if I were in your position I would put my audience into groups and give them exercises designed to get them in touch with their true feelings.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Sweet.

For me the interesting "what ifs" often revolve around the removal of a key logistic pin or assumption, eg what if you are in X Y or Z scenario and for reasons unknown you have no; fuel OR comms OR fresh water OR air back up. What Do You Do?

You can't really train for every possible eventuality but you can train a mind to think laterally.

Would be interesting & I hope you are charging them consultant rates.

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Catty puts forth...

Posted February 8, 2010
Oh. You have a point, JB. A night with you and the Melbourne Burgers, or wild monkey sex with extra jam? No brainer - I'll see you in April.

PNB, I know you're a Seppo and all, but here in Aus we have laws against that kind of touching.

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Moko has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
I would make them give me a hands on on all the weapons, for research purposes, of course.

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Tarl reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
Slightly modify NowhereBob's suggestions - rather than "no fuel", make it "no ressuply of fuel" (i.e., the rest of the army gets busy fighting killer bees or something), or instead of "no comms", make it "Sunspots create too much static for long-distance radio" (allowing for use of wire or fiber-optic comms).

If you make the logistic constraint too severe, the scenario becomes too simple - no fuel translates to "we sit or we move at walking pace with what we can carry". With no resupply, prioritizing fuel uses becomes much more important.

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sibeen mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
We're being tossed over due to fucking valentines day...unbelievable!

Thank god this is one that my wife doesn't go in for; I have enough trouble with birthdays and Christmas to add another to the list.

Besides, living with me is like one continuous valentines day.

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
What you do with soldier boys on Valentine's Day is really none of my business.

(alerting the paparazzi....)

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
Maybe we need to start a thread with funny suburb names for PNB/The rest of the seppos.

Mainly because I've got nothing to contribute to this one.

Unless you want, you know...Faff.

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Madam Morgana ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB, at Pucka their true feelings are all based around the delight one feels when a strategic blast of sniper fire causes the enemy's brains &/or vital organs to spray out over a wide arc...

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
Catty - I've been reading up on Queensland's Anti Street March prosecutions (some obscure law students got arrested, some Quakers were cited for singing hymns without a permit) and I've been paying attention to SA internet filters and brown paper bag rules for the transport of R rated materials. So I'm not surprised y'all got rules against that kind of touching.

Blue Sky brainstorming I understand, but I'm still trying to figure out what an "arvo’s sesh" is, although I am fairly confident John is using it in a context that has nothing to do with Arvo Tuominen, the famous Finnish revolutionary, journalist and politician. Anyone care to educate this Seppo and clue me in on what that is?

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sibeen reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB, arvo = afternoon.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
Oh.

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Madam Morgana asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
And a sesh has several meanings, the most literal of which is abbr= session.

But 'a session' or 'sesh' is also slang derived from the times when pubs (in seppo world, bars) were only permitted to open for a few hours a time (or sesh). So you had the 6 o'clock swill, when men would neck as much beer as possible just before closing... and then often regurgitate it on the facade of the pub soon after. Heritage pubs in Brisbane are still tiled up to the spew splash line.

'Sesh' then became a period of time spent smoking cannibis, as in 'Hey, Johnno, I've just scored some wicked bush bud. How's about coming round for a sesh?'

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Paul Nicholas Boylan asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
"Sesh" I sussed. But "arvo" was new to me. I am always happy to learn new Australian slang.

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Quokka ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Well bugger me.

do you know your way around that one?

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Abigail mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB- Snap! Yes,I've always thought that "Puckapunyal" is about the funniest sounding name for anything, ever- and especially so when John (fkn)Schumann uses it in his very serious song about war.

I used to think people were saying "fuck a fuck a"

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Abigail asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Good idea, JB. I was planning to go but until I saw this I completely forgot it was next w/e so that's pretty helpful.

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
JB - take Hav along to talk about FERALS!!! and show some home vids of his shed. Then get the groups to figure out ways of CApPiNG FKN MUPPETS!!! armed only with an enduro bike, a can of VB and a pack of durries.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
I said it is hilarious, not the funniest. Maiden Gully (Victoria), Bobbin Head (NSW) and Iron Knob (SA) are much funnier city/town names IMHO.

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Chaz has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
I've got no doubt that Naut will be brave and be available to play!!!

Hope you have fun anyway even though numbers will be low...

Might not be over in April now as just found one of my collegues is away for alot of march/april and the course I wanted to go on is the day after she comes back. But all things are in theory possible.

BTW my instruction manual for Dragon is really thin, were you reading the right thing?

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB- There is also Rooty Hill.

And here in Canberra inexplicably they recently created a suburb called Beard.

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
um...next SUNDAY...I gather you mean...THIS SUNDAY as THIS sunday is Valentines day and NEXT sunday which happens to be the one AFTER this SUNDAY which is Valentines day, would NOT be valentines day.

Now..Care to enlighten us all on WTF is going on?

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Sweet Jane Says puts forth...

Posted February 8, 2010
Defense Minister Joel Fitzgibbon told federal parliament, "The defense budget is in a mess. And many of the capability projects we've inherited are in crisis."

"The cost of sustaining capability has been alarmingly underestimated and underfunded," he continued. Fitzgibbon said the "single biggest challenge" facing the 51,000-strong Australian Defense Force (ADF) was a shortage of skilled personnel.

What should Australia do to attract skilled personnel while staying within the bounds of the military's budget?

J.

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HAVOCK asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Abi..try

Rapanyup

or Mt Arapilies

THERBS...LOL..I fear they might not handle the amount of DEVINE light I would shed on all matters relating to our brave souls in the services..

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Sweet Jane Says asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Uranium-235 occurs naturally in Australia and has the distinction of being the only naturally occurring fissile isotope. Australia also has large deposits of thorium. Thorium is used as a fertile material for producing nuclear fuel. 232Th will absorb slow neutrons to produce 233U, which is fissile.

Australia exists in relatively close proximity to the largest population of Muslims in the world. How should Australia protect its natural deposits of WMD making materials?

J.

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
SJS- the forces have had a long history of losing pilots to commercial airlines --well, they do a lot more to encourage them to stay these days. Still. there are health issues flying those jets and people get tired. They lose doctors to civilian hospitals...they need to stop sending them to war to get killdeded, mesuspects.

I guess it's a lot more complicated than that though.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
Jane - So are you arguing that Uranium + Muslims nearby = Muslims invading Australia to take Uranium? I've never heard such a stereotype, and I love it! I am imagining a red neck with a tractor hat warning "if ya got any Youranium, you better protect it from them Mooslams"

Is that what you have in mind?

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Quokka would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB there's a suburb in Perth named Innaloo.

I have a cousin there.

My great, great, great grandfather lived at a place in South Australia called Biscuit Flat.

Not, as one might think, because the place is flat as a FKN biscuit, but because there's rocks there that resemble biscuits.

When the men came back from WW2 and they were given their allotments, a lot of them were given shit pieces of land to work. When I went through there a few years ago one of the old WW2 vets gave me a 'biscuit' from his allotment as a memento. They're really weird little rocks.

I'm sure I've told this story before.

Where's my valium? I need a nap and a lie down.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka, I thought that story was utterly charming, and no fooling. I place it right up there with barnes or bob telling the story about his father and the Furphy water cart.

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Otto reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
try Dunedoo or Wee Waa in NSW, but I suspect the former would be lost on those undeucated in the Australian outdoor toilet.

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Moko would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
Puckapunyal is all that funny if you consider: Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu

http://tinyurl.com/kk7d8p

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Moko puts forth...

Posted February 8, 2010
*isn't

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Jane - good questions and they'll be answered in due course, along the lines set out by the steering committee in its directions to the working party in respect of the issues raised by yourself. And let me say that we appreciate your concern and look forward to responding in the fullness of time at the appropriate juncture in proceedings.

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Moko reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
Jane - "How should Australia protect its natural deposits of WMD making materials?"

From Muslims?. lol

...and I love it when you cut and paste from Wikipedia. It makes me lolz.

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
Hvk, are you giving faff the hint "rappanyup" now? Ive not heard of that place.

One of my favourites (ie., I think it's cool) is that town in Queensland called 1770.

Quoks- Biscuit Flats sounds like it should be a movie or a comic.

But nowhere beats Canberra for outright stupid names because many of them are named after politicians and public servants which is a bit stuffy. ie- Downer , anyone?

Then there's Gordon.And Bruce.

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Quokka mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
We have new suburbs called McLean and Warner, Abi. If the latter has some brothers maybe we'll get Bugs Bunny.

But yes, Deception Bay belongs much closer to Canberra, really.

Heard of Broken Hill and Humpty Doo, PNB?

I've found the most obscure place names when I've been scanning the WW2 nominal roll.

Why the hell would you call a place Southern Cross?

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Catty mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
PNB, if you've researched properly, you'd know they weren't called Quakers, they were called Slaves. (long, and true, story). Did you know we are all banned for life from ever going to that parish church again? Gee, I thought our singing was rather nice!

Can anyone recommend a good jam for next Sunday? Raspberry has too many pips.

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triksta ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Townsville has to be up there with terrible/ ill thought out names doesn't it?

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Quokka mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Triksta it alerts you to what to expect from the populace and as such can count as Due Warning.

PNB...you may have heard of our Riverina but have you heard of Brewarinna?

Its out the back of Burke.

I've dug out my camel trader's maps. I could go on, and on, and on.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
I can understand why people would name a place Southern Cross, because when you see the Southern Cross for the first time, you understand now why you came that way.

There is a also a Orion, Wisconsin and Cassiopeia, Kentucky. I have long suspected that those founding cities and towns were astronomic enthusiasts.

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Quokka ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
When all you can see is stars I guess it makes sense.

We have Longreach and Birdsville. the latter has camel races.

And then there's Agnes Waters.

And over in Western Australia we have Bullabulling.

No bull.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
One word: Mullumbimbi

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
I had family there. It ends in a 'y' FYI.

And its not far from Woodenbong.

Also Federal, Bangalow and Clunes, and Goonengerry.

Murwillumbah is about an hour's drive north.

Very pretty, PNB, you'd like it.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
I knew it ends in a "y." I was testing you.

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Brian is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Stuff this thread drift - I wanna know what left brain,'Outta the box', creative thinking stuff he's going to be doing with a buncha fella's on Valentines Day. It better not be IED's in a bunch of roses nor . . . .nor code breaking all those lovey dovey missives in the paper . . .

Where's Havock? What's his input?

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Paul Nicholas Boylan is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Okay, that's not true. I had no idea how to spell it. I just met a girl from there in Dover back in the early 80's and I never forgot it.

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Quokka mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
She lied, she was probably from Tumbulgum and didn't think you could pronounce it.

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Madam Morgana would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
Catty, I recommend fancy European preserves... the all fruit ones in the fancy jars. Not as much sugar as jam, glide on nicely, and a sophisticated tang so you won't tire of licking them off as easily. Blueberry is divine.

Unless, of course you WANTED something very gooey... in which case, golden syrup. But be careful - too much heat and friction on syrup and you might accidentally toffee yourselves.

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Quokka mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Or do it, for that matter.

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Madam Morgana swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
Lol, Quokka. The Valium suits you.

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Sweet Jane Says is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
I've no interest in Australian or Muslim affairs. The questions are suggestions for Birmingham. Wikipedia wasn't their source or inspiration. Everyone knows our allies are broke and understaffed, and anyone with a bit of geology knowledge knows what's under Australia. I just needed names from newspapers.

J.

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
I love affairs.

That's what Valentine's Day is all about.

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Sweet Jane Says is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Yeah, Peanut Butter, I live 9 miles from a major component of a dirty bomb, and I do worry about Zionist terrorists obtaining the remnants of nuclear weaponry. It would be so easy to attack the Palestinians with a dirty bomb smuggled through one of the Zionist land-grabs.

I've lived in the Marshall Islands, New Mexico, and in the shadow of Kerr McGee. Four members of my Mom's family are Nuclear inspectors for the NRC. If I wanted, I could take a shovel and obtain material for a dirty bomb by morning, but it's snowing; and terrorism isn't one of my personal hobbies.

J.

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Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
Booger collecting does keep one busy.

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Catty would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
SJS, if you have no interest in Australian affairs, why the hell do you keep spraying all over our blogs? You could do something useful, like, I don't know, um, pissing off, maybe?

As at the eating of Sir Robin's Minstrels, there would be Much Rejoicing.

Maybe we could eat SJS? How do you cook a troll?

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Sweet Jane Says ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
I knew a lot of people that worked for Kerr McGee, and many of them are as dead as Karen Silkwood - cancer - and one melted.

J.

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
OK..I'm gunna have it OUT with this fkn jugger fkn fkn author right H$Ere!.

iF I SAY TO YOU, i AM IN TOWN next SUNDAY, AND I SAY THIS...today!, IT MEANS next, AS IN, not this fkn sunday THATS COMING AT THE END OF this FKN week, BUT THE sunday after.

iF i WANTED TO LET YOU KNOW I WAS IN TOWN...sUNDAY THIS WEEK, IT WOULD BE, THIS COMING SUNDAY, nNOT, I REAPEAT...NOT NEXT FKN BLOOODY WELL, I LIVE IN FKN QLD and we do all sorts of fkn shit backarse fucking wards NEXT FICKING SUNDAY!.....OK..Correct..I stand here..KNOWIng full well, under the judgement of the lord Christ all fucking mighty and trhat as long as my fkn arse points to the ground, I live in the nest fkn state of Australia Victoria..THAT I'm FUCKING WELL REIGJHT!.

And..Lets just make this abundantly fucking clear for all....the first fucker that sides with BIMINGHUM..GET FKN CAPPED!

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Sweet Jane Says swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
You can't monitor the entire coastline, and you can't guard every thorium deposit. Some are as easy to get as rocks on the side of a river.

http://www.ga.gov.au/image_cache/GA11547.gif

J.

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
If i say tio you, as you are now going to grab this round of DRINSK, I'll get the NEXT round, thats not...THIS FKN ROUND..ITS THE ONE AFTER..Correct..ha!..Ha!..YEP..I thought so..Listen to hav..some people have had too much fkn sunlight i reckon

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HAVOCK swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
must admit..that really doesnt sound like SJS..or is she ...er...IT..on new meds?

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
Its the fumes, Hav.

She's been licking her own genitals again.

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HAVOCK asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka..with a bit of LUCK..the FUR Ball will NOT DISLODGE!

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HAVOCK mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka..If I said to you on FRIDAY, next sunday we will have dinner..wouldn't that mean, not the one coming, but the one after?

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
I think you'd need to factor in 'Am I an author who works at home, mixes scotch with psychadelic pain killers and thinks that Sunday is last Tuesday, or maybe it was Friday. Where's my day planner, Dog? Wow. Look. gumby is on TV. la la la.'

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Catty asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka, that sounds more like SJS than JB.

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Quokka mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
Right.

Then in that case she's had too much Ponstan.

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Scott reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
You are all mad fkn mad!

I'm the only sane person on this thread. Isn't that right mr Giant Purple Squid?

Btw Birmingham I want my powered armour! With railguns!

We could use some of SJS's uranium as a power source, increased survivability is a way of avoiding the fact that we have a smaller military than anybody else. We need something to spend all our money we are getting from the Chinese.

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Naut mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
H - No wonder these Northerners can't organise anything.

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Abigail reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
hvk- here's one to drive you mad. What about if he'd said "I'll see you Saturday week"??

According to some people that means a fortnight, to others , not this Sunday but the following.

But I think he meant to say "I'll be flying this Sunday coming".

In my universe ,JB would most definitely say that :p

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Mr Enormo Lurking Spider mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Mr Giant Purple Squid. You have returned. Ah, I see you have brought me a Scott for dinner. Excellent....

I trust you enjoyed Mr Birmingham's fine collection of tentacle pr0n? The blooper reel was superb, was it not?....

Shall you be resuming your position as Nowhere Bob's companion? If so, I shall take my leave. I believe Quokka has taken up valium and could use a new friend....

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
you ain't seen nothing.

Wait till I start on the piss.

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HAVOCK ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Exactly Naut..totally fkn useless....

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joe has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
what a depressingly content-free thread this is.... will have another beer and attempt some "out of the green box" thinking for the trolls to feed on.

....and for the easily-diverted: Puckapunyal, when spoken, is a little too easy to be mistaken for "fuck a spaniel".

And I would not be surprised if somewhere in this wide brown land is a happy little community called Bringabongalong. I imagine they talk a bit slowly there....

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Bender Rodrigues Bender mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Yeah well you can keep your Burger get-together. I'm going to start my own get-together. With blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the blackjack.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Mr Enormo Lurking Spider, put that human down! You don't know where it's been!

Besides that particular type is toxic!

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John Birmingham mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Wee Jasper.

via

Run o' Waters Creek.

I'll come back to the rail guns later.

Next Sunday, perhaps. Which remains next Sunday until Wednesday morning, hump day, when it becomes, this Sunday.

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Catty swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
Scott, we ALL know where Quokka has been. That's why we love her.

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Catty has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
No, JB, I think you will find that Valentines Day is the day when all the humping is going to happen.

Aw, somebody had to say it.

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Abigail asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Scott, yes, we are all crazy who have found each other. Noone else will speak to any of us which is why we live here in our sheltered workshop , a benevolent institution established by the John Birmingham Foundation.

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donna mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
I've always thought Burpengary was a funny one...and of course the good old Wanneroo which someone always puts a T at the end of LOL

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Scott reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
John, I am aware of the problems with rail guns. Arcing and if memory serves heat dissipation. Once the scientists and engineers develop superconductors which can handle the load along with a suitable power source it will become the 21st c militaries best new shiny toy.

The US navy is researching it for ships, due to power requirements it is unlikely to become an infantry portable weapon which is why I advocate an armoured combat suit approach.

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Scott would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
Catty, love it!

Abigail, touche!

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
If you knew where I'd been you'd all be wearing biohazard suits and laughing out the other side of your nostrils.

Well, that's how I cope anyway.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka, we love you and that is what counts.

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HAVOCK ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Scott, doesn't mean we are NOT allowed to have EVIL thoughts but!

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Barnesm would have you know...

Posted February 8, 2010
Thanks PNB but it big bob's ancestor who drove the water cart, mines the one descended from Simpson's offsider.

Hey as long as the get together is after the_weapon finishes his Archery and its not too late (he has district swim team at 6AM monday mornings) then we can make it on Sunday (and Havoc I admire your rude but correct admonishment of the difference between next sunday and this sunday.

Anyhow as long as I can bring the_weapon I am okay for Sunday.

As to thinking outside the box for the army exersise I'd go with 10 words

"When hell is full the dead shall walk the earth".

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Abigail puts forth...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka, I always kit up in my biohazard wear before entering the communal dining room. Troll measures...

Donna- Burpengary? They seriously didn't think that one through.

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 8, 2010
You're right.

Its much more a Fartengary kind of place.

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donna has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
Seeing as you're mucking in with the defence forces, you should check this out, an interesting read, to say the least...

http://www.defense.gov/pubs/pdfs/China_Military_Power_Report_2009.pdf

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donna ducks in to say...

Posted February 8, 2010
Burpengary, I always thought that was where all the cucumbers were grown, groan!!

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donna asserts...

Posted February 8, 2010
Quokka, did you know that all the quokkas at Rotto eat cigarette butts? They have a very nasty habit, poor things, ugh! Well, thats my best useless bit of info for the day....

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NBlob has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
If one can construct a coherant light device (a frickin Laser) that can deliver lots of energetic goodness to a small spot.

What could a coherent sound projector do?

The Australian Army earned high praise for how it handled the civillian population of East Timor. They also got big props for their work in various peace keeping roles, where locals were suspscious of the "invading forces" of other nations, the diggers made a major point of engaging with the locals and earnt much respect as a result.

How has this reputation / approach worked in the Northern Territory intervention. How would they go in a for instance Zed outbreak in Melbourne? You can't dehumanise "The Enemy" if they are identical to you.

Australia has (I believe) a unique force called NorForce. Could that model be applied in offshore context? How / why is it significantly different to the militias that have caused so many problems around the world? I suspect careful design in three C's but would be interested to know more.

My favourite obscure Australian place name is just north and east of Kilcoy in SE Qld - Mary Smokes Creek, the community is naturally enough accessed via Mary Smokes Creek Road.

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HAVOCK has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
BARNES..Cheers..he's a big boy!...lol

Yeah. I'm under the impression JB, is flat as a shit carters hat on Sunday..well..ANYWAYS...its a pretty big squeeze for me even. Given in Super sevens we start drininking by 10AM..on Sunday and are pissed at midday after the last round of games..I'm betting I couldnt get there..even if JB was paying with abes tenner. Seems like April is the go..No sport for me then so all will be easy.

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
NBOB..Norforce..very light unit. Surveillance and recon mainly. remote operation, they can do raids etc..but they are derived from the local op..so as to have the edge so to speak as well. Good unit...

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Catty mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
I sometimes wonder if they make Southpark in Kilkenny.

Probably not.

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Catty reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
I knew a guy who persisted in referring to Toowoomba as "Woomba Woomba". And of course, Wagga Wagga was Two-wogga.

I know some very odd people.

Barnesm, Sartre said that hell was other people. So if the dead will walk the earth when hell is full, will feeding the world will bring about the Zombiepocalypse? Damn! I knew that Geldoff fellow was odd; he's the antichrist, isn't he?

Oh dear. Obscure o'clock. This is what happens when I don't get my 3pm nanna nap.

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Chaz has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
There seems to be a lot of faff going on in this thread...

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HAVOCK mumbles...

Posted February 8, 2010
Chaz..this threat is all over the joint like a mad womens shit..its fkn nutty

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NBlob mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Not as big a GBob, but big enuff. 189cm & currently (first time in years) sub 90 kilos. Still obese by the Dr's chart but what would they know?

Yeah H, but every other instance of training and arming part time soldiers has gone tits up in an epic fashion. The NorForce boys & girls seem to do their thing with a quiet professionalism.

My question is what is the difference?

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Lobes has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
I have a race sunday morning at cerebrus, singles ping pong tournament in the arvo then rooftop party at St Kilda fest but will have iPhone on me so tweet if something goes down and I'll be there. This isnt Qld.

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HAVOCK has opinions thus...

Posted February 8, 2010
NBOB.. predominantly..they are reservists..part timers doing something they love doing..and thats the key. Look at any reserve unit the Infantry Qualed / Based and you will find a similar thing..others..well, its there, they are still all volunteers too.. A lot of people discount the levels of professionalism in the Reservists..yeah some are ordinary..others... exceptionally fkn proficient

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HAVOCK reckons...

Posted February 8, 2010
LOBES...lol

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Murphy mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
I suspect the Australian Defense establishment doesn't have this problem yet but I think an excellent exercise for present day soldiers in the US Army would be to see if they could still operate without the benefit of computers and high technology.

In other words, dial the tech level back to 1900 in terms of commo, nav, and command-control. Leave them with everything else and give them a threat to deal with that is used to operating without that technology.

Somehow I suspect that the Australians are a bit more sensible about the tech they chose to use on the battlefield whereas the Americans tend to see it as a cure all for every problem.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Paul Nicholas Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
That is a fantastic idea. But would the purpose of the exercise be to just operate or win, and if win is the encounter against an equally technologically impaired opponent?

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Murphy mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
PNB, I'd want to see if a 19 year old could operate at all without a computer.

What I am seeing in my classrooms, where the rule is pen, paper, take notes, no tech allowed, is that the students just sit there if they are below the age of 25. Or they text as if they are being covert about it (they aren't, I can see them, I do nothing about it).

I wonder what would happen if you put a compass and a map in the hands of many soldiers today. Even in my time Land Nav gave troops fits (umm, oddly enough I never had trouble with it). I suspect what you'd find is that they have grown used to their blueforce trackers, their GPS and everything else. They'd have to relearn how to use the old method (I would, it has been that long). While they are relearning, I suspect they'd get their heads kicked in.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
Yes. I would love to watch such an exercise take place.

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Greybeard asserts...

Posted February 9, 2010
How about operating post-EMP? That's a technology that exists and would cause some of the effects above, knocking out computers, comms and even vehicles. I see there's a portable one now that can fry a car engine and presumably much more. I wonder if a low tech force like the Taliban could fry an allied base with an EMP device, then attack? Thank heavens we haven't gone too far with the Star Wars kit yet. Check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HAL_5 - isn't he a little short for a storm trooper?

Quokka - I have rellies near Mullumbimby. And we pass Woodenbong and Old Koreelah on the way down. I read about an Oz tourist who was picked up by the cops in the US for wearing a t-shirt that said "I'm from Kununurra". They thought it meant something obscene.

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Barnesm mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
Murphy

The do with out scenario is a bottla of an idea. I hope Birmo runs with it.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 9, 2010
Bastards.

I think I've been spam trapped.

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Quokka mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
Twice.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan reckons...

Posted February 9, 2010
No, Quokka. You are not being spam trapped. It is something else.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 9, 2010
I just wanted to point out that JB is only in those buttless chaps because the possum skin lap lap is at the dry cleaners.

Well, that and he needs them and that feathered headdress for the floor show.

Gather round, girls.

The man is a STAR.

All join in now.... 'In the NAVY....'

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HAVOCK swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
Barnes / Murph. I shot an idea along similar lines to JB a week or so ago. How long does it take to MAKE a TANk or Rifle or so forth..jets are the same. So in a high intensity conflict with sorta equal opponents, how long will HIGH TECH gear be available and how long before we would have to start making lower tech at a faster rate for replacement...???

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Catty swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
I think they've worked out you're a woman, Quokka. The bounders.

Maybe Birmo should suggest a "no women" scenario to his soldier boys. Just let them try and win a war without women building their planes, baking their Anzac bikkies, and telling them (again) what their reggie size is. This last one is very important, as men go through a lot of undies on the battle field. It's understandable - having a grenade go off right behind my earhole would scare the crap out of me, too. But why they can't just wash the crap off the pants instead of piffing them is beyond me. Oh, that's right. There are no women on the battle field to do their washing for them.

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Quokka mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
I did try to alert them that Lobes hung the Manly Men Only sign so its a bit bent...and its attracting interest from the new Manly Mens Sportsman's Bar that's just opened up next door.

But nada.

Once they decide to deny me access, there's no getting past those FKN spam bouncers.

I might go queue in the post office. Which is the next best fun you can have after dealing with the NT security staff.

I shall return with chips, and nurofen.

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Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
Quoks, good try with 'In the Navy', but The Village People were straight, as it transpires. However, you can't go wrong, (psst,as in, it's a sure bet) with 'Relax' - make a great theme song for the blog on a couple of fronts.

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Quokka would have you know...

Posted February 9, 2010
And the most played xmas carol of all time (white xmas) was written by a Jew.

Its still a gay anthem, Abi.

Now. You're blocking my view of the traffic cop. Woor! Wouldja check out the size of those man boobs...

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Murphy ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
Havock, yeah, the come as you are war. That was what Fulda Gap was supposed to be. I wonder if Australia will find herself in that sort of conflict anytime soon? Her technological rivals are all nominally allies with the exception of China.

As a side note, my thoughts haven't fully formed on this but has anyone noticed the proliferation of Helicopter Carrier type vessels in the Asia-Pacific Region?

South Korea is fielding two such ships.

Japan is fielding two with plans for a larger third vessel.

India is planning on having three aircraft carriers.

Australia is working on two Helicopter Carriers with some arguing for a third converted to F-35B capable.

China wants a carrier.

Thing I can't figure out is why the need for this capability? The US Navy hasn't gone that far down the tubes yet. Nor can I figure out if I should be worried about this development.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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HAVOCK would have you know...

Posted February 9, 2010
Murph..India worries the living fkn hell outta me and like you mention...Helo carriers are popping up all over the joint.

I'm gunna draw a long bow...but a mini clash is on the cards at some point..baby carriers against each other and given ranges of VTOL A/C they can launch..its going to be a knife fight rather quickly i suspect.

The time line to make NEW weapons, will, if the conflict is sufficiently large enough, consume the equipment much much faster than it can be made. like you say with " Come as yopu ", in that case it was logistics to ship the heavy eqpmnt.

But something sustained over a longer peiod, will pose significant issues, its one reason why i think we should be retaining our current leopard tanks and intergrating them into the Cav.

I noticed also, with the new FOXTEL Docco, on the Cav ( Canadian ) being followed for training pre deployment to the ME, that they have integrated the leopards into the CAV units..thats fkn punch for a pure CAV unit..unlike the US units which have the own troops of MBT's.

Its also one reason I seen the expansion of the Subs..it takes a disproportionate amount of effort to find and prosecute a sub than the assets actual value..and the neighbors around here are not exactly top of the line on ASW. They wield a far larger impact capability than a lot of other assets.

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Sweet Jane Says ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
Lobes isn't the weak link. He has known Birmingham for a few years and has socialized in person with Birmingham and others listed to the left. You'll find Lobes always surrounded by handsome young men (except Birmingham's crew) and handsome young women. Unless you have money, are very well traveled, have an exceptional education and a beautiful, healthy body, your taunts are meaningless to him.

I taunt him because I don't care about any of that, and I know he can handle Southern teasing. In other words, he's a few social rungs above you but will never say it. I'll say it because - what the hell - I'm Southern and Lobes is okay.

J.

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Sweet Jane Says mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
One of Canada major military commanders has been busted for murder. I think he was - navy. He molested and killed two women in Ontario.

J.

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Scott has opinions thus...

Posted February 9, 2010
Havock, now if only we can get our subs operational!

It's been a ratfuck from the start!

Start by firing most of the wankers in procurement, and I mean firing as in out on the range.

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joe mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
If the ADF doesn't already train troops in dynamic problem solving, in effectively changing plans mid-stride to adapt to a changeable battlefield.....

Please KICK THEIR ARSES for us all.

The problem with luxuries is you get used to them.

Top-order military tech changes the game-space greatly, but it can also fall off its perch.

GPS is a great example - how many satellites would need to be zapped/cooked/exploded/de-orbited from the constellation before its utility is compromised? Even just to the point of a few hour's window-of-opportunity when things are still in contention?

Plenty of states have the satellite-kill ability, and that is only what is public-domain.

So if they are not already doing it, politely ask them to START RIGHT NOW.

Then kick their arses.

Suggestion: decide on the day what they miss out on, possibly with a (loaded?) dice.

Maybe make them do without something kind of scary... like eyesight or hearing (laser blinders and sonic weaponry, anyone?).

Asymmetric warfare (for certain) and (possible) overmatched full-scale continental defence seem to be what they need capability for, in that order.

So dealing with the Afghanistans and East Timors of tomorrow will be almost a certainty, but without a credible ability to defend (at least in the short term) against a larger, richer, possibly higher-tech opponent.... well, who ya gonna call? And don't just automatically say "America" - a future scenario could easily see her power/influence reduced to the point they would be unable to help much, and it is dangerous to rely too heavily on anyone else.

As for out-of-the-green box, I'm having trouble with that because I don't really know what's in the box in the first place (other than what I have gained from conversations with Those Who Have Served - which mostly amounts to anecdotes of barracks-hazing and the curious medical effects of certain ration-pack components. Oh, and a shit-ton of laid back bigotry...)

I guess my contribution would be to get serious about the ramifications of high-tech-for-the-masses and soon-to-come game changers.

low-order conflict means a real engagement on the information and propaganda fronts (well, OK the latter seems pretty advanced as is... but mind-control has a hidden disadvantage in that the minds it produces are not exactly top-notch thinkers).

One of the new issues that came with instant widespread information flow - teh intarwebz - is that of the shoot-the-messenger:

These days, the MESSAGE is often the delivery system and payload in one. I am not saying censor/threaten/bomb Al-Jazeera because they published Osama Bomb-Laden's most recent batch of FUD (though credit where it's due - what better way to make the so-called-right hate the so-called-left than conflating global warming with the opposition to militant religious fundamentalism. Divide and conquer, and all that jazz.) - the solution there is to sow your own seeds better. The medium has changed but its still propaganda.

A clash of ideologies is a more even playing field than many people would like to think. To win such a struggle, you need to get the other side to start seeing things the way you do. The dehumanising aspect makes it easier to shoot someone, but much harder to form a real working relationship or sense of common humanity with those you want to opt-out of the fight or help you win one. It would seem (propaganda?) that compared to some of our brothers in arms, Australian soldiers do seem able to do this a little better than most - let's improve on this.

Hearts and Minds instead of Bodies in Bags.

With regard to informational-warfare (the hacking and cracking side) a good rule of thumb would seem to be NEVER CONNECT ANYTHING YOU CARE ABOUT, EVER.

Stories about intrusions into the databases of major military contractors are truly face-palm moments of idiocy... I mean... WTF???

At some point, shooting the messenger (if only with a taser) may be a necessity - a "cyber attack" on critical infrastructure, detected in progress would need to be stopped, cold, as the clear-and-present-danger it is. If this means FacepalmBook gets taken down for a day or so because an attack was being routed through it - well so be it.

I guess a lot of this faff doesn't really apply to the diggers, but some of it could - here's a question: can anyone tell me what proportion of our camouflaged nation-builders over on the subcontinent can actually speak Dari or Pashto? I know the locals over there are getting into cricket (and doing really well - they recently beat Ireland, can't wait until they make it up a level and play against the Paki's!) so hopefully they can have a few informal overs with the locals, even if the after game beers are a no-no.

Oh and railguns? BAH! HUMBUG! just another bigger gun, whoop de doo.

Although the possibility of mach-20+ over-the-horizon bombardment is kind of scary.

BTW extremely-high-flux superconductors simply DO NOT EXIST yet - and they may not even be possible, considering the high strength inductive/magnetic field generated by so much electrons moving degrades and destroys the fundamental superconductivity effect itself. There is more to learn in this field, so I do not discount the possibility (one of DARPA's black projects may have cracked this), but it isn't anywhere near the operational state of, say a MQ-9 drone.

C-beams and KillBots.... that stuff is real and getting more so.

Has the ADF come up with answers for ultra-cheap surveillance drones with off-the-shelf imagers (getting cheaper and better every day) - I mean ones that don't rely on a Rapier air defence system or an umbrella of AWACs/f-18s?

How about mobile-phone remote IED detonation? I know there's some work already done there with the jammers and detectors and detonators and whatnot - do our boys get some of them? Those guys tooling around in their chop-top landrovers (yeh yeh I know - SASR, not regulars) sure have some Nuts, but they aren't exactly driving MRAPs (not that you can fit more than one of those in a C-130J anyway).

We could probably learn a bit from the Poms and the Seppos with their equipment-we-need-NOW problems, but from what I have seen we can step up if we need to (anyone remember that high-speed troop catamaran that suddenly appeared in time for East Timor? And just as suddenly got decommissioned?) - we need this agility and can afford (by dint of small size) to be MUCH better at it than our major allies.

AAAAAAAAAAH! even my own brand of waffle is too much to stomach now, have some unrelated Burger-Fodder:

Amazon's Kindle bestseller list (lots of actual classics, traditional media blockbusters, and more than a few bootstrapping freelancers):

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=node%3D154606011&field-keywords=&x=18&y=20

AND

How much the occasional troll could be making if they went for it properly:

http://blogs.crikey.com.au/contentmakers/2010/02/08/what-are-freelancers-paid-the-complete-data-so-far/

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Abigail asserts...

Posted February 9, 2010
SJS:- ROF, you -guessed-it- LMAO.

"I heard those trashy poor people and those Great Gatsby throwbacks on the net, and Robert Redford dewlls among us: it must be so".

You sound very young, girl.

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Quokka puts forth...

Posted February 9, 2010
You might have to start with a minister, Scott, one that's long gone and swilling cocktails.

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Scott would have you know...

Posted February 9, 2010
Quokka, can I! Pleeease!

Seriously though we have had several defence ministers who have been too passive not to Mention incompetent.

For all the money spent we only have one sub ready for operations. Piss poor efort!

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HAVOCK asserts...

Posted February 9, 2010
Scott: Gummit , especially defense, that has a (PM) Project management requirement have been fkn piss poor. Those boats...NOW are good boats and were we building a similar design again, they SHOULD be able to do so relatively easily.

Problem is, the spec for the new boats...is WAAAAAY fkn out there. Largest Non Nuke boats ever built they will be. scaling up only cuts the mustard so far. The new tech integration well, if they go for COTS gear that has or is utilised in the US or UK fleets it will make life a lot easier.

It will be ugly..especially given we HATE, thats other and not me, hate Nuke boats. I would be heading for the new Virginia class units or successors at that point flat out..or the poms.

BUT..Deisel elect have significant advantages..no doubt about it. I have said it before..I would split the 12-17 boats 50/50 but those types.

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joe swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
Scott: yeh the Collins' teething issues are worrisome - especially seeing as they are pretty much teenagers now and should have ditched the milkteeth long ago and be onto junk food and perving on anything that breaths...

Not just the procurement wankers, also include crap/poorly supervised subcontractors. LOL... are they SUB-SubContractors? and if THEIR contractors aren't up to scratch.... ho ho ho.... then they would be SUB-standard-Sub-Sub-SUB-Contractors!!

Still, it is definitely NOT a reason to cease our efforts at domestic production of key warfighting platforms.

Havock: The replacement of equipment lost through wartime attrition (read: blown to smithereens) is a very valid point and will become more so:

When the modern armed forces start serious frontline use of drones/robots, training replacements for dead pilots will be much less of an issue than replacing the platforms themselves. Assuming similar tech/abilities it would quickly boil down to who can make/deploy these killtoys faster. AND, while not wanting to scaremonger, we all know where most of the planet's manufacturing base is these days. Only solution I can see is robot-factories (a job-losing electoral DEATHWISH) of sufficient capacity and survivability to move the bottleneck further back along the use cycle - to be an issue of raw materials.

There's a reason rare-earth metals are making the news, and it isn't just business monopolies.

As for their neighbours, together (but opposing) they are not so big a problem - one cannot move too far without the other having some issues.

It is in everyone else's strategic interests to have the two most populous nations of similar military strength and focused on each other.

If that changes somehow, well that's an entirely different matter. I'm pretty sure India will get somewhere with their indigenous thorium reactors (they have HEAPS of that, no need for our yellowcake), and just about anything the Chinese want that we have (other than yellowcake) we seem happy to sell them anyway (quality move BTW, to snap up decades-long supply contracts for gas and coal BEFORE any carbon-intensity-tariffs or whatever are formalised).

BTW JB(off topic again), though it may have been mentioned in the text of Leviathan, could you remind me who came up with that idea about Power and Violence (that V is the expression of a LACK of P) - I still find it rather intriguing.... and maybe not entirely off topic after all.

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joe swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
MMMMmmmmMMMMM... nothing like fresh Waffle with a dash of Faff sauce to tempt the spam-trap.

>:(

Meh it was an obese post anyway

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted February 9, 2010
Joe, I agree about domestic production of platforms and munitions, relying on third parties for essential equipment is at best short sighted.

Imagine, a US president 2020 e.g needing Chinese or Indian money to prop up an ailing economy.

In the Indian Ocean a clash develops, pressure could be put on the president to withhold/delay vital equipment.

This is how Israel was contained in the 70s, America threatened to close the supply lines.

A more important question is how long can the US subsidize everyone elses security?

In the years to come the US administration will be faced with cutting back the military or social security. Which will be the first to go do you think?

Ot I know but these are the questions countries like Australia need to ask themselves. I take no pleasure in the US decline, but no country can maintaine the US's debt without something giving.

The Europeans are going to get one hell of a shock when the US is no longer around to protect them. Soft power only works when someone is standing behind you with a big stick.

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Guru Bob has opinions thus...

Posted February 9, 2010
So what is happening for dinner in Melbourne? Have you chosen a venue? Unfortunatley I can't make - three work commitment nights in a row, plus moving house has meant that I need to spend some serious time working on the home front.

Are you still here on Monday morning? Brekkie may be doable?

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joe has opinions thus...

Posted February 9, 2010
Scott:

I am probably misjudging the national character of America.....

but I'm pretty sure it would be welfare that goes first.

They were never real keen on the idea in the first place, but maybe a generational change (or at least more engaged "progressive" voters) away from the McCarthyist hangover could lead to it going the other way.

"Obama could win the next election if he declared war on Iran" - O.M.F.G.

And to the waning of the Pax Americana.....

I think the You-rope-Ian's know this is coming, and the French and German armed forces at least seem to be doing something about it. Probably wouldn't be enough to stop Russia if it was serious, but to avoid a fight you simply need to make it not worth their while as opposed to being tougher.

Which is about all a country the size of Australia can hope for if we are talking about potential fights with the next superpowers. In that regard, keeping them addicted to our mining products is actually some insurance, as long as we keep an eye on the stockpiling - if you guys aren't actually using it to make our consumerist toys maybe we should sell it to someone else.... problem is: Who?

To soft Power and Big Sticks: It is not the Hitting of Things with Big Sticks that backs up Soft Power so much as the PERCEPTION that Big Sticks Could Start Hitting. Of course for this to be believed the occasional 3rd world country needs an externally-applied regime change, but it's easy to make a case that a string of low-magnitude conflicts Elsewhere is a helluva lot cheaper than WW3.

'Cos if the Nukes start flying in WW3, World War 4 will be fought with rocks and pointy sticks.

Just so you know its Business we Mean.

The Politics of Fear works at many levels.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted February 9, 2010
Joe, doubt it entitlement is well entrenched in the western world, the whole world for that matter just look at how some third world countries react when it is suggested that the gravey train can not go on for ever and it might be time for some competent leadership.

As for Europe increasing it’s military capacity, only around the edges.

Just look at what is happening in Greece, massive debt someone has to pay and when the government wants to cut back on expenditure the usual suspects come out of the woodwork for a temper tantrum. I speak of course of the public sector unions and the uni students who have nothing better to do than smash other peoples property. Last time around the Germans were handed the bill but it looks like the Chancellor is having none of it.

We hear a lot about deficits but they are not the problem in the short to medium term it is long term national debt which will cause headaches.

European country debts range from 80 to 120% of GDP. If they don’t get there shit together they are looking at more than defence issues.

I doubt that Russia will be a problem, they are in a lot of trouble themselves, most of what we hear is bluster. Look to internal strife, millions of unassimilated people from the third world being told that the welfare cheque is ending.

The cracks are already appearing. Remember how ineffectual the European response was to the break up of Yugoslavia it took the US to do anything. Negative population growth plus unassimilated folks with shall we say tribal customs equals a lot of grief. Rather than set piece battles I can see a lot of civil unrest coupled with urban war style clashes. Throw in some pissing contests between emerging powers and we will find ourselves living in interesting times.

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Scott mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
Crap, that was longer than I thought sorry Birmingham.

But my internal armchair expert got away from me, one of these days I'll have to take it outside and shoot it.

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NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted February 9, 2010
I try hard to keep in mind that Hanrahan said "We'll all be roont" years ago and there have been millenialists and sooth sayers saying soothly "The end is nigh" for thousands of years. 'Twould seem every generation throws up a couple who believe that things can't get any worse and therefore the end of days must be at hand.

That said.

1 Being prepared for Zed costs little but time & thought.

2 Not being prepared for Zed will end in tears. Briefly, then some shambling & brain eating.

So. While I may disagree on root causes, it would appear that Mr Scott and I agree on some points.

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Naut reckons...

Posted February 9, 2010
But Jane, I am handsome too. It says so on the left and my Mum tells me it's true!

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Scott mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
NowhereBob, not sure whether my analysis is accurate just saying based on history Europe is not looking healthy. You are right though preparation doesn't hurt any number of things could go wrong alien spacebats take away our tech, asteroid bombardment or just the crazies decide to play with megaton firecrackers. Bit worried about the shambling and brain eating of which you speak.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
Zombies Mr. Scott. Zombies.

Or should I say Dr Von Scott? *

Brigadier Barnes of the ZPS has taught us to consider the shambling & brain eating undead as a catch-all generic phrase that encompasses all the many & varied ways the wheels fall off our pretty western democracy. If one makes plans based on a Zombie outbreak, then you probably wont be underprepared, if on the other hand you expect to call mumy on the cell phone then perhaps you may want to think a little more, or end up another Fkn brain eating shambler that I will have to deal with.

You sugest Alien Space Bats, crazy nuke bingo &/or hot rock impact. I could add another half dozen and some who make a study of such things could probably add another 2 dozen. From microbes to megatonnes the chances of something cataclysmic happening are approaching statistical unity. Without sufficient information to describe the likelihood of one culture ending event compared to another we just use the phrase The Zompocolypse.

If you have considered any or all of the following then you are "with" the program.

Never less than half a tank of fuel in your vehicle.

Bug out bag packed.

Ingrediants for Improv weapons.

Defence protocols for home or location X.

Basic field first aid in vehicle & bugout bag, serious med kit at home or location X.

Alt. routes to location X

Rations for X people for Y days.

Water supply for Y days.

What are critical lootings? & When would you approach them.

.

* Rocky Horror Picture Show Referrence.

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joe mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
Ahhhhh, Hanrahan....

Reminds me of Dennis Leary's Irish Drinking Song for some reason:

"we Drink and we Die and continue to Drink"

Sounds very Zed to me....

Scott, I know we are waaaay off topic, but I can't help but say "HUZZAH!" to those points about non-assimilation and entitlement, even though we probably don't agree on the extent or details.

I am still optimistic that things will not degenerate to the sectarian urban warfare as depicted in JB's Without Warning, but I do think it fair that coming to live in a new country ought to imply that you are OK with subscribing their Rules and Social Conventions - if not why should we put up with you, again? Social disharmony was never part of the deal.

On the causes of this I perceive there are not really any Good Guys, only degrees of complicity.

As for the students and unions - they should respect the right to protest and express dissent; not abusing this right by breaking stuff and bringing their cause into disrepute.

I used to take part in public nonviolent protests - until I realised how frequently they were being hijacked by rabid fringe groups who thought it was a cool thing to do to throw nail-spiked potatoes at the police trying to keep the peace.

Didn't change my view on the issues, just made me want to avoid associating with juvenile arseholes trying to get on TV.

That said, changes to how some countries deal with public protests (first cab off the rank for me would be the UK) seem knowingly designed to elicit such stupid mob behaviour and bring their (possibly quite valid) issues under a cloud of extremist violent images in the media. This is frightening to me.

State-sponsored psychologists came up with this I am sure, and they are obviously a lot smarter in this field than the majority of individuals wanting to express their dissatisfaction, let alone whatever mental-ability the average pissed-off mob has. People interested in this should look up "kettling".

I am a supporter of a _certain_ degree of social welfare - just not the effectively free money that people get used to to such an extent it feels like a right.

I would much rather most of the dole (what we call state welfare for the unemployed here) was given in food/rent/utility vouchers, with a Work For The Dole program that doesn't just teach people how to Paint Rocks - traineeships and stuff like that to get them functioning in society again and provide some of those Skills there is always such a Shortage of...

This is what comes of giving a man a Fish, instead of giving him a hand-line and teaching him HOW to Catch Fish Himself...

Welfare will only ever be a band-aid solution (that does have some real, albeit temporary, advantages to society in terms of less desperation-induced crime) but addressing the longer-term underlying issues of education, disenfranchisement (ew.. long word... yukky), and self-respect seems to always end up in the "too hard" basket.

PS: I love when beggars (they are actually quite rare here) try to get money from me.

I will give them a cigarette (that's a service to the community with some of these people) but if pressed I tell them (as politely as I am sober) to wait for their dole money, and spend it wisely, like everyone else in their position ought to. Boy does that piss some of them off! (lucky me has only had to physically defend myself against a riled-up panhandler once - and as you might expect from someone wasted enough to attack a stranger they are asking help from, they really weren't much of a threat)

Oh, and I ONLY give tips for truly extra-ordinary service.

Hmmmm...... might be about time to replay some of those hippy love-in MP3s... and finish off the booze.

"cheers"

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joe mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
Give me a billion dollars and a cozy lab in, say, North Korea and I could make Zed a reality you Would Not Like.

Sci-Fi I know.... but based on KNOWN FACTS - it could be done......

But I am a Good Guy so you better up the offer before "could" becomes "will".

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HAVOCK reckons...

Posted February 9, 2010
People really need to look on the bright side of equations.

OK..If WW3 starts..its gunna be ..well BIG, but the up side is that WARS help promote extensive R & D like on scales we never seem to achieve in peace time. These applications or discoveries then filter through into the main stream society.

So after a big stoush, some culling of sorts we will have all these shinny new gadgets and hey..maybe even FTL as well.. and off we go.

just a thought ya know

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Abigail mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
Hvk, may I ask, what is "FTL" ?

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Greybeard puts forth...

Posted February 9, 2010
FTL = Faster Than Light. Only possible if you have a warped mind. Nyuk nyuk nyuk.

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Scott swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
Joe, I agree a hand up not a handout, the ease of welfare in Europe is a draw card, not to say that there aren't genuine refugees or hard workers among them but when I read about people being attacked on the street for not wearing the fullbodied sack or poloticians being put on trial for speaking out Geert Wilders for example, all in the name of national harmony of course, I wonder what the endgame will be.

Wouldn't it be better to explain that freedom means just that and if it isn't to your liking than leave.

Developed countries didn't just happen they require a certain amount of freedom, property rights and most important of all personal safety. If Europe doesn't wake up soon they may end up in a situation similar to that described in Without Warning. Having said this I am an optimist the future can be bright, just hope it isn't to bright as in big fkn city busting flash.

NowhereBob, have considered all that.

Funny story a couple of years ago the power whent off, as is our want after 30 minutes or so if it hasn't come back on we fired up the generator. The kid next door wined that we were lucky. No we said just prepared and thought ahead. Too many people take our social amenities for granted press a button and you have light or warmth turn a tap and you have clean drinking water. A complex system which could fall apart with frightening speed. Personally I think my and my families survival is too important to leave to a government which may have it's hands full with something else. Assuming it still functions. You don't even need to be a survivalist just have a simple go to hell plan.

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Greybeard mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
Slightly OT (?) but maybe Birmo could get a bit of discussion going on the JSF/F-35? $16B earmarked for what's looking more and more like vapourware. Years behind schedule, failed every milestone, costs rising faster than my blood pressure. The seppos may scrap the damn things totally. If they don't, the Sukhois being bought by everyone else in the region will fly circles around them. How about a scenario where the AJ's are left with no air cover? How would we cope with that? I notice India is planning to buy more Su-50 stealth fighters than the Russians!

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The very well travelled, well educated, beautiful , whatever else on the list, Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted February 9, 2010
Greybeard! I didn't know you came here. cool. Thanks(ftl)

Scott- I started planning a survival strategy when I was nine, just for fun and I have added little bits ever since. Yes, we do take so much for granted which turns on a dime and it's going to be our undoing one day.

Water- plastic in the sun to catch the condensation, if desperate. If they'd hurry up and advance the methane -to - gas sites that'd be very helpful. Insane population is going to be the biggest problem in this scenario- don't you say?

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Scott would have you know...

Posted February 9, 2010
Greybeard, this project has been altered so many times that I doubt whether it will fulfill the role Australia had planned for it.

The f111 is ment to be retired this year and it looks like the f35 is going to be delayed until 2013, how long until we get ours, the yanks will want the first line of production. 2014/16 maybe?

What are we going to fill the air capacity gap with? Once again this comes down to defence ministers who are not with it!

Please nobody talk to me about the superhornets, please.

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Scott asserts...

Posted February 9, 2010
Abigail, it is a reality that most people won't be ready for disaster, a lot of people will pull together but if a disaster is widespread even worse world wide than people will panick.

As long as people think that help is on the way they will sit still and for the most part remain civilised. Once the idea gets around that help isn't, won't, can't come than the gloves come off. Cities were in historical times deathtraps.

Too many people in one place poor sanitation contaminated water supplies and no ready food source all leeds to a war of all against all.

A smart thing to do would have a exit stratagey and leave before the insanity begins.

Note, I'm sure I'm traveling a road you guys have already discussed.

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted February 9, 2010
Scott I had that particular epiphany when in Edinborough.

X million people.

Food supplies for what, maybe 2 weeks.

Big cities shall be Very Bad Places to be when it turns to sh!t. I'm not convinced it shall, but as you say; a small risk with a big stake (my family) is not something I'll passively leave to The Authorities.

Ah Father GreyBeard it is too long since you graced us with your presence & your wisdom acquired across the ages.

Those Shukois are impressive beasties, even without fourth gen stealth capacities they deliver, and what's more they can deliver very shortly while we are waiting for our new shinys to arrive.

I'm sure our chaps & lasses up at Tindle will give them something to think twice about, but...

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The very well travelled, well educated, beautiful , whatever else on the list, Abigail mutters...

Posted February 9, 2010
OMFG, JB, you'll love this. You too Havsy, Greybeard, NowhereBob, Quok, Jenny, Catty, Medway, Scott, GC,DocYobbo, Damian,Nautilus, Mayhem...(if you haven't already seen it)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hR2nso47lm4

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The very well travelled, well educated, beautiful , whatever else on the list, Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted February 9, 2010
...sorry, PNB, Mr. Frellman- mon dieu!

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The very well travelled, well educated, beautiful , whatever else on the list, Abigail would have you know...

Posted February 9, 2010
ooh, just as the scenario is geting really hotted up , I'm sleepy. Hope it's still on tomorrow , 'night.

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Scott puts forth...

Posted February 10, 2010
NowhereBob, you are right small likelyhood but the penalties for not being ready are too horible to contimplate.

The higher the population density the nastier it will be, and the faster the collapse. At what point will the psychological breaking point for the general population arrive?

A point not raised in Birmingham's WW was that America and Canada are major food producers. Most if not all of African countries are heavily dependent on the US for food aid. Looking forwards to the next book.

Late need sleep.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan puts forth...

Posted February 10, 2010
I wondered the same thing, Scott re: food supply and poor nations that import both food and fuel.

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Matthew K reckons...

Posted February 10, 2010
Couldn't post this at the old blunty so I'll pop it here, chap seems jolly sound on the subject of tea.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eELH0ivexKA

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Murphy mutters...

Posted February 10, 2010
Scott, I believe the RAAF will be using F/A-18 Super Hornets, which are a capable aircraft.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 10, 2010
JB is there ANY chance that the NT will ever fix the blog so it's like it used to be?

Or have they given up even pretending to care?

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joe swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 10, 2010
NoWhereBob: please, what is meant by the term "approaching statistical unity"?

It sound pretty sexy, that's for sure...

In the way that "Infinite Improbability Drive" sounds sexy!

Preparations cost a lot less than people think, and can be dual-use:

Food: canned and dried goods can also be good value due to their shelf life (stoopid Woolies fresh produce displayed ready-to-rot, with good-looking but poor-keeping varieties) and $ per Kg/KJ (especially in the generic brands - how much nutritional difference is there between a premium tin of baked beans and one that is half the price? Piss-all). The only extra effort I need to maintain several week's food supply on-site is a regular "stock rotation" system that keeps the going-out-of-date stuff at the front for first use.

Longer term I guess I would have to rely on my gardening and hunting skills, but I am sure those would come back quickly if I had the motivation.

Water: rainwater tanks have just sooooo many advantages to those with the option - one of life's most essential ingredients, several tonnes of it, under your direct control is not to be sneered at during water restrictions, heatwaves, and zombie incursions (ya gotta wash up after a big night out with the chainsaw!). There are many bush-survival skills that could come in handy too (like the plastic/vegetation/condensation trick).

Squeezing the "water" out of a hapless ground-frog wouldn't be my first choice though.

Shelter: you don't even need to own a place to earmark it for a bolt-hole. When I was a kid, indulging in my ownpost-apocalyptic dreaming, I scouted out several abandoned (or would be if society disintegrated and noone showed for work) public works sites with much potential. One of them was even structurally similar to a medieval fort - "Zombies?! Boil up the oil and man the murder-holes!"

Defences: as the Burgers will probably already know from their Z researches.... The shambling brain-eaters are hardly the only thing to worry about. Internal strife and competing survivalists are the cause of more over-run survivor enclaves than zombies are! Part of the narrative prerogative of course but instructional with regards to feral humans (not Havock's use of the term).

So passive defences in the bolt-hole (doors that stay shut and solid with repeated zombie-bashing, windows they cannot climb through etc) backed up with active force(shotguns, chainsaws, improvised explodey goodness) would sooner or later become a priority.

So the usual advice of "canned goods and shotguns" stays at the top of my first-to-be-looted list.

Also on the list are:

Antibiotics and other lifesaving medicines (we can experiment on the zombies with cocktails of liberated pharmacy stock!)

Communications (CB radio, anyone?) and support for them (solar recharger and every spare rechargable battery you can find)

Fuel - especially important if you need to bug out again, or make friendly campfires out of approaching hordes

Tools - such as needed to fix the generators/utes/crossbows.

BOOZE - something will be needed to keep morale up after the portable media devices stop working, and a bit of Dutch Courage never hurt when facing down a Zombie Horde.

Longer term I would probably try to find:

agricultural necessities like seeds and fertilisers

textbooks and manuals containing useful information (to avoid a trip back to my current residence's home library)

Livestock - probably wild rabbits or if they could be found, chickens - both have very good biomass to protein conversion rates and don't have to eat into your own supplies. They breed fast too. Vegetarians will be blamed for the outbreak, in my village...

Oh and of course, nubile Bunnys to help rebuild the human race with. (health and intelligence standards apply)

Fun and completely off-topic, burgers at their best.

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Sweet Jane Says is gonna tell you...

Posted February 10, 2010
antibiotic = honey + garlic + fenugreek

J.

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Guru Bob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 10, 2010
I wonder what this says about our home-grown defence industry development - does it mean that in the event of hostilities with China our troops would go into battle naked?

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/australian-soldiers-to-wear-uniforms-made-from-material-made-in-china/story-e6frf7jo-1225828503575

Very much a "THIS IS SPARTA" aproach though....

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HAVOCK ducks in to say...

Posted February 10, 2010
Scott:

Dont get me started on whether we should keep the F111's, I say we should. As Murph Points out, the Super Hornet is a quite capable aircraft..in the enviro it was designed for.

However, as a replacement for the f111, it falls well fkn short, can it mix with a true fifth gen fighter...NO, will it do as a replacement for the F111 and Existing Charlie models of F18's we have...not really.

But you need to look at the threat..its not really there at the moment, however, if it materialised whilst they were in service, the we have a deep strike capability gap...a fucking rather large one i might add.

Doctrine has always been to start the attrition off shore and the 111's play a key...KEY fkn role in that. with them retired, until we have ALCM's of sub jobs, we are fkd. Even then, they lack targeting data..so somebody has to get close. They are fkn expensive and whats more..how would you conduct long range Air to ground delivery of ordnance..not with cruise missiles unless you have a fk load of cash in the bank. IRON BOMBS..smart PIGS..JSOW, JDAMS.

The superhornet is bigger than its predecessor, has greater range...but thats fkn it.

I hate, hate, hate the fact we have bought these fkn things, but, with the Pigs going out the door they are possibly the best fit. BEST thing we can do...GET the WEASEL versions of the F18G.

All this assumes we get the single engine fkn f35 before..say...2015, which IMHO, i think will not happen and a fkn truck load of cash will have been flushed down the fkn dunny.

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Guru Bob mumbles...

Posted February 10, 2010
By the way the spam rap seemed to eat an earlier enquiry by mine about is there actually a get together in Melbourne this weekend?

I think that as we are now on Wednesday that should be the correct grammer for both FKN HVK and JB?

Anyway - doubtful that I could make it but after birthday dinner last night - highly recommend the Tasmanian t-bone at the Station Hotel...

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 10, 2010
Lacks potency, SJS.

Inject some toad venom. That'll do it.

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joe asserts...

Posted February 10, 2010
SJS: yes that is an effective remedy - but only for topical infections.

Useless against something in deeper tissues or the bloodstream. A festering dog bite for instance (let alone a Zombie bite!).

One thing about internet Trolls: you cannot cook them with FLAMES - they live off that!

Maybe some kind of smoked jerky though.... mmm yummy

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joe would have you know...

Posted February 10, 2010
About those jets - how many months/years of capability gap (near term now) are an acceptable risk?

I mean if we lack deep-strike capacity for only a few years, and maintain reasonable levels of either transparency or espionage, surely it would take long enough for a potential adversary to prep an invasion/strike force that we would have enough warning to do something about it (like lease some hardware or find a way to strap some bigger sea-launched stuff to the subs)?

Deep strike certainly has a place in a defensive doctrine - "don't think you can hit me without suffering some pain yourself" - but the tools to do that may have to change, drastically.

To get anything like the range (nevermind the speed) of our ancient Pigs out of what we are supposedly buying next would require stupid amounts of (vulnerable and mission critical) midair refuelling capacity.

Personally I see the f-35, even the f-22 to a degree, being stop-gap measures before properly semi-autonomous UACV platforms are out there.

It would be more akin to riding a horse by remote than driving a car - only when something spooks your steed, it sends a pair of missiles back in response instead of just trying to throw you and bolt.

"stealth" is a tad overrated anyway - they can still get shot down by an annoyed local on a hilltop with an AK, and IIRC our own Jindalee installation was able to detect those speccy stealth bombers back when they were doing test flights over the Indian ocean - something about the air-wake.

Cheaper, smaller, faster, more maneuverable, bigger range, and with emerging semi-auto AI piloting, quicker response time also. The Machines Are Coming. Killbots are the future, unfortunately (I would prefer representative physical sport-combat to decide things, Sumo-style, but I wont get that wish).

Still the manufacture/supply issue of course.

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joe mutters...

Posted February 10, 2010
I suppose I had better include ingredients for "home-made compression-flux devices" on that looting list......

(EMP bombs FTW)

hm... might be able to "MacGyver" something out of tubing, wire, a shotgun shell and a fat capacitor.....

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The very well travelled, well educated, beautiful , whatever else on the list, Abigail asserts...

Posted February 10, 2010
Murph- don't the RAAF already use the Fa/18 Super Hornets? I see them at air shows and just assumed....maybe not.

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HAVOCK asserts...

Posted February 10, 2010
Abi..early last year we took delivery of our First Block 2, EF Model F18 super hornets. We have 24 on order being delivered over this year and the next one. Assuming no fuck ups or other issues.

From memory, we managed to tap into the production line run in the US, as deliveries to the USN were ahead of schedule.

HAD we not been able to and went to the back of the list, I suspect it might have been more like 2013-14 and that would have fkd the whole retirement of the pigs issue.

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NBlob asserts...

Posted February 10, 2010
Joe. Statistical unity = A one in X probability repeated X or more times without the result.

EG a standard 6 sided dice (or die [singular] for the D&D freaks). Rolling a 6 has a one in 6 probability. On the 6th roll (if you havn't turned up a 6 yet) the chance of rolling a 6 is approaching staistical unity. Note that it does not mean it will happen, just that the probability is approaching 1 or unity. That is my understanding of the term, I may have it entirely wrong.

If we get a KT type asteroid impact once every 100000 years and havn't had one for more than that long, A super volcano once every 20000 years and havn't had one for more than that long, a pandemic every 100 years and we havn't .... The likelihood of one or more of these events occuring is pretty good.

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HAVOCK is gonna tell you...

Posted February 10, 2010
NBOB...if you were to subscribe to the statistical unity theory. Chaos however.......well...who knows!

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jp mutters...

Posted February 10, 2010
Twenty years from now there's no way we'll still be one of the biggest military spenders on the block, and one's modern military is only as good as how much cash you got comparative to your foes -- some developing mo fo's will have a lot more cash than us.

So, fortify Tasmania and fall back there. Or we could all move to Shebangabang. Breed with your cousin's cousins or with sheep -- the future is rosy, hey?

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NBlob asserts...

Posted February 10, 2010
PS from 15:51

I have a mate who is very keen on go fast Japanese road bikes. Track days and touring to Phillip Island GP for four days in the same pair of jeans kind of guy.

He also likes fang on public roads, has millions of war stories and has consumed several bikes. Given the frequency of motorcyclists meeting messy ends he once described himself as a "refugee from probability."

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joe reckons...

Posted February 10, 2010
Interesting Bob.. I might look into that a bit. From your description it sounds like an asymptotic line.

Before trying, I had a play with the spreadsheet to see if I could remember my edumacation.

Chance of a six being thrown on one roll is 16.7%.

The likelihood of at least one 6 coming up, after 6 rolls of a six-sided dice, (if we MUST put it in D&D terms... that would be 6d6) is approximately 66.5%.

Yes, that is *approaching* p=1.0 (100%)

But really its only about a 2/3 chance of getting it.

I was about to show my working, but then I got slack and decided someone else out there would explain it better so if you're interested here's a link on dice probability:

http://www.edcollins.com/backgammon/diceprob.htm

Turns out I derived it slightly differently but it simplifies to the same thing. Yay for the old neural net.

here's an amusing thought: someone wants you to bet on getting Heads on a flipped coin, but just before you decide how much you put on that outcome, a third party tells you the last 5 flips were ALL TAILS.

Personally I would assume someone was cheating.... But if everything was legit, the true probability of the SINGLE FLIP you are betting on would be 50%

Sure you are seemingly betting on 6 heads in a row, but you are already most of the way there.

Whether you think its legit or not, well that brings me neatly around to Bayesian Analysis and the Veracity of Media Reporting..... nah sod it, I'm going to crash early instead.

PS HAVOCK: I don't know you apart from your persona as typed here or at Blunty (and I would never have suspected cake frosting), but of all the theories, CHAOS theory does sound like a good fit.

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joe ducks in to say...

Posted February 10, 2010
NWB(20:26): that's pretty cool, I'm going to tell my biker friends that.

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Guru Bob puts forth...

Posted February 11, 2010
My suggestion would be for them to look at the Russian scenario where the armed forces are let unpaid for so long that they are effectively confined to barracks for years on end, having to contract themselves out privately and start selling off their weapons and ammo to the highest bidder.

Actually that may not be too far off the mark if this news story is anything to go by:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/02/10/2815518.htm?section=australia

The scenario is that the Australian economy has gone down the gurgler, defence budgets are tied up in expensive contracts for big ticket hardware (ships and fighter planes etc), there is no money for maintenance of high-tech gear, training budgets are shot to hell, recruitment is failing to get anyone to join up, there is nothing in the kitty to actually pay the troops with and no immediate threat. So how do you maintain effective forces and morale in taht environment?

Actually that sounds like it could be true in the next couple of years...

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Guru Bob mumbles...

Posted February 11, 2010
I forgot to mention the huge cost over-runs and delays on said big-ticket hardware...

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Respond to 'Prepping for Pucka.'

Not so lazy Sunday

Posted January 31, 2010 by John Birmingham
As always after a deadline, my office looks like a bunch of storm troopers had a barroom brawl with half a dozen Chechen war bands. So this morning I headed down to give it a clean out in preparation for the next round of deadlines. It didn't take too long. It never does when you just hold open a big garbage bag and sweep everything off the desk into it.

In tidying up I did have one stroke of luck. I found an unopened box which I had assumed was just reprints of Fellafel or one of the thrillers. Instead it turned out to be a small treasure trove of fantasy and sci-fi novels I'd ordered from Borderland Books in San Francisco, I think, almost exactly one year ago. It had been sitting there in the rubble and the rubbish that whole time. I think I might start with the Charlie Houston vampire noir novels first.

But not until I finish Steven King's Under the Dome, which I'm about three quarters through, and which I'm really loving. It's one of his big canvas projects, and possibly his best since The Stand. I'd find it hard to fault the book were I reviewing it. The characters are all brilliantly drawn, the pacing is perfect, and he's managed to pull off a trick that most genre writers find it all but impossible; embedding quite sophisticated political discourse deep under the cover of the surface narrative. He has a lot to say about politics, religion and ecology but he never preaches. Nor does he make the mistake of painting his villains and heroes in two dimensions with a limited palette. It gets JB's two thumbs up and a hearty recommendation for the next time you have a spare week to invest in a novel.

My next week is going to be invested in the rewrite of Leviathan. Sydney Theater Company have announced now that they'll be adapting it for their 2011 season, meaning I'd better get my arse into gear and get rolling on my update. That's partly what cleaning the office was about this morning, not just clearing work space on the desk, but clearing headspace so that I can shift from one project into the next without being held back by a lot of clutter and baggage.

I'm sort of looking forward to it, the change in pace. My first task is to go through the published papers of the early colonial governors extracting notes on the themes I'll be addressing in the new chapter, the city's aesthetic history. This will also be an interesting trial for the dictation software. I've been using it a lot to do columns and features, and it's proven itself more than useful in that area. This chapter, however, will run to at least 40 maybe 50,000 words, in effect, a standalone book. It's the first time I'll have tackled a project of that size from the get go using MacSpeech Dictate. I'll let you know how that works out.

The other thing I'll be trying is some writing software recommended by Hughesy. It's called Scrivener and I've got it on a 30 day free trial at the moment. She swears by it and I'm willing to give it a go on that basis, but I wanted to wait until I was at the start of a project. I won't use it for Leviathan, but I will see how it handles with the first draft of book 3 of the Wave trilogy.

127 Responses to ‘Not so lazy Sunday’

Abigail mumbles...

Posted January 31, 2010
Ah, JB, I'm going to have to my review my harsh feelings about Stephen King and give him a fair try.

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Bangar reckons...

Posted January 31, 2010
I'm looking forward to the re-issue/reworking of Leviathan an excellent piece of work.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted January 31, 2010
I went through a King stage but then he lost me, might be time to give him another go.

Btw JB you poor bastard you know that in about 2/3 weeks from now you will need something you threw out! Done that now I give everything a quick look and if it is over 1/2 years old it goes.

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miche would have you know...

Posted January 31, 2010
Scriverner is only for Mac users. For those of us who are using a PC, Scriverner recommends PageFour from

http://www.softwareforwriting.com/

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joe mumbles...

Posted January 31, 2010
Yay! moar leviathan!!

some days u happy me lots an lots...

The last version was FKNAWSM, despite the rambling, sometimes overfamiliar prose and the impression it was a 2nd draft essay before the linking paragraphs were done. I guess it was only a draft eh?

well, bought it and im buying the next one too - 50000 more words? mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. yum

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Orin mumbles...

Posted January 31, 2010
Watching the Barney between Amazon and McMillian is also entertainment this weekend.

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damian mutters...

Posted January 31, 2010
I've come across Scrivener before - not sure if it was after some discussion here or not. It DOES look good, actually. May try this 30 day trial myself, though I'm not so sure it's the impetus I need to get writing. Still not sure what that could be, really.

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Nocturnalist is gonna tell you...

Posted January 31, 2010
I've heard some excellent things about Scrivener from writer friends who use it. I'll be interested to hear how it interacts with the speech input.

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lostatlunch ducks in to say...

Posted January 31, 2010
what a great week.

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sibeen mumbles...

Posted January 31, 2010
Well I'm glad book 3 of the wave trilogy got a mention, even in passing. You know of course that us burgers will be baying for the third book approximately a week after the release of the second. Hounding you day and night, infesting your dreams with our lamentations, making inappropriate and completely off topic remarks over at blunty, badgering you mercilessly at burger get togehters; all in all making complete arses of ourselves.

Just a friendly heads up.

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PM Newton swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 31, 2010
OK - I'm sold. The Dome goes on my list. The reviews I've read had me intrigued and I'm a big fan of genre that refuses to stay in its box and instead pushes the envelope and goes undercover to do the political thang.

And STC doing Leviathan, now that's going to be a must-see.

Those early governors wrote some interesting stuff. King's 1801 order that the “natives” along the Georges River were "to be driven back from the settler's habitation by firing at them" is a nice reminder that Keith Windschuttle et al are full of the brown stuff.

Looking forward to the results of your road testing of Mac Dictate - there ought to be a comish in there for you on sales prompted.

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savo ducks in to say...

Posted January 31, 2010
Under the Dome is a rather excellent bit of writing Scott I'd highly recommend getting back into him with the Dome. The arm still playing up John or is the software that good?

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John Birmingham mutters...

Posted January 31, 2010
I'm still restricted to about 2hrs a day typing, which isn't enough. But having scaled the upper slopes of the learning curve, I've also become lightning fast with the software.

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NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted January 31, 2010
I'm suprised your desk gets buried in detritus, I thought you had Bunnies for that kind of thing.

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HAVOCK would have you know...

Posted January 31, 2010
I'm thinking shit stuck to the desk with the NUTs N Fkn Berries he eats N bob

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 31, 2010
JB, btw, that's brilliant news about STC adaptation- I meant to say that before. Are you excited?

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sparty reckons...

Posted February 1, 2010
I really liked under the dome, worked on all sorts of levels. Interestingly although its one of his longer books it actually reads like one of his shorter faster paced novellas or more like a return to his firestarter, deadzone type of pace. And he really thought through the dome concept- would be great to see all his working notes...

Abigail- read the long walk (stephen king writing under the pen name of Richard Bachman)- i promise you will NOT be wasting your time

http://www.amazon.com/Bachman-Books-Early-Novels-Stephen/dp/0451147367/ref=pd_rhf_shvl_1

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Sweet Jane Says ducks in to say...

Posted February 1, 2010
Somewhere between the Yukon and Aricibo:

http://www.santafe.com/articles/from-ghosts-to-mutilated-cattle-to-aliens-to-hums-the-land-of-enchantment-is-also-land-of-the-strange - Underground Bases and Tunnels, by Richard Saunder, Ph.D. (Adams Hall) - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hum

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Sweet Jane Says asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
The Schumann resonances (SR): The limited dimensions of the Earth cause this waveguide to act as a resonant cavity for electromagnetic waves in the ELF band. The cavity is naturally excited by electric currents in lightning.

And don't forget the oscillations of String Theory - that is - if you want a scientifically based reason behind it all.

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Sweet Jane Says would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
J.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
Okay, so here in Sunny California it is now Sunday, and my lazy day will be devoted to watching television and drinking alcohol until I fall asleep. Now THATS living - albeit not as productive as what John describes.

One more thought: all this talk about the third wave book is encouraging, but the discussion on the mechanics of Kolhammer's presidency resulted in my current rereading of Final Impact again reminding me again how wonderful the AoT series was and hoping agan that there will be more someday.

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simon bedak puts forth...

Posted February 1, 2010
great stuff

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted February 1, 2010
STC is an exciting development. Looking forward to the Leviathan update.

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Guru Bob mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
STC version of Leviathan - I suppose that means that you will be swilling champagne with Cate Blanchett and her cohorts sometime in the near future? NOICE!

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Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted February 1, 2010
Cate?

This is job for Bell Shakespeare.

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
Wondering who would be sufficiently fat & venal to play the role of Sydney?

Ol' Mooface Bert Newton ?

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NBlob mutters...

Posted February 1, 2010
That should be mooN face, but moo face works to I guess

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Therbs would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
NBob - Once again we get sniggering from the provinces about good ol' Sydney town. Get back to those floods and fires and protect my carbon offests from further damage before I set my Bondi cockroaches against you.

Now waiter, a large Bombay Sapphire and tonic if you don't mind and please remove that tree which is blocking my view of the water, there's a good lad.

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Chaz swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 1, 2010
Excellent news about Leviathan finally coming off the blocks.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted February 1, 2010
Yessir Mr. Therbs sir. At once sir.

Would you like a chocolate swirl ice cream with that?

Nyuk nyuk nyuk.

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Therbs asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
Ice cream? With G&T? Hmmmm, hadn't thought of that. An intriguing concept which requires further contemplation and research, but please leave the choccie coloured bits out of the gelato. That's a purely Coogee Bay afftectation developed for the ratsacker market and isn't well regarded north of Alison Road.

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Otto mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
possible spoiler alert....would be interested JB if you have the same view of the ending of The Dome....it just seemed to be rushed, or, oh so neatly tied up. Give or take a 'hero's' death or two. Maybe it was the time of the day I was reading it (very late, after being utterly engrossed for along period of time). I am sure your publisher wouldn't do the same to you.

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Albion Love Den (Blue Box) is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
I'm ready to wager than Brisbane Arts Theatre would do a crackin' version of Leviathon. Way more dick jokes than those bunch of toffs at STC.

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Cobargian would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
Leviathan the Musical? And does that mean you're rewriting history?

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
I envisaged it more as slapstick pantomime with gun battles and tossing of cream pies.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 1, 2010
And Faff. It needs a sprinkling of Faff.

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Timmo asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
'I’m ready to wager than Brisbane Arts Theatre would do a crackin’ version of Leviathon. Way more dick jokes than those bunch of toffs at STC.'

And given that us Qlders are apparently spending all NSW money, we may as well spend it on their stories...

...which of course, it takes a Qlder to write properly :)

Oooh, watershed moment folks - I just realised I identify as a Qlder in this scenario!

(I'll be blue as they come when State of Origin comes round though...)

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
There's nothing that the STC could do which wouldn't be aced by a Bedes/Girl Clumsy collaboration. But that probably goes without saying.

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
So is Bedes another resident thespian? sorry guys, *still sorting out names/context. Is Bedes in felafel as well? I wish I could see it!

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Abigail would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
John, this is quite an honour for you. They're a pretty major-league company .....famous and all that. Wow, really.

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Abigail reckons...

Posted February 1, 2010
GC, I wish you much success in theatre. You've got a vibrant presence here and I'm sure you're even more so on stage:)

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Greybeard is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
@NowhereBob, February 1, 2010 @ 10:03 am

"Wondering who would be sufficiently fat & venal to play the role of Sydney?"

Silly boy! (Smiles and waits for the phone to ring with an offer)

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
Miss Abigail, Bedes is our cattle barron who between emasculating boy calves adapted the original HDWAFIHH to script form.

Greybeard. My apologies memsahib. The foolishness of (relative) yoof.

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Therbs mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
Mr Bedak is also a key player in the exclusive club scene and if asked nicely will run a football tipping competition. Last year's included some delightful swearing in the weekly submissions from very enthusiastic participants.

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
I met Bedes at GC's play on Sat night and am happy to vouch for his character.

I expected him to look like Russell Brand, and told Mayhem as much.

He does not.

Which was really rather funny, however being a polite marsupial I resisted the temptation to laugh.

Bedes, on the other hand, spent about three minutes pointing at me and gurgling 'YOU'RE QUOKKA! YOU! YOU'RE QUOKKA!'

yeah, SO?

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 1, 2010
Maybe he thought that I'd look like Russell Brand too.

In hindsight, I should have asked.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
I am going to win the next footy tipping competition.

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
PNB, stick to cows.

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
how? glue? velcro? Duct / gaff tape?

Or is representing bovine litigants a key part of Professor Boylans practice?

I'm confused

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Paul Nicholas Boylan is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
Will someone tell them how I did in last year's contest - despite not knowing a fucking thing about footy?

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NBlob reckons...

Posted February 1, 2010
Oh and Aunty Q I empathise with your suprise.

It was a profoundly odd experience to discover, contrary to baseless asumptions, that Medway was a man.

Cue Jen "And what a man he is."

I am currently striving to excise the mental image of our portly patrician having parchment skin, ruby eyes and little canine fangs peeking out over his bottom lip.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted February 1, 2010
That's not true: even I knew that Collingwood is the BEST footy team evah!

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Paul Nicholas Boylan would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
Or is that St. Kilda? Hell, I have really have no idea...

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted February 1, 2010
Sibeen, did you catch Prof Windschuttle on the radio this afternoon? Aparrantly the "Stolen Generation" is a invention / conspiracy.

What a guy!

prof google can find it for you; ABC + radio national + counterpoint. Download & laugh along.

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
Nbob.

Go to youtube and search 'cow tipping' or 'how to tip cows'.

I'd post the link, but you know.

Information this century and all.

Failing that I am sure PNB can issue instructions thanks to his zany misspent youth.

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
Nowhere Bob- I do love a laugh at the expense of the feeble so I'll listen to Keith Windbag on Counterpoint, counterpointing Peter Reid's years and years of research and the primary sources.

A cattle desexer among us? this could be handy at some stage.

And PNB- you used an Australian accent ("evah") see, it's not difficult. Unless you're Meryl Streep.

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Chaz asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
Quokka, yes meeting the Squire is always an experience. usually expensive and alcoholic...

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Mayhem ducks in to say...

Posted February 1, 2010
Yaaay the FAFF is back. Mind you, it was a little disconcerting to have Mr Bedak suddenly realise and bellow "You're the FAFFERS" at us on saturday night! We admitted to being devotees of the almighty FAFF. No shame us!

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Bangar mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
Chaz, aren't the best meetings that way?

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 1, 2010
I try to pretend that Windscuttle doesn't exist.

La la la.

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damian mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
What's this Windshuttle thing? Something to do with navigation equipment that the sextant made obsolete in the 17th century?

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
Damien, try wikipedia for his full bio but basically he's a holocaust denier.

He also likes to sound off about other great 'hoaxes'.

I suspect that his real agenda is that he likes to create as much distress as possible for any vulnerable group that's been persecuted.

It gives the man a woody.

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damian is gonna tell you...

Posted February 1, 2010
More like a bolt on. A piersing. A "sorry if the sextant thing was a bit obscure", in truth.

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damian reckons...

Posted February 1, 2010
Actually, the Quadrant thing is a theme I find really interesting. Among other things, the sextant and chronometer enabled navigation accurate enough to circumnavigate the world safety and directly enabled Cook's expeditions, his detailed charts of the east coast and all the explorers and early administrators were widely read Enlightenment intellectuals who had very progressive social ideas for the day. Basing an intellectual circle around the quadrant is like rejecting the science, technology and ideas of democracy and equality of opportunity that arose through that age, stating a clear preference for the Old Ways. I find it ironic these people identify with flawed older technology, just as they identify with an obsolete, vicious and insular world view.

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Abigail puts forth...

Posted February 1, 2010
Damian, that's an interesting way of seeing it. Yes, quite right too.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted February 1, 2010
Phrenology and spirit writing are popular at their anual get togethers too D.

An even funner bunch of cats is the Center for Independent Studies, they Self Identify as a Free market, small government think tank. In reality they are a frontspiece for as close to a conspiracy as you are likely to get. Always good for a grab refuting the latest progressive policy. One bloke explained once that The Market had saved the whales. When Whale oil become commercially unviable alternatives were found.

While talking matters maritime. We wern't but ahem anyway.

In ye olde navigation days, they rather cleverly with the help of copius books of tables, a sextant, a chronograph, clear skies, a metric crapload of skill & a little good luck they could fix their position reasonably well.

What I find quite amazing is the relative accuracy of the charts created. If one overlays Cap'n Cooks original charts of the East Coast with modern Ubeaut satelite photograph based charts the error is tiny. In order of fractions of a percent. Quite extraordinary.

I had one old bloke explain that sailing @ 5 0r 6 knots for weeks on end gave one a very high sample rate, if one rejects the Way Out results, the finished product is really pretty good.

Where as we blast about at 20 knots.

While I'll pass on the scurvy, lashings, class warfare & most of the sodomy I think there would have been a certain something that we have lost in modern shipping.

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Mayhem has opinions thus...

Posted February 1, 2010
Nbob lol! Only Most of the sodomy? Been hangin around Greybeard too long?

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damian mumbles...

Posted February 1, 2010
Mayhem, what happens in the forecastle stays in the forecastle.

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Guy puts forth...

Posted February 1, 2010
JB - re: Leviathan - I've recently discovered that one of my ancestors was a man named William Dawes who was apparently a naval officer with the first fleet to Australia at the end of hte 18th century. An Australian friend in my office here in London tells me that she thinks there is a place in or near Sydney called Dawes Point, which is named after him. Do you happen to know if this is true?

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
It isn't true, Guy. Sorry. I was once assured I was related to President Grover Cleveland. That, too, was untrue.

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 2, 2010
ooooh Nbob;;;;;; (running legs, going off to find out about these guys ;;;;;;)

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
Damian - Ah...I get it.

Guy - yes.

We stay at a Hotel in Dawes Point when we slink off to Sydney.

If you google whereis.com and punch it in it should come up.

Not sure how well it works from London but it works fine from Brisbane...

Its a bunch of old wharves off to one side of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the grungy old warehouses on the docks been converted into hotels, restaurants and the home of the Bangarra Theatre Company. If you google that or 'Siebel Hotel' @ The Rocks, Sydney, you should get a few images off it.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 2, 2010
Guy, my spelling sux - www.sebelpierone.com.au

there's a history page with some old photos of Dawes Point and Walsh Bay.

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Barnesm mutters...

Posted February 2, 2010
I am calling 'Shenanigins' over at the Blunt Instrunment- have tried to type in the password a dozen times and it doesn't recognise it. Keeps suggesting the same password SLADER even if I reload password.

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sibeen is gonna tell you...

Posted February 2, 2010
I am calling ‘Shenanigins’ over at the Blunt Instrunment

*smug look*

It let me post over there the other day.

First time in about 6 bloody months, but it did let me post :)

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Barnesm asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
My security code DOES match you malisous piece of software

Here is what I wanted to post, will keep trying

I’ll confess I too jumped on the myschools website as soon as it was working. But I am the person it was built for, the aspirational (I hate the word but it's apt) middle class.

1st the Falcon academy that my son the_weapon attends. It past muster very well. Not surprised by the results as we did a lot of checking on statistics, NAPLAN, demographics, ENTER scores etc.. before we considered it.

And therein is my problem with the myschools website.

We moved the_weapon from the state school he attended because we were unhappy with the academic achievement. We also had problems many other aspects of the school but I’ll stick to the NAPLAN results. This concern was well founded when you compare the myschools results from that school, lots of pinks and reds, to the Falcon Academy's lots of light and dark greens (I wonder if they considered blue for the colour of above the median results but were too worried about blue blood considerations).

But there are still parents who have their kids at that same state school. Why? Because they can not afford to put them into a private school. Do they work as hard as I too? sure probably longer hours and crappier work, do they love their kids? of course, are they concerned about their children’s future? terrified I would think. But all the myschools website does for them it confirm their worse fears. Won't this just mean less reasourse for these schools as those that can leave?

If parents didn’t have the option to move their kids to other schools, would we allow any of these struggling schools to continue to do as badly as they do?

Cool to see how many $,000s more for the same scores. I am looking at you bigprivateposhschool.

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted February 2, 2010
Right.

I'm not even trying, today.

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Barnesm has opinions thus...

Posted February 2, 2010
Right, now its saying SPANMER is the password and it STILL says its wrong.

CRAPTASTIC

I hope my continual postings fill the spam trap it and overflows and drowns the deathstar.

also darryltj is back and in need of a good kicking and I CAN"T POST FRAK!

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Barnesm mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
"my pay to pay for the education of kids from drug and boozed out parents that make no effort whatsoever to educate/raise their own children" this is the sort of stuff that darryltj is saying and I have to let go unremarked

FRAK!!!!!

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Barnesm puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
OKAY

I am going to get up and get a cup off coffee and when I get back I expect the password problem to be resolved.

You hear me nationaltimes death star, there will be blood, it might be yours

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
If I was to compile a list of those I'd least like on my case with a hardon for revenge, Brig Barnes would be in the top 10.

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Quokka puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
you could count me as one of his minions Nbob but it sounds like a good day to go out to early movies and lunch with a friend.

FK the deathstar.

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Barnesm asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
Okay now the website is just taking the piss, my password is

'NERKED' and its not recognising it

funny NERKED describes exactly how I feel at the moment.

It also suxs that at least 11 comments have made it up, but not mine including Damiens

"Private schooling is for people for whom a modern secular education is offensive in some way, or who do not wish their offspring to rub shoulders with the children of the less privileged, lest this promote a dangerously egalitarian conception of humanity as a species"...

as someone who son is in Private school I say to him this nonsense with nobs on.

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Barnesm asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
My security code DOES MATCH you effing MUPPET! (sorry, came over all HAVSEY then)

I have tried to send an email but got a 'no response from the server' but six attempts latter eventually I was able to send an email.

Tried to find a phone number of fax but that was unsuccessfull after all how 20th century.

Am now attempting to arrange 200,000 Chinese to launch a dinial of service attack on the national times website by claiming it is a subsiduary of Google.

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Barnesm swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 2, 2010
Now I'v been DERKED.

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John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
I've put yours up using the back door.

Email me if you keep getting arse fucked like this.

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damian would have you know...

Posted February 2, 2010
Barnes, your nobby nonsense is my deliberate stirring. Apologies for sweeping you up in my generalisation.

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Lobes asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
What is the address of the NAPLAN website with the school rankings?

I want to see where my old school comes before I decide how offended I get.

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Barnesm reckons...

Posted February 2, 2010
Damian

No worries I figured you had tongue firmly planted in cheek, but it helped me give something to rant about not being able to comment on.

Mind you no excuse for darrylt

Thanks Birmo you are a prince among men.

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NBlob asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
Noblesse Oblige I believe Brig Barnes.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
There is a whole lot of nerking-off going on.

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Barnesm puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
Lobes you can get the NAPLAN stuff from the myschools website its the results the catagories are based on.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted February 2, 2010
Something weird is going on at Blunty. When I got there, it thanked me for my comment in advance of me posting anything. I bet some fuck-knuckling nerkoff is responsible.

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damian has opinions thus...

Posted February 2, 2010
Admit it Paul, you've bookmarked the "Thank you for commenting" message because you crave appreciation and your clients are insufficiently grateful. Be careful, comrade, as this road leads to handing out $50 notes in the street for the fleeting glimpse of joy in the recipient's eye.

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damian puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
NBob - so long as it's not Droit de Seigneur. Which is apparently a large hairy dog, or something.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted February 2, 2010
Actually, the women (and occasional man) who were subject to Droit d Seigneur traditionally referred to the Lord that insisted on that right as a large hairy dog.

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damian mutters...

Posted February 2, 2010
Ah, thank you for clearing up that point.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 2, 2010
I really didn't have a point.

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damian asserts...

Posted February 2, 2010
I often feel that way myself.

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Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted February 2, 2010
I can imagine circumstances where If I handed over $50 on street I expect to be receiving more than a fraking 'fleeting glimpse of joy in the recipient’s eye'.

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Abigail mutters...

Posted February 2, 2010
I can't see Blunty today and Ed. is my pet topic.

Normally it's posted here at CBG. Hmmm....

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damian puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
Abigail - see the "Blunty at NT" link up the top there. This link can be bookmarked...

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Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted February 2, 2010
Barnesm, have a kava tablet.

And then smack something.

You'll feel soooooooo much better.

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Abigail mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
D'oh, not sure they accepted my comment re security code

it did something weird when I tried to post it!

Here tis, for Blunty... (but this is NOT assuming it'll go there, just in case)

"I've taught in both systems and my child has been educated in both systems. Currently she is in a public high school and that is her choice.She likes her friends and loves not having to wear a uniform straight out of Picnic At Hanging Rock.

I think the private system does *some* things better, except they lack pluralism and they *Make* you, as a family, focus on money (because you'll always have to find the f****ing stuff) rather than the education itself. I have a problem with my daughter being taught by adults who are paid less per week than their students receive in pocket money per week (some of them anyway).

JB, I see this your way.

I definitely have a problem subsidising cleaning fees for swimming pools which can only be accessed under strict conditions anyway, and for state-of-the-art science labs if my own child has no future in science, because why does she need a science lab with polished boards and antique seating ? (so to speak) She needs good teachers.

Darryl, about the drug f**** parents, plenty of train wrecks send their kids to the local Grammar school , take my word for it. In fact, private school parents can be the worst bullies because they hold their school over a barrel constantly and demand the most ridiculous , unrealistic outcomes which no money in the world can fix because it's about their child's temperament, or indeed their *own* temperament.

Did you know there are presently private school parents refusing to pay their full fees if their child doesnt get the marks 'promised' ? True.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted February 2, 2010
Damian, Thankyou for making a big difference to an otherwise dire afternoon.

You provided a link to "What's Rangoon to you..." a few months ago. I downloaded it and stuck it in the Nokia. I had started it a few times, but hadn't finished it. This afternoon @ Nambour Hospital I had the chance to listen start to finish.

Thankyou thankyou and thankyou.

Danniken is still hung up on the jellyfish.

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damian mumbles...

Posted February 2, 2010
Bob - you're very welcome and I'm delighted to have been of service. I hope your dad is doing okay.

And my regards to Princess Dog.

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hughesy mutters...

Posted February 2, 2010
Hey JB - who's writing the adaptation? I'd like to get them up for Reality Bites fest this year to talk about adapting and dramatising non-fiction.

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Guy puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
Quokka - thanks for letting me have the link. One day I hope to see Sydney for myself and perhaps check out Dawes Point. However, my fav Aussie girl here in London tells me that I should forget Sydney and instead visit her home town of Townsville which is, if she is to be believed, a paradise on earth...

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Granger Coulee puts forth...

Posted February 2, 2010
Hey JB,

Look mate, I'm troubled by your reliance on flakey technology like all this blogging shit. I think that you should start writing nice things about old ladys and flowers rather than all that nasty stuff about men masturbating together with goats.

Fuck bloging. Go to the pub now. Yes Now. and talk to a real person and do a real thing like have a piss in a flowerbed under the nasty glare of brisbane traffice headlights.

Or get a nice haircut and a real job selling video recorders ;-)

Copya...Granger

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted February 2, 2010
Guy dont be mislead.

Townsville is like combining the stifling heat & humidity of living in a hot water system cabinet, with a searing tropical light that can & does little blind baby kittens.

Micologists (fungi freaks) reguard Townsville as some kind of Babylon, a mythical place where you can enjoy tinea between the fingers and all manner of interesting jock rots and thrushes while straight up fungi can sprout in your pants in under an hour.

What Townsville people call a Public Swimming Pool, others would call soup.

You've heard about all the whizzo lethal animals we have? They all (except F.W.Spiders) live in Townsville. The best bit of all is that over the summer mionths when immersion in salt water would offer some temporary release & relief from the lethal climate, Irikanji & Box Jelly fishes make that a life gambling endeavour. Recently we've found (after being here for >200 years)(we're either a little slow or distracted by other things trying to eat us) that the all but invisible irikanjki can be found up to 50K upstream in rivers & creeks.

Just in case you manage to score a aircon office (or front public bar) to evade the worst of the day time heat & humidity, Townsville has one last little trick. A massive heat sink at the end of town. Castle Rock bakes in the tropical sun all day then pumps that heat right back out as the evening progresses ensuring that on some nights the adjacent neighbourhood never dips below 35 degrees C. Ever tried to sleep in 30 deg + with a humidity of 70%? I thought only Dom Delouise could sweat lying still until I was in Townsville in December. There are stories of little kids dangerously dehydrating overnight while asleep.

In short Townsville is a fetid backwater cursed by location and plagued by climate, lethal fauna and interesting tropical diseases with one sole saving grace.

It ain't Charters Towers.

UN International Sh!thole of the year, 40 years running.

Respond to this comment

Guy mutters...

Posted February 2, 2010
Cheers Bob - your detailed descriptions of the surprisingly wide variety of fungal infections and poisonous beasties that await the unsuspecting tourist have convinced me that I should not include Townsville on my list of must-see destinations. I can't help but wonder what this Charters Towers place might be like?

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Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted February 2, 2010
Nbob- That's as nr. perfect a description of Townsville I've yet heard ;)

I thought somebody mentioned the US air force/army? left them Castle Hill. Gee, thanks for nothing guys.

Although I liked Townsville - weirdly, oddly nice. Great aquarium there.

When we were there it was "off season" for Irikandji, but lo! what did they find in the public baths (or perhaps it was the beach) one day after we left?

Also, when we were on Fitzroy Island , off Cairns, again, supposedly off season for box jelly fish, I quizzed the manager (because I was really fkn paranoid) and he said "well we can never say you *won't encounter one at any time of yr, because it's possible" I stuck to the pool. I mean, it's such a beautiful place- the water off Fitzroy was stunning to behold- but such a torture.

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Mayhem swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 2, 2010
Nbob, I read Guy's question earlier, and wasn't game to answer honestly, just in case his favourite Aussie girl over there is more than just a friend.

Frankly I think you were a little understated, but then you probably have no reason to know that the half of my family that DON'T live in Canberra or Melbourne or Brisbane, DO live in Townsville. Brings the tone down more than a peg I tells ya. Best thing my folks ever did was move us out of there when I was but a wee tacker.

Had to go back a couple of times for The Brat's basketball, but 2nd time I only stayed a day. Yeah expensive day trip, but beats staying overnight lol!

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Quokka ducks in to say...

Posted February 3, 2010
Guy, no wuzzas.

The Rocks is a nice place to stay, they have markets on the weekend and lots of kickass places to eat around there. Its also an easy walk to circular quay where you can get one of the ferries to anywhere worth going on the Sydney Harbour.

I spent most of 1985 in Townsville studying James Cook Uni.

I was pissed out of my mind on Tequila cocktails every weekend so don't remember much of it but Ditto to what Nbob said.

He forgot to add that its an incredibly racist town and its a good place to go if you want an STD.

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damian would have you know...

Posted February 3, 2010
Townsville is nice, really. But go there in *winter*, which occurs yearly on a Tuesday afternoon in August. Nearly anywhere on the Queensland coast between there and Brisbane can be nice, but avoid Airlie Beach where 70% of the population is made up of British or German backpackers at any given time. The NSW coast is nice too, but beware the towns whose economy is based around speeding fines, and make sure and watch the documentary The Cars that ate Paris carefully before driving anywhere south of the Tweed.

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NBlob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 3, 2010
Damian, You know about notifyable diseases. Health authorities require Drs diagnosing certain serious communicable diseases to give anon stats - eg Female 38 year old HIV.

Airlie Beach is, by an order of magnitude, the highest reporting region for STDs in Australia. Fed Health launched an investigation, we all sniggered and blamed dirty little Euro backpackers.

Problem was that backpackers don't waste $ on Drs. It was found to be hospitality industry workers. Waiters barmen & barristas. ugh.

Arranging a weekend @ Lennox Head as we speak & Hastings Point is my happy place.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted February 3, 2010
I too give a firm thumbs up for visiting the beaches along northern NSW.

Avoid during school holidays.

And don't sleep with the bar staff.

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damian is gonna tell you...

Posted February 3, 2010
I'm sure the dreadlocked backpackers ("Lutz! Nimm von uns ein Foto") make up a pretty stable and deep reservoir. Though obviously the hospitality workers of whom you speak must develop an immunity to the twinned fragrances of BO and patchouli. Maybe it's a prerequisite for the job?

Big thumbs up for Lennox Head, btw.

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Quokka asserts...

Posted February 3, 2010
ER...Guy, do edjumacate yourself about RIPS and how to recognize them before you go out for a paddle, though.

Personally I'd like to see that little video played on the plane trip over here, would save the surf life savers all across the country a shitload of effort in pulling tourists out of the FKN surf.

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Abigail reckons...

Posted February 3, 2010
I'm with you guys. I like the north coast of NSW a lot. Coffs Harbour is great. I mean, it's not stunning, but it's so friendly and relaxed that you do feel like you're having a real break from stressed co-workers and so on in the city. Subtle difference between a break and a holiday, I guess.

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Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted February 3, 2010
Damian- patchouli oil fragrance: the backpackers and massage places up there all cancel each other out. On returning from a month in Byron hinterland I had begun to believe the world was supposed to smell of patchouli oil. "No?" "No"

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damian mutters...

Posted February 3, 2010
Abi, it's my experience that patchouli oil combined with acrid, penetrating body odour is the characteristic smell of hippies, everywhere. So much so that the slightest hint of the latter will usually induce the perception of the former in my olfactory apparatus on its own.

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NBlob puts forth...

Posted February 3, 2010
Lennox is for a mates 40th camping break / baby farm / weekend away. Sigh, most of my friends started baby making late, so why do I, who sensibly got it out of the way in the very early 20s have to deal with the repucussions?

She Who Must Be Obeyed has expressed some reservation about driving for 4 hours to "Squat in the rain like FKN Hippies." So I'm looking around for accomodation options with a roof & a kettle. Professor Google isn't helping a lot. Do you have any tips hints or ideas?

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Quokka puts forth...

Posted February 3, 2010
Yes. Stay home.

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Quokka puts forth...

Posted February 3, 2010
Or pack the strop...

Respond to this comment

NBlob mutters...

Posted February 8, 2010
Silver Sands caravan park for the win.

weather FAIL.

Good time was had by all tho.

As an aside, is there an established protocol for when a friend's mum directly asks one to supply her with a certain green proscribed narcotic sustance? As her elderly neighbour has reccomended it for sleepless QLD summer nights.

A: "I don't know what you are talking about. I'm high on Jeebus"

B: "Ask your son."

C: "Who me? Why me?"

D: Roll up a slim little number and take her for a walk around the block.

Dog help me I went with option D.

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NBlob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 9, 2010
*crickets*

What line? oh, thaaat line. Back there, the one I seem to have stepped over.

Sorry 'bout that.

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Respond to 'Not so lazy Sunday'

One week. 24 000 words.

Posted January 20, 2010 by John Birmingham
That's what I just did. When I sent the redrafted manuscript off I was expecting to have a month to work thru my line edits and fix up the epic battle at the end of the book. The publishers wanted to punch on thru and give ourselves the option of a slightly earlier release I guess. So that timetable got crunched. An extra 24k of explodey goodness and two paragraphs of character development were needed. But I done it. It's gone away now.

When next I see this bastard it will be in galley proofs. Big, fat fucking glorious expanses of A3 paper.

Soon after that we can do that funny thing where I give you the Fedex tracking number and you can watch the finished, hard copy ms wind its way to the desks of my publishers for one last read thru.

Hats off to all who helped, which was most of you at one time or another, answering my desperate research queries.

A particular dip o' the propeller beanie to Murph who did yeoman service in the trenches when it counted and was still researching questions about airborne assaults into urban environments at half past really fucking late last night. And of course to my long suffering family. Those poor bastards.

What a fucking year.

Anyway. A few days rest for JB. I have a feature to do, but it's on a topic I love and will be something of a break. Kids back at school next week when Steve Jobs will also launch Apple's new tablet based on the data slate from WoC. My agents are still working out the details but I'm thinking a 3% cut from the retail price would be about right. Might have a proper day off to celebrate then.

78 Responses to ‘One week. 24 000 words.’

Al would have you know...

Posted January 20, 2010
Nice work!

'24k of explodey goodness and two paragraphs of character development'

I like that ratio!

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WalkingShaw mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Awesome -- so when are the revised release dates?

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Paul Nicholas Boylan puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
Coming here has removed any illusions I may have had about the romance of a writer's life. Incredibly hard work - the results of which I cannot wait to see. Hope you get some time off.

4% isn't an unreasonable figure.

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Mayhem mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Excellent news JB! Congratulations and well done.

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
I already congratulated you ,JB, but when I saw this I thought to myself that your kids must be very happy *for* you, to see you complete the cycle ; you know, it all gets noticed, kids don't miss a trick.They'll have some good and interesting memories of having grown up with a writer.

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donna mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Good one JB, how bloody marvelous it must feel to be done! I agree with PNB I no longer have any romantic illusions about a writers life, seemed a bit like a battle till the end to me!

When do you think it will be on the shelves for devouring by your adoring fans....??

Of course I will re-read the first one just to refresh...woo hoo cant wait, loved the first one, I'm sure the second is going to go off with a huge bang!

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Chaz puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
Yes JB take the kids for a day on the beach eating ice cream and fish and chips. Then back to work tomorrow for your next book.

Chop chop.

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girlclumsy puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
Congrats!

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Abe asserts...

Posted January 20, 2010
Nice work. I'm not even going to mention the $10.

What's the topic of the feature?

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Therbs ducks in to say...

Posted January 20, 2010
So it took two whole paragraphs to develop the frocked up FKN HAVOCK!!character?! I reckon those two pars could have been better spent rescuing some swing top bottles of Grolsch.

Congrats on getting it done. Sure you wanna use Fedex? Look what happened to the volleyball in Castaway. You want your manuscript being used as an imaginary friend by a marooned Fedex exec?

Kick back, have a beer. And don't scratch those scars on ya noggin.

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HAVOCK would have you know...

Posted January 20, 2010
Cheers..good job, but THATS about as far as I am willing to go on the back slappin, ot else you will be un fkn bearable.

Good to see you have realised my suggestions on more explodin shite was both SOUND and valid..I always told you i know better on all matters including BEEEEEER!.

Well somebody had to take an opposing stance, if for not other reason than it was AGAINST YOU.

PS..doc now knows co's he asked the Q.

NO..I have not tried grolsch..but will over the next couple of days

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Bangar mumbles...

Posted January 20, 2010
Congrats, sooner is better.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
Don't do it, Havock. Drinking Grolsch is a sign of physical weakness and questionable spirituality.

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HAVOCK is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
The better to know my enemies PNB...

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
Abe, you're too compassionate. This is exactly the right time to mention the $10; he's finished the m/s = he's coming into at least $10 soon. Hit the man up for those notes, Abe Frellman.

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NBlob mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Nice one skipper.

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Medway is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
Good work, mate.

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DrYobbo mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Well done. Gold star for you.

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Rhino puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
Great job JB ... can't imagine pumping out that volume of words ... coherently, at least.

Can't wait to see the final version!

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Brian is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
'Bout time. It was the whining that was getting on me tits.

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Chaz mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
On a sad note Bill McLaren has died. All stalwart rugby fans will morn his passing.

So there will be drinking in the streets of Selkirk tonight.

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Scott would have you know...

Posted January 20, 2010
Good to see boss. Won't mention that after all that hard work I'll read through it in about 2 days.

24 k of blood and distruction/2 paras of development, even better! You know the reward for a job well done? Now about the next book. . .

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Quokka would have you know...

Posted January 20, 2010
Well, I could congratulate you, or I could whine about wanting to know when Leviathan's going to be rereleased.

I choose door number two.

Back in your chair.

I am however interested in your scabs and their pathology.

Updates?

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Troy mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Long time reader, personal financier since 2.1 (5 copies of each book, for friends... not stalking!, first time blog ever). Well done! Why are you not able to write a book a week to sate me :)

Don't do what that bastard Clancy did and pull the pin on writing once he got me hooked!

Good on ya, i wish you well!

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Big Bad Al mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Onya JB. Looking forward to reading it.

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Madam Morgana puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
On ya, JB

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drej ducks in to say...

Posted January 20, 2010
Nice work JB. Will have a beer or two for you tonight.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan would have you know...

Posted January 20, 2010
Troy, let me be the first to welcome you. Your thoughts and comments are welcomed, so long as you avoid bad language - for example "fuck" and "asshole" are terms that are disfavored here, as well as "legubrious" although I really can't figure out why anyone would object to that. But a rule is a rule, so avoid it if you can.

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Abigail mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Troy, don't mind PNB, he's the American. He does of course mean you're not permitted to say arsehole , not "asshole".

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Brian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 20, 2010
PNB. You were warned about the 'L' word.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
Damn it, I was. Fuck.

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Greybeard puts forth...

Posted January 20, 2010
And it's "lugubrious" as in "N-Bob's face grew increasingly lugubrious as he contemplated Greybeard's brilliant repartee". Oh and congratulation Mr B - tonight I'll drink to your success. You won't be here, but you can be sure I'll be drinking.

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Barnesm is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
one week 24000 words

this IS Sparta

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miche swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 20, 2010
Well done JB. I am looking forward to reading it.

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lostatlunch ducks in to say...

Posted January 20, 2010
Death to all lawyers, unless they amuse me... PNB you continue to live... for now.

ok... when the tracking number is released I expect everyone to someone their spies, troops, bunnies and minions, to intercept the package... and then deliver it.

And and cheers Mr. B... nice work 24k is a major triumph, reminds me of a brief I received that was meant to put a client off, I just sent it back with a 500 word argument, asking if this was the readers digest condensed version, because they better have some real claims when we got to court and then quoted their freaking brief straight back to them, with corrected spelling in red ink.

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Bangar mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
Darkman that didn't work out so well last time.

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sparty is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
FEDEX tracking number

Important documents

Hungry readers

Some trained in black ops

Long time to release date

Lightly guarded Fedex truck

Did no one think of the consequences?

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Scott has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
Sparty, like your thinking.

I used to get the shits waiting for authors to write the next book.

Watching Birmo the last couple of months gives me a feeling of just how much work goes in to the book we hold at the end.

Now back to work JB we're watching you!

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Abe ducks in to say...

Posted January 20, 2010
Sparty has a point.

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Moko ducks in to say...

Posted January 20, 2010
*standing ovulation*

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NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted January 20, 2010
Touche o wrinkled one

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MickH mutters...

Posted January 20, 2010
So JB,

what's next?

something to do with web readers and the net? :p

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John Birmingham swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 20, 2010
Cheers all. Next is a 3000 word feature. Piece of piss. Then a few days off after the kids go back to school. Then, Quokka, about 6-7 weeks on the Leviathan rewrite before opening the file on Book 3.

Feel free to come up with some alliterative titles.

Also, I think Orin gets a free AA for choosing the name all the way back at jspace.

Pathology on the excisions. 3 BCCs.

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Bangar mumbles...

Posted January 20, 2010
Looking forward to the Leviathan rewrite ... please tell me that I'm not the only one who's read it. If so wait for the new one and read it. Great work.

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beeso reckons...

Posted January 20, 2010
Sweet work JB

better get my first book back and pre re read

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D-Ron84 has opinions thus...

Posted January 20, 2010
You weren't the only one to read it Banger, i loved it, and i can't wait for AA, nice work JB. How's Supposedly Safe sound?

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Murphy is gonna tell you...

Posted January 21, 2010
Thanks, Birmo.

Hopefully it serves.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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NataliatheRussianSpy mumbles...

Posted January 21, 2010
Pls ignore that appalling attempt at humour. No harm meant.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
Don't let it bother you, Natalie. No one here - other than Dr. Yobbo, Greybeard, Havock, Barnes, Bob, Bangar, Therbs, Darkman, Al, Chaz, Abe, Quokka, savo, the Rhino, Moko and Lobes - is all that funny. Even my finest spelling errors barely raise a chuckle.

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
Well Nat, I laughed. Forking marvelous idea.

JB that's some nasty holes. You have regular trips back to the skin doctor planned, I trust.

Bangar - I haven't read Leviathan yet. Tried to get it a year or two ago and was told it was out of print. I was most annoyed.

Which reminds me, JB, I made some enquiries of the NSW police archives not that long ago and they told me that the rap sheets regarding arrests for brothels during the years of WW2 had not survived the passage of time. I was almightily pissed off.

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Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
PNB you great lug. Who here would be rude enough to comment on a mispell or a typo?

I just assumed a profiterole fell on the 'e' and the 60 year old scotch prevented you from noticing.

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Quokka has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
Eh, Boss. The Hallowed Halls of Faff are about to go over a cybercliff.

So unless you want the Faffuggees to take shelter somewhere blokesy, I'd send in the renovators.

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Ben has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
Congrats JB. It must be a very good feeling to finally send off the book.

If you look at what mp3's did to the music industry surely the book publishers will be laying in some ground work on plans to combat file sharing. Are your publishers doing anything to combat the file sharing e-book threat?

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Abe puts forth...

Posted January 21, 2010
I'll sell you my copy Quokka. I'm guessing you already KNOW the price.

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HAVOCK mumbles...

Posted January 21, 2010
I'm already working on HOW i get my hands on a fkn copy before the fkn thing is released..NOT SURE HOW...but given lats times success...I gotta try again .

WHAT FEDEX plane was that again?

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
==JB hurriedly rushes in the Wormald escort===

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
Quokka - "hurriedly rushes" there's one for absolution. What providence you'd only just said "who would be so rude as to correct peeps errors?"

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Quokka swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
Hm. Let's see Abe, if I run that through price check I believe that comes to a grand total of:

A. $10 measly bucks

B. Eternal Damnation for a scurrilous lack of principles

How about I stick a few more pins in my JB voodoo doll (you choose, left eye or right? he really does hate those migraines) and I try the BCC e-lib catalogue?

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted January 21, 2010
Ahem.

There is what I gauge to be a CORPSE in the chocolate fountain - at least, there's a stump with a fishnet stocking and a stiletto heel sticking out - and the rest rooms, both sexes, are all out of what I shall delicately refer to as AMENITIES.

And there's a pair of stained Y-fronts size 42# hanging where the T-towel should be in the kitchenette. Would the owner kindly claim and remove them.

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NataliatheRussianSpy reckons...

Posted January 21, 2010
Thank you little hairy mammal and nutty one from Californ-I-A.

Now seriously...that's great to hear Birmo. Any chance you could churn out two a year for us now? Perhaps under a psuedonym? Hmmmm we should all think of one whilst considering a title for book three.

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
Sparty, Hav.

Once the Fed Ex con note no. is obtained its simply a question of ringing up and asking questions using some convincing trade talk. Need to have someone to cover the FedEx depot in Brisvegas and possibly Sydney. It will most likely be an overnight consignment so it will be in the depot by 7.00 p.m., probably earlier. The only hassle will be if Fedex use local couriers in Brisvegas suburbs to do the grunt work, then we have to susss out which ones and monitor the transfer depot.

Once its on its way to the depot we do a redirection of the consignment, copy the documents and direct it back on its way with its original shipping documentation but in a new FedEx box, looking as if its been unmolested. There's a whole heap of other stuff you need to do to get this to work but, well, we don't want to give anyone ideas now do we?

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lostatlunch would have you know...

Posted January 21, 2010
just saw a reference the head of the IMF has mentioned a Marshall plan to rescue Haiti....

Where is the Marshall Plan to rescue JB's empty USA, after WW & AA? does anyone want to revive the Union?

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MFZero mutters...

Posted January 21, 2010
Can't fkn wait JB, now the waiting game begins.

Consider me throwing my hat in the ring for Book 3 - Revolution Rising.

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Rhino has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
Havsy ... you do realize that of the 25,000 words written fully 80% of them dealt with the awesomeness of The Rhino.

I have it on good authority that the editors specifically asked that Birmo ramp up the FKN ORSUMNESS of my EXPLODEY GOODNESS scenes.

Not bragging, mind you. Just sayin' is all.

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Scott mutters...

Posted January 21, 2010
Rhino, have you seen the scene where your ch dies horabley sobbing and begging for his mummy?

Verry touching, especially when Jules and the sexy assassin team up for vengence!

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sparty reckons...

Posted January 21, 2010
Therbs - Lalo Schifrin theme music in my head already......

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NBlob mutters...

Posted January 21, 2010
I reckon Nat has it for a working title with Forking Faff.

Unless you're into that affirmation, positiveity crap in which case "Belated Booker" may work.

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Bangar mumbles...

Posted January 21, 2010
Well I'm having home made Baileys because

a)I made it

b)I used cream so it's got a use by date

c)It tastes great

d)Lack of current faff

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sparty ducks in to say...

Posted January 21, 2010
I'll have the ebook version so I can do a simple "find and replace" on the Rhino ;-)

Infact all books should come with that degree of customisation

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
Anyone else notice how well- behaved everybody's being; quiet, well spoken, faff at a minimum. What's going on? JB what have you put in our blog chips?!!

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted January 21, 2010
I think we've been drugged while JB sleeps off the 24 000 kilometres.

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Scott swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 21, 2010
Yeh, Abigail I thought it's a bit quiet and civilised around here. Now that may be because I joined just before the Christmas highjinks and everyone is now back at work.

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 22, 2010
Ask not what we can do for JB, ask only what JB can do for us with just 50 of those crisp new $10 notes they're going to give him for the book:

http://www.saltnlight.co.uk/

There's room for all. We'd never squabble over rooms again.

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Quokka asserts...

Posted January 22, 2010
I'm AWOL because my internet nook isn't air conditioned, Scott. And it's farkin hot.

And I have other temptations.

1. A plunge pool that's 25C

2. Air conditioning in which to read/lurk/eat lindt/hide from the giant purple squid.

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NBlob reckons...

Posted January 22, 2010
Aunty Q,

The disquieting thing about figments of ones imagination is that they can get to you anywhere.

Would his ink be a pigment of my imgaination?

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Quokka reckons...

Posted January 22, 2010
Nbob, you're talking to a woman who at age 3 was taken to a child psychiatrist so that my mother could complain at length about my Invisible Friend.

To her great annoyance the shrink reported that I was 'a perfectly ordinary little girl'.

FWIW, I can see your squid in all its purple glory over by the sun lounge. Its asking for Iced Vo Vos.

If I were you I'd go get them, quick smart.

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Abigail reckons...

Posted January 22, 2010
Lord Bob of Nowhere, and Sir Hvk, if you open the link above you'll discover there is way for you to flash your titles around for a few notes. (which are on JB now that he's good for $10 )

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Respond to 'One week. 24 000 words.'

The Union of European Socialist Republics.

Posted January 17, 2010 by John Birmingham
Anyone remember that alterny WW2 trilogy I wrote? The one where the Sovs grabbed up a whole lot more of Western Europe at the end of the book?

Lets go back there, shall we, while I deal with some manuscript polishing issues on the latest book.

Given that both sides will develop their nuclear arsenals much more quickly, and given the Sovs have foreseen the collapse of their Empire in the original time line, how do you see the ten years after the nuking of Berlin playing out?

I'm especially interested in how the UK evolves, as it would be a frontline state in this scenario.

Assume a Kolhammer Presidency from 1952.

241 Responses to ‘The Union of European Socialist Republics.’

jennicki is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
I'm sorry this is wayyy over my head.

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted January 17, 2010
Just knocked off work. Need to adjust brainspace before tackling this puppy.

1st cab off the rank, northern Italy. Last we heard it was under Red control. As the North of Italy is the manufacturing & money country & the rest is just agricultlure & ancient history I see the Communists taking the entire peninsula.

Which probably implies they are going to take everything East of there. Greece, Turkey etc.

Could Corsica or Malta be a missile farm?

France is going to cop another pounding as (from my reading) the Iron Curtain will bisect La Belle France.

The US still has a much improved capacity as it has the people to explain the development of the tech, the Soviets just have some of the tech. A little like the rosetta stone I guess.

Will think more & return.

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Tarl swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 17, 2010
Well, given that Stalin was in control when the revelations came to them, my assumption is that Soviet leadership clamps down *real* hard to prevent Glasnost & Perestroika from ever happening.

That suggests a jackboots and cattle-prod type occupation of Europe to prevent things like the Prague Spring from even being thought of. Off-hand, the images I'm getting are closer to Stirling's Drakaverse than anything else I can see. Not just an Iron Curtain, but a radioactive un-depleted Uranium curtain.

Once Stalin dies, butterflies become dominant in terms of who becomes his successor - all the major characters in our timeline will have already been killed off by Stalin. Whoever is left to take over is the one who gets to make choices about whether to continue the brutal occupation or trim it back - I assume the brutality is likely to win, simply from sheer inertia and terror at what would happen on letting loose.

So, what does the U.S. do with improved technology against a nightmarish Soviet? Probably cold war elevated to a higher level - satellite phones dropped by stealth aircraft to help undergrounds coordinate, followed by shoot-on-sight attitude of the Soviet defence forces keeping things lively.

By the time Kolhammer becomes president, Stalin will be approaching his due date (1953, as I recall), so negotiations probably can't take place until after Kolhammer has been president a couple of years - it will take the successor at least a year before he can deal with foreign diplomacy on a serious basis.

So, come 1954 or so, Kolhammer can try to scale back the cold war - against a decade of habit and a Soviet terror of losing control of their own people.

An interesting question is what happens in China - does the U.S. allow Russia to prop up Mao, or do the Russians allow the U.S. to prop up Chiang Kai-Shek? Has Japan been forced to burp up Manchuria, or do they still hold it? This could affect the quality of allies the Soviets have at the time.

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Bondiboy66 is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
I'd agree with NBob - the yanks and their allies are going to have a major technological advantage in the longer term as having more of the people to explain and expand the tech as well as prior experience will give them the edge over the Soviets who are basically back engineering and working it out from books.

Not sure how the maps are going to look, but I imagine Great Britain will benefit strongly from the assistance from the Americans tech-wise. So too Australia in the Asia Pacific region. Regarding that, if cards are played right we could avoid that whole communist/domino theory palaver throughout Asia and bring the Chinese, Viets, Indos et al on side. And also avoid the whole partitioning of the Sub-continent nastiness too. And maybe the Korean peninsula business could be avoided. All of that if played out, would place The West in a superior position to the Soviets. Still, any conflict would be hugely nasty merely due to the vast areas and populations involved.

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Tarl asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
As for the UK, I assume they become somewhat of a satellite to the U.S. in this scenario - with a cold war in full gear and the curtain that much closer, they are going to have military forces coming out of their ears, probably a good chunk of them from overseas. U.S., Australian and Canadian forces predominating, I would guess. The U.K. probably recovers from rationing more quickly than in our timeline (which I recall took over a decade), due to supplies being sent to "the front" by cross-atlantic allies.

English kids would grow up with the full knowledge that the sword of armageddon hangs over their pointy little heads, which might change their attitudes somewhat. I'm envisioning a country that is used to seeing military convoys on the highways every few days, and subject to daily "duck-and-cover" messages as propaganda to keep alive the fear of the Soviet bear. Add to that a few actual news reports of the brutal occupation, the fear probably hits nerves.

Not a pretty scenario.

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sibeen reckons...

Posted January 17, 2010
Malta is an interesting one. As it was never captured by the Germans during world war 2 (the original) I suspect it would have also retained its independence in JB's universe.

With that, England would be quite loathe to give it up after the Germans were out of play as it, in conjunction with Gibralta give stategic command of the Mediterranian.

I'm not sure that Kolhammer would allow the Sovs to spread too far east, as NowhereBob proposes. Letting them get control of Turkey would let them slip down to those arab states with all that lovely oil.

Which may bring up another point, what happens with Israel? The Arabs may even join forces with the Sovs to ensure that Israel doesn't get off the ground. The Israeli State of Australia, anyone?

I'm supposed to be working, and not on this :)

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Tarl mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Interesting point about Israel. By the end of the war, Palestine already had a huge jewish population (something like 30%, as I recall). Arab/Jewish conflict had been ongoing since 1928, so the Arabs in the neighborhood might decide a little preemptive genocide would be in order (say, tactics similar to what went on in Rwanda).

The rest of European Jews end up mostly under Soviet occupation. They weren't known for making it easy for them to emigrate, so the issue of a Jewish nation in the middle east may never even crop up.

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Sweet_Jane_Says mumbles...

Posted January 17, 2010
Stalin would become more paranoid and increase the purges. This may trigger a "humanitarian" reaction by the UK and American powers to initiate more hot spots in the Cold War.

The Soviets would not invade Turkey or Greece. Turkey and Greece have kept each other occupied since the Trojan War. Even Stalin would see no reason to intrude in their skirmishes.

J.

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Sweet_Jane_Says puts forth...

Posted January 17, 2010
Depleted uranium weaponry would be fast-tracked.

J.

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Abe mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Maybe with all the economics text books that would have travelled back in time in the residual memory of various slates, the sovs would see the error in the ways and adopt a market economy sooner than they otherwise would and maybe, maybe they's try to make the USSR the great market economy of the east.

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Brunswick puts forth...

Posted January 17, 2010
Study soviet history. Richard Rhodes's Arsenals of Folly shows that a large number of the people in power in the soviet union had realized that the system didn't work and couldn't be made to work in the 1960's. If Nixon had ended up President, rather than Kennedy (who made up shit like the missile gap and was more of a warmonger than George W Bush), the Soviet Union would have broken apart in the late 60's rather than 80's. Kennedy's dick waving empowered the reactionary conservatives in the Soviet Union.

Another myth Rhodes busts is the republican fantasy that Reagan forced the Soviets to bust themselves financially. Soviet spending on weapons reached its peak in the mid-70's when Reagan was still governor of California. Reagan could also have triggered the fall apart of the Soviet Union earlier in the 80's after Iceland - but Cheney and his mates put a stop to that, convincing Reagan that the Soviets were really really strong. Smart people in the US intelligence services already knew the Soviet union was going to collapse and that defence spending in the 80's to fight a soviet threat was a complete money grab because the Soviets in the 80's would have had trouble defending themselves, let alone fighting an aggressive war.

If the Russians are going to do anything, it is to look at the Chinese model and transition towards that sort of authoritarian capitalism.

Russia as a real two dimensional villain died with Stalin.

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NBlob puts forth...

Posted January 17, 2010
Are state of the Art insurrection skills > or < Soviet repression.

In our timeline the Poles, Czecks, Slavs, Turkics et al didn't take it lying down & got shipped off to labour/renedification camps. + revolutionary tips, cheats & hints from Ghandi to Shining Path, can Moscow maintain any kind of effective controll across the majority of 2 continents?

A: Could the / would the allies forment such excellent insuurections as to make the Soviet Bloc ungovernable.

B: Imagine the civil works the USSR would achieve with 10 ? fold population to draw on.

A 2015 sniper team would make Uncle Jo's First "peace time" May Day Parade his last.

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Bangar reckons...

Posted January 17, 2010
I'm thinking that Stalin would clamp down hard, and after that anyone in power would be to afraid to lift their foot from the peoples neck because they'd be held to account for everything that had been done. Don't know if this would be enough to make the Allies attack.

The Allies would definitely work very closely together esp with the Uptimers experience with multi national task forces.

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mrblenny asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
If anything the Soviets are in a worse position then the Allies post WWII in the alternate universe and they still have the same shortcomings they had (have) in our universe. Namely the sheer size of the US economy compared to Russia's*. Stalin may have been a crazy, murderous despot but he did stay in control of the Soviet empire until his death (perhaps murder). This suggests he is not stupid and his reading of the future might lend itself to an alliance with the Allies to prevent the inevitable Soviet collapse, perhaps citing the threat of eventual Chinese rise to help? If he did decide to try and go toe to toe with the Allies then a Chinese style reformed economy would no doubt be appealing, perhaps even in combination with a Chinese alliance?

*The US military with a paltry ~5% of GDP budget could field a carrier force in excess of 12 not including the smaller marine carriers whereas the Soviets only ever really got one in the water with what 30-40% (?) of their economy devoted to the military.

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DrYobbo asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
"Anyone remember that alterny WW2 trilogy I wrote?"

Yeah that one I keep meaning to read?

Erm, never mind

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Abigail would have you know...

Posted January 17, 2010
Britain and the US would be at loggerheads as they both brawl for Israeli allegiances (Israel having found power in Stalin's Russia by promising him a safe base in the unfamiliar desert territory) to shore them up; Arabia having gone to the side of France and the Mediterranean.

Make use of London's underground sewer system as site of new parliament after Westminster bombed by the Americans

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savo ducks in to say...

Posted January 17, 2010
We’ll either have a nuclear stalemate or one side or the other will actually push the button. Let’s go for the stalemate.

I’d image a much more active series of surrogate wars popping up around the globe as evangelical communism props up tribalism and some dictatorial regimes and butts heads with colonialism and the hardened of crust of post war capitalism. Chechnya , North West India, the Italian Riviera and Amur River blow up into bloody conflicts that distract Stalin from his deliverance of the rest of Europe from the yolk of Imperial [insert favourite Anti Capitalistic slogan here]. This will happen before Kolhammer becomes President and is likely to be one of the major reasons why he does become President.

Britain will keep its colonies even expanding them by grabbing some of Germany’s. She does not allowing self government for fear of the communist scourge, resulting in a whole host of ‘Liberation Army’ attacks on British home soil, led generally by disaffected politicians who had read about their future in FleetNet. Strangely, India does become self governing in that British bureaucrats leave and locals begin make decisions. But India’s relationship with Britain develops into one as close as Scotland or Wales. These ‘Liberationist’ attacks, along with the reduced but ever present threats from Communist Europe and plenty of internal destabilisation by Communist backed Unionists, forces the British Government into a state of Martial Law run by a Benign Dictatorship endorsed by the Royal family and both major parties. Peace settles over the green hills of Britain like ashes from a furnace.

The US is the biggest winner in the post-conflict land grab, directed through Kolhammer’s office and supported by the Quiet Room. It brought all of France’s external territories into the US Commonwealth as self-governing unincorporated territories of the United States (this included Vietnam - a fact that always brought a smile to the corner of Phil’s mouth) along with large parts of the Dutch East Indies. The Soviet Union missed its chance to join in the land grab by not being able project it’s influence as quickly as Britain and the US, but did manage to hold the northern part of main land Japan and its juggernaut simply rolled over a goodly portion of the oil rich Arab states and kept them. Kolhammer, fearing a backlash from Uptimers, negotiates a Jewish State in Porto Rico. Jerusalem is firmly locked behind the Iron Curtain and will remain so, according to the best minds available, until the Second Coming.

I'll talk more of Britain later.

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HAVOCK reckons...

Posted January 17, 2010
MR Blemy. whilst I like some of trhe thought process and have not yet put mine up on this one. I will just comment on a couple of related things.

I think OLD joes first play would be European and that in itself, assuming NO nuclear exchange on the battle field negates under most circumstances the US Naval combat power advantage. Whilst carriers are great striking and sea control pieces of gear , for a European land war of sorts, they are not key.

UNLESS you figure in a battle the US decides to go after the Kamchatka or the likes, and even invade, ALA..ARC LIGHT STYLE as Eric L Harry wrote, all be it at a much later historical time line and not an Alt one at that.

Brunswick

WHAT you need to bear in mind is that this is an ALT history time line and the players are well aware of HISTORY, or that which had happened but not yet.

so the debate as to who triggered the Soviet bloc collapse really does not come into play.

WHATS being asked is that GIVEN THE Final wash up, post that in 10 years..where are they at.

I can debate all fucking day the whys and what fucking nots of historical machinations in the political realm and their subsequent impact upon players and historical values..BUT THAT not whats been fucking well asked. and to be HONEST, it kinda fucking shits me, that people go so god dam off track and whats essentially a question about..WHAT YOU THINK MIGHT HAVE HAPPENED FFS in the ALT time line.

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Brian asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
Economic warfare - wonderful stuff.

Command economy versus Market economy.

The Sovs were great at spying and getting key technologies. They did very poorly at industrial espionage where the sheer mass of tech overwhelmed them. There were a few classic boo-boos - one involving a computer chip, where if you read the circuitry you could see it was a direct copy of a US make. In a lot of stuff it was imitated but not terribly well implemented.

You could make case that the Sovs would move to a Chinese market driven model but the time frame is far too short. Most of the Sov budget would be involved in trying to tie down their empire. They'd be faced with a similar dilemna as the Brits after WW2 - keep the Empire or move to a welfare state. You have enough money to do only one - not both.

So .o.o.o. what are you going to do? Run a space program, churn your entire weapens arsenal, build the equivalent of a few Intel chips factories, kickstart your bio weapons program etc etc etc . . . .hmm . . .try and trade with the rest of the world . . . .export class warfare . . . .

To my mind . . .if the Politbureau read glasnotz pretty closely and figured out what Starwars was really about . . .they'd be looking towards a quick kill strategy 'cause time ain't on their side.

The States will get space supremacy first. The Sovs may start doing shell games involving nukes and cargo ships . . . .

England . . .the floating aircraft carrier will be the most likely first strike point. Until ICBM's, cruise missiles and MIRV's make the point moot.

Hmm . . ..don't discount what a Battle Wagon equipped with cruise missils or drones can do either.

For fun . . . I'd release the Little Red Book into China, just so Mao can collect royalty rights. Gotta look after authors, I say.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
Russian nuclear weapons would be less of a threat in this timeline, remember the lasers.

I could see America fasttracking satalite mounted laser systems. We are also assuming Stalin's death in 53 as per otl. Maybe with modern medical equipment his death was delayed?

The soviets got the Vanguard in 42, that leaves 9 years for Soviet doctors to use any information from it's medical database, think also of the um shal we say insentives Stalin would use to encourage results. Don't forget that Russian uptimer, forgot his name, who was arranging a resistance.

Kolhammer takes over in 52 he would help this out assuming it hasn't been wiped out.

10 years after Berlin would put the next book about 54, time for both sides to build up enough for a massive conventional war. Think ww III with limited use of tactical nukes. Bigger ones would not be able to be deployed due to lasers.

Stalin and his successor will not let go.

Sorry about the length.

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Bangar mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Brian, I'll have to check but memory says the Allies ended up the Nazi bio weapons. That brings the next question, the uptimers being less squemish and result driven would they use them?

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damian mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Hopefully someone, referring to the uptime records, has quietly shot Ronald Reagan before '52, yeah?

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Bangar asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
I wonder if pre-emptive is a legal defence. "you saw the records he was going to ..."

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Damian,

that actually raises an interesting question. Would the Allies seek out individuals who were key players in History, or in this case..yet to emerge and take them out as a precautionary measure?.

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HAVOCK mumbles...

Posted January 17, 2010
BANGAR..you are thinking like I am on this particular one

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Scott asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
Remember what Kolhammer said, this will end with a t34 on the streets of Washington or a American tank in Red Square. Not the exact words but you get his meaning.

Do you think he will let communism stew for the next 70 years or atempt to crush it. Porn I know but a captured Stalin on trial for his abuses.

One thing that never happened after the collapse of communism is it was never put on trial. National socialism was completely discredited in the Nuremberg trials. People stil claim that international socialism would work if it was implemented correctly. Lost count of the number of lefty fuckwitts who argued this at uni. Kolhammer would not let this opertunity slip through his fingers.

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damian is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
Speaking of Glasnost, Gorbie was 21 in 1952 and either driving harverters on collective farms or already a student at Moscow Uni.

Brian - the relationship between technology and espionage that you outline is a bit overblown. Harks back the the Rosenberg trial, where some folks were executed for passing "secrets" that had been public domain for over a decade.

Havock and Baganr - isn't that Minority Report?

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damian mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Scott - what you're saying should have happened didn't happen because it couldn't, you can't prove something that isn't true. Also, your attempt to make a connection between "national socialism" and "international socialism" is a word game that has no referent in the world of facts and history.

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HAVOCK asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
Damian VERY MUCH..But I suspect some would say..well we know he has the capability..eg POL POT, ...would be interesting. I think some would not be able to stiffel the urg, to strike first.

SO..

I’m trying to establish just how far they will have come Tech wise in 10 years. I keep coming back to a thought, that whilst the initial leaps were reasonably easy, the next 2 or three generational jumps will require a vastly superior industrial base, eg…Satellites and Mirvs and ICBM’s etc. And I mean accurate one. The Germans were already well down the path, the US now has the knowledge base as well.

Whats Kolhammer been up to in the 10 years, I’m, guessing this has an impact on him running for the top job. Has there been scraps between the USSR and the Allies.

What about NATO?

The UK will be one big landing strip and jump off point. I would expect massive missile defensive systems as well for SAMS..

Could the US field the Likes of an F111 by 54..I would almost think so, that means SAC would be created. We also need to remember they went for the easily done tech upgrades and manufacturing, post the war, they will be looking to jump two more generations as well.

Would you build a F4 or would they look at the 15, or is that too ambitious for the time. I’m inclined to think so.

If we look at Europe, what weapons systems are they going to field, because this will also have an impact on the numbers available.

Super Sherman’s were good, but I would gather they would want an upgunned version of say an M60, upgunned centurion for the Brits.

Russia will be cranking out mil hardware flat out and following the time honoured, Numbers game, but they will up grade as well. HOW far…T62 by 54, how many will be available.

Wire guided rockets..Milan style…TOW?.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
Yeh Havock, Gaddafi and what's his name crackafat, both examples of people in need of cranial aeration.

I can also see people in India brawling because it isn't divided, lots of religious nutters wanting there own little failed state. The allies won't make the mistake of creating Islamic states of Pakistan and Bangladesh. Speaking of countries like Australia and Brazil are going to make a killing on oil and gas. The president of Indonesia is a uptimer isn't he? He may use Indonesia's resource revenue to undermine Islam and go back to it's Hindu

roots. Islamic feelings may be weaker in the 1950s.

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damian mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
Havock - I think definitely something like an F111 by '54. And the same with the other side.

The basic theory for modern computers exited by 1950, and both Turing and von Neumann would be available to help accelerate things. The process for designing and manufacturing silicon chips and even transistors would take a little time, but given the timeframe from '42 to '52, something would be emerging and a lot faster than in OTL.

That means that a lot of tech requiring the IT to be present is possible, with or without the modern weapons it is used to drive. Computer controlled V1, for instance?

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HAVOCK ducks in to say...

Posted January 17, 2010
To be honest, I cannot see Stalin waiting too long, I would suspect that he would issue orders to try and find out JUST what the US has. I’ll also wager he would be willing to trade a few more men and cities as well in a nuclear exchange. If he did take a pause, well I would figure it would be 12 months, maybe 2 years but that’s a stretch. He knows full well the longer the US is given the greater the issues he will have. Hes not rational by our standards and he wants ALL over Europe and more.

Question is, where does the first skirmish take place, where does he test the Allies resolve and their equipment without pissing away everything and kicking things off in Europe too early.

That really means a stoush is possible in the Mid east.

Britain, will be shitting itself, I suspect a lot of effort into Air defence, both ground based and aircraft and the US / UK will develop early the U2 or better, Intel, that’s airborne and intel from elint as well.

Anybody forsee a rapid advancement and creation of Echelon , but in a more basic form. Insurgency fomented in the USSR will be put down brutally, Stalin creates off shore issues to help draw US/ UK resources away from his area as well.

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Naut has opinions thus...

Posted January 17, 2010
I reckon the Soviets would try and do what China is trying now. They would try to be Communist internally and Capitalist externally. Will their expanded territories give them the natural resources to pull it off?

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HAVOCK is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
Naut..another question is..WILL Kohlhammer allow it..will the Allies allow Russia to consolidate gains..at lkeast gains external to the EU Mainland..eg MID EAST

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Scott puts forth...

Posted January 17, 2010
Damian, National socialism and international socialism are two faces of the same coin. The difference between them was how they achieved the goal. I find it quite interesting that both systems not only controled the civilian population through terror but they also both disposed of people with death camps. Now before you jump on me and say that there is a difference between gas chambers and what the Russians did examine the results. What matter if you murder people with Zyklon B or you use cold, starvation and over work. You are stil dead. From what I recall the Soviets managed to murder 50 million people! The reason we know so little about the details is the lack of scrutiny. Modern day historians examining Russia's history have been arrested and had material confiscated. The only reason socialism works for a short time is that the government uses force to obtain resources from productive citizens. Eventually productive citizens work the minimum they can, why put in the hard yards if some one is going to come along and take the lot? Just look at Venezuela, this cycle has repeated so many times that it is mindblowing that anyone falls for it. Now that the country is falling apart the president is blaming everyone else bar himself.

Ot I know and apologies.

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Scott reckons...

Posted January 17, 2010
Good point Havock, the longer Stalin leaves it the stronger the US is. In fact if he doesn't kick off the ball in a big way early he is going to get hammered. America and even little Australia have not only the tech from the future but willing teachers who are familiar with the tech. Over 12 thousand of them, many of them holding verry high quals.

In contrast the Soviets have one ship and book learning, this is a race the Soviets were always going to lose badly. Add in to the mix the Western economic flexability the verry thing that broke the Soviet Union in otl.

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted January 17, 2010
SHIT!, this can trap ya easily. OK

1 They already have pretty goo overhead intel, thanks to the drones. Likewise radar coverage of the UK, I forgot about Halabi. Missile tech will come up rapidly and that then given the UK a very good defensive stance, especially when its against low tech rockets and Air delivered nukes. Even cruise missiles will have a hard time, assuming the interceptor tech outpaces the ALCM of the USSR , which i think it will.

So that puts me back to thinking, bleed the US /UK forces at another location, test and assess their capabilities and do it with a proxy..somewhere.

RAMP and i mean RAMP the hell outta production and I would launch at the US and UK etc in europe within 12 monhths..no later and do so with whatever tech i had.

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D-Ron84 ducks in to say...

Posted January 17, 2010
Something that no one has mentioned is south east asia, indo is now on the us/uk/aus side, as is 2/3 of japan, and the nationalist part of china, when this all adds up it gives the allies most of asia, blocking the commie move south, preventing a few wars (sorry "conflicts") and may also help stop asian jihad issues later on due to greater allied control over the region

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Scott mumbles...

Posted January 17, 2010
Havock, it's going to be a bloodbath. Perhaps that's how Kolhammer gets elected.

He warned Roosevelt about Stalin and was ignored. Lets say that the meds from the future keep the old bastard alive, after the end of the war he tries to play nice with Stalin and when Stalin is ready Roosevelt's lack of Preparedness gives America another Pearl. Kolhammer may not have been electable considering his views on everything, same sex couples, intergration, economics and his hard line in military matters. A couple of years shocasing the success of The Zone, interviews where he warns of the Soviet intentions, add in a overseas disaster and his electability becomes possible. Nay inevitable god or in this universes case Birmo has said so!

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damian would have you know...

Posted January 17, 2010
Scott, you're still mixing things in a way that doesn't actually make sense. Yes, both Hitler's and Stalin's regimes were oppressive and murderous. No, it isn't this word "socialism" that connects them, not even a little bit. It doesn't make any sense at all in any possible historical context to articulate their competing ideologies in that way. The presence of the word in the Nazi's name was part of the alphabet soup of Weimar politics, and not a signifier. In fact, the Nazi economic agenda was heavily market focused and driven by corporations. The Nazi's hated the "socialist" Weimar social democrats more than anyone, and in turn conservative Junkers, landowners, shop keepers and the middle classes were definitely pro-Nazi. There has recently emerged a historically illiterate subculture that takes the presence of the S in NSDAP as an identifier, but this is an extremely misleading position to put forward. In economic and political terms, the Nazis were, and have always been understood to be, right wing and not left.

No argument that if you kept the subject of conversation away from economics, Hitler and Stalin would probably get along pretty well, agreeing on most subjects.

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damian asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
Havock, taking sully what you say in terms of seriously ramping up production, simple air delivery of nukes from manned aircraft would put the numbers in the soviet's favour. At least, imagine another Battle of Britain, but with nukes.

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Scott is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17, 2010
Damian, I don't hold my belief soley on the s.

The Soviet Union and menny western acodemics spent a lot of time and efort trying to distence National Socialism from the International version. You are quite right however a lot of German companies were enthusiastic in supporting the party. Socialism is about central government control each brand if I could use that term goes about it in different ways.

Today we have a brand called Social Democracy.

This is because the other two brands National Socialism and International

Socialism have forever tainted themselves.

I note that in Europe Social Democracy is slowly slipping over the edge in to the time tested method of keeping people in line.

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Scott reckons...

Posted January 17, 2010
Btw Damian, my last comment we could argue all week and get nowhere. It's late and I don't have a lot of my source material with me.

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damian asserts...

Posted January 17, 2010
Scott - agreed, no point in arguing. To summarise, my point is that Nazism was not a kind of socialism, as you are suggesting. Where the contrary position is a sort of article of faith, I've no business entering discussion and apologise for haveing done so (tired, not looking for a fight, honest ;).

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Scott would have you know...

Posted January 17, 2010
Damian, all good.

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sparty asserts...

Posted January 18, 2010
1. Centre left govt again (ie Atlee creating welfare state - seen as good thing)

2. The Labour party division over CND etc happening in the late forties rather than the early eighties. UK knowing they are fu***d in any conflict (there is no "good defensive stance for UK in Sov dominated Europe with SRBMs) have debate about becoming airstrip 1.

3. Race / immigration being a real issue (Admiral Halabi maybe a poster child for either side of that debate)

4. UK maybe trying to subvert just a little US (we know we are natural allies dosnt mean we have to bend over every time)- ie decolonialise properly, becoming dominant 3rd power after US and USSR. Maybe keeping together a genuine Oz, New Zealand Canada axis.

Key 1949 election where all this comes to the boil.

No amount of starwars weaponary is going to keep UK safe.

oh and Jim Laker has nervous breakdown on eve of 1956 ashes series with teh weight of history on his shoulders.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted January 18, 2010
My activities here have garnered some notoriety. More and more I am asked if I am the same Paul Boylan who is included among the internet blog group known as "Burgers."

I, of course, deny that I am in any way connected to this place or with any of you people for obvious liability reasons, but the truth is that I first came here after reading the AOT series and wanting to know if there would be a fourth book. I emailed Birmingham who brushed my question aside and said, essentially “yeah, maybe, if I get around to it; I wanna try some other stuff first.”

After all this time, this is the first indication that there is going to be a fourth book. I am fucking thrilled.

The question is complex from an extremely theoretical geopolitical framework. Despite the Event, the same basic geopolitical framework that created and will destroy the Soviet Union will still operate. I have to ask myself how George Friedman over at Stratfor would answer the question.

Off the cuff, the Soviets would have utterly crushed the Poles to avoid the rise of the trade union movement that was the beginning of the end for the Soviet Empire. Although the Soviets would be enriched from an expanded empire, they would still be unable to compete on the same level as the west due to a flawed economic model. Antiballistic missiles would be developed both sides, which would counter the threat and usefulness of theater/strategic nuclear and chemical weapons. Kolhammer would know this and make it a priority before and after attaining the presidency. Biologic weapons would not be the focus of a a Cold War because, even though the Soviets demonstrated the willingness to use such weapons, both sides would learn the lessons learned in this time-line, i.e., biological agents are simply too dangerous to weaponize, posing more threat to those holding such weapons than on the enemy that they might be used upon.

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Lobes mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
Kolhammer was/is Jewish which makes him an unlikely candidate for executive office in any lifetime.

Also socialism =\= national socialsm =\= social democracy

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Murphy swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
I suspect, given some revelations about communist sympathizers, that many of those folks would be rounded up and curtailed in the United States. This could lead to an earlier, perhaps more virulent manifestation of the McCarthy Era, led by a different political figure (assuming McCarthy is discredited for his indiscriminate use of power in the original time line).

I also think we need to consider how the situation in Asia manifests itself. In the original time line you had a split between US and Soviet proxies in places such as Korea and Vietnam. Do the Soviets punch through the Japanese Forces in China and reach all of these regions before the US can occupy them?

If they do then that might actually work to the advantage of the US. We would not find ourselves entangled in the Korean or Vietnam Wars. And I suspect we'd probably put our eggs into securing and holding the line in Japan.

Another question to consider is the state of British Colonialism at the end of the war. Sure, the Empire is going to go away, but how does that happen? Which way does India go for instance? Do they swing hard over to the Communists or do they make their own way? What do they do about the Pakistanis? Will they be more proactive at dealing with those folks?

As for a Kolhammer Presidency, he has got the same problems that the original presidents had.

1. A mass influx of veterans into the workforce leading to a potential economic downturn which has to be managed.

2. A coming Civil Rights revolution with the real possibility of violent resistance in the South.

3. Fear over communism and nuclear war.

4. A counterculture push back against three and assisting two.

He'll have to deal with those four issues while trying to transition a petroleum invested economy into something based upon renewable energy sources. He'll have to try to do this while fighting a powerful lobby on that front. Then he'll have to fight for a reasonable working healthcare system.

And lastly, he'll have to watch for the military industrial complex, which will try to sell him all sorts of wonder weapons which aren't worth the money spent to develop them. Things like nuclear recoilless rifles and 280 mm atomic cannons, among other things.

All while being called not much better than a communist himself.

Frankly, I don't think he can get elected. Even though by our lights he might be a conservative, in 1952 he'll look like a Socialist at best.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Lobes swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Re India and Pakistan; Partition occurred in 1948 in our timeline, I can't imagine it would occur the same way again, mostly because there would be Hindu hit squads out to get Nehru

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Mark R. Whittington has opinions thus...

Posted January 18, 2010
With respect for Murph, one wonders if, in fact, the McCarthy Era witch hunts get short circuited due to foreknowledge of how they play out. Besides, we would have foreknowledge of who the real spies and subversives are...

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Murphy mutters...

Posted January 18, 2010
Mark, I think the hunt would be more selective in many respects and run by someone else. McCarthy aside, there were folks working for the Sovs during that time period.

But I think that caution about a McCarthy style witchhunt might be counterbalanced by revelations about just how bad Stalin is. The fear will still be there but rather than a vaguely articulated fear of Communism, it will be a more personalized fear of a man documented in the original timeline.

Further, foreknowledge of known spies and subversives does not preclude new spies and subversives coming on line, on both sides of the Wall.

I am not saying that things will be worse per se, just different. It could be that much of that fear which fueled Communism will instead find focus in the Civil Rights movement. I suspect the Southern States, which are deeply invested in maintaining the status quo (and not just for reasons of race but also economics) may fight a great deal harder than they did in the original timeline.

Which was pretty hard as it was.

I can easily see, and we saw it in the original trilogy, temps railing against civil liberties for minorities, women and homosexuals. I can easily see some rabble rouser pointing to African American Civil Rights at the lynchpin (my apologies for there is no pun intended) to what many might see as a cultural decline.

So I think Kolhammer would have to deal with issues of internal division while managing a shaky economy and dealing with a very real foreign security threat.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Madam Morgana is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18, 2010
Given that Germany is attached by land to lots of the rest of Europe (Japan, in comparison is a set of islands), the original nuking would have immediate health effects on surrounding countries - sacre bleu! - and medium to long term effects on population health, agriculture, and wild flora and faunae.

The UK would also probably be expected to deal with a lot of the medical evacuees/refugees. Which would stimulate jobs in the health sector and also accelerate their health professionals expertise in radiation sickness, cancers, birth defects and fertility/reproductive issues.

Havock would be your man to fight the giant glowing Weasels of Western Europe.

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Bangar swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
With the known spies, depending on the individual and their reasons I can see a couple of things happening.

1) A knock on the door "We're watching you very carefully don't do anything stupid"

2) As above "How would you like to serve your country/ You are going to serve your country", a double agent is born.

3) As above "You're coming with us".

Of course looking at the reasons the for why they originally turned would be important to spot others but what would catch most spies out is they lack the familiarity with capabilities of the uptimers tech.

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NBlob reckons...

Posted January 18, 2010
Am intrigued by the resistance to a Kohlhammer presidency. Just how good would things have to be in the Zone for the rest of the continental US to want some of that action.

Is it feasible that the uptimers decide it's all to FKN hard fighting the cultural inertia and move to somewhere like Puerto Rico to restart the process?

I'm still thinking about what an additional 70 odd years of experience in fields as diverse as Enhanced Interrogation Techniques through the use of Antibiotics & Green Politics to Economic Theory impact how things develop.

I particularly remember the brifing given where a junior officer talked about a war with ideas not tanks, bombs & planes. This kind of thinking will in some fields accelerate development, in others (particulalry the soft social issues) will likely cause backlash.

How would I react to an NBob from 2050 in a silver jump suit telling me I was a barbarian & needed to do X. Y and Z? Not well I sugest.

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gtrof has opinions thus...

Posted January 18, 2010
Stalin shouldn’t wait long at all. If he wants to the Soviet Union to survive long term, he needs to take Europe and knock the U.S. into economic decline. Plus even though he has eliminated his rivals revealed historically, who has now grown dissatisfied with Stalin by his new actions? So beginning Red Storm Rising across Europe should be a goal. It might also be possible that he relies less on nuclear weapons. As others have said, 21C tech might provide working ABM systems for the USA. Even if they were limited they should be able to handle any AT Missile systems (short of those from the Vanguard).

Now how does NATO cope with this threat? IIRC the USSR had overrun Poland, Eastern Europe, and airborne forces were in France. Assuming that since only light forces ended up there, the Western Allies can either force or negotiate them out, leaving France undivided. Germany was protected by Himmler’s orders for chemical assault, so we have a united Germany this time except one that will require extensive rebuilding. At the very least it leaves more ground for the Soviets to cover if they move west.

There should be major NATO deployments to Germany and France. Hopefully the Allies can convince the French to remain militarily inside the command structure. In the regular TL we had NORTHAG and CENTAG for the Central Region. For the Post-Transition Cold War we have SOUTHAG in France, made up of an American Corps, British Corps, and finally French Army forces. This counters a communist Italy if it exists. Germany would see the deployment of CENTAG and NORTHAG covering the ground they did as in OTL but now moved forward to the border with Poland.

England becomes the lynch pin to REFORCER, Return of Forces to Europe (instead of REFORGER). The RAF should invest more in air defense and conventional warfare rather then the strategic side of things. Kolhammer can issue a blanket nuclear security agreement with the NATO powers letting the US (who will probably have an edge in this already) work on ICBMs, SSBNs, and so on. Prince Harry maybe can head a joint Special Operations command. The Royal Navy should invest in ASW and Air Defense. As cool as big English Fleet carriers would be, the USA can handle this area again. They have the moded Hillary Clinton plus what other super carrier projects coming off the drawing boards. Get an even better Centurion MBT out in force to be followed by a Chieftain/Challenger hybrid.

The Soviets will continue improving their conventional forces. My question is which MBT do they pick? The T-34/85 with upgrades is good but once quality tanks like the Centurion, M-60 Patton, and Leopard Is are produced they will need something close to par. Of course they could just go for spam tactics with T-55s with improvements. The wheeled BMPs will be joined by a tracked version I’d think, maybe jumping up to the BMP-2.

My question is which way does the Soviet Fleet go? In the Cold War the weakness of the Soviet blue water fleet was a factor not to be missed by the Soviet military analysts. Khrushchev who worked to prevent a strong Soviet Navy to start with is gone, plus they’ve had experience from building up to attack Japan. However the lost of the Pacific Fleet might leave a sour taste in Stalin’s mouth for expensive surface fleets. If he chooses to focus on smaller stuff, submarines and such, it will be a major weakness compared to the NATO powers.

Okay I’m tapped out for now…

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Brian asserts...

Posted January 18, 2010
As we look at the Sovs, we're forgetting the latter history with Afghanistan. Similar insurgency problems in vastly different theatres are going to be a nightmare. Existing Sov forces can't be demobilised they have to hold a third larger territory with an increased subject base 5 times larger than before. They have to rebuild shattered transport networks to simply move their tank armies around.

They also have to round up all the defeated armies in their subject territories.

Sov borders now include most of the Himalaya's, the entire Asian Pacific Coast. They can't man up a proper border defence for quite a bit. Hmm . . . .FOrmosa AKA Taiwan . . .that's a wild card.

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Guru Bob is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18, 2010
Stalin may also outlive his death in our time line given there is some debate as to whether he was murdered somehow.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stalin#Death_and_aftermath

Israle just wouldn't happen - probably Jewish people woudl be relocated to Mauritius - which was a plan whioch had soem currency in our post-war world and would short-circuit the whole Middle Eastern conflict issue - but which may not be so popular with Jewish people a few generations down the track once they recovered from the relief of just being still alive.

I think that while the Western allies like the Nationalists may still be in control of places like China - uinless there was some means for Kolhammer to reduce the underlying social and political issues in Asia there woudl still be a string of insurgencies and conflicts in Vietnam, Korea, Indoensia etc.

However in our timeline Uncle Ho did admire the US and wanted to base Vietnamese indepence upon the USA model in post war era, unfortunately the powers that be were more concerned about pandering to France who wanted their colonies back then to supporting a political outcome based upon Vietnamese nationalism. I am sure that I read somewhere that at one stage they even enabled surrendered Japanese troops to keep their weaponry so that they could 'keep the peace' until French troops arrived to take over. Very silly decisions.

I would also suggest that it would still take a generation for anyone in the Pacific to trust the Japanese in any real way. Especially after the invasion of Australia in the AOT universe... Making the notion of Japan being a useful ally moot. What would happen with Japan being a frontline state as well may be closer to the ongoing games that are played these days between North and South Korea.

Another thing - given that the Soviets have access to exactly the same info as the West - why would they build the same weapons (tanks, aircraft etc) which they did in our timeline - after all in AOT don't the Allies start making AK47s? Why would they rebuild failures? I could see the Russians fielding their own versions of Leopard tanks and A-10s...

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Tarl mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
Does the USSR control China? I don't recall that, but it's been a while since I read the last book.

Occupying larger territory doesn't necessarily mean they need huge armies; the Soviets mostly governed through the locals anyway, depending on a potential Red Army invasion to intimidate the locals into doing the right thing. With Stalin still in power, there would be no doubt that a Prague Spring or a Solidarnosc would be a rapid path to a darwin award.

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Scott mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
Before his election I could see Kolhammer using the quiet room to arrange for books such as Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar to be mass printed and smuggled in to Soviet controled countries. The Soviets spent a lot of efort and blood to cleanse the archives of the Vanguard. Information which still exists in the west.

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Scott swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Murph, a mass influx of veterans is just the thing the US economy needs at this point. Over 80 years of tech development to be mined. We are in uncharted waters economicly instead of the tech curve we are used to in otl it has all arrived in one lump. The productivity of individual workers will explode but add to this all the new startups, construction and a large number of vets remaining in uniform I think that labour shortages are a real possibility. In the shortcome things will become cheaper but look for inflation as skill shortages start to bite.

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted January 18, 2010
Scott, I'd have to do a bit of reading as it has been ages since my American History II lectures actually got past the end of World War II (the downside of teaching eight week classes) but if memory serves, the original timeline saw an economic downturn which was caused, in part, by demobilization.

The next question is ask is this. Yes, those vets get a G.I. Bill of some type (or do they?) but it will take a while to train them up to speed (two to four years). In the meantime, the economy is going to have a pretty rough go of it.

A film to watch might be The Best Years of Our Lives.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Best_Years_of_Our_Lives

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Guru Bob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Actually it would also be interesting to see what people like Einstein or Turing would do with 21st century tools? If they didn't have to prove their original great ideas and could accept them as already having been proven - could they then make more leaps of the imagination or intellect. Could Kolhammer bring together the greatest brains of that era and give them to tools to make further leaps ahead in human knowledge beyond what he brought with him? So while industry is struggling to catch up with the 21st century in a compressed timeframe he could be putting together the building blocks for the next great era of advancement - skipping the late 20th century altogether?

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Abigail reckons...

Posted January 18, 2010
Oh have I missed the boat on this one? is it *set* back in 53? (as though it is 1953, I mean). That makes a difference to one's understanding of the question

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Abigail puts forth...

Posted January 18, 2010
...just when guru bonb said that about Einstein and Turing, made me think, ok, is it set the but as though other things happened to influence how much impact one event could have over another, or is it set now but as though those govs are in power and using 21st c technology and events? confused. (the Einstein .Turing idea is interesting, btw)

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Guru Bob mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
Abigail - JB's question is about how the alternative history he sets up in his series of books would then progress about 10 years after the events he wrote about.

I think there were some references to Einstein etc in the books but I haven't read them for a while...

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Abigail reckons...

Posted January 18, 2010
ah, sorry, got it; cheers guru b.

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Chaz ducks in to say...

Posted January 18, 2010
Okay...

1, if europe is still pretty much on a war footing churchill will not get kicked out by Attlee but can easily see Churchill bringing in the NHS and state schooling.

2, As everyone will know about how things are in the east and what the soviets and their little helpers did uptime, this will reduce the appeal of groups like CND and of course remove the threat to Five and Six from soviet sympaphisers.

3, No state of Isreal, Palestine will stay Palestine under UK rule wth the usual suspects ending up in shallow graves. Sorry Menachim. There is no way that the UK would allow for instability in the Mid-east not with Stalin having access to Vanguard tech. Most of the ME will remain under UK rule with the adminstrators ands ecurity services winnowing and educating certain figures. Nasser would be excellent to bring 'onside' it of course goes without saying that Saddam Husseins family would have been 'dissapeered'.

4, We will see a change in the british labour party moving quickly to John Smiths ideals of 'one man, one vote' and in the face of stalins intrangigence clause 4 would go as well. The unions will take a knock and it's unlikely Scargill will ever rise up the ranks when it's clear that his actions helped destroy the Britosh Coal industry. In fact we could easily see the Labour party becoming a true social democratic party pretty quickly.

5, India will not stay as part of the empire although one would hope that partition would not occur, so reducing the chance of future sub-continent conflict. I'd assume that the poms would ensure that Gandhi did not get assassinated to avoid Nehru's disasterous rule and legacy.

6, Northern Ireland: Churchill was a pragmatist and I could easily see home rule being brought in with the removal of the B&T's and equal rights for the catholics. By doing this in the mid 40's would mean that the nationalist flame would be pretty small later on. Eire however could benefit from an influx of US knowhow with maybe a second zone being formed?

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Sweet Jane Says reckons...

Posted January 18, 2010
There's no way India could avoid partition. India was a land of divided territories under powerful men with different languages and faiths before the British. The Jewel in the Crown barely remained under British influence at the start of WWII. They will definitely take their chance to buck the British.

Without the UK, the Muslims will get their partition of Pakistan. The other religions may even get their own states. Fighting was bloody after Mountbatten's departure. It will be even bloodier without a Mountbatten. Flare-ups continue today.

J.

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Sweet Jane Says puts forth...

Posted January 18, 2010
What about Stalingrad? There's only a few weeks separating it from Wake. There's no way Hitler would halt the attack. He had a problem of fixating on ideas and was fixated on Russia.

J.

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Tarl mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
Uh, Jane - are you commenting again without bothering to read the source material?

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Sweet Jane Says swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Big bloody deal. I switched Wake for MIDWAY. MIDWAY!

J.

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Bangar has opinions thus...

Posted January 18, 2010
Tarl don't bother.

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted January 18, 2010
mnnghfh

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Chaz puts forth...

Posted January 18, 2010
Partition of india not needed if you don't have a nutjob like Nehru in charge. The british administrators would be more than able to point out to the big men how it would be everyones interests to have a large multi-faith India compared with a relatively well off India and a poor pakistan and bangladesh

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joe is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18, 2010
Lots of Vets returned + 21st century farming, mining, manufacture techniques = opposite of labour shortages! Skill shortages, sure, but not a shortage of workers (although you could train up a rather large number of engineers in a decade with enough modern textbooks).

Mass unemployment and consequent social strife, now dealing with that could be worth a Kolhammar presidency!

I would like to see the beginnings of an Internet appear - over telegraph cables, of course! London could become second only to the Zone as an Information Epicentre, frontline to Red Europe as it would be.

Im liking the idea of a Battle of Britain with hybrid tech.

Stalin's best options would seem to be:

1. maintain momentum and attempt to grab as much land as possible before being stopped. Dealing with fallout from Berlin would probably underline the fact that if the nukes start dropping like Dresden incendiaries, there isn't anything left worth owning.

2. take a leaf out of China's book and become the world's supplier of low-cost/quality knockoff products (manufactured by some of those 50 million otherwise-dead gulag residents?)

The Zone may become the new home of the UN perhaps?

I would expect the national players to do their utmost to CHANGE THINGS - so as to reduce the benefit to their opponents of OTL's historical lessons.

India's division I think would go ahead (my impression was that ghandi weighed up 1 million dying in dividing versus 100 million dying in a religious civil war, I think he would still do that) but with foresight of how nice a neighbour pakistan wouldnt be.... I doubt they would be generous about it.... heheh heres a thought: put Israel in between them! ew... that one's making my head spin a little.

Many historical figures from our timeline may be targeted by their future enemies preemptively, but that may not stop the effect they had - consider if you assassinated Mao before he had written his Red Book, the Mao in OTL did complete it, and the work itself would be able to have its effect regardless (possibly with the martyr-effect added in!).

Also, as someone mentions with Turing and Einstein, they would have the headstart of the rest of their life's work to build upon, with added advantage of knowing what didn't work out and the works of their students and their student's students to read.

Unlimited possibilities for explodey goodness here, but especially interesting to me is the social and geopolitical directions that could be taken. 10 years really isn't all that long for truly revolutionary ideas to be accepted as valid, but is easily long enough for things to diverge markedly from OTL.

Well, it's time to engage the braincells in something more work-related, but it was a buzz anyhow, cheers

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HAVOCK mutters...

Posted January 18, 2010
I can see the UK putting their hand up for help and trying to rally the colonies, only to be told to shove it up their collective arse. Well, maybe not that, but certainly I would see a pound of cash or blood being coughed up by the Poms for assistance.

As for Europe, well with Russian airborne units in France, how about a reversal of the BERLIN AIRLIFT..I foresee Allied units attempting to surround the RUSSIAN Airborne units and denying them resupply. Right here in this setting we have a high chance for a clash. Kolhammer will not brook any shit from Russia, nor will Churchill for that matter and I cannot See Josef sitting on his hands quietly. His reaction will be “ screw’em”..but he needs to cross the German barrier of bio weapons. That might be a thrust on a narrow front, massive air support as well. So we have a focused fight that takes place in Europe. The spear head will be defeated and the occupying Russian forces 9 Airborne), will surrender and be transported back to Russian Lines.

Josef sues for peace with the Allies and explains it all as a rather large misunderstanding. This need only take place over a week or two, but it will be an intense engagement.

Stalin only stops the offensive to consolidate his existing gains and re constitute his now exhausted field armies on the eastern front.

Moulded into the defence of the ( NATO) type alliance are the Germans. Immediately adopting the Bundeswher values and operational structure.

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damian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Von Neumann is just as important a figure, and just as much a character really, as Einstein.

Jane, the attack on Stalingrad was not so much of a problem as the failure to abandon it after the Soviet counterattack led to an encirclement and siege. A successful breakout could have lead to a regroup behind the Don and potentially the destruction of over half the Soviet forces.

Of course, we don't know what would have happened if Paulus had done as Hitler ordered, and fought to the last man. And that's ust in OTL.

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Scott has opinions thus...

Posted January 18, 2010
The Soviets will not copy China's model and produce cheap stuff for export to the west.

China's transformation took time, the old guard neded to die out or retire. Add to this the tech toys western consumers will want will only be produced by companies associated with the zone. Many people describe Soviet produced goods as bulky and poorly made just look at the Lada and Travant both cars you almost needed to be a mechanic to keep going.

As a eastern european I new said under the Soviet system "we pretended to work, they pretended to pay us and we both pretended the system worked!"

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Chaz is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18, 2010
Life in the UK would be pretty miserable in the 50's as the country would have been on a constant war footing since 1940.

The nation would be still be semi-mobilised with a full mobilisation plan in the offing if Stalin moved forward.

And lets look at Josef Illich shall we? he's a border line pyschotic with definite signs of paranoia. He cares not a whit about the people just his powerbase.If he can't strike west (and why would he?) then he needs to go south esp towards the gulf as he would want to get at the oil that everyone knows is there.

So I'd say he'd build up forces to fully secure Iraq and Persia. Allied forces in theatre would have a hard time fighting a numerically superior enemy. I doubt Kohlhammer would nuke Russia for moving into the ME.

At least the new gulags would be nice a warm...

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Bangar asserts...

Posted January 18, 2010
Chaz, so they'd offer a choice of gulag? Too hot or too cold?

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Scott would have you know...

Posted January 18, 2010
When the Berlin wall came down East Germans crossed in to the west of the city. I remember a journalist commenting on the looks on peoples faces when they saw some of the shops. Soviet propaganda always claimed that the standard of living in the west was lower than in the Soviet Union. In this timeline this claim can be easily overrun. Furthermore the level of terror needed to keep subject countries in line will make for a nice underground movement.

Havock, England will be a verry dark place to live always fearing the Soviet hammer. Expect a larger number of English imigrants moving to South Africa and Australia.

Britain, the giant airbase sounds about right. Britain moved to the Social Democratic model to counter the alure of the Soviet Union. With the historical record any chance of any party running on a Social Democratic platform is slim.

Question, what happens in Germany?

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damian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
Scot - you're pesisting with this. The parties that come under the general heading "Social Democrat" are the labour-oriented parties that grew up in the 19th century, and are not some "new branding" of "socialism". Forget about that stuff, it's nonsense.

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Sweet Jane Says ducks in to say...

Posted January 18, 2010
Einstein is not going to assist anyone in progressing his work when he sees the confusion and death it causes. In fact, he's more likely to try and undo anything his theories propagated. He's likely to be a candidate for assassination.

The Japanese were working on atomic weaponry at a site in Korea during WWII. They would feel motivated to continue the work at a quicker pace.

J.

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Chaz would have you know...

Posted January 18, 2010
bangar, yes as a first offence you get to woprk in a gulag near Basra helping pump oil.

get caught by the NKVD twice and you're for the saltmines in Siberia.

Scott. Labour won the '45 election because the British people believed that Labour would be better able to rebuild the country. That the war against germany has been effectively replaced by a probable war agaisnt the Soviet Union the british populations view point might well be different as Churchill was seen as a true war PM. However because of the need to keep the UK on almost a full war footing it would be in Churchills interests to adobt certain Labour policies esp as he would know why he lost the election in OTL

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HAVOCK swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18, 2010
One of the things both Britain and the US will be mindful of is density of units and equipment in the UK, given the threat of nuclear weapons. This may abate, dependant on just how the whole situation in France pans out, certainly the build up would continue.

I have a feeling, that to a certain degree elements of the population would be temporarily sent OS and that means we would take some as well. Manufacturing will still need to continue in England however.

Long range interceptors will come to the fore as with the long range bomber.

Long range Sam Units, they will strive to make missiles that can utilise the Tridents capabilities. I also wonder just how much pressure will be put on OZ by England to cut loose the HAVOCK!..jesus that name rocks. Anyways. I figure that the counter argument will be its ability to deny vast areas of ocean to bad guys..eg the INDIAN ocean and ME. That boat will tie up a disproportionate amount of resources from the opposing side. That’s the beauty of subs.

I also wonder if the OZ gummite would recognise this and start construction on perhaps the Oberon class with some mods as well.

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18, 2010
Hav - When those Sov airborne units first get into France its earlier on in the piece and Kolhammer isn't yet the Big Cheese in the U.S., Roosevelt is, so Kolhammer wouldn't have the say in how the Aliies would react to Sov units cutting up France. I'd assume that Stalin would have immediately gone for a temporary stalemate while he builds more nukes, knowing that at the time of Berlin getting vapourised the U.S. has a stockpile of the things. The whole premise depends on whether Roosevelt, egged on By Churchill, challenges the Sovs in France and Italy.

Then fast forward to the Hammer as Prez.

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Scott reckons...

Posted January 18, 2010
Damian, politics is as much about perceptions as facts. How many times have you seen a politician argue something that is factually either wrong or dubious? A political party following the emergence will take information from fleetnet and spin it for all it’s worth.

You name the polocy it will be fair game. The labour parties and the union movement won’t be able to disassociate themselves fast enough.

Quite right about Churchill

learning from his mistakes.

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