I remember the night before the election in 2000. I had been working in St. Louis on the Bush campaign. We were told that Bush was spending his last night before the election in Houston so that is where we went. Since Bush ended up elsewhere, a member of our group who happened to be the promoter of a WWF event got us ringside seats. Vince McMahon gave a speech to encourage people to get out and vote as part of the WWF campaign. I looked around the crowd and was a little suspicious as to their knowledge of what the election was about or if they even knew who was running. I thought it might be better for McMahon to suggest they spend a little time educating themselves about being on this planet before electing the most important person on the planet.
It is hard for me believe that the Aussies do not have plenty of their own space cadets or people happily living in their own little world or people who just don’t like the system. We saw tons of them walking down Brunswick Street in Melbourne. To force them to show up to the polls dishonors the system more than having free elections where people can stay at home.
We were in Melbourne for Mothers’ Day – a grand celebration of family like in the States. The difference is they call it Mum’s Day or Mummy’s Day. I tried to get a good answer what they call those things in the Egyptian tombs, but could not get a straight answer.
For those of you who think the States have gone overboard on some ideas, come to Australia and see the future. The Aussies have raised cigarette taxes so that a pack costs $16(USD) now and they are running commercials that can just turn your stomach about the illnesses caused by smoking. As one who has never smoked I find this whole campaign quite overboard. PM Kevin Rudd is behind the campaign and the tax raise so one wonders if he will lecture Obama on his habit.
But they have their other peccadilloes. They have $180 tickets for parking meter violations. We are not talking moving violation. Then they have their own left-leaning government headed by Kevin Rudd. He feels a need to fiddle with everything to make things “better” for the middle class. So what does he do -- proposes a major tax overhaul. Of course, he proceeds to soak the industry that has kept them from the worldwide slowdown – the mining industry. He wants to suck the wind out that industry by adding billions of dollars in taxes to pay for his social programs. Sound familiar?
As I said, it is an ever shrinking world.
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