Flick Crit: Good the movie

Latest film review at Cinema Takes is Good: just another Third Reich movie

Germany’s Third Reich didn’t last its planned thousand years but there seems little doubt that they will be making movies like Good for that long. It’s certainly a winning genre at the Oscars and the box office.

The key word for this Nazi/Holocaust film is derivative.

If you missed The Reader or The Counterfeiter or classics such as Sophie’s Choice or Schindler’s List, then Good will be a fresh and rewarding experience.

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Kevin Rudd, oink, oink, oink…!

It should comes as no surprise, that, whenever the Liberal Party finds itself bereft of any tangible, credible forms of criticism of the Federal Labour Government or its policies or initiatives, they simply revert to their tired old tactic of personal abuse.

In yet another example of the depths the Liberal Party is prepared to resort to in order to bring Kevin Rudd into disrepute, Liberal Party frontbencher Peter Dutton has launched the most extraordinary personal attack on Kevin Rudd that perhaps we’ve seen since the last election.

Mr Dutton says Mr Rudd has earned the nickname “the pig of Australian politics” for his behaviour on a recent VIP flight.

Mr Dutton has told ABC2 News Breakfast that Australians are starting to get to know the real Mr Rudd.

“He’s been described lately as the Barry Humphries of politics; he’s up on top of those stairs hopping into the VIP flight overseas waving like Dame Edna Everage,” he said.

“Once he’s on board he turns into Barry Humphries, he turns into the pig of Australian politics; this is a bloke who we have only just scratched the surface on.

“The pig of Australian politics?” Isn’t that taking things just a bit too far? I mean really, what an extraordinary accusation and unwarranted personal assault.

Clearly, the Liberal party are rattled that Turnbull’s ratings continue to slide into oblivion, but to try and drag up the old RAAF incident – which didn’t affect Rudd’s ratings in the last newspoll one iota – simply smacks of desperation.

“he’s been described as the Pig of Australian Politics?”

By whom exactly? Joe Hockey…?

Melbourne and Water

This is an issue that I just don’t get. One side of the debate is expressed very well in this Youtube clip. The other side has been expressed variously by the Victorian Government as “there’s no point building a dam if there’s no water to fill it” (gippsland has flooded twice at massive cost since Bracks made that remark), and “please see our website to see our initiatives in securing Melbourne’s water”. Bugger all on website. We are transporting water from the already dry Goulburn Valley and building a desalination plant at massive monetary and environmental cost in South Gippsland. Can anyone who understands the issue defend the State Government’s action on this, or even the State Opposition’s seeming inaction. To me, the solution appears simple, but it wouldn’t be the first time that I found out that I didn’t fully understand the issues.

Alcopops Bill Takes Aim at Double Dissolution

In what could be described as a masterstroke of political tactics, the Federal Government is set to reintroduce its previously failed Alcopops Bill to Parliament.

The move will simultaneously paint the Opposition Leader, Malcolm Turnbull as an Obstructionist – a perception that is beginning to take shape in the public domain – as well as potentially bring on an early election if the Bill is once again knocked back.

The Australian reports that if the Liberal leader refuses to reverse his opposition to the $1.6 billion tax increase, Senate rejection of the bill could provide a constitutional trigger for a double dissolution of the parliament and a fresh election, depending on the nature of the bill and the timing involved.

While the Treasurer stressed that the Government was not planning an early election, his deliberate move to raise the possibility, combined with a savage attack on Mr Turnbull as obstructionist, heralded a marked shift in government tactics to paint the Opposition Leader as negative and out of touch.

As health groups applauded the Government’s push to revive its rejected tax increase, Mr Turnbull counter-attacked last night, saying the measure on so-called alcopops was a cynical tax grab and accusing Mr Swan of adopting the bullying tactics of a man unable to get his own way.

Family First senator Steve Fielding, whose vote was instrumental in sinking the first alcopops bill in March, said he would reject it again unless the Government agreed to ban alcohol advertising during television broadcasts of sport.

When the Senate rejects legislation twice with a three-month interval between each vote, the Government has the right to seek the Governor-General’s permission to dissolve parliament.

Asked about this yesterday, Mr Swan said: “Malcolm Turnbull might load the gun, but we certainly have no intention of firing it. What we want to do is put our legislation up into the Senate and have it passed.”

Mr Swan said Mr Turnbull had opposed a string of government initiatives, including the alcopops tax, a national broadband network, two economic stimulus packages (including the biggest school modernisation program in Australian history and cash payments to pensioners and carers) and new spending on hospitals.

The other side just want to be opportunistic and play politics with a serious measure that deals with a serious public health problem,” Mr Swan said.

“Mr Turnbull and the Liberals have been negative, they’ve been obstructionist.”

Mr Turnbull told The Australian last night he did not necessarily accept that the alcopops bill could be an election trigger, because the Constitution was very complex.

But he said he had no intention of supporting the bill and rejected the claim that he was being obstructionist. “This is what every bully says when he can’t get his own way,” Mr Turnbull said.

It will be interesting to see how this pans out and whether Fielding will repeat his last performance…

Nothing has changed at Gitmo

And we have another story that nothing has changed at Gitmo since Obama took office.

A DETAINEE at the US prison at Guantanamo Bay said he was beaten almost daily and that nothing has changed since Barack Obama took over as US president, it was reported today.

The Obama administration must start to meet their rhetoric with actions.

And in other news, the CIA has formally started to close it “black sites” where contractors where used to conduct the interrogations of detainees.

The Central Intelligence Agency announced on Thursday that it will no longer use contractors to conduct interrogations, and that it is decommissioning the secret overseas sites where for years it held high-level Al Qaeda prisoners.

And finally there are reports that the Spanish prosecutors are going ahead with the charges against Alberto Gonzales and five other Bush administration associates.

Scott Horton has reported that “Spanish prosecutors have decided to press forward with a criminal investigation targeting former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and five top associates over their role in the torture of five Spanish citizens held at Guantánamo.” The others targeted are John Yoo, Jay Bybee, David Addington, Doug Feith and William Haynes.

As we have said in the past, the US signed the treaties under which these charges are proposed and from what I have been reading and have heard, this could force the US into either bringing proceedings against the Bush administration officials who approved the “enhanced interrogation” techniques or running the risk of extradition requests being made for those who are accused by the Spanish prosecutors.