Category Archives: News

news as it is happening-ish

The calculator has moved to its permanent home on and is available here.

The only calculator that matters.

So simple and easy to use.

All your deductions at the stroke of a thumb.

Number crunching coder Mike (Karl is tragically unavailable on his favourite day of the year) will be live updating the calc throughout the afternoon/evening.


A Canberra couple have vowed to get a divorce, ending their “sacred” 10-year union, if Australia allows same-sex couples to legally marry. Nick Jensen and his wife Sarah believe widening the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples threatens the sacred nature of the union and leaves the door open to polygamy. The Christian couple have been happily married for over a decade, have no intention of separating and hope to have more children. For all intents and purposes they have a healthy marriage.

They seem lovely.

Christian couple vow to divorce if same-sex marriage is legalised (the Age)

(H/T: Mark Geary)


Darren Conlon asks:

The Australian definition of marriage is for Parliament to decide and a referendum is not required. The current thinking is that same-sex marriage is close to passing and becoming law if it were to be brought before Parliament.

However, the Australian press cannot seem to accept that the majority of Irish people who chose to record their opinion on same-sex marriage voted ‘Yes’. The latest argument is that because 40% of the population chose to not vote then claims of a resounding ‘Yes’ vote are invalid. Rather, 72% of the population did not vote ‘Yes’.

In keeping with this thinking, the inference is that same-sex marriage should be decided by a referendum in Australia because voting is mandatory and therefore a ‘Yes’ vote from a vocal minority would carry less weight. The risk of same-sex marriage resulting from politicians ´bending knee’ to a populist and vocal minority would be neutered.

Two problems with this thinking that I think remain unanswered:

1. This Utilitarian model is, as expected, flawed; because a portion of society will remain very unhappy if same-sex marriage does not pass. It clearly breaches 3 of the 4 the bioethical principles being justice, beneficence and non-maleficence. It also impinges on the 4th, autonomy.

2. The fact that voting is mandatory in Australia. In a true democracy members can choose to participate, or not participate. Forcing persons with no real opinion to make a choice by its very nature is undemocratic. Again a breach of autonomy.

Any thoughts?

Previously: How Low Can Australia Go?

(Image via Star Observer)

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Independent candidate and erstwhile Jim Wells cheerleader Susan-Anne White invites uproar at the West Tyrone Decides debate at Omagh’s Strule Arts Centre on Tuesday.

The action starts around the 90 second mark.

Uproar over West Tyrone candidate’s ‘gay abuse’ comments (Ulster Herald)

Previously: Correctness Gone Mad

(Pic: Ryan McAleer)

(H/T: Nevan Riley)

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Graham Dwyer (top) and a statement released by his solicitors this evening

Graham Dwyer closed his eyes and shook his head slightly when verdict was delivered.

Sentencing and victim impact statements will be dealt with on 20 April.

The sentence for murder is mandatory life in prison.

Dwyer guilty of murdering Elaine O’Hara (RTE News)

Statement pic via Conor Gallagher

(H/T: Kevin Whitty, Spaghetti Hoop)

david_carr_shane_snow_spielDavid Carr (left) at the Spiel event in Dublin during last year’s web summit with tech entrepreneur Shane Snow

I am sorry to have to tell you that our wonderful, esteemed colleague David Carr died suddenly tonight after collapsing in the newsroom. A group of us were with his wife, Jill, and one of his daughters, at the hospital. His daughter Erin said he was special, and that he was.

He was the finest media reporter of his generation, a remarkable and funny man who was one of the leaders of our newsroom. He was our biggest champion, and his unending passion for journalism and for truth will be missed by his family at The Times, by his readers around the world, and by people who love journalism.

An email sent by Dean Baquet, editor at the New York Times, informing staff of the death of David Carr.

David Carr, Times Critic and Champion of Media, Dies at 58 (New York Times)

Previously: Turning Down Isis And Taking On The Man

The Daily Beast


Word of the day: kleptocracy (from the Greek κλέπτης – kleptēs, “thief” and κράτος – kratos, “power, rule).

He acknowledges that the Greek economy is still inefficient, inadequately competitive, hobbled by corruption. But he believes that only a brand new party like Syriza, even one on the left as it is, can be trusted to break up oligopolies and introduce more competition into product and labour markets. How so? Well it is because he and his Syriza colleagues are outsiders, untainted by connections to the wealthy tax-avoiding elite, lacking in connections to corporate vested interests. If Syriza is in power for a year, it too will become captured by the kleptocracy, he fears, so he wants his government to reform swiftly. His message therefore to Mrs Merkel is that he and she have more in common than she may recognise.

READ ON: Why Syriiza wants a five month cool off (Robert Peston in conversation with Greek Finance minister Yanis Voroufakis, BBC News)

(Pic: Getty)

(H/T: Timboktu Cedarlounge)