May 14th, 2003


Federal Budget

Last night the treasurer Peter Costello brought down the new budget. As usual those who can least afford to pay get it in the neck, again. Education for the rich, of course, but everyone else has to incur a debt. Oh, the debt will be capped to just 3%. So when I get a job I'll add that 3% to the 30% income tax and 1.5% medicare tax I'll be paying.

And our generous Treasurer has us tax cuts that amount to $4 per week for everyone earning less than $60k. What really gives me the tom-tits is that the Conservative bastards who are doing this got their university education when it was FREE for everyone.

I spoke to the bloke I might be getting a job with. He asked me what sort of salary I'd be looking for. "Oh, I'll not go crazy!" I said. "I think I'd be worth $35k to $40k a year."

There was a long silence. "We pay our top MSCE tech $35k" he said.

I think I priced myself out of a job. I mentioned I'd take part time work if they can't place me full time.

No wonder 90% of Australia's computer industry is concentrated in Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney. A MSCE in Sydney could ask $50k easily get it. There are many advantage in living away from a bloody big city, but they are not worth a $15k pay cut. Looks like I'll have to move if I want to pay off this debt.

Fearless prediction for next year's budget: those who can least afford to pay get it in the neck, again.
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Here's a statement you probably won't hear every day: Echidna spit is really, really slimy.

Rexie ate 86 grams of solid food today. There would have been more but Rexie stuck both front feet into the mush and went "Feet in something! Must dig!" and half her food ended up on the mat. I scooped it up and thought I'd put a blockage across the opening of the dish, so I grabbed the top and let Rexie stick her nose through the gap to lick up the food.

After 10 minutes of this she put both her front feet on my hand and pushed in. Isn't that cute, I thought.

Rexie thought: "Something in the way! Must dig!" and bloody near dislocated my little finger.


It took an hour but she slurped down 86 grams. She was still licking the dish clean when I put her away, but puggles will eat them selves to death, literally. We'll have a go at 100 grams in 2 days, and maybe she'll start to put on weight.

Must rush. A lady called about an echidna in her garden.

Later: he has a bad tick infestation. I've just applied a solution of pyrhethrum-based tick&flea shampoo, and will let him go tomorrow.
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    happy happy