The Dullsvillain

Slinging mud at the media of Dullsville (aka Perth, Western Australia)

Extended trading hours don’t affect me – I just don’t like it: John Cummings

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I want to know exactly how shops closing at 6 o’clock be considered a good thing in this place. So why not go straight to the mouthpiece of the anti late shopping movement, IGA chairman John Cummmings.

He starts with an interesting claim that 96% of stores already can open but don’t.

Is this true? If so, I have never heard Dullsville so perfectly summed up in one statistic! Anyway, on this base, he believes that extend the trading hours will only mean Coles and Woolworths to open longer hours.

And how about the “why not?”

The argument that extended shopping will be forcing small, local-owned business to close is an argument I thought to have a strong effect on the public. I think many people could sympathize this – despite the public’s clearly demonstrate preference for chain stores (maybe something about the importance of signs?)

Anyway, I was fully expected that at least a real-world reason will be the base of the IGA argument.

But no, Mr Cummings does not make this claim – turns out he’s just “philosophically” against late shopping! And yet, as you can see in the interview below, he has no idea about the philosophy behind the regulation that he philosophically agree with. From now on, there is a word, for the philosophy Mr Cummings could not think of:

Behold! Philosophy of Dullsvillianism…

Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Zhu Hongbing

August 21, 2009 at 4:20 pm

Dullsville wins again, Pt. II

with one comment

Sigh. We’ve only been chronicling Dullsville for a short 3 months here at The Dullsvillain, and in that time we’ve seen a thick, gray coat of paint applied to the two cornerstones of Perth dullness: daylight saving and, now, extended shopping hours.

The extended shopping hours “debate” is in one way closely analogous to the stateside argument about public health care. In America, there’s a fierce debate about whether the government should provide basic health care to its citizens.  In Perth, there’s a fierce debate about whether shops should be allowed to open past 5pm.  In the rest of the civilised world, they’re laughing at both of us.

There’s a few prominent villains who’ve emerged from this debacle.  First and foremost, of course, the spineless WA Labor party, who went to the last election touting extended shopping hours. No more. Nuts to all of the people who voted for them on that basis, they’ve conducted straw polls at supermarkets and discovered that there’s a real groundswell of self-interested, reactionary fucks in the Perth suburbs (per Eric Ripper):

We went out there, we spoke to people and we found small businesses almost universally opposed to it (extended trading hours), and we found only lukewarm support, at best 50 per cent among customers.

Of course, if they’d turned up to a few offices or factories, the results might have been different. But I don’t want to say too much about public support or opposition for the concept. As much as Labor and the interest groups are pushing the 2005 referendum defeat as a good basis for their opposition, anyone who knows anything about referendums knows they’re worth shit.  The Federal government has held 44 referendums and 36 have ended in “No” votes. That’s because people vote no – people who don’t give a shit, people who don’t trust politicians, undecided people, people pissed off they’ve been forced to vote, old people. Naysayers.

John Howard knew instinctively that referendums are a highly effective way to kill progress, and happily watched the chances for an Australian Republic burn.

The other big villain is Independent Grocers Association president John Cummings:

I don’t think Coles, Woolworths or the Chamber of Commerce and Industry will ever pack up and go home and interestingly with all of the surveys that they have done that supposedly shows that people want change, it’s strange that they’ve never actually called for a referendum.

The reason they’ve never called for another referendum is because they know it would be lost.

Yes, because the game is rigged, and you know it, Cummings.  Worse:

It’s good that a party has gone out and found out what its constituents wants…

The change to 9pm was a proposal the consumers didn’t need and that retailers didn’t want.

The consumers don’t need it and the retailers don’t want it, right?  On that logic, why does the government even bother to regulate and police shopping hours? If we deregulate we’ll save precious taxpayer dollars and, on Cummings’ logic, the shops still won’t open. Everyone wins.

Especially Cummings, who owns three IGAs. That’s right. The same bloke who is having public conniptions about the possibility of extended shopping hours and Coles and Woolworths’ duopoly status earns a mint by exploiting one of the best monopolist scams in WA by opening his IGAs into the night, long after his competitors are forced to close. Credibility FAIL. But really, he’s the perfect public face of the doggedly self-interested Independent Grocers Association, who actually profit from the pain of consumers. Say what you will about Monarchists, but at least they don’t have a profit motive behind their backward ideology.

John Cummings, you, sir, are a DullsVillain:


Written by Dick

August 20, 2009 at 12:03 am

An Open Letter to Channel Ten and the producers of “Before the Game”

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Dear Channel Ten and the producers of Before the Game,

Settling down in front of the TV for the Eagles last night, I tuned in to the best footy show on the box: Before the Game. Good job on that show! Unlike other footy shows, it isn’t self serious and doesn’t rely on fabricated controversy or inflated egos. It’s funny, and full of exuberance for AFL footy. Last night’s 30 minute episode was no exception. Kevin Rudd receiving “Tool of the Week” for handballing like a girl and calling himself “The Ruddster” was a highlight.

Just one thing. At the end of the show, as the credits rolled, host Andrew Maher yelled out the result of the Eagles v North Melbourne match, which had just finished at Subiaco. Great! Everyone loves live results. Everyone, that is, except for a few hundred thousand Perth viewers, who were waiting for the delayed telecast of the match and had scrupulously avoided finding out the score in order to keep it interesting.

I was one of those Perth viewers. Like so many other Eagles’ supporters, I naively enjoyed last night’s Before the Game with my glass of Chardonnay and looked forward to another promising performance from the Eagles’ youngsters. That is, before Maher exploded my bubble by shouting “West Coast by 38 points over North Melbourne” seconds before the telecast started. I can only liken the psychological impact of Maher’s betrayal to the traumatic realisation, at the tender age of 5, that there was no Father Christmas. I felt robbed, deceived, and powerless.

So thanks for killing the potential for any excitement in what turned out to be a thoroughly boring match.

Look, I don’t have a PhD in live television. But I do remember an old trick Channel 7 used to great effect.  It went something like: “If you don’t want to know the scores, look away now”. It was crude – but undeniably effective. Maybe you guys have a more sophisticated way to prevent such monumental cock ups. I don’t know. All I know is that Father Christmas isn’t visiting on December 25, or ever again.

Accordingly, I write to implore that Maher and the autocue operator responsible for this outrage be dubbed the round 21 Tools of the Week.

I look forward to your reply.



Patti Gone!

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What! Patti Chong is calling it quits over at The Verdict, her blog at WA Today. For realsies!

i'm out

In true Chongstyle, her farewell post is a self indulgent essay packed with swipes at her detractors.

She starts off by quoting at length a sycophantic email from… some Notre Dame law student called Clarence?

…I am a university student at the University of Notre Dame in Fremantle. Throughout my course, I have noticed many issues in our legal and political system, which seems quite unjust and rigid…

I would just like to say that the things you have achieved and have fought for are indeed amazing. You have inspired me to tackle situations where the legislation appears unjust. As a Notre Dame law student, social justice has always been a common theme throughout my time at university. It may not count for much but I just want to congratulate you on your philanthropy and kind-heartedness throughout the legal and social realm (especially on Nova radio!). It may not seem like it, but you are indeed an inspiration to many law students.

Blerg. Give it a rest, “Clarence Paul”. There’s less humiliating ways to find a job. Honest.

Of course, Patti’s extended whinge about her meanie-pants critics is the real gold:

While I did not expect all readers to agree with my views or support the issues which are most passionate to me, I did not expect the vitriol and vilification from some of my detractors.

Issues can be passionate now? She goes on:

Some of the attacks on me personally, remarks about my children and my estranged husband were uncalled for, unjustified and bordered on the extreme.

To clarify, she is talking about the “estranged husband” who put an innocent man in jail for 11 years, never faced disciplinary proceedings, and got paid a bonus $276,000 $381,000 for it.

While we’re on the subject of “bordering on the extreme”:

In my years of prosecuting some of the more notorious and not so notorious criminal elements of our community, they seem to be more balanced and displayed more redeeming features than some of the people who have posted comments.

I bet this one is for Skink, who’s been irritating Patti like a bad case of the crabs for yonks now. But, that aside, Lots Of Love for this! Internet commentors are the worst! They have less redeeming features than the notorious criminal elements of our community. You know, like people who abuse children.

It’s not all just a big whinge, though. Patti has some well-worn advice for the haters:

My beloved mother used to tell me that if we have nothing positive to say about anybody or anything, then silence is golden.

And from mixed metaphors to Shakespeare:

If I am able to inspire just one person or change something positively by my pieces, then I suppose it has been worthwhile to have suffered the slings and arrows.

That’s a motiviational poster, right there:


Ok, I admit that I’m going to miss Patti. I mean, what am I going to write about every Thursday now? Surely there’s a limit to the play we can get from pissing off The Dwarf?

Written by Dick

August 13, 2009 at 10:47 pm

Murder on the dance floor

with 6 comments

dance floor murder

It was about time this happened. I’m referring to PerthNow’s tenously linked pommy bashing headline that read:

‘Stabbings injure three at English-themed pubs’

I’m not endorsing that headline. I could have done without it, we all could have. But i’m not not-endorsing the neck-stabbing at the Elephant & Wheelbarrow. How could you when the whole dance floor looks like this:

Pack'it o' crisps an' a pint of cock, govnor

Pack'it o' crisps an' a pint of cock, govnor

Thats right. The Elephant & Wheelbarrow’s dance floor turns into a (English-themed) Greek bath house after 11p.m. The place is crawling with desperate middle aged men on too much viagra.

I know this because I frequent this shit-hole regularly. It cages the only women I seem to get these days.

The insinuation that those two pubs being English-themed had anything to do with the two stabbings is a load of crock. This is what Perthnow does best. Feeding off past prejudices that they’ve pumped up in their dirty loins. In this case it’s pub violence in England and rowdy English tourists, especially the barmy army. I know there’s no direct mention of it, so you’re more than welcome to disagree, but we all know whats going on here.

Putting two entirely seperate incidents together and making a shit-burger of a news story is what we’ve got on our hands here.

But hey, the Ashes is on and it’s pommy bashing season!

Who could resist that?

By the way, police are looking for a white male between the age 0f 30-65, balding & greying hair, portly build and he was wearing a beige sports jacket.

Congratulations, you’ve just described 90% of the clientele of the Elephant & Wheelbarrow.

stabbin' 2

Written by Uncle Mac

August 10, 2009 at 7:10 pm

UFOs in Perth!

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A while back I wrote about The Sunday Times’ credulous reporting on the police use of a psychic in the Rayney murder investigation. But that ain’t shit compared to this story, which appeared on PerthNow yesterday:

PerthNow reader photographs mystery lights over Perth Hills

Well did it?

No author is identified. Apparently, The Sunday Times couldn’t find a journalist with the appropriate level of self respect (none) to put their name to this story. But for mine it has Narelle Towie written all over it.

Unsurprisingly (surprisingly?) The Sunday Times itself didn’t run the story today. Reporting worthy of the Weekly World News is good enough for their interweb readers, but not good enough for print, I guess.

Weekly World News

The Weekly World News. This newspaper knows it's a joke.

Also, tipsters beware! Diplayed prominently on the front page:


By contrast, tucked away in the story:

The photographer stresses that he did not believe he had photographed a UFO, but has no explanation for the coloured lights which appeared on the digital images. [My emphasis]

Well played, PerthNow. Well played.

Written by Dick

August 9, 2009 at 4:47 pm

The other John Hughes

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You know you’re from Dullsville if, when you heard that John Hughes died, you wondered whether you’d still be subjected to these:

Apparently, the bloke that directed Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Home Alone was also called John Hughes. Perth’s John Hughes is, as far as the evidence suggests, still alive and going strong (if looking a little weathered, and struggling to form his traditional emphasis-fist when he says “absolutely“):

Is it true that John Hughes will continue to subject us to his egomaniacal ads? Absolutely.

Written by Dick

August 8, 2009 at 5:08 pm