This week’s newsybits (The Glass House 3/5/06)


The parents of Private Jake Kovco were furious when their son’s body was delivered to Melbourne Airport, only to turn out to be the body of an unidentified Bosnian. Mr and Mrs Unidentified Bosnian are also said to be quite upset.

Private Kovco’s mother rang John Howard personally and according to Brendan Nelson, she told him what she thought of what had happened “in a polite Australian way”. Yeah, I’m sure she asked him over for a barbie and a couple of tinnies.

She responded in a typical Aussie way: they had a punch-up in the car park.

The Government is also changing their story about what exactly happened to Private Kovco. Turns out he wasn’t cleaning his loaded gun after all; according to Nelson he was “doing something other than handling his firearm and in the process of fiddling about with the other equipment he had, it would appear that in some way he’s knocked his gun and it’s discharged.” Thanks, Brendan, that’s really cleared that up: it was death by something-or-other.

Mr Nelson’s initial story was that Kovco had shot himself, then the story was changed. Turns out he shot an unidentified Bosnian…

Mr Nelson’s initial story was that Kovco had shot himself, then the story was changed to something even vaguer. Soon, he won’t have been shot at all…

Kovco’s mother accused the government of a cover-up “because they want more boys to go over there” and didn’t want to spoil Australia’s casualty-free record. In fact they were hoping to keep him alive, Weekend at Bernie’s style.

“That’s not my son – my son was alive!”

“That’s not my son – Jake didn’t have that big hole in his head!”

Military mix-ups are not that uncommon, of course; after all, we invaded Afghanistan and Iraq when the 911 bombers were all Saudis – and we caught Saddam when we were trying to catch Osama.

There was a mix-up between coffins, even though one of the coffins was draped with a massive Australian flag… “Oh, this one? Must be going to Bosnia – those Aussies have got plenty of Australian flags already!”


We’re getting a Smart Card! John Howard said that it was not some sort of Trojan Horse ID card. No. Horses don’t need one, and Trojans don’t need one. It’s more of an Australian Human ID card.

You’re going to need the Smart Card to get any sort of government benefit, but it won’t be compulsory. People who don’t want to deal with any government agencies will be issued with a Dumb Card.

It’s not an Identity card, it’s a Smart card… that just happens to carry all the details of your identity. And isn’t actually all that smart.

They’re saying it’ll cost around a billion dollars to implement the Smart Cards – that’s around $100 per card. Gee, I’d hate to see how much the Dumb Cards cost.

So as long as you’re homeless, childless and never see the doctor, you can keep the details of your home, family and medical history private.

The new card will replace 17 different cards. Sure it might infringe on your privacy, but isn’t it more important to free up that valuable wallet space?


Medibank Private’s being privatised. From now on it’s going to be called Medibank Private Private / Medibank Public / Medibank Elite.

The government aren’t promising that premiums will fall – but they’re not promising that they’ll spiral hopelessly out of the reach of ordinary people, either…


Kim Beazley has blamed his lousy opinion poll rating on his aggressive stance towards the government’s policies. To restore his popularity, he’s going to have to go back to mindlessly aping the government’s polices.


Elton John’s new musical to a critical savaging, the third Broadway musical about vampires to bomb in four years. I guess people just don’t go for the “singing undead” schtick anymore.

Elton’s musical is about gay vampires, or what he likes to call “campervamps”.

Elton was hoping it would make a killing… or at least make some money.


To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Port Arthur massacre, they held a service, ending with a 35 gun salute… Pretty tasteless, really.


European scientists have concluded there is no evidence that astrology works. Just like their horoscope said they would.

The scientists know that astrology is rubbish – it was written in their tea-leaves.

It turns out that there’s no link between personality, intelligence and birth dates. Although they did find that Virgos do cop the most shit in high school.

But of course the scientists concluded astrology doesn’t work: they’re all Aquarians.

“Science only deals with solid facts. Now let me get back to my multidimensional quarks.”

Not only is astrology rubbish, but you’re not going to meet a tall, dark stranger either.

Tall, dark strangers are annoyed. Now they’ll never meet anyone!


Porsche have brought out their new car, the 911. Unfortunately it keeps crashing into buildings…

Can you believe they thought it was a good idea to name a car the 911? I guess 666 was already taken….


The government is thinking of introducing a citizenship test to ensure that migrants speak a functional level of English and understand Australian values. So as you’re fleeing that brutal dictatorship, make sure you grab a Sudanese-to-English dictionary to swot up on the way over…

Migrants will need a functional level of English. Unlike people born here.

There’ll be an English test: speak it too good, and youse can just get farked.

They’ll need a general understanding of Australian values and history. Because it’s important for immigrants to know about our failed explorers, our cop-killing bushrangers and our genocidal land-grabs. It’ll make them proud to be from somewhere else!

They’ll need a good understanding of Australian values to figure out why they’re behind razor wire…


The Federal Court has thrown out a case that Cadbury brought against rival Darryl Lea for using the colour purple. The verdict is also a big relief for Prince, Grimace and The Purple People Eater.


Dick Warburton, the head of Caltex – profit $414 million – says “none of us likes the pain of these oil prices. You know much it costs to fill nine Mercedes?”

“We’d love to have lower oil prices, but we’re at the mercy of global events beyond our control. Besides, we really like being rich.”


Tom Cruise’s new daughter is named Suri, which is Hebrew for “get out of here”. Names rejected include: Susie Cruise, P&O Cruise and WeNeedASecondHoneymoonWhyDontWeGoForANiceRomantic Cruise.

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes have named their new daughter Suri. Meanwhile, global warming continues unabated.

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