Saturday, 3 December 2016

"Liar!" "Spy!" "Nazi!" "Communist!"

The jinxed Austrian Presidential Election will, if all goes according to plan, finally reach an end tomorrow Sunday.

Austria will in banana republic fashion undergo the scrutiny of election observers.

The candidates, Herr Hofer and Herr van der Bellen, are from opposite ends of the political spectrum.

It is no exaggeration to say they hate each other.

In yesterday's edition of Österreich political commentator Wolfgang Fellner said that the word "liar" was used 100 times by the candidates during the final TV duel.

These "statesmen", said Fellner, "are argumentative kindergarten chickens".

For my money the real trouble started much earlier. In April the writing was on the chicken coup wall.

Due to Germany's open door immigration policy and Austria's traditional political chicanery, the candidates from the two centre parties failed to stay in the race and the country was suddenly polarized.

Bookmakers have more at stake than erratic pollsters. Here are the latest returns to 1:00 euro:

Norbert Hofer  (FPÖ) -  1.50  euro.

Claim to fame:  young free-thinking sportsman injured in para-gliding accident.

Alexander van der Bellen (Independent) -  2.40 euro.

Claim to fame: elderly ex-Green Party leader. Unshaven chain smoking professor.

In Italy too, much is at stake tomorrow. We live in interesting times. The world is watching.

The EU takes a deep breath and waits.

The real world always intrudes and news of a family six and their dog being shot to death in their Lower Austrian home by a crazed family member - a gunwoman - is dominating the front pages.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Michelangelo's God in the Sistine Chapel

An ominous crack in the Vatican plaster

God about his business in the Sistine Chapel 

Friday, 18 November 2016

A Viennese Grave and a Google Doodle

I only discovered that Hollywood actress Hedy Lammar was an important inventor when I went to pay my respects at her so-called honorary grave in Vienna's Zentral Friedhof a couple of weeks ago.

There was a song and dance in the media when her ashes were returned to Austria from America because the authorities in Austria were refusing to allow the ashes to be scattered in the Vienna Woods.

There was little or nothing in the local media about Hedy Lammar being an important inventor.

I like to think that somebody attended to her final wish.

Here is a photo I took of the so-called honorary grave. It shows the workings of Hedy Lammar's invention which is something called 'Spread Spectrum Technology'. Used in WWII against the Nazis and later during the Cuban Missile Crisis, SST today resides in your Bluetooth.

Does anyone reside under these baubles? That is another question.

More about Hedy Lammar and her amazing invention via the link in the post below.

Hedy Lammar - Inventor

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Cows Awaiting Rescue after NZ Quake.

We see so many terrible images these days of war and the consequences of war, and also of natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, and their consequences, some of which are almost unimaginable, that a sign of hope is always welcome. 

The above photo, printed in my local newspaper, was taken from a helicopter surveying a rural area after the recent 7.8 earthquake in New Zealand. 

I was pleased to read that the farmer was able to rescue all three cows.