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The biggest abandoned city you’ve never heard of

Written By kom limapulan on Kamis, 31 Juli 2014 | 14.05

Construction of the city made use of the beautifully coloured local volcanic basalt. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

FOUNDED more than 1600 years ago, the ancient city of Ani was once one of the world's greatest metropolises. Today it sits in crumbling ruins, its former glory a distant memory.

Sitting deep in eastern Turkey, thousands of kilometres from bustling Istanbul, Ani lay on several trade routes and grew to become a walled city of more than 100,000 residents by the 11th century.

The ruins sit dramatically against the plateaus of inland Turkey. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

Explore the incredible ruins of one of the world's greatest cities. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

At its peak, Ani was a city of opulence, magnificence and architectural wonder. It was the citadel, former capital and heart of the great Armenian empire.

Known as the city of 1000 churches, its religious buildings, palaces and fortifications were among the most technically and artistically advanced structures in the world.

All of its buildings were constructed using local volcanic basalt that was easily carved and came in a variety of vibrant colours from creamy yellow, to rose-red to jet black.

The Cathedral of Ani. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

In the centuries that followed its peak, Ani and its surrounding region were conquered hundreds of times by Byzantine emperors, Ottoman Turks, Armenians, nomadic Kurds, Georgians, and Russians.

By the 1300s the city was in steep decline and completely abandoned by the 1700s.

Largely forgotten for over 700 years, its crumbling ruins were the victim of looters and vandals, Turks who tried to eliminate Armenian history from the area and poorly managed archaeological digs.

Forgotten buildings are overgrown by vegetation. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

Inside one of the restored churches. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Today Ani sits on the border of Turkey and Armenia, whose diplomatic relations have been frosty at the best of times. However it remains a historically important site where you can see a still-standing 1000-year-old mosque. The Cathedral and its domed basilica represent the city's progressive architecture and the Church of the Holy Redeemer that was built in 1035 remained largely intact until 1955.

Here are the incredible photographs from travel blog Yomadic showing the beautiful ruins of one of the world's greatest cities.

Eerie yet incredibly beautiful, the ruins of Ani. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The abandoned building showcase incredible architecture of the time. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The abandoned city walls and cathedral domes. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The crumbling Cathedral in the city of churches. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Abandoned bridge sits on the border of Turkey and Armenia. Once, it formed part of the "Silk Road". Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Its city walls were designed to keep armies out. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Efforts at preservation are occurring but funds are low. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied


14.05 | 0 komentar | Read More

Does he have a killer secret?

Bronwynne Richardson was kidnapped, raped, murdered and dumped in the Murray River Source: News Limited

THE man charged over the 1973 kidnap, rape and murder of Albury teenager Bronwynne Richardson has arrived in Sydney to face court after being extradited from South Australia.

Colin Michael Newey arrived in Sydney this afternoon after being arrested by detectives from NSW's Unsolved Homicide Squad.

Colin Michael Newey arrives at Sydney Airport this afternoon flanked by NSW cold case detectives. Picture: Mark Evans Source: News Corp Australia

The 61-year-old was unshaven with a long white beard and showed little emotion as he was escorted by detectives through Sydney Airport, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Ms Richardson, 17, was murdered on October 12, 1973 before being dumped in the Murray River.

Accused killer Colin Michael Newey walks through Sydney Airport with two NSW cold case detectives . Picture: Mark Evans Source: News Corp Australia

Her body was recovered from a lagoon running off the river two days later. Police believe she was dragged into a vehicle and sexually assaulted before being strangled and drowned.

Bronwynne Richardson was abducted, raped, strangled and drowned near Albury in 1973 Source: News Limited

Detectives from the NSW Unsolved Homicide Squad arrested Newey in the South Australian town of Murray Bridge just before 10am yesterday.

Newey made a brief appearance at Murray Bridge Magistrates Court, where an extradition order was served, before being kept overnight at Adelaide Watch House.

Bronwynne Richardson's older sister Jannette Swinton (right), and her mother during a recent appeal for information about Bronwynne's murder. Source: News Limited

Bronwynne Richardson in an undated copy photo. Source: News Limited

Ms Richardson's death has been the subject of at least two coronial inquests and represents the oldest unsolved crime to result in an arrest by NSW detectives.

NSW Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Mick Willing, praised detectives for their "unyielding tenacity and commitment to their investigations."

"This is yet another example of why the Unsolved Homicide Team was formed in 2008," Supt Willing said.

"By their very nature, these old, unsolved cases are extremely challenging investigations, but we have a team of Unsolved Homicide detectives who are brilliant at what they do, and are committed to getting results no matter how long ago the crime occurred."

Bronwynne Richardson competes at the Miss Corowra Showgirl pageant in 1971. Source: News Limited

A 1975 coronial inquest found that Ms Richardson died of strangulation and drowning. A second inquest in 2011 saw the introduction of previously unheard evidence..

In 1990, three men were charged in connection with Ms Richardson's death but none were convicted.

Newey is expected to front Sydney's Central Local Court late this afternoon or tomorrow morning.

Bronwynne Richardson in an undated copy photo. Source: News Limited


14.05 | 0 komentar | Read More

Has the weather gone totally mad?

Here's an American tourist at Bondi Beach on Wednesday as the temperature nudged the mid 20s. She'll get an awful shock Friday or Saturday when that bitterly cold southerly hits. Pic. Phil Hillyard. Source: News Corp Australia

THEY call it the hairdryer.

It's a gale-force westerly wind that heats up the south east of Australia in late winter, tearing the snow off the ski slopes like paint stripper and giving east-coast residents an early, teasing taste of spring.

Then it slams the door in your face, mocking your T-shirt and shorts with an Antarctic blast that sends you scurrying for your winter woollies.

Storm chaser Hannah took this from her balcony in Docklands just as the cold front hit Melbourne this afternoon. Picture credit: Hannah Weddell Source: News Corp Australia

When we first saw this image of Melburnians on Middle Park beach, we thought the black thing was an upside down labrador which had blown off its chain. We now realise it's apparently just a jacket. Either way, it illustrates wild weather. Picture: Nicole Garmston. Source: News Corp Australia

No, the weather hasn't gone mad. It's just gotten a little extreme.

It's also gotten extremely scary in some parts of the country. Launceston Police said a person had died as a result of injuries sustained when a tree fell in high winds about 12.30pm today. Strong-to-gale-fore winds will increase across much of south east Australia in the coming 24 hours.

So what's going on?

This is actually a classic setup for the second half of winter, and we're going to borrow a few weather charts from the Bureau of Meteorology website to explain all that.

This first chart shows the current weather situation right about now.

Lunchtime Thursday July 31. Source: NewsComAu

See the big low pressure system below Tasmania? The first thing to understand is that air circulates clockwise around a low.

The wavy lines, called isobars, help show you which way the air is flowing. So as you can see, right now there's a bunch of air flowing across NSW and Victoria which has more or less come from central Australia. As you'd imagine, that air is pretty warm.

You should also know that the closer the isboars are together, the windier it is. And those isobars are really close together. Thredbo in the NSW Snowy Mountains has had gusts in excess of 100 km/h for each of the last three days. In the last hour or so before this story was published, wind speeds touched 124 km/h. Mt Hotham in Victoria just hit 113 km/h. Eek.

As mentioned, all that wind plus warmish temperatures create a real hairdryer effect. That's why the snow in the Aussie Alps has gone from this...

The Aussie snowfields a couple of weeks back Source: NewsComAu

To this...

The same scene after three days of hairdryer. Source: NewsComAu

But the cold is about to return with a vengeance. Have a look at the projcted weather map for Friday.

See what we mean? Source: NewsComAu

See how the cold front will have crossed the south east by late Friday morning? The front is the line with the black "shark fins" on it. Now the air impacting south east Australia is coming from a cold place way down in the Southern Ocean. That means good snow for the Alps, plus snowfalls to fairly low levels in NSW and Victoria. The suburbs of Hobart and Canberra may even see a few flakes Friday.

It also means your taste of spring is over. For now.

In summary, the weather has not gone mad. Cold outbreaks like this with big surges of warm air ahead of them are really common this time of year. The strong winds are common too. Be careful out there, people.

Got a wild weather pic? Tweet us at @newscomauHQ or @antsharwood and we'll upload the best ones into this story!

Gigantic waves crash into Mornington Harbour on July 31, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. Temperatures dropped and strong winds of over 100mk/h hit Melbourne this afternoon, bringing rain and hail across the state. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images) Source: Getty Images


14.05 | 0 komentar | Read More

Being a ‘dole bludger’ is no laughing matter

Early days: Comedians Greg Fleet, Wil Anderson, Peter Moon, Carl Barron and Dave Hughes. Source: News Limited

Gordon Ramsay, Therese Rein and Jodi Gordon ... Wil Anderson takes aim at the stories that made headlines this week.

IF YOU read Wil Anderson's biography you won't find any mention of the six months he spent on the dole.

It's not something that is significant when you look at his 19-year career that spans hugely successful stints on radio, television and on the stand-up circuit.

Yet, it was the safety net that helped Anderson take a chance on making a go of his dream, and far from fitting the stereotype of "dole bludging", the comedian said he worked really hard.

"I think we need to broaden the definition of what constitutes looking for work," Anderson told news.com.au

Anderson's comments come amid the federal government's proposed reforms to the dole, which include a six month waiting period, the reintroduction of work for the dole and an increase in the required number of job applications to 40 a month.

Anderson said that while he dutifully submitted his required number of applications to places like Safeway supermarkets, his real attempts at getting a job were not formally acknowledged.

For Anderson, the genuine efforts he was making were aimed at getting the job he really wanted: as a stand up comedian. Today, he's one of our most successful comics.

"I was gigging constantly, I was working for free, it was actually costing me money to drive to these places for stand up gigs," he said.

Starting out: Anderson promoting his show at the Adelaide Festival Fringe in 2000. Source: News Limited

Anderson's efforts were not legitimate in the federal government's eyes. It only counted applications for jobs he didn't want.

"I was doing the right thing creating a career and working hard, in theory doing what I should do, but they set up a system where I had to lie about it."

The Gruen Transfer host said it took most comedians about two years of doing mostly unpaid gigs in order to establish themselves enough to support themselves financially.

Complicating the job situation was having to leave Friday and Saturday nights free for potential gigs, which made it hard to get work in bars or restaurants, where most of the part time jobs were.

"I can't imagine any stand up comedian who didn't go through a period on the dole," Anderson said.

Fellow comedian Dave Hughes even based a routine around being unemployed, but Anderson says: "I guarantee you he didn't want to stay on the dole".

Success: Wil Anderson as the host of one of television's most popular shows The Gruen Transfer. Pictured with Todd Sampson and Russel Howcroft. Source: Supplied

"People don't want to be on the dole, it's always been this idea that it's easy, but it's terrible having no money, doing all the pointless work, constantly being rejected.

"I would catch up with people from uni and would pray that when the bill came I would only have to pay for what little I ate, if someone suggested splitting the bill eight ways I would be f***ed for the week."

The risk paid off for Anderson, and he has managed to leverage that time to eventually build a career that has already created work for a significant number of people in support roles around him. When he appears at the Melbourne Comedy Festival, this provides work for many others, including agents and theatre workers. Anderson said he would help to keep hundreds of people in work over his lifetime.

"You need people being creative, who can build industries here (in Australia), to be the next Steve Jobs, or Biz Stone from Twitter or Dave Hughes... or the next Baz Luhrmann. These are the people who create our future from their minds."

"Over 19 years, I created a small business using my imagination and the government helped me for six months. It seems weird that you would discourage someone from doing that."

What a colourless place the world would be without Baz Luhrmann's movies. Source: Supplied

He said the dole played an important role as an "unofficial arts grant" in a country where there were few arts scholarships, compared to the opportunities provided for athletes, for example.

"You can't have a great life on $36 a day, you can't do anything, you are constantly being rejected, to say that's a good life, it's just crazy and probably said by someone who has never had to live on that money.

"Having a job is better than being on the dole, unfortunately for some they have never had the opportunity to experience this, they are the ones we should be encouraging into the workforce."

Anderson: spent six months on and off on the dole. Source: Supplied

Anderson said the government's proposed changes, including six month periods where job seekers aged under 30 could not get any benefit, did not make sense.

"Why are you punishing the most vulnerable to weed out a few cheating the system?"

"Forcing people into poverty seems incredibly cruel to me."

He said it was not possible to live for six months without money and would also make job seeking even tougher if people did not have a proper place to sleep or a place to write a resume.

"How can you dry-clean a suit for a job interview? How can you get public transport there?"

"You are putting the burden on their parents and family."

He said it also represented a "strange juxtaposition" with the government's lax approach, for example, on rogue operators in the financial planning sector who have cost people millions of dollars.

While Anderson was not in favour of the tighter measures on job seekers, in principle he believed those on unemployment benefits should be actively looking for work.

"I agree with the principle that those being supported in society have a cultural obligation," he said.

"That's why I don't cheat on my tax... because I believe as an Australian, I should pay my fair share."

We need to inspire people: Wil Anderson. Source: Supplied

Anderson said "we should always try and root out" those in the community taking advantage of the system, but demonising everyone on the dole, these already vulnerable people, would not work.

"We need a system that inspires people to have a job, that doesn't punish them when they don't have a job, this won't accomplish anything except punishing people further."

However, he said the government was looking in the wrong place for solutions.

Rather than looking at the elites and those who have more as the "reason you don't have stuff", he said the focus was on those less fortunate.

"It's the easiest thing to do... to explain why you don't have stuff is to blame those even weaker than you, the dole bludgers and boat people... instead of the people who have more."


14.05 | 0 komentar | Read More

The biggest abandoned city you’ve never heard of

Construction of the city made use of the beautifully coloured local volcanic basalt. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

FOUNDED more than 1600 years ago, the ancient city of Ani was once one of the world's greatest metropolises. Today it sits in crumbling ruins, its former glory a distant memory.

Sitting deep in eastern Turkey, thousands of kilometres from bustling Istanbul, Ani lay on several trade routes and grew to become a walled city of more than 100,000 residents by the 11th century.

The ruins sit dramatically against the plateaus of inland Turkey. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

Explore the incredible ruins of one of the world's greatest cities. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

At its peak, Ani was a city of opulence, magnificence and architectural wonder. It was the citadel, former capital and heart of the great Armenian empire.

Known as the city of 1000 churches, its religious buildings, palaces and fortifications were among the most technically and artistically advanced structures in the world.

All of its buildings were constructed using local volcanic basalt that was easily carved and came in a variety of vibrant colours from creamy yellow, to rose-red to jet black.

The Cathedral of Ani. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

In the centuries that followed its peak, Ani and its surrounding region were conquered hundreds of times by Byzantine emperors, Ottoman Turks, Armenians, nomadic Kurds, Georgians, and Russians.

By the 1300s the city was in steep decline and completely abandoned by the 1700s.

Largely forgotten for over 700 years, its crumbling ruins were the victim of looters and vandals, Turks who tried to eliminate Armenian history from the area and poorly managed archaeological digs.

Forgotten buildings are overgrown by vegetation. Picture: MrHicks46. Source: Flickr

Inside one of the restored churches. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Today Ani sits on the border of Turkey and Armenia, whose diplomatic relations have been frosty at the best of times. However it remains a historically important site where you can see a still-standing 1000-year-old mosque. The Cathedral and its domed basilica represent the city's progressive architecture and the Church of the Holy Redeemer that was built in 1035 remained largely intact until 1955.

Here are the incredible photographs from travel blog Yomadic showing the beautiful ruins of one of the world's greatest cities.

Eerie yet incredibly beautiful, the ruins of Ani. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The abandoned building showcase incredible architecture of the time. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The abandoned city walls and cathedral domes. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

The crumbling Cathedral in the city of churches. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Abandoned bridge sits on the border of Turkey and Armenia. Once, it formed part of the "Silk Road". Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Its city walls were designed to keep armies out. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied

Efforts at preservation are occurring but funds are low. Picture: Nate Robert. Source: Supplied


13.56 | 0 komentar | Read More

Has the weather gone totally mad?

Here's an American tourist at Bondi Beach on Wednesday as the temperature nudged the mid 20s. She'll get an awful shock Friday or Saturday when that bitterly cold southerly hits. Pic. Phil Hillyard. Source: News Corp Australia

THEY call it the hairdryer.

It's a gale-force westerly wind that heats up the south east of Australia in late winter, tearing the snow off the ski slopes like paint stripper and giving east-coast residents an early, teasing taste of spring.

Then it slams the door in your face, mocking your T-shirt and shorts with an Antarctic blast that sends you scurrying for your winter woollies.

Storm chaser Hannah took this from her balcony in Docklands just as the cold front hit Melbourne this afternoon. Picture credit: Hannah Weddell Source: News Corp Australia

When we first saw this image of Melburnians on Middle Park beach, we thought the black thing was an upside down labrador which had blown off its chain. We now realise it's apparently just a jacket. Either way, it illustrates wild weather. Picture: Nicole Garmston. Source: News Corp Australia

No, the weather hasn't gone mad. It's just gotten a little extreme.

It's also gotten extremely scary in some parts of the country. Launceston Police said a person had died as a result of injuries sustained when a tree fell in high winds about 12.30pm today. Strong-to-gale-fore winds will increase across much of south east Australia in the coming 24 hours.

So what's going on?

This is actually a classic setup for the second half of winter, and we're going to borrow a few weather charts from the Bureau of Meteorology website to explain all that.

This first chart shows the current weather situation right about now.

Lunchtime Thursday July 31. Source: NewsComAu

See the big low pressure system below Tasmania? The first thing to understand is that air circulates clockwise around a low.

The wavy lines, called isobars, help show you which way the air is flowing. So as you can see, right now there's a bunch of air flowing across NSW and Victoria which has more or less come from central Australia. As you'd imagine, that air is pretty warm.

You should also know that the closer the isboars are together, the windier it is. And those isobars are really close together. Thredbo in the NSW Snowy Mountains has had gusts in excess of 100 km/h for each of the last three days. In the last hour or so before this story was published, wind speeds touched 124 km/h. Mt Hotham in Victoria just hit 113 km/h. Eek.

As mentioned, all that wind plus warmish temperatures create a real hairdryer effect. That's why the snow in the Aussie Alps has gone from this...

The Aussie snowfields a couple of weeks back Source: NewsComAu

To this...

The same scene after three days of hairdryer. Source: NewsComAu

But the cold is about to return with a vengeance. Have a look at the projcted weather map for Friday.

See what we mean? Source: NewsComAu

See how the cold front will have crossed the south east by late Friday morning? The front is the line with the black "shark fins" on it. Now the air impacting south east Australia is coming from a cold place way down in the Southern Ocean. That means good snow for the Alps, plus snowfalls to fairly low levels in NSW and Victoria. The suburbs of Hobart and Canberra may even see a few flakes Friday.

It also means your taste of spring is over. For now.

In summary, the weather has not gone mad. Cold outbreaks like this with big surges of warm air ahead of them are really common this time of year. The strong winds are common too. Be careful out there, people.

Got a wild weather pic? Tweet us at @newscomauHQ or @antsharwood and we'll upload the best ones into this story!

Gigantic waves crash into Mornington Harbour on July 31, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. Temperatures dropped and strong winds of over 100mk/h hit Melbourne this afternoon, bringing rain and hail across the state. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images) Source: Getty Images


13.56 | 0 komentar | Read More

Does he have a killer secret?

Bronwynne Richardson was kidnapped, raped, murdered and dumped in the Murray River Source: News Limited

THE man charged over the 1973 kidnap, rape and murder of Albury teenager Bronwynne Richardson has arrived in Sydney to face court after being extradited from South Australia.

Colin Michael Newey arrived in Sydney this afternoon after being arrested by detectives from NSW's Unsolved Homicide Squad.

Colin Michael Newey arrives at Sydney Airport this afternoon flanked by NSW cold case detectives. Picture: Mark Evans Source: News Corp Australia

The 61-year-old was unshaven with a long white beard and showed little emotion as he was escorted by detectives through Sydney Airport, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Ms Richardson, 17, was murdered on October 12, 1973 before being dumped in the Murray River.

Accused killer Colin Michael Newey walks through Sydney Airport with two NSW cold case detectives . Picture: Mark Evans Source: News Corp Australia

Her body was recovered from a lagoon running off the river two days later. Police believe she was dragged into a vehicle and sexually assaulted before being strangled and drowned.

Bronwynne Richardson was abducted, raped, strangled and drowned near Albury in 1973 Source: News Limited

Detectives from the NSW Unsolved Homicide Squad arrested Newey in the South Australian town of Murray Bridge just before 10am yesterday.

Newey made a brief appearance at Murray Bridge Magistrates Court, where an extradition order was served, before being kept overnight at Adelaide Watch House.

Bronwynne Richardson's older sister Jannette Swinton (right), and her mother during a recent appeal for information about Bronwynne's murder. Source: News Limited

Bronwynne Richardson in an undated copy photo. Source: News Limited

Ms Richardson's death has been the subject of at least two coronial inquests and represents the oldest unsolved crime to result in an arrest by NSW detectives.

NSW Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Mick Willing, praised detectives for their "unyielding tenacity and commitment to their investigations."

"This is yet another example of why the Unsolved Homicide Team was formed in 2008," Supt Willing said.

"By their very nature, these old, unsolved cases are extremely challenging investigations, but we have a team of Unsolved Homicide detectives who are brilliant at what they do, and are committed to getting results no matter how long ago the crime occurred."

Bronwynne Richardson competes at the Miss Corowra Showgirl pageant in 1971. Source: News Limited

A 1975 coronial inquest found that Ms Richardson died of strangulation and drowning. A second inquest in 2011 saw the introduction of previously unheard evidence..

In 1990, three men were charged in connection with Ms Richardson's death but none were convicted.

Newey is expected to front Sydney's Central Local Court late this afternoon or tomorrow morning.

Bronwynne Richardson in an undated copy photo. Source: News Limited


13.56 | 0 komentar | Read More

Being a ‘dole bludger’ is no laughing matter

Early days: Comedians Greg Fleet, Wil Anderson, Peter Moon, Carl Barron and Dave Hughes. Source: News Limited

Gordon Ramsay, Therese Rein and Jodi Gordon ... Wil Anderson takes aim at the stories that made headlines this week.

IF YOU read Wil Anderson's biography you won't find any mention of the six months he spent on the dole.

It's not something that is significant when you look at his 19-year career that spans hugely successful stints on radio, television and on the stand-up circuit.

Yet, it was the safety net that helped Anderson take a chance on making a go of his dream, and far from fitting the stereotype of "dole bludging", the comedian said he worked really hard.

"I think we need to broaden the definition of what constitutes looking for work," Anderson told news.com.au

Anderson's comments come amid the federal government's proposed reforms to the dole, which include a six month waiting period, the reintroduction of work for the dole and an increase in the required number of job applications to 40 a month.

Anderson said that while he dutifully submitted his required number of applications to places like Safeway supermarkets, his real attempts at getting a job were not formally acknowledged.

For Anderson, the genuine efforts he was making were aimed at getting the job he really wanted: as a stand up comedian. Today, he's one of our most successful comics.

"I was gigging constantly, I was working for free, it was actually costing me money to drive to these places for stand up gigs," he said.

Starting out: Anderson promoting his show at the Adelaide Festival Fringe in 2000. Source: News Limited

Anderson's efforts were not legitimate in the federal government's eyes. It only counted applications for jobs he didn't want.

"I was doing the right thing creating a career and working hard, in theory doing what I should do, but they set up a system where I had to lie about it."

The Gruen Transfer host said it took most comedians about two years of doing mostly unpaid gigs in order to establish themselves enough to support themselves financially.

Complicating the job situation was having to leave Friday and Saturday nights free for potential gigs, which made it hard to get work in bars or restaurants, where most of the part time jobs were.

"I can't imagine any stand up comedian who didn't go through a period on the dole," Anderson said.

Fellow comedian Dave Hughes even based a routine around being unemployed, but Anderson says: "I guarantee you he didn't want to stay on the dole".

Success: Wil Anderson as the host of one of television's most popular shows The Gruen Transfer. Pictured with Todd Sampson and Russel Howcroft. Source: Supplied

"People don't want to be on the dole, it's always been this idea that it's easy, but it's terrible having no money, doing all the pointless work, constantly being rejected.

"I would catch up with people from uni and would pray that when the bill came I would only have to pay for what little I ate, if someone suggested splitting the bill eight ways I would be f***ed for the week."

The risk paid off for Anderson, and he has managed to leverage that time to eventually build a career that has already created work for a significant number of people in support roles around him. When he appears at the Melbourne Comedy Festival, this provides work for many others, including agents and theatre workers. Anderson said he would help to keep hundreds of people in work over his lifetime.

"You need people being creative, who can build industries here (in Australia), to be the next Steve Jobs, or Biz Stone from Twitter or Dave Hughes... or the next Baz Luhrmann. These are the people who create our future from their minds."

"Over 19 years, I created a small business using my imagination and the government helped me for six months. It seems weird that you would discourage someone from doing that."

What a colourless place the world would be without Baz Luhrmann's movies. Source: Supplied

He said the dole played an important role as an "unofficial arts grant" in a country where there were few arts scholarships, compared to the opportunities provided for athletes, for example.

"You can't have a great life on $36 a day, you can't do anything, you are constantly being rejected, to say that's a good life, it's just crazy and probably said by someone who has never had to live on that money.

"Having a job is better than being on the dole, unfortunately for some they have never had the opportunity to experience this, they are the ones we should be encouraging into the workforce."

Anderson: spent six months on and off on the dole. Source: Supplied

Anderson said the government's proposed changes, including six month periods where job seekers aged under 30 could not get any benefit, did not make sense.

"Why are you punishing the most vulnerable to weed out a few cheating the system?"

"Forcing people into poverty seems incredibly cruel to me."

He said it was not possible to live for six months without money and would also make job seeking even tougher if people did not have a proper place to sleep or a place to write a resume.

"How can you dry-clean a suit for a job interview? How can you get public transport there?"

"You are putting the burden on their parents and family."

He said it also represented a "strange juxtaposition" with the government's lax approach, for example, on rogue operators in the financial planning sector who have cost people millions of dollars.

While Anderson was not in favour of the tighter measures on job seekers, in principle he believed those on unemployment benefits should be actively looking for work.

"I agree with the principle that those being supported in society have a cultural obligation," he said.

"That's why I don't cheat on my tax... because I believe as an Australian, I should pay my fair share."

We need to inspire people: Wil Anderson. Source: Supplied

Anderson said "we should always try and root out" those in the community taking advantage of the system, but demonising everyone on the dole, these already vulnerable people, would not work.

"We need a system that inspires people to have a job, that doesn't punish them when they don't have a job, this won't accomplish anything except punishing people further."

However, he said the government was looking in the wrong place for solutions.

Rather than looking at the elites and those who have more as the "reason you don't have stuff", he said the focus was on those less fortunate.

"It's the easiest thing to do... to explain why you don't have stuff is to blame those even weaker than you, the dole bludgers and boat people... instead of the people who have more."


13.56 | 0 komentar | Read More

Usain: ‘Comm Games are s**t’

Written By kom limapulan on Rabu, 30 Juli 2014 | 14.05

James Magnussen leads the way as Australia claim all three medals in the men's 100m freestyle final with Cameron McEvoy bagging silver and Tommaso D'Orsogna winning bronze

Australian swimmer James Magnussen. Source: Getty Images

NOW we know what sprinting superstar Usain Bolt really thinks about the Commonwealth Games.

According to The Times , the world's fastest man was waiting for his car in the athletes' village overnight when he unleashed a thunderbolt, saying the Games are "a bit s**t" and "the Olympics were better".

The awkward thing is, he's right.

"Look Usain, there goes your popularity in Scotland." Source: Getty Images

We've sorted through a long series of results from Glasgow 2014 and London 2012, comparing winning times and determining where the Commonwealth Games champions would have placed at the Olympics.

There's only one conclusion. Many athletes who have won gold in the absence of nations such as China, Russia and the United States would have missed out on medals altogether if they'd posted identical times in London.

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James Magnussen has won two gold medals in Glasgow. But don't get too excited. Source: Getty Images

Australian swimmer James Magnussen, who has supposedly expelled some demons by winning two events at the Commonwealth Games, is a perfect example.

Magnussen was under huge pressure when he arrived in Glasgow, having failed to win a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics. Since the start of the Games, he has claimed four medals, two of which were gold.

MORE: Usain's insane press conference

Here's the inconvenient part. Magnussen's winning time in the 100m freestyle at these Games would have earned him eighth place in London.

Instead of hanging a silver medal around his neck — not a bad consolation prize, really — Magnussen would have finished behind swimmers you've never heard of, such as Cuba's Hanser Garcia and Brazil's Cielo Filho.

This image shows where Kemar Bailey-Cole would have come in the 100m sprint in London. Source: NewsComAu

It's a similar story across all the events in Glasgow. Kemar Bailey-Cole, who won the men's 100m sprint with a time of 10 seconds flat on Tuesday morning, would have come eighth in London as well. In the final, he only would have beaten compatriot Asafa Powell, who slowed down after injuring his groin.

Incidentally, the five fastest men from that race — Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake, Justin Gatlin, Tyson Gay and Ryan Bailey — were all missing from the event in Glasgow.

MORE: Usain's insane press conference

Granted, in some rare instances, our athletes have performed better at the Commonwealth Games. Australian runner Emma Jackson, who came fifth in the triathlon, would have won an Olympic gold medal with the same time in London.

For the most part, however, the results at these Games are far less impressive.

We've examined 27 events below.

Is Usain right?

Emma Jackson's Commonwealth Games time would have earned her a gold medal at the London Olympics. Source: News Corp Australia

MEN'S 100M SPRINT

Olympic champion

Usain Bolt (Jamaica), with a time of 9.63 seconds.

Commonwealth champion

Kemar Bailey-Cole (Jamaica), with a time of 10 seconds. He would have come eighth in London.

Kemar Bailey-Cole won the men's 100m sprint at the Commonwealth Games. Source: AP

WOMEN'S 100M SPRINT

Olympic champion

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (Jamaica), with a time of 10.75.

Commonwealth champion

Blessing Okagbare (Nigeria), with a time of 10.85. She would have come equal fourth in London, alongside American sprinter Tianna Madison.

Blessing Okagbare claimed gold in the women's 100m. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S MARATHON

Olympic champion

Stephen Kiprotich (Uganda), with a time of 2:08:01.

Commonwealth champion

Michael Shelley (Australia), with a time of 2:11:15. He would have finished sixth at the Olympics, which is undeniably respectable.

Australian Michael Shelley won the men's marathon. Source: AFP

WOMEN'S MARATHON

Olympic champion

Tiki Gelana (Ethiopia), with a time of 2:23:07.

Commonwealth champion

Flomena Daniel (Kenya), with a time of 2:26:45. She would have come 15th in London.

Gold medallist Flomena Daniel of Kenya. Source: Getty Images

WOMEN'S TRIATHLON

Olympic champion

Nicola Spirig (Switzerland), with a time of 1:59:48.

Commonwealth champion

Jodie Stimpson (England), with a time of 1:58:56. Australia's Emma Jackson came fifth at the Commonwealth Games, but her time would have won a gold medal in London.

Jodie Stimpson won the women's triathlon. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S TRIATHLON

Olympic champion

Alistair Brownlee (England), with a time of 1:46.25.

Commonwealth champion

Alistair Brownlee (England) again, with a time of 1:48.50. That would have earned him 15th place at the Olympics.

Alistair Brownlee of England, who won the men's triathlon. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S 4x100M FREESTYLE RELAY

Olympic champion

France, with a time of 3:09.93.

Commonwealth champion

Australia, with a time of 3:13.44. Magnussen's boys would have equalled their fourth-placing from London, but with a worse time.

Australia's 4x100m freestyle relay team. Source: Getty Images

WOMEN'S 4x100M FREESTYLE RELAY

Olympic champion

Australia, with a time of 3:33.15.

Commonwealth champion

Australia, with a time of 3:30.96. That's a world record. Enough said.

Cate Campbell, Emma McKeon, Bronte Campbell and Melanie Schlanger. Source: AFP

MEN'S 100M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Nathan Adrian (USA), with a time of 47.52.

Commonwealth champion

James Magnussen (Australia), with a time of 48.11. He would have come eighth at the Olympics, with a slower time than he managed in London.

James Magnussen won the 100m freestyle at the Commonwealth Games. Source: Getty Images

WOMEN'S 100M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Ranomi Kromowidjojo (Netherlands), with a time of 53.00.

Commonwealth champion

Cate Campbell (Australia), with a time of 52.68. Cate and her sister Bronte (52.86) actually would have finished first and second in London.

Bronte (left) and Cate (right) Campbell celebrate after finishing first and second. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S 200M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Yannick Agnel (France), with a time of 1:43.14.

Commonwealth champion

Thomas Fraser-Holmes (Australia), with a time of 1:45.08. He would have finished fifth, just behind American superstar Ryan Lochte, in London.

Thomas Fraser-Holmes won the 200m freestyle in Glasgow. Source: AP

WOMEN'S 200M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Allison Schmitt (USA), with a time of 1:53.61.

Commonwealth champion

Emma McKeon (Australia), with a time of 1:55.57. She would have come second at the Olympics.

Emma McKeon smiles after winning the 200m freestyle. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S 400M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY

Olympic champion

Ryan Lochte (USA), with a time of 4:05.18.

Commonwealth champion

Daniel Wallace (Scotland), with a time of 4:11.20. He would have come fifth in London, one place behind Michael Phelps.

Daniel Wallace won gold in front of his home fans. Source: Getty Images

WOMEN'S 200M BREASTSTROKE

Olympic champion

Rebecca Soni (USA), with a time of 2:19.59.

Commonwealth champion

Taylor McKeown (Australia), with a time of 2:22.36. She would have come fifth in London, behind Rikke Pedersen of Denmark.

Taylor McKeon won the 200m breaststroke for Australia. Source: AFP

WOMEN'S 100M BACKSTROKE

Olympic champion

Missy Franklin (USA), with a time of 58.33.

Commonwealth champion

Emily Seebohm (Australia), with a time of 59.37. She would have finished eighth at the Olympics.

Emily Seebohm won the 100m backstroke in Glasgow. Source: News Corp Australia

WOMEN'S 4x200M FREESTYLE RELAY

Olympic champion

The USA, with a time of 7:42.92.

Commonwealth champion

Australia, with a time of 7:49.90. That's a Commonwealth Games record, but it only would have earned us fourth place in London.

Gold medallists Emma McKeon, Alicia Coutts, Brittany Elmslie and Bronte Barratt. Source: AP

MEN'S 4x200M FREESTYLE RELAY

Olympic champion

The USA, with a time of 6:59.70.

Commonwealth champion

Australia, with a time of 7:07.38. That would have been enough to come fifth at the Olympics.

Thomas Fraser-Holmes, Ned McKendry, David McKeon and Cameron McEvoy. Source: News Corp Australia

MEN'S 1500M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Yang Sun (China), with a time of 14:31.02.

Commonwealth champion

Ryan Cochrane (Canada), with a time of 14:44.03. He would have come fourth at the Olympics.

Gold medallist Ryan Cochrane of Canada. Source: Getty Images

WOMEN'S 400M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Camille Muffat (France), with a time of 4:01.45.

Commonwealth champion

Lauren Boyle (New Zealand), with a time of 4:04.47. She would have come fifth in London.

Lauren Boyle won the women's 400m freestyle. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S 50M FREESTYLE

Olympic champion

Florent Manaudou (France), with a time of 21.34.

Commonwealth champion

Benjamin Proud (England), with a time of 21.92. That doesn't sound like much of a difference, but Proud would have come eighth at the Olympics.

English gold medallist Benjamin Proud, who won the 50m freestyle. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S 200M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY

Olympic champion

Michael Phelps (USA), with a time of 1:54.27.

Commonwealth champion

Daniel Tranter (Australia), with a time of 1:57.83. He would have come sixth in London, behind swimmers from Brazil and Japan.

Australia's Daniel Tranter celebrates winning the gold medal in the 200m individual medley. Source: AP

WOMEN'S 200M BACKSTROKE

Olympic champion

Missy Franklin (USA), with a time of 2:04.06.

Commonwealth champion

Belinda Hocking (Australia), with a time of 2:07.24. She would have come fourth in London, behind American Elizabeth Beisel.

Belinda Hocking won the 200m backstroke for Australia. Source: AP

MEN'S 200M BACKSTROKE

Olympic champion

Tyler Clary (USA), with a time of 1:53.41.

Commonwealth champion

Mitch Larkin (Australia), with a time of 1:55.83. He would have come sixth at the Olympics, behind swimmers from Poland and China.

Mitch Larkin won the 200m backstroke at the Commonwealth Games. Source: AP

WOMEN'S TRIPLE JUMP

Olympic champion

Olga Rypakova (Kazakhstan), with a distance of 14.98 metres.

Commonwealth champion

Kimberly Williams (Jamaica), with a distance of 14.21 metres. She would have come ninth in London.

Jamaica's Kimberly Williams celebrates winning the women's triple jump. Source: AFP

WOMEN'S 400M

Olympic champion

Sanya Richards-Ross (USA), with a time of 49.55.

Commonwealth champion

Stephanie McPherson (Jamaica), with a time of 50.67. She would have come eighth at the Olympics.

Gold medallist Stephanie McPherson. Source: Getty Images

MEN'S HAMMER THROW

Olympic champion

Krisztian Pars (Hungary), with a distance of 80.59.

Commonwealth champion

Jim Steacy (Canada), with a distance of 74.16. He would have come 10th in London.

Canada's Jim Steacy celebrates winning the men's hammer throw. Source: AFP

MEN'S 110M HURDLES

Olympic champion

Aries Merritt (USA), with a time of 12.92.

Commonwealth champion

Andrew Riley (Jamaica), with a time of 13.32. He would have come fourth at the Olympics.

Gold medallist Andrew Riley of Jamaica. Source: Getty Images


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‘OMG I think I’m being kidnapped’

Schoolgirl April Millsap, 14, texted her boyfriend just before her death according to Michigan Poilce, who are looking for a person of interest. Courtesy: myFOXdetroit.com

"OMG ... I think I'm being kidnapped:" April Millsap's final text before her murder. Source: Supplied

THE family of a teenager murdered while walking her dog on a nature trail believe she may have known her killer.

Police said Michigan schoolgirl April Millsap, 14, texted her boyfriend "OMG ... I think I'm being kidnapped" to her boyfriend just before her death.

April in a photograph handed out by her family, whom police have ruled out as suspects in her murder. Source: Supplied

A couple walking the well-known Macomb Nature Trail in Armada, just north of Detroit, found April's body last Thursday night. Her dog Penny was standing guard.

It later emerged the dog had repeatedly approached other hikers before successfully leading the couple to her body.

April was a "beautiful girl" according to her grandfather. Source: Supplied

April's grandfather Dennis Levans told the Detroit Free Press the family suspected her killer was no stranger.

"That's what we think," Mr Levans said.

"It's almost like it had to be something like somebody knew them. We can't think of any other reason. We can't come up with any other logical reason. We're at a loss, she was just a beautiful young lady."

Police dog handlers search for clues along the Macomb Nature Trail in Armada Source: AP

Police said that when April sent that disturbing text message: "OMG ... I think I'm being kidnapped", her boyfriend and her mother set out in their cars to find her.

Mr Levans said the boyfriend, who has been ruled out as suspect by police, did not realise April was being serious.

A poster being circulated by locals: From left: A police sketch of a person seen in the area around the time of the murder, April Millsap, 14, and April's dog Penny. Source: Supplied

"Sometimes kids can be silly," Mr Levans said. "He might have thought of it as being a prank or something. Why wouldn't he have called the police right away?"

At the weekend, about 300 people attended a vigil for April outside St. Mary Mystical Rose Church in Armada.

Police are looking for two vehicles which may be connected to April's death including a grey, "beat-up", painter's-type van and a small blue-and-white motorcycle. A sketch of a person of interest has also been circulated.


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