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A cluster of ducks.

Def: ‘Re’ – money down the drain.

“I wasted time, and now doth time waste me.”

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The ‘Iron Re’ can’t all be ineffectual, intellectually conflicted, incompetents; can it? It ain’t mathematically possible Shirley. I have met some X-Re’s who were first class; but bloody happy to be out of the Sleepy Hollow swamp. I wonder what an ‘exit interview’ review would produce, if the non disclosure and confidentiality clauses were set aside; a fine tale for a winters night is my bet. There is something seriously, fundamentally ‘rotten’ within the department satellites, aviation wise. Yet AMSA with a similar remit and system seem to manage, quite well, to keep their skirts out of the horse pooh and set an example how things should be. There are not a lot of ‘re’s’ on their copy books, few blots and not a great deal of ‘inquiry’ into the way they conduct matters maritime. They face scrutiny, get asked difficult questions and are asked to explain stuff about ‘what’ they do; but not ‘how’ they do it.

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The aviation agencies just seem to stumble from crisis to crisis; inquiry to inquiry, investigation to investigation, report to report, review to review, rewrite to rewrite – without even a hint of apology or re – form. Valid question P2. Even more valid is how much has all this ‘re’ cost? I reckon the PM would donate his left one to charity for that amount of squandered hard cash on hand. We are talking billions here.

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I expect we could live with the expenditure if it had provided a world leading system, paving the way for the country to meet the challenges of the future and served the needs of a dynamic industry – alas. For many of the BRB the ‘money’ cost is not the biggest item on the  ticket. Airports and infrastructure rate high on the anger scale; what has been sanctioned and allowed to by pass any form of safety net is disgraceful.

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The recent fatal crash of a King Air at Essendon airport has highlighted some fairly serious safety issues. Safety of the general public and aircraft operations. A reasonable man could expect a massive, positive reaction from our safety agencies to the event; well folks, we got a reaction alright. Instant, holistic denial of not only the risks but of the responsibility; across the board, each department passing the parcel around. Mr Pea Body has provided some pictorial evidence (Pigs arse 3 and 4) which is damning.

The Estimates committee have asked questions which produced some of the most ingenious obfuscating ever uttered; the DoIT in flat denial and the ATSB far to busy trying not to rock the big boys boat, hiding behind the ‘investigation’. It is bad enough that that any and all ‘responsibility’ is denied, but where there is a deliberate muddying of the waters, it is time to call a halt. Much depends on RRAT committee, no pressure, but if this Senate crew can’t start to turn things around, then the need for elections is over – the bureaucrats are running the show.

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Looks like the SE committee have turned the heat up under the ASA pot another notch. Many believe the Senators know exactly where the bodies are buried and are now gathering the evidence required for conviction; this will be worth watching as it unfolds.

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Not that the MSM will pay it the attention it merits, too many reasons not to.  “Delicious scandal boss; corruption, huge sums of money, sex, booze, drugs, dodgy deals, top floor involved, everything; there’s a prize in this story”. –  Ed. “Sorry Son, spike it, we’ve been asked to play this one down – top floor and legal involved, just leave it and go and cover the dog show”.

It was P2 who first spotted the ‘deficit’ in the ASA log of FOI. AP does not mind when he gets the odd juicy bone; but dreads having to take it off him. Seems our Estimate committee are of the same water.

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The ASA have sent Halfwit in to try and talk ‘em to death, hoping they’ll let go of their end. Someone, tell him – he’s dreaming’.

The drone wars saga is getting interesting, show casing several departments caught with their pants down, which is neither unusual of particularly novel. The way in which our Senators are using the leverage provided to open several cans of worms is of great interest. The session with Civil Air (ATCO’s association) was noteworthy – you could not see the smiles, but they were there; nicely done CA. Bravo. (Wait for Hansard – all will become clear).

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For those who have neither time nor patience to follow the stories unfolding, but prefer a ‘nutshell’ example of just how bloody hopeless the agencies, responsible to the minister, responsible to the general public for their safety and security, read this small article from Australian Flying – penned by Hitch. A classic and the drop dead truth. Don’t say ‘unbelievable’ – just read it and try not to burst into tears of frustration or hysterical laughter. ASIC ‘re’ badged to Isic – I sick of it.

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The Last Minute Hitch: 16 July 2017
16 Jun 2017
There’s revolution in the air, AAHOF gets a home, Bankstown and Camden are on the FOWSA map and the Wings Awards deadline looms. Read more

Two more for then pot then: RE form the bloody Regulator. Shameless O’Comedy is not the right man to do that; for a start he can’t speak the language, understanding only ministerial expediency and bureaucratic obfuscation. After the reform of the regulator – by all means bring in a mandarin, but only when the CASA board is useful, the department productive and honest and the wilfully destroyed bridges between industry and government have been repaired, declared serviceable and returned to design function.

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Aye well, there never was much hope that things would improve – not for real, even less now if the aviation community is so inured of the BOHICA mind set and continues to assume the position to accommodate, rather than telling ‘em to bugger off, there will be less chance again.

No matter; there is, hiding under a dust sheet in my stable a rather lovely, very old, much abused wardrobe. It must be 150 at least, the challenge is to restore it to ‘original’ condition, as it came the cabinet maker. First, it must be disassembled, it’s always fascinating to look at the saw kerf left by a craftsman on a joint that last saw daylight a century and a half ago; you can actually tell if it was an apprentice, journey man or master who made the cuts. Lost skills, redundant now – the lock on the door was even made by hand – can’t wait meet the shades of the men who made such things.

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