Wednesday 17th of April 2024

WAG THE DOUG- An Eyewitness Bloug


I've taken the liberty of putting postings from my Halliburton blog out on their own, as they chronicle an interesting four days in the history of propoganda.   There are alternative ways that the media protrayal, from last Wednesday night, of Douglas Woods release can be viewed.


You will noticed by the dates and times of entry that everything has been posted soon after its appearance 

I have been looking at it from the viewpoint of "creating future history" ....... 


If Douglas Wood didn't exist, they've had to invent him

He's perfect to demonstrate to American's the stoic co-operation of it's buddy Down Under.

To paraphrase what the U.S. journo on ABC-TV Lateline said, no other Australian hostage except for a U.S. resident would make the front pages of U.S. media.

The "profile" of Australians in the U.S. mas mind has been raised considerably

Will someone explain to me why current affairs media now has the same media feel to an Australian version of Wag The Dog ?.


By Richard Tonkin at 15 June, 2005 - 11:35pm | edit

"Wag The Dog Down Under II: Editorials and Exposes

Check today's Melbourne Sun Herald editorial (a story that's been printed across the world) on how Wood was identified by the name of his dog.  Awww..

It's a luvverly story, it's just a shame that the bloody Iraqi and American armies are contradicting Downer by saying that they found the hostages by accident on a "routine weapons search" .

It sounds like somebody forgot to give the Iraqi raid commander a copy of the script. 

Downer's attempted "clarifications" this evening have been a performance worthy of Sir Humphrey Appleby in "Yes Minister",,, beautiful "smudging", Minister D! 

Your work is a clever as Defence Minister Hill's on Halliburton. 


Minister Hill confused on Doug Wood Release

It would now be a fair guess that the hostage was found by Iraqi forces before Downer's plans took place, forcing the propaganda to be transferred to the new event.

HIl's polly-speak this morning, another attempt to bury the issue, suggests that instead of the Oz Government being portrayed as co-ordinated operatives with their finger on the pulse, they really haven't a clue how it happened.

Now that he's out, he's coming "home"  to Australia to shake hands with Howard and Downer  !  Amazing considering he's been living in the US for 16 years, and whose first public utterance on release was "God Bless America".

I've got a suggestion for the title of the move-


I'd love to see the contingency script (that no doubt would have been written) for how to react if they found a body..... 

"Wag The Doug" movie rights to Harry M. MIller?

Honestly, folks, this is getting ridicuolous

Confusingly, the man who didn't mastermind the rescue is rewarded by becoming head of ASIO, making him, apparently, our leader in the War OnTerror. 

Apologies, to Harry M, the gig goes to "rock guru" Molly Meldrum's management.

With so few listings it's not hard to track down the address of Mark Klemens' Profile Talent ManagementHis website will be up soon

POSTSCRIPT MONDAY 20/5  9.30pm: At the original posting, and up till tonight, the address said "website coming soon"; now Doug Wood is at the top of the talent list! 

 As Robert Burns said "the best laid plains of mice and men..."
Personally the moral of the story is.....look how much orchestration can go into five days.... what about ten years ?


"WAG THE DOUG" double muck-up

The story keeps a-changin".. now Howard says there was a tip off in the middle of a search, whilet he mufti says that his information wasused improperly.  this seems to be settling as "the official version"Except that the Iraqi raid commander had already said that he had not received a tip-off



It's thick, alright. There's so much of it building up around the Wood stories, we should export some to DPRK.

North Korea requests more fertilizer aid

Failed crops and starving millions are hardly good reasons to give up on destiny, but let's suppose Kim has succumbed to Greg Sheridan's smooth persuasion, and DPRK has decided to give up producing nukes. They want to trade their future nuke programs for fertiliser.

Think of the dividends. DPRK takes bullshit in exchange for nuke "programs". It's been tried before, and could become the dominant trade in politics. It's a lot cheaper than the real thing. Saddam bullshitted about his CBW, and nuke, programs, and got away with it for years. The Bushistos got right into the bullshit caper, and dragged the Coalition of the Gullible into a massive war. Australia put bugger-all into the effort, and has come out laughing, if Doug Wood is the icon. The US is pouring blood and treasure into a huge black hole, and is taking losses in credibility, and ruined lives. The formula seems to be: More Bullshit = Less Cost.

If the Koreans haven't taken out the patents, and cornered the market in exportable bullshit, already, I recommend a home-grown industry for Canberra. Instead of running up the expenses of proper Parliamentary Enquiries, let's just have bullshit. No more fake humility from the PM, let's have the bullshit, straight up and no frills. Costello could save his roaring attacks on a mute and inert Opposition, and lay out an easy patter of bullshit. Downer could cast his private school bullying manner to the winds of fortune, and lay into lesser beings with fragrant bullshit; they'd understand, and all concerned would be better off. Nelson could abandon the effort of pretending he doesn't want to privatise everything, and charm the legs off chancellors with bullshit.

It's hard to believe, but an Australian Government that gives up its domineering, profiteering, arrogant, narcissistic and warmongering
ways, may actually be likable. If only they'd stop telling the truth. But they'd better get a move on, the evil DPRK has a head-start.

"We would never have stopped the flood of boats if we hadn't had offshore processing." Just heard on 7.30 Report. Up and running! Inspiring stuff.

By T.G. Kerr at 20 June, 2005 - 8:07pm





Monday 20/6 at 10:30 pm 

Just in case you missed it, here's the link to Doug Wood's management company

Knowing my lack of luck in these matters, they'll probably turn out to  be financially backed by Fox or Halliburton...

Wood entering his media conference today singing "Waltzing Matilda' ( isn't this the man whose slogan only days ago was "God Bless America" ? ). He went on to  express support for U.S. and Australian activities in Iraq 



Pleased with Yourself, Mr Wood?

This is a repeat Gus' blog to the please with yourself comment on the cartoon "mother of Miracles" by Gus... At a press conference at Melbourne Airport, Mr Wood said he supports Australian and US policies on Iraq, and apologised to Prime Minister John Howard and US President George W Bush for some of the things he said while in captivity. "I'm proof positive that the policy of the American and Australian governments is the right one," he said. Mr Wood says his rescue by local police is evidence of the successful training by Australian and American troops. NO SIR!! You are proof that your captors are less butchers than the US troops in a rut. You are lucky your captors had ethics and did not dispose of you as soon as the deadline set had passed. Your words are making more precarious the life of other kidnappees. Please don't pat yourself on the back. You got lucky - very lucky - especially when lives in Iraq are very cheap... and please shut up... Anyway, we are happy you got out of that ordeal alive.

$400k? Worth more!

The lights burned into the wee hours at Kirribilli, as Doug regaled John and Janette with his recent exploits. Doug is a naturally bashful man, but a constant supply of choice wines kept the flow on the move.

Doug wondered how John knew about the "miracle", as he had sworn the witnesses to silence (until the movie was in the can). He told how the sword was raised over his neck, ready to strike, but he got in a quick appeal to Saint Margaret of the Thatch. As his head rolled to the floor, a young woman dressed all in blue, wearing a golden tiara, appeared in a flash of blinding light, picked up his noggin and planted it back on his shoulders, without leaving as much as a scar. The men in the room immediately converted, commenced a diet of ham sandwiches and vowed to undertake a pilgrimage to Rome.

As he was released into the filthy streets, Doug saw, as if for the first time, the great needs of the Iraqi people, instead of a mountain of cash. But first, he heard a cat meowing in pain. A platoon of enormous crack-crazed GIs were torturing a kitten. He despatched the monsters with a single blow, and set to reviving the kitten with warm milk from an eye-dropper. That done, he collected the marines' weapons, and knocked out every terrorist lair in the suburb. Having brought peace and order to a whole district, he spent the next hour repairing the electricity, water and sewerage lines. Then he visited the childrens ward at the hospital. He sutured wounds, pinned broken bones, performed emergency craniotomies, washed and rolled the bandages, and sharpened the scissors. It was nearly time for a break, but he resurfaced 100km of busted roads, and repaired three bridges. Standing still for a second, he thought out a new design for the Hanging Gardens. Off to the museum of antiquities, where he restored the roof and patched up several acres of tiled floor.

While dozing on the plane back home, he came up with several innovative field placings and some drills for improved footwork at the crease, that will help Ricky Pontyng. In between coffee and cake at the Geelong AFL Club, he taught Matt Scarlett how to hold the ball, to get more accuracy and distance, and zen techniques to shadow the opponents more tenaciously.

Doug has already had offers of marriage, in writing, from Condi Rice and Dick Cheney. He is a living legend.

Today he will try to contact Kim Beazley, with some tips on selecting a front bench.

T.C. this man is a saint

Soon to be canonized with a blessed 105 mm Howistzer. Could he be's too traumatised to have a clue to what he's saying...?

Dangerous precedent

You mean .... seven weeks in captivity is enough to scramble the thoughts??

Gosh, if that's true, what would seven years do?

And - if a previously sane person fronts the media with delusions of grandeur, why can't a person in the grip of schizophrenia do the same?  Let's get them all out, and talking. Plenty of cracking yarns, off the medications, and more than enough material for a thousand episodes of BB. I'm out to buy up more Packer Corp, a big comfy sofa and a huge plasma screen. The old dog's getting a bit slow and tired, if I bump her off, I won't have a reason to get out in the fresh air and burn off the excess kilojoules. It's a sensation. I'm a Howard-lover now. Today's episode will be better than the Truman Show. With John's blessing, I'll grow old, but I'll be fat, happy and stupid.

overhead cost recovery .....

The Editor

Sydney Morning Herald                                             June 20, 2005                 


So Douglas Wood’s family believes he has the right to profit from his story as hostage (‘Home at last, and ready to talk turkey about hostage days in Iraq’, Herald, June 20).


Does that mean Wood will graciously reimburse taxpayers for the cost of mounting his rescue?

How to make Doug Wood a hero

As the Labour and the Greens call for Wood to reimburse the rescue  costs and Defence Minister Hill says it was money well spent

perhaps there's another way.

Wood would become a true hero if he set up, with the proceeds from the story deals, a charitable foundation for the families of less fortunate hostages, such as third-world Halliburton employees that have lost their breadwinner

Imagine the potential spin-off stories for Channel 10 this could create.

By the way, now that the rights have gone to Ten, the winners of the U.S. rights will undoubtedly be FOX. 


Metro Doug

Doug just ended another star-studded press conference, where he announced that, in his mind, 'arsehole' is a term of endearment. "It is", he assured the Mufti, "often used with affection in the Coalition Party Room."

Earlier, at the Sydney haunt of fresh recruits to the painters and dockers union, in between sucks on the VB tinny, he described how he had set up several creches in Fallujah, to help out the local women who wanted to do part-time work in their cottage industries. He also successfully represented them at a wages tribunal, so they could get equal pay. A champion for women's rights, he established a number of schools so the Iraqi girls could get a decent high-school education. He was proud to accept an award from the Iraqi chapter of Emily's List, for standing up to the sheiks and factions, to get dozens of women elected into local government.

Clearly, we've just started to see inside the real Doug. Wait till he gets his hair back.

Supermodels and authentic celebrities have been asked to submit their credentials to Max, in preparation for Doug's assault on the hormone replacement and cosmetics markets. Doug hastens to add that, even though he may appear in ads for erectile dysfunction pills, he, in fact, has no need for anything like that. The pump is perfectly satisfactory.

Gov't witheld Wood info: Rudd

Opposition foreign affairs spokesman Kevin Rudd claims that key details of the "Wood operation" were omittted from briefings to Labor.

   Question: is it true that Friday's Telegraph featured a photo of Wood next to a soldier's shoulder that was embroidered with an Australian flag? 

Envoy Doug

Special bulletin: Doug has been selected as Australia's special envoy to the Court of Bushwack, in order to fabricate, prosecute and execute our case against the second Evil, Iran, and integrate our military participation in the next Crusade. This is all top secret, of course, and it's no use asking Bob Hill about it, 'cos he ... knows ... nozink.

Doug's special talents have come in handy, already. Unbeknownst to his captors, he has a fluent grasp of Arabic language and customs (why else would he be in Iraq, anyway?) and overheard the freedom fighters (oops, terrorists of the King David Hotel 1946 Brigade) talking about Iran's nuke factories. In short, they have plans and programs and Condi has models of trucks to prove it.

Rummy was right, they have been furiously digging vast underground networks of chambers and tunnels (just like the ones in the Rockies, where Dick spends his weekends) so they can hide like rats. This vital piece of information is all that George, Tony and John need, to blast the shit out of those treacherous Parisians.


The drones are hovering over Tehran 24/7, secret US bases are building in Azerbijan. It will be on before Xmas, and they won't know what hit them. Subjugate 50 million people? Another cakewalk. 

Thanks, Doug, you are worth your weight in oil.

Hang on a tic ... just heard Greg Sheridan has sought urgent audience with Doug. I believe Greg is going to lend Doug a key to use the dunny at the American Enterprise Institute. What an honour!

Of what plan is Douglas Wood a part of?

Any country that can conceive of killing its own civilians as part of a  campaign to win public approval of mounting a foreign invasion must be treated with utmost suspicion.

Declassified information now tells us that the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff planned to do this in 1962, in an effort to take over Cuba 

 If the Douglas Wood story were some form of hoax, the question would be "why?".  A new ASIO chief doesn't need to be appointed under a smokescreen, but maybe this is part of the manouevering.

Search in Google Video for references to Australia, and you find an abundance of Wheel of fortune questions  etc, but also many FOX references to Al Qaeda wishing to colonize Australia.

I don't think the real campaign is in Australia. at the end of the global population day, who really gives a toss what 20 million Aussies think.   Wood's residential adress casts him as a colonial in the Mother Country, and most media-friendly Australian hostage that a Project for a New American Century (look at the signatories on their Statement Of Principles) could ever hope to find. 

Do we know that Wood wasn't some agency's "sleeper" waiting for such a purpose?

Doug = Human Rights

Make no mistake, our man is getting about.

Here he is, writing for the New York Times, while Nic Kristof takes a breather.

He should be on our national masthead, he's so astute and committed to good journalism. He notes that when General Musharraf was in New Zealand, after exchanging warm fuzzies with the great and powerful of Oz, NZers took the General to task over the treatment of Mukhtaran Bibi.

Despite Mr. Bush's praise, General Musharraf shows more commitment to his F-16's than to his people. Now he's paying the price. Visiting New Zealand the last few days, he was battered by questions about why he persecuted a rape victim, forcing him to cancel interviews.

It's odd that we didn't hear much about it, just across the Tasman. Maybe it's entirely understandable, since those treacherous Kiwis are anti-nuke, and probably are digging underground bunkers to escape the vigilant scrutiny of Rummy.

But rooting out brutality is a better strategy than covering it up, and any nation should be proud to produce someone like Ms. Mukhtaran.

Did Brigadier Sheridan think to suggest John Howard should shake hands with Ms Mukhtaran? But Our Doug will, when he pops over to Kirribilli for afternoon tea. Doug says - put Human Rights before Military Power.

Doug in a maze

In case you missed the latest news, Doug's been helping out the ALP, as promised. In his spare time, too. There's no doubt about it, although he's a well-traveled man of the world, and knows heaps of stuff, he is willing to part with his knowledge, gratis. No expensive consultancy appointments for this true-blue champ.

The Labor immigration team had been getting behind, since Laurie sprained a finger plumping the cushions on the front bench. That meant flicking through the tangle of hard lines, soft edges, crossed floors and cave-ins, that is the government's revised legislation, was pretty slow going. Kim called it "a maze", which could have been a reference to something else. Doug heard the cry of distress, and stepped right into the breach.

Unfortunately, his recent circumstances caused him to make a minor stuff-up. Doug is the essence of pragmatism, although he does as good a job of being truthful as any old college boy. It's harder in today's complex world, so often it's easier to say what you are expected to say. One can always backtrack later. But that's why he suggested Peter Qasim's lack of cooperation may set a "worrying precedent", in the way of floods of paperless boat people. Seven years in the can, and still not cooperating? A slow learner, indeed.

Anyway, Kim took Doug aside, and consoled with the truism, "It's not easy being Laurie".

Wood's captors admit killing three hostages- U.S. Report


This U.S. embedded journalist's account is more explicit in tactical details than anything printed so far in Australia.  In it, Wood's captors tell the troops how they had executed three hostages a fortnight earlier.

No Team Australia, no Swedish smokescreen, just an honest account of the event.

Questions: When Wood said of his captors   "Obviously my head is still intact so it wasn't Al Qaeda" was he unaware of the previous executions?  Was it luck he was spared, or perhaps the "not ransom ?.  Hopefully the Woods haven't just given their hard-earned cash to Osama.


You may see an ad like this in Saturday's Employment pages: 


Doug saves whales

A quiet night for Doug. He's an active sleeper, normally, with good reason. When he puts his head on the pillow, the rush of blood to that massive brain stimulates millions of new ideas. He's usually prepared for it, and not willing to waste so much national knowledge, he stakes out the nearest studio before retiring. After 30 or 40 minutes of fitful doze, he's ready to make major contributions to the arts. This is the best time for a selfless activity, he doesn't want the kudos. Off to that studio, and it doesn't matter what's in there, Doug is dab at music, painting or sculpture. Many of the nations' artists and artistes have opened the door, just after lunch, on a freshly completed concerto or portrait, with no recall. They nearly always assume they were blotto on the job, but it's Doug.

Last night, instead of wearing out another set of sheets, culturally sensitive Doug slipped into a kimono and flip-flopped down to the Redfern fugu bar. Not just to exchange recipes, either, but to test out his new haiku on the proprietor.

Doug had sensed that the IWC vote on commercial whaling had the Government over a barrel. Most Aussies had assumed the PM would run a thousand miles away from the prospect of a million kiddies watching live video of a blood-soaked whale hunt just off Tasmania. However, the equally daunting prospect of an electorate of North Shore mums lusting after the latest Lexus 4WD meant Cabinet had to attend to some diplomacy, and achieve balance. Doug was pleased to hear the PM had chosen his words carefully. "Very important first stage" sounds terrific, even though complete nonsense and utterly devoid of future blame, alongside something simple like "we want a complete ban, the sooner the better". The PM, of course, being a case-hardened Dominionist, couldn't give a flying fruitbat for any animal, let alone monstrous fish-eating mammals, but he disguises it well.

While experiencing the tingling thrill of an especially toxic puffer, Doug had to take a call from Togo. The whaling nations often seek out Doug's advice, though not so much from Norway, where the dominionist "It's meat, I'm hungry" sentiment prevails. The president of Togo had a small problem. His seventeenth son's new Honda has stopped running, the third one this month. He knew the problem was lack of fuel - they always come with full tanks - it was just that Greg usually puts through the order for another container load, but he must be out of town. Could Doug please phone Junichiro? "No problem", said Doug, thinking it would be a good opportunity to get a better price for our iron ore. After all, those whales are big bastards, so they must eat a hell of a lot of fish, and there's nothing wrong with more science. As long as the kiddies can't see the blood, and hear the panic-stricken cries of the wounded calves ... Hmmm. Who do we have to worry about here, 'senators for whales', or 'senators for cheap Toyotas'? Doug is a step ahead of Cabinet, as usual. It's time for a(nother) distraction.

The Student Union Bill looks promising - blood on the carpet, not in the water.

The Liberal senator Brett Mason said yesterday the right to choose whether to join a student union had been "burned into the psyches" of many Liberal MPs and voluntary unionism was an "issue of principle rather than pragmatic politics" for many.

While saying "revenge might be a little strong", he said Liberal MPs viewed passing the bill unamended as a way of "evening the score" against their political rivals from universities of the 1970s and 80s.

Wood convinced not to go back with Coonawarra red and lamb roast

Has Ian Mc Phedran been reading  T.G's brilliant accounts of Wood's activities?  The second-last par here is remarkably similar in style.

Looking at the letters pages, it seems that the Australian public is beginning to doubt the story.   One wag in the 'Tiser has pointed out that a diet of bread and water obviously hasn't been much of a weight-loss program. 

That last link is the first reference I've seen to Wood's co-hostages being his driver and engineer.  Were they killed as extortion for Wood's fee?

Speaking of fees, how much profit will Ten make onselling the Wood story to FOX in the U.S. ?  Probably much more than they paid Wood.  Maybe Ten should cover the rescue costs?

Doug to lead CLP

Your iconic and laconic archetype, Ozzie Doug, has detected a few vacancies in the NT's ranks of CLP candidates (thinking ahead to 2009). Of particular note is the change of hands in the seat of Macdonnell. Alison Anderson, ex-ATSIC Commissioner, stole the popular vote while the incumbent CLP chap wasn't looking.

Accepting that Ms Anderson is a terrific person, will make a great contribution in Darwin and is an obvious pick for a national seat, in time, Doug reckons a bit of the right sort of type-casting, plus a recall of old favours to hand-fed pastoralists, could see him beat her easily next time. Doug has placed a mail-order with an exclusive Adelaide mens outfitters (the exact same place where Howard and Downer get their outback look) for big hat, moleskins and R.M.Williams boots. Doug had thought about the cuban-heeled jobs, but a recent trip to the Moree cattle auctions turned him off - the high heels make those ample, drought-starved bellies hang right over the big flashy Texan belt buckle. There's no point looking half a Yank, you need to go the whole hog.

Doug's a man ahead of his time, and is so confident the texan 'longhorn' salute that's swept the prairies like a hula-hoop craze, will be over here pretty soon. Doug wants it known he got in first, and has been flashing the Longhorn to weekend warriors out cruisin' on their Harleys and has had a 100% response. A truly patriotic gesture, one that will be copied by dills like Rove, for sure. Doug has taken out franchises in a range of patriotic adornments featuring the stars 'n stripes, in case anyone else is thinking of making a killing from that business venture.

Doug wishes Alison the best, but urges her to make the most of it. The Mountain Cattlemen are coming back, to claim their own and sort out the basket-cases like Papunya. We won't be stingy on hand-outs, either, as long as they are flour, tea, sugar and stick tobacco. A bit o' baccy, for breaking in a colt? - that's only fair.

Crikey: dugg & the media - always follow the money .....

1. The real reason why Wood signed with Ten

By Glenn Dyer


Why did Douglas Wood and his family sign the controversial deal with Ten to tell his story next Sunday night with Sandra Sully? Sure, it's about money, but just as importantly it's about control – which makes it a deal that could change the nature of chequebook journalism.

The deal is a "co-production," which means greater control lies in the hands of the talent and not the media outlet. If it becomes the norm, it will mean audiences will have less chance of obtaining an independent and explainable version of these stories. Unlike similar stories on 60 Minutes, Today Tonight or Four Corners, this not independent in any way – it's no more than an officially sanctioned version of the story.

The Australian and The SMH missed the point on Tuesday, but The Age had most of the important detail, including the involvement of Steve Vizard, a part-owner of Wood's management company Profile Talent Management. Vizard, who was known in the 1990s for "clipping the ticket" across a wide range of arts industry deals, is clearly back in the game. Industrial barrister Mark Klemens, the front man for the agency, is Molly Meldrum's manager and was the beak who got Darryl Somers off a drink driving charge three years ago.  

Nine's 60 Minutes apparently had the deal all but in the bag until the Ten co-production idea and more money surfaced. The Age and TV sources say the Ten bid was around $400,000, but the co-production arrangement makes that difficult to work out. Because of revenue sharing deals from any on-sales, Ten could have bid low and offered PTM a bigger share of revenues at the back end from any on-sales, say to the US, which is interested in the story because Wood lives in California.

Ten and Douglas Wood have blown a big hole in the comfortable world of chequebook journalism.



2. Inside the Douglas Wood PR bunker

Hugo Kelly reports:

The Douglas Wood story has not just captured the public's imagination – the journalists covering it have been drawn into the unfolding drama. A scene at the Parliament House press conference last Thursday held by Wood's family raised questions about just how close journalists should come to the action.
The Wood family's PR representative, Neil Smail, moved to end the conference featuring Doug's brothers Malcolm and Vernon: "That's it, unless anyone's got a burning question?"

Nine network reporter David Turnbull spoke up: "Malcolm, I'm not a spokesman for the Press Gallery. I've been around for a fairly long time, on behalf of everybody else, and I don't want to be presumtuous of others here, you've mentioned you've been inspired by the Austraian community's response to you – I've been inspired by you."

Turnbull's coments were followed by a round of applause from some of the gathered hacks. For some, there was a direct link into the drama: Malcolm Wood's daughter, Mary, is a well-known and liked adviser who used to work for the Democrats and now works for Labor's Tanya Plibersek. Others were expressing their relief at the happy ending, and their thanks for what has been an extraordinarily smooth media operation coordinated by the Wood family and DFAT.

But others were unimpressed: "We are here to report the news – not act as a cheer squad," one senior gallery member told Crikey.

Smail, a long-term Canberra PR operative, was contacted by the family six weeks ago when Wood was first kidnapped. He took on the open-ended job pro bono. Speaking to Crikey yesterday, Smail said he had never encountered that kind of response from the media at a press conference. "The family was certainly touched." He said: "My job was to deal mainly with the Australian media and make sure no-one was left hanging. My aim was to keep them off the front lawn at home. And they certainly respected the family's privacy."

Smail succeeded; but when The Gold Coast Bulletin unloaded a crate of VB outside the Wood family home in Kew on Monday, there was a camera on site to record the PR coup. To ensure smooth communications – and that the family got their lines right – Smail liaised with foreign affairs communications operative Chelsea Martin, a former Financial Review press gallery reporter. This was helped enormously by the Wood family toeing the government line and refusing to accede to the kidnappers' demands.
So who was responsible for the smooth public performance of the Wood family during the crisis? we asked Smail. "Well, that was a bit of me, a bit of them. Mostly me." With the action moving back to Melbourne, Smail has handed over PR responsibilities to Paul Quinn, who works for Pubic Relations Exchange, run by Stephen Kerr, son of the late PR guru Laurie Kerr.

Emphasising the unusually intimate relationship he enjoyed with the media, Smail left this note on the Press Gallery bulletin board on Sunday: "With Douglas's release my role as spokesman for the Wood family comes to an end. Thank you all for your unfailing professionalism and courtesy over the past six-and-a-half weeks."

It was, however, a different story for Australia's other freed Iraq hostage, SBS journalist John Martinkus. To compare his treatment, check out this piece on online ezine Signature, where Martinkus makes some scathing comments about his treatment on his release from captivity: "The Australian government tried to discredit me because my assessment of the situation in Iraq was directly contradictory to theirs."

Bread and water

Hi Richard.  Yes I must admit that Dougie looks remarkably well fed for someone who has been on a bread and water diet!

But one must remember this is Dougie we are talking about.  With the many minor miracles he has performed (as chronicled by TG) I am sure he would actually have no problem gaining weight on a fresh air diet.

His satisfied look might also have something to do with the quarter mill in loose change jingling in his jeans.

TG.  I'm told Dougie's next project is to construct a land bridge across Bass Strait.  But knowing Dougie he might decide to merely "part the waters".

This will allow easier access to Tasmania for the new bulldozers and logging trucks that Dougie has arranged to be sent to the island by his friends at Halliburton, Cheyney & Bin Laden.

More questions surrounding Wood

The Swedish guy reckons that he was made by his (and your) captors to take off his mask and watch executions.  Were you exempt from this requirement for the shooting of your driver and engineer?

Is this one of the details that are "too traumatic" to recall? Will you have a miraculous recovery of memory just in time for your chat with Sandra Sully?

You wouldn't be holding onto info to keep it fresh for the TV special, would you, Douglas?  Or is the writing department of Team Wood still working on it?

If the results from the "focus group" broadcast to the Australian public aren't good, then how are you going to spin your portrayal of U.S.-Australia relations to the Yanks without a cultural leg to stand on ?

If the people of Australia aren't behind you, then all your expressions of Australian support of the Coalition on U.S. (FOX) network TV will be meaningless.   You will not be qualified to speak on our behalf, and could not be received credibly by the discerning U.S. public.

Bugger it, who am I kidding?  The stunt will work regardless ! 

Doug disses BBU

Not to be left out of calls to ban crass nudity and deviant sexual acts on free-to-air TV, Doug has lined up against Big Brother Uncut, too. Mind you, it's a good rap for Ch 10, may even be just what they wanted. Doug finds American sit-coms a great waste of bandwidth, too, and is thinking about joining the chorus against them, if only someone else would go first. The sex, of course, is much more tasteful on a decent production, and is food for polite tittering over the canapes, if the rumors are correct. Doug once asked one of his many lady friends about the whirring coming from her handbag. He has made a mental note not to introduce 'rabbit' into a conversation, ever again, even amongst a party of his favourite Aussie mates, say, duckhunters.

But, really, it's pretty obvious those rough types who volunteer to let it all hang out on BB have not had a privileged education. It's just vulgar, and should be banned. A dinky-di Aussie pop-starlet can flaunt sexuality for personal gain, without nipples or genitalia.

Commercial Interests need not fear. There will be a hue and cry for a while. Just duck your heads.

On the whole, much more attention needs to be given to the environment of permissiveness being constructed by the popular media. The overwhelming evidence is that most of it starts at the ABC. Doug reassures taxpayers, that, even if they couldn't care less about BB, whether cut or uncut, eventually the spotlight will move onto the national broadcaster. Then we will have vengeance on those lefties.

Some other things are not fit for public consumption, either. Doug is pleased to read the custodians of public morals, the mainstream media, are going to cut back on our exposure to suicide terrorism. It seems the facts are that bombers emerge as a reaction to invasion of the homeland by foreign armies, and it is a tactic that succeeds. These are facts that the Reconstructionists do not want to hear, and rightly so. For instance, Doug scoured the Oz dailies for an up-to-date count of suicide bombings in Iraq - all of which have occurred since the Global War for Freedom and Hope began. There you are, our media is self-correcting, and that's a good thing.

There's a chart in Iraqi Rebels Refine Bomb Skills, Pushing Toll of GI's Ever Higher but as anyone can see, it's very unpleasant and not the sort of thing Aussie families should trouble themselves with. Instead of reporting morbid facts, let's have a half-page pic of a tennis champ on the rise. Or a series on Shane's sexploits.

Doug Wood Dead But Not Buried: Media

In an amazing turn of events, no Doug Wood stories have been released for 24 hours.

The week-long flurry of media releases from Team Wood, DFAT and the ADF have suddenly gone dry, on what will be known as Bloody Good Friday.

The story will be resurrected on Sunday

a different dugg .....

In question time today Greens Senator Kerry Nettle raised the plight of Australian and Adelaide resident Ahmed Aziz Rafiq who has been imprisoned without charge by US forces in Iraq for over a year. 

Senator Nettle asked what the government was doing to arrange his release and why he has had no consular visits for 11 months only to be told by the Minster for Defence that "I'll have to seek further advice...when we all come back in August I'll able to provide the Senator with an answer." 

"Mr Aziz is an Australian and has been detained by the US forces in Iraq without charge for 12 months but astonishingly the Minister appears to have only the sketchiest knowledge of his plight," Senator Nettle said. 

Government Admits Australian Left To Languish In US Prison In Iraq

closer to the bone

Now we're getting closer to the truth, according to the front page of Sunday's AGE a plane was booked to fly Wood back from Dubai on June 6, then cancelled.  The same story claims that because Australian intelligence would have been able to monitor the progress of negotiations by listening in on the mobiles that the mufti bought the go-betweens, it would have been known that little resistance would be encountered if the military jumped the gun and dragged Wood out before the next scheduled "release"

Of course, Defence Minister Hill is denying that any plan for an earlier release existed.

When Foreign Minister Downer thanked the mufti for his help on Thursday (and held the story over for the weekend) he was still downlplaying the mufti's role in the operation... looks like you were wrong, Alexander!

Douglas Wood on Austalia's ABC-TV Media Watch

When Wood came out today and talked of the excarberation of his illnesses that occurred due to his captivity, I felt like I might be considered an arsehole for criticising him further.

Then I watched Media Watchtonight. I expected to see something about the repeated alterations and justifications by the relevant Australian Federal Government Ministers of their versions of the story over the last week and a half. Instead I saw an exposure of the crassness of the commercialism in the Wood campaign, Wood's financial benefits in the onsale of the story to the US, approaches by his management to Fosters Brewing for a deal (what did he get from the relevant industry boards for plugging lamb roast and Coonawarra Red?) and implications of witholding details of his story from the general public in order to profit financially from their broadcast.

I have noticed that the Wood family have adopted an on-camera policy of shiftng their eyes to the right every time an assertion is made. In Douglas' case, this is a vast change from his earlier appearances (most people assume that shifting the eyes "downward left" while answering is proof of lying), and I wonder how much coaching and rehearsal he may have endured to hone this technique.

To those who have been too busy critising me on other websites for my grammatical contractions, I would like to suggest that you have the courage to express your opinions here instead of whining in your own corners. The credence and volume of questioners of the Wood story grows daily, the ratings are lousy (lousy enough to create a drop in the "exclusive" network host's share prices- source: ABC news finance report) and, as the Aussie born Crown Princess Mary would say if she was an incarnation of Shakespeare "There's something rotten in Denmark."

"Wag The Doug" has only just begun. For those who haven't yet, I suggest you go to the top of this page and read. The Australian public has served the Fox nextwork as a "focus group" for the financial viability of the story in the U.S. market.

While we're on the U.S. subject, why are U.S. readers being told about the rescue being a part of "Operation Lightning" on FOX, when the phrase hasn't been used in Australia?

It restores faith in human nature to see a response of either disbelief or disinterest. Either way, Karma is biting Wood on the "arsehole".

Doug keeps digging

Doug thought about taking a spell, but digging a hole is rewarding fun. There are urgent health needs to be fixed up, in the place of his birth rather than using the second-rate facilities of his home country, where a hard-up bloke may not get red-carpet treatment given to Our Kylie. Doug is not concerned about serious chronic illnesses, like rheumatoid disease, diabetes and glaucoma, the kinds of things that would keep a sane man away from Iraq. Doug only wants his dentures re-tooled, and his contacts should be able to get him to the head of the queue. Tough luck for those other old geezers who've been waiting for years.

Public dental health services, our disgrace
Re: Tom Noble's article, "Pensioner steaks claim on new teeth" (The Age, 23/6), about 74-year-old pensioner William Hurkens, who waited more than four years for dentures. It is a timely reminder of the continuing story of inequity of access to dental health services. Best wishes to Mr Hurkens, whose case was unexpectedly prioritised by a senior state bureaucrat after he went "public" with his story.

But this still leaves thousands of elderly pensioners and other low-income people on public dental waiting lists for many years for basic care. Despite some recent welcome, but small, initiatives at the state level, state-based public dental services remain very constrained with demand massively exceeding supply.

Since 1996, when the Howard Government abolished the Commonwealth Dental Health Program, national waiting lists have increased by 30 per cent to more than half a million people waiting up to five years to access what the community regards as basic dental care.

In a total Commonwealth health budget of $36 billion, not one cent goes directly to public dental health services. The only money that goes to dental health is indirect. This is in the form of support that predominantly higher-income people who have private health insurance "extras" cover (such as dental services) receive through the 30 per cent private health insurance rebate.

While campaigning as a federal Labor candidate for Deakin in last year's election, I met many people in Mr Hurken's situation. Virtually all were reluctant to be involved in the sort of publicity that produced a positive outcome for him. I suspect that waiting more than five years for a basic service that can adversely affect general health by interfering with nutritional intake is one that not many Age readers or their families experience.

Public dental health provision is the Cinderella service within the 10 per cent of a rich nation's GDP spent on public and private health services. A dignified and stoical generation of elderly pensioners deserves better. This issue should receive continuing public policy prominence; hopefully your interesting report helped to do this.

Peter Lynch, Hawthorn
Letters to The Age, June 28, 2005.

Doug knows how poor nutrition can lead to poor health.

Doug was relieved that CUB knocked back his offer to tout for VB. Prince Phil of the Black Ops whispered that terrsts had plans to target major landmarks in Melbourne. There's nothing more iconic than a brewery, and Doug's courageous 'arsehole' call only made Fosters stand out a bit more. Actually, Phil was glad for the assistance. The Brits are brewing up big troubles for themselves over their ID card. The costs have blossomed, and since it's meant to be a user-pays service to the public, the citizenry are voicing disapproval of these urgent government plans. Since these plans are lawful (I think that's what Phil would say) it will be necessary for the public to see the need with more clarity. And there's nothing like a platoon of ASIO goons at 2am to blow away the fog of doubt. But, on this, Doug may, or may not, have played a part, and, further, he cannot confirm or deny. This secrecy caper is hard work. Doug has checked under his caftan, and can assure Phil there are no leeks, nor any other salad vegetables, hidden there.

It's going to be a busy week. Doug has responded to the Pies' calls of distress, and has volunteered to be stand-in timekeeper for the match against Port. He realises that, for a Pies fan, 14 seconds is longer than eternity, which is the time it will take to get another flag. However, Pies fans will be able to enjoy the endless replays of Buchanan's artful cramp at the kick-in on the siren. Eddie will support the fact that Barry Hall is far too aggressive and should be reported for just running on to the ground. Also, if an opposition player pushes off Nathan Buckley's charge at him, that player should be rubbed out for 6 weeks. Doug doubts, however, that Ch9 will re-run Buckley's run along the boundary for 16 metres, and ask viewers to 'be the judge', because the judge made the right call at the time.

Doug re-assures readers of Australia's major dailies that he did not have an affair, with either Diana or JFK jnr. He finds Junior Bush to be a very attractive person, though.

Wood's workers recently killed: Mufti

 " I have grave doubts about the claim made by the Iraqis that the [two]
people who were captured with Wood were killed a month ago. Their
families were not contacted to identify the bodies until June 17. This
was two days after the release of Douglas Wood. It is summer in Iraq;
temperatures are in the high 40s, and so corpses decompose very quickly
in such conditions. It is unlikely that their corpses were kept in the
morgue freezer for a month. Under Islamic law, the dead are buried very
quickly, preferably on the same day. Further, power is rationed in
Iraq, and valuable power would not be wasted on corpses for a whole

Read Sheik Hillali's version of events in the Green Left Weekly,- afterwards it wouldn't hurt to reread this U.S. report 

Was Operation "Team Australia" abducted by Operation Lightining

  While watching George Bush addressing the U.S. on prime time television I fell asleep.

I dreamed of a U.S. President, on the anniversary of his army's supposed Liberation of a country, desperately looking for a story that would vindicate his actions in the news.

Operation Lightning, depicting Iraqis fighting insurgents under U.S. "guidance", wasn't bringing in any Page Ones.  A decisive result could be a booster to the President's dismayingly declining approval ratings.

His aides inform him of the imminent conclusion of Operation Team Australia, in which a dual citizen is used to justify participation in the Coalition to the citizens of two countries.   The photo-op is scheduled to occur in six hours time.

"Perfect," says the President, "Doug would will do the job nicely. "

"Team Australia is irrevelant when my popularity is so low.  Let's make Wood a success story for Operation Lightning, one that we can broadcast acros the U.S.A.  It might even draw a hundred and fifteen references in print  That's bound to be worth one or two percent in the polls! "

This was when I woke up.  Over a coffee I read Pal McGerough's artice "The Raid that went wrong" which describes a sequence of events in which established courses of action seem to have changed dramatically after the Australian Foreign Minister met with the U.S. Secretary of State.

Perhaps the raid actually achieved what it was intended to, like a sudden bolt of Lightning

Doug to the rescue

Doug had been on his way back to Iraq, to negotiate for the release of the Egyptian hostage. The Grand Mufti of Cairo had heard of Doug's sensitivity for the Arabic nations, particularly his outstanding record with Australian Volunteers Abroad, and had asked specifically for Doug. In return, the Mufti promised to put pressure on the "government" of Egypt to cease acting as torture central for the CIA.

While packing for his trip, he got another call, from Schapelle's new lawyer, Hotman. Doug accepted the challenge, he had worked with baggage handlers before. Citizens would be astounded to learn about the stuff that is moved between detention centres, in cargo holds, in the name of freedom and democracy. A few quiet words with the crew at Brisbane, and the person who put the dope in Schapelle's booty coughed up, and was on his way to change places for 20 years in a stinking Bali jail. Remarkable! Corby? ... Corby? ... Doug had heard that name, recently.

On route to the airport, Doug got another emergency call, from an old school pal. He had a few minutes, so detoured to the Happy Clappers annual shout-fest. His pal, Saint Pedro the fishing man, had got into strife while giving the 30,000 a serve of the stuff they love. Not a miserable snack of loaves and Mars bars, either. "Wealth, wealth, wealth, rivers of wealth. We will protect your investments. We will add value to your sectarian schools. We will promote the teaching of Creationism, and encourage the noble professions of Law and Accounting, so your screwed-over clients can move around in our maze of taxation laws. And to hell with Science, we are clever enough as it is." The crowd was ecstatic, pushing up to the stage, and demanding more delusions that their rampant consumerism was going to end poverty in Africa. "We will also enshrine the principles of negative gearing in the Constitution. We've put our faith in families first. Small, decent, law-abiding, drug-free families, living in McMansions Paradise." At this Pete was swamped with votes, and Doug got there just in time to haul him out.

"A close call, Pete!" "Yeah, if Turnbull can slum around on public transport, I guess I'll have to get my hands dirty, too."

Doug rides with the Kellys.

If Doug hadn't been born a Protty, he'd have had boyhood dreams of hanging out with the Kelly Gang. This won't make any sense to anyone but Victorians, who, despite the name, have carried the banner for the Republic since the early days of the colony. Doug regrets the Victorians haven't had the fortitude to kick the Crown off the state flag. So much for symbolism - that proves the Labor mob know they are only looking after the place until the rightful owners get themselves in order. Letting the Club give Steve Vizard an easier time than handed out to a black kid pinching an ice-cream is a good step on the way back.

Doug suspects the PM, although an unrepentant monarchist, wishes there was more of the Kelly streak in his southern compatriots. Ned wouldn't have had any trouble holding up that mob at Hillsong, and carting off their loot in a swag.

There's a glorious opportunity to re-enact Glenrowan, if only the PM would take Paul Kelly's advice (he always does, in the end) and make a significant, open-ended military commitment to Afghanistan. Usama and his gang are hanging around there, waiting for a big, final fire-fight. Although the PM hardly mentions Usama, he won't want to miss the photo ops with George.

The siege of Glenrowan afforded opportunities galore for aspiring politicians, and the model is perfect for successful pollies aspiring to higher office, like head of UNICEF. The offical records show a charred body or two, and the dead body of Joe Byrne propped up against a wall.

Doug advises, if the PM wants that spot next to George alongside the battered corpse of Usama, he'd better get the troops moving toward Kabul.

Doug takes on Geldof

A couple of matters almost intruded on the holiday mood. Doug and the First Lady were in the middle of a fact-finding, taxpayer-funded study tour of Africa's hotels that charge more than $1500 per night. Doug, naturally, would give an expansive one-word report to parliament, in due course.

They had already booked in Paris, at the end, to round out the African agenda. Mainly, how had Jacques managed to piss off the Africans, to shove the 2012 security nightmare onto Britain? Was it just his dissing of English food, or was there more?

The urgent call to Crawford Ranch was to congratulate George on his alignment with Australian values, especially in the sciences. Doug has no better friend than George. The world, apart from idiots like Arnie, were lining up behind us and the US, on global warming.
The division within the president's own Republican ranks was underlined Tuesday as the Republican governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, published an opinion piece in the London's Independent newspaper that implicitly challenged Bush's insistence that more studies about the relationship between emissions and warming were necessary before taking strong measures to reduce emissions. "The debate is over. We know the science," wrote the governor, whose state has become the national leader in mandating sweeping reductions of carbon emissions in the transportation and housing sectors. "We see the threat posed by changes in our climate. And we know the time for action is now."
Bush, whose opposition to Kyoto has isolated him from the rest of the industrialized world with the sole exception of Australia, ...

It's a fad, pushed out by the Green Nazis. A bit more work by the corporate communications consultants, and it will fade away. Doug had a tip for George on the embedding of Creationism in the national curriculum. "We'll lend you Peter Costello. Scientists - a bunch of wankers!"

This led straight into the matter of the appointment of US ambassador to Kirribilli. "Now, George, we'll take Pat Robertson, a cowpuncher, a gunrunner, a crystal meth addict, a rewired spook, a nookla spy, any other useful tool, or even a female of the feminine kind, but, please, do not send a .... you know, a ..... Well, let me put it this way, we wouldn't send Pat Dodson to Washington."

Ah, cultural sensitivity wins again. Doug can smell that Peace Prize.

Douglas Wood of no commercial terrorist value- ex-partner

I've been out of net range for a week and been proved wrong by hearing about Wood finally getting the chance to meet John Howard.

However it was heartening to hear of his former business partner referring to him as a charlatan with no tradeable value to insurgents

There haven't been any "Doug Wood loves a lamb roast" ads... yet

The clever-as-buggery country

Doug and Steve have accepted the nominations, and will front a new National Partnerships venture - the Bond-Skase Memorial Fellowship Trust. This will be the primary vehicle for promoting the best in Oz science. Brendan Nelson, Minister for Rocket Surgery, will award R&D funds on merit, and ratings on the laugh-o-meter. 

Anything to do with weapons, nooklar waste disposal and conversion of CO2 into oil, will be considered.

The Unique Water scam is the template.

P.M.Howard visits Iraq To Give Thanks For Doug Wood

I was away the week that Wood finally shook hands with Howard. In hndsight it has created a precursor for the "suprise visit to Iraq" today.

It's interesting that our P.M.'s  rhetoric is now in line with the tenets of Operation Lighning (see above).

Do Howard's promises of aid to Iraq have anything to do with this job ad?

The types of jobs the successful KBR applicant would co-ordinate will be not unlike the infrastructure work that is currently being carried out by the Australian military. 

Could such an approach be used as an international corporate loophole in order to keep the figures out of U.S Congress' hands?  If not, why isn't the  work being carried out directly from Houston, instead of through the media releases of the Australian Prime, Defence and Foreign Ministers?

Here are some "happy snaps" of Australian/Iraq  infrastructure cooperation

Douglas Wood casts quite a shadow. 

Now we're getting closer...


Please read Halliburton Takes Over 

Douglas Wood: Australian Of The Year ?

I' m halfway through watching a new Australian comedy called "They Could Be Heroes" which 'chronicles'  the lives of candidates for the award.  So far the theme has been that they are attempting to further their careers.

 Please don't tell me that Douglas Wood has been nominated.... or Malcolm Kinnaird.   In either case I am going to hide under my bed until something better happens.           ; - )

Douglas Wood Back In America

Buried at the bottom of the story of the Wood family's morning tea with the mufti is the mention of Doug's current whereabouts

Is he doing promos for the FOX broadcast, or perhaps signing a few book covers? 

"Sleeper Agent" Actors- The Conspiracy Theory For Today's War

If a war was mostly being fought in mainstream media, could actors be soldiers? 

It's the theme of the movie Team America, but needs to be considered over longer timeframes.  Could calcations be worked out to what kinds of characters could produce certain results at certain times. ?

Could they be placed in society awaiting activation in times of a media environment that would render their actions catalystic to the desired contemporaneous political climate?

Such people could be the most effective method of achieving objectives.  Given the massive time lengths that espionage agents have awaited becoming operative, why not " thespian agent provocateurs" awaiting the "prompt" for their part of the "script" ?

When you consider the possibility of events being "staged", bear in mind the possible levels of "stagecraft" available to a superpower in today's society. 

Douglas Wood on NBC Today Show "I'm Proof America Is Winning"

Speaking on The Today Show, "Alamo resident" Douglas Wood said that he wishes to personally apologise to U.S. President Bush.

 Wood's wife has explained her silence during the former hostage's ordeal. “We're a Christian family, and a big American in California, living the
good life so to speak, and I thought I'd get him killed, so I chose not
to speak," she said..

An exclusive interview with Wood is scheduled for NBC on Thursday evening on Thursday August 4. (see the video).

Stay tuned for the next exciting chapter......



I'm glad I kept my coonskin hat, from 1956. It's lost most of its fur, and there are little things nesting in it, but I'll send it over to Doug. 

Douglas Wood Remembers Alamo, Forgets About Australia

T.G. I was hoping somebody was on the ball... "Douglas Wood of Alamo" is now the title we can expect to hear more often.  What happened to "Douglas Wood of Victoria, Australia" ?

Is Wood a publican or a Republican, or both?,

Second Amendment

Doug could do worse (for himself) than to stick up for the NRA.

From Guns in the Parking Lot.
The National Rifle Association is urging a boycott of a company that dares to protect its employees from gunplay in the workplace.
... In retaliation, the N.R.A. dropped Columbus as a possible site for its 2007 national convention. Columbus should be feeling honored, not snubbed, as well as arguably feeling safer. So should the corporations who sensibly resist the dictates of the gun lobby. ...


How about this, though?

From Australia’s own weapon of terror

... Now, thanks to the brainchild of an Australian former grocer, the surviving Iraqi civilians face the terrible spectre of a robot that can devastate every living creature in a hailstorm of more than one million bullets a minute. While the Iraqi death toll has the potential to mount to tsunami proportions, American soldiers can “safely

USA Today Attributes Douglas Wood Release to Iraq Intelligence

The Iraqi 1st Brigade would like a sewage system and a working mobile phone.  However, this article infers that Wood was found through their own intelligence sources.

With everybody claiming the rescue as a success story, when will a final version be compiled? 

Today's Australian reports that Wood's interview last week on the NBC Today Show was an "exclusive interview for an undisclosed amount"

What's next? Maybe Wood can have a beer with George Bush at his Texas Ranch before he starts on the public speaking circuit?

A Tale Of Two Dougies.

Are there two released hostages named Douglas Wood ?  There's one in the U.S., being described as 'hale and hearty' on the NBC Today Show, proof of America's success in the war,having a beer in his Alamo backyard, etc, and then there's the other one in the Australian media- with a renewed Aussie medicare card, nearly blind with glaucoma, quietly fulfilling family obligations in the U.S. before come back to Australia to live... and open a pub. 

I'm confused again... it doesn't sound like the same man in the versions  of two nations.

Living on the cheap

Because of Mr Wood's ill health the couple wanted to live close to public transport and they have leased an apartment in Melbourne's inner-city.

and he 

... still hopes to tell his story on the speaking circuit and he has said that he is keen to open an Australian pub.

(From Blind Wood battles the legacy of captivity).

Adelaide is looking much safer than Melbourne.

But, here's a real opportunity to get Doug, Pastor Brian and Peter Pentecostello into the same act.

Hillsong preachers run $1.3m business


From my secret sources

I believe (so far, I know) there are no suspicious accounts in the Hillsong business, except the god bothering spruiking. The accounts are showing that the pastors live well but nothing outrageous and with their lifestyle they can support more charitable-giving (you all know by now what I think of charity versus social justice but to each their own way of contributing for the betterment of humankind) ... One could start to analyse the accounts of the Vatican for example and see a few skeletons there. In the sixties, the Vatican Bank was financing arms deal to various banana republics and if some of you are old enough to remember the scandals that followed in the seventies, including a few "suicides" from the heads of the said bank... you'd know what I'm talking about... I'd have to research the whole cover-up for those who were too young...

It is ... taxation

It is the matter of taxation which makes the appearance of the politician even more inappropriate. Peter Costello is the Federal Treasurer, the second-most senior member of the government and the minister responsible for all commonwealth expenditure and taxation. That he would appear on stage with and offer wholehearted support for someone who is using a façade of religion to avoid paying millions of dollars in tax and who boasts to the papers about giving his salary away is not only offensive to people who like to see the church kept well away from the state, but also to followers of legitimate religions and the large numbers of ordinary taxpayers who are continually harassed by taxation officials for minor errors and infringements.

From Hillsong Church.

The lord's profits
Hillsong's true believers
The Australian: Property deals at Hillsong [July 29, 2005]
Cut Price Commentariat » Fabian Society Wrapup: Moral Values
Brian and Bobbie - an Australian Story

I know the average punter loves to chuck his hard-earned into unworthy causes, and perhaps the most honourable of these is the gee-gees. I was talking to one of the young 'windscreen washer' fraternity. If anyone should inspire the Hon Treasurer for their work ethic and desire to uplift themselves, it's those earnest poor who offer to wipe our noses, when our humvees are stopped at busy intersections. This lad told me that motorists are very generous, paying folding stuff up to $20 for 20 secs effort. The boys are making hundreds each day.  Yeah, yeah, I know where its going. So, I am surprised Hillsong hasn't 'rescued' one of them from their downhill spiral, passed the hands of faith other him, and stood him up in front of the congregation as another miracle. And then taken over his patch. No invoice, no GST, no payroll tax.

Wood's First Speaking Booking.. Shepparton Netball Club

   An auspicious career move.. September 16, at an admission of fifty bucks.   With no offence intended to the good ladies of Shepparton, Wood's booking schedule can't be filling too fast.


Since being freed, Mr Wood has reportedly earned several hundred
thousand dollars for his story and has now turned his hand to public

His first official engagement is for Shepparton United Football Netball Club on September 16.

"It is a great coup for the club and promises to be an exciting lunch," organiser Geoff Dobson said.

"It continues the tradition of the club in getting topical and interesting speakers to come to Shepparton."


I believe in taxation (reduced) for all... including all chuches...