APEC mischief Down Under


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Some breaking news - as you may be aware, US President George W Bush is in Sydney at the moment for the APEC conference, along with a number of other world leaders. Security has been really tight and a big issue for us Aussies, because we just don't get this sort of thing usually. We've been told - this is still fairly scaled down, by US standards.

But the security fences, the extreme restrictions - they've been chafing some of our comedians. We have a mob who do a program called "The Chaser's War on Everything..." sort of like Michael Moore, with punchlines. Only Michael Moore claims to have a social conscience, these guys are more like schoolboys out of control.

Well today they may have gone a bit too far. They climbed into a couple of limousines, one with a Canadian flag on it, and drove through security like any other motorcade. They got within metres of the Intercontinental Hotel, where all these dignitaries are staying, well within the high security fence, and began to pile out, including one of them dresses up as Osama bin Laden. They do all this on camera and whatever they get away with, they aim to screen - although I doubt we'll see any of this on TV tonight.

Our Foreign Minister is claiming that because they were eventually caught (and they intended no harm) that it shows security was working. But I think he's being simplistic - if they had wanted to, if they had chosen to REALLY impersonate the Canadians, a lot of harm could have been done, if they had been terrorists. It has shown up a hole in security. Aussie political leaders collectively have egg on their faces. Nobody has said anything about what George W or Hu Jintao think of any of this. Let alone the Canadians!

At the moment the boys are "helping police with their enquiries". I'm wondering if rubber hoses feature anywhere in the picture...



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I'm kind of laughing, because it's kind of funny. I'm sure glad that it was a joke and it did show and extreme lack in security if they were able to pull it off.

I wonder if we'll get a glimpse of it on our news here. I'd love to see video of it.


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I'll try and find a news clip of it. Undoubtedly there will be something online later on because these blokes will do their utmost to get publicity...

The news this morning - they were all released on bail. The fear is, they could have been shot by trigger-happy security (yours or ours). The Chaser boys are bow claiming they didn't know they were in an APEC high security area - yeah, right. Our politicians are trying to make light of it but they are really angry. Someone polled the Aussie community - over 80% thought it was funny. And yes, I can see the humour, but I can also see the foolhardiness and extreme danger. Apparently even the cops were laughing, once they realised they'd been had, but I bet a few roof-top snipers had to have their blood pressure checked out...

But these boys do go way over the top in their search for ratings and publicity. They use people's weaknesses against them.

Our politicians generally can see them coming, but it's in their interests to smile (through gritted teeth) and hope they don't hate themselves in the morning.

I did a bit of a search for clips, perhaps the best thing is to look for yourself, here is the Wikipedia link.

And I do think this link bears out what I said in another post last week - Wikipedia is getting heavily edited by the people who are using it to promote themselves rather than be accurately reported by it. However, it does include links to their US content, such as a bloke interviewing Hillary Clinton and offering to be her intern...

But I still think, dressing up as Osama Bin Laden and getting driven to within metres of where George W Bush is staying is just a tad foolhardy. They said they wanted to make the real Osama feel very inadequate.

And to one extent, they have won - I think we'll be watching the show when it airs tonight; so will the NSW police, I suspect. They Chaser boys are going to be walking a tightrope between fabulous ratings, and being sacked.

I've just done some digging - here are some links:
(One of our major newspapers)

And the ABC - our national TV station, government owned, which happens to employ these boys (for now):

There are links everywhere, like a rash over the 'Net, but I haven't found the video clip. The news clip at least, is going to be around. It's a doozy. But I thought you'd like the photo of their mock-up security badges - I think there are going to be a lot of embarrassed police.

I do recall one stunt of their in the past was to book airline tickets in the name of Al Kyda, Terry Wrist and so on, then fail to show up so the names have to be called over the loudspeakers. Meanwhile, these guys are filming, waiting to see reactions of both the public and the airline.

So far nobody's been hurt - yet...



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Our news tonight said the Chaser boys have posted their own footage online - they use youtube a lot, or it could be on their own site.

They pulled another stunt today - they again used a limousine with a Canadian flag on it - the only thing was, this limo was made of cardboard and had to be worn on shoulder straps.

I watched Wednesday night's episode (repeated tonight) - they've really been very busy. Apart from terrorising our politicians, they were discussing a report about weapons smuggled into our jails, so they said they wanted to find out just how big a weapon they could smuggle in. They first tried a very large rocket, 2 metres long stuck up the back of a bloke's shirt. Then they tried a baby pram with a cannon not very discreetly poking out of it, then they drove a TANK up to the gates of Parramatta Jail. Needless to say, no attempt worked.
But this is the sort of stunt they pull.

They're now saying they could face up to six months jail time, under the new APEC anti-terrorism laws. I don't think they will, though - first, a high-profile publicity-seeking lawyer has just offered to represent them pro bono. And our PM knows he has to call an election soon, although he's angry at these blokes for making him look like a fool in front of other world leaders, he still has to seem to have a sense of humour and so any harsh sentence for these blokes is going to equal lost votes for our already struggling government.

Our run up to Christmas is going to be VERY interesting.



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I guess - Johnny Knoxville with a political conscience, or perhaps a touch (more than a touch) of the Michael Moores). These guys are less into physical stunts and more into being politically outrageous to prove a point. Mind you, they will prove a point in any direction - they attack Opposition as much as they attack the Government. In last night's (repeated) show they were even satirising political demonstrators as not having a brain and simply demonstrating for the attention (they used the sign-holding premise from an old Bob Dylan video clip). They're the sort of blokes who'd go and interview a stingray to ask what they thought of Steve Irwin... but don't be fooled, they may be foolhardy idiots, but they are extremely intelligent idiots.

difficult child 1 and his mates showed me a tape of Johnny Knoxville - I went to school with idiots like that, they were the ones who set rubbish bins on fire and always on clean-up duty in the school yard. But the Chaser boys - they were the ones who ran the school anarchic, underground newspaper and who kidnapped the most popular teacher for ransom as a charity fundraiser stunt.

Today is the day APEC leaders get their silly outfits - there has been a lot of speculation about what Australia designs for APEC this year. We've been told it's slate blue, gold, olive green. Sounds like they got Ken Done to design some shirts. We'd all been hoping for Akubra hats. Some of us are wondering if they're also getting kangaroo ... change purses. Made from genuine kangaroo - I think the site will censor this. Lets just say the old man roo don't need this any more once he's been shot. It makes a lovely change purse with drawstring - no seams. Sydney tourist shops are full of these lovely items. A lot of the shops don't tell the tourists what they're made of, either, other than - kangaroo skin. A very PRECIOUS piece of kangaroo skin (precious to the male roo, that is).

So watch to see what your fearless leader has been made to wear, in the interests of international harmony. Then comfort yourself with the thought that Hu Jintao is wearing one too, as is Vladimir Putin, who is probably already mentally putting out a contract on the designer. Our man looks ridiculous in anything, he doesn't matter. But just look at their faces...