McCaw to start comeback this weekend

No restrictions on game time have been placed on All Blacks skipper Richie McCaw when he returns from his sabbatical on Saturday.

McCaw will end his seven-month break when he turns out for his Christchurch club against University at Christchurch Park in the Canterbury Metro competition.

The 32-year-old has not played rugby since the All Blacks’ test against England at Twickenham last December.

It will be the first time he has played for Christchurch since 2009.

Christchurch co-coach Daniel O’Brien said there had been no word from the Crusaders or All Blacks management on how long McCaw was allowed to play.

“He’s there to play as long as we need him. Obviously it’s a good hit-out for him,” he said.

“It will be his call to see how he’s going. There are no restrictions at this stage.”

McCaw watched the Christchurch team train last week and will be involved at the team practice on Tuesday night.

There has been no decision about where in the loose-forward trio McCaw will line up, but O’Brien said the club would be “silly” not to play him at openside flanker.

He said Christchurch had a youthful squad this season, with the eldest player in the side, besides McCaw, being 27 years old.

He said the players were keen to play alongside the 116-test veteran this weekend.

“There’s a real excitement level to be playing alongside one of the greatest players to ever play in the country,” O’Brien said.

“It’s exciting for those boys. It’s something they’ll be able to talk about for years to come.”

McCaw’s presence will be a massive boost for the Christchurch club, with a large crowd expected for Saturday’s home fixture.

Christchurch rugby manager Mike O’Donovan said extra security had been organised for the game.

“It’s going to be a massive occasion for wee kids, middle-aged people and older people. He’s got such a high mana. He’s world famous,” he said.

McCaw will aim to build up his match fitness and could be a chance to feature for the Crusaders in the Super Rugby finals.

During his sabbatical, McCaw was busy travelling to countries such as the United States, flying and doing promotional work for Fonterra in Sri Lanka.

He hopes to be back for the All Blacks’ first Rugby Championship Test against Australia in Sydney on August 17.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

An Anzac team? Get real, Brian

Bring on the Anzacs, says O’Driscoll

Maybe the real reason Brian O’Driscoll missed last Saturday’s Test win was because he wasn’t too well in the head – because he’s talked a bit of nonsense since, suggesting the Wallabies and All Blacks could join forces to take on the British and Irish Lions.

O’Driscoll didn’t hesitate when the idea was put to him on the back of the Lions’ demolition of the Wallabies in Sydney to break their long series drought in Australia.

“It’s an interesting concept and one worth exploring a bit more,” the veteran Irish centre said.

“I think it would heighten the excitement for Australia and New Zealand. I think it would make it very special, albeit special already, when the Lions come to tour.

“It’s hard to fight tradition. But you have to be able, with professional times, to change. Lots of things have moved on. You have to answer all questions… and look at the pros and cons of it.

“It’s a pretty special time when guys who kick lumps out of each other every Tri Nations or Rugby Championship get to play together.”

Hold on a bit Brian.

The All Blacks certainly don’t need the Wallabies’ help to beat teams from the north, even the combined might of the Lions.

History shows that.

Brian, you’ve never beaten the All Blacks in an Irish jersey or a Lions strip.

The Lions haven’t won a series in New Zealand since 1971. That’s a long, long stretch.

Come down here and pulverise the All Blacks like the New Zealanders did to Sir Clive Woodward’s 2005 Lions, and then maybe we can start talking.

The Lions are a tradition and that’s their strength. They are an endangered species in a rugby environment that has all but killed off full tours in the professional environment.

Good on the Lions for winning in Australia. It was deserved, but it was also pretty crucial for their own future. They were in danger of becoming nothing more than cash cows since their last series win was back in 1997.

There also needs to be a bit of perspective placed on their heroics in Australia.

They got served up second-class opposition early in the tour and through the midweek phases with weakened home sides.

That’s never the case when they tour New Zealand or South Africa where provincial teams are desperate for their scalps.

And you can add New Zealand Maori to the list of teams anxious to field their best players and play their best game against the Lions.

Then there’s the actual Wallabies that these Lions played. A squad that hardly seemed in harmony and have now lost their coach as a consequence.

But the Lions might have been only a Kurtley Beale penalty away from seeing another tour go down the drain.

Then again, Beale summed up the Aussie attitude, out and about to the small hours of the morning during Test week with his troublesome mate James O’Connor.

This will be a treasured win by the Lions but it didn’t come against a great Wallabies side, nothing like the 2001 team.

Right now there wouldn’t be much point in fielding an Anzac team against the Lions because it would pretty much be an All Blacks outfit. Australian halfback Will Genia might be the only Aussie worthy of a place in a combined team.

The All Blacks are next on the Lions’ agenda, touring New Zealand in 2017.

I doubt the men in black will need a helping hand from anyone who normally wears a yellow jersey.


The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

True Blood recap: Ripped for her pleasure

Willa just wants to ride Eric’s pony but this bad boy is not afraid of leaving a girl dissatisfied. It all goes fairy bad … Jess and ‘daddy’ Bill try and work out a game plan but it’s all headed to hell.

Ask and ye shall receive. It was an episode about being confronted by ugly truths, but thankfully producers ameliorated the trauma by putting cheese grater abs on display.

So let’s rip the buttons off another ‘Fangs A Lot True Blood’ recap.

Episode 4: At Last

Yep, Ben was totally Warlow. A fairy who got turned to become a super-mega daywalking vampire. Totally pinged that two recaps ago. OK, sure, it was fairly obvious – or is that fairy obvious? Ahem – but I’m still doing a little victory dance here involving lots of jiving shoulder movements.

He revealed himself early on, giving a knocked-out Jason his blood. Why not let him die? Maybe that would’ve distracted Sookie too much from his caring, sharing plans for boning.

The V clears Jason up a treat, but of course it does come with side effects. Some are welcome – such as Jason feeling the need to strip off the T-shirt and chock up 250 chin ups in full technicolour ab glory.

Others aren’t so good. One of my favourite aspects of True Blood is how it doles out the hot steamy fantasy sequences well before slash fiction writers on the internet get a chance.

And so we had Jason enjoying a close shave with Ben, nicking his neck then being invited to taste the blood. Just as something was clicking in my brain that “hang on, doesn’t vampire blood make you dream like this?”, Jason awoke with a rigid sense that something was wrong.

Meanwhile Eric and Pam deal with a runaway Tara who apparently was trying to protect Governor Walter White’s daughter by spiriting her away. She’s hidden Willa (finally worked out her name) in a fairground, so Eric goes to retrieve her. After entreating him again about her distaste for her father’s persecution of vampires, he decides to turn her into one. You know, for political reasons.

I thought it was very polite of Eric to take off his shirt so Willa would be more comfortable in her dirt grave. He could’ve been more polite and taken his pants off, but I suppose he was busy. Willa sucked up Eric’s blood like deranged mosquito, and delighted in her newfound vampire status.

However she wasn’t too keen on being sent back to Daddy, who was flipping out that his crack anti-vamp forces (the LAVTF? the LVAFO? the LMFAO?) hadn’t been able to track down his precious girl. Not even the reassurances of Sarah Newlin (so THAT’S what she meant by “I’m getting into politics”) could help.

But then Willa showed up – and they had to invite her in. She demanded her father stop his maniacal campaign, and he seemed to be re-thinking his life choices – until Sarah shot Willa and told him to take her to his “special camp”.

Vamps are being rounded up for camp all over the place. Norah was tracked and felled after revealing to Grandpappy Niall that Warlow was actually the only person who could kill Lilith/Billith; and Pam was taken after Tara did a runner on her when they had another spat about Tara’s apparent tolerance of humans.

The comedy gold of this episode was Andy Bellefleur’s fairy daughters, who were giving Terry headaches by giggling about the violent death he inflicted on former friend Patrick. As they went off to sleep top-and-tail in bed, you hear a crash and bang and “it happened again”, and they turn on the lights to reveal themselves as buxom, perfectly coiffed and made up teenagers. Not a pimple or frizzy, ill-advised haircut to be seen. It’s just not fair!

Anyway, being teenagers, they decided to raid Arlene’s skimpy wardrobe, steal Andy’s sheriff car and go on a bender. There they run into Jessica, who convinces them to come party with her, even though she’s, like, a vampire and stuff.

Turn on the skeeviness as well as the charm, Bill convinces one of the fairies to give up her blood, so he can have his imprisoned-in-a-lab-in-the-basement doctor to synthesise the blood. He of course has some problems with that as the blood disintegrates within minutes of being removed from the body.

Bill’s like “no worries dude, I’ve got live donors just chilling in my crib upstairs”. When the Doc tries to put his foot down, he winds up dancing on the ceiling, with skeevy Bill demanding he finish the job.

Except Jessica, who’s been having a hard time controlling the fairies, loses control of herself and goes all medieval on the girls. Sad when she had been so paranoid that Billith would be the one to be overwhelmed by their tasty fairy goodness. Unfortunately, I’m not sure even enthusiastic clapping will bring these fairies back to life.

Looks like back to square one for Bill, and a whole lot of self-hate for Jess. Oh, and Andy’s on the way to say hello after finally working out where his girls might be.

Sam meanwhile escapes the wolves with Emma and the big-haired LA hipster lady when Lafayette shows up in his car. But Sam insists his short-order cook leave them and get out of the whole mess. Instead, Sam turns into a pretty pony to ride them all away … to a dodgy hotel room.

LA hipster chick was reluctant at first to get involved, but having a massive leg wound meant she kinda needed help. Which is fine, but then WHY DID SHE AND SAM HAVE TO MAKE OUT?!!?

I’m sorry, but I am NOT okay with this development. As a few characters pointed out during the episode, the events of Season 5 literally happened a few days earlier. A week, tops. Sam was deeply in love with Luna. But there he is, making out with LA hipster chick? What the hell, man? It ain’t right. I do not like this storyline. Have some God-damn self-respect Sam and stop moping about after any woman who looks at you, for crying out loud.

Finally, back to Warlow. This all moved faster than I expected, with Jason confessing his strange dream to Niall, and Grandpappy Fairy King pinging that perhaps a fairy could have been turned into a vampire. What, he NEVER thought of that option in hundreds of years of existence? It NEVER crossed his mind until his human grandson got an erroneous erection?

Anyway. The pair head to Ben/Warlow’s motel room to kill him, but he’s ready and immobilises Niall with some fairy light bombing, and glamours Jason into saying goodbye then forgetting everything. But unlike every other vampire, Niall’s blood seems unpalatable to him – you’d think he’d be sucking down a fairy king’s O-positive like a grateful blood bank. But instead he spits it out.

He then takes the prostrate Niall to the bridge and confesses that the pair are related, and that while he killed Niall’s parents, he left him alive as a child so their line could continue. Then he throws him into the hell dimension, or whatever that wibbly-wobbly special effect is.

All of this makes him late for dinner with the Sookster, who found a drop of blood on her floor and realised Ben wasn’t what he seemed. So she cooks him a meal laced with colloidal silver, puts on some Etta James, and makes with the seduction. Ben seems pre-occupied (“We just connected from the beginning Sookie, yeah we did”), and doesn’t notice that she’s fired up her lightning ball. “Get the f— off me or die, Warlow” was a cracker of a line to conclude.

So far I’ve found the Ben/Warlow character quite understated, but maybe now he’s been revealed things will ramp up. As much as I hated Russell Edgington, he was great for some high-camp action, and True Blood needs its trashy villains.

Gore level: Willa’s death/transformation was fairly bloody, and Eric’s use of her cross pendant to spear his own neck was a particularly gothic touch.

Pining for Sookie: Ben/Warlow. Although he wasn’t really pining, just LYING FOR PERSONAL GAIN.

Who got nude: Heaps of people! Sookie got down to her undies, Jason, Eric and Alcide all flashed their abs, and Sam went the full stride pull down. There’s a “hung like a horse” joke in there somewhere, but I’ll let you assemble it in your own heads.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Swan backed me for his job: Albanese

Deputy Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and then treasurer and his predecessor in the deputy’s job, Wayne Swan. Mr Albanese says Mr Swan supported his bid for the role. Photo: Alex EllinghausenA big winner from Labor’s leadership change to Kevin Rudd, Deputy Prime Minister Anthony Albanese revealed his predecessor in the job, Wayne Swan, supported his bid for the job.

Mr Albanese discussed the deputy leadership with his ”great friend” Mr Swan, who he succeeded in the post.

”I’d made it clear that if he was a candidate I would not be a candidate,” Mr Albanese said. ”He made it clear that he wouldn’t be a candidate if there was a change of leadership (and) . . . that he would support my candidacy.”

Mr Albanese was one of several Labor members interviewed for an ABC Four Corners program on events leading up to Kevin Rudd’s return as prime minister.

Meanwhile, union boss and key Gillard backer Paul Howes has broken his silence on the Labor leadership, saying the ALP is united behind Mr Rudd.

Mr Howes was a prominent supporter of Julia Gillard when she toppled Mr Rudd as Labor leader in 2010, and steadfastly supported her despite bad polling until she was deposed last month.

Speaking publicly for the first time since the leadership coup, the Australian Workers’ Union (AWU) national secretary said it was ”clear the party was uniting behind Kevin Rudd’s leadership”.

”That’s a good thing,” he told the Seven Network on Tuesday morning.

”There’s a lot at stake in 2013 for what the Labor movement stands for . . . and Labor needs to be united to have a fighting chance in this election,” Mr Howes said.

He said he hadn’t spoken to Mr Rudd since he became prime minister, but would if the opportunity arose.

The AWU boss denied snubbing an invitation to attend a barbecue with Mr Rudd, saying he couldn’t attend because of ”personal commitments”.

”Sometimes personal commitments and your personal life means that even prime ministers have to take a lesser level of priority,” he said.

Mr Howes said he didn’t consider the decision to remove Mr Rudd as Labor leader in 2010 a mistake.

”I’m proud that I personally and that our union supported Julia Gillard’s leadership, I don’t think that was the wrong call.”

Mr Albanese also told the program that he was surprised the ballot went ahead.

”If I thought I was going to be part of a caucus ballot for leader and then a candidate for deputy prime minister I probably wouldn’t have been on the football field in the early hours of that very cold Canberra morning,” he said.

He had played in the federal members of parliament state of origin touch football match that morning.

”I was not expecting there to be a ballot that day,” Mr Albanese said.

A loser from the change to Mr Rudd, former education minister Peter Garrett, said the behaviour of Labor caucus members during the recent leadership coup has undermined the integrity of Australian politics.

The former rock star and staunch supporter of former prime minister Julia Gillard told Four Corners that he accepted the final result of the caucus ballot that ousted her.

But Mr Garrett, who has stepped down from the ministry and will retire from politics at the election, said the process had been ”corrosive” in terms of respect and integrity for politics.

”We see a great deal of activity and behaviour which ultimately is lessening . . . the integrity of the institutions that we’re serving,” Mr Garrett said.

He said he entered politics hoping to raise standards.


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The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

GALLERY: Carjacking on camera

A SUSPECT who threatened a motorist with a knife and ordered him to speed away from police during a dramatic pursuit and carjacking has been caught on camera.

The wanted man had already led police on a pursuit, crashed a stolen car into another vehicle carrying an elderly couple and twice pulled a knife on an off-duty officer.

But possibly his most brazen and serious crime was when he jumped into the passenger seat of a Land Rover Defender and threatened to stab the 36-year-old driver if he did not speed away from chasing police.

The drama began about 3.30pm on Sunday when a highway patrol tried to pull over a Honda Prelude car at Jesmond for speeding.

The driver sped off and checks revealed the vehicle had been stolen from Lake Munmorah and its driver had failed to pay for fuel at Killarney Vale.

As the pursuit arrived at Hexham, the Honda crashed into another car with an elderly couple inside before careering into a tree near the Hunter River. The couple were taken to John Hunter Hospital with minor injuries.

The suspect ran away, only to be tackled by an off-duty officer on whom he pulled a knife, wrestled free and attempted to swim across the Hunter River to Ash Island.

He turned back to the embankment and broke free of a second altercation with the officer before getting into the passenger side of the Land Rover and ordering the driver to ‘‘evade police’’.

The pair travelled towards Maitland before the driver was able to escape near Ashtonfield. He suffered a minor leg injury.

Newcastle City detectives last night released security vision from the Lake Munmorah service station, where the stolen car was filled up and its occupant paid for fuel.

The wanted man from the carjacking is described as being of Caucasian appearance, aged in his mid to late 20s, about 175 centimetres tall, with a fair and freckled complexion, and short-cut red hair.

Information should be forwarded to Newcastle City detectives on 49290999 or Crime Stoppers on 1800333000.

How the event unfolded

1. Honda Prelude stolen from Lake Munmorah

2. Suspect fails to pay for fuel at a Killarney Vale service station

3. Prelude detected speeding at Jesmond and police pursuit begins

4. Car travels onto wrong side of New England Highway at Hexham and collides with car with elderly couple on board

5. Man wrestles with off-duty police officer before diving into Hunter River to swim to Ash Island

6. Returns to bank to again scuffle with officer and threatens him with knife

7. Suspect carjacks a Land Rover Defender and threatens 36-year-old male driver with knife and demands he drive off

8. Land Rover driver jumps clear of car as it slows near intersection with South Seas Drive at Ashtonfield

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

Images from CCTV footage of the stolen car at the petrol station.

The Land Rover involved in the carjacking.

Orica-GreenEDGE vows to continue form


Tour site

The Australian Orica-GreenEDGE team will not let their focus at the Tour de France slip, pledges head sports director Matt White.

After a hugely successful first nine days, the team’s race will be given the thumbs up no matter what happens before the finish on Sunday week. With two stage wins (stage three by Simon Gerrans and the stage four team time-trial) and four days defending the yellow leader’s jersey worn by Gerrans and South African Daryl Impey, the Orica-GreenEDGE team has been one of the success stories up to Monday’s rest day.

It would be easy for the team to lose its edge, now that their goal of a stage win has been achieved. However, White, says otherwise, telling Fairfax Media: “You’ll find we haven’t lost any of that. We had Simon Clarke (attack in stage 9).

“Mentally, nothing has changed because, as an organisation, we haven’t changed either. We have gone about our business.

“It’s a beautiful way to celebrate a victory, a team time trial, because everyone celebrates it. Everyone celebrated Simon’s (Gerrans’) win as well because they all played their part in it. But guys on the team are still hungry to win. There are more opportunities for all of them.”

White believes the team was judged too harshly on its Tour debut last year, even though they didn’t win a stage as had been hoped.

“It was a massive result for the organisation and a monumental result for Australian cycling to win the team time trial and for Simon (Gerrans) to be the first Australian in an Australian team to win a stage – and for us to put him in yellow by winning the team time trial,” White said of this year’s race so far.

“But I think we were judged unfairly on our Tour (last year). We weren’t duds. We didn’t win anything, but nor did 12 other teams and we were a start-up team.

“Personally we were disappointed (not to win a stage) because that’s the mark we set, but as an organisation we weren’t disappointing.”

While Orica-GreenEDGE won 33 races in its first season last year and have more than 20 so far this year, White believes the success of a team should not be depend solely on how many wins it accrues, but also how active it is in a race, and how often their riders place high or vye for the win.

“In cycling, you’ll lose more than you win. A team races more than 200 days a year,” White said. “When I was at Garmin (as a sports director), it took four years to win a stage of the Tour. And in sprinting, the difference between winning and losing can be very small.

“When you look at the statistics, we did feature in a lot of stages of the Tour  (last year). We all have to deal with criticism when its fair. “Professional sport is a business, so we are here to perform and for our sponsors, and last year we did; but we didn’t get that win we were looking for.”

White is confident Orica-GreenEDGE will make best of its opportunities when the Tour resumes on Tuesday for the 197km 10th stage from Saint Gildas des Bois to Saint Malo in Brittany. The stage is largely flat and should suit sprinters’ teams like Orica-GreenEDGE.

All their resources will be put behind Australian sprinter Matt Goss in his bid to break a winning drought dating back to March when he won stage two of the Tirreno-Adriatico race.

The sprinters will also get more opportunities after Wednesday’s stage 11 time-trial on Thursday and Friday.

As pressure mounts on Goss for a stage win at the Tour, White says the Tasmanian is in better form now than he was at the Tour start.

“‘Gossy’ left the Pyrenees (on Sunday) better than he went in to them I think,” White said.

“He went through a bit of a rough patch through the first few days of the Tour. But he handled that stage (on Sunday) quite well.

“There are a couple of stages that suit him more than others this week.

“We will still be 100 per cent behind helping him out. His personal goal is to win a stage here and we will be will be supporting him.”

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Lexus launches new compact sedan range


LEXUS has launched a solid attack on the lower end of the Australian luxury car market with a new IS compact sedan range to battle Audi, Mercedes-Benz and BMW.

The new model, the third generation for the IS, presents as the most complex compact range for the company in Australia since the car first launched here in 2000.

With petrol-electric hybrid and regular petrol engines across sport and luxury models the newcomer offers buyers a total of eight variants starting with a 2.5 litre V6 engine for the IS250, a 2.5 litre, four-cylinder and battery-powered electric motor for the IS300h and a 3,5 litre V6 for the IS350.

Chief engineer for the IS project, Junichi Furuyama, said his key aim for the new model was to make it a “fun car” to drive.

As part of the development project, Lexus built 350 IS prototypes and covered 1.6 million kilometres in testing around the world.

He said while a lot of work had gone into styling the cars’ exterior and interior just as much work had gone into streamlining it to help achieve maximum fuel efficiency. The work included a stepped underbody panel, aerodynamic fins underneath the car and even grooves on the insides of the wheel arches to maximise airflow.

The new design means the car is marginally bigger than its predecessor with most of the size gains translating into increased interior room and boot space. The hybrid car, the first IS hybrid in the history of the model, had the battery pack mounted horizontally beneath the boot floor so that a conventional split/fold rear seat could be fitted. Because of that the hybrid gets a 450 litre boot, just 30 litres smaller than the two V6-engined cars.

For Sean Hanley, installed as the head of Lexus Australia just three months ago, the new IS range is a whole new pitch at a strengthening market segment.

“Never in the history of Lexus have we been in the position to launch such a competitive car,” he said. “I think people will be attracted to this car.”

Pricing for the new IS range starts at $55,900 for the IS250 Luxury and peaks at $84,000 for the IS350 Sports Luxury. Standard features across the range includes satellite navigation, a reversing camera, a pedestrian-safe bonnet, keyless entry and start, heated and ventilated front seats, a digital radio and high intensity bi-xenon headlights.

• Read Brent Davison’s comprehensive report on the new Lexus IS range in Saturday’s Motoring.

SAME NAME, NEW FACE: Lexus has given its third-generation IS range a complete wheels-up rework, creating an eight-car family that includes a hybrid variant.

Governor ‘Oops’ Perry calls time in Texas


Rick Perry’s timeline

It was perhaps the most awkward few moments of televised political debate in recent US history, ending with a long pause and one word so memorable that it has entered the political lexicon: “Oops.”

Rick Perry, Texas’s longest-serving governor and the man who bowed out of the 2012 Republican primaries with a live-TV brain freeze, has announced he will not make another bid for the State House, stoking speculation he plans to focus on the 2016 presidential race once his gubernatorial term ends in 2014.

Perry was elected lieutenant governor in 1998 with the backing of the then governor George W Bush whom he succeeded as governor when Bush was confirmed as president in December 2000 after weeks of wrangling over the vote count.

“The time has come to pass on the mantle of leadership,” Perry said at a news conference earlier today at a Caterpillar dealership in San Antonio owned by Peter Holt, one of his top financial supporters and the chairman and CEO of the San Antonio Spurs.

He said he would make announcements about his future, “in due time and I will arrive at that decision appropriately.” He has recently rehired Mark Miner, who worked on his 2012 presidential bid.


Perry governed in a conservative populist style, campaigning against Barack Obama’s sweeping health plan dubbed ‘‘Obamacare’’, and embracing the Tea Party movement after it emerged as a political force in 2009.  He presided over a state economy buoyed by an oil boom and stripped away corporate taxes and regulations.

He is famous for his enthusiastic support of the death penalty, executing 261 death row inmates so far, more than any other governor in modern history.

In his book Fed Up!, a treatise against the federal government, he wrote, “If you don’t support the death penalty and citizens packing a pistol, don’t come to Texas.”

In fitting with his state’s ardent support of the Second Amendment right to bear arms, while jogging in 2010 he pulled a laser-sighted pistol from his running shorts and shot a coyote he said was menacing his daughter’s dog.

In 2012 he led polls for a time during his bid to win the Republican nomination as candidate for president when his campaign went off the rails.


His popularity plunged after he said it would be heartless not to offer college tuition assistance to the children of illegal immigrants, and collapsed after his disastrous performance in a candidates debate.

Perry had set out to list the three major federal government departments he would scrap should he become president.

“I will tell you, it is three agencies of government when I get there that are gone: Commerce, Education, and the — what’s the third one there? Let’s see,” he said during the debate in Michigan in 2011.

After a few moments, the eventual nominee Mitt Romney offered help, suggesting “EPA”, the acronym for America’s Environmental Protection Agency.

That was not right either, so Perry tried again.

“The third agency of government I would — I would do away with, Education, the…,” Perry struggled on.

“Commerce,” someone else prompted.

“Commerce and, let’s see,” Perry answered. “I can’t. The third one, I can’t. Sorry. Oops.”

Texas’s attorney general, Greg Abbott, is seen as a possible contender for Perry’s job. He praised Perry for keeping “Washington in check, working to block an intrusive federal government from meddling in our personal lives and preventing the heavy-hand of government from stifling small businesses in Texas.”

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Timeline: Rick Perry

4 March 1950 – Rick Perry born in Paint Creek, Texas, a small rural community.

November 1982 – Marries Anita Thigpen. The couple is still married and have two adult children.

November 1984 – Elected to Texas House of Representatives as a Democrat.

September 1989 – Switches party affiliation to Republican after he is denied a powerful legislative post.

November 1990 – Wins upset victory as Texas Agricultural Commissioner with the help of then little-known political adviser Karl Rove.

November 1998 – Elected Lieutenant Governor with backing from then-Governor George W. Bush.

December 2000 – Becomes Governor of Texas after George W. Bush is confirmed as the winner of the 2000 presidential election.

November 2002 – Wins first full term in office.

November 2006 – Wins a second term in office with only 39 percent of the vote in a crowded field.

February 2010 – While jogging, Perry uses a laser-sighted pistol to kill a coyote he says was menacing his daughter’s dog.

November 2010 – Wins unprecedented third term as governor of Texas.

13 August 2011 – Announces his presidential campaign during a visit to South Carolina.

22 September 2011 – Says, “I don’t think you have a heart” to Republicans who challenge the Texas policy of offering in-state college tuition to the children of illegal immigrants. A front-runner for the GOP nomination at the time, Perry’s popularity immediately sinks among the Republican faithful and never recovers.

9 November 2011 – During a debate with other GOP candidates, Perry forgets one of the three federal departments he has promised to abolish. This “oops” moment comes to symbolise his entire campaign.

19 January 2012 – Ends his presidential campaign after dismal showings in contests in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

31 October 2012 – Texas executes its 250th prisoner during Rick Perry’s tenure as governor. As of 8 July 2013, the number had risen to 261.

8 July 2013 – Announces in San Antonio he will not seek another term as governor of Texas.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Tanilla’s tragedy: mother pleads guilty to manslaughter

Hitting out: Tanilla’s stepmother Brooke Bowen Photo: Stephanie GardinerThe stepmother of a toddler who died on the central coast says community services should “hang their heads in shame” because her family made 33 reports with concerns for the girl’s welfare.

Two-year-old Tanilla Warrick-Deaves was found suffering several injuries in the early morning of August 27, 2011, at a house in Stonehaven Avenue, Watanobbi, and died in Wyong Hospital soon after.

In the NSW Supreme Court on Tuesday her mother, Donna Deaves, 29, pleaded not guilty to murder, but guilty to manslaughter.

Wearing a brown jumper and a collared shirt, Deaves stood and entered her plea in a clear voice.

Crown prosecutor, Terry Thorpe, accepted Deaves’ plea on the basis of “criminal negligence in that she did not get medical assistance for the deceased”.

Soon after Tanilla died, police said they wanted to speak to anyone who may have known the toddler was being abused before her death, after a post-mortem examination showed “she did not die of natural causes”.

Outside court, Tanilla’s stepmother Brooke Bowen broke down.

Ms Bowen said the family made repeated calls to the the Department of Family and Community Services (FaCS), then known as the Department of Community Services, about concerns for the toddler’s welfare.

“It wasn’t just the last two weeks of her life she was being reported. She had 33 reports on her and she was only two-and-a-half. Alarm bells, hello?

“They let Tanilla down. A lot of people let Tanilla down.

“Let’s just hope after this is all over something can change in the system. It’s not going to bring Tanilla back, it’s not going to bring any other children back, but let’s hope this is an example to get them up on their toes.”

In a statement, a FaCS spokesman said the department was “deeply saddened by the tragic case of this little girl”.

But there would be no further comment until Deaves’ court case, and related cases, were finalised, the spokesman said.

Deaves was first charged with being an accessory to murder but after continuing investigations, police upgraded the charge to manslaughter, then murder.

A co-accused, who is awaiting trial, is charged with the girl’s murder.

Ms Bowen described Tanilla as a “beautiful little girl”.

“We never had a problem with her. She was happy, she loved everybody. She was a happy-go-lucky little girl.”

She said Tanilla’s father, Adrian Warrick, was not coping well.

“He’s an emotional wreck. He can’t face Donna at the moment.

“He’s getting better and as long as he’s in the right frame of mind … to get well for himself … so we can carry on and get justice for Tanilla because that’s what it’s all about.”

Deaves will face a sentence hearing in September.

The girl’s family has given permission to identify her.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.