Often I receive emails showing amusing photos of mishaps, and each with the caption Epic Fail. I thought we might like to embrace that very subject. I’ll start off with a few.
Over the last week Tony Abbott’s call that people on Disability Support Pension (DSP) should get off their backsides and get a job has received wide coverage and attracted heated debate across all media environments. It sounded to me that he wants to re-introduce that epic fail of a policy, Welfare to Work (WtW). It was a failure in the true sense of the word, unlike successful programs such as the education revolution or the insulation program which are prefixed with the word failed by an all too willing media.
But WtW was a dog’s breakfast. It failed because under this program the Howard Government preferred not to give DSP recipients any incentives to find work, but to take the big stick to them in an attempt to force them off DSP and onto the dole. After the defeat of the Howard Government, Mission Australia – one of the country’s largest employment service provider – publicly condemned it as a failure:
Figures released today revealing more than 720,000 Australians are on a disability support pension (DSP) show that efforts to both stop the flow of people onto the benefit – and get people off – have failed miserably. Despite the efforts of the previous Federal Government, numbers have increased – 35,000 since 2003.
A major part of the problem has been the failure of the Howard Government’s much touted Welfare to Work legislation – partly designed to ‘encourage’ the estimated 20% of DSP recipients capable of taking a job back into the labour market.
So what went wrong? The answer is simple – too much stick, not enough carrot.
So let me see: The policy was aimed at reducing the DSP population by 150,000 recipients but managed to increase the numbers by 35,000 (and Mr Abbott talks as though it’s time to bring the stick out again).
Verdict: Epic Fail.
In 1961 the Beatles auditioned with Decca Records for a recording contract. Decca knocked them back saying:
that guitar groups are on the way out and the Beatles have no future in show business.
Within 18 months the Beatles were the biggest band in the world. While still together they dominated music and fashion for almost a decade. It has now been 50 years since that audition yet their influence is just as powerful today as ever.
The taxes they paid as individuals helped England clear its war debt. And oh how they paid taxes. For each record they produced that say, cost a dollar, they would earn two and a half cents each. For each dollar they kept (earned) they would pay 95 cents in income tax. Yet still they amassed massive fortunes.
When Beatle songs were made available through Apple iTunes a couple of months ago it was predicted that from this alone they’d earn more money in the first three weeks than they made during their Beatle years.
It was an interesting decision by Decca to confidently speculate that guitar groups were on the way out and that the Beatles had no future.
Verdict: Epic Fail.
Radio shock jock, hard head and motor mouth Alan Jones likes to think he’s the most important human being on the Australian continent. To most Australians he is a complete twat, however he has a loyal fan club that includes so many custodians of moral virtue such as John Howard, Barnaby Joyce, Tony Abbott and most of Sydney’s redneck old age pensioners.
They love his verbal bile. So popular was he at being nasty on radio, some television executives had a bright idea of putting his ugly profile on TV. “The racist rednecks of Sydney luv ya Alan, now go out an woe the rest of the nation”. And the good Lord gave us Alan Jones Live, a
nightly Australian current affairs and talk-back television program that aired on Network Ten from 31 January 1994 to 28 April 1994. Hosted by then 2UE Sydney radio broadcaster Alan Jones, it aired nationally at 7:00 pm each weeknight and was repeated at 11:30 pm.
I never saw the show and I can only guess how it was presented. If like his radio program I can expect he was a toxic host babbling on with no logic or reason, but brilliantly demonstrating his anger and fury at all and sundry who didn’t fit into his conservative view of the world.
Alas, poor Alan wooed not a soul (and this show sits in his résumé of embarrassing experiences). On 28 April 1994, it was announced that program would cease production due to low ratings.
Verdict: Epic Fail.
Take this opportunity, dear reader, to tell us about some other epic fails that have amused you.