In 1998, as reforms were occurring the hard way on the waterfront, John Howard set about implementing a long held wish to reform the Australian Tax System while the US President was brought to the brink of disaster by his own actions and a 77 year old hero proved that age is no barrier to the determination of individual achievement.

1998 was the year where:

– Scarborough Marina appointed as a customs and quarantine facility

– Extensions to the Redcliffe Hospital (including a helipad and intensive care wing) are completed

– The new cinema multiplex at Kippa Ring opens to the public

– Rolling blackouts engulf Brisbane and the greater South East after generator breakdowns at 4 major coal-fired power stations

– The Maritime Union of Australia stages the largest industrial dispute seen in this country after Patrick Corporation sack 2000 dock workers for inefficiency. A compromise is eventually reached where the jobs are re-instated in exchange for efficiency improvements

– Peter Beattie becomes Premier of Qld in a minority Government after Pauline Hanson’s One Nation party scores 23% of the popular vote and 11 seats in Parliament

– John Howard is re-elected in the Federal election despite losing the popular vote

– Fox Studios Australia opens in Sydney

– Mark Taylor equals Don Bradman’s record test score of 334 runs, retiring his innings upon reaching that milestone

– The Good Friday Accord is reached in Ireland

– Europeans agree on a single currency, the Euro

– Indonesian dictator Suharto steps down after 32 years in power

– Former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet is arrested in London

– US President Bill Clinton denies having an affair with Monica Lewinsky. He is later impeached by the House of Reps

– 77 year old former astronaut John Glenn returns to orbit in the space shuttle Discovery on his last mission

The Thin Red Line, Bulworth, There’s Something About Mary, The Truman Show, Rushmore and The Big Lebowski are released

Deaths: Sonny Bono (5 January), Frank Sinatra (14 May), Akira Kurosawa (6 September), Florence Griffith Joyner (21 September)