Archive for the ‘politics’ Category
I have disliked The [not-so] Hon Julie Bishop for quite some time. Firstly, the wall outside her Subiaco office makes me want to gag every time I drive up Rokeby Rd. Then there’s the whole Liberal Woman oxymoron thing where she, like Gov Sarah Palin, takes the cause of women 50-bajillion steps back every time she steps out in her Linney’s.
As if her policies and incompetence weren’t bad horrible atrocious enough, she goes and does THIS during question time:
OH. MY. EFFING. GOODNESS.
And then —– and then her “justification” for this lameness (which will surely give me nightmares tonight; sorry for posting it, actually)???
“When people are carrying on in question time and getting really personal and vicious, it’s just a little thing that I do,” she said.
“It’s sort of suggesting that the girls should put the claws away.” [News]
It’s “A LITTLE THING” you do for “THE GIRLS”????????????
GREAT WORK, you pretentious brat, now everyone’s just going to say that female politicians can never rise above the petty squabbles they have across the leafy courtyards in their obnoxious private schools!!!!! (The day I vowed never, ever, to enter politics was the day we had a fake election in Year 10 Social Studies. Oh, the humanity.)
There was a comment on the news article going “oh, right, so can guys punch each other in Parliament now”? And seriously, that’s what this takes us to. Redicularity.
I am so embarrassed I share the same two types of chromosomes with this person. SO EFFING ASHAMED.
Can anyone confirm that she’s actually a she? I still have hope. No honest woman would use that much hairspray and fanny about like THAT much of a queen, right??? Please? I’m begging.
During lunch this afternoon I listened to the podcast of Julian Burnside (he’s a “top human rights barrister”!) and Gerry Simpson (professor of international law at the London School of Economics) talk about war crimes and international law at the Melbourne Writers’ Festival. You can watch/listen online via to the ABC Fora TV site, which I totally recommend you do because I can’t be bothered writing out all the interesting discussion about the history of international law and victors’ justice and such.
However, I wanted to post a link to this article from Harper’s (the awesome American one, not the snooty Australian Bazzar one) if we might soon see a Ticket to The Hague for Dick Cheney? Most amusing was the reference to the report that the PBS network
found that it had no network space for [the documentary] Torturing Democracy until January 20, 2009—the day the Bush Administration decamps from Washington.
I wish our dollar wasn’t so shit so that I could subscribe to Harper’s and read this month’s cover story ‘JUSTICE AFTER BUSH: Prosecuting an Outlaw Administration’, but I’ll have to wait til Borders gets that issue in in June 😛
I am now very wary of lobby-groups and political parties etc which put “Family” in their name. Because it is usually code for “Tory Bible-Bashing Wanker”.
When I saw that an op-ed proclaiming the net filter as “a great tool to help parents in their difficult vigil” against the Mean Nasty Ninternet was written by a researcher with the Australian Family Association, I snapped over to Google quick-smart.
Their Wikipedia entry probably requires a “neutrality warning” or whatnot, but it totes justified my prejudgment (and I also felt comforted knowing that the AFA probably hearts prejudgment, too!):
According to its stated objectives, the AFA aims “to cultivate within society an appreciation that the integrity and wellbeing of the family is essential to the stability, morale, security and prosperity of the Australian nation”.
In other words, the AFA comprises a bunch of ignorant wowsers, killjoys, and prurient perverts who really ought to keep their pathetic narrow-mindedness to themselves. The cloak of respectability called “family values” is made of transparent fabric, and barely conceals the stench of hypocrisy. (emphasis added)
But, aside from that amusing description, an old news story in the Google results drew my eye, too.
Apparently, Teh AFA once thought that “a ban on smacking children is going too far” and believed:
… to introduce laws which mean the Government has a role to play in deciding who and who isn’t a good parent, we think that’s going too far.
Um. I’m sorry. WHAT?!
So…………… firstly: those laws about, like, taking kids away from abusive parents and stuff goes “too far”? Because isn’t it the whole point of those that the government goes, “dude, you are a horrible, bogan parent — Step. Away. From the bebbeh”?
Welp. Might as well give them back their crack-pipes with their kiddies, no? Good idea, team. That’s a GREAT way to ensure the “stability, morale, security and prosperity of the Australian nation”.
And, secondly: but NOW they think the government should totally step in and decide that all parents (and, oh yeah, everyone else in the fricking country) totes have to have a filter even if they might prefer another method for educating their kids, like, you know, talking to them and stuff?
Urgh. How do morons manage to gather themselves into “Associations”? We seriously need a vetting agency to stop Idiot Collectives putting out media releases.
The pro-filter article, on how “claims of mandatory ‘censorship’ have been unfair and misleading”, totally misses the point of logic in several ways, and this is my fave:
Should we dismiss the effectiveness of the filters due to the fact that they are not perfect? Most would realise that an automated filtering system will never be 100 per cent accurate. However, having almost 90 per cent of unwanted material blocked is certainly a lot better than none.
Uhhh. Don’t be fooled by the apparently reasonable point. Read between the patronising bullshit and look at what they’re saying.
I don’t think we’re complaining about the 10% of nudie pics that are going to get through, love. We’re complaining about the ridiculous and preposterous proposition about this being an “attempt at making the internet safer for Australians”.
For God’s sake (you “Family” peeps usually like God, don’t you? Cool, so you won’t mind me appealing to his Infinite Reason and Wisdom, right? Awesome), get out of our wombs, our bedrooms and our effing computers.
For more deets on the technical issues with the author’s arguments, see the comments, and for more on the net filter proposal itself, see: http://www.nocleanfeed.com/learn.html (which actually includes like, facts and sources and stuff. Gasp).
Gah, it looks like I may have called an end to my hiatus too early. But we did have a good couple of weeks up-til now, so I’ll count that as a blessing.
Until I have time to pull together all the notes scattered through my several Moleskines (I try to be organised, but I think I am a scatterbrain at heart) into real blog posts, here are some fun things for y’all to read:
- On the US Election front, Marc Ambinder tells us about the physics breakthrough that the Grand Old Party may have discovered — a tear in the space-time continuum that allows one to separate The Real, Pro-American America from The Fake, Anti-American America (Which is Still, Geographically, In America. Maybe):
If you think that’s special, then think about this. Pfotenhauer said that she lives in a place called Oakton, Va. Oakton is located in Fairfax County. Pfotenhauer implied that the country was part of “real America” because it was open to the possibility of electing John McCain. Here’s the problem: Fairfax County, like its neighbors, are in the process of turning colors. (We can detect this with a special version of a mass spectrometer called a “ballot box.”)
- Stephen Fry is Twittering! He’s currently filming a new doco series in deepest, darkest Africa; but apparently they have good Asian food there. Win-Win. He also signs off every post with a kiss (x)!
- Also new on Twitter in the last few days are TurnbullMalcolm, who unfortunately did not beat MalcolmTurnbull (who is much funner) to the better username, and my darling Brit-Brit (we are on nickname-basis).
- The New Yorker‘s Cartoon Lounge had a cartoon-off between TNY’s Farley Katz and XKCD‘s Randall Munroe. Hilarity!
- Speaking of cartoons — if you guys haven’t seen G-G (that’s Garfield Minus Garfield) yet, you mustmustmustmust go check it out.
- The Senate’s Education, Employment and Workplace Relations Committee is currently doing a review into the levels of bias, plurality and fair-and-balancedness (™ Fox News) in high school and tertiary education. Dr Peter Slezak, a senior lecturer at the school of history and philosophy of science, University of NSW, has written a great op-ed, pleading guilty to the charge of encouraging his students to challenge society’s doctrinal mores:
Like regular charges of left-wing bias against the ABC, the moral panic evident in submissions to the Senate inquiry rests on a certain implicit, though questionable, assumption – namely, that only deviation from prevailing orthodoxy constitutes bias.
Conventional views are presumed neutral, and the possibility is never entertained they may be invisibly, systematically biased in the other direction. It follows that the regular complaints of bias and proposed remedies are a form of harassment designed to maintain doctrinal conformity.
However, the highest educational ideals require precisely the reverse attitude – that is, encouraging the exploration of alternatives to preferred, taken-for-granted views. As Bertrand Russell remarked, education should make students think, not to think what their teacher (or government) thinks.
Found any good web-treats recently? Please share!