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Showing posts from April, 2008

Dear Mr Rudd, You're Making Me Hate You

First it was alcopops, now this. The Rudd government is threatening to raise the tax on beer and wine 300%. Hearing this, I was so shocked and outraged I almost dropped the bottle. Thankfully I didn't, because I haven't vaccuumed in a few days, which makes sucking Chardonnay out of the carpet rather unpleasant. But this isn't about reducing binge drinking - the government has factored the increased tax revenue from alcopops into the budget, so they're not counting on a reduction in consumption. The whole thing is, as the head of the Australian Hotels Association says, "an outrage against working men and women". (A class cursed by work, and it's nice to hear an adult twist on the ever-ready phrase "working families".) Apparently they are going to tackle the problem with a "shock advertising campaign" - I look forward to the appearance on our TV screens of the Grim Wowser. The Howard government did many heinous things . But they nev

Not Again...Surely?

What do you get if you take a racist grandmother, an Aboriginal woman, a man who believes in UFOs, a dwarf and a jockey? Either a really bad joke, or this year's Big Brother house. It's hard to tell from here if there's a difference. We were promised the housemates would be different this year, and they are - now they're dumb and ugly. The producers seem to be going too far in their attempt to create "diversity". Not that the housemates weren't diverse before - there would be a hairdresser from Melbourne, a hairdresser from Sydney, and a hairdresser from the Gold Coast. But if you're going to watch ignorant people talk crap, they may as well be good looking. Otherwise I could just talk to myself, and where's the fun in that? Last year was the first time I didn't watch the show, due to the sheer tedium of the house, and the fact that there wasn't a single housemate I liked, apart from Zac - and by the time he arrived, I was too far gone. Bu

It's Not Green Being Easy

Sense is prevailing on the issue of banning of plastic bags, at least for now. Australian environmental ministers have agreed not to introduce a national ban on the things. As someone who at least tries to be environmentally friendly, one may think I'd be all in favour of a ban, viewing plastic bags as a scourge on the environment. Well, yes they can be. But...I don't drive a car. The idea that supermarkets try to promote to increase "green bag" usage is that people will leave their bags in the car, so they're always conveniently available. If you don't drive, what are you supposed to do - carry half a dozen green bags everywhere you go in case you buy something? A slogan one of the major supermarket chains uses is "Green bags aren't green if you leave them in the car!". I'd submit that, I'm sorry, but green bags aren't green if you're driving a car. Sure, they may make one feel better, but the damage done by plastic bags is dwar

Back To The Future

Well, John Howard has finally broken his silence, speaking at a Liberal party fundraiser to the bedraggled faithful about the world as he sees it. It was stange seeing him back on TV at first, like catching up with an old friend then quickly remembering why you cut them off in the first place. I actually felt a little nostalgic for the first few seconds, but two minutes later Xander had to hold me back from hurling my steel-capped Docs through the TV. So what did "the John" have to say for himself? It was all there - the exhortations to keep strong in Opposition, the reflections on past achievement, and of course, a hefty swipe at the Rudd government. Hmm. In criticising the Government the Australian people favoured over his so overwhelmingly, isn't Howard insulting us..? Anyway, although Howard promised "I will do everything I can, in a quiet way, to help you", he failed to directly endorse Brendan Nelson as leader, saying instead his role would be limited to

Torching Tibet

There are many voices condeming the Olympic Torch relay protestors for not respecting the spirit of the games. There aren't many observers condeming China for doing the same thing. Maybe that's because China does embody the ideals of the Olympic movement. As said in yesterday's Crikey : "The idea that prior Western Olympics have been held by virtuous nations is laughable. The modern competition was invented by Baron de wossname as a way of inculcating the military virtues he thought French youth needed in the wake of the nation's 1870 defeat at the hands of Prussia, and most of the modern pageantry was invented by Hitler in '36." Anyway, the athletes aren't happy. Former marathon winner Paula Radcliffe has released a statement condeming the protests, saying that the Olympic ideals are bigger than Beijing. Well, surely the fate of the people of Tibet is more important than a few silly races? At least Radcliffe has put some thought into it. Many athlete

Six Word Memoir

I don't normally post much personal stuff here, but I liked Quiet Paws' Six Word Memoir post so much, I just had to do one for myself. Left alone naked by the water I could explain what I mean here...but I think I'll let it speak for itself.

Glad of the Diversion

There are two types of people in Australia - those who say they watch Gladiators , and those who are lying. Even the first time it was on, I could appreciate the sheer, joyful mindlessness of the thing. What could be better than watching grown adults with silly names, clad in lycra, whacking each other with giant bits of foam rubber and pretending to take the whole thing seriously? And this time around, it's even better, allowing for nostalgia since nothing has changed about the show. (If only they'd bring back Man Oh Man ). The thing is, I've always secretly fancied the idea of being a Gladiator. Once you've regained your composure after falling off your chair laughing, the idea isn't as far fetched as it might sound. For a start, everything on the Gladiators set is padded, which is more, regretfully, than you can say for the real world. There could be a sort of "Gladiators Lite" for the wet, weak and weedy, like me. The challenges could be based around

Friday Folly

From The Onion ... Have a partying weekend.

Have You Scene This?

"Children today are tyrants. They contradict their parents, gobble their food, and tyrannize their teachers." Socrates (469 BC - 399 BC) There's nothing exactly new in thinking the younger generation is inferior to yours. But from here, it's hard not to be shocked and appalled by what the next, even worse generation is up to. and it was in a state of mild horror that I read this article from the SMH, about the newest subculture - scene kids. It's not the scene kids look itself that alarms me. Kids should be able to dress how they want; looking back at photos of youself at 15 and being amazed you ever looked like that is part of life. I'm maybe even a little jealous; growing up in the era of flannelette shirts and tencel jeans there were no opportunities to dress up and show off like that, and I actually would have loved to. Surely though, culture is accelerating too darn fast for anything to make an impact anymore. Having been, at least nominally, a goth for