Sunday, July 04, 2004

Absolutely Last Post, Ever, Ever, Except for Maybe One More 

Right, this is just to point out that I've started a new blog. It's address is:


As you can see from reading the blog, it's basically a way of reaching employers or people who might know employers. Not to mention an excuse to have a whinge about my usual obsessions, without feeling entirely guilty about not looking for jobs 25 hours a day, 8 days a week.
So go there, and bookmark it, already!

PS Notice that this is the 100th post? Woohoo! One hundred posts! We did well, didn't we?!?

Saturday, June 05, 2004

A Voice from Beyond the Grave 


Me again.

Not hanging about for long - this is still to all intents and purposes an 'ex-blog.' But just had to post this: I HAVE FEEDBACK! A month or so after closing this blog down, I've got a wonderful tirade, courtesy of Scott Hillard, who I blogged about some time ago. If you want to get the context, re-read that original post, then come back here to enjoy Scott's response, in all its full, fulminating glory!


Seems you took exception to the underlying premise of my "pro-abortion" arguments in the New Herald. Also seems to be some fundamental flaws in your reasoning.


"... but then he may as well assert that there would be no passive smoking in the absence of respiration."

*True again.*

An entirely separate point to:

"Most people might well find it easier to give up breathing to avoid unwanted smoking."

*True yet again, but this is just repeating what he'd said in the previous sentence.*

Clearly my first point mocks Dunleavy's statement of the obvious - that if you don't "copulate", you don't "populate".

The second sentence you quote asserts that there is no way the vast bulk of people will be passing on copulation - whether it result in population or not.

Can you grok that?

You also seem to confuse "pro-abortion", with "pro-choice". Mindless anti-abortionists are opposed to CHOICE. I care not if a woman has an abortion or not, all that matters is that she is free to exercise that choice for herself. Anti-abortionists (like most 'ban-everything'
mindless anti-x/y/z types) really have a problem with empowered people making choices about their own destiny.

Don't like abortion? Don't have one. Don't like guns? Don't carry one. Don't like 4WDs? Buy a station-wagon. Simple.

That's what lies at the core of my letter (made a little clearer in the sections inevitably edited by Tony Troughear and his cautious cohorts) - the notion that you only have the right to choose a course of action for yourself. If Margaret Tighe wants to pray to the Virgin Mary and pop out dozens of kids (assuming she can find someone desperate enough to bed her), good for her. What she does NOT have is the right to try and deny other people the right to choose a course of action that does not directly harm innocent parties, or their property.

So by my "own reasoning", I will say whatever the hell I want, and some blogger who has a problem with it can go back to blogging or go to hell.

Your pissweak disclaimer at the end of your little rant "I'm pro-abortion myself" does about as much to advance the cause as distributing coathangers at family planning clinics.

BTW: I suspect the "denizens of the steel city" had a voice before your blog came along.

Scott Hillard

I suppose I should make some sort of a response, or something but ... what the hey. Go read the original post and decide for yourself.

Oh, and one other thing - I LOVE YOU SCOTT!!!

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Because I Can 

Here's a list of classic books posted by Scott Wickstein and Tex; you highlight the ones you've read. So...

1984, George Orwell Depressing.
The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
Alice's Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Animal Farm, George Orwell
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery
Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
The BFG, Roald Dahl
Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
Bleak House, Charles Dickens
Brave New World, Aldous Huxley (must read this one of these days)
Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh Gloomy Catholic rant. Waugh was funnier as an atheist; try Vile Bodies
Bridget Jones's Diary, Helen Fielding
Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres
Catch 22, Joseph Heller *
The Catcher In The Rye, JD Salinger
Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett
The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky
David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson
Dune, Frank Herbert
Emma, Jane Austen
Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson
The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy "Senseless and meaningless verbiage," is how one critic described it. This book was nominated for the bad sex prize (an annual prize for the worst sex scene in literature); I'm not sure if it won.
The Godfather, Mario Puzo
Gone With The Wind, Margaret Mitchell
Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake Screw this for a joke, if you want to really enjoy yourself, read the real Mervyn Peake classics - his poetry.*
The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck
Great Expectations, Charles Dickens "Yourn a gentleman now, Pip!"
The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett
Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling
Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire, JK Rowling
Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone, JK Rowling
Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling (Haven't read any of these)
His Dark Materials trilogy, Philip Pullman
The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, Douglas Adams
The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien His best
Holes, Louis Sachar (I like this title, must read it)
I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer
Katherine, Anya Seton
The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, CS Lewis Plus the rest in the Narnia series, plus the classic "Out of the Silent Planet" Sci-fi trilogy...
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
Lord Of The Flies, William Golding
The Lord Of The Rings, JRR Tolkien
Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blighton
Magician, Raymond E Feist
The Magus, John Fowles
Matilda, Roald Dahl Another Dahl book. But they're classics, all of them.
Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden
Middlemarch, George Eliot
Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdie
Mort, Terry Pratchett
Night Watch, Terry Pratchett
Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck
On The Road, Jack Kerouac
One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Perfume, Patrick Suskind
Persuasion, Jane Austen Not her best
The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving
Pride And Prejudice, Jane Austen Her best
The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot
The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
Rebecca, Daphne Du Maurier
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
The Secret History, Donna Tartt
The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher
The Stand, Stephen King (Hmmm, must read this one)
The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome
A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
Tess Of The D'urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee
A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
The Twits, Roald Dahl My favourite
Ulysses, James Joyce (Though I've no idea what it says, I like it anyway)*
Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson
War And Peace, Leo Tolstoy (There should be an updated version of this for the Gulf War - called 'Bores and Peaceniks')*
Watership Down, Richard Adams
The Wind In The Willows, Kenneth Grahame Poop! Poop!
Winnie-the-Pooh, AA Milne
The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins
Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte

Monday, May 03, 2004


A barely significant minority wins an unimportantly low proportion of the vote in an obscure Tasmanian electorate. The Green Left Weakly is mighty chuffed:

Socialist Alliance tops 5%!

HOBART — With 78% of the vote counted by the end of polling night on May 1, Socialist Alliance candidate Kamala Emanuel had received 860 votes or 5.27% in the Tasmanian upper house seat of Elwick.

Greens candidate Helen Burnett gained 14.79% of the vote and the Labor candidate was set to take the seat with 59.87%.

Gee. With victories like this, who needs losses? All the Socialist Alliance has to do is carry on with their idiotic economic policies, their hypocritical self-righteousness, and their tedious factional squabbles, and we can expect their party vote to continue to hit record lows.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

More Serious Journalism from a Respected News Source 

Paul and Carl: asking the tough questions.

For All Youse Romantics 

... Achewood has all your romance needs covered.

Scandal In Port Stephens!!! 

Apparently God has been subtly rigging the polls at Port Stephens to get the desired results:

West Ward Councillor Sally Dover told the new Port Stephens Council at its first meeting whether they believed it or not, they had been appointed by God.

Scandalous! Shocking! Stupefying! (etc etc) This God person must be stopped immediately before he destroys the foundations of our democracy!

(Story via the Port Stephens Examiner. Link unavailable online.)

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

As Usual, I'm Confused 

According to a story picked up by Al-Hayat, members of Al-Qaeda working for Al-Zarqawi have been found in Jordan with WMD that probably came from Jordan that may have come from Iraq that may have been the very Weapons of Mass Destruction that George Bush was looking for. Anyway, it's all very important. Read story here.

Uh... would someone please massage my brain?

Sarcasm Alert!!! 

Washington, Tuesday - in a move that has shocked nobody, President of the USA, George Bush, has announced: "I was wrong and the hippies were right. I should never have invaded Iraq. I should have realised, what the Iraqi people need is love, not war. War has never solved anything."
When questioned by journalists what caused this sudden turn-around in policy, Mr. Bush said, "It had to happen sometime. I mean, I've been manipulated by the patriarchal system for a long time now, but last week I met a hippy who turned my whole view on the matter around.
"He said that I needed to get back in touch with Mother Earth, and he was right. It's time to get back to the gentle, nurturing, female values, and away from the masculinist violence inherent in the capitalist economy."
Mr. Bush then invited journalists onto the stage and they had a big group hug.

Hippies have welcomed George Bush's announcement. "It's about time he realised we were right," said one member of Greenpeace.
"Yeah," said another, "War never solved anything. Make love, not war. Man. - Uh, what was it we were talking about again?"

As a follow-up to his announcement, George Bush has released Saddam Hussein from imprisonment and apologised to him for the little misunderstanding.
"You can have your country back if you like, but try not to kill anyone, hmmmn?" he said.
Mr. Bush could not be contacted today. He was too busy meditating at a Buddhist retreat in Texas.

Day of the Day 

You've had word of the day, quote of the day, man of the day, and time of the day - so why not day of the day? Novocastria is pleased to announce that the day of the day today is:

Wednesday! It's just 24 hours after Tuesday, and 24 hours before Thursday. It's wedged neatly in the middle of the week, a median day, a not-quite day, a day that's unsure whether it's beginning or ending, but definitely not Monday or Friday. Ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for - WEDNESDAY!

What Year That Wrong Isn't? 

Harry Hutton at Chase Me Ladies records an incomprehensible conversation with a student:

"How to say [in English] trouser," he asked, "but isn't trouser?"
"Huh?" I said.
"Isn't trouser. What it is?"

I had a similar experience yesterday. Matt, a young kid I know, asks me:

"If I was 22, what year would it be?"
"2004", I reply.
"No!" he shoots back. "I mean, how old would I be?"
"22", I say. "Obviously."
"No!" he says again. "If this year was 2004, what year would I be born in?"
"I don't know," I said. Because, naturally, I didn't.

After some further discussion, it turns out that this is the question he wants to ask: "If I was 22 years old, what year would I be born in?" To which the answer, of course, is 1982 or 1981, and I told him so.
Don't worry, Matt! Even the best of us get up mixed sometimes a little things!

Fidel Diddled 

Fake humanitarian Fidel Castro must be feeling real stupid after holding a real 25-minute phone conversation with a fake Hugo Chavez:

Two Miami radio journalists were fined $5,463 dollars for broadcasting a phone conversation that fooled Cuban President Fidel Castro into believing he was talking with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Joe Ferrero and Enrique Santos, of Spanish-language radio station "El Zol" called the fine absurd and promised to pay a whopping bag of pennies to the Federal Communications Commission in Washington.

Later in the article:

In June, the pair, who host a humour show, managed to fake Chavez's voice and were put through to Castro, who maintained a conversation with the phone-y Chavez, a political ally, for 25 minutes, before the Miami-based radio host doing the voice said, "So -- you agree that your island is in deep shit?

"You fell for it!" he shouted.

"What did I fall for you shit-eater ... you faggot!" an irate Castro shot back, in addition to some choice insults making reference to the mother of the caller.

They were fined for this? They should get an award. There's still more in the article, so go read.

Just When You Thought You'd Heard the Last of the Plastic Turkeys... 

I'm a turkey girl
In a turkey wo -o-orld,
Made of plastic,
It's fantastic...

Monday, April 26, 2004

Spectator Inspected 

Do great magazines die, or do they just go on and on?

Tim Blair links to Mark Steyn and Denis Boyles, who both claim to see a decline in the quality of journalism over at The Spectator, the mouthpiece for Conservative Britain. His readers seem to agree.

Of course, they have in mind the most recent issue, which published articles by Andrew Gilligan, Sam Kiley and Rod Liddle, all strongly critical of the coalition effort in Iraq.
The articles make good points, though many might doubt the conclusions that they come to. Of the three, the worst is the piece by Rod Liddle, which claims that the Iraqi people would have been better off under Saddam Hussein and the Baath party; but then, anyone who has been reading the Spectator regularly will know that Rod Liddle is fond of making such controversial statements, in the hope of provoking debate. He's the sort of writer you read for rhetoric, not research; for entertainment more than information.
The critics also ignore this article, by Michael Gove, which excoriates the anti-war press, or, for that matter, the follow-up pieces by Mark Steyn and William Shawcross in this week's issue.
All this is quite in order for the magazine, which regularly publishes articles containing views contrary to its editorial position. It's fond of controversy and debate, and since I subscribed to it last year, I've come to expect this of it. In fact, the magazine supported the war, though over the past year, they've come to have important differences with the pro-war Labor party. Some time ago, they published a leader titled "Right War - Wrong Reasons", neatly summing up their objections to the Blairists.

It seems to me that critics of the Spectator expect the magazine to publish articles only agreeing with their point of view. But surely the Spectator, in publishing articles critical of the coalition effort, are in fact doing the coalition a valuable service? If it's important to give credit where credit is due, it is certainly just as important to give criticism when something is done wrong.

Then again, it may be that the Spectator is obsessively 'anti-Blair' - but then, what is to be expected of a Tory journal, which has in the past year published contributions by John Major and Iain Duncan-Smith, and is edited by a Tory MP? It's not a magazine you go to for objective journalism; it's more like a weekly collection of 'Opinion' columns.

The Spectator may be many things, but on the basis of its recent performance, it's certainly not in decline.

New Blog 

Tim Blair alerts us to an entertaining new blog, Chase Me Ladies! It's only a week old, but it's already clocked up an impressive list of bad puns, entertaining stories, killer facts, meditations on the state of the statuary in London, and several innovative dating techniques. I think I'll be following this blog regularly.

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