A number of recent articles in various online media sites really began to annoy me due to the manner in which various subjects were presented. It’s not bad enough that we are fed constant propaganda by the media on all manner of issues, but it’s worse when these issues are distorted so that it leads people to believe that what is being said is the absolute truth of the matter. As always, ‘experts’ are being quoted as having done some form of research and then come to the conclusion that fits the latest impending calamity, the favourite driver of our nanny state adherents. It doesn’t matter what the subject is, as long as it follows the approved thought, it’ll be made to look good; but if it follows non-approved thoughts, it’ll be made to look bad. Sometimes there’s no attempt to even make the so-called research or reporting appear unbiased, assuming a complete reliance on people not being capable of critical analysis.
There’s an old saying that go along the lines of ‘We deserve the politicians that we get’. Basically we vote in the best of a bad bunch, or some vote for those who they think can give them the most free stuff, and then complain when things don’t turn out as they’d hoped (just watch the future of the Warringah electorate when the chicken comes home to roost). The Australian way (and maybe the British as well) often tends to be a matter of voting for the individual who is the most popular, but not necessarily the smartest. Hence why so many ex-sporting stars turn to politics, feeding off past glories (we are after all a nation of sporting fanatics). So it’s rare to actually vote for the party that is likely to be the most responsible when it comes to running the country and who will really look after the most important aspect of our nation, its economy. Today especially, politicians seem to be completely poll driven, reacting just to the popularity stakes, rather than standing on long-term principles that everyone can understand, whether those principles alienate some of the population or not. Continue reading
There’s nary an occasion that exists today where some ‘woke‘ Social Justice Warrior (SJW) doesn’t want to ruin it for the majority in the name of inclusiveness or some other meaningless brain fart. This time a school in Brunswick, Melbourne, decided that Mother’s Day was simply too ‘binary‘ and non-inclusive and so had to change it to ‘appreciation’ day. Or more precisely, a stall that used to be called a Mother’s Day stall was renamed to an ‘appreciation stall’. But the intent is exactly the same, remove all reference to Mother’s Day because it’s considered extremely offensive. Once again something that celebrates a normal relationship has been erased, at least at this woke school, and the entire aspect of motherhood demeaned. And given that no SJW wants to be left out (there’s a pun there), I’m certain that this move will be followed by many more woke schools and whatnot in the name of inclusiveness.
After 45 years of daily drinking (alcohol that is), I’ve suddenly stopped cold. Why? I don’t know, but first some history. When I started university in the early 70s, I was a residential student at Monash University and the orientation day involve the consumption of copious quantities of alcohol, all for free. Naturally I made full use of this and paid the penalty many hours later. It wasn’t the first time that I’d had alcohol, but it certainly was the first time that I’d had it in such a large quantity, at a continuous pace and in such a short period of time. I suspect that those days may well be over at universities, given the nature of today’s environment where all such things tend to be frowned upon and litigation just waiting around the corner. Were such orientation days appropriate? At the time I thought nothing of it and even today don’t have any issues with such activities, though I suspect many would frown upon such thoughts.
As I wrote in ‘The Nanny State‘ there seems to be a never ending push by government/s to control our lives, egged on by government funded entities (food Nazis) trying to make themselves relevant and justify their continued taxpayer funding. It hasn’t been completely government driven, as there are other groups pushing their own wheelbarrows filled with personal agendas, such as PETA, that wants everyone to become neurotic vegans and live in mutual misery. And given how they behave, it certainly appears to be a miserable life. However, a new entrant has entered the scene by way of The Lancet, who has now declared their own set of rules as to how the world (notably the western world) should, or must, live in order to save the planet from every perceived misery, including the mandatory climate-change baggage-carousel. These professional misery merchants seem to be appearing everywhere with the intent to force people into lifestyles these same misery merchants invariably never have to live themselves, given their positions of wealth.
My wife recently came home with a box of children’s books that she picked up from our local op shop; books dating back to the last century and ones that you’d likely never see published again (not in this lifetime anyway). Both of us find something enjoyable about these old books that come from a more innocent era when they were written with no offence intended, no double meanings and written for pure joy and entertainment. It was a time when boys could be boys and girls could be girls, living adventures that they found within these books when televisions were few and far between, mobile phones weren’t even imagined and computer games non-existent. I wrote about this some time ago and this collection of books made me revisit that story with a short update and some new thoughts.
Being a dog owner for nearly 40 years and having grown up with dogs since a toddler, one of the things that always amuses me are articles extolling the latest research where intrepid scientists breathlessly announce that their research shows that dogs are not very intelligent. Their view is that we are anthromorphising when we treat our dogs like furry kids and insist that they understand us emotionally as well vocally (or verbally). I’m pretty much convinced that these ‘scientists’ have never owned a dog (more likely a cat) and have some sort of aversion to dogs to come up with these sorts of ‘scientific’ results. Everyone that I know who owns a dogs, or has owned a dog, can tell stories of how their dog shows clear and unambiguous understanding of not just words, but of emotions, and can even anticipate the actions of their owners. Some of this may of course be a Pavlov’s Dog conditioning case, but in my view there’s a lot more to this than what many would admit.
The other day I received a comment (which I deleted) stating that my blog wasn’t compliant with Australian human rights legislation and that it wasn’t compatible with screenreaders (it certainly was with the ones that I’ve tested). What bothered me was the tone of the comment, an ostensibly threatening tone citing Australia’s anti-discrimination laws, rather than taking a conciliatory approach more clearly explaining the issues. That it came from a gmail account was warning enough. I suspected that this was a spam comment, though this one must have had a human behind it as it passed the CAPTCHA test. As it turns out, this was indeed another instance of spam, as it appears that it’s being sent to numerous other websites, with exactly the same wording, same name and apparently originates in the US. That’s by the by, as it does raise an interesting point and gave me an opportunity to investigate anti-discrimination legislation and discuss its real world applications and implications in our electronic age.
As the transgender debate rolls on and society comes to grips with the concept that men can be women and women can be men, and everything in between, the world of sports has also had to adjust to these new social norms. As a result, transgender men are increasingly featuring in all manner of competitive sports traditionally associated with people genetically disposed as women, up to and including the Olympics. Now the Olympics is the pinnacle of world sporting events, so lately there’s been an extra level of scrutiny and science applied when it comes to women who were traditionally men and wishing to enter the various competitions. However, that’s not the case with many other sporting events at lower levels of competition, so things can get a little difficult when it comes to sorting the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. This has caused some consternation.
I can still remember a row of shops in Footscray, where I lived as a kid in the late 50s, early 60s, that had a milk bar, green grocer, butcher, fish and chip shop, newsagent etc. Everything that the family needed was walking distance away and I can’t remember a single supermarket back in those days. I do remember the Footscray markets where we often went to get stuff that wasn’t available in our local Australian shops. The Footscray markets back in those days was predominantly run by Italian migrants, before the Greeks took over and then the Vietnamese, who still appeared to have a strong presence. But a fire in Dec 2016 gutted the market, though as with everything, it now looks like becoming housing. I can’t even remember the first supermarket that arrived in our area or where, but over the decades, the big two supermarkets Coles and Woolworths (nee Safeway) and then 711, slowly destroyed every single corner shop, be it a milk bar, green grocer or butcher in Melbourne.