Monthly Archives: January 2011

World-class lover alert!

No, not me…well, not this time…oh, I still crack myself up sometimes! 🙂 But I did see someone in Mandurah yesterday who would be high in the world rankings, if they had rankings for this kind of thing. I’ve never seen, met, heard of or had any contact at all with this woman and yet I knew I was in the presence of greatness. How, you might ask?

Well, she has three little, yappy dogs, chihuahuas I think, in little harnesses. And I heard her telling someone that, although the dogs have their own little beds, they all sleep in her bed. And they all have their own little wardrobes, filled with outfits that she normally dresses them up in before they go out.

But she also had a boyfriend, a quite cool, no-nonsense looking kind of guy. So given the dog thing I think my conclusion is totally logical! 🙂

Hmmm, maybe this is un-Australian? :-)

Boy, is this one going to be a ramble, I can just tell! 🙂 But I thought, seeing as Australia Day is upon us, I might give it a go. I was watching the ABC News 24 channel the other day (cultured amn’t I! 🙂 ) and there was a guy on talking about what it means to be Australian. Basically what he was saying was that what we claim as ‘Australian’ is simply just part of being a decent human being. And to be honest it really struck a chord with me. The floods on the east coast have brought out a really great response from people but I have to admit that I’m not comfortable with some of the commentary that has been going with it. Just about every official who has ended up in front of a camera has talked about how ‘Australian’ the response is and there was even one guy who said that no other country in the world would respond like we have. Honestly, I just don’t get it. Well, I do to some extent, tribalism is probably something in our genes and I think it is natural to want to belong to something. But I’d have thought that tribalism like this was more appropriate when there was an enemy to be dealt with. Or maybe that is the point, the floods are an enemy and the constant references to how ‘Australian’ the response is serves to mobilise and motivate people against it.

I’m not totally sure why I’m uncomfortable with it actually. There are times I’m proud to be Australian but there are times I’m not proud to be Australian. I think Australia is a pretty damn good  place to live but there are a lot of other great countries in the world. I guess I just don’t feel I need to constantly express my pride. And I guess what worries me is that when we talk about how ‘Australian’ something is we then open ourselves up for the use of ‘un-Australian’, which seems to be used any time someone has done something that someone else hasn’t liked. To be honest they both just seem to be lazy, ill-defined terms. And they seem exclusionary as well…if something is un-Australian then it is something someone else would do…like someone living in Australia who isn’t Australian.

Am I making any sense at all? I mean, why isn’t what the people who have pitched in the flood have done just ‘great’, or ‘amazing’? Why does it have to be ‘Australian’? And why isn’t something ‘un-Australian’ just ‘wrong’ or ‘immoral’ or whatever?

I guess I’m just worried that love for your country can turn into jingoism (look it up 😛 )…and to me that is very definitely ‘un-Australian’! 🙂

‘Hot’ & ‘Not Hot’ in 2011

Tis the season for those lists that come out every year telling us what we should and shouldn’t like this year if we want to be one of the in-crowd. And it got me thinking that, seeing as I am such a trend-setter, it is probably my moral duty to do one as well. So here we go…

Not hot in 2011

– ‘Hot & Not Hot’ lists

….you know, sometimes I just crack myself up! 🙂

Celebrity endorsement! :-)

Can anyone tell me the point of this article? Can the people of Queensland now relax, comfortable in the knowledge that a famous movie director has confirmed that what they are going through is indeed ‘horrific’. Though, to be fair, he did point out to them that water can be dangerous… which was probably something that had escaped their attention! For f*&k sake!

Look, I’m not bagging James Cameron as such and I think any support for the people of Queensland is great. But, other than a not-so-subtle plug for the movie, I really can’t see the point of this article. Or have I over-reacted? 🙂

Freecycle it!

Folks, just a quick one now that kerbside collections will soon be apon us again…Freecycle it before you kerb it! 🙂 Freecycle is an on-line organisation that allows people to give stuff away to other people who might want it. Actually I’ll let them explain it…’Welcome! The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,895 groups with 8,267,898 members around the world. It’s a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns.’ So, if you have something you want to get rid of, you join your local group and put up an ‘Offer’ message…if there is something you need you put up a ‘Wanted’ message….simple as that! And it is amazing the things that you don’t want that other people are able to find a use for.

Mandurah and Perth both have groups…oh and let all your friends know. So give it a go rather that putting it out on the kerb…better to re-use than to recycle! 🙂

A question for you all.

I thought I had scored a bonanza with a couple of recent articles featuring quotes by Gerry Harvey. I thought I had another entry, possible  the winner, for the ‘You have to admire their balls’ series…and if you read the articles I probably do. But then I started thinking…maybe with Gerry Harvey it isn’t a case of him having the gall to says the things he is saying. Maybe he is, in fact, delusional. And I’m not trying to be funny here. Some of the things he has said recently suggest to be that he might have some kind of mental illness.

In this article he suggests that Australia needs a two tiered wages system with people from poor countries being offered jobs here at lower rates that Australian citizens. Now, without touching on most of what is wrong with this idea morally, the first issue here is that it smacks directly in the face of his argument that GST should be applied to on-line shopping to give a level playing field. So he wants a level playing field for him but not for others? But this discrepancy can maybe be explained away by good old greed and self-interest. However the example he uses suggests something else might be going one here. He says, and I quote, “I’ve got horse studs and it’s difficult to get staff. Workers would rather work in the mines where they get paid twice as much.” Seriously, couldn’t he see that premising his argument on the fact that he is rich enough to own horse studs….studs, not stud…might not engender a lot of sympathy? Surely most reasonable, and sane, people would think ‘Hmmmm, want to make an argument for allowing me to exploit people from poor countries…must remember not to highlight that I am a filthy rich’!

Second point in hand is this article, where he suggests that Australian should be happy to pay the extra 10% because ‘Yes, you might have to pay more, but it’s the right thing to do. You’ll pay a lot more if we lose jobs and retailers close down’. Yet you can bet he and his organisation do everything they can to minimise their own tax, they source most of the products overseas,no doubt because they are cheaper, and they have quite deliberately set out to destroy smaller retailers…none of which are really the ‘right thing to do’ for the greater good of Australia. But again, the issue here is how totally out of touch with reality using this argument to get support for his case appears to be. Does he seriously think people will buy this, which would suggest a mental health issue to me, or is he just taking the piss?

So the question I’m asking is whether this guy has some kind of mental illness or have I just totally under-estimated the human capacity for greed and self-interest? Though I guess when the CEO of one of the other major retailers involved in all this says that we should be happy to pay the extra 10% because ‘there’s a moral principle at stake here’ it just proves the case of an article I read a while back that suggests that the best place to find a sociopath is at the head of a major corporation!:-)

You have to be ‘ken kidding!

I’ve decided to start a new series….the ‘You have to admire their balls’ category…which will pay homage to those people or groups who have the balls to do something so hypocritical, patently unfair or unbelievably self-serving that you can’t help but be impressed by their moxy.

I started in with the Republican Party in the US and this corker. Oh wait, I probably started with here when the Mining Resources Rent Tax was something the media told us we should care about. But next is the latest campaign by the large Australian retailers to have GST put on on-line sales from overseas…only 3% of shopping sales at the moment. I mean, poor babies! It must be tough for them…they deserve to have the playing field levelled a bit. After-all, it is going to cost Australian jobs…oh wait, just like their strategy of closing down small retailers has. And whatever happened to customer loyalty…oh wait, didn’t they destroy that themselves by deliberately developing consumers sensitive only to price. And then when these customers find a better price they want the government to step in. Shows how much they really care about their customers!

I just have a bit of a chuckle  when these bastions of free enterprise have a problem and, rather than getting creative and finding a way around it, they bleat to the government. Yet when it suits them, like when they want an end to controlled shopping hours….designed to make the playing field level for smaller businesses…they tell the government to stop  interfering with the free market!

But, as I say, you have to admire their balls!