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Posts tagged ‘Australia’

“Freedom Day”

It’s “freedom day” in Melbourne today – after something like four months in lockdown, we no longer are. From what I’ve seen, a lot of people actually held or attended midnight parties (of no more than 10 people indoors or 15 outdoors, as per the new rules, I hope 😜) to celebrate the milestone, but Viv and I are clearly old and we were asleep at the time 🤣

I have mixed …

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Link: “Robert Menzies wouldn’t recognise the Liberal Party's employment policies today”

Original post found at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-10-03/robert-menzies-wouldnt-recognise-the-liberal-partys-policies/100509358

I’m no fan of Menzies, nor of the Liberal Party. But it’s always worth noting how things we take for granted today as “sad facts of life” like high unemployment, insecure work, low taxes = inadequate funding for the public services we depend upon like healthcare, education and infrastructure, were simply not taken for granted at all prior to 1975. The Overton window has shrunk so much that not even the so-called progressive parties are willing to challenge this orthodoxy now, and yet two generations ago it was the right-wing party presiding over an economic system that’d be denounced as loony left fantasism today! (Also, the right-wing party actually believed in and funded science at that time, too.) Australia in the 1950s was plagued by many other social ills (nationalism, racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, etc.) but it’s not like the manifestly better economic policies we had then were predicated on that bigotry. And it’s depressing that, as inadequate as those policies were (many marginalised people slipping through the cracks), they were still so much better than what we have now.

Currently watching the AFL Grand Final (or the half-time entertainment) with Viv – the second year in a row that it’s been at night, in a different state from its traditional “home” at the MCG, and we haven’t even been allowed to see our loved ones to watch the big game together, as we usually would 😔

Not really fussed who wins, although I’ve been glad to see the Bulldogs wage a fightback to make it more interesting 😆 As someone who’s neutral, I definitely prefer to watch an exciting game! (Now when the Swans are in it, I wouldn’t find seeing a one-sided game with us winning… but haha as if that would ever happen.)

Hopefully by this time next year we’ll be able to see it with others once more 😌

Link: “Larrikins, bogans and bullshit artists: is Australia ripe for a blue-collar revolution?”

Original post found at: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/sep/18/larrikins-bogans-and-bullshit-artists-is-australia-ripe-for-a-blue-collar-revolution

A reasonable demonstration of the dead-endedness of small-l liberal “progressive” politics, imo. Like many other social democratic parties around the world, the ALP has abandoned all notion of the working class, wealth redistribution, or economic justice. And it’s definitely A Thing that university-educated progressives have a real distaste for everything “bogan” (I have to try to resist that instinct, myself!). The Coalition are a bunch of con artists and grifters who are no more real bogans than they are in politics out of a genuine interest in the public good, but that doesn’t change the fact that Labor has basically abandoned them. We need a real working-class progressive movement, like the Victorian Socialists perhaps.

Victoria’s lockdown restrictions will be easing slightly from this weekend(external link) as we hit 70% of adults with a first vaccine dose. The 5km limit on movement will be increased to 10km, two adults from different households will be allowed to exercise together, and groups of 5+ adults, plus dependents, from two households will be allowed to socialise outdoors if all of them have had two vaccine doses. On a macro level, I guess I’m concerned about how much spread will result from people realising they’re very unlikely to have to prove their vaccination status and just catching up regardless… but on the personal level, I’m excited that I might get to see my family again. It’ll be late October before Viv and my sister get their second doses, but even being able to catch up with one family member and take Gizmo for a walk on the beach would be awesome 😃

Twenty Years Since 9/11

I’m writing this post on September 12, but that’s accurate actually, because by the time the 9/11 attacks happened it was already September 12 here. I was a kid, home sick from school at the time, and so I had nothing to do all today but watch the looping news reports, the footage of those planes going into the towers again and again.

My first reaction, really, was that this was a …

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Link: “Afghanistan Cricket Board accuses Australia of ‘knee jerk’ reaction over threat to cancel Hobart Test, makes no mention of fate of female players”

Original post found at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-09-11/afghanistan-cricket-accuses-australia-of-knee-jerk-reaction/100454082

Found this quite an interesting piece, because the journalist has taken the approach of quoting the Taliban-appointed ACB boss’s letter at length, allowing his smarmy dishonesty to speak for itself almost completely. Although this paragraph of added commentary near the end stands out:

There appears to be no irony in the statement that cricket may cease to exist in Afghanistan should the men be prevented from playing; for the women in Afghanistan the game apparently ceased to be played the day the Taliban took over.

I’m certainly no supporter of neverending imperialist wars, but neither do we have to legitimise repressive regimes – and allow them to use matches as propaganda tools – by playing cricket against them 🤷🏻‍♀️

Vivian told me he bet 50¢ on WA seceding from Australia… 🤦🏻‍♀️ What gets me, though, is that the amount he’d get if he won is just 87¢! Something that unlikely and those are the odds? 🤯

Now he’s trying to give me all kinds of further justifications for secession, like: If WA seceded, then the AFL would instantly achieve its ambition to preside over an international sport, because the West Australian teams would now be from a different country. I don’t think anybody’ll be employing him as a political strategist somehow…

a cartoony avatar of Jessica Smith is a left-wing feminist who loves animals, books, gaming, and cooking; she’s also very interested in linguistics, history, technology and society.