Monday Fairfax Hero!

arleeshar's picture

The new-media work experience kid who put this graphic together is officially today’s Fairfax Hero, a new site feature which will henceforth involve me posting things I’ve idly observed in the Fairfax almost-Press.

So sleazy you can carve him. That is all.

Hands off our union - NUW at war

alex white's picture

The NUW - the National Union of Workers - is currently experiencing an internal dispute over proposed rules changes that would abolish all state branches other than Victoria and NSW.

Dear NUW Member,

Two weeks ago the National Council of the NUW resolved to change the rules of the Union to establish a new centrally-controlled General Branch. This Branch would absorb all State Branches of the NUW other than NSW and Victoria.

This proposal was rejected by the NSW, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australian Branches.

Despite this rejection, the National Office of the NUW will be holding a postal ballot from October 17th to November 10th 2008 to change the rules to facilitate their plan. Ballot papers will be issued to all NUW members via mail in the near future.

The NSW, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australian Branches of the NUW rejects any attempt to take away or reduce local democratic control from any State Branch of the Union.

These Branches of the NUW strongly urge Members to vote NO in the ballot for any proposed rule change.

Any attempt to take away the control of State Branches of the NUW from the Members is wrong. We will not support any change that will disadvantage Members nor will we support any push for a centralised branch that will abolish any State Branch.

Oh Dan Ilic. Bless your crazy eyebrows.

arleeshar's picture

Even the AWU put out a presser describing their anguish and outrage about the title of the 20-seat Fringe festival show, “Beaconsfield: A Musical in A Flat Minor”. As publicity stunts go, this one took some kind of cake, and I credit Dan fully with engineering such a perfect storm. I kept waiting for Kevin “won’t somebody think of the children” Rudd to buy in, but he doesn’t seem to have made it to a mic in time, which is a shame. Obviously Bill Shorten hasn’t yet surfaced from his recent storm of personal issues, or he certainly would have been dusted off and cast out to the waiting media pack for outrage fodder.

Interestingly at the end of the ACA clip below, Tracey Grimshaw ponders the possible further decline of national standards with the potential production of September 11 the musical. Well, horrors never cease, and you’re way behind the 8-ball curve times, Tracey. It was the closing number of the 2002 Sydney University Arts Revue, with words and choreography set to the music from The Wizard of Oz. It was an ace night enjoyed by most, the exception being someone’s parents who walked out but whatevs. We didn’t care. We kept their cash and spent it on spliff, yo.*

* Wickety wa wa.

Beaconsfield Musical
Beaconsfield Musical

Do not get married.

arleeshar's picture

Otherwise you will have to frequent websites which host horrifying, eye-opening, borderline-illiterate tales of one bride’s quest for perfection as defined by a precisely engineered confluence of capitalism and feudalism masquerading as‘typical’ wedding stories and you will want to kill yourself and also grow your leg and underarm hair very long and then kill yourself again:

We are still tossing up if we should get chair covers from a supplier and put them on ourselves to save a bit of money or to get a company that the Sydney Glass Island uses. It’s double the price but hey- trusting 4 groomsmen to tie over 100 perfect bows - Mmmm I don’t think so!!! Still loving the tiffany green sash- not sure if we go organza or satin yet- May even go pink. The carpet is new on the boat and its bright blue so I have to get something that compliments the royal blue carpet.


I also got something else done- something I’ve wanted to do for a while - since they stopped growing. Yes you guessed it. I got a breast augmentation. I went from a B cup to a D cup… My sweetheart neckline is going to look AMAZING!!!


arleeshar's picture

An interesting article in the New Yorker about Obama’s pitch to heartland Appalachia, the archetypal hill-country mountain-man red-neck capital of America, and the campaign venue of Obama’s “pig in lipstick” comment. David “Mudcat” Saunders has, according to the article, had a venerable career marshalling the mountain-man vote for the Democratic party. His opinion is therefore interesting:

Obama’s “Change” message, Saunders argues, is too abstract, too vague, for the region. “Those people you were with today were screwed by the English in Scotland and Ireland way before they came over here and started getting screwed,” he said. “They’ve been screwed since the dawn of time. And you know what? You ain’t gonna do anything with them, talkin’ about change. You know why? We’re all changed out. That’s all you ever hear, every election. Somebody’s gonna change some shit. Nothin’ ever changes. We get fucked.”

For the uninitiated, Appalachia is a region broaching several states from Mississippi in the south to New York in the North, and it has a population as large as Australia’s, and it is characterised by extreme and vicious rural poverty and gorgeous wilderness. It has an intense hold over the American cultural imaginary as a lawless, backward and frightening shadow to the Eastern States’ “light” of culture and creative-industry capitalism and electricity and running water. I have been fascinated by both the place and the myth since I watched Jon Voight and Burt Reynolds crazying it up in the early 70’s film Deliverance, which is set on a river in Georgia and is one of the most disturbing and riveting films I have ever seen, in spite of some bad day-for-night camera work and an hilarious look at Reynolds’ putative comb-over.

More reading on Appalachia:
Vice’s Poverty issue (very interesting actually).
Earlier NY Times op-ed on Obama’s chances in Appalachia.
The Appalachia Service Project - Making Homes Warmer, Drier, Safer.

What I read today

arleeshar's picture

Three articles.

“Confessions of a Sydney sex worker” published in Honi Soit, the University of Sydney SRC’s student publication. Excerpt:

Those who stay for protracted periods of time tend to want to talk. Which drives me crazy because when I interact with adults, generally I expect a level of conversation higher than what I get from dealing with idiots my own age, but alas, they never fail to bore me with the details of their mundane lives; either they have a wife who they cannot share their desires with or they are from an area or a time hostile to homosexuals and never had the opportunity to be with another guy…

We do provide a valuable service though, we allow them to fulfil fantasies that would otherwise hurt more innocent members of society. That is, I and those who I have worked with, have noticed a disproportionate number of clients who want to pretend that they are sleeping with young boys.

“Poxy Votes of Unrepresented Swill” in the SMH, from a frustrated and unsuccessful local government candidate. Excerpt:

Thanks to those folk who queued up at pre-poll and again on the day to vote informal. It could be viewed as a noble silent protest except for the anatomical references and detailed artwork on the ballot papers.

“Can human consciousness survive without a brain?” in the Guardianblog:

Sam Parnia has been awarded a big grant to find out whether the human spirit leaves the body at death – whether consciousness can survive when the brain is no longer working. He, and colleagues around the world, will place an image on a platform suspended from the ceiling of hospital wards and resuscitation areas, so that the image cannot be seen from below but could be seen if – during a near-death experience – the patient’s consciousness left his body.

I’ve come to realise that full-time employment impacted significantly on my ability to spend hours trawling the internet for crap like this. Still, the money was useful.

Beefgate Widens

arleeshar's picture

News today that the inadequacy of the Stroganoff portions at Parliament House is a bipartisan concern, and a considerable embarassment to both parties, with urgent late-night cross-bench meetings producing a united voice for change. Apparently, previous media reports omitted to note that Labor’s John Murphy was not the only MP to take issue with the catering:

Immediately after Mr Murphy had spoken, the National Party MP for Riverina - Kay Hull - added her own complaint, describing the “quality, presentation and availability of food” as inadequate.

Mr Hockey approached Ms Hull in the chamber to reprimand her, but according to witnesses Ms Hull told him to “f… off”.

If Joe Hockey tried to tell me what to do, I’d tell him to “f… off” as well, so, you know, Kay Hull is ok with me.

Talks are continuing with the catering staff to resolve the issue.