Saturday, 27 October 2007
Dear fellow blogger,
Blogging is great fun and it can also be educational. I’ve learnt something about it this week.
Occasionally I post a comment designed to stimulate discussion on blogs that hold no appeal except for their capacity for the authors to over react. Generally, this generates insults and abuse, and in the case of the more extreme, threats.
There's a very Australian term for this.
This week I posted to a blog called “A Western Heart”, and had the temerity to disagree with some of the extreme ideas canvassed. After the usual reaction, consisting of ridicule, aspersions being cast on my sexuality, and threats of violence, one of the group posting asked what my blog title meant. When I explained that it was my army number, I was challenged to say what my service had been. I hastened to oblige, but found that my comments were no longer being posted.
The lesson, I guess, is that for these bloggers, any opinion is OK so long as it agrees with theirs.
Can I suggest you post to AWH, express a few contrary opinions and see how you fare? You’ll find that as soon as your views start to resonate, you’ll be turfed out.
It’s difficult to tell what these people stand for by reading their blogs. Whatever it is – it’s obviously not freedom of speech.
If you want to have some fun, post to - http://awesternheart.blogspot.com/index.html
and make sure you say something rational. You won’t last long.
Friday, 26 October 2007
Our local tabloid, the Toowoomba Chronicle, generally features stories of local lads and lasses who have done well, school reunions, and local politics (very conservative).
Not a lot happens in town, but when something a bit sensational occurs, The Chronicle sometimes gets a bit over-excited. On Wednesday night, a local policemen shot an individual who was throwing knives at him. This individual is now in hospital in Brisbane.
Today’s edition has blanket coverage – A front page story “Officer Shoots Violent Attacker”, two more on page 2 – “Major has Total Faith in Officer” and “Unexpected Shooting Will Touch Lives of Many People” and another two on page 3 – “Police Support Decision to Fire” and “Neighbours in State of Shock” – 5 stories in all. In this last story there is reference to the neighbours’ dogs (who did not comment).
There is also an Editorial “Shooting at Gatton”, in which Steve Etwell, provides a précis of all the other stories.
I am accustomed to this now, having lived here since 1996. I think the full understanding came after an incident in 1998. I was at school one Thursday morning when I received a call from one of my teachers who had been involved in an accident on the way to work.
He was OK, and wanted to get to work, but his car was wrecked, so I drove the few blocks to collect him. The accident was at a major intersection, and emergency service vehicles were blocking the intersection, so I parked in a side street.
As I alighted from the car, an elderly woman, in her nightie and with blue hair, abused me roundly saying “How dare you park in front of my house on a Thursday morning?”
She was worried that her wheelie bin wouldn’t be collected.
I explained that I was avoiding the accident, and wasn’t planning to be there for more than a minute. As soon as I said “accident”, her eyes lit up and she set of for the intersection at a brisk trot.
Not a lot happens, so when it does, people get very excited.
Monday, 22 October 2007
Am I the only one who sees some irony in the following?
One of the major sponsors of the Australian Rugby League, Bundaberg Rum, has made a complaint against the Chairman, Peter McGrath. They claim he was drunk when he joined a group of sponsors' representatives on the eve of the Wallabies' quarter-final loss to England. McGrath has denied the charge, but has stood aside voluntarily until an investigation is completed.
Isn’t it passing strange that a liquor company has made a complaint against an official for drunkenness?
Dear Fellow Blogger,
As we approach the 24th November, the pork barrel is being well and truly raided. Most recently, we have a promise of tax cuts.
I have a few problems with this. On past performances, any gains to Joe Average through these cuts will be eaten up almost immediately by the inevitable rise in interest rates that will follow once the flow-through effect takes hold. From that point of view, the tax cuts are simply stupid.
A more compelling reason to reject the idea of tax cuts is that we live in a wealthy country that is in dire need of improved infrastructure, particularly in the area of health and dental services for the elderly, and this simply isn’t going to happen if the money is consumed by tax cuts.
There is only one reason for these promises and that reason has most to do with political expediency. Unfortunately both major parties have made very similar porky promises.
It’s time they listened to Australia’s Catholic Bishops. Below is an extract from their statement of August 7th –
“Catholic tradition holds that the common good is underpinned by the promotion and protection of human dignity. Implicit in seeking the common good is the desire to serve the poor, the marginalized, the sick and forgotten in our society.
Political philosophies will address these challenges differently, but substantial action is required if these principles are to be made realities”.
I can’t see much evidence of this kind of action from either of the two major parties. No doubt selfishness will win, and we’ll have to live with the consequences.
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