Hide the sheep   30/9/2003

Amid all the sneering and whining on The Age’s letters page today — and that’s before you get to the Grand Final comments — this beaut made me laugh out loud:

Viking raiders
“Mary of Hobart to marry Prince of Denmark” (The Age, 25/9). Where do these Danes stop? As if a few lazy centuries of sailing to Britain and making off with the women weren’t enough, they now get on aeroplanes, fly over here and continue the age-old practice! Men of Australia, hide your women, lock up your daughters and keep your cattle and sheep out of sight. We have Viking raiders to repel.
Scott Arbuthnot, East Malvern

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Fun times ahead   29/9/2003

First the good news for supporters of illegal immigrants: Howard’s had a Cabinet reshuffle and Ruddock’s out of Immigration.
The bad news: the new Immigration Minister is Veranda Sandstone, seemingly a close relative of Drew Carey’s Mimi. And she don’t take shite from no one, either. Particularly from the type of hypocrites who change the subject when asked just how many illegals they think Australia should allow to enter and go on the social welfare rolls.

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Special delivery   27/9/2003

A gift for all my WA friends should arrive on the first available flight into Perth
I have sent a container to Victoria Park in which the present will be packaged and forwarded for transport from Tullamarine. The sack containing the object may be marked Chicken Manure, which is a fairly close description of the product, but in actual fact the content of the package is an areshore.
The areshore is no longer needed or desired by anyone in this state, but could be of use to someone in need of an ugly little numbers-maker in the West. Perhaps the areshore may be of limited value at Subiaco. If not, well McDonald’s might take the areshore off your hands as a substitute for the contents of their McChicken burger. It is certainly of no use to its present owners and if permitted to remain in its present environment, its weak heart could prove contagious.
Another package containing a Woe Woe Done is Me will be sent to Tasmania. The Woe Woe Done is Me will make some sort of history there by being the first of its type to have three owners in two years. It will be valued there, where freaks aren’t uncommon. The Woe Woe Done is Me is an usual specimen in that its major organ is smaller than a carroway seed.

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Only a game???!!!!!!!   

Just over an hour to go til siren time. Edgy time. Someone once said football’s a matter of life and death. I disagree. It’s far more important than that. (thanks to Alex Ferguson, I think).
The Grand Final means no races in Melbourne today so Magic Mick Manley is dispensing prognostications on the outcome of a contest between 36 two-legged animals and a pigskin. Mick is a Richmond supporter and thus hates Collingwood with ferocity. He opines:

I will be consistent. I will not wish you luck as I won’t to any Collingwood supporter. Your team could be at the height of its already through the roof despisement factor – Eddie, Buckley, Malthouse, Joffa, Rocca (when he got off the plane from Queensland two weeks ago he was asked what was good about the camp – his reply _ “You guys weren’t there.” – he got his right whack and as for your appeal – despicable.
So yes I will be barracking for Brisbane.
Now trying to be objective I have not backed a GF loser in my life and I backed Brisbane a couple of weeks ago.
I think they are one of the great teams of all time and will prove it tomorrow. Check their emergencies – those three would be one of the first picked at most clubs and would probably walk into Collingwood’s team. Also I don’t think you had a good lead-up match last week due to Mark Williams pathetic coaching,
Hope you got a ticket and have a few beers tomorrow and just remember it’s only a game

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nude nut hypocrite   26/9/2003

The frigging gall of it: Peter Garrett spruiking at Slim Dusty’s memorial service. If millionaire tree-hugger Garrett had his way, all those battlers who looked up to Slim when not scratching a living from cattle, sheep, timber, mining and transport in the vast Australian landscape, would be exiled to the city to become in the words of Lawson “sallow, sunken faces that are drifting through the street”.
This pic from yesterday’s Warrnambool Standard beautifully illustrates OS’s point in the comments box.

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Rohit Brijnath brings a learned outsider’s eye to the cultural phenomenon that is Collingwood and its legions preparing for glory in Melbourne in September.

Just being here is like an act of ownership, of belonging, in an exaggerated sense a sending off of boys to battle. It is all quite beautiful.
I’ve seen a lot of strange things in sport, but footy – and especially finals footy – in Melbourne is something to behold.
For a foreigner, two questions are standard here: “Where do you come from?” and “Who do you barrack for?” – and not necessarily in that order.
It’s as if unless a club scarf hangs in my closet, unless a significant pile of AFL Records accumulates in my bathroom, unless I am able to articulate 10 continuous insults about Collingwood after eight straight beers, I am not truly a Melburnian. Australian, perhaps


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invasion justified   

Looks like Dickie Butler is set for a quiet old time in Tasmania’s Government House. Can’t see the Oz Left having much use for him after these sentiments expressed at a convention in Atlantic city last week.

Butler said the obvious and most defining events of the 21st century thus far are 9-11 and the invasion of Iraq.
He said the United States and its allies had no choice but to invade Iraq and overthrow Sadaam Hussein’s government.
Butler likened Saddam to Adolf Hitler and said the evil dictator used the weapons on live people.
“I want to be plain about this,” Butler’s voice heightened. “The overthrow of Sadaam Hussein was justified whether or not there was reluctance to authorize it. … No one could say it is wrong to overthrow a homicidal maniac. The Security Council sat on its hands for 10 years.”
As for not finding these weapons allegedly in Iraq, Butler said he is sure Saddam had them. He said Saddam was addicted to the deadly weapons, and whether they are still in Iraq but hidden, moved or destroyed, they did exist.

Thanks to UK reader Matthew Robinson for the link.

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Vale Slim, from Dave   23/9/2003

Dave Dawson has a moving, meandering tribute to Slim Dusty on his pages at Nu Country.
Landmarks along the road Dave tramped with Slim is the Samoan bikie gang trashing a NZ Willie Nelson concert; Slim’s 1971 Fairlane, Old Purple, still going strong on its third turn around the clock; and tears at the death of an old mate — “Lew was the toughest man I ever met. He would walk across prickly pear without shoes.”
Also recalled is the making of the Slim Dusty movie when a crane holding a film crew shooting in the desert outside Alice Springs crashed to a dry river bed. There were fractures and suspicion of sabotage but to Dave it was just the start of bonus publicity and ”none of it was blamed on a dingo”.
Killer Dawson outro: When I interviewed Slim about Not So Dusty in 1998 I asked him if the recent deaths of singing cowboys Roy Rogers, 88, and Gene Autry, 91, worried him. “We keep ploughing on,” replied Slim who tilled the topsoil 65 years ago with The Way The Cowboy Dies.
It’s a good read.
Oh, and if you’re interested: Nu Country TV will pay tribute to Slim and Johnny Cash, in the series debuting on C 31, nee Channel 3l, at 8 pm on Saturday October 4.

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All falling into place   

Well, correct on one count; Nathan Buckley did win the Brownlow — along with Adam Goodes and Mark Ricciuto.
As to my second prediction, Collingwood have dredged up a human movement expert to testify for Collingwood forward Anthony Rocca who’s on a charge of applying the elbow to a Port pathetic’s noggin.
The expert will claim that the main force of Rocca’s blow was taken on the player’s shoulder and the victim was just pretending he’d been whacked on the jaw.
Good luck, Anthony, but leave the kitbag in the cupboard for now.
As to another speculation, Blair claims he didn’t go on a Magpie excitement bender. Instead he maintains he undertook a cooking binge. Oh yeah, three bottles of cooking sherry later…
Meanwhile, the Magpies are taking it one day at a time, footballers are like sausages and anything can happen with an oval ball on an oval field.
Still haven’t got a ticket. Any ideas?

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double standard   21/9/2003

Depending on your mood, this is a delicious little irony or a spectacular instance of hypocrisy concerning movie maker Phillip Noyce whose filmic fabrication, Rabbit-Proof Fence, won accolades from the intellectual left but indifference from the cinema-going public.
Thanks to Angela Bell (who has moved back to her original blogger home) for the link.

When Phillip Noyce recruited the three girls who were to star in his film, he chose them from outback communities in Western Australia. He found the eldest, Everlyn Sampi, who was to play fourteen-year-old Molly in the film, living with her mother at Broome on the north-west coast. A striking number of parallels emerged between the young actress and the character she played. Both had white fathers who had left their mothers. Neither was educated. Molly had attracted the attention of the authorities because of reports she was “running wild with the whites” and was being abused by the full-blood members of her tribe. Everlyn had reached puberty but could not read or write, was regularly truant from school, and Noyce himself became worried about her return to Broome and the life she would lead after the film was made. During rehearsals, Everlyn emulated her character and ran away twice. She was found in a telephone booth trying to book a ticket back to Broome. She was caught and returned to Noyce, who told a journalist her behavior “makes you want to protect her, adopt her.”
Noyce decided to do just that. With her mother’s consent, he arranged for her to enter a boarding school near Perth. But again, just like Molly, she hated it and demanded to be flown home. Last year a television reporter, James Thomas, confronted Noyce with the parallels between his own actions and those of his film’s chief villain, the Aboriginal protector Neville.

Thomas: Picture this: a white man enters a remote Aboriginal community with the best intentions, takes three girls out of their community and promises them fame and fortune. Does it sound familiar?
Noyce: Mmm-hmm.
Thomas: Are you aware of the irony that exists in what you are doing with this film and the actual topic of the film itself?
Noyce: Well, I suppose in one way you could say that in a different context, in a different time, I’m A. O. Neville promising these young Aboriginal children a better life, asking them to do things that are against their instincts, perhaps because it’s for their own good. But we do live in a slightly different world.

While we obviously do live in a different world, Noyce himself succumbed to an instinct that is as old as the British settlement of Australia: the desire to offer Aboriginal people the benefits of civilized life and to educate their children in the ways of the modern world.

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Universal knowledge . . . almost   

OK, I know the mighty Magpies walloped Port Adelaide by 44 points to go into next Saturday’s AFL Grand Final against the Brisbane Lions.
I know that Nathan Buckley has a damned good chance tomorrow night of winning the Brownlow Medal for the fairest and best AFL player.
I’m aware that Brisbane have had three tough encounters on the trot and Voss and Akermanis are carrying injuries.
Yes, and I know that Anthony Rocca is a big softy and hasn’t a clue about playing dirty and getting away with it and thus almost certainly will be suspended for the grannie.
And I’m pretty sure that Tim Blair has got spastic in the excitement of it all and gone almost a day without posting.
Most of all, I know in my bones that Collingwood are going to bring home their first premiership since 1990.
What I don’t know is where the hell can I get a ticket for the game. Can anyone help. Have money.

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Down the Dusty Road   19/9/2003

The circle is complete, there’s now an Aussie in hillbilly heaven to teach Johnny, Sheb, Waylon and Elvis how you get a hard-earned thirst — You can get it croonin’ a tune, matter of fact I’ll … get it soon — Slim Dusty has died. Don’t think he’ll be able to teach Warren much about getting a thirst.
Oh and belated sympathies to relatives and friends of a wonderful old journo, Lawrie Francis, who penned the everlasting Vic Bitter commercials. Lawrie downed his last coldie couple of weeks back. He’ll be missed.

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on the mend   

Ah, toast, tea, vegemite, an orange. Never did simple fare taste so good. Emerging from 48 hours of gastric discomfort, I vow from now on to pity the ill and be more robust in avoidance of health bugs. Sympathy to the Bunyip and any others recently felled by Club Immortality’s bouncers.
Now to business at hand.
Call the cultural commissar at Spencer Street. The Age has come out declaring that a Third World nation speaks, er, crap.
Go to 11 across of the cryptic crossword: “Pakistani outburst in your dunny (4)”. For the non-Oz, a dunny is an outside toilet.

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Sick and tired   17/9/2003

Ugh, can’t remember feeling this lousy in a long time. About 9 o’clock last night, got the first of many urgent calls to yodel at the S-bend and have spent all night and most of today with the bucket by the bed and a towel on the pillow. The waves of nausea are subsiding but I’m feeling as weak as boarding house soup. Back to bed.

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found him   


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Presidential visit preparations   16/9/2003

Wallace Craig of Midland, Texas, is chuffed that an ex-Midlander, Dubya, is to visit Australia. Wal writes:

Well, I’m glad he took my suggestion. He’s been reading my blog, of course, and seeing reference to you, Kev Gillette, Tim Blair and most certainly the Coober Pedy News [of which I haven’t heard from them since they got back from their opal sales trip]

But………you need to stock up on the hot sauce so go here:


And I’d have your best tamale maker ready. He’ll be ready for some real food after eating that Vegemine crap you people eat. :>]
And some bar-b-que. Beef brisket slow cooked with only a chili powder/salt/sugar “rub” on it while it cooks. Don’t slather sauce all over it, we don’t do that. Sauce to the side when it’s done and cole slaw with fried onion rings. I think he likes fried okra too, that’ll show him you care.
And you may need to take him shopping for clothes. He never was a clothes horse. When Julie used to work for him, they would suggest that he “might want to step out pick up a few new items”. But he’s a Bubba at heart, you might just go drivin’ around drinkin’ some Dr. Peppers.
And tell him that Julie Owen [her prior married name] says “hey” and to behave.

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Not quite all about the oil   15/9/2003

Oh, those evil Merrikuns.

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Bill pays out   

Bill Whittle alludes to the hystericals and doomsayers in his, as always, immensely readable 9/11 anniversary piece.

And at what cost? Did jackbooted storm troopers descend in the night from black helicopters to take away those voicing dissent? Or do the most vile and baseless accusations fly hither and yon, blown ever larger by a terrified and complicit media elite? Did hundreds of thousands of Muslims have their businesses torched, their families terrorized and beaten, the rest hauled off to concentration camps, or are you far safer, both physically and emotionally, as a Muslim in the US then you would be in any middle eastern country – safer and less harassed, without question – than Jews are in France today? Have we given up our liberty and lifestyle for this perfect record, or do we still go to football games and shopping malls and fly, more or less, the way we used to?

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Fight looms   14/9/2003

Stand by for a furious battle in the culture wars on the abortion front. The Sunday Age has published an image which suggests unborn babies smile, blink and cry months before they leave the womb.

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Funny money   

Can someone give this cashier a job at my local supermarket? North Carolina cops are searching for a guy who successfully passed a $200 bill bearing George W. Bush’s portrait and a drawing of the White House complete with lawn signs reading “We like ice cream” and “USA deserves a tax cut.” The phony Bush bill, below, was presented to a cashier at a Food Lion in Roanoke Rapids on September 6 by an unidentified male who was seeking to pay for $150 in groceries. Remarkably, the cashier accepted the counterfeit note and gave the man $50 change.

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