Thursday, November 30, 2006

Get off the grass! The lawn's a YAWN

The poor turnout for the recent WorkChoices rallies across Australia is indicative of what I call "The Big Sleep". For the faithful who turn out, it's the same old, same old. The union leader compere, followed by a shop steward or a union member, preferably one who's got a story to tell, followed by a folk singer or union choir, and then maybe an international speaker and finally, some old union bloke who's turn it is. Yawn. Boring. Fists in the air, we will defeat you Howard.

For new comers, or first time marchers, it may be the inspiration needed to go forth and multiply the union membership. I doubt it. Rallies don't build union power. They may make us feel good, but they don't build union power when the strength of feeling is not there.

We need to be cleverer. We should be using micro-media like YouTube to get the message across, and do fun stunts like gathering people via sms and spontaneously doing something in busy shopping centres. We could get cool bands and get them to play for free, and have the Workers Beer Company sponsor the event. Or, we could organise around another issue, like the water crisis, to get people out.

Instead of having the impact it should have, the poorly-attended rallies will have Howard laughing all the way to the next election - particularly if the shenanigans don't stop in the ALP.

We need to rethink our strategy. This is a wake-up call.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Tridenting your spirits....

It's still hard to believe that the country I'm from and the country I'm choosing to live in right now are both at war with Iraq.

We all knew it would be a disaster. Some of us tried to stop it, and I'm comforted in the knowledge that the greatest number of people in history marched against the war.

But it wasn't enough. And I don't know what to do now. I feel complicit for doing nothing. What would it have taken to prevent the war? Closing the ports? Withdrawing our labour? Who would give up a week's pay to stop the war when the credit card is maxed out to pay for the big fuck-off 45inch high definition digital TV? We weren't even ready to move people to the position of withdrawing their labour.

I feel sad :(

And now the UK Labour Government is thinking of renewing Trident, the Nuclear Submarine. What for? War's changed. Australia and the UK, as nation states, are at war with Iraq, a nation state, but a state divided. So we're not actually at war with Iraq. We're at war with insurgents. You can't nuke insurgents without nuking thousands of ordinary folk. And we're also at war with Terror. You can't nuke Terror. It's a noun.

Ooohh, excuse us Iran, but you're not allowed nukes. In the meantime though, we're going to spend a million squillion gadzillion pounds to build a nuclear sub that we'll never use, instead of spending the money on being clever about the ice caps melting.

And by the way, can you help us clean up the mess we've made in Iraq coz you're t
he closest.

The only Trident I want to see is the one on my stir fry.....

I commit to encouraging people to participate in democracy again.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

If you're for England, what would you rather be watching?

Would you rather watch the Ashes or......

Leonard Nimox singing!

Car CrAshes for England

What a crap start. The wide bowled by Harmison to second slip on the first ball of this much anticipated Ashes series was almost as good as the googlie bowled by Warne to Gatting on his first over. Except Warnie's hit the stumps....

My feeling is that England is so rubbish is because the Aussie crowd are chanting "Warnie's shagged your missus" whenever an Englishman goes near the boundary and it's quite possibly true.

It's just such a drubbing. It's not even close. It's like Australia Vs the Dumbleyung Und
er 12's. And Ponting not allowing the follow on, well, the English may as well just put paper cuts between their fingers and sprinkle with lemon juice.

Hope the next test is closer - for the good of the game and so I don't have to listen to the wingeing on BBC Radio 4.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Despatches in Despair

I am in despair over the latest performance by the Federal ALP. With 4 interest rate hikes in a row, the Iraq war and of course industrial relations, I can't believe that the ALP is so woeful. Kim Beazley and his frontbench class of '93 (a term I have pinched from a friend, who is important now, so shall remain nameless...) HAVE GOT TO GO.

I think we need Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd. I'm not saying Gillard and Rudd are perfect, but I think they could make a great team and get some spark happening in the Caucus.

Wayne Swan, Stephen Smith, Anthony Albanese, Jagga Jagga forgotten her name but she's the deputy leader which shows you how much of an impact she has on me...'s coming back.....Jenny.....fuck, I even did a fundraiser for her in '94 for the Dorothy Tangney Dinner, I can't remember her last name..... Macklin!!!! ...there it is.. Jenny Macklin. Right, well, all of them, including Beazley should move to the back and Peter Garrett and friends should shuffle down the front.

Imagine the team - Julia in Health, Kevin for Foreign Affairs and either of those two as leader (Kev speaks Mandarin which would be great for our relationship with the world's next super power), Garrett for Environment Minister, along with ministers such as Penny Wong, Jenni George and other talented younger potlicians - I don't know enough about Craig Emerson or Chris Bowen to comment....are they the next Labor factional warriors?

Swan, Smith and Beazley have to come to terms with the fact that it just wasn't their time to govern and for the good of the party, and the country, they should join Rogan Josh in a pasture in Capel.

It's tiring when you're an activist running around for months organising your polling booth and spreading the Labor message when in your heart of hearts, you just don't believe in the team.

I will always believe in the Labor Party. I am a true believer, but I also truly believe, that unless some miracle happens between now and the next election, we can't win under Beazley without the team united. And the reason for this is that the activists on the ground generally don't believe it. It all seems like a big boys school yard and it seems like it's been going on for years.

Either unify and sort it out or go to the back bench.

On another matter, David Cameron, Tory Leader here in the UK said "ladder of opportunity" the other day on radio. What a horrible bunch of memories that brought up!

(Pic: Remember to say "Rove McManus, Rove McManus, Rove McManus"....."Karl Rove")

Monday, November 20, 2006

Scissor Sisters Concert!

My uber fabul-arse mate Avril and I went to the Scissor Sisters concert in Glasgow. It was a classy honey kissy huggy lovey dovey brilliant concert!....and we were in fine form singing along to all our fave tunes. Jake and Ana Matronic were just amazing. It was a handbag house love fest. Kiss You Off, Take Your Mamma, Comfortably Numb, Don't Feel Like Dancin' and of course Filfthy Gorgeous, shook da house. I know this will offend Pink Floyd fans, but Comfortably Numb Scissor Sister style is so much betterer than the original. Jake and Ana lied and said they had haggis for dinner....
Let me tell you, anyone who ate offal for tea cannae dance like that! I mean... just look at it!

Cool Car Sticker!

This was in our favourite newspaper, The Guardian on the weekend.

It will eventually make its way onto our car the next time we drive it, which hasn't been since our trip to Loch Tay over a week and a half ago.....

I love the Guardian. It is a visual and cognitive feast.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Milton Friedman Dies aged 94

But seasonally adjusted, he died at 103.

Friedman's brand of "individual freedom above all else" in economics and monetary policy suits the rulers, the owners and the employers. His view that the State should not have control over wages equals a race to the bottom for low paid workers. No one has the "individual right" to decide someone else's economic fate in the name of freedom of choice.

Friedman may have been seen as a genius, and had influence over many a US president, but there was a major flaw in his economic argument regarding "if you allow the individual the freedom to have full responsibility for himself and his actions, this will lead to a higher moral climate in society." That flaw is the real world. In the real world, (most) economic power corrupts.

In fact, it's possible that Friedman's biggest influence has been the notion of "freedom loving nations" - a term that Bush likes to use regularly, and what "freedom loving" actually delivers, is an impingement on someone else's freedoms.... such as "free trade" actually meaning "farm subsidies".

If you want to find out more about freedom loving people and their economic viewpoints, click here.
I'm NOT being ironic this time......

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Support Getup and become a Mori Groupie!

I'm donating to Getup so that billboards can be made to lobby the Federal Government to either send Hicks home or send him to trial. This is an injustice - no one should be locked up indefinately without charge. And here is my friend Sue getting an autograph from Michael Mori - David Hicks' lawyer.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Taking on Tescos

The hallmarks of an ali b protest....giant dress-ups to make a point! We're protesting about Tesco selling strawberries from a supplier who exploits workers, particularly those from Eastern Europe. The security guard did not like it when I questioned the law regarding shopping with a giant strawberry when we went to Tesco's. These protests happened around the UK and I'm pleased to report that meetings have been ongoing with the suppliers and the supermarkets about ethical trading.

A Poem called Beryl Morgan

Beryl Morgan
Bury Mortgage
Boring Mileage
Born Martyr
Norm Marlborough

Mormon Mandurah
Moron Pandering
Morals Pending
Cornwall Pastie
Oral Pecks
Coral Packs
Carnal Pricks
Anal Crocks

Lame Crooks
Crime Books

Brine Lurks

Brian Burke

I don't think "Cornwall Pastie" should actually be there in the syntax of this poem, but I couldn't help it and it reminded me of the Miami Bakehouse.....the only reason one would stop in Mandurah. If only it was drive thru..... Oh how I miss the cajun chicken pies on the way to Bunghole.

For UK readers - Norm Marlborough..(pictured) was a Minister in the WA Carpenter Government but he and his mate Brian Burke, ex Premier, put Beryl Morgan, ex Busselton Shire Prez, (A Tory!) on the South West Development Commission Board and furthermore, it is alleged, possibly did something somewhat dodgy, it is alleged, with some Busselton Shire Councillors, allegedly, regarding a proposed development at Canal Rocks (pictured and lookin' bewdiful mate).

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Oor Wee Camper

This is our new camper - Ford Escort 55. It's been decked out inside with carpet, red curtains and a little stove. Here we are on the banks of Loch Tay in the north of Scotland on its maiden camping journey. It was fucken freezing....('scuse language, but sometimes, only fuck will do...)

I really love this pic of Jock too. He's eating home made bread for breakfast and wearing a beanie made out of possum fur. They're vermin in NZ you know....

And yes, they are fuzzy dice hanging from the mirror in the front.

The drive through Scotland's autumn scenery was divine.

Happy 60th Birthday Dad

To see Ali's "Haiku For Me Da" press play below!

New! and improved version!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Au Revoir Rumsfled (er.... Rumsfeld)

Answers to Spot the Difference:

Interestingly, there aren't that many differences. Both are martyrs because of an evil empire that stole from its people, but the main difference is that the one on the left came down as a staged media propaganda exercise, and the one on the right simply got rusty and fell over because people were too busy watching the opiate of the masses instead of going to the original opiate on a Sunday. The local townsfolk decided they'd moved on, and instead of fixing it, they spent the cash on a bit of a knees-up for the Belgian
Frère Grand TV show finale..... OR

And to be fair, there is another difference. If you look closely, you'll see that Saddam was pulled down by a large cable and pully system. Jesus, however, clearly got in the way of the mad professor, when in flying fox style, he knocked him over as the lightening bolt struck, so Micheal J. Fox had enough power to generate the flux capacitor in order to send him and the Delorean home to 1985.

Okay and now back to Rumsfeld....

From the Washington Post

Bush acknowledged that the election showed that many Americans are "frustrated" with the lack of progress in Iraq. "I am too," he said. "I wish this had gone faster. So does Secretary Rumsfeld. But the reality is that it's a tough fight. And we're going to win the fight. And I truly believe the only way we won't win is if we leave before the job is done."

See "You Idiot" in blog archives for more spin!

Happy Birthday to The Goodies

It was on this day, in 1970, that Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden and Bill Oddie's "The Goodies", went to air on BBC.

Bless the carrot underpants, giant kittens, dinosaurs, Rolf Harrises, Ecky Thumps and Loch Ness Monsters. And bless the speeded up footage - it's sooooo much funnier in double time....

An Od(di)e to the Goodies, By ali b

They're coming to get you!
Mum's coming to get you!
The dinner's ready!
But muuuuu-uuuumm
The Goodies are on
The Goodies are on
6 o'clock ABC
River Thames to
The Goodies are on!
Pleeee-ease can we watch
Just five more minutes
Baked Beans
Make you fart

Sunday, November 05, 2006

The House that Jock and Ali Built

Once Jock and Ali were home from their world adventure, this was the only house they could afford after Perth's housing market boom.

You Idiot

Vote the Republicans OUT on November 7!