Open threads

Jun 12, 2012

Weekly open thread, 12-15 June 2012

A short week, so let's move on from the PM's ludicrous explanation last night for why she supports the law discriminating against gay people (paraphrasing, "I don't want to get married

A short week, so let’s move on from the PM’s ludicrous explanation last night for why she supports the law discriminating against gay people (paraphrasing, “I don’t want to get married so I don’t care if other people are arbitrarily prevented from exercising the choice I enjoy”) to whatever half-baked drivel the commentariat are up to.

I hope they’re enjoying the last three weeks of us paying attention to them.

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63 thoughts on “Weekly open thread, 12-15 June 2012

  1. Angra

    Not that it’s recommended bedtime reading for your kids, but Guns and Ammo mag provides an interesting and disturbing insight into the American psyche. They even have a leading story on the D’Arcy/Monk kerfuffle.

    It has over 5 million readers p.a., 97% of whom are male (who’d have guessed?)

    I particularly recommend “8 Best Guns for the Zombie Apocalypse”.

    They recommend the Glock G17.

    “You can train your family on it in ten minutes. It is durable, ubiquitous and it takes perhaps the most common ammunition on the planet: 9mm Parabellum. Magazines hold an ample supply of skull-popping ammo.”

    The Yanks are seriously f***ed.

  2. Matthew of Canberra

    Oh, and he’s also conflating the sort of muckraking that represents “how Labor has sunk under Julia Gillard” … muckraking like this:

    and this

    With quoting and publishing potentially defamatory material that had been previously shown to be incorrect, for which there was no evidence, and which some of the quoters apparently had doubts about themselves. Material that fairly strongly suggested that the PM had personally benefited from fraudulent, possibly criminal activity.

    Pull the other one. I reckon I know how long I’d last if I claimed something similar about a star employee of NEWS. That wasn’t muckraking – that was something else entirely.

  3. Matthew of Canberra

    Today, andrew bolt writes a WHOLE COLUMN to say how awful leftists are when they suggest that people might be at all motivated by cynical political appeals to prejudice and racism. I know. I agree. They should be much more creative than that.

    And so should our Most Respected Columnist, who uses that same charge astonishingly frequently:

  4. Ross Sharp

    Oh, crap. I just visited the ACL site. I’ve never been there before.

    I’ll have to let our IT people know I’m very, very sorry and will never do it again. I’ve probably got a Jesus disease now.

  5. Lola

    I’m a little bit sick of being demonized in order to prevent another group who have also been horribly demonized getting the fair treatment they deserve.

  6. Matthew of Canberra


    I’ve heard a rumor that the AEC is about to get a lot more proactive in tracking people down and enrolling them – they’re not going to just wait for you to go to them. Turn 18, move house, I think they’re going to start noticing. I don’t know all the details, though. And I’m not sure there’s anything the oppo can do about it.

  7. Rich Uncle Skeleton

    Now, they COULD claim that el-nino’s don’t count … but that would be the end of the original “hasn’t warmed since” claim, because that rests on an el nino event.

    Do you think they care? Only a couple of years ago it was “cooling”. Then when 2010 became the warmest year on record it “plateaued”. In 2013 it will become “it was an El Nino so it doesn’t count” and “it’s all within the bounds of natural variation”. They’ll exchange one bogus meme for another and not bat an eyelid.

  8. Matthew of Canberra

    “I hope they’re enjoying the last three weeks of us paying attention to them”

    Who else reckons PP will cop a couple of persecution-riddled diatribes from the usual suspects (“media workers”) the moment your blog is gone and they think you won’t be able to lampoon them in response?

  9. Matthew of Canberra

    Angra @36

    Great. Just what the world needs – ammo that comes complete with its own apocalyptic fantasy. Stay tuned for unarmed stoners being gunned down in the street while staggering to the shops for bags of chips, and armies of … media workers … arguing that it was self-defence and calling for a crack-down on zombie-resembling immigrants.

  10. Ross Sharp

    Bad “refugee” man (note quotation marks)

    “Can’t buy patriotism”
    “Filed under: The new morality”

    I just knew he’d have a post on this.

    This comment …

    Never heard of him – but you just know that, no matter who it is, no mater what he’s done, if he gets a mention in Bolt’s column then he’s got to be a non white immigrant or asylum seeker. If he’d have been a white European, it would not have got a mention here.

    So predictable.

    Lataan (Reply)
    Wed 13 Jun 12 (08:53am)

    … gets jumped on by about 40 people.

  11. monkeywrench

    correction to my post above: it was Miliband, not Clegg.

  12. monkeywrench

    You don’t hear Andrew Bolt talking about Iraq any more. That war was won for democracy and freeeedom, wasn’t it, Andrew? So how’s the great victory panning out, Andrew? Why, just dandy! At least 84 dead today. Andrew? Hello?

  13. monkeywrench

    Laughed into my wine last night listening to Nick Clegg at the Leveson inquiry. He thinks press ownership should be capped at around 20-25%. Oh my sides! Someone should send him on a fact-finding junket to Australia.

  14. Angra

    This is some serious anti-Zombie fire power. And sales have been doing great guns since the poroduct was announced.

    Company president Steve Hornady, in an interview with Guns & Ammo magazine at the time of the product launch, revealed some of the technical thinking behind the Z-Max.

    “Well, head shots or brain stem are the only effective shots on Zed (Zombies) so we focused on rapid fire quick recovery rounds,” Mr Hornady told the gun mag.

    “There was considerable debate about the shotgun round since, in my opinion, accurate shot placement is important. If Zed is close enough to reliably hit the brain with a shotgun then your situation may be dire indeed, and shotgun ammo is heavy, so you simply cannot carry as much as you will need. However, ultimately, I was convinced that for many shooters this may be their only rapid response firearm, at least initially,” added the ammo kingpin.

    Z-Max is available in several rifle and pistol formats, including the classic 9mm and .45 pistol cartridges and rounds suitable for the popular AK and AR-15 families of assault rifles. And as Mr Hornady says, there is also a 12-bore shotgun shell “Z-shot” available as well.

    I wish it were a spoof, but it’s not. And the Cousins are buying it in droves.

  15. Angra

    You wanna lock and load your personal protectors with anti-Zombie ammo?

    You scared shitless of Zeds?

    You need Zmax bullets.

    Be prepared for Zombiegeddon…

    Explosive Hornady® performance comes in every Z-Max™ bullet specifically designed to vaporize zombie varmints.

    Ultra-flat trajectories send mangy menaces to the varmint graveyard.

    Combined with AMP™ jacket technology, the Z-Max™ bullet is built to…MAKE DEAD PERMANENT!

  16. Matthew of Canberra

    Showing us that not only cream floats … check out this glurge. I recommend it, because it illustrates just how out of touch you can be and still get voted into the senate:

    I think he does a pretty decent job of misrepresenting Singer in that. It’s almost like he’s never actually read the things he writes about there – no, singer does NOT advocate infancticide “of children who are born with disabilities that the parent doesn’t think they can cope with”. He really doesn’t.

    And I laugh out loud to think that he seriously thinks that he deserves some sort of bravery award for his ban-the-burka tub-thumping.

    The point that nobody seems to understand about those guys in that photo is that they weren’t being judged as individuals – they were being judged as visible, name-brand members of our national olympic team. They’re free to do anything they like, but they’re NOT free to assume they can do anything they like and stay on the team, representing us as a country – on our dime. I also think the “outrage” was silly, and not really worth much coverage – but the outrage over the outrage, which as far as I saw was actually most of the story, was exponentially ridiculous. I think recent events have demonstrated that the Olympic team is not a democracy. If the responsible grown-ups think these guys are a risk (and I can’t POSSIBLY imagine why they might think that, nope, can’t think of anything at all*), then by all means send them home early.

    * might not be true.

  17. Matthew of Canberra


    Yeah, but there’s only one graph that matters to the … skeptics, and that’s dr spencer’s, because it supports their “ain’t no warmin'” hypothesis. When it officially starts warming again, they’ll have to switch to another argument. And we can predict that right now 🙂

    Now, they COULD claim that el-nino’s don’t count … but that would be the end of the original “hasn’t warmed since” claim, because that rests on an el nino event.

  18. Rich Uncle Skeleton

    Dr Spencer’s graph is heading up, and they’re predicting an el nino for next year.

    Prepare yourself for “it’s all natural variation!” which ignores these variations are happening around a rising mean.

  19. heavylambs

    A Herald-Sun numpty has calculated [re the world-ending carbon tax and its contribution to July 1 price increases] that 8$ x 52 weeks =$2000. Andrew B has linked to it without noticing….oh wait, he now has pruned his link down to exclude the innumeracy,which remains in its glory at the source. Bolt must have been too busy reading his tea-leaves -AGW is ‘of no consequence’- to have broken out the abacus.

  20. Brizben

    The Herald Sun’s undying commitment to “freedom of speech” or should I say “freedom of the over sensitive right to say anything unquestioned” continues:

  21. gtpfb13

    I posted to Andrew’s Gloria Jean thread pointing out the hypocrisy in this:

    Advocates for freedom are trying to shut down debate.

    in that comments are regularly moderated out, particularly those that contradict or point out the stupidity of his posts, but it didn’t get through moderation.

  22. littlemaths

    @ MOC

    Or else they’ll say “nah, don’t….aw, c’mon, stop it, please?”

  23. Matthew of Canberra

    Press Council … and Or Else?!?!?. Or else WHAT?

    Anyway, the press council’s advice was pretty mild.

  24. Mercurial

    sj @26 Out damn apostrophes!

  25. savvas jwnhs

    This is the perfect opportunity for Andrew Bolt to expose the flaws of a particular study (it came from Texas, so you can guess its bias).

    But it was left to one of his ‘lesser’ stablemates at the Hun. And she attacked it with a wet lettuce.

    Whilst this is proof of his bias, it is also indicative of the Hun’s directive’s to their opinion writer’s. In this case, a flawed study that bring’s the Right to shame, but we cannot have Bolt exposing it, because he has an audience to cater to.

  26. gtpfb13

    Is Andrew’s pathetic “The Press Council warns us not to call such people illegal immigrants – or else” to allow him to call asylum seekers illegal immigrants the same as me saying “Pure Poison administrators warn us not to call such people whinging deceitful fuckwits”?

  27. Matthew of Canberra

    ““I’d rather be wrong in the defence of the one, than wrong in the mob in pursuit.”

    Should we have a thread devoted to the things andy feels bad about? I’ll start with the death threats fiasco. Coz andy contributed heartily to the “lying liars who lie are lying again” meme, and at least the australian has attempted to misdirect (if not actually apologise), while bolta’s just looked the other way and ignored it.

    “But I also judge people by their ability to admit error”

    And if he starts now, he might have a clean slate in time for the start of the election campaign.

  28. Matthew of Canberra

    “Stop Press!!! The dingo has blamed Juliar and the Carbon Tax and said that if we had a good government it would have been a better result.”

    Well, it’s only fair – the conservatives went into bat for the dingo, and a favor deserves another.

  29. Matthew of Canberra

    I’d say we we’re about the same age. I remember “what will we be singing in the 80’s”, with the KISS makeup when I was in about grade 2.

    “My old man was a very competent lawyer in his day, tho he’s long retired and a bit stroke damaged”

    Oh, so he’s a judge then? (little joke – a family friend used to, apparently, grouse about judges, then one day he were one).

    I agree about the reasonable doubt thing. Looking back, it does look like the court was selecting the evidence that would get a conviction, and excluding the ample evidence (including witnesses) who would have tended to undermine that cause. Hence the “held to account” thing. Reasonable doubt doesn’t seem to have been much on anybody’s mind.

  30. Adam Rope

    Leveson enquiry latest:-
    Essentially both Gordon Brown and John Major, two former British Prime Ministers, have stated that Rupert Murdoch tried to exert undue influence on the government of the day.

    Major said that Murdoch tried to get them to change government policy on the EU prior to elections, or at least one of his newspapers (The Sun) would not support the then government.

    John Major:-

    Brown said that Murdoch lied over an alleged ‘phone call about The Sun switching it’s allegience to the Conservatives. And that News International, through James Murdoch undertook an “aggressive pursuit of deregulation in the British media industry”, purely for the betterment of News International.

    Gordon Brown:-

    I’m sure we’ll read a lot of News spin on these two testimonies in the near future.

    (It’s probably a conspiracy cooked up by Brown and Major together…..)

  31. jules

    “Also remember how shite their forensic technology was back then.”

    Doesn’t matter Matt.

    I was finishing primary school when this all happened and when the case was on. My mum was/is a scientist, well she was a botanist, became a teacher and worked designing school science curriculums. Including the National Sustainability whatever it is that they use to brainwash decent naturally objectivist kids into warmist alarmists.

    My old man was a very competent lawyer in his day, tho he’s long retired and a bit stroke damaged.

    I remember the two discussing the case over meals and stuff, with dad and mum comparing notes and learning about each others field in the process. They both agreed that there was no way the forensic evidence supported a guilty verdict.

    Basically the science didn’t support the idea of beyond reasonable doubt. Lindy needed my parents on her legal team obviously. I was a kid and remember watching them come to these conclusions and … it wasn’t expressly for my benefit but I learned alot from it.

  32. podrick

    Stop Press!!! The dingo has blamed Juliar and the Carbon Tax and said that if we had a good government it would have been a better result.

  33. Matthew of Canberra

    I think next year is going to be the end of the “it hasn’t warmed since” theme.

    Dr Spencer’s graph is heading up, and they’re predicting an el nino for next year.

  34. Jack Sparraaggghhh

    See if you can guess who wrote this

    I saw the first line on rss feed, but thanks (and commiserations) for actually going there.

    “I’d rather be wrong in the defence of the one, than wrong in the mob in pursuit.”

    A particularly fluffy piece of fluff.

    “But I also judge people by their ability to admit error”

    Definitely another ROFLMAOBolt… but I think I’m finally in ROFLMAOBolt fatigue. I’m barely even curious about the point of that posturing (was it to do with Wendy Harmer’s apology to Lindy?).

    A vignette from 1982.

    I’m on the bank of a pond on a walk with a schoolteacher friend and his family. Dad wonders where all the yabbies have gone.

    Daughter of 11 years old kills the bonhomie with, “Lindy Chamberlain must have killed them all.”

    Dad gently admonishes daughter for her thoughtlessness. Adults present generallly appalled but really couldn’t be angry with the kid.

    Lindy-Hate seemed to be in the water in those days.

  35. Angra

    MoC – and kid eaten, clothes found next to Dingo lair, dingo hairs found in tent, toothmarks on same, NT Police find fake evidence (“blood” in car), smear parents, pay suspect forensic scientists (since completely discredited ) to provide ‘evidence’, then destroy such so that no one can double-check it, original investigator admits to lying and mishandling the clothes. Forensics on the car proved to be completely false. Forensic scientists shown to be frauds.

    What more do we need?

    The NT police (egged on by Government political interests) were corrupt, incompetent and dishonest.

    It was a classic frame-up, in retaliation to the NT forces being shown up as utter dickheads, by the original Barratt inquest.

    Fucking disgrace.

  36. Angra

    MoC – I have it on good authority that the Chamberlains have not even covered their 30-years legal fees yet from the income of media publicity.

    So who can blame them?

    So much for ‘justice for all’. In this country justice is for the wealthy.

  37. Matthew of Canberra

    There is absolutely no excuse for voting machines not being entirely open source. The hardware could be all purchased off-the shelf, the software should be completely online for all to see. All that the vendors should be doing is building the things, and they should be available for public inspection.

    At least, that’s if you’re a huge, wealthy country that can’t seem to stop arsing up their elections. I know that’s harsh, but … seriously – that 2000 fiasco said all that needed to be said about just how important democracy really is. Maybe a new word is needed – rather than “democracy” they could maybe call themselves “a regular holder of votes”. You know, like iraq is.

  38. Matthew of Canberra

    Oh, for goodness’ sake.

    See if you can guess who wrote this:

    I tend to judge people most by their reaction to a mob – whether they join in or instinctively push back. In fact, my very first published work, an awful piece of teen poetry, was about exactly that. I’d rather be wrong in the defence of the one, than wrong in the mob in pursuit.

    But I also judge people by their ability to admit error

    Hint – it’s somebody who has, apparently, absolutely no capacity for self-awareness. That last line’s astonishing, in context.

  39. Matthew of Canberra

    “So what do you think about the findings of the 4th and final Azaria Chamberlain inquest?”

    I believe the dingo is still considering an appeal.

    “I reckon even blind Freddie could have seen their innocence from day 1”

    Well, see, I’m not sure we can quite go THAT far. Kid missing, no body … that’s about it, really. On that basis, it’s astonishing that a conviction could have been upheld, particularly given the original coroner’s finding that their story was probably true. But they really should have walked, no doubt about it.

    But yeah, it’s a monument to just badly wrong the justice system can go, and how venomous the media can be. It’s way too late now, but in an ideal world, the individual actions of people involved would go under the microscope, with the possiblity of criminal charges. You know – that “holding to account” stuff that conservatives keep banging on about that. People screwed up, badly, and their motivations would not appear to have been pure.

    Also remember how shite their forensic technology was back then. And keep in mind that in another 30 years we’ll be saying the same about our forensic technology NOW.

    And somebody owes the chamberlains a whole crapload of money. Justice on the cheap, boys and girls – painted up to a standard, then beaten down to a price.

  40. Angra

    Wendy Harmer (appropriate name) should should don sackcloth and ashes and proceed on her knees from Manly to Darwin in penance for taking the piss out of Lindy Chamberlain, falsly accused and imprisoned – by the extremely incompetent NT Police and public prosecutors – for the alleged murder of her baby – now found to be a complete web of fabrication.

    “Harmer said satire was no excuse for her comments.
    “In pursuit of a laugh, I too carried a burning stick. What was I thinking?” she wrote.”

    Dickheads are dickheads – whether they are from the left or the right. Or comedians or politicians.

    And which were the news outlets which ran “Lindy is Guilty of Atrocious Crime” stories?

    ‘Baby sacrifices in the desert in the name of God?’ is one that springs to mind. Not by any chance from our responsible News media?

  41. jules

    Oops, sorry pressed post too quickly…

    I meant to add that Command Central (the company with the spooky patch on the link above) apparently run Dominion Voting Systems, who acquired Premier/Diebold Election Solutions (which is a great name really if you’re a Machiavellian psycho) after the debacles and conflicts of interest associated with electronic voting in the US during the later half of Dubya’s time in power.

    This is a convoluted disaster and shows only one thing really. To avoid the appearance of dodginess in your electoral counts, don’t use electronic voting, especially without a paper back up/record.

    More reading here:

    and here

  42. Jack Sparraaggghhh

    Re the Azaria inquest… Tragic that it came to this. 32 years and one shattered family later, they’ve reached a finding identical to the first inquest. The Chamberlain witch hunt was a shameful episode in this country’s history.

  43. jules

    Matt @4

    Remember the Wisconsin election the other day?

    I’m not saying voting in the US is compromised.

    No really, I’m not. But I am wondering about it a lot.

  44. Angra

    Just discovered the Cattalaxy Files threads on Chamberlain.

    There is more spiteful, violent, ignorant and downright shit comment there than I have ever come across.

    This explains a lot. The rednecks (this is too nice a term – how about just plain brainless facist bastards) just migrate from one cause to another.

  45. jules

    What angra @ 5 said.

  46. Angra

    So what do you think about the findings of the 4th and final Azaria Chamberlain inquest?

    I reckon even blind Freddie could have seen their innocence from day 1 (as the Coroner stated today), and the conduct of the NT Government and Police has been utterly disgraceful and should be investigated.

    It is one of the worst examples of trial by media, incompetent police investigation and vindictive prosecutions in Australia’s history.

  47. Matthew of Canberra

    How %[email protected]&ed is this country?

    I think the US needs to stand back and let some grown-ups get their affairs in order. They’re becoming an embarrassment to the principle of democracy.

  48. shepherdmarilyn

    And here is a nice segue -David Rofe was asked to be Kathy dingbat Jackson’s lawyer.

  49. Jack Sparraaggghhh

    Even Twitter can sometimes be useful…

    Tweet the world’s biggest arms exporters to support the Arms Trade Treaty!
    Posted: 8 JUN 12 Written by: Oxfam

    The countdown is on to July 2, when world governments begin negotiating an international Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) to prevent arms transfers to human rights abusers and repressive governments.

    You can send a strong message to the world’s biggest weapons-supplying countries, the United States and Russia, that governments that supply arms for atrocities are responsible too. Now is the time for a bullet-proof ATT to close the legal loopholes currently allowing arms to end up in the wrong hands.

    Join the Global Tweet-a-thon for the ATT! From Wednesday 13 June to Friday 15 June…

  50. podrick

    Well Piers has started the week off on a flyer. Yes its Heiner Time again *drink*.

    I am sure that the Cando Cabinet has much better things to do, like how to sack more of and screw over my co-workers than go back to this one.

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