Saturday, September 06, 2003

Great to see the Aussie blogs tracker up and running again after what appeared to be a slight glitch. It's a fantastic resource.

It's here if anyone has come in from an overseas link and is interested in finding other Australian blogs.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Watched Lateline last night. There was a fascinating debate between fluffy wuffy quackademic Stuart MacIntyre and RWDB Keith Windschuttle. Near the end of it the fluff did what they always do, which is to invoke emotionalism and try to turn the whole thing into a sensitivity competition, accusing Windschuttle of lacking empathy.

The Death Beast made mincemeat of that argument by pointing out that the job of the historian is to be dispassionate, not compassionate.

This is so obvious to anyone with an IQ over fifty and one eye half-open that you'd think it doesn't need stating at all. The fact that you have to do so repeatedly nowadays shows just how degraded academic standards have become under the reign of these sanctimonious Stalinist squits.

But just on that point: Apart from it being a ridiculous thing to do in the context of scholarship, what's so bloody compassionate about telling Aborigines that their recent history was overwhelmingly one of brutal dispossession and mass murder and that the vast majority of whites in the past (and present, for that matter) think of them as inferior and want to see them die out? Even if true, isn't that a particularly cruel thing to say to them? The fact that it's bullshit makes it even worse.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

I found this great piece about the long term, "big picture" reasons for invading Iraq via the excellent Bellicose Women.

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

I keep reading articles about this new TV show called Crashburn with Catherine McClements in it. The phrase "he said; she said" features in most cases. My first reaction: "Er, Catherine McClements is a she?"

Still, it has to be better than that other sack of televisual tripe The Secreted Glob of Pus. I should be thankful for small mercies, I suppose.
Today's Mourning Feral has a great letter from Helen Darville re Paul Sheehan's dissection of Manne and Co's craven gang-attack on Keith Windschuttle:

"Having experienced 'reputational rape' at the hands of Robert Manne and friends, I would like to commend Paul Sheehan for coining such an accurate description of the tactic.

"Manne's favoured adjective for yours truly was 'strange'; it seems he's upped the ante for others, with words like 'bizarre', 'breathtaking' and 'mad'.

"Like you, Dr Windschuttle, I copped a whole book by Professor Manne. At least he got some other people to help write the one about you. This means it may actually be well written, at least in parts. If it's any consolation, your ability to upset this bunch of self-serving, pompous gits is a good thing. If they don't manage to nobble your literary career, long may you continue to upset them.

"Accused of Holocaust denial? Don't worry, he does this to everyone. He's slowly draining an important term of its real meaning. Literary fraud? This is Robert Manne and the lit-gits' code for anyone who manages to make them look like the tossers they actually are. You're 'polemical and pitiless' as well? Well ... pot, kettle, black.

"If you can stand arguing with these people, be my guest."

Stick it up 'em Helen!

I love the list of his favoured terms: "strange", "bizarre", "breathtaking", "mad". They're all vague, emotive and arbitrary, just like the other two most treasured words of the jackbooted fluffy wuffy, "extraordinary" and "appalling".

Watch any episode of Squitical Mass on Their ABC and I'll bet you a fiver that not a minute goes by without at least one of them being uttered.

Monday, September 01, 2003

This is Glenn Reynolds' site meter. Jeez, do I feel inadequate.

I swear I'm gonna catch up! (Er, but by the time I do, I think the solar system may well have disintegrated into a vast amorphous fog of nano-particles...)

Sunday, August 31, 2003

Just got a hit from this Google search: "tim freedman wanker".

Hardly surprising. The two terms are almost interchangeable.
Ben Lee really is an annoying little shit. In this story about his new fillum (which is about a youngster who rebels against his hippy parents by being a real square - wasn't that the central hook of Family Ties?) he's quoted as saying:

"I was sitting on the plane from Nashville the other day and I had my journal in front of me because I was going to write my dreams in it... I had some lyrics I wanted to write and I had a Taoist text I wanted to read and an Apple iPod. I looked at the people next to me and they were zoned out.

"I forget there are people who are out there who aren't into growing and developing."

Gawd. What a plonker! And he's only about twelve. Imagine what the little turd will be like a decade from now. Crikey, he might even out-do Sting on the toss-ometer!
Just saw Peter Garrett quacking on about saving the Murray on the Insiders. The thing that struck me about him was his unremitting intensity. It was like his words were all being shot out of a high pressure hose!

Some people may think that this is a great quality, but I see it as dangerous. People who are too passionate just can't think straight, let's face it. If you're talking about the environment, you're invoking science, which is dispassionate by definition. (Or at least it should be.)

Whenever he's in a debate his attitude always seems to be, "Why the hell are we arguing? Everybody knows we are in this massive environmental crisis, and if we don't do something right now the bloody sky's gonna fall in!"

Er, is it?

I can see Garrett's appeal to whippersnappers who want a direction in life. Loving nature and hating civilization gives them something to channel all that youthful energy into. But is it right?

That's the question you should ask yourself often, I reckon. It's not enough just to care. You've got to care and think.