Tuesday, 30 June 2015

51% of young Australians will never own their own home

We have the third most expensive property in the world. Homes are no longer just for shelter but for investors to gamble on. But SSJoe reckons there's no property bubble....


Catholics whinge about being bigots

Oh my heart fuckin bleeds. NOT.

Instead of crying about being "weird" now, save the tears for the molested children the church has blamed and ignored over the decades. Go stick your fuckin archaic church morality. What relevance does it have to modern humanity?

Imagine if this was racists saying that they still believed it was against the Bible to undo segregation?


The rise of surveillance capitalism - corporate data extraction

*click image to enlarge.

Imagine a world where capitalism doesn't rely on mutual trust but the ability of the corporation to extract information from the consumer. Where the only transparency is of the consumer. Where the rights of the consumer to privacy are forever being seceded to the corporation, hungry for ever more information to feed off and analyse from the mass of consumers available to it.

Sound familiar? Well it's happening right now within our midst. 

It gives new light to reasons why the corporate controlled Abbott gov is so intend on our metadata and corporations having access to it. How many times for example have we heard that the corporations will now have access to our metadata through the courts, in regard to copyright infringement. My guess is that is just the very tip of the iceberg. 
The first feature is the trend toward ever-greater levels of data extraction and analysis. The goal of companies like Google is to extract as much data from you as possible and convert it into a commodity that can be bought and sold. This extractive relationship is asymmetrical and devoid of the mutual interdependencies that characterised 20th century corporations like General Motors. 

The second feature is the possibility of new forms of contractual monitoring and enforcement. The infrastructure of surveillance capitalism allows for contracts to be monitored and enforced in real-time, without the need for legal recourse. This would constitute a radical break with the classic liberal model of contractual relationship. There would be no need for trust, solidarity and rule of law. 

The third feature is the desire to personalise and customise digital services, based on the data being extracted from users. Though there may be some benefits to these personal services, the infrastructure that enables them has facilitated a considerable redistribution of privacy rights from ordinary citizens to surveillance capitalist firms like Google and Facebook. 

The fourth, and final feature, is the capacity for continual experimentation and intervention into the lives of the service users. This gives rise to what Zuboff calls reality-mining, which in its most extreme form will lead to the construction of a ‘world-spanning organism’. more
Ive often been pissed off with the trickery of modern capitalism. Particularly online. If they want to sell me something, simply tell me what their product is in an honest way and if I want to buy it I'll go ahead and do so. But these days you have the hook/spiel, bullshit to wade through, the trickery to get you to buy. The con job. Which most of the time leaves me so pissed off that I'd never ever buy the product.  

Monday, 29 June 2015

10 years of Fox news predictions about gay marriage :s

No, David and I do not want to marry our cats.


Anti-gay Americans want to move to Australia - seriously

I think they need to do a bit of research if they're going to move to Australia. We don't have gay marriage (yet) but we're certainly gay friendly, much more so than in parts of some of those wacked out US states over there. 

In fact christians here who spit the dummy about gay marriage are either condemned or laughed at, or both. Publicly. In the main stream media, let alone online.

In short if you're so anti-gay you want to leave the US over gay marriage, try Russia or Africa as those sorts of places will be the only places that you'll feel you're beliefs are taken seriously. Seriously. If that fails go join ISIS as apparently they're incredibly anti-gay. You'll have to change your religion though.

Christian predictions of doom collection if US gay marriage - "Murder of the masses"

Right Wing Watch has put together an article citing the most crazy out there christian predictions of doom that will happen with gay marriage. What are they going to do then when all this shit doesn't happen? *crickets*


"Tarka" blood pressure pill still out of stock - WTF?

I just managed to get one box last month that was the last one in the three chemists I tried. Nearly had to make an emergency appt with my doctor that time as my blood pressure has a habit of going really haywire really quick and I was supposed to have one that day.

So this time I rang the chemist saying I needed it this Wednesday. But they're still out of stock. Must be two months now. Have given up on Tarka and seeing my doctor tomorrow.

I've never heard of this. In all the years I've been dealing with chemists and pills and prescriptions, not just for me but for my daughter and late wife who was chronically ill. Have never once had something been out of stock like this.

Doctor said to see if it was there this month and if it wasn't he'd give me something different, is why I'm making a special trip to see him tomorrow just because of this pill being run out. He said then that it'd been happening for a few pills lately and there was "no reason" for it. Weird. 

Businesses spit the dummy at political climate paralysis - Australia

We've had science trying to get through to the Abbott gov without success. Religion has also emphatically tried to tell the Abbott gov that the science is real without success. Now it's the turn of Australian business to try and get through to the Abbott gov. Will they have any better luck? My guess is no, although I do hope I'm wrong. 

These aren't just a few small fly by night organisations either. They represent pretty much the entire current business world in Australia.
Groups included in the “climate roundtable”, which has been meeting secretly for more than a year, are the Business Council of Australia, the Australian Industry Group, the Australian Aluminium Council, the Climate Institute, the Australian Council on Social Service, the Investor Group on Climate Change, the Australian Conservation Foundation, WWF, the Energy Supply Association of Australia (ESAA) and the ACTU. more
The problem is of course that "Direct Action" doesn't work and is incredibly expensive. A token gesture at climate change designed to make it look like Abbott's actually doing something about something he thinks is "crap". A slush fund for polluters even is how many view Direct Action. They threw out the perfectly good emissions trading scheme which was working marvelously in the scare campaign to win gov ("axe the tax").

This group of businesses aren't just asking for some stable policy whatever that is either. They want something that actually works to make real and deep cuts to emissions, not just window dressing that treats us all like idiots. 
The “principles” agreed to by the groups include that climate policy should: 
  • drive domestic abatement wherever it is efficient and internationally recognised across all sectors of the Australian economy 
  •  make use of internationally recognised abatement from overseas to ease the transition towards net zero emissions 
  • recognise the strategic importance of reducing emissions from the energy sector in achieving the overall goal 
  • use any revenue resulting from climate policy to address legitimate needs directly related to climate policy, and otherwise be returned to businesses and individuals more
Will Abbott listen to business? Probably not. Not unless it's politically expedient for him. Politics is the only world Abbott lives in.

Community protest at Abbott Point - Great Barrier Reef

With Adani looking like it may very well pull out of Abbott point giving the 5 year ongoing delay in approvals to go ahead, this is just some of the opposition the community has been putting up against the expansion of the Abbott Point coal port. 

Indeed, to supply 100million homes with power for the next 90 years with coal as Adani wants, is planetary insanity. Not to mention the immediate destruction of the Reef through dredging.


Sunday, 28 June 2015

Flee US because gay marriage, before gods judgement! - christians

The christians in the US have gone into meltdown. The chook feathers are flying everywhere.


Peter Short's senate submission speech - Dying with dignity

Peter Short died some months ago, leaving his family behind. He's also left behind this senate submission advocating for the right of Australians to chose the time of their death and die with dignity.


Abbott's war of ABC/TERROR!© - Angry Aussie

Is Abbott pissing off Muslims on purpose to get a rise out of them, thereby taking away more and more of our civil rights because TERROR!©? An interesting question. 

Clamping down on illegal downloading for example for the corporations?


The Duggars are praying for the US :s

Good grief.

Republican "relics"; anti gay marriage policies - US Republican

The political fallout is starting in the US after the historic US Supreme Court decision legalising gay marriage across the country. Republicans now have to decide where to go from here. Unlike the past, granting rights to an oppressed minority is one thing, but taking rights away is a whole new kettle of fish. 

Here an honest Republican sees gay marriage for what it really is. Not a political machine to gain power, but simply people wanting the same rights as everyone else. She gets it, unlike many conservatives, and fears the Republicans will become relics of the past if they too don't get it.

To me this is a direct message to the Lieberal party in Australia and Tony Abbott.


Please help the GetUp cause for gay marriage - Australia

GetUp has launched a new push for marriage equality in Australia with the purpose of funding thus:
  • The costs to hold marriage equality rallies in capital cites around Australia, to keep attention on the campaign in the media, spread the excitement through the community, and sustain pressure for a Liberal party free vote on the bill, 
  • Commissioning polling to show on-the-fence MPs just how overwhelming the support for marriage equality is in their electorate, 
  • Printing posters and putting them up all over key electorates, so that everyone knows to get in touch with MPs who are yet to announce their support, 
  •  Resourcing grassroots organising in these target electorates, to make it really easy for these communities to pull together and speak up for equality.
If you so desire you can contribute here. I would myself but as you know we've nothing to spare. 

I can't believe it has taken this long in Australia, the country that in past years and decades has been at the forefront of social evolution. 

Our federal parliament is crammed full of bigots and christians who yearn for the 1950's; unrepresentative swill who got there fuck knows how. Lieberal and Labor party machinations that locked out the grass roots representation from mainstream Australian society. 

Incredibly, the very notion of Abbott allowing a conscience vote in Canberra on the issue is igniting dissent and backlash in the Lieberal party itself. I can't believe that that is representative of the mainstream public that voted Lieberal.

This is no longer simply about marriage equality for Australian gays. This is about our democracy itself. This is about Australia itself being equal with the rest of the western world. 

Are we to allow our politicians to trash our views like this? Are we to just give up, again, and shrug our shoulders at Canberra? Are we to let conservatives in Canberra hijack our democracy and our international reputation for their own ideological ends?

All I know is that David and I want very much to get married, as I did with my late wife. Aside from everything else, as Panty Bliss said in Ireland, this is personal. That in itself is cause to fight for. 

Please help the GetUp campaign above if you're able. 

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Adani looks like pulling the plug on Abbott Point - India

Hah! Oh what a sweet victory this will be for the planet if Adani does go ahead and pull the plug. All the efforts of various environmental groups and grass roots political organisations look like they're about to stop Adani in it's tracks. After 5 years and a change of gov in Queensland, it's all seeming a bit too much now for the company. In any case, humanity wouldn't survive in anything like it's current form if India spent the next 90 years powering 100million households with Australian coal.
Adani's Australian ambitions ran into a new dispensation following an election in coal-rich Queensland, leading to a policy reversal and heightened pressure to protect the Great Barrier Reef. However, sources also say that softening international coal prices has made the going tough. "The management is wary of relentless attacks by Greenpeace, which has been opposing the project due to environmental issues," said a source aware of the development. 

The project's success depends on environmental approval to deepen a port on the fringe of the Great Barrier Reef in order to ship the coal. The Australian authorities had rejected a plan to dump soil dredged at the port of Abbot Point into the sea, about 25 km from the reef. 

With pressure from the green brigade increasing, 11 of the world's biggest banks, including Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan Chase, had publicly ruled out providing financing to Adani, citing environmental concerns. more from India  

"All eyes now on Australian marriage equality" - Human Rights Campaign, US

 In the wake of the US decision to legalise gay marriage across the nation, the US based Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is now turning it's attention to Australia and marriage equality here. HRC says it has 1,5 million members and supporters across the US, and will support Australia's efforts to get that fuckwit Abbott out of the way.  
Australia, which currently allows civil unions between same sex couples, is the next country with an opportunity to approve nationwide marriage equality. Support for legalization of same-sex marriage has hit an all-time high of 72 percent among Australians. Yet for the past six years, the decision to legalize same sex marriage has been held up in parliament for a variety of political reasons. After today's U.S. decision, the world will now focus on whether the Australian Government will allow its members to vote their conscience on marriage -- despite Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s steadfast reluctance to allow such a vote. 

Riding on the momentum from the successful same sex marriage referendum in Ireland - the first time a country’s citizens had voted for such a measure -- the leader of the Australian opposition Labor Party, Bill Shorten, earlier this month introduced a bill to legalize same sex marriage across Australia. Mr. Shorten said: ‘Our laws should be a mirror reflecting our great and generous country and our free, inclusive society.’ 

However the Coalition government led by Prime Minister Abbott, refuses to allow members of his ruling coalition to vote their conscience on this matter. It is worth pointing out that 77 percent of Australians think that he should free up Members of Parliament to vote as they wish. Abbott has long opposed measures to recognize same-sex marriage for a range of personal and political reasons, including, as he has said, being the last holdout in his family for “the traditional position.” 

According to Australian Marriage Equality national convener Rodney Croome: "Australia is now the only developed, English-speaking country that doesn't allow same-sex couples to marry." But that could all change soon. Love can’t wait, and Australians should not have to wait any longer for marriage equality. more

Christians compare SCOTUS ruling to 9/11 terrorists - US

I've not had a chance to go into much of the christian reaction to SCOTUS legalising gay marriage across the US. Suffice to say at this stage they're going to be really pissed off at all those evil people who dare to love who they fall in love with. This caught my eye though, from that ghastly Bryan Fischer.


SCOTUS says I Do to gay marriage - US

Congratulations to all those in the US who have fought so long and so hard for this to happen over there. Particularly in the face of some of the worlds most fiercest and extremist christian opposition. You have steadfastly moved forward, showing those around you as never before that you are just people like everyone else, who simply want the same equal recognition of your love as everyone else.

Who would have thought even ten years ago, that in 2015 gay marriage would become legal across the entire US.




Exhausted - the stressfull week that was

It's been a bad week for us. We both slept about 10 hours last night, hardly able to get up today feeling so exhausted, mentally and physically.

I've had to be stuffing around with the forms for bankruptcy, one of them being 25 pages long, and getting the $bloke at the community centre to go over them to make sure I've filled it all out properly. Quite an effort of the head that one. Not exactly the happiest of things either to declare to all that you're financially fucked, especially when none of it is our fault. 

It's hard to actually lodge the forms now too. They used to have an office in the city to go and do it, but now you have to mail it to Adelaide where they do it by snail mail. Either that or email it all into the bowels of some invisible gov cyberspace thing. I decided on the hard copy way with a real live signature, sent by super duper registered overnight express post. Unfortunately being bankrupt, I don't have any money to do that until pension day on Wednesday so the whole thing will have to wait until then.

Then they get it and it takes up to two weeks to process the thing, at which time they send you your very own bankruptcy number. Perhaps I'm supposed to frame that? They also send it to the Commonwealth Bank which is the only debt I have, at which time the Commonwealth bank will throw their hands in the air and say fuck a lot I suppose.  

We also had a chance encounter with the local constabulary, which can be either good or bad depending on your chances on the day. This minor incident turned out bad, was fixed and all, but it did serve to remind us both of past cop experiences that have been extremely bad for both of us on different individual occasions. 

It's surprising how a minor event can trigger so many bad memories sometimes. We both had trouble sleeping through the week and have still been having nightmares even last night. The other night I was having a terrible nightmare and punched the person in my dream, which turned out to be David in real life right next to me. Got to laugh I suppose.

Abbott's war on the ABC/TERROR!© - Howard vs Abbott

The current Lieberal war on TERROR!©, although as shamelessly poll driven as Howard's certainly lacks much of Howard's finesse. In short, Howard understood that in Australia's democracy it was OK for things to be said on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in discussions that weren't in agreement with the gov of the day. In fact things that may well have not been in agreement of much of the population of the day. Something that Abbott and his gov don't appear to have the faintest idea about.

I point to a short video that has come to light this week of Howard appearing on the same Question and Answer (Q&A) program on the ABC years ago when he was Prime Minister. He took a question about David Hicks, which the gov had called the "worst of the worst" TERROR!©ist. Many, but certainly not the majority, in the community thought that the US holding Hicks for 5 years in Gitmo without charge facing a kangaroo court, wasn't right for a democracy like ours. He disagreed, but made the comment first about it being Australia that allowed such questions to be asked by someone the gov had considered a TERROR!©ist.

Last week on Monday there was a different question from a different person in the community who had been acquitted of TERROR!© by the Australian courts. When being told by a gov minister on the show that he should have had his citizenship revoked because he got off with the charges not being "retrospective"/kangaroo court, the bloke responded angrily and went over the top. Understandable I guess. I mean if you were in front of a national audience how would you respond being told by your gov to fuck off as they're right and the courts are wrong?

The gov's response though wasn't at all like Howard's. Thus:

Pretty fuckin bad Tone when even Howard looks good next to you

Abbott's pathetic attempt to win TERROR!© as something only his gov can deal with is turning out to be little more than a bunch of spoilt brats crying in the schoolyard about what someone said on telly about them. Their past ravings about freedom of speech (freedom to be a bigot) are shown for what they are; nothing more than an attempt to hijack debate in Australia according to their terms. It appears that freedom to speak only extends to it being in agreement with gov memes. 

You may chip in here to support the ABC if you so desire.

Friday, 26 June 2015

Searching for western Sydney TERROR!© - The Feed :)

From Abbott's leaked TERROR!© photo op maps, The Feed went to Bankstown in western Sydney to look for TERROR!©ists. It looks about as far from TERROR!© as you can get to me :s

Dear oh dear Tone, it's all getting more and more Python-esque.




A job stops mental health problems - Abbott gov

OMG! All these years and that's the answer! I'll email my psychologist right now and chuck away the happy pill prescription.

Farmers rebel at Lieberal climate change denial - open letter

Farmers are pissed off with an internal Lieberal push to do fuck all at the upcoming climate change talks in Paris. They have penned an open letter for all to sign in support of them not wanting the Lieberals to do so. Letter pictured. 

Getting pretty bad when even the farmers are pissed off with the Lieberals. 


Australian inequality - an ACOSS PSA

The Australian Council of Social Services has put out this new video about wealth inequality in Australia and how it affects people with less. A very clever use of a swimming pool illustrates the effects on people at the bottom perfectly.



Do you dare to touch an HIV+ person? - Video

I've often thought about something like this. When riding on a bus or walking through a crowd, what would be people's reaction if they knew I was HIV+? Would they move away from me on the bus in disgust or horror? Would the crowd avoid me? 

Perhaps the answer to that question is this video.....


Thursday, 25 June 2015

Traditional marriage - an historical look :)


Spotting a housing bubble

About a very bad one from Australia's past which sounds very much like today.

Abbott's ASIO photo op - reveals secret maps to the world :s

Abbott went to ASIO to look tough on terror. Unfortunately he went a bit far, the maps under his nose being deemed as secret. Maps of Sydney and Melbourne showing areas where people have come from who have gone overseas fighting for terror! (Terror! I tell you!). There were photos and filming.

Here's the YouTube version:

This article has the Fairfax version, which I took a still from the video thus: 

However it was upside down, so I turned it around and sharpened it up a bit. May I hereby present ASIO's secret maps of TERROR!© curtesy of Abbott's latest photo op. Looks like no TERROR!© in eastern Sydney BTW, it's all those bloody western Sydney rednecks!

But Labor's defence spokesman David Feeney said the Prime Minister had been shown being "briefed about materials that we now understand are secret". 

"He's a Prime Minister who conducted a press conference in the very heart of one of our most sensitive buildings and most important intelligence organisations – ASIO – which I think suggest he has some deep enthusiasm for being photographed in this building," Mr Feeney said. 

"The audio clearly showed the chief of ASIO is briefing him and pointing to maps and then ASIO tells us later that those maps are for official use and not for broadcast. 

"Can the Prime Minister please explain to us what damage, if any, has been done?" 

Mr Feeney said Mr Abbott prided himself on being a Prime Minister with an instinct for national security issues. 

"Did he recognise this for the material it was?" he said. 

"How can it be that your finely honed instincts for national security didn't tell you this is material not meant to be broadcast?" 

In Parliament on Thursday morning Labor tried to censure Mr Abbott, who they said had breached national security by allowing the documents to be shown. 

"ASIO should not be used as a prop for a Liberal photo opportunity," frontbencher Anthony Albanese said. more

All this TERROR!© talk was worth ten flags too, a new record I think. Very Monty Python.


Latest US mass shooting was because gay marriage terrorists - christians

Far out. Beam me up Scotty :s  Is there nothing that they won't blame on marriage equality?



Catholic warning letter to businesses supporting gay marriage - Australia

More love from the christians.......

Recently a whole bunch of businesses took out a full page add declaring their support for marriage equality in Australia. A gesture of the times.

The Catholic church, not content with trying to defend it's decades of moral failings at the child sex abuse royal commission, has decided it still has moral authority over modern Australia. Angry at said businesses supporting gay marriage, they have sent this letter (example below) to Sydney businesses threatening to use their economic power against those businesses if they continue to support marriage equality.

The law firm this particular letter was addressed to has taken offence, albeit delicately telling the church to fuck off:
The law firm has since said its involvement with the campaign “is to ensure everyone is treated equally before the law”. 

Principal Liberty Sanger told The Australian: “No one is trying to persuade the Catholic Church to alter their definition of marriage. I take it (the letter) with a grain of salt; ­obviously they are very agitated with the issue, but it is not helpful to engage with this level of ­emotion.” more