Archive for February 2003

Hi again Father Christmas, it’s

February 28, 2003

Hi again Father Christmas, it’s Sam here.

I know Christmas is a long way off this year, and in the past I have not been a very good boy, but I promise to be extra good this year if you get me one of these.

Thank You!

P.S. I would also like world peace, but get me the XVF first!

Friday is Orientation day (O-Day)

February 27, 2003

Friday is Orientation day (O-Day) at the wonderful University of Western Australia. O-day is famous for a grand tradition of persuading young, impressionable minds to join your cause and have a grand old time drinking publicly-subsidised beer. Even though I am no longer a student there, I am keen for hi-jinks.

While I realise my post-cricket training inebriation may be affecting my judgement, I challenge you and you (and maybe you!) to turn up at “the Tav” in the afternoon for a hearty discussion of beer + uni life.

For my part I promise not to indoctrinate anyone and you promise not to throw waterbombs at me, and it’s a deal!

UPDATE: Wusses 😦

James Russell wants everyone to

February 25, 2003

James Russell wants everyone to reveal their faces, so I’ll start off.

Here’s me standing in front of a Linear Gradient! (From my website wardy.com)

Since the earliest recorded history

February 24, 2003

Since the earliest recorded history of mankind, trees have lorded their supreme ability to create oxygen over us like an executioner’s axe. Capitalising on their power of man’s life has been the agenda of trees throughout the millenia.

Trees have insidiously crept up on our society, taking over buildings, parks, farmland and even houses of government. They have enlisted their own army of human slaves to fight the cause for them.

Now in the new millenium, the miracles of man’s science promise an end to the tyranny of trees:

SCIENTISTS are developing an artificial tree which can perform the function of living trees better than the real thing – and potentially reduce greenhouse gasses by millions of tonnes a year.

Synthetic models which could sit in an office or trees the size of houses are being planned. One tree it is estimated, could remove 90,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year – equal to 15,000 cars’ emissions.

Viva La Revolution!

Tim Dunlop doesn’t like the

February 24, 2003

Tim Dunlop doesn’t like the Australian Flag, so I made use of my fearsome Photoshop skills to create a new one for him here.

Update: Thanks to Tim Blair and Ken Parish, lots of people want a gander at the flag, so I’ll repost it here to save you all that clicking 🙂

Flag for the modern Australian Left:

Gary Sauer-Thompson asks why Australia

February 24, 2003

Gary Sauer-Thompson asks why Australia supports the proposed US actions in Iraq, because it isn’t in our “national interest”

“So, from the point of view of Australia’s national interest, we have no reason to attack Iraq. Crudely speaking , Iraq is not our business since Iraq’s weapons can’t reach us.”

Many people would argue that regime change in the Middle East would result in a domino effect of destablising fundamentalist muslim nations (the breeding grounds of Islamic terrorism) and eventually result in more prosperous and peaceful Middle East.

This obviously would be in the national interest of any country that desires peace.

To get back to Gary’s argument though:

“The only national interest reason that I can find for going to war with Iraq is to stay on side with the Americans. They have a treaty obligation to defend us in the unlikely event we are ever attacked.”

Our role is to provide the moral (political) support for action, and the “action” is then provided by the US military. It is the very nature of Australia’s reputation as a successful, peaceful, democratic western nation that provides the value of the alliance from the American point of view. It is unlikely they would get as much political clout out of support from Columbia, for instance.

Gary wants to argue that this isn’t a good enough reason. We don’t need America’s protection, nobody would ever attack peace loving, happy Australia. Or perhaps the point is, we don’t really need to fulfill our half of the bargain, since America would be compelled to help us anyway, should we ever be attacked.

Renegging on our obligations would put us in the same boat as the “weasels” in France. All too happy to accept the mighty US as protector, while at the same time demonise them as the root of many of the world’s problems for political gain.

What Gary’s argument (and that of the people who protested against the war last week) boils down to is this:

America has to protect us anyway, because they are the world’s only superpower. We don’t have to support them in return, since any attack on Australia would be a major international incident and require immediate action from all like-thinking democratic countries. We would get what we need for free anyway, so why pay for it?

John Howard isn’t the only Australian left who prides himself on the image of Australians as those who “stick up for their mates”. Honesty to the point of bluntness, and the concept of a “fair go” are the essence of our culture.

Implicitly accepting the protection of the USA through the United Nations, while bemoaning their “aggression” is dishonest.

It’s not sticking up for our mates.

It’s not giving America a fair go.

It’s un-Australian

It’s good to know that

February 20, 2003

It’s good to know that some people are still willing to protest against violent dictators.