Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Grumps, waffles, farts, snorts, and harrumphs: assorted notes

Victoria has had laws against swearing since 1966. Recently the Victorian Government has been tinkering with laws regarding how offensive language is going to be punished, but they haven't made any radical changes - swearing was illegal, and still is illegal. But 'Things stay just as they were before' doesn't sell papers, so the papers have all been looking for angles: 'Aussies to be fined for swearing', cries Breitbart, while The Age waffles 'Big fines for those who cry foul'. And to be fair there are questions to be asked on this story - for instance, why it's a story at all. Labor introduced the laws on a two-year trial basis. Could it, y'know, be political bias in the papers?


All in all, it would seem to be a pretty effective non-story story -but then papers are full of that sort of stuff. Not only the papers - Geoff's been getting his knickers in a knot saying the Victorian Government has banned swearing, which of course they haven't, and then uses this false premise as an excuse to go on a long political rant, filled with as much swearing as he can get away with (lots, as it turns out.) I strongly disagree with the basis of this essay - you shouldn't ever use an excuse for swearing. Swearing is much too important for that. Swear words deal in concepts ranging from sex to cursing to the body to prayer: you shouldn't ever excuse yourself for talking of those things.


Meanwhile, the Great Big New Ban That Isn't Actually New on swearing is also inspiring poetry by cranky young men, and a big protest. But then, just about everything the Victorian Government will do would inspire a big protest - they're the Liberals after all, and, hey, you might as well start ranting and raving now before they actually do stuff too terrible, just to stay ahead of the curve. It might actually end up helping the Liberals stay in, but then, hey, all the better - so much more excuse for ranting and raving.


I suppose you haven't been following the story about plain paper packaging on cigarettes, and nor have I. But despite my not following the story my ears did prick up when I heard someone from anti-smoking group ASH talk about this (I heard them when I wasn't listening to a story about plain paper packaging, you understand) -
Health and child protection organisations have urged the Liberal/National Parties to reject tobacco industry threats and support health legislation mandating plain tobacco packs.
And there's that word again -
The call follows threats by the head of British American Tobacco Australia that the country will be flooded by cheap cigarettes if the health policy to reduce tobacco advertising goes ahead.
The threat is apparently they will cut the price on cigarettes! Man, I wish a chocolate company would threaten me right now. Maybe I could get some French creperie's to threaten me, too. That'd be sweeeeeet. Go on, you bastards, I can take it!


There's nothing do gooders like better than taking bad jobs off people in developing countries and leaving them with no jobs instead. Even so, I was a little surprised by this ad for Z Energy, a New Zealand petrol company, in which they proudly proclaim they are returning call centre jobs to New Zealand. There are two sorts of people who might have problems with this - the people getting the calls (no-one wants to speak to a call centre), and the people doing the calls (it's a massively horrible job). Z Energy appears to be giving one bunch of New Zealanders a chance to yell and rant and fume, and another bunch of New Zealanders a chance to be yelled and ranted and fumed at. Next up, they might declare a minor civil war. That'd really be the shit, hey?


Mitzi G Burger said...

After reading your posts, I always feel ahead of the curve! Warming up my ranting muscles and setting my temper to "rave" mode.

TimT said...

You are kind - I do enjoy writing and reading posts in this 'note' style, not sure everyone else does though...

Email: timhtrain - at -

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