Did globalisation kill satire? And is that for the best?

How should we judge someone's words? By intent, by effect, or what? How much does unintended offence matter? Also, LILY ALLEN and TWERKING and EATING IRISH BABIES. I do therefore humbly offer it to public consideration that of the hundred and twenty thousand children already computed, twenty thousand may be reserved for breed, whereof only … Continue reading Did globalisation kill satire? And is that for the best?

Globalisation and the death of literary Australiana

Anne Treasure has written an excellent piece on the impact of digitisation and globalisation on the publishing industry. The piece is global in scope, and works well in the context of UK and US publishers and writers. The picture is more complicated in Australia, where the global shift creates an additional problem. Traditionally books by … Continue reading Globalisation and the death of literary Australiana

Locals are from Earth; migrants are from Venus, Mars, Alpha Centauri, wherever

THINGS MIGRANTS SAY IN POLITE CONVERSATION (WHICH ARE TRUE): "Hello, new friend-of-friend. [if person notes ethnicity in conversation] Yes, I do like it here, thank you. Yes, I’m intending to stay here. Yup, the weather is great and the people are friendly. No, haha, fair, I’m probably still gonna support my home country team against … Continue reading Locals are from Earth; migrants are from Venus, Mars, Alpha Centauri, wherever

The importance of framing

In the lead-up to the 2010 UK general election, many civil libertarians of my acquaintance (not solely Screaming Loony Privatise The Army Libertarians, but people of all economic stripes who believe that broadly, trials are a good thing and torture is a bad thing) were suggesting that for all a putative Tory government's likely failings, … Continue reading The importance of framing

To the Daily Mail, Genghis Khan was a fellow-traveller

The simple fact of the matter is that capitalist democracy, for all its crippling limitations, has been immeasurably less oppressive and a lot more democratic than any communist regime, whatever the latter's achievements in economic, social and other fields. - notorious communist Ralph Miliband. Hat tip to @durrant_james on the Twitters.

How To Calibrate A Booze Up So You’re Halfway Likely To Die

So Dan Nolan was wondering how much beer it would take to kill you. It turns out the answer (LD50) is 42.5 cans in an hour, or 61 cans in a 24-hour day for a normal drinker, or 96.5 cans in a 24-hour day for a heavy drinker who hasn't yet developed serious liver damage. … Continue reading How To Calibrate A Booze Up So You’re Halfway Likely To Die

Bands of distinctions

I an a civilised gentleman with a fine reputation; my father has a reputation as a smart bastard who stirs up shit. He also introduced me to the delightful and amazing Kirstie MacColl and by proxy, Johnny Marr. I feel the need to stick up my dad's Trayvon commentary, because it needs a home. This … Continue reading Bands of distinctions