Friday, May 22, 2009

Tim Andrews, Young Liberal Hotties (again), Michael Duffy, Stephen Conroy, censorship and voluntary euthanasia, and a new role for hookers


(Above: continuing our cavalcade of young Liberal hotties, now courtesy of the fine and caring folk at the Daily Telegraph - next week's story will of course feature alarm about the moral decline and fall of western civilization as we know it).

A smorgasbord (Swedish for open sandwich), usually deployed with the help of a bain-marie (or water bath, from the French) is as Australian as apple pie. Well you don't expect Australians to eat witchetty grubs and kangaroo tail soup, do you?

So let's tuck in before the politically correct start getting excited about pate eating gourmets and chardonnay drinkers.

First up, fresh from my correspondent in America - currently stationed somewhere between Utah and Vegas - is that the mainstream media in America is all agog about the drill bit doctor who saved a boy's life. It's old news here (Doctor uses drill to save boy's life) but in the States it seems it's the new Crocodile Dundee, using your average household drill to bore into the head. That's not a drill, this is a drill. Oh yeah, drill baby drill.

And writing about the sex lives of young Liberals is guaranteed to get you lots of hits, with poor old Tim Andrews still in the wars. Now the Daily Telegraph has joined in, with Hot Young Liberals cause a blogger bother, and a link to a gallery of Hot Young Liberals.

I wonder if there's a case for an action against the Daily Telegraph, based on the use of "hot" to describe the photos, on the basis of misleading and deceptive conduct. Guess not, because Tim himself suggested that his subjects were hotties, but really on the scale of internet porn, the best you could describe the photos as being is tepid warm, elbow checked and ready for a baby's bath.

In an update on his blog, poor old Tim can't believe the fuss down under:

Update: I really can’t be bothered commenting on the sillyness of some in the Australian Media at this stage. But, for the benefit of the mentally-challenged, allow me to clarify: I have nothing to do with the Lib Students or YL’s anymore. This isn’t any sort of recruitment drive. This was a joke between friends. A joke. Humour is a concept the Australian political scene is tragically devoid of, so if you’re unaware of the concept, you can look it up on Wikipedia here. So stop being so uptight, or thinking that I’m pimping off girls in some nefarious plan.

Pimping for the Liberal party. Now there's a way forward. It'll require a little makeover, like Sean Jeans going from hard core hip hop mogul to heading up a big clothing and fragrance company, but it's do-able (and your supposedly waterproof jacket leaks like a sieve Sean Jeans).

But you have to sympathize with Andrews. Now it's the Telegraph pimping his "hot pics" on its front page. Pass me a lamington before I hyper-ventilate. A couple of these girls are wearing bikinis!! Ah remember the good old days of the Bondi beach inspector, and the ruler determining what exact inch of lasciviousness could be thrust at an Australian male's nose before he became a danger to himself, women and the stability of Australian society.

And it was just a jolly jape amongst chums, and not a white of humor in the Australian political scene, and there's dour old Pru Goward telling us people join political parties because of the facts, not the figures. Give me figures any day, if it means that we don't end up with the po faced mealy mouthed likes of a John Howard or a Kevin Rudd.

And in other news, the esteemed Michael Duffy, columnist for the Sydney Morning Herald and inspiration for these pages, has broken a relatively long silence by returning to the fray with Web filtering pulls plug on euthanasia debate.

And we won't have a word said against him. Duffy is appalled by the treatment of Dr Philip Nitschke, undecided about voluntary euthanasia and wanting to find out more, only to discover that the Australian government is going to ban the website containing the online version of his book The Peaceful Pill Handbook.

A copy of the blacklist (leaked to wikileaks.org) shows the peacefulpillhandbook.com in undistinguished company, lying in the murky alphabetical territory between panty-ass.com and pickyourperversion.com.

Well the perfidies of Stephen Conroy, Minister for Communications, in this absurd and surreal attempt to take the overflowing intertubes back to the dark days of the nineteen fifties, are old news to the geeks who've been campaigning hard against him, but in recent times, it's been quiet times as Conroy burrows away in the dark hatching his cunning filtering plans. 

As the Duffster notes, there's nothing like talk of voluntary euthanasia to send Australian governments into a frenzy.

Nitschke says the Australian Government's fervour in attacking voluntary euthanasia is unique. In 1996, it over-rode the Northern Territory's law legalising the practice. In 2006, it banned the use of telephones, faxes, emails and the internet to disseminate or acquire information for the purpose of counselling or inciting suicide, or of learning how to do it. (Nitschke's website is now based overseas.) In 2007, it banned his book. (This followed a complaint from Right To Life, which in this case argued for not just a right but an obligation.) And soon, if the pilot project proceeds to implementation, as is expected, it could make access to his book online not just illegal but physically impossible.

The absurd attempt by Conroy to introduce social engineering alongside the banning of pornography might just be his undoing. Here's hoping.

If you've been inside a nursing home for the elderly lately - I have, my mother's in one - the reality of a prolonged, totally circumscribed and completely helpless set of final days before dying might just make you wonder how irrational this government fervor is. No complaints about the nursing home, or the staff, but it's not a life, nor a form of living easily contemplated.

Duffy ends on the point that it's the elderly that care most about the issue:

Nearly all of them are over 60. Nitschke says he's noticed the same in Britain, where he recently finished giving a number of talks. "Many elderly people see it as an important issue," he observes, "but younger people can be very critical of what I'm saying."

It's a rare case where the old - or some of them - are more radical than the young. But as Nitschke tells his audiences, waiting until you're old and sick before you think about this subject might mean you've waited too long. Especially if the laws continue to close in.

Ah well, to be fair, the young are more obsessed with bedding the latest hot young Liberal to hit the ether, and why not. Death is always a long way away until it gets close. 

Meantime, I can't wait for a showdown between hottest young Libette and spunkiest young Trotskyite. Now there's politics with a purpose.

And Duffster, just keep hammering away at Conroy, whenever you get a chance. If libertarian means anything, it means Conroy should take a powder and go quietly into the night.

Lastly, to counter-balance the gloom of voluntary euthanasia talk, why not head over to Ross Fitzgerald for a sorbet to close out the meal. In Get over the sex hang-ups, he blames the current woes of the Cronulla rugby league football team on the way it's full of fundamentalist born-again Christians, with one former player Jason Stevens even professing to be celibate.

Fitzgerald approvingly quotes Australian Sex party convener Fiona Patten's suggestion that the leagues clubs form a commercial relationship with their local brothel so they can bung on a group sex do for a fair price, with health and safety guaranteed. Yep indeedy, they ruined the game when they made the role of the hooker in the scrum redundant, so now it's time to bring back the hooker in a new and positive way.

So everything Fitzgerald says makes hearty sense, but I still think he missed the main game. Why isn't rugby league trying to hook up its players with young Liberal hotties, who read Ayn Rand so they can learn how to worship men and join them in their will to power and make the world right? It'd be a marriage made in heaven.

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