Saturday, October 27, 2007

Climate change skeptics. Are they skeptical about anything else?

Catholic Archbishop George Pell is a cretin. This week, he reaffirmed his view that climate change is not a big deal and that the church doesn't need to do anything about it because "radical environmentalists are more than up to the task of moralising their own agenda and imposing it on people through fear." He is a climate change 'skeptic' - an epithet so embarrassing that it has even been discarded by our time-travelling dwarf-minister John Howard. George Pell personally believes that The Virgin Mary bodily ascended up to heaven, that communion wine literally turns into Jesus' blood as you drink it and that all sin in the world originated from a talking snake that offered fruit to the world's first woman. Presumably, the idea of anthropogenic climate change is just too far fetched. At what point does Cardinal Pell's world-view become evidence based? He has said that church leaders should be 'allergic to nonsense'. The entire basis of his employment is the propagation of bronze-age mythology! If people really did become 'allergic to nonsense' then George Pell would be out of a job.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Kingdom

I really wanna see that movie The Kingdom but nobody wants to see it. Typical discussions go like this:

Me: Hey you wanna see The Kingdom?
Deadbeat Friend: Errrrrr, do you think it'll be good?
Me: OF COURSE it will be good. It's an ACTION MOVIE!
Deadbeat Friend: Errrrr, it's gonna be terrible. It'll be racist and it'll be shit because Hollywood doesn't understand terrorism and Islam and Saudi Arabia and blah fucking blah.

But who does? Of course the message is going to be confusing and jumbled and insensitive. It's HOLLYWOOD! Hollywood doesn't even know shit about Hollywood. I'm not expecting intelligent and thoughtful insights into globalisation and terrorism in a post - 9\11 world because when I want that I go to a fucking library. Action movies like The Kingdom are about entertainment, not learning, and it seems like all my deadbeat friends are missing the point about this and it frustrates the shit out of me.

Malcolm Turnbull and the Third World

Malcolm Turnbull don't give me that shit about Tasmania's new pulp mill 'operating under the most stringent environmental conditions in the world' because I know that you know that deforestation is happening most rapidly in the following countries: Brazil, Bolivia, the fucking Congo, Indonesia and Australia. We are up there with some of the most fucked places on earth - those countries don't regulate their timber industries! Tassie's pulp mill will have the most stringent environmental standards by default, because any environmental standards are more stringent than no environmental standards. I don't buy your bullshit!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Five songs written by once successful bands who are now washed up in which they lyrically incorporate the title of one of their past hits in an attempt to remind you that they used to be good:

1. 17 Again - Eurythmics. The Eurythmics were great. They were responsible for some of the most memorable hits of the 80s whilst being both a commercial and critical success. Their latest greatest hits release Eurythmics Ultimate Collection contains hit after hit - but which song did they select for track #1? I've Got A Life, a new song which is not nearly on par with their former glories and which you have to sit through (or skip past) to get to their superb single Sweet Dreams. As if to further illustrate that Annie & Dave aren't above melding their classic back catalogue with their lacklustre current efforts the pair conspicuously incorporate the line 'Sweet dreams are made of anything' into one of their new tracks, 17 again. I guess they were hoping to induce a psychosomatic response in the listener that would cause them to involuntarily think 'Hey, these guys used to be really good'.

2.Welcome To The World - 10cc. 10cc were one of the coolest British pop bands ever, until 1977 when half of the quartet left to do inventive, experimental pop records*. The remaining two members of the band continued under the 10cc name, released a couple of decent albums and descended into a valley of maudlin, M.O.R. pop blandness. The biggest single for this incarnation of 10cc was 1978's Dreadlock Holiday ('I don't like reggae, oh nooo' pretty much sums up my reaction to the song) so it's unsurprising that they artlessly name-drop the title into the lyrics of Welcome To The World from their forgettable album of 1980, Look Hear (2 stars -

*The departing duo Godley & Creme actually incorporate the chorus of 10cc's first single Donna into Group Life from their dark, satirical album L, however it's a device cleverly used in a song satirising life in successful band. You can get away with these things if you do them well.

3. Welcome To The Room... Sara - Fleetwood Mac. My love for Fleetwood Mac is like a passionate love affair. However I've never been able to reconcile this love with one Stevie Nicks. Sure, some of my favourite Fleetwood songs are by Ms. Nicks but I can't seem to shake the feeling that she is simply an average artist who had a few flashes of inspired genius and then just spent the rest of her career hanging around musicians with real talent like a blonde, coked-up leech. On Fleetwood Mac's 1987 album Tango In The Night (containing the huge radio hits Everywhere and Sweet Little Lies both written by the infinitely more talented Christine McVie) Nicks contributed the song Welcome To The Room... Sara - a reference to the hit single Sara from Fleetwood's 1979 masterpiece Tusk. Why not just release a single called Hey, Do You Guys Remember Rhiannon?

4. Tonight - New Kids On The Block (Remember them?). Check out this excerpt from NKOTB's song Tonight: Remember when we said, girl, please don't go, and how I'd be loving you forever, taught you 'bout hangin' tough as long as you got the right stuff, didn't we, girls, ooh, didn't we, girls, aah? Leaving aside for a moment that those lyrics are utter shite, let's do a count on how many of their appalling songs are mentioned in one single verse:
  1. Please Don't Go Girl
  2. I'll Be Loving You (Forever)
  3. Hangin' Tough
  4. You Got It (The Right Stuff)

That's every single from their previous album except for one. These guys should be ashamed (of themselves).

5. Glass Onion - The Beatles. Oh, Come on! I told you about Strawberry Fields - I told you about the walrus and me - I told you about the fool on the hill - Lady Madonna trying to make ends meet etc. This John Lennon character seems positively desperate to convince us that his little band, The Beatles has written a few memorable songs! This shameless plug appears on their barely noticed self-titled release of 1968 (often dismissively referred to as 'The White Album'). The band was so desperate at this point, they even resorted to allowing the drummer to sing on a couple of tracks. Enough said.