This is the archive of the original tigtogblog
Posts begin below the Feed Modules from the blogs named above.
Hoyden About Town
Latest Posts from Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog
http://viv.id.au/blog/ is the URL of the new Hoyden About Town (note no more hyphenating)
From time to time posts may appear here if something happens to my webhost, but otherwise that's it.
Seeya over there, folks.
P.S. for anyone so moved, comments on all archived posts here remain open and I will still receive an email alert so that I can respond. And as Vicki reminded me, RSS details for the new blog are in the comments below.
And my perennial favourite Chris Clarke at Creek Running North reminds us why we should Hang Up and Drive already.
Seems rather attractive doesn't it? Harmless? Innocent even?
Don't you believe it.
A close relative of this tree has been working fiendishly for several years now to lever up one of the large concrete slabs that makes up my driveway.
Today its nefarious scheme bore fruit, so to speak. As I was minding my own non-tree-related business, washing down the rear window of the togmobile before sallying forth, this tree's patsy, the concrete slab raised more than 5cm above the one adjacent, tripped me over!
I swear I heard a sussurative snigger. When I uprighted myself, I knew what had to be done.
Dear reader, I kicked it right in the damn trunk. Exactly where I'm going to drill the holes for the poison.
How can someone be considered a symbol of freedom when he thinks he's entitled to stifle, control, oppress and dictate the lives of adult women? Granted, his "girlfriends" are employees of his, but in this country we generally believe that part of freedom is the freedom of oppression from your employer - my boss is not allowed to tap my phones, tell me who I can date, or give me a curfew. (For the record, it's shit like this that makes it hard for me to imagine a world where prostitution is ever strictly a labor transaction instead of about giving men power and control over women's bodies, as I note in the comments of this thread. The "girlfriends" are well-paid whores, but they demonstrate what the problem is when discussing prostitution, which is we assume that it's about selling sex, but most of the time it's about selling the opportunity to abuse women.)The argument that the sexual revolution has bifurcated into a misogynist "revolution" where women's sexuality is oppressed by being shoehorned into performing for men versus a genuine feminist sexual revolution where women's sexual pleasure is one of the tools for establishing egalitarian relationships between men and women is one I hadn't seen so clearly stated. before She's right that it's vital not to conflate the two. Read the whole thing.
A longer post of mine discussing this Age article, with links to critiques of the studies cited by MRAs showing how they misrepresent the actuality of domestic violence, is up at Larvatus Prodeo.A new survey shows that one in five Victorians believe women are just as likely as men to violently assault their partner.The dramatic shift in public opinion stems from the rise in fathers' groups who say women are just as violent as men in relationships, reports Fairfax newspapers.
Mr Moodie said the change in attitude was disturbing given that domestic violence was the leading cause of preventable death for women in Victoria aged 15 to 44.
"There may be a reluctance to see men as the more violent sex, and an appeal in the idea of gender equality in regards to domestic violence. But the data simply doesn't support this view," La Trobe University men's issues expert Michael Flood said."Men's and fathers' rights groups have been pushing this myth for some time and draw on some actual research, but they are very selective in that research."
Apparently all the screen-capture nerds were much more interested in the Mirror-Uhura, but they only show her from the waist up, so I had to resort to the action figure to show you the even better boots.
No wonder the bridge crew got all discombobulated.
image from here
Let Fixateur guide you through the passages of purple prose to the safe harbour of proper perspective. Check out his work in The Case of Mountains v. Molehills today!
From the background section of the Senate Committee Minority Report:
The Minority Report points out three major areas of misinterpretation of the Bill, each of which is detailed and refuted.
The aim of Transparent Advertising and Notification of Pregnancy Counselling Services Bill 2005 (to be referred to as 'the bill' from here on after) is to regulate pregnancy counselling services to prevent misleading or deceptive advertising or notification of pregnancy counselling services.
On the recommendation of the Selection of Bills Committee, the bill was referred to the Community Affairs Legislation Committee for further examination into the adequacy of the legislation in improving the regulation of pregnancy counselling services. The Committee was also required to determine whether counselling provided by Government funded pregnancy counselling services is objective, non-directive and includes information on all three pregnancy counselling options.This bill does not discriminate against any particular pregnancy counselling service, whether anti-choice or pro-choice.
It is designed to implement the necessary regulatory measures to prevent the misleading and deceptive advertising of pregnancy counselling services. It will not force services that have a philosophical opposition to abortion to refer women to termination clinics, but as the legislation clearly sets out, it requires these services to advertise if they do not provide that particular service, so women can be fully informed.
Misinterpretation 1: Bill forces pregnancy counselling services to refer for abortion
The legislation simply does not "force" pregnancy counselling services to refer for abortion. It does require services to be upfront about whether or not they offer or advise on all three options to women seeking advice.
Misinterpretation 2: Bill forces counsellors to participate in an "illegal act"
As this bill does not seek to change counselling behaviour, merely how they advertise that behaviour, if they are not acting illegally now it is impossible for them to act illegally by continuing their current behaviour.
If so - called "pro-life" pregnancy counselling services are proud of their stance, then advertising that they do not refer for terminations should not be an issue.Misinterpretation 3: Bill favours Pro-choice pregnancy counselling services
This bill is not a debate about the legality of abortion it is about providing women with upfront information about the services that they are contacting for pregnancy counselling.
The minority reports take:
When questioned on how the bill would "favour" only pro-choice pregnancy counselling services, Festival of Light claimed:There's quite a bit more, and the so-called Majority Report (signed by 3 Senators) recommending against adoption of the Bill is fascinating reading of rhetoric informed by an anti-choice agenda, incorporating nearly all the misconceptions outlined in the Minority Report (signed by 6 Senators) above.Because it would provide penalties only for those pregnancy counselling organisations which do not directly refer for abortion and no penalties for agencies like the Pregnancy Advisory Centre in Woodville which does not provide ongoing support for women who want to continue their pregnancy.
In response to this accusation, Senator Stott Despoja stated:If they advertised as a non-directive counselling service and they failed to provide those three options, you bet I'd be happy and they would be guilty under this legislation! It applies across the board
Full Senate Committe reports on this bill here
It follows on from our tied-for-#1-slot family favorite must-see programme, Spicks and Specks, (equal #1 is the new Dr Who). Then there's the still amusing Glasshouse, and the comfy slipper of David and Margaret At The Movies before bedtime.
We love our Wednesday nights in.
There. Now I've articulated a strategy every bit as coherent and likely to succeed as the Bush-Cheney-Sullivan strategy.Well done that man.
Hat-tip to Tim Lambert.
There's some very interesting writing on the religious-authoritarian worldview around at the moment. Authoritarian childrearing practices such as those recommended and followed by many religious groups are an ancient tradition, and in certain societies add materially to survival prospects. But is authoritarian childrearing a successful strategy for producing adults capable of achieving what they want in our modern society?
Coturnix, guest-blogging at Echidne of the Snakes, offers a round-up of the latest research (follow the links in his post) regarding authoritarian childrearing, how it instils a worldview of extreme competitiveness, suspicion and isolationism, and what that means for attitudes towards sex, gender and the institution of marriage.
Coturnix on Politics, part I - an overview
Sara Robinson, an ex-fundamentalist, is guest-blogging at Orcinus on the authoritarian personality, its impact on people belonging to such groups, and how people who come to leave fundamentalism find the motivation and courage to do so.
Cracks In The Wall, Part I: Defining the Authoritarian Personality
Cracks In The Wall, Part II: Listening to the Leavers
When I was about 10, in the mid-70s, there was a big old picture palace about a mile away that still did the Saturday matinee sessions where we got one movie, then a couple of serials, and then another movie. We usually got a black and white classic adventure, then an old Western serial and a Space adventure serial, then a more recent movie. It was absolutely full of kids chucking lollies around the place, racing Jaffas down the aisles, and scaring each other about how some other time some kid died when someone up in the gallery dropped a drinkcan on their head. It was magic.
And that's where I first met Flash Gordon, long before I ever saw the camp 1980 movie remake.
And Buster Crabbe before he got caught out in a peroxide rain.
1. One book you have read more than once
Some people find an appreciation of the nuts and bolts limits their suspension of disbelief - I find that only if the book has been badly written, when a particularly clunky piece of exposition or plot-hustling can wrench one out of the bookworld. Knowing more about the authorial toolbox enhances the pleasure of a well-written piece, for me at least.
And on the 1st September, I'll start reading Patrick White's The Vivisector with the other members and lurkers at the Patrick White Reader's Group Blog.
It was a revelation: they all agreed on the basics of dates, places and major events, but the interpretation and tone of the books was so different! Yet they were all supposed to be history, based on fact - how could one write of Richelieu as a great reformer and another write of him as a reactionary whose restructuring of French legislature and taxation to bolster the monarchy led directly to the bloodbath of the Revolution? And why did none of them think the royalty and aristocrats written of by Dumas in his Musketeer books were romantically noble and wonderful at all? I never looked at my nana's Georgette Heyer and Jean Plaidy books the same way again.
Matilda T. Zombie Queen: because she's more up-to-date with SF than I am, and ghoulish too.
Blogger on the Cast Iron Balcony: Helen seems to read lots of things I don't (yet) and that's cool.
Don Quixote of Silent Speaking: he's spending too much time out and about with that cameraphone, and some inside bookthinking time will do him good.
BiblioBillaBong's Ron: I should tag at least one actual book blogger, yes?
I just have to mention how my jaw dropped to the floor when I heard on the radio that one of the men charged over a group rape is apparently of the impression that "but I thought she was a prostitute" constitutes some sort of defense. Right. Because if somebody's selling something, we're perfectly justified to just take that something without paying for it, aren't we?
Right. A condition requiring years of treatment to get better, and which in the meantime means he needs help dressing and bathing and more, is not disability enough to access Centrelink benefits just because he's not going to have it all his life (unless of course it kills him)? What ignorant, poorly trained moron came up with that decision?
Well, it wasn't Centrelink themselves who made the decision, under the new welfare changes whereby anyone applying for a disability support pension must demonstrate that they are unable to work 15 hours a week. Apparently the rules make no exclusions for obvious no-brainers like people undergoing chemotherapy. The actual decision was, of course, made by one of those outsourced private agencies that conduct Centrelink appraisals these days.
One would think that requiring agencies that conduct Centrelink disability appraisals to at the very least have wheelchair access would be the absolute minimum requirement for tenders for these contracts, but apparently not.
(Crossposted at Larvatus Prodeo)
The reporter had to punch him close-fisted before he let her go, and the watching police officers only intervened when Francis' bodyguard pushed her away from the group (at which point, to be fair, they realised they had not just been watching "a bit of fun" and urged the reporter to press charges, which she refused to do.)
Joe Francis, the founder of the "Girls Gone Wild" empire, is humiliating me. He has my face pressed against the hood of a car, my arms twisted hard behind my back. He's pushing himself against me, shouting: "This is what they did to me in Panama City!"
It's after 3 a.m. and we're in a parking lot on the outskirts of Chicago. Electronic music is buzzing from the nightclub across the street, mixing easily with the laughter of the guys who are watching this, this me-pinned-and-helpless thing.
Francis isn't laughing.
He has turned on me, and I don't know why. He's going on and on about Panama City Beach, the spring break spot in northern Florida where Bay County sheriff's deputies arrested him three years ago on charges of racketeering, drug trafficking and promoting the sexual performance of a child. As he yells, I wonder if this is a flashback, or if he's punishing me for being the only blond in sight who's not wearing a thong. This much is certain: He's got at least 80 pounds on me and I'm thinking he's about to break my left arm. My eyes start to stream tears.
Commentary at Feministe, Pandagon, Ezra Klein and I'm sure many more feminist blogs. Twisty's post-operatively posting less frequently these days, alas, and her last post is skewering Tucker Max instead, but I'm sure she'll get around to Joe Francis soon.
Approximately 140,000 people from Hiroshima died by December 1945 either in the immediate effects of the blast, in the following days/weeks due to acute radiation poisoning and in the following months due to short-term residual effects of radiation exposure. It is almost impossible to calculate how many more people died years later from long-term residual effects of the radiation.
[images of models of Hiroshima from here ]
Australia made EC available without prescription in January 2004. As I'm outside the firing lines on this at the moment (vasectomised husband and only just-turned-pubescent children) I have no idea how comprehensive the general sexual education in Australia about EC is, but I don't think we're as comprehensive as the French. It is obviously an area I do need to become more informed about, because I don't think that last line in the quote above can be emphasised enough:Improving Access: The French Experience
The abortion rate for France is already one of the lowest in the world: At 12 per 1,000 women aged 14-44, it is half the U.S. rate. Even so, when emerging evidence in the late 1990s suggested that the rate was stabilizing instead of continuing to decrease, the French government responded swiftly - in part, by providing better access to emergency contraception.
Emergency contraception has been available in France since the early 1970s, and a product specifically packaged for postcoital use became available in May 1999. Just one month later, the French government decided to switch the drug to nonprescription status, making it available on request from pharmacists, who in France are gatekeepers for all medications. (France does not have an over-the-counter status equivalent to that in the United States.) Women who purchase emergency contraception from pharmacies can have 65% of the cost reimbursed to them under national health insurance; the method is available for free from family planning clinics.
The French government has taken extraordinary steps to ensure that adolescents in particular have access to the method. After 18 months of debate, the national assembly passed a law in December 2000 allowing public and parochial high school nurses to provide emergency contraception. In January 2002, French officials issued a decree allowing minors to obtain emergency contraceptives from a pharmacy at no charge and without requiring authorization from a parent; pharmacists are required to counsel young women and provide them with information about other forms of birth control.
Since 1999, over 1.5 million treatments have been sold in France, 97% without a prescription. There have been no reports of adverse events. Moreover, experts note that widespread availability of emergency contraception has spurred a renewed interest in all methods of contraception. "There is a more open discussion - among pharmacists, nurses in school, across all society - about what to do to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases," says Elizabeth Aubeny, president of the French Association for Contraception. "And the more you talk about contraception, the more women use it and the fewer abortions there are."
the more you talk about contraception, the more women use it and the fewer abortions there are.
I thought there would be gazillions of shots of this to choose from on the web, but no. A few very blurry screen captures, and this one, which is obviously a still shot taken during the film's production, as you can see the crew member off to the right.
mr tog and I recently rewatched the DVD of the original theatrical release of Dune and thoroughly enjoyed it yet again - we've seen it enough times now that it's one of those films we can talk over the top of as we wish, particularly about all the bits from the book we wished were there, yet we can shut up for the best bits.
It's a flawed but brilliant gem of a film. I think it's utterly incomprehensible unless you've read the book (and the 3-hour extended TV Alan Smithee version didn't improve that, it just ruined the rhythm of the original with the unbelievably dreadful storyboarded narrations , so no wonder Lynch took his directing credit off). The only people I know who really like it are all people who loved the novel enough to reread it at least once, so that they are utter Dune nerds.
Like most Dune nerds, I did actually enjoy seeing the cut scenes from the theatrical release in the Smithee version even though I hated the interpolated narratives and cheapness about special effects (eg Fremen eyes) in the restored scenes, but I so wish that the oft-mooted but never funded full 4-hour Director's Cut will one day soon appear.
I've long been envious of Lucy Tartan's ongoing blog-project, where she photographs the outdoor sculptures of Melbourne and discourses critically thereupon. I thought "now, there's a bit of all right" and "how can I shamelessly get myself a gig like that?". Except I didn't want it to be anything I had to think about too hard.
Then I saw this, so the theme has chosen itself. The graffiti of Sydney, as various pieces catch my eye, for whatever reason.
Obviously, for the piece above, artistic merit has no part in it at all.
It nonetheless intrigued me: is it just a sniggering adolescent stunt from someone who was forced to watch too much Dick Emery and Benny Hill when young and impressionable?
Is it stinging social commentary on the inherently bourgeois nature of street-front art galleries, and the pretensions contained therein?
Or is it just a tart summation of this particular shop, which does look rather isolated and squalid as one climbs the hill from Central Station towards Cleveland Street? As you can see, the shop's own sign-writing has obviously been a Dodgy Brothers job, and the even more crudely rendered F in the contrasting colour emphasises this vividly.
Enough arty-farty bollocks. For now.
(Reminds me of another recent breastfeeding foofaraw)
Cross-dressing NZ lawyer Rob Moodie: "The deeper the cover-up, the prettier the frocks,"
(His story has inspired some approving but purple-in-parts prose: [ link ] [link ]
Yeah. I know there's nothing amusing about the last one. For once it's about NSW rape statistics rather than foreign figures which can be rhetorically dismissed by "it's different here". Even the recently convicted gang rapists lured their victim using a boy she already knew to gain her trust.
Its origin is not simply fear after "9-11 changed everything", but a growing conflation of nationalism with unquestioning support of the current government and also with conservative religious beliefs, leading to heated charges of anti-patriotism and 'supporting terrorism' against anybody who criticises the war, the country's leadership or homegrown Christian fundamentalist religious intolerance.
It gets to the stage where neighbours, who a few years ago were just OK folks who would be even better if they shared one's voting and worship habits, are now spoken of as at best blind fools and often literally as traitorous, evil and perverted if they don't march in lockstep with the warhawks. In return, the doves offer up rhetoric of greedy baby-killers-for-oil imperialism and chickenhawk death-beasts sacrificing everyone else's liberty for their safety. It should be needless to say, but in the current climate I am careful to state it unequivocally: both positions are hyperbolic caricatures of more complex backgrounds to people's final opinion for or against the War in Iraq.
The recent Lebanon/Israel hostilities, with the shameful indifference to non-combatant safety shown by both Hezbollah and the IDF, have made me heartsick as I listen to the xenophobic rhetoric ratchet up further notches. I remember that in every armed conflict it has ever been thus, and that this too will eventually fade as China rises as a greater threat to Western hegemony (then we can all be xenophobic about commies again), but that's small comfort.
On a mailing list a few weeks ago, someone linked to this, part of a booklet for American soldiers in WW2 about distinguishing between Chinese and Japanese. Even then it was considered too pandering to stereotypes and was quickly withdrawn from later editions, but wow. Most Westerners in large cities these days have worked with both Chinese and Japanese people at some time, and would find the characterisations below quaint, but nonetheless offensive.
Read the whole HOW TO SPOT A JAP booklet here.
My point is: people in 50 years will look back at the archives of what is written now about conservatives/liberals, Republicans/Democrats, Liberal Party/Labor Party, hawks/doves, Israel/Palestine/Hezbollah/etc, USA/Iraq, CoW/Al Qaeda etcetera ad nauseum, and find much of the polemic flung about to be equally offensive, but also equally quaint, because the political map will have utterly changed.
Our teams, our 'dogs in the fight', our fellow-travellers of today, are all caught up in the exigencies of this particular geopolitical conflict. The labels we hang on our opponents to hook into our and others' emotional engagement are mostly subjective, arbitrary and temporary when we look at the larger drifts, ebbs and flows of geopolitical history.
At the recent FIFA World Cup, the chant by British fans in the stands to their German counterparts of "my grandad killed your grandad" was considered tacky, tasteless and yes, offensive, but not really fighting words. It was an old wound, one on which the scab had dropped off, and the scar no longer even as tender as in the days of Basil Fawlty desperately trying not to mention the war.
The perceptions of Arabs and other Muslims have varied so much in the last century: from Lawrence of Arabia's noble desert allies to greedy oil-sheiks and Mediterranean bellydancing resorts to noble mujahadeen fighting the Soviets to reactionary religious fanatics to our guy Saddam against the evil Ayatollah to evil Saddam invading Kuwait to alQaeda terrorists and the Axis of Evil. All it will take is a shift in the geopolitical wind to be shoulder to shoulder with noble Islamic allies against the boojums du jour.
In the meantime, before we can get to regarding our present divisions as quaint signifiers of a bygone age, people are being killed, young men and women are being desensitised into merciless killers on all sides, infrastructure and livelihoods are being destroyed, new resentments are being fostered to nurture future revenge, and the arms merchants are contentedly watching the profits in their Swiss accounts accumulate.
This is not the last war of civilisation. No war ever really has been, not even in the Cold War of the nuclear age, and despite the paranoia about nuclear weapons they're not really on the table this time either. It's nasty, brutish and horrific, like every other war; some cultures will end up no longer socioeconomically dominant in areas they traditionally were; whatever geopolitical gains are made by the "winners" will be mostly largely irrelevant in 20 years time, maybe less.
We must be on guard against the creeping xenophobia. This doesn't mecessarily mean you have to be pacifistic, at least not totally. If your life/home/livelihood is threatened, it is right to defend yourself, as would I. But even there, self defense should be proportionate. Just remember your enemies are not evil monsters, they too are human.
And your domestic opponents are literally breathing the same air. Take a deep breath, take a long look around, and really look at those people around who don't believe exactly the same as you do. They're not really that bad, you know. Their photo albums are just as full of cute kids, joyful weddings and happy holidays. Step back from the mistrust of the Other and search for the fellowship of the Neighbour. We could all do more of it than we have been for a while.