The Pencil Guy: Hourann's illogical blog

Some bits and pieces

Thursday 4 January 2007 at 11:38 pm

Here’s a few things that didn’t make it into a full post, as I’d hoped:

  • In the week before Christmas, the Federal Court ruled that it’s illegal to so much as link to copyright-infringing MP3s … while I can see the logic behind the judgement, it strikes me as yet more proof of how out of touch our copyright laws are with modern technology.
  • John Howard’s pronouncement from just before the new year, conflating feminism with the desire to get rich through working, and claiming that women in this country have “moved on” from it, hardly surprises me given the ideas he seems to foster about Australian society. Then again (as the lefty crew have widely noted) maybe it just complements Mr. Abbot’s stance on Centacare being part of the contract for a pregnancy advice line. The thing is, Howard is a champion of the game of appealing to his biggest block of supporters, and in that context he’s exactly right. If you’re a couple in a mortgage-belt suburb with two kids, you’re more likely to care about petrol prices and baby-bonus handouts than traditional equality issues like the distribution of household labour or the existence of boys’ clubs among corporate leaders. Together with the fact that feminism’s public image ain’t that great (the last point in this post was a joke, but the issue is real) and the fact that the most obvious battles (e.g. access to education) have been won, I can see what would make people agree with him.
  • This is gold, and reminds me oh so much of the rule of thumb that in Australia, “referendum” is a synonym for “no”.
  • It surprises me to learn how many factors prevent universities from being able to decide how many students they have (contrary to Brendan Nelson’s old goal of campuses with different specialties). Thus, for once I find myself agreeing with UWA’s vice-chancellor about university funding.
  • It shames me to admit that I’m a little sad to hear the news that The O.C. is to be cancelled. In my defence, I point out that Ben McKenzie does have a degree in international politics …!
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