Missing Link nameless edition

“With the Howard era over, we are about to engage a new family that we know little about, except that Theresa Rein is very rich and dresses like Count Duckula. In fact the entire family, with the exception of Ruddstar, likes to dress LOUD.” (lifted from the Daily Telegraph)

Apologies for the delay in churning out this mid-week edition of Missing Link. We’re short-handed due to the demands of the pre-Christmas rush and a QUT law school retreat. This edition compiled by James Farrell, Gilmae, Darlene Taylor, Rebecca Leighton and Ken Parish, with editing by the latter.

1. News and Politics Stuff

National

Bryan “Ozpolitics” Palmer gives us a useful summary of the state of play in undecided seats, then announces that he’s going on a prolonged post-election blog holiday.

Mark from stoushnet examines the way the Liberals are already mythologising the reasons for their own defeat, while Possum Comitatus posts an eudite analysis of the big picture actual reasons for the federal election result:

The government didn’t lose the election, their failed campaign strategy didn’t result in an ALP government by accident, the electorate didn’t say “it’s time to give the other side a go”.

However, nor was it a rejection of the Howard government either. The dislike of the Howard government didn’t drive the election result – far from it.

Nor was it a small target “me too” strategy, Possum argues. So what was it? Possum also takes the opportunity of demolishing Christopher Pearson’s credibility (erroneously assuming that he actually ever had any).

barista feels that the ministry appointments of Garrett and Conroy and Wong are basically good news for the film industry.

cam continues to play with constitutions – is there a word for this particular variety of geekiness, akin to psephology?

Mark is awaiting the emergence of the dolchstoss explanation for the Coalition defeat. At the risk of dragging the MSM into this, Piers Akerman’s Tuesday column in the Daily Telegraph should meet all of Mark’s needs – it was the Wets’ fault! :

dr. faustus blogs the talks given by Insiders regulars at the National Museum of Australia.

William “Pollbludger” Bowe ponders the necessity to reform the Liberal Party in the wake of its obliteration, and disgruntled ex-Liberal Andrew Elder doesn’t think much of Brendan Nelson’s appointees to review the party structure (and doesn’t think much of Nelson as leader either):

Ruddock, the professional wet blanket; Robb, the high-level machine operator who doesn’t understand why people join party branches; and Morrison, who ignored the last of the cries that if he didn’t act the NSW Liberals would end up where they are now.

Andrew Norton dismisses the notion that celebrity played any part in Maxine McKew winning Bennelong, and is also vastly sceptical that there will be a viable opposition party other than the Liberals.

Jeremy Sear explains what Brendan Nelson means when he says he accepts the verdict.

Given the spectacular failure of its in-house Howard apologists, Gummo Trotsky is not surprised to find that The Australian has outsourced the Eulogy to Mark Steyn. John Quiggin ventures his own ‘political obituary’ of John Howard’s thirty year career, concluding:

In the end, it was fitting both that Howard should attain great political success, and that his career should end in humiliating defeat. His ability deserved the one, and his misdeeds the other.

In the aftermath of the Nationals’ leadership change, Mark Bahnisch argues that the party is postponing its future.

Robert Merkel raises the question what kind of sanctions might work against greenhouse recalcitrants among the developing countries.

Ken Lovell offers two posts for the price of one, linked by the theme of symbolism. The first concerns Rudd’s signing of the Kyoto Protocol, whose main meaning is that Australia will rejoin the community of nations:

For the last six or seven years, Howard and his deluded cronies took us to a very dark and dangerous place: a cartoon world where the Project for a New American Century was bathed in the glow of righteousness and Teh Enemy was cackling and gibbering in the shadows; and Howard, totally out of his depth and longing for the certainties of the Menzies era, succumbed like the most innocent virgin to the flattery of the nonentity in the White House and his lunatic offsider.

The ‘second’ post disapproves of conscience-balming, tree-planting offsets for greenhouse vandalism.

State

Apathetic Gam is not happy about Premier Bligh’s token modifications to the Multiplex plan that will wreck Brisbane’s Mangroves and turn the city into a ‘poor man’s Sydney’.

The ongoing saga of the Queensland Liberal Party.

2. Life and Other Serious Stuff

Andrew Leigh and Andrew Norton are busily debating the merits of state-run public education in a series of open letters to each other released and cross-posted on their respective blogs.

Liam demands some socialism before acceding to proposals to recommunitise the Sydney CBD.

Peter Martin mocks the notion of Events dumping money of supernatural origins into local economies. Peter also argues that, although the “recession we had to have” might not have been keating’s finest hour politically, it nevertheless ushered in The Great Moderation.

Rob links to a debate held on the idea that God is an invention.

Harry Clarke is pessimistic, believing that any action by the Tasmanian government on Macquarie Island is too little, too late. Harry also turns his mind to Christmas shopping and suggests purchase of Readers’ Digest book about global warming! Sounds worthwhile too, but how do you buy it without getting on their mailing list and having your letter box swamped with crap for eternity afterwards?

Back on deck after a prolonged bout of exam marking, Legal Eagle ponders the relationship between unions and business in the light of the Coalition’s unsuccessful “union bosses are evil” campaign.

Joshua Gans revives an old favourite blogosphere topic: whether wives should take their husbands’ surnames. And what about the kids? Joshua and his wife almost adopted a creative solution.

In light of the blasphemy conviction of English primary school teacher in Sudan, Australian Atheist sums up the state of play in the long-running blogosphere debate about blasphemy and female genital mutilation. Links to just about every post on the topic from a wide range of bloggers. It would be great somehow to incorporate this saga in the Best Blog Posts 2007 compilation, if we could somehow select a “best” from what is really an ongoing connected conversation. It really highlights the fact that blogging is to a considerable extent a quite different genre from mainstream op-ed journalism (or just about any other traditional genre).

Paul from a roll of the dice draws attention to an especially bizarre/scarey aspect of US law:

[T]he U.S. view is that the covert abduction of foreign nationals in order to bring them to America to face justice is absolutely fine, and indeed appears to be some sort of historical birthright accorded to Americans.

It seems that extreme rendition was “extreme” only in that it involves state-authorised kidnapping of people in a foreign nation and taking them to another foreign nation (to be tortured secretly). Kidnapping foreigners in a foreign country to take them to the US to face trial has always been perfectly OK under US law and isn’t extreme at all!!!

Greater love hath no blogger than to volunteer to be Santa at a local pre-school, as Kev Gillett has just done.

3. The Yartz

Helen from Blogger on the Cast Iron Balcony went to hear the Big GG (Germaine Greer) speak at the Jane Austen and Comedy conference. Many female literary types (and Tim T from Will Type for Food) attended Greer’s talk, and it was apparently a BIG success:

She took us on a magical mystery tour around the Bildungsroman (with reference to The Getting of Wisdom and Mansfield Park), the eighteenth century, Colin Firth’s wet shirt (she’s over it); Why she doesn’t write fiction herself; Psychoanalysing Fanny Price in Mansfield Park; the invention of scottishness, Percy Shelley, and many other fascinating side trips, rather like the alleyways of Melbourne into which we spilled afterwards – you never know what you’ll find, but like Greer, you always return to the firm grid of Bourke/Elizabeth/Swanston which keeps us on topic.

Oddly, Pamela Bone went along to GG to pick a bone about Darfur and feminists and stuff, which the fetching Colin Firth was probably making a statement about when he jumped in the pond and got his white shirt all wet (not over it). Anyway, you might like to take a look at Amnesty International’s site to find out more about some of the campaigns trying to combat violence against women.

Kerryn Goldsworthy from Pavlov’s Cat has a wonderfully incisive and erudite post up about the Big GG lecture:

I was very struck by the precision and detail with which Greer had prepared her argument, for argument it was: a proper literary lecture, with a characteristically contrarian bent. Greer chose the least popular and most maligned of Austen’s novels, Mansfield Park, to make an argument about a particular genre, the Bildungsroman (or, as one of Elsewhere’s students recently called it, the Blundingsroman). In this kind of novel, a young person proceeds with a certain amount of incident through her or his adolescence and young adulthood, acquiring formal and informal education, and learning by trial and error – mostly error — how to be an adult and function properly in the world.

Darlene from Larvatus Prodeo (still in exile) examines the “ongoing vilification” of Nancy Spungen. Spungen has been dead for over thirty years but she continues to be slandered by punks and punk historians:

Butt’s volume came out two decades after Nancy’s death and fourteen years after Mrs. Spungen’s paperback was released, which makes one wonder if he’s being deliberately ignorant about what an horrendous condition schizophrenia is so he doesn’t upset the standard punk line about “Nauseating Nancy”.

Larrikin from Matilda discusses The Glugs of Gosh by C.J.Dennis:

Glugs is a complete departure from the subject-matter of these two books. It is written as a book for children, but is really a political satire. Margaret Herron, Dennis’s wife, wrote in her memoir, Down the Years, that the author considered this his best work. This is also confirmed in a letter written by Dennis in which he states that Glugs, and The Singing Garden – a collection of his nature poems from “The Herald” newspaper – were the work he considered most highly.

Wicking honours the life of the late cartoonist James Kemsley.1

Darlene reviews the literature on Nancy Spungen (Sid Vicious’s sheila) and is surprised by the degree of misogyny, from a lot of people who should know better.

4. T.S.S

(troppo sports stadium)

Niall Cook wraps up the latest V8 Supercar round.((It wasn’t just the latest, it was the last of the year and Holden won again despite failing at Bathurst ~ KP))

Tony deflates accusations that cricket is heading for another schism, but inexplicably fails to say anything about Murali the Chucker claiming the world record for bowling.

Shaun didn’t get to see a football match, but still did everything else that a night at the game would involve.

5. Mad, Bad, Sad and Glad

Legal Eagle hates transit lanes, and at some length too, while Joshua Gans hates snow, and John Surname focuses on the nine most racist Disney characters!!!

Bunnings has it all, Vest tells us.

Adrian the Cabbie is back blogging conventionally again, after a MSM stint of video “cab-blogging”, and posts one of his superb snapshots of life in the naked city, this time about a refugee passenger with an extraordinary story.

The German language version of Matrix 2 has hidden virtues, Gilmae finds, even if getting “shaped” down to dialup speeds after accidentally downloading it instead of the English version doesn’t.

Liam goes proudly Stalinist over Sydney’s urban renewal.

  1. Wasn’t he Skeeter the Paperboy, I ask, betraying my advancing age yet again? ~ KP []

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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gilmae
13 years ago

Isn’t it funny how when you are writing on your own blog, the one read by -3 people, you’re prepared to say anything. And then when you notice a blog with a wider audience linking to and highlighting your flagrant piracy, you choke just a little on your drink and look around nervously.

Darlene
13 years ago

Being cryptic is very clever and all, but if you’ve got something to say about someone being linked why don’t you just say it? Sorry, the comment is just meaningless without some context.

Good edition, and all the better because my post about Nancy is linked twice. Rock on, dude.

gilmae
13 years ago

Golly :- )

Darlene
13 years ago

Sorry, I am not one of the – 3 people who have read your blog, Gilmae.

And I am very, very literal and not that bright.

John Surname
13 years ago

thanks again for the link(!!!)

Tony T.
13 years ago

Tony deflates accusations that cricket is heading for another schism, but inexplicably fails to say anything about Murali the Chucker claiming the world record for bowling.

Well, “inexplicably fails” is not strictly true:

Kink Kontroversy.

Plus ca chuck, plus ca meme chuck.

Wicking
13 years ago

Ken, Kemsley was indeed Skeeter the Paperboy, appearing on Nine’s ‘Super Flying Fun Show’ in the early 70s. I used to watch him on telly as a kid, sadly something I never realised until after he died.

Ken Lovell
13 years ago

Ken Lovell offers two posts for the price of one …

Well sometimes I get inspired as I write … it’s a gift :-)

Australian Atheist
13 years ago

It would be great somehow to incorporate this saga in the Best Blog Posts 2007 compilation, if we could somehow select a best from what is really an ongoing connected conversation. It really highlights the fact that blogging is to a considerable extent a quite different genre from mainstream op-ed journalism (or just about any other traditional genre).

I think the difference, which you point out, between blogging and “mainstream op-ed journalism” will prevent the FGM saga from being adapted to the Best Blog Posts 2007 compilation. After all, the Best Blog Posts 2007 compilation is closer to traditional opinion piece writing than blogging.