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319 responses to “Overflow Thread”

  1. alfred venison

    we don’t need synthetic food to feed the world, we only need a coaltion of the willing to feed the world. -a.v.

  2. Helen

    Tim Macknay: “As I said before, calling it “anti-science” is just propaganda. Being opposed to a particular type of research programme is not inherently “anti-science”.”

    Or as Daniel Davies said about Steven Pinker, “Everyone’s happy about the moon landings and curing smallpox and all that, but it really is a bit unseemly to imply that if you object to Pinker and his mates constantly gobbing off about things they don’t want to bother learning about, you’re in favour of unanaesthetised dentistry.”

  3. Graham Bell

    Alfred Venison @1:
    I think it would be beneficial to have the ability to make synthetic foods and to use “new” foods (well, new to humans that is).

    However, there is already plenty of food in the world – maldistributed, inappropriately used, unnecessarily wasted and – worst of all – lost in storage and transport.

    What a pity it is that so much “Aid(?)” money is blown stroking egos and so little is expended wisely on providing cheap vermin-, thief- and weather-proof bulk foodstuff storage containers in villages and in urban communities.

  4. Casey

    Are you okay this fine day, evening, whatever it is over there?

    You want the dumb leftists to accept you know more about these things and you are right … without putting forth any argument at all about what you know and what you believe and what are you trying to say exactly?

    Granted, it was me wot said the magic spell about MLK and etc so I suppose I know how you got through the dimensions now, but still, is it too much to ask you actually type out the reasons why you disagree with I’m not sure which bit, who, maybe all of it before you call everyone stupid and ridiculous?

    Is that too much to ask of an American Master of the Universe?

  5. Casey

    .

  6. Mindy

    that it’s not utterly impossible that I understand more things about this stuff than you do?

    Not utterly impossible but unlikely I would think.

  7. j_p_z

    “unlikely I would think.”

    Zenger’s First Law, proven once again in a single phrase.

    You folks just crack me up. You really don’t understand the premise, do you.

    ***

    Casey — your objections and insults are interesting and worth a very serious conversation. Are you really interested in wading into this turf? I don’t mean it as a taunt, I have a great deal of respect for you, even though we disagree about a lot of things, that’s sort of why you’re such a formidable conversationist.

    Let me know if you want this thread to get entertainingly debatingly long. But if you want to just trade quips and barbs instead, that’s cool as well: I’ve always found you to be an excellent sparring partner.

  8. Casey

    Yes, I want you to tell me your view on these matters please JPZ. I don’t want to argue so much as I want you to explain your views and what it is that has irritated you about what was said.

    Here is a picture of a mural which has stood in Newtown (the closest we in Sydney will get to certain parts of New York I am told) since 1993 or something. It’s heritage listed now. You will note that the colours of red, black and yellow are actually making up the Aboriginal flag – a pan Aboriginal construct developed for the purposes of furthering Aboriginal rights here in Australia back in the day. Also there is this quote on that mural – Genesis 37:19: “Behold the dreamer cometh; Come now therefore and let us slay him, and we shall see what will become of his dreams” as well as a picture of the earth as seen from a photo from the Apollo 8 mission.

    http://pinterest.com/pin/275001120966863321/

  9. Mindy

    jpz I don’t think you have ever adequately explained how you can know so much about the experience of being a woman, now or then, so go for your life I’d love to know why you think it is that you can shit all over our lived experiences?

  10. faustusnotes

    j_p_z at 8 is possible the most passive-aggressive comment on the internet. Pretty good given his previous comment was the dumbest on the internet.

  11. Mindy

    Also google comes up blank on Zengers first law so maybe you need to explain where you got that from as well? Or did you just make it up?

  12. Helen

    j_p_z, the scales have fallen from my eyes. You really are a scholar and thinker of the first water. I have realised, shockingly, how I have underestimated you all these years and from now on I will take everything you say as gospel, including scolding us for our inferiority.

    ….

    …Nah, just kidding! 😛

  13. Katz

    Japerz, with his trademark flounce with pout.

    Degree of difficulty, 3.6.

    … Nailed it!

  14. Su

    He always begins with the flounce too, which is very premature, but fortuitous in that he never actually has to stump up the evidence for his intellectual superiority. Referring to yourself in third person is a very bad sign, unfortunately for us we have very recent experience of that kind of all promise, no delivery, puffed up narcissist, so if you ain’t one, then finally, at last, state your argument Zenger.

  15. j_p_z

    Well, Helen’s insult at #13 was at least mildly amusing, though not what I’d call genuinely witty or even properly “funny”. But props to you for at least trying, lucky amateur. I miss Liam, Nabs, Fyodor, and Dr. Cat.

    If this is going to be the “pile on japerz” thread, then up to now it’s been a pretty pathetic showing. Hang that flag at half-mast, dim-witted skips. Everybody so far(excluding Casey) has been a dullard and a bore. Sorry, pippuls, but you don’t interest me, and also, you don’t even seem to know how to get under my skin. It’s very sad when you haven’t studied your opponent well enough that you don’t even know how to irritate him correctly. No wonder we yanks own your whole country, and not the other way round.

    Technically speaking of course that isn’t even remotely true, but admit it: for a second there, I really got under your skin, didn’t I.

    And that’s the difference between you and me, innit.

    @ Casey, I think we could have a rather interesting extended conversation about all this stuff here, but I won’t continue if the blog mods keep me on auto-mod as they have been doing; it’s simply not a dignified way to converse. That is of course completely. up to their own discretion, and rightly so: it’s their place so I’m cool with whatever decisions they choose, and I respect all that. But if they choose to keep me on auto-mod, then I can’t have an organic lengthy discussion with you, and so, on to more entertaining things and I’ll have to bail, what the hey.

  16. Rocky

    Jpz, I wasn’t part of the MLK conversation at all. Try reading.

  17. Helen

    Well, I’m crushed.

    CRUSHED.

    *Cries*

  18. alfred venison

    speaking of freeze peach, how do they get strawberries into my ice cream but when i add fresh ones from the fruit salad they turn to rock? -a.v.

  19. j_p_z

    @ Cat Herding:

    Whatever you folks think is right is perfectly OK with me. Really, since LP has come back into being, the new version is far more centered on Australia-specific topics, which is perfectly fine but it means I shouldn’t really comment much, since I have a rather superficial grasp of Australian culture. .

    The earlier version of LP was somehow more free-wheeling and international, so I felt my comments made more sense in that context, whereas nowadays maybe not so much.

    I continue to be interested in Australian affairs and in the Australian people, whom I admire greatly, but I have no place commenting in detail about situations that I know very little about. (As you’ve noticed I’m sure, it’s the reason why I get so irritated that every non-American in the world thinks they are an automatic expert on a country which they mostly know only from the movies.)

    Anyway I’ll probably lurk here indefinitely and occasionally comment just to be a f#ck#ng nuisance; but you folks have created something interesting and remarkable here, and I hope it prospers whether I’m around or not.

    @ Katz: Nice shot, bud

  20. Katz

    Speaking of peaches…

    Bill Peach, ringmaster of the smartest attack dogs the media ever assembled, dead.

    Always respected.

  21. Casey

    Japerz, in response to your provocative interpretive dance on the other thread, you got a whole lot of love goin’ on over here. I don’t know why you are all upset about the attention when you are the one who siren-called it sitting on that big sea rock on the Lazy Sunday thread.

    Now, having got yourself a curious little peanut gallery formed, feel free to lay out your argument and tell us the things you think we don’t know. Who cares if you are moderated? It just means you will come up a little later than immediately. So what? You might like to know that all my responses to you in this discussion were moderated for some reason too. I don’t know why but I was made to wait also. They get emails, don’t worry.

    Now proceed:

  22. Casey

    And who saw this (zombie stoush alert)

    http://www.abc.net.au/austory/

    quotes from Tony Windsor

    On Gillard:

    “I have never seen male, female or dog treated in the fashion she was treated. I think it was disgraceful”

    On Rudd’s time as PM the first time:

    “Leadership is one thing; dictatorship is another”.

    This man I trust. I’m glad that his assessment meets up with mine.

  23. Helen

    It’s a shame he’s going, Casey. We’ll miss him.

  24. Casey

    Goodness me, I’m still trying to work out what it was wot flipped him

    Lemme see, sangria, hot day, MLK, Trayvon Martin, Helen Razer, symbolism versus flippety flop, having a baby at 21, summer of love, hippies, punks.

    You know, the only thing that I can see upset him was the fact they put pineapple in with the salmon and spinach. In which case, I assure you Japers it was just great even if it broke some rules.

    Just so you know, I’m starting Grapes of Wrath because of something Pav said on her facebook page. When I finish reading it Japerz, I fully expect you to come fulminating at me without telling me what the frack caused the fulmination.

    Okay then, bye.

  25. mindy

    I wonder how many people would move there if Tony Windsor created ‘Windsordom’ and seceded from Australia?

  26. FDB

    japerz, dude.

    Dude.

    You have to stop with this shit. It must be four or five times now that you’ve flown off the handle about ferriners having opinions about US culture/politics/history. I’d swear this last was just a lightly edited cut-and-paste from the previous.

    A corollary of Zenger’s Law must take the form:

    “No foreigner, no matter how well read or educated, may comment about the US of A, because they can’t possibly know as much as some halfwit dirt farmer from Albakirky.”

    And on none of those occasions, as best my memory can recall, did you specify the content of your objection.

    Think about it japez – we have all seen the same coverage as you of the Trayvon Martin case. We have heard all MLK’s speeches – seen all the biopics. The reason you don’t feel qualified to comment on Jill Meagher or the Palm Island riots is because you don’t know a fucking thing about the events.

  27. Su

    Don Watson, put it so well,”Good enough to be the measure of what’s missing in politics. ”

    Probably been linked before, but oncemore won’t matter http://www.themonthly.com.au/issue/2013/august/1375315200/don-watson/praise-tony-windsor

  28. David Irving (no relation)

    Excellent article, Su. Thanks.

  29. GregM

    I wonder how many people would move there if Tony Windsor created ‘Windsordom’ and seceded from Australia?

    In the same vein I have often wondered if Bob Katter established “Katterdom” in FNQ and seceded from Australia how many people would move there.

  30. FDB

    Diplomatic relations between the two might be… strained Greg?

  31. Graham Bell

    Hey, j-p-z. Do you mind if I join in the pile-on too. It looks like good fun. It will put me in the right frame of mind to enjoy tonight’s repeat episode of “The Vikings” (an Irish-Canadian coproduction; it’s a training series on ill-manners and axemanship axepersonship). 🙂

    Of course we are experts on the United States. Nearly all of our films and TV shows come from Hollywood and that’s in the US, isn’t it? (L-O-L)

  32. j_p_z

    FDB as usual is a calm voice of reason, and it’s certainly fair in this medium to have a few chuckles, or maybe even more than a few, at my expense. The whole thing is of course more subtle and complex than that, but I’d be an utter churl if I didn’t admit, sure, mebbe I look a little silly at this distance and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t giggle. That’s not the whole story by any means, but yes, sure, giggling is entirely appropriate as a partial measure.

    If the zombie apocalypse ended the World As We Know It tomorrow, and the survivors had to form an ad-hoc government to start re-building human society from scratch, there are a number of regulars here, lefty or not, who would get my vote to be part of the junta, and FDB is certainly one of them. Casey, too.

    Part of the problem of what I was fuming about earlier is that a lot of it is nuts and bolts and nitty-gritty you-have-to-be-there stuff; it may not be possible to hash it out trans-Pacifically on a blog forum, in a way that will seem reasonable in pixels. Some of FDB’s argumentation, while seeming sensible at arm’s length, wouldn’t withstand scrutiny at a more intimate distance, that’s just the way that human judgment shifts with respect to scale. There’s an old saying, “Never trust a man who’s never been punched in the face,” which is sensible — but you wouldn’t scale it up to “Never trust a man who’s never been shot in the head,” nor would you scale it down to “Never trust a man who’s never stubbed his toe.”

    But if we need a global junta some time in the future, FDB, Liam, Kim and Fyodor would be good starting candidates. Katz and I will arm-wrestle about the further particulars, and I promise not to be offended if most people think I’m just a little too sniffy to be trusted as your dictator.

    Does that sound reasonable?

  33. alfred venison

    i am hopeful that you, Graeme Bell, will at least make some sense. people here may slam your views but at least they know what you’re saying. -a.v.

  34. GregM

    i am hopeful that you, Graeme Bell, will at least make some sense.

    Bravo alfred. That is being very hopeful indeed.

  35. alfred venison

    not really, its a low base. i think Graeme Bell making more sense than jpz is a lay down misere. he will probably get slammed for his trouble but no one will need to ask him what he’s up about. -a.v.

  36. FDB

    I beg to differ Alfie.

    When jpz troubles to actually lay down some content, it’s usually quite clear. The lashings-out at anyone presuming to comment on US domestic affairs are an aberration. And in violation of another of his apparent Laws, they are Not Funny.

  37. Helen

    Casey, I meant Tony Windsor, not Japerz. Although pineapple in a spinach salad is an abomination no matter what your political orientation.

  38. alfred venison

    what can i say but let’s see. -a.v.

  39. Casey

    JPZ has been around for ages and is one of the old faves of the blog. He is well worth reading, even if he likes to remind you he is a master of the universe on the odd occasion. So what. I like to tell people I do magicks. Let’s all live a little and relax.

  40. alfred venison

    well, i hope i didn’t upset anyone, but my experience yesterday was of more heat than light. or subject line. where GB presently has the advantage. -a.v.

  41. PavCat

    Just so you know, I’m starting Grapes of Wrath because of something Pav said on her facebook page.

    Oh dear, drunk on power again.

  42. Graham Bell

    j-p-z
    Please return. We need to hear from someone on the ground in the US to balance out whatever Hollywood and Murdoch command us to believe. And come on, admit it, wouldn’t you have been tempted to vote for Jesse Jackson if he had made it onto the Presidential ticket? 🙂

    a.v.
    Thank you – though sometimes I do take a point-of-view just a little beyond my usual one to elicit considered comment.

    Helen @ 39
    Pineapple in a spinach salad sounds delicious.

  43. dylwah

    Why is it that I always miss out on jpz telling us we don’t understand Okefenokee Swamp. Sighs.

  44. mindy

    @Helen I have to say I’m a little upset that I am on this side of the pineapple chasm gazing wistfully at you on the other side. Not that Graham isn’t nice and all but still.

  45. Casey

    First of all it wasn’t a salad, it wasn’t even spinach though it looked like spinach to me never mind. It was:

    “Chargrilled Jerk (I have no idea about this some else should explain) Salmon with Chinese broccoli and pineapple salsa”

    At The Balmain, in Balmain. I’m telling you it was nice. Although I was drinking sangria so I suppose a bit of cardboard on a plate would be very nice after the third one of those. You’ll just have to go and check it out yourselves, you bunch of cynics.

  46. FDB

    “Chargrilled jerk” is almost a tautology. I’ve never heard of jerk anything that was cooked any other way.

    Anyhoo, “jerk” refers to the spice rub (can be dry or wet) which the thing getting jerked marinates in before hitting the grill. Like most things, every Jamaican family would have their own recipe, and you’d vary it for the type of meat, but they’d all have allspice and hot chillies.

  47. Casey

    If the zombie apocalypse ended the World As We Know It tomorrow, and the survivors had to form an ad-hoc government to start re-building human society from scratch, there are a number of regulars here, lefty or not, who would get my vote to be part of the junta, and FDB is certainly one of them. Casey, too.

    Quite frankly, I’m not going in the Junta without Helen. It’s Helen and me or nothing. You will just have to come to terms with Helen.

    Or you can shoot me at dawn, doesn’t bother me, I’m dead anyway.

    Right. NowI’m going to finish watching “Inside Job”. I have to take breaks watching that because all I want to do when I watch it, is go to Grand Central and do this.

  48. mindy

    Oh great, now I get to watch Casey and Helen across the chasm in their lovely new junta and all I get is pineapple. Well fine. Be like that.

  49. Val

    I haven’t even been in the thread and I already feel left out. It’s US imperialist divide and conquer, people – don’t fall for it!

  50. mindy

    Do you like pineapple Val, we could be happy if you like pineapple.

  51. Val

    I’m going to be nice to Graham in future – I think – though an outspoken opinionated feminist trying to be nice to men is a terrible contortion.
    Omg I’m caught in the sticky web of the patriarchy – help help

  52. Val

    I’m not sure where the pineapple stands ideologically – but I do like it. When I was a child I asked for pineapple and ham on my birthday – now I’m a vegetarian it’s just the pineapple.
    Had the most delicious pineapple once when camping at Cardwell – not sure if Cardwell is still there – has it been swept away by cyclones and the forces of evil in Qld?

  53. FDB

    Zombie Apocalypse Group Hug?

  54. Paul Norton

    Val @54:

    Had the most delicious pineapple once when camping at Cardwell – not sure if Cardwell is still there – has it been swept away by cyclones and the forces of evil in Qld?

    Something like that, according to recent reports. The infamous Port Hinchinbrook resort, that should never have been approved, is reportedly in a state of physical and financial decrepitude and may be about to close.

  55. Val

    Thanks Paul. I’ve tried to keep up but only get bits and pieces of news about Qld here in Vic

  56. Ootz

    [email protected] From privileged viewpoints it is more often described as a Poststructuralist Existential Social Construction.

  57. Val

    Actually I remembered last night – terrible sleeping patterns due to jet lag – that it was actually steak and grilled pineapple that I thought so special as a child.
    Sounds weird, even if I weren’t vegetarian, but I think in those long ago days it was a dish.

  58. Casey

    Val you said: I’m not sure where the pineapple stands astrologically

    Good question. As you know I am currently consulting the stars which are about as good an indicator of the polls apparently. I looked up the charts and can confidently predict that the sign of the Pineapple will be transiting Queensland where it will be at its most visible on 7 September after which it will fade to obscurity and never be seen again. With some luck.

    Apparently next year, astrologically speaking is Julia Gillard’s year, she will be blowing everyone’s mind.

    Also the astrologers are picking Malcolm Turnbull for PM this time next year because apparently we will be moving to a republic then. It can’t be Kevin because he’s apparently turned into John Howard, what with his move to limit foreign ownership because it makes him “uncomfortable” and god knows we have to be comfortable. It can’t be Tony because he likes to carry the Queen’s handbag, so it has to be Malcolm they say.

    Righto anything else you need let me know.

  59. Casey

    No, incorrecto. Not uncomfortable, it makes him “anxious” which astrologically speaking really gives me the shits cause it buys into more race dog whittling. Off you go then Kev, keep on whittling away, as much as you can. Perhaps your next policy might be an invisible force field over Australia with special laser beams to incinerate everyone who makes you anxious.

  60. Val

    Is the pineapple the sign of the Kevin? I somehow knew it wasn’t entirely trustworthy.

  61. Val

    I was going to ask what is race dog whittling and then I just worked it out, ha ha. I hope the stars are right in these predictions.

  62. GregM

    Is the pineapple the sign of the Kevin? I somehow knew it wasn’t entirely trustworthy.

    I thought it was the gourd. Or the sandal.

  63. Val

    I’m a pineapple and I’m from Queensland.

  64. Katz

    A well-sucked sauce bottle.

  65. Val

    Is the gourd because it’s an empty vessel? But why the sandal?

  66. mindy

    Val, although I am not Casey, I predict a viewing of ‘The Life of Brian’ in your future if you want to get that allusion.

  67. Val

    Oh yes I’ve never watched the whole of that – not because I’ve got anything against it, it’s just never happened. Must do so, obviously.

    So well – I have been in moral danger because I hate Kevin so much that I almost felt I didn’t care if Abbott won. But now I see the solution – a hung parliament and Kevin loses his seat. Can you and Casey use your powers to bring this about?

  68. mindy
  69. mindy

    Umm, over to you Casey 🙂

  70. Helen

    When I think of Pineapple I think of Bjelke-Petersen. Maybe that’s why I can’t hack it.

  71. Val

    I thought since you Mindy had moved into the prediction business you might also be able to help. I’m not underestimating Casey’s powers but it’s a big request.

  72. Casey

    Thank you for that riveting contribution to this vitally important conversation about the art of divining the election, Helen. Now tell me why I want you in the junta precisely?

  73. Casey

    I’m sorry japez but there is no way I am going in your junta without helen Mindy.

  74. mindy

    Val I’m a wishin’ and a hopin’ for a slim Labor victory with Rudd sadly losing his seat in a tight contest. That would be karmic justice for mine. But I would settle for a slim Labor victory with Rudd holding on. I’d just stock up on popcorn and wait. I hope, that with Casey’s awesome powers, that this will be enough.

    Otherwise we are all on the rollercoaster and practicing our ‘Don’t blame me I didn’t vote for the bastards’ along with everyone else until we are all wondering how they got in since no-one will admit to voting for them.

  75. Val

    Yeah well I shouldn’t be vengeful and go on with the hate talk about KR because it’s uncomfortably close to the way some on here and elsewhere have talked about JG – however even if they do win and he doesn’t lose his seat, I soberly don’t think he is the best person to be PM. Anyway such serious stuff is really better on the election thread I guess.

  76. mindy

    Yes and no. The Rudd and Gillard stuff has turned into a zombie stoush so the Overflow thread is probably the best place for it. The Weekly Election Thread is more for stuff happening this week and you don’t want to piss TigTog off today, it’s her birthday 🙂

  77. Graf Fyodor von Bazarov und zu Lolzberg

    Your fealty is accepted, Japezter.

    Please have the irate queen scented and sent to my tent.

  78. Rocky

    Remember when Gillard talked about restrictions about 457 visas? And people wrote angrily here about her dreadful racism. And how such a thing would never happen under under Rudd’s watch. It was the ‘Gillardists’ in Cabinet wot done it. Does the same claim of racism apply to dear Kev, now he’s ‘anxious’ about foreign ownership? Curious minds would like to know.

  79. faustusnotes

    happy birthday TigTog.

    I have been thinking for a while now that Gillard could have done better than Rudd. He certainly isn’t campaigning well and is showing many signs of Rudd 1.0 – especially the whole policy on the run business. I actually wonder if he doesn’t care so very much about winning the election, he just wanted the vindication of getting his old job back from Gillard.

    Sad days indeed.

  80. Casey

    Yes happy birthday Tigs.

    Oh dear, here I was trying to do a spell for a narrow Labor victory and I conjured Fyodor instead. This means you got me the wrong speedos, FN, and that they don’t actually belong to Tony Abbott as I specified. I don’t want to know to whom they belong, I’m not interested in your predilection for those machines which spit out underpants in Japan, but I can’t very well do my “Vanquish the Leader of the Opposition” spell if you get me the wrong gear. Try again and no misleading next time. You never know what could come back through the dimensions.

  81. faustusnotes

    sorry Casey, what can I say – I was pressed for time! And those vending machines basically don’t exist, so I had to steal them from a drunk guy on the train. Just to make sure it was fair turnaround, I waited until a guy got into the women’s carriage in flagrant violation of social norms, and then asked the ladies therein to hand me the undies. I thought that would do the trick? As a stern atheist you have to forgive me for not understanding your strange and ethereal foreign ways.

  82. Casey

    They don’t exist eh? Imagine all the dumb tourists currently scouring Japan for these mythical underpants vending machines. The Japanese much think Westerners are idiots.

    I wonder what life will be like post-Rudd? When Labor supporters will have nothing to be pissed off with each other with?

    Worse, I wonder what life will be like with Abbott as PM? I mean visualise it. Visualise the idiot on the world stage. Visualise all the pashing of women he will do for the camera. Imagine it.

    Right enough of that: FN get me those speedos if you know what’s good for you.

  83. faustusnotes

    To the best of my understanding they don’t exist, Casey, it’s a western myth. I did once stumble on a dubious stall next to Shinjuku station that appeared to be selling girls’ underwear in sealed packages with a picture of the girl, but at that time I couldn’t read well enough to determine the details. Someone in a rural town dragged me into a p0rn shop once to show me such a vending machine (his wife found it while perusing the b**tiality section) but he turned out to have completely misunderstood: it was just selling novelty undies, unused. So my conclusion after 6 years here is that a) those machines are a myth and b) never believe anything a westerner tells you about Japan until you have confirmed it for yourself.

    I will contract a ninja forthwith to obtain the speedos, by hook or by crook.

  84. Val

    also best wishes to tigtog

  85. alfred venison

    the graphic on latest lnp advert on t.v. says they will: “save $1.5 billion by reducing refugee intake”. how do like that against what rudd said about a land register? -a.v.

  86. alfred venison

    and, p.s., happy birthday tigtog. another year gone, another year closer, but what the heck, never mind, its like a free one way holiday on earth at a good location. sincerely, best wishes, alfred v. (in existentialist mode).

  87. alfred venison

    you (at the election thread) are aware that some french feminists – sylvie tissot, elsa dorlin, christine delphy, houria bouteldja – support that country’s ban on the burqa? i think its simplistic to slam Jacques for his view & to claim that to support women wearing the burqa is feminist solidarity. or its not just Jacques who doesn’t listen. -a.v.

  88. GregM

    Hello Alfred. I am shifting a comment I posted on the election thread over to here on the Overflow Thread as this is the more appropriate thread for it.

    JdM how you see that item of clothing is not the problem of the women who wear it. It is yours. If you choose not to listen to the women themselves on the myriad reasons why they might choose to wear it then so be it, but don’t expect to be taken seriously.

    [redacted]

  89. Jacques de Molay

    Thanks a.v. The reality is I’ve been in the firing line for some time and given Mindy’s unfortunate replys think this might have a bit more to do with me being critical of the policies of the now ex-Dear Leader when LP first came back.

    It’s actually becoming pretty tiresome bothering with LP anymore, I’m sick of it.

  90. Mindy

    Oh FFS. Like I said don’t come to a left wing blog and whinge about the left wing ideas. I don’t even remember what you said about Gillard. I am pointing out the crapness of your views on the burqa. If you and a.v. want to have a little ‘the womenz hate us moment’ please do it elsewhere.

  91. GregM

    Well this is wonderful.

    I post a comment in defence of left-wing views, the right of the individual to wear what they please, [having a go at another commenter ~ Mod] and it is redacted.

    Why am I not surprised?

  92. Jacques de Molay

    Mindy, Don’t tell me to not come on a left-wing blog when a) I’m a lefty and b) have been here for a good 8 years and have probably been here longer than you (certainly don’t remember you being here when I first started out).

    Nah of course you don’t that’s why you bit my head off at the time and along with Liz have been spoiling for a stoush ever since. [personal abuse redacted ~ Mod]

  93. mindy

    I was here. I was here when this was still a blog about Brisbane. Try again.

    I don’t remember what you said about Gillard but I’m guessing it was crap too and of course I called you out on it then. But I am afraid that I don’t go around thinking about what you said months ago. Sorry but there it is.

  94. mindy

    So Liz and I are spoiling for a stoush? Not pointing out hypocrisy where Gillard was lambasted and Rudd gets a free shot? This used to be a political blog, not an apology for Rudd’s frankly appalling performance. Remember how he was going to save the election? Not so much now eh?

  95. Jacques de Molay

    Please refrain from calling my opinions crap, thanks very much.

  96. mindy

    I can call your opinions anything I damn well like. I am not callling you crap which would be against the comments policy.

  97. Jacques de Molay

    Mindy @ 96,

    And there we have it. I always suspected you got a comment from someone else confused with something I said. I never once advocated for Rudd to come back and explicitly made a post on here before it happened saying it would be a bad idea.

  98. GregM

    Hello tig-tog. I hope you had a happy birthday.

  99. mindy

    See told you I don’t spend time thinking about your comments from months ago. Which means, as I said earlier, it was your crap comments about the burqa that I object to now.

  100. Jacques de Molay

    Charming, now go back and check the archives and get back to me with that apology.

  101. GregM

    Which means, as I said earlier, it was your crap comments about the burqa that I object to now.

    Mindy, please moderate your language. Otherwise your comment will be redacted as having a go at another commenter.

  102. Casey

    now go back and check the archives and get back to me with that apology.

    go
    check
    get back to me

    Do you think Mindy is a maidservant, Jacques? Why does she have to apologise?

    What a revealing little comment.

  103. Val

    J de L this looks like a set up. Mindy told you she didn’t remember what you said, and then you set this conversation up with vague allusions about her and Liz “spoiling for a stoush” apparently so you could pull this out.
    I haven’t read all the background to this but I can see some things logically. For example the fact that you did not support Rudd coming back does not necessarily mean your criticisms of Gillard were fair. Nor does it necessarily mean that you would not condone behaviour by Rudd that you condemn in Gillard. I don’t know if you do or did those things, but saying you did not support him coming back, in itself, doesn’t prove you didn’t do them.
    If you think Mindy confused you with someone else over some remark, why not get the details and make the case?

  104. Val

    J de L @ 101
    Casey @ 102 made the point while I was still composing, but just to add – as well as not ordering people about, the logic is, J de L: you’re the one making the case, you produce the evidence.

  105. mindy

    Nice one GregM I see what you did there.

    I am not attacking anyone, merely their opinions. But if we keep discussing moderation policy we might be in trouble 😉

    Apology, whatever for Jacques? I said I objected to tonight’s opinions on the burqua and I still do.

    But thanks I have been working on my charm.

  106. Taylor

    For heaven’s sake what was the opinion on the burqua?

  107. Casey

    Taylor, the convo began with my comment here

    http://larvatusprodeo.net/archives/2013/08/weekly-election-2013-thread-7/#comment-434037

    and read down.

  108. Taylor

    Thanks, will revert when done reading.

  109. GregM

    I haven’t read all the background to this but I can see some things logically.

    Val, the problem with your appeal to logic is that you then proceed to a series of propositions based upon premises upon which you have no idea whether they are true or false.

    Simply put you have no idea what Jacques said in the Rudd/Gillard debates. As you said yourself:

    I don’t know if you do or did those things, but saying you did not support him coming back, in itself, doesn’t prove you didn’t do them.

    That statement, of course, invokes the logical fallacy of requiring your interlocutor to prove a negative.

    So:
    Logical error No. 1: False premise leading to false conclusion. You have no evidence of the premises upon which you rely and yet you consider that the argument should proceed upon the basis that they are true.

    Logical Error No. 2: Requiring proof of a negative. A complete no-no in logic.

    I point these things out not to have a go at you but to demonstrate the difficulty with your argument.

  110. Jacques de Molay

    Casey, please read the the rest of tonights posts in this thread. Given the attitude I’ve been receiving I think I’ve conducted myself very well.

    Val, the set up was Mindy remembering the exact topic (otherwise what has Kevin Rudd got to do with burqas) whilst pretending she didn’t. I don’t need to provide a damn thing thanks very much, it’s in the archives. I found Liz’s comment that I needed to re-educate myself on what feminism is offensive (which Mindy chose to riff off of) and considered what I felt was obvious goading by Mindy tonight implying I’m not a lefty and some sort of blow in who’s been here five minutes for the sake of some sort of point scoring pretty childish.

    Mindy, the charm needs some work but perhaps in future you could treat regulars with a bit more respect, just because you think burqas are fantastic and I don’t doesn’t make you superior to me and not assigning comments of other posters to me in future would be appreciated.

  111. mindy

    Jacques I have done none of that. If you want to ascribe that to me I can’t stop you nor do I care to. All I did was object to your comment on burqas. Everything else has been your extrapolation. You bought up length of time hanging around LP not me and tried to suggest that I was the blow in. I never claimed to be superior only opposed to your view.

    I wasn’t pretending anything. But whatever.

  112. Taylor

    I’m with Jacques. I can’t believe there is anything to be said in favour of the burqua. Watching some aggressive little paterfamilias strutting around with his anonymous wife kept two steps behind is just awful. That is the predominant use of the burqua and putting some idiosyncratc Australian progressive gloss on it is just implausible.

  113. mindy

    I suggest that you do some reading up on Muslim feminists then Taylor and see what they have to say about the topic.

  114. Casey
  115. Val

    J de L @ 111
    Sorry Jacques have to call BS on this. For some reason I can’t cut and paste on this site but:
    Mindy did not remember the exact topic, you specified it when you suggested @ 91 that she had it in for you because you’d been critical of the “ex- Dear Leader” ( your words).
    There may be a legitimate argument between you and Mindy about who is and isn’t left wing (if it’s worth having) but she didn’t say you were a blow in who’d been here five minutes (that’s me ha ha). You actually claimed @ 94 that you’d been here longer then her, which seems to be clearly wrong, maybe you should admit it?
    Also the suggestion that Mindy is lying about not remembering what you said is offensive and reminiscent of the remarks about Julia Gillard being deceitful which were made by some on LP as well as in the MSM
    (And yeah I’m still angry about the stuff that was said about Gillard like that, because as I’ve said before, I know her, I worked with her for two years, and that stuff is sexist BS)
    So yeah calling BS

  116. GregM

    Nice one GregM I see what you did there.

    I am not attacking anyone, merely their opinions. But if we keep discussing moderation policy we might be in trouble 😉

    Thank you most kindly Mindy.

    I’m afraid that it’s too late for me. I get into trouble for adhering to the comments policy.

  117. GregM

    You actually claimed @ 94 that you’d been here longer then her, which seems to be clearly wrong, maybe you should admit it?

    Val, just on that point I’ve been a commenter in this site since 2005. Jacques has been commenting for at least nearly that long. Mindy more recently. For what it’s worth.

  118. Val

    I think this is a great blog and sometimes I think I’m getting addicted to it. But I think one of the reasons that arguments like this get pretty quickly heated is that there was sexism against Gillard on this blog, and it has never been properly addressed and dealt with. Nice people like Brian try to defuse the anger, but no one deals with the cause.
    I know I’m a newbie, but that’s my take. And judging from what some of the women who’ve been here longer say, they remember a time when it wasn’t like that.
    So my plea is, at some point it has to dealt with. And not by making some woman do all the work, as it was previously suggested Liz do. There’s got to be a better way, surely? Just calling this a zombie stoush and trying to bury it isn’t going to solve it.

  119. Jacques de Molay

    Val, this was between Mindy and I go and find someone else to dance with. I should’ve stuck with my original decision earlier to ignore her.

  120. Liz

    Jesus Christ. Everything gor all complicated. I’ve been out and I’m way too drunk too repond to any of This. Talk later.

  121. mindy

    Thanks Val. A quick wander through the archives and I found a comment from me on April 28 2005. So I think that illustrates my credentials as having been here for years 🙂

  122. Val

    J de L @ 118
    That’s just rude.

  123. Casey

    Jacques, Val is now pointing to a bigger issue.

  124. Casey

    And frankly, she’s entitled to an opinion. You might want to consider your behaviour here tonight telling women what to do etc. It’s rather disconcerting. All this carry on because someone disagreed with your burqa statements. Really.

  125. Jacques de Molay

    It’s been going on ever since LP came back, Casey.

  126. Jacques de Molay

    No, Casey it’s quite a bit more than that and if people want to be rude to me I’ll be rude back, am I allowed to call others opinions crap even when they say they don’t like it or is it all one way here now? This is really becoming tiring.

  127. Casey

    No I didn’t say that but I don’t think telling people to stay out of blog conversations is the way to go either.

  128. GregM

    No I didn’t say that but I don’t think telling people to stay out of blog conversations is the way to go either

    Well you don’t have to worry about that Casey.

    You have someone who does that for you.

  129. Taylor

    Casey thanks for the link.

    Leila Ahmed is obviously an accomplished academic but I think she should have stuck with her original intuition that the resurgence of the veil is a backward step, linked to expanding Saudi influence.

    I think women in Australia or the UK or France are playing a dangerous game if they adopt the veil as a statement. Less so in Australia. In the UK or France it is only a flight of a few hours to societies dominated by fundamentalist theocrats, and their influence can be much stronger.

    If I understand correctly Ahmed is also arguing that Islamism (the concept that Islam is an appropriate basis for political society) has a natural affinity with progressive social ideals. That is truly alarming.

    I hope she reconsiders in her next book.

  130. FDB

    Where would a feminist argument for the burqa be without an appeal to tradition, or to getting by within the present realities of Muslim patriarchy?

    If like me you can find no answer but “nowhere”, then how progressive can such an argument be?

  131. Casey

    No one is actually arguing for or against the burqa. I just said the argument was complex, there were other things to consider like the idea of the veil as a shifting thing which can be used transgressively by women at times. Here is Shakira Hussein whose done a fair bit of writing in this area.

    http://www.abc.net.au/religion/articles/2011/01/10/3109706.htm

    Ultimately though, I do not believe in telling people what to wear. It’s none of my business. My concern is also for women who have had the experience of having the veil ripped from their faces because these sorts of feelings in non Muslims give rise to some people thinking they have the right to do that. I didn’t really want to go through this argument again, I just wanted to point out that Tony Abbott was not above marginalising a certain group of women in order to win votes, which was the point of putting that article on the election thread.

    I think if you type burqa in the search box up there, all the posts about the issue will come up.

  132. Linda

    Abbott’s comments were violence-enabling. When hijab women have their securely fastened veils suddenly yanked from behind, it is an act of violence. It was despicable of Abbott to make statements giving permission for people to react to the sight of a woman wearing a burqa.

  133. alfred venison

    so, if a feminist is critical of the burqa is she still a feminist or does disagreeing with you disqualify her?

    and, if a muslim feminist is critical of the burqa is she still a muslim feminist, is she disqualified, or do you only cite muslim feminists who agree with you? -a.v.

  134. Helen

    JdeM, Taylor, av, FDB, for the hundredth time:

    Opposing *criminalisation* of a thing does not indicate *support* for a thing, or that we “think it’s fantastic”(!)

    I have tried and tried to explain this simple position on LP now for over a year and have not been able to put it across.

    Honestly, can this simply be a failure of comprehension, given the level of education (mostly) on LP? I can only put it down to simple bad faith and a gleeful motivation to “gotcha the feminists”.

    If I can’t make you understand it any other way, how about an analogy. That might work. Take drug criminalisation. Do some drugs have damaging effects? Yes. Has the criminalisation of users and smalltime dealers had any effect on the existence of drug use in society? No. Have peoples lives been ruined by being sucked into the criminal justice system due to drug use? yes. Does this apply more to poor and *marginalised* groups? Yes. (A very high proportion of women in prison are there due to drug convictions.)

    Constructing a legal pipeline to draw Muslim women into the criminal justice system with the concomitant effect on their children and themselves is not helping them, or supporting them.

  135. Helen

    …To say nothing of the fact that it encourages violence as Linda pointed out.

  136. Helen

    [email protected], if I oppose the burqa can I also oppose slapping charges on someone wearing it? Do we approach all behaviour in white society by arresting the people doing it? e.g., smoking?
    If a tree falls in a forest and I fail to arrest and charge it, it’s getting away with something and that would never do right?!

  137. GregM

    …To say nothing of the fact that it encourages violence as Linda pointed out.

    Beyond parody.

    Tony Abbott said that he found the burka, where a woman’s head and whole body is concealed by the garment, “confronting” That is all. Many people in this society where such dress is rare and very different from the usual dress of women would feel the same way. That would be a personal reaction to their experience. It does not mean that such people would for a moment contemplate violence against the person wearing the burka. Only an idiot would think it would.

    Their reaction would far more likely be sadness that someone is trapped in an oppression that requires them to dress that way.

    However Linda takes it further. She says that Abbott’s comment will lead to people tearing hijabs, a very different form of dress, from womens’ heads. Abbott made no comment about the hijab and for all we know he’s all in favour of them. After all in his childhood he would have seen plenty of nuns wearing pretty much the same apparel and as a conservative Catholic no doubt he would not have thought of their dress as a bad thing.

    [personal comment about another commenters beliefs redacted ~ Mod]

  138. Mindy

    Nope a.v. I just take what they say seriously since they know what they are talking about it generally being their lived experience and all. They don’t all agree probably because they are actually different people who can think for themselves.

    I also like the suggestion, by some on here, that taking away the burqa or niqaab will somehow solve the problem of women being oppressed. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Just as a woman wearing a head covering doesn’t mean she is oppressed. The only difference is that one makes you uncomfortable and one doesn’t. That is your problem to deal with.

    Unless you are the PM. If you are the PM I would fucking expect you to recognise that making comments about other religions will encourage people who only need the merest hint of encouragement to do something about it. Veiled women do get their veils ripped off by fuckwits who think they have some right. TA getting up there and saying he finds them confronting is a clear dogwhistle to just those people. Of course there is plausible deniability and he is so sorry anyone was offended or hurt.

  139. alfred venison

    thanks for the reply. i understand what you’re saying & agree with it, but jacques wasn’t saying anyone should be arrested either. why was he railroaded? -a.v.

  140. mindy

    For a comment about a piece of clothing and a stereotypical statement about Muslim men. A burqa does not represent an oppressed woman, many choose it freely. A Muslim man =/= a man who oppresses women. It is all there in his comment.

  141. alfred venison

    “a burqa does not represent an oppressed woman”, not to you it doesn’t.
    “many choose it freely”, and some others don’t choose it freely. so that makes you right and Jacques wrong. -a.v.

  142. Casey

    Tony Abbott said that he found the burka, where a woman’s head and whole body is concealed by the garment, “confronting”. That is all. Many people in this society where such dress is rare and very different from the usual dress of women would feel the same way. That would be a personal reaction to their experience.

    And you don’t think he’s dog whistling to get votes? You don’t think he is dog whistling at the cost of a group of women we might consider, by virtue of their dress, the one of the most visible signs of the ‘other’ in the nation and an easy easy target? By your own descriptions these women are the subaltern in the nation – that’s who he is targetting. You don’t think is is part of a litany of comments which suggests that the Liberal party will be heralding in a new era of doing away with difference and implementing monoculturalist practices? Who are you upset for anyway? For those that wear the burqa? Or are you okay with the fact that Tony Abbott is so fragile that a piece of cloth makes him uncomfortable? I believe he said he was uncomfortable with homosexuality too. Is that okay as well then?

  143. Casey

    In the past few days we’ve had Kevin Rudd anxious about foreign ownership, Tony Abbott uncomfortable about a bit of fabric which heralds a different cultural practice (whether you agree with it or not). Do you see what’s going on and how pathetic this all is?

  144. Casey

    *which signifies a different cultural practice

  145. paul burns

    Howard said he wanted to make Australia relaxed and comfortable. In light of the things Abbott is uncomfortable with, is anybody else feeling the hairs on the back of their necks raise up, apart from me and Casey, since Howard was, proudly, Abbott’s mentor.
    btw, somebody should tell JWH he needs a haircut.

    I just cant wait for the Australia I’m going to be living in from next Sunday.

  146. GregM

    [email protected] I would like to respond to your post but you know that I am unable to.

    Sorry.

  147. mindy

    a.v. I don’t see any point continuing this with you. I don’t claim to be right I am simply saying that it is not as clear cut as that comment made out. If you want to ignore that fine.

  148. mindy

    “a burqa does not represent an oppressed woman”, not to you it doesn’t.

    No it doesn’t. It does not automatically mean that the woman wearing it is oppressed. How do I know this? I have listened to Muslim women speak about why they chose the burqa. Does it mean that the woman wearing it is not oppressed – of course not, I never claimed that it did.

  149. mindy

    GregM – what is stopping you from responding to Casey’s comment? Avoid saying personal stuff and you will be fine I’m sure.

  150. Taylor

    I support the French position on the burqua. It would be over the top in Australia, where you rarely see a burqua, however, and I hope it stays that way.

    Shakira Hussein is trivialising the issue when she says the burqua can be transgressive. White collar crime can be transgressive too in the right circumstances but it is hardly laudable.

    Leila Ahmed has said that she found the resurgence of the vein confonting and that is why she wrote her book about it. If a Muslim feminist with a Phd from Cambridge and a professorship at Harvard finds the veil confronting I honestly don’t think Abbott has much chance. Indeed I think he is right.

  151. Casey

    Oh well as I said, I’ve had this discussion umpteen times. Go look at the old threads if you are interested. I stand by my point and I totally agree with Paul Burns. If you all can just stop being diverted by the terrifying sign of the burqa you will see that Tony Abbott has succeeded in what he set out to do when he mentioned it as ‘uncomfortable’, at least on this blog he has.

    Your critical gaze is now no longer on Tony Abbott and his non existent policies but is now resting, as he wants you to, on that scary burqa.

    Lordy. He’s so simple Abbott, but he’s learnt a few tricks hasn’t he?

  152. GregM

    Mindy I get censored for commenting on a commenter’s beliefs, even when I am just repeating what they have said. See 139.

    I made no comment about the commenter, just on what she said. I didn’t even say that the commenter’s beliefs were crap, although I understand that that is a perfectly acceptable thing to say about another commenter in the discourse on this site. Nor did I in any way misrepresent what the commenter had said.

    If I can’t comment on a commenter’s beliefs (not the commenter) as the commenter has expressed them then why bother. Their beliefs are of course personal, for how could they be otherwise, so how can I not fall foul of the censor when I comment on them?
    .

  153. mindy

    GregM blockquotes?

    @Casey – he is a wily customer and one I have underestimated I think. Although I never thought that both Labor and Liberal would go this far down the ‘be bastards to asylum seekers and job seekers’ path. I really must read Deer Hunting with Jesus to see how people can be convinced to vote against their own best interests time and time again because I think we will soon be seeing it here.

  154. GregM

    Mindy- Blockquotes? That is rather delphic. What do you have in mind?

    And wouldn’t it be easier for me just to say that the other commenter’s opinions were crap and, if they object, say “I can call your opinions anything I damn well like.” safe in the knowledge that this is not a personal comment about another commenters beliefs?

  155. mindy

    Let me womansplain for you GregM.

    Above the comments box are a series of boxes. There is one called b-quote. Hit that button, cut and paste the bit of the comment you want to highlight then hit that button again.

    this happens

    and it is quite clear that you are quoting someone. Then don’t make any statements like ‘anyone can see..; you’d be mad not to agree…; right thinking people…’ and you should be all good. If you find yourself typing ‘X obviously thinks’ then you are probably on thin ice.

  156. alfred venison

    mindy, in parting, to be clear i have only two positions on the burqa: (1) one can’t know if a woman wears it willingly or unwillingly unless one knows her directly or trusts the provenance of her mediated testimony, and (2) the state should refrain from regulating it. i’m glad we agree on some things.

    i comment, and here at overflow, only because i think Jacques was hard done by for confiding to fellow other lefties that burqas made him uncomfortable and the appeal to authority in the form of a lot of muslim feminist scholarship has spoken in favor Jacques shut up, was insufficient and simplistic when clearly other muslim feminists oppose it.

    the french feminists at my @89 comment in fact oppose the french law, my bad, i misconstrued in my faulty second language in my impetuosity. -a.v.

  157. mindy

    But the stereotyping of women wearing the burqa as oppressed and Muslim men as oppressors isn’t an issue?

  158. Linda

    GregM “However Linda takes it further. She says that Abbott’s comment will lead to people tearing hijabs from women’s heads”

    Garbage. I said when veils are torn off it is an act of violence. Whatever type of veil (it doesn’t matter) a woman wears, it is very carefully folded and pinned very securely around the woman’s head. When it is yanked backwards suddenly [redacted (personal comment)] it is an act of violence. It hurts the woman when her head is jerked backwards, sometimes her hair is pulled out in the process. I have clients and colleagues who wear the hijab who have told me of their experiences.

    So I am not saying that Abbott’s comments will cause this to happen I am saying it already does happen, because people are confronted by the sight of it, and Abbott has now normalised this reaction because he is someone with considerable political and discursive power who is in the public arena. He is bloody dispicable as are his apologists.

  159. Linda

    despicable damnit.

  160. alfred venison

    “But the stereotyping of women wearing the burqa as oppressed and Muslim men as oppressors isn’t an issue?”

    i agree, it is an issue and shd be addressed in some way, and, not criticizing, but i would call it jumping to conclusions, perhaps using performance enhancing stereotypes to get there, i don’t know, but as i said you can’t know if its willing or unwilling unless you have been told and i don’t condone getting ahead of the evidence. and i certainly don’t condone pettifogging interference by the state. -a.v.

  161. Linda

    Saying I am repeating myself because someone is not reading my comments is hardly making it personal.

  162. Casey

    er, just a grammar correction. When I talked about Shakira @133 I meant who’s not whose.

  163. tigtog

    I’m back from a few days away up the coast at a quiet little place with super-dodgy internet access. Thanks to all who offered birthday well-wishes. Am now backing slowly away from this thread because I’m still in a happy holiday mood and am not yet ready to have it ruined. See ya later in the week.

  164. drsusancalvin

    I find it odd that anyone with Tony Abbott’s religious upbringing would say he finds a veiled woman “confronting”. Like him, I grew up seeing nuns wearing a variety of head and full length body coverings, with only their face exposed. When I see a women wearing a hijab I am comfortably reminded of these positive associations. The burqa is so close to the full length habits that only exposed the small “circle” of the eyebrows, cheeks and chin that my reflex is to associate that too with my Catholic girlhood. If I have another thought, it’s of Cousin It…

  165. FDB

    Dr S – the burqa is the one which covers the eyes with a mesh screen.

    The next down the list of coverage is the niqab, which leaves just a slit for the eyes, but at least a break in the fabric.

    Equivalent coverage to the more severe nun’s habits would be the al-amira or hijab.

    Abbott’s feelings about anything but the burqa have not, so far as I know, been made public.

  166. FDB

    My personal feelings are similar to his, by the way. At least with a niqab you can tell whether you’re seeing the same person from one day to the next, if you’re good at recognising eyes.

    Oh and also, sorry for weighing in last night as I did. I wasn’t meaning to suggest that anyone here had been pro-burqa (and I abhor the idea of banning them), but have heard allegedly feminist arguments for modest dress of one kind or another many times, and wanted to bring up the topic. It wasn’t meant to be a contribution to the ongoing stoush, and apologies for not being clearer.

  167. mindy

    Good point FDB we should stop conflating burqas and niqaabs, we don’t live in Afghanistan.

    Dr SC – I don’t know if Abbott went on to say that Australia we enjoy religious freedom or whatever. But I fear that he may not have and that is a real problem for me.

    JdM were you talking about burqas or niqaabs?

  168. jules

    Casey @ 144 and Paul Burns @ 147 youse aren’t the only ones to find this disturbing. Bernadi suggested using anti muslim feeling overtly a few years ago and was overridden by Scott Morrison and Abbott. Its clear Abbott didn’t can the idea, he just saved it for when he thought it’d be the most use.

    I spose it could be Abbott would rather all women wore netball outfits, or less, were in high school and he was younger again. Its easy to assume that he doesn’t like burquas cos they interfere with his grud given right to be a perv. I doubt it tho. He’s a divisive piece of shit.

    If he becomes PM he’ll still be a divisive piece of shit.

    More accurately – a sleazy, divisive piece of shit.

    With anti terror laws at his disposal.

    And if Rudd had kept his mouth shut Abbott would be nothing but another failed opposition leader who was generous in his claiming of travel and accommodation entitlements and medieval in his thinking.

  169. alfred venison

    varieties of muslim veil courtesy of the bbc.-a.v.

  170. faustusnotes

    I think I should have the right to decide what women wear. Who do these muslim chicks think they are, making their own decisions about how much flesh I can see?

  171. GregM

    JdM were you talking about burqas or niqaabs?

    Why don’t you go back to his post which so mightily offended you that you referred to it more than once as crap to find out what he was talking about.

    After the way you have abused him you can hardly expect he’s going to be bothered responding to you.

  172. mindy

    I didn’t stop him clarifying GregM did I? He could have done so at any stage and I would have apologised. But since we were talking about Australia then I am assuming he meant niqaab. Not an unreasonable assumption. If he doesn’t wish to respond so be it. We all make our own decisions about whether to stick around when someone disagrees with our opinions. I have done it many times since 2005. I have mansplained to, condescended to and abused here as well. Anyone who believes that it is just the blokes who get attacked here needs to read more carefully.

  173. Ambigulous

    “I have beenmansplained to ….”
    ?

  174. mindy

    yep, sorry. Thanks Ambigulous. Typing while watching Masterchef.

  175. Fran Barlow

    On the “burqua” issue …

    1. As an aspirant for the office of PM, his comment that he finds the burqua confronting is likely, in context, to subvert good relations between the communities. Whatever his personal sentiments on the matter, he ought to have kept his piece. It would be very hard for any politician in public space to speak in a way that dealt with the complexities of this matter in a way that was respectful to those who for whatever reason, wear it.

    Tony Abbott, in particular, would have less standing than almost any public figure to do this, and it’s hard to escape the impression that, as with his “gaffes” earlier in the campaign (“sex appeal”, “body contact”) he is dogwhistling his base and also doing misdirection — this time at the expense of another marginalised community. That’s repulsive.

    2. It’s very important that whatever one thinks of the burqua, that one does not in one’s dealing marginalise the wearer more than they may already be. If one believes the woman is a victim of purdah, then she is owed your solidarity rather than condemnation, and if she is not, then she is at least owed your respect.

    That said …

    3. I regard the burqua as symbolic of purdah, and thus misogyny — and am hostile to it on cultural grounds. Like most who count themselves as westerners,I also like the idea of being able to look into someone’s face as an equal and regret the barrier this imposes. For me, the burqua is not an Islamic thing but an Islamist/Salafist thing. It makes as much and as little sense to associate the garb of the KKK with Christianity. In the event I ever acquire the standing to ask someone wearing the burqua to account for the garment, I’ll ensure I keep a respectful tone. It’s not my place to badger someone into dressing so as to make me feel politically or culturally mollified. In the unlikely circumstance that I became a public figure, I’d certainly be speaking a lot more circumspectly than did Abbott in this case.

  176. faustusnotes

    watching masterchef? Are you confronted by the headscarf-wearing chef?

    It’s worth noting that Abbott’s comment on “confronting” was in defense of a liberal candidate who also tried to draw a link with criminality (’cause of the eternal fear of white Aussie men that the woman they’re talking to might be a man). So he was adding material to an already quite offensive little presentation.

    Furthermore today or yesterday he described the Syrian civil war as “baddies fighting baddies.” Let’s not make the mistake of thinking for one moment that he actually cares about the rights of Arab women – those women dying of gas attacks in Syria are just “baddies.” But once again a couple of crusading white men on the left, who want to “rescue” foreign women from their oppression, get sucked into this stupid posturing about what women choose to wear, and we have to reanimate this stupid zombie horse and flog it some more.

  177. faustusnotes

    Fran: “kept his piece”? Are you referring to his infamous budgie smugglers?

  178. alfred venison

    At least with a niqab you can tell whether you’re seeing the same person from one day to the next, if you’re good at recognising eyes.

    oh FDB, and you a musician! surely if you’re no good at recognising eyes you could still recognise the voice? 😉

  179. mindy

    I would like Samira to win. But cold pumpkin puree could be her undoing 🙁

    A head covering while cooking is a great idea. I don’t like finding hair in my food, even if it is my own.

  180. Fran Barlow

    Fran: “kept his piece”?

    Gosh … that was careless of me … peace of course … thanks for the note AV …

  181. drsusancalvin

    @167 Yeah, righteo, thanks for that fdb… (what is mansplaining again?) My point was that some women are veiled for religious reasons, and Tony Abbott was raised with that practice. Poor love, has he felt confronted when someone wearing a motorcycle helmet with the visor down rides into view? Does a trip to the snow involve potential ski mask/goggle trauma?

  182. mindy

    DrSC I reckon the large sunglasses fad we have just had must have been hard on him too. I hope none of the factories he visited had people in welding masks, what about hospitals and surgical masks even.

  183. Val

    GregM @ 173
    I guess that me jumping into the debate between Mindy and J de L ( I don’t think you both mean JdM) also upset him – hence his rude comments to me – and I did have some hesitation and I think I was reasonably circumspect at first.

    However it was when Jacques started on about Mindy supposedly having it in for him and being deceitful about it (in a comment made to me) that I got a bit fed up. Those are such familiar themes for women and of course are familiar themes in responses of privileged groups to subordinate groups – who are characteristically seen as sneaky because they are not seen as having a legitimate claim on authority.

    This of course was seen in so much of the criticism of JG here and elsewhere – the argument that she didn’t take over from Rudd for the reasons publicly given but because she had been sneakily undermining him all along due to her sneaky and illegitimate desire for power. As I said @ 120 I don’t think this stuff has been resolved and I think it needs to be. I’m even thinking of volunteering to do some research in the archives myself as it kind of, arguably, might be said to be related to my research ( though I’m not sure my supervisor would see that!). Couldn’t do it for a few weeks though.

    Regarding the burqas ( or niqaabs) I don’t have any expertise on this so I haven’t said much but it seems to me that the key point is context as Casey, Fran et al have said – Abbott was using it as a dog whistling thing, and this is likely to have harsh impacts for the women wearing the garments as well as being wrong in itself.

  184. Chris

    drsusancalvin – by veiled do you mean head/hair covered or the entire face covered? Because I’m not aware of traditional Catholic clothing which covered the entire face and I had though that Abbott was referring to the Burqa where the entire face is covered isn’t it?

    mindy @ 184 – the social aspect of having eye contact in every day interaction is I think relevant. Its considered quite rude by many for someone not to remove sunglasses when interacting with another person in situations where sunglasses aren’t actually necessary. And adults who refuse (or more likely just find it really difficult) to make eye contact are often viewed with suspicion. Wearing a motorcycle helmet around with the visor down in a shop is likely to raise suspicion as well and some shops have signs that attempt to ban the practice (I don’t know if its legally enforceable though).

  185. Val

    Also GregM while I’m talking to you, you seem pretty confused about feminism. When I said that patriarchy could not be dismantled in one generation, you seemed to accept it. Yet when Linda talks about institutionalised power, you jump down her throat. Not sure what’s going on there – I mean in Australia most (not all) of the formal legal structures of patriarchy have been dismantled but it is certainly still institutionalised in cultural and social practice.
    So what are you saying?

  186. mindy

    Absolutely Chris, I was being tongue in cheek. I have never seen anyone in Australia in the full burqa, a few in the niqaab, mostly the hijab. Both the niqaab and the hijab allow for eye contact.

    I think they can refuse to serve you in a bank if you don’t remove your motorbike helmet. Not sure about other shops.

  187. drsusancalvin

    @186 Chris habits did not cover the entire face, but many formed a deep cowl that effectively obscured the face from view.This article makes a comparison, and throws in a little history of the abuse of women who chose to wear the veil.

  188. mindy

    Very interesting article.

  189. GregM

    [email protected] thanks for your comment.

    Mindy is now saying that the stoush between her and Jacques would never have occurred if only he had clarified whether he was referring to burkas or niqabs.

    So it was all a dreadful misunderstanding and, of course, all his fault.

    I can’t see that resolution of the issues between Gillard and Rudd will ever happen or achieve anything. But best wishes for your research,if you get the chance to do it.

    For my part I believe that she is one of the best prime Ministers Australia has had with an excellent record of achievement in the implementation of policies for our nation, sabotaged by the overweening vanity (and now, it seems, hubris) of Rudd and I have said so on LP, my comment being adopted with approval by Helen at the time.

    Oh, and since you mention it, I am not confused about feminism. As Julia Gillard said of misogyny, patriarchy doesn’t explain everything but it explains some things. When however it is used as an excuse for all the world’s ills, especially by highly privileged women whose business it seems to be to make that excuse for everything then I will call them on that.

    There are plenty of privileged women in our society who have taken advantage of the the dismantling of the patriarchy, which has been taking place in this society over many generations now, to create their own little citadels of privilege and adopt all of the paraphernalia of the patriarchy to defend and extend their privilege.

  190. Chris

    Absolutely Chris, I was being tongue in cheek. I have never seen anyone in Australia in the full burqa, a few in the niqaab, mostly the hijab. Both the niqaab and the hijab allow for eye contact.

    There’s been a few times when I’ve seen someone dressed in a full burqa in one of my local supermarkets. Its not all a common occurrence and even niqaabs are not common. The first time it occurred I think “confronting” would probably have been a reasonably accurate description to how I felt, perhaps simply because it was the first time and its likely that I’d just get used to it if it was a common occurrence. But then I’m someone who is more than happy to minimise social interaction – eg I’ll take the self-checkout over the manned checkout lane any time I can. But its not a reaction I felt the first time I saw someone in a hijab or even a niqaab. Hard to explain…

    As a side note, given the improvements in the efficiency of the surveillance state, wearing a burqa is something more of us may want to do in the future. It’d certainly stop any facial recognition software and depending on the rest of the design perhaps even foil identification based on gait.

    drsusancalvin @ 189 – thanks, that’s quite an interesting read.

    Another observation I have about the topic is that hiding the distinguishing features of a group of people (or making them all look the same) is often used in TV/film to dehumanise them and make the audience less sympathetic to them. Eg. the storm troopers in Star Wars. I wonder where this common reaction comes from and can’t help but wonder what effect this has in real life.

  191. faustusnotes

    The Poll Bludger is reporting 54-46 to the Coalition with Abbott taking lead as preferred PM, Rudd on net disapproval, and the ALP’s primary on 33%.

    I wonder if it would be worse than that with Gillard in charge …?

  192. faustusnotes

    oops, wrong thread

  193. Linda

    [email protected] “There are plenty of privileged women in our society who have taken advantage of the the dismantling of the patriarchy, which has been taking place in this society over many generations now, to create their own little citadels of privilege and adopt all of the paraphernalia of the patriarchy to defend and extend their privilege.”

    Do you believe that all the women who post here have a rich husband a PhD and a mortgage? Do you think that only men have legitimate claim to any privilege?

  194. Casey

    patriarchy doesn’t explain everything but it explains some things.

    It’s not like you Greg, to misquote. So let’s get the correct reference in here:

    I’ve been a little bit bemused by those colleagues in the newspapers who have admitted that I have suffered more pressure as a result of my gender than other prime ministers in the past but then concluded that it had zero effect on my political position or the political position of the Labor Party. It doesn’t explain everything, it doesn’t explain nothing, it explains some things. And it is for the nation to think in a sophisticated way about those shades of grey.

    So she was talking about her gender not the patriarchy. Patriarchy is another thing.

    There are plenty of privileged women in our society who have taken advantage of the the dismantling of the patriarchy, which has been taking place in this society over many generations now, to create their own little citadels of privilege and adopt all of the paraphernalia of the patriarchy to defend and extend their privilege.

    There has been a lot of work done in feminist theory on the patriarchy. It is a social system of male dominance which is oppressive to women. Talking about the injustices as they manifest exposes them and attempts to unravel the power structures which allow injustices to occur. Now if you, as a man – who by virtue of being a man would not be subject to these sorts of oppressions that women specifically endure – wish to start a stoush about the reach of the patriarchy in a woman’s life because Gina Rinehart is rich or something and therefore wish to assert how it does not affect every aspect of every other woman’s life because Gina Rinehart Gina Rinehart, I for one, very much look forward to the prospect of your gyrating contributions to the body of work which explores and maps the power of the patriarchy over millions of women’s lives.

    Or, you could just give in and let me bite you.

    Go on.

    Invite me.

  195. alfred venison

    hello! Jacques? -alf.

  196. Val

    Sorry I keep referring to Jacques de Molay as J de L ( and even suggesting to others that this is right). I have no idea why I’ve been doing this! Apologies

  197. alfred venison

    patriarchy is a form of hegemony, non? 😉 -a.v. (in the mood; its off to work we go, high-ho, high-ho. for the record: i have friday on my mind.)

  198. Val

    GregM @ 191
    I concede that it has taken longer than one generation to dismantle the legal structures supporting patriarchy ( and as I noted the project is still not finished even here in Australia let alone in many other countries of the world). However you have not acknowledged at all that patriarchy is still institutionalised in cultural and social practice.
    The last part of your comment seems to argue that some women have taken advantage of the dismantling of the patriarchy to build their own “citadels” of power using the “paraphernalia of the patriarchy” which seriously and with all due respect, doesn’t make a lot of sense.

    Anyway as stated on the election thread I’m working on the @WePublicHealth campaign this week so better leave this and get on with it.

  199. PavCat

    the dismantling of the patriarchy

    You cannot be serious.

  200. Katz

    Patriarchy has had a few edges knocked off it.

    It is now more streamlined.

  201. Helen

    Ah, That Thing. I’ve had a blog post in the works forever on that but never seem to get time to finish it. One reason is I keep getting new examples and data points to add to it.

    There should be a scientific name for it, like the water cycle where you get evaporation and then condensation and it all goes around in a circle. In this case whenever women actually do start to get anywhere near the levers of power or a largER slice of the economic wealth (never as much as the men, yet, though – Rinehart’s an outlier), they must be deemed bad feminists because Privilege and squashed down again, and so it goes round again.

    “But but but we have to change the nature of economics and society not just more of the sa…” Yes. Yes. But it’s strange that this excellent principle is always invoked when we see women getting (what we deem to be) too much of anything. Actually, it’s just as much the responsibility of men to dismantle hierarchical privilege in society and the economy. More so, really. But we only talk about it when we’re talking about feminists.

  202. Helen

    Shorter @203: “You laydeez can have your equality when we’re done smashing capitalism. No, I’m not going to tell you when I’m going to get around tuit. I’m watching the cricket FFS! Get me a beer.”

  203. Brian

    Helen @ 204, I’ve stayed out of this thread, but can’t resist. My daughter when she was younger was very active in environmental groups. She got sick of the men being up front and the women looking after the biscuits and tea. When challenged the men said exactly what you said.

    She went off and did a graduate diploma in women’s issues then a social work degree and higher degree. I remember a survey she did on women’s experience in environmental groups. Along the way worked on practical effects of male domination at a personal level, eg survivors of domestic violence.

  204. Terangeree

    … everybody seems to nag me…

  205. Helen

    Brian, what a leetist 😉
    Yes, there’s movers and shakers in even uncapitalistic groups. Good on her for wanting to be a mover and a shaker. As does mine. We have great daughters!

  206. alfred venison

    ..even my old man looks good…

  207. FDB

    Dr. S:

    Yeah, righteo, thanks for that fdb… (what is mansplaining again?)

    It’s the thing which I didn’t do. You drew a false equivalence, I EXplained it to you. I happen to be a man.

    Deal with it.

  208. drsusancalvin

    I EXplained it to you. I happen to be a man. Deal with it.

    Yeah, thanks again fdb, for that, and the side order of aggro. To elucidate, I didn’t demonstrate a misunderstanding, lack of knowledge or confusion about the difference between the various garb; you assumed it. As I opined …

    The burqa is so close to the full length habits that only exposed the small “circle” of the eyebrows, cheeks and chin…

    If you thought I was confused or mistaken or wrong you could have asked a Q like Chris @186 did

    drsusancalvin – by veiled do you mean head/hair covered or the entire face covered? Because I’m not aware of traditional Catholic clothing which covered the entire face and I had though that Abbott was referring to the Burqa where the entire face is covered isn’t it?

    and I could have replied, as I did @189 giving some weight to my original opinion.

    Until you made that comment @167 to me you were neither/nor … Thanks for the strong confirmation @209

  209. Casey

    Oh dear, FDB, you do look rather patronising.

    Just sayin…

  210. paul burns

    I have a vague recollection that in my recent reading on late antiquity/early medieval history, reading women were in fact veiled at some early period in the late Roman Empire/ Early Byzantine/Visigoth/Lombard etc etc period, etc, etc that is first/second century Christianity. I’m sorry I can’t be more specific. Might be somewhere in the works of Peter Brown or Julia H. Smith or Robin Lane Fox’s Pagans and Christians. Sorry I can’t be more specific than that, but these were all mostly works on late antiquity & early medieval social/religious history.
    So it has long been a custom in both Europe and pre-Islamic Middle East.
    Just saying.

  211. FDB

    You’re right Dr S, I had made the assumption that you either didn’t know what a burqa was or didn’t know what Mr Rabbit had said.

    I never considered the other alternative – that you genuinely don’t believe there’s much difference between completely covering one’s face and NOT completely covering one’s face – because frankly it’s an utterly barmy proposition to hold.

    Please forgive me.

  212. alfred venison

    I was schooled by nuns too & i thought at the time it was a long bow to equate a burqa with a nun’s habit, full length with cowl or not, but in defence of the writer, upon re-reading, i note she said only that the burqa reminds her of a nun’s habit with cowl, up to the face, as it were, and remarked in the same comment that the visible face is where they part in her reminiscences. but re the whole “mansplaining” vs “belabouring the obvious” thing i bow out. –a.v.

  213. drsusancalvin

    You’re right Dr S,

    Please forgive me.

    FDB @213 Yeah, thanks for that apology. See? I’m doing what you did and just ignoring part of your post. However, If you click the link I provided @189 and referenced @210 you would be able to read the reasons for a comparison between the burqa and the deeply cowled starched headdress and full length attire of Catholic nuns. Or you could just keep on doing what you are doing, going off half cocked.

  214. FDB

    I read what you wrote.

    I think it is utterly barmy.

    You are entitled to the opinion that there’s no real difference between deeply cowled and completely covered. I strongly disagree.

  215. alfred venison

    so let me see if i can get this right, he’s not “mansplaining”, he’s “disagreeing”.
    -a.v.

  216. Katz

    John Winston Howard, hunkered down in the “bunker” in the Australian Embassy in Washington, post 11 Sept 2001 attacks, penned a solicitous letter to George Walker Bush.

    Remarkably, naturally instinctively, Howard in this missive assumed that the atrocities were an attack “on America” rather than an attack by Americans.

    Given the recent atrocity in Oklahoma City, committed by Americans, how did Howard know? And why did he rely on a guess when writing to the president?

  217. Su

    Bearded men in sunglasses and headgear are no less covered and nigh on as indistinguishable, one from the other, as women in burquas. Won’t someone please think of the hipsters, Brunswick needs an intervention. The degree of coverage is beside the point, oppression limits self-determination whether the taste of the oppressor runs to burquas or Freakin Princess Leia bikinis. Much easier to bicker about the dimensions of a womans clothing, however, policed for her by all sides of the “debate”. You’re both being insufferable arses.

  218. Chris

    Bearded men in sunglasses and headgear are no less covered and nigh on as indistinguishable, one from the other, as women in burquas.

    I’m obviously not up to date with modern fashion. Photos please!

  219. tigtog

    Here you go, Chris.

  220. GregM

    Remarkably, naturally instinctively, Howard in this missive assumed that the atrocities were an attack “on America” rather than an attack by Americans.

    Given the recent atrocity in Oklahoma City, committed by Americans, how did Howard know? And why did he rely on a guess when writing to the president?

    This is dreadful Katz.

    Do you have a link to the letter that we can look at to see when it was written and so inform ourselves whether it might have been based in information that had been reliably provided to him at the time he wrote it or whether it was just some flim-flam he fired off to while away the hours while he was in the bunker?

  221. jules

    FDB The difference between a nun’s get up and a burqua is surely in the eye of the beholder isn’t it?

    That is what this whole discussion is about.

    Its totally wrong to assume people only wear that stuff cos of islamic oppression. There are songs about what makes people choose to appear confronting. To reject social norms and wear their identity in their apparel. So how is it appropriate to assume that everyone who wears a burqua does so out of fear of their husbands. How the fuck do we know? Unless we ask everyone wearing one.

    Every time some redneck clown suggests I should cut off my dreadlock (yes i have one – it reaches halfway down my back) it means that dread has another year of life. Despite what a pain it is in hot weather, and that it weighs a bit more than short hair.

    Its a mild inconvenience compared to the personal satisfaction of making idiots uncomfortable.

  222. Ootz

    Bearded men in sunglasses and headgear are no less covered and nigh on as indistinguishable, one from the other, as women in burquas.

    who gives a shit if you play music like that .. not everyone aspires to be Lady Gaga.

  223. Katz

    GregM

    Howard quotes his letter in “Lazarus Rising”. You may recall I’m listening to it so don’t have hard copy.

    Howard implies strongly that he dashed off the letter while sitting in the above-mentioned “bunker”.

    He was getting updates from staffers and security guys but essentially he was incommunicado, it seems. He appears to have had no professional intelligence. He was flying by the seat of his pants.

    This is no way to form a national stance on a sensitive issue. How would it have looked if it turned out that some Timothy McVeigh characters had taken control of those planes?

  224. Taylor

    The difference between a nun’s get up and a burqua is surely in the eye of the beholder isn’t it?

    Jules this is surely true providing you can validly claim an exemption from wearing the burqua in Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan on the basis that you are only a lay person, or that you prefer to wear a habit.

    I have my doubts.

  225. Su

    You’re too oblique for this prosaic mind, Ootz, and I often mistake your meaning, but if that was meant to be your paraphrase of me, then it is way off. The locus of oppression is the limitation of a womans self sovereignty, to make it all about clothing, especially when your response to oppressive stricture is yet another stricture is to fatally misunderstand the situation. The point being made by Dr S and others above, is that the semiotics of veiling is not simple, and that ironically, each time the west has waged a culture war with the veil as a target, it has resulted in more women abandoning other forms of clothing and taking up the veil, as it becomes a symbol of resistance to cultural imperialism.

  226. mindy

    That is an adorable photo TT if only all hipsters were that cute.

  227. jules

    What does Afghanistan or Saudi Arabia have to do with anything?

    The context of this discussion is Tony Abbott dog whistling about what other people choose to wear down the street in Australia.

    FDB said he felt uncomfortable with some apparel that stops people seeing any of other peoples faces. But really unless those people want him to see their faces its his tough luck. Its a fair point he’s raising if he was sposed to have some regular communication with them, some form of relationship, especially if he struggles with non visual cues for identifying people. Without that complication his worries about not seeing someones face are unreasonable in that its not up to him how much of other people’s faces he gets to see.

    So I can see why he thinks there is a major difference between a nuns getup and various islamic ones. But thats just a personal preference on his part, based on how much of the other person’s skin he can see. From another perspective they are both patriarchal restrictions on identity. From another they both could be liberation from our societies insane obsession with image, from another both parody on the way every acceptable public image is so similar. (Can you prove there is no one wearing a berka or habit for that reason? You can make all sorts of assumptions about why people wear what they wear and they may even turn out to be accurate but they’re only assumptions.)

    Its a bit rude calling someone balmy in the context of all that – assuming your perspective about “real difference” is the only one with any validity. That is the sort of dogmatic attitude I’d normally associate with the someone who might force their missus to wear a berka and walk 2 steps behind them.

  228. Ootz

    Not at all paraphrasing Su, afterall my linked song is named after the women or girls of Boghassa, whose liberation is celebrated therein!

    I wore the veil
    And then so many, so many words were said
    I wore the veil
    Yet I mostly wore these words
    And then wrapped them around my head

    by Farah Chamma

  229. Su

    I see, thanks for making that clear, Ootz, I couldn’t find the lyrics and youtube isn’t loading for me at the moment. I’m not here to verify or manifest – that is a very powerful.

  230. Taylor

    What does Afghanistan or Saudi Arabia have to do with anything?

    Good lord Jules are you serious? A big part of the reason why this clothing is considered confronting is that it is (objectively) associated with a fundamentalist, oppressive and violent ideology. Most people in liberal societies find these ideologies confronting.

    Binding your feet would also be regarded as confronting. Wearing Nazi insignia also. The difference is that there is no powerful regime enforcing these last two practices today. Whereas there is for the burqua.

  231. alfred venison

    hello! Jacques! -alfred venison

  232. Helen

    The difference is that there is no powerful regime enforcing these last two practices today. Whereas there is for the burqua.

    But that’s shifting the argument somewhat, as we are discussing people covering up in our country, not in theirs.
    Also, in countries where niquab/burqa is more prevalent it’s enforced by Taliban and other cultural leaders rather than the “regime”. And there’s a definite pattern of a resurgence in places where the West has gone in with its tanks and bombs to “rescue” the citizenry. It appears to have a very refreshing effect on reactionary rebel groups.

  233. jules

    Taylor, we’re talking about what people wear in Australia not elsewhere. There’s no regime here enforcing anything, cept clothing itself. (And safety clothing I spose. Hi vis workwear is enforced by law in certain situations.)

    By Nazi regalia I assume you mean swastika like images. They are used the world over by people who have nothing to do with that particular bit of historical nastiness. Its used as a sacred symbol in many places. I’ve even seen them used in indigenous Australian art more than once. Specifically at the Hara point/lower D’an D’ien – something some martial arts refer to and claim is the best place for movement (including breathing) to originate.

    So a “swastika” will have different meanings dependent on where its seen. It won’t have the same baggage in Manilla that it’ll have in downtown Tel Aviv.

    The same thing is possible, and even probable for the varieties of Islamic headware that people are free to use in Australia. In Australia there is certainly more cultural space for people to wear that stuff to express themselves and their identity, especially given the anti Muslim bullshit we’ve been subjected to since 2001.

    If you object to that sort of thing ignoring it is far more likely to make it go away than whinging about it.

  234. Katz

    Remarkably natural, John Howard in “Lazarus Rising” provides a minute accounting of the Tampa, Nauru, Operation Relix, Children Overboard events without *once* mentioning Australia’s subscription to the UN Conventions on Refugees.

    Moreover, he repeatedly smears potential asylum seekers as “illegal immigrants”.

    Even a suburban lawyer might be surprised by Howard’s “instinctive” apparent legal ignorance.

    And BTW, upon taking on the task of recording his own prime ministership, “pragmatic” is emerging as another overused word.

  235. Moz of Yarramulla

    I appear to be more of a political tragic than I thought. I’m home with the (man)flu, we’re in the middle of changing internet providers so no ADSL,and iI’ve blown 250MB of data on my phone before lunchtime. At this rate my sole public appearance today will be grovelling down to the supermarket to buy a data only prepaid sim card. So expect my posts here to be succinct to the point of cryptic (for those who don’t already find that)

  236. Taylor

    Helen it is only shifting the argument if we do not live in a globalised world where virulent ideologies are transmitted by the Internet. We notoriously do. Also “regime” is capable of referring to any system of control, which is the sense in which I meant it. Further, opposing fundamentalism is vital and does not entail bombing civilians.

    Jules I do not want to see people embracing the SS uniform in Australia and neither I am sure do you. That does not make us oppressively anti-German. Fundamentalism is not Islam. Anti-fundamentalism is not anti-Islam.

  237. Helen

    No, Taylor, you mentioned “powerful regimes enforcing the burqa”. “Regimes” does imply governments. One could streeeeeetch the point to cover fundamentalist sub-groups in society, but then you’d have to also look at Catch the Fire, the Exclusive Brethren, FLDS and a million other splinter religions. We don’t particularly like them, we are happy they’re merely splinters, but they are allowed to participate in our society.

    If a woman is being *forced* to wear a burqa by an excessively religious community and she is living in Australia, she is in the same boat as the members of other kooky cults and has legal and welfare remedies. But people don’t always want to cut themselves off from their families. And exposing them to the criminal justice system by banning their clothing to “save” them is no solution.

  238. jules

    If people want to do that nazi bullshit its their business. I’ve only ever objected when they’ve got violent. I don’t like it, but didn’t we actually to the second ww2 to defend people’s right to wear what they want?
    Maybe not directly, but that was a consequence of that particular historical fight.

    I’m not confident saying that everyone wearing hardcore Islamic clothing is an oppressed fundamentalist, or oppressed by fundamentalists.

    If you can prove it to me I’ll be more likely to support what you’re saying.

  239. Chris

    But people don’t always want to cut themselves off from their families. And exposing them to the criminal justice system by banning their clothing to “save” them is no solution.

    Abbott didn’t actually say he want to criminalise the Burqa though did he? It think Bernadi did a while back, but he got shut down. And saying that you wouldn’t like for something to be commonplace in Australia’s future or that it is confronting is not the same as saying you want to criminalise it. Just how much of a push is there out there outside of the loonies to criminalise wearing of the burqa?

  240. jules

    Chris:

    I’ve been asked about the burqa on lots of occasions and whenever I’m asked about the burqa I’ve said that I find it a very confronting form of attire. Frankly, it’s not the sort of attire that I’d like to see widespread in our streets but, this is a free country. Everyone’s entitled to make their choice and if people want to wear a burqa it’s ultimately their business. Now as I understand it, Ray King’s comments were more to do with policing and how you could properly identify people in policing situations given their attire and my understanding is that the O’Farrell Government in New South Wales has changed the rules about identifying people to address that very issue.

    That is Abbott’s actual comment from his website, and to be fair to him, which isn’t something I like doing, he’s pretty reasonable about it.

    He expresses his personal views then points out people can wear whatever the hell they like in a free country. Its alot less of a dog whistle than I first thought it was.

    Doesn’t change the fact that him being confronted by it is tough luck for him tho. if he was an inconclusive leader his first comment would have been along the lines of “people are free to wear what they like no matter what I feel about it” then given his opinion. It would probably have been reported the same way but his emphasis would have been different.

    I find it more disturbing that he didn’t say the idea of shooting suspects with micro chips via sniper rifle was appalling and he wanted no part of it.

  241. jules

    inclusive leader, not inconclusive…..

  242. Helen

    Yes, the red mist which the mere thought of a burqa engenders in the collective brain has obscured the fact that the topic of the news report was that a Liberal candidate in Western Sydney – Western Sydney, folks!* The suppository of all wisdom! – has, with a straight face, advocated shooting randoms with microchips. Using guns which, according to the report, he thinks are real but in fact are from a science fiction story.

    We expect this kind of thing from the fruit and nut assortment in the micro parties, but this is the Librul candidate. Heaven help us all. Now that’s the scary element in this story.

    *Heh!

  243. Katz

    All backbenchers need to know is how to turn left or right in House divisions.

    This skill may be beyond Ray King.

  244. jules

    “…he thinks are real but in fact are from a science fiction story.”

    I know – ffs.

    And he has the support of Roger Rogerson. (not the good one.)

  245. Mindy

    Maybe we will look back on this presumably coming Liberal government in years to come and laugh.

  246. faustusnotes

    Maybe?

  247. paul burns

    If they don’t kill us all off first.

  248. jules

    I’m still hoping to look back at Abbott on Sunday and laugh.

  249. GregM

    Binding your feet would also be regarded as confronting. Wearing Nazi insignia also. The difference is that there is no powerful regime enforcing these last two practices today. Whereas there is for the burqua.

    Actually footbinding was a Chinese custom and was not enforced by the Qing dynasty, which ruled China from 1644 to 1912. They were a Manchu dynasty and it was not the custom of Manchus to bind the feet of their girls.

    On the other hand they enforced rigorously the wearing of queues by Chinese men as a sign of subservience. The penalty for not conforming with the Manchu hairstyle was death.

  250. GregM

    All backbenchers need to know is how to turn left or right in House divisions.
    This skill may be beyond Ray King.

    But if he was microchipped he could be linked to GPS to guide him.

  251. Chris

    jules @ 242 – yea given the context of the quote – he was explicitly asked about it – and the full text of what he said it doesn’t even seem like dog whistling to me. It’s probably something that he wouldn’t have wanted to talk about and potentially cause controversy over anyway. At this stage he’s just trying to not make any waves and coast in.

  252. jules

    I must admit what Abbott said in that quote seems perfectly reasonable. Which is not easy or pleasant to do.

    Micro chipped by sniper rifle … I hear Ray King wants to recruit T – 1000s to the police force after seeing a doco on their amazing work with the LAPD.

  253. alfred venison

    did you hear that, Jacques? what abbott said is “reasonable”. -comrade venison, alf. (type I of)

  254. Jacques de Molay

    Yes, hello Alfred!

  255. alfred venison

    good one, Jacques, nice to see your avatar again. -a.v.

  256. Paul Norton

    It occurs to me that the Australians of 1788 would have found the attire of the absurdly overdressed unauthorised boat arrivals rather confronting, and would have hoped that it would not have become a common sight in this country.

  257. Katz

    But don’t forget that in 1788, God wasn’t on the side of the longstanding residents of Australia.

    Oh … wait.

  258. jules

    Paul N are you suggesting berka’s are the first signs of an Islamic invasion that will lead to a genocide of up to 20 million Australians and the destruction of our culture in many places.

  259. Casey

    Actually Paul N., what they first thought upon seeing the frilled and pompadoured English was deeply amusing. From Inga Clendinnen’s Dancing with Strangers

    Because the British were both beardless and came swaddled in ‘cloathing’ there had been baffled speculation among their hosts as to their sex … Australians [the Aboriginal people] followed different protocols for the genders even more earnestly than did the British, so any ambiguity in this area was deeply embarrassing. Accordingly King [of the Sirius] had one of his men unbutton and publish his privates, at which sight the locals made a ‘great shout of admiration’ – or so King interpreted it.

  260. Helen

    If Abbott had just stepped off the boat in his budgie smugglers that wouldn’t have been necessary.

  261. Su

    I’m not sure if this is the right thread, but did anyone else hear the Background Briefing investigtion of AMSA? it sounds very much like the dysfunction of DIAC has infected AMSA who are taking a wait and see, offload responsibility where possible stance to maritime distress calls from boats carrying asylum seekers. The director of AMSA, Alan Lloyd, answering questions at the coronial inquest into the sinking of Siev 358, referred to distress calls as “Refugee patter”. Chilling.
    http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/backgroundbriefing/asylum-seekers-drowning-on-our-watch/4916110

  262. mindy

    Su I have heard from people shall we say less than sympathetic to asylum seekers that once the boats reach international waters they put out a distress call whether in distress or not. I do not know if this is true and have no way of verifying it. It does sound rather like a convenient excuse but then again if it is true then AMSA could say that they are saving thousands of taxpayer dollars by only responding when boats really are in distress. Which wouldn’t be a problem if they could reach them really quickly.

  263. Chris

    Su @ 263 – I listened to that on the radio on the weekend. I think the the behavior of AMSA has been appalling in at least some cases – especially where they know that Indonesia has no capability to perform rescues. I think the behavior of Indonesia search and rescue has also been very very poor – sometimes it appears they don’t really care about the fate of the asylum seekers either.

    That being said, the impression I got from the show was that there do appear to be cases of asylum seeker boats asking for help when they are not in distress and at the very least attempt to wait to ask for help until they are within Australia’s search and rescue zone. That only has to happen a few times for the front line workers in AMSA to get pretty cynical about the situation.

    I don’t think its particularly surprising – they’re in pretty dodgy boats which could easily get into serious trouble in the future. If you can pre-emptively ask for help and it arrives that’s a much safer strategy than trying to continue alone. After all you’re not going to be treated any differently by Australia if you ask for help or not. Or even if you aren’t in distress and ask for help.

    Mindy @ 264 – my understanding is that technically speaking getting into international waters is not sufficient (although some boats have rung Australia for help when still in Indonesian waters). Countries have responsibility for certain parts of international waters when it comes to search and rescue, and IIRC most of the waters between Indonesia and Christmas Island is actually the responsibility of Indonesia. Though there is an agreement that Australia will help if Indonesia is unable to.

  264. mindy

    Thanks for clarifying Chris.

  265. jungney

    Chris, Su and Mindy above: see Tony Kevin’s ‘Reluctant Rescuers’ for an account of how federal policy has affected rescue at sea actions by Australian services.

  266. mindy

    Looks like a very interesting book. Some great endorsements there.

  267. Su

    Yes, he was one of the interviewees Jungney.

    Countries have responsibility for certain parts of international waters when it comes to search and rescue, and IIRC most of the waters between Indonesia and Christmas Island is actually the responsibility of Indonesia. Though there is an agreement that Australia will help if Indonesia is unable to.

    The agreement is that whomever is the first point of contact is obliged to respond to the call until the responsible agency is in a position to take over, instead of which AMSA spent 7 hours hectoring the Indonesians to take over the responsibility, in which time the remaining survivors from SIEV358 drowned. From the coast of Java, the departure point in this case, the search and rescue capability of the Indonesian agency, BASARNAS, is 5 nautical miles. All AMSA needed to do was alert shipping in the area to have some chance of saving those 102 people.

    No doubt there are calls that are not genuine, but it seems that AMSA now starts out with the assumption that a call is not genuine, and refuses to speak to how they make a determination of genuine distress on the grounds that it is classified information. Given the number of people who have drowned after they’ve alerted AMSA, whatever their method, it is not working.

  268. FDB

    And yet time after time we manage to summon the resources to rescue some rich white twit trying to sail solo around the world.

  269. FDB

    Jules:

    FDB The difference between a nun’s get up and a burqua is surely in the eye of the beholder isn’t it?

    As is the difference between a burqa and a bikini. What’s your point?

  270. jungney

    Yes Su. Sanctioned killing. Nasty stuff. The Australian Navy is implicated as well. That’s sad. I lost two uncles in the Battle of the Coral Sea. They didn’t die for this sort of shit, I’m sure.

  271. mindy

    And yet time after time we manage to summon the resources to rescue some rich white twit trying to sail solo around the world.

    Beautifully said and depressingly true.

  272. Jacques de Molay

    a.v. @ 257,

    Thanks Alfred 🙂

  273. jules

    FDB its not utterly balmy to consider the difference between completely covering all of your skin or only covering the vast majority of it with mandated religious garb as almost non existent. They are basically the same thing.

    Seems obvious really.

  274. Chris

    And yet time after time we manage to summon the resources to rescue some rich white twit trying to sail solo around the world.

    Very true, if it was someone sailing around the world who called for help then there’d be no hesitation. But the boats policy since the Howard years has never been about saving lives – its always been about deterrence even if that’s at the cost of lives.

    Not being willing to even call local shipping to help seems a bit odd though – is there some obligation on the part of Australia to accept them for processing rather than being returned to Indonesia if Australia asks local shipping to rescue them rather than Indonesia doing the asking?

  275. Su

    Though I recall a distinct difference between the rescues of Tony Bullimore and Isabelle Autissier. With Bullimore it was all about the bravery and resilence of surviving in your upturned hull, in Autissiers’s case there was a distinct coolness and mutterings about the cost of rescuing these women who will insist on going to sea alone.

    I wouldn’t think that that would be the case, Chris, on a merchant vessel in international waters, but I’m not certain.

  276. alfred venison

    au cointreau. autissier copped bad reportage because she’s french. simplement. there is a low level of anti-french sentiment in this country i have noticed all my life here and she was subject to it. i’m sure an english woman in the same predicament would have gotten the bullimore style of reportage or at least somehthing more sympathetic than autissier got. it was her nationality more than her sex that got her the bad reportage in the gutter press here. -a.v.

  277. Katz

    In his snivelling, passive-aggressive way, John Howard in “Lazarus Rising” states that he still credits the veracity of Colin Powell’s report to the UN on iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.

    Howard states this position despite the fact that he notes that Powell himself repudiated this report as concocted with deliberate falsifications.

    Remarkably pragmatic of Howard, no?

    PS. Howard makes no reference to Saddam’s dreaded human shredding machines, despite having testified to their existence in his warmongering prior to the 2003 Iraq attack.

  278. Su

    No, a.v. as it happens a Frenchman, Thierry Du Bois, needed rescuing around the same time, not a word uttered in protest, and the cost of rescuing Autissier was less than the blokes.

    http://fulltext.ausport.gov.au/fulltext/1997/sportsf/sf970627.htm

  279. GregM

    Paul N are you suggesting berka’s are the first signs of an Islamic invasion that will lead to a genocide of up to 20 million Australians and the destruction of our culture in many places.

    Jules the danger is more pernicious. These modes of dress may catch on and then we’ll find women starting to dress like this:

    http://www.google.com.au/imgres?imgurl=http://images.smh.com.au/2009/04/03/450550/queen_headscarf_gallery__600x400-420×0.jpg&imgrefurl=http://naomipicks.blogspot.com/2013/04/4-in-1-hermes-scarf-galop-chromatique.html&h=280&w=420&sz=27&tbnid=kt4j21ARS9KrxM:&tbnh=80&tbnw=120&zoom=1&usg=__NBFCf26zrJ1HXjkXUYZBZaAfnqQ=&docid=Q0aqfaVmfg4zUM&sa=X&ei=POsmUu2TAYfGkQXHmoHgCA&ved=0CDMQ9QEwAQ&dur=4217

    and, before you know it, it may lead to this:
    http://iconicphotos.wordpress.com/2009/04/23/thatcher-in-a-tank/

    God forbid that happening!

  280. alfred venison

    Su, your article supports me too. look at how many references there are to differential treatment because of nationality. everyone interviewed says gender was only one factor and nationality prejudice was the another.

    Ross Solly: I’ve got no doubt that there is a gender issue involved to some extent; but I feel that it would be dangerous to just write it off as a gender problem.

    Chris Richards: Ellen Fanning agrees that in explaining the difference in the way the two rescues were covered, gender was only one factor. She presented ‘A.M.’s’ coverage of the Bullimore/du Bois rescue. Like Ross Solly and David Adams, Ellen Fanning says there’s a range of reasons why only Tony Bullimore was hailed as a hero. And all three say discrimination of a different sort was at play.

    Ross Solly: The media doesn’t seem to have the same empathy for people outside of other English-speaking nations, and especially Britain and the United States, and I think some of that drives the media, and perhaps colours the way they report issues.

    that is true & i wouldn’t say it “perhaps” colors their reporting i would say it is absolutely positively certain that anglo prejudice is at play here.

    i think the true test will come when an english yacht woman is trapped on a boat in the sea, and my feeling now is that simply by virtue of being english she will get the full stalwart woman hero(ine) against nature thing in the reporting of anglosphere media. -a.v.

  281. Su

    Both Solly and Fanning are commenting on reporting of which they were a part, and Fanning in particular shows a complete lack of awareness of the gendered nature of the whole, “good guy”, “great story” explanation she is pushing. Nobody was interested in Autissier’s backstory, that is part of the point, whether or not she was a “character”, nobody was interested in her or her deeds. I’m sure that cultural differences also play a part but having seen the lionization, regardless of cultural heritage, of male adventurers, mountaineers, scientists, etc, etc and the complete lack of interest in their female counterparts’ achievements (as distinct from their looks), I know that gender, which you are so keen to dismiss and the journos are so keen to minimize, is the more influential factor.

    I really wonder how, having witnessed what we have witnessed over the last three years, people can still pretend that there is little or no gender discrimination. Its absolutely normalized. Stuff like the whole ADFA debacle are not aberrations, isolated from the rest of our culture, they are visible manifestations of the mainstream. Boys don’t turn up at ADFA innocent of the ways in which to dominate and bastardize their female colleagues, they just find particularly fertile territory in which to operate, should that be their inclination.

  282. alfred venison

    Su, don’t presume on the basis of my comments on anglosphere narrow minded prejudice that i “pretend that there is little or no gender discrimination”. as you know autissier is lionised in france and much sought after by advertisers who advertise in french. there is no problem with her gender in the media in her country, the problem in my opinion is with narrow minded anglosphere prejudice. i disagree with you on the weighting of gender and nationality factors in this case but i know damn well there is gender discrimination. -a.v.

  283. Su

    autissier copped bad reportage because she’s french. simplement

    Yes, you weighted gender at zero, hence “dismiss”. Like Solly and Fanning, you have no explanation for the differential treatment of twoFrench nationals, both solo sailors, both requiring rescue at great expense.

    BTW, I’m partly stoushing with you cos this is the dedicated stoush thread and there had been a very regrettable rise in the tone and civility of comments here of late ; )

  284. Jacques de Molay

    Su @ 283,

    I’m sure that cultural differences also play a part but having seen the lionization, regardless of cultural heritage, of male adventurers, mountaineers, scientists, etc, etc and the complete lack of interest in their female counterparts’ achievements (as distinct from their looks), I know that gender, which you are so keen to dismiss and the journos are so keen to minimize, is the more influential factor.

    Have you forgotten Jessica Watson?

  285. Su

    Not at all, Jessica Watson received very different ftreatment to Jesse Martin, there was all sorts of reportage about her being too young, her parents irresponsible etc and when she returned a sniffy response from the body that records sailing achievements, I’ll dig out a reference to that if you would like. The fact that she blogged made a lot of difference, in that she proved how extraordinary her mental strength was, but she had to prove it to people, Jesse was just assumed to be capable, if he had failed or needed rescue, it would have been attributed to factors other than inherent unsuitability.

  286. Graham Bell

    Katz @279:
    Howard probably had more sense than to talk about any “human shredding machines”, as did the failed Emperor George II The Stupid and his courtiers, because he may have heard that meatworks throughout the world are usually equipped with fairly standard end-of-process meat shredding machines (hoggers); they’re one reason your blood&bone garden fertilizer isn’t lumpy and stinky.

    a.v. & Su:
    Have never ever heard any anti-French attitudes at all among boagans; suggest that if any such exists, it is restricted to moribund elite circles.

  287. Chris

    Not at all, Jessica Watson received very different ftreatment to Jesse Martin, there was all sorts of reportage about her being too young, her parents irresponsible etc and when she returned a sniffy response from the body that records sailing achievements, I’ll dig out a reference to that if you would like

    Didn’t Jessica Watson have a collision with a tanker just before she set off on her round the world trip and that’s what triggered a lot of the criticism?

    btw IIRC the world sailing body doesn’t recognise achievements for anyone under 18 now because they’re trying to avoid attempts by younger and younger people.

  288. Jacques de Molay

    Su, I just remember the rockstar arrival she received (including by the PM) combined with the media turning her into a celebrity so much so the Libs tried to recruit her which is why I thought your black & white 283 was a bit off.

  289. FDB

    FDB its not utterly balmy [sic] to consider the difference between completely covering all of your skin or only covering the vast majority of it with mandated religious garb as almost non existent. They are basically the same thing.

    Seems obvious really.

    The difference is not having a chance to recognise a person Jules. If a person can’t be recognised by others, then in a major way they are not a real member of the public. I was doing tech work for a weekend-long Islamic event a year or so back, and overheard two headscarf-wearing women who were getting ready to give speeches referring to a small clutch of niqab-wearing women nearby as “ghosts”.

    Anyway, re nuns: even if it did completely conceal their identity, “mandated religious garb” for nuns – who choose to devote themselves to their religion rather than living a “normal” life – is a uniform that comes with the territory as a religious devotee.

    If you can’t see any qualitative difference between that and being obliged to wear something which obscures your very identity, purely because of your gender, on pain of being cast out from your family and community, then I don’t know what to say to you.

  290. FDB

    the difference between completely covering all of your skin or only covering the vast majority of it

    And what if I cover everything but my cock and balls? How robust is your Quantity Theory of Clothing under close examination?

  291. jules

    Jessica Watson returns 26 m hits on google, jesse martin 91m.

    On one of them, a Punch piece on the public response to her achievement:

    Pete of The Office wrote to The Courier-Mail: “A great achievement and well done, but certainly not a hero. We would all be singing a different tune if we had to be spending $5 million for her rescue.”

    Then there’s this:

    Old Seafarer doubted she would be able to handle all the attention, writing on ABC Online: “In six months the world will have forgotten about Jessica Watson, and she’ll most likely have gone back to sea to get away from what she has created. A 16 year-old male would be lucky to get a tenth of the attention.

    Tho i seem to remember Bullimore copping a fair bit of shit for wasting our money and endangering our defence force personnel.

  292. jules

    If you can’t see any qualitative difference between that and being obliged to wear something which obscures your very identity, purely because of your gender, on pain of being cast out from your family and community, then I don’t know what to say to you.

    Look thats a fair point, but only if its true, and you’re telling me everyone wearing those things is in that position. Everyone? – prove it.

    Also it is a bit of an assumption regarding nuns. I grew up in a catholic culture in 70s Tasmania and back then there were people talking about girls who were pressured into religious orders. Tassie was always behind the rest of the country but I always used to wonder about older nuns and whether they really joined out of devotion. The ones I used to wonder about would be in the 80s, 90s or older if they are still around.

    The difference is not having a chance to recognise a person Jules.

    Its not your inalienable right to be able to recognise me or anyone else. It may be a reasonable expectation in some circumstances but thats about it. What are you gonna do next, ban hoodies or beanies with sunglasses?

  293. jules

    Would anyone notice if you left your bits out FDB.

  294. FDB

    “Look thats a fair point, but only if its true, and you’re telling me everyone wearing those things is in that position. Everyone? – prove it.”

    Cripes! Now you’re touting a Quantity Theory of Morality?

    If Anyone, Anywhere, is coerced into clothing themselves so as to conceal their identity for Any Reason it is a Very Bad Thing. Clear enough for you?

    I guess I need once again to reiterate that I don’t think it should be outlawed, which should take care of your suggestion that if I object to women being coerced into hiding their faces I must also want to ban the entirely voluntary wearing of sunglasses.

    Anything else?

  295. FDB

    Would anyone notice if you left your bits out FDB.

    I guess you missed my “close examination” gag.

    Oh well, pearls before swine…

  296. Chris

    Jessica Watson returns 26 m hits on google, jesse martin 91m.

    Dodgiest metric evah 🙂

    I reckon in Australia she would have higher name recognition than him, though that’s probably got more to do with her voyage being more recent than any bias. And she did end up with the Young Australian of the Year award, whereas he had to settle for the Young Victorian of the Year. But its always pretty hard to compare treatment of two cases separated by a significant period of time.

  297. Su

    Jules, you’re crossing the streams! oh well, one in etc.

    And what if I cover everything but my cock and balls?

    Do you have particularly expressive cock and balls, FDB? Look those nuns took the earliest possible opportunity after Vatican II to modernize their dress, and from what I’ve read, the Vatican is trying to discipline the US nuns in particular, trying to roll back some of their freedom from church hierarchical control, wrested since the second council. It seems to me that the habit was definitely seen as a symbol of that control, even though they exposed a small wedge of the face. It wasn’t just an accepted uniform. Against that was the habit as symbol of resistence to sectarian bigotry, as per Dr S’s link. Thinking of purdah, the practice of shutting inconvenient women away in convents, even if they never assumed the habit, was not dissimilar.

    Your anecdote leaves out what those women in niqab would have said in reply, and that is partly the point, they seem so often to be relegated to being mute objects of others’ views, even when they publish their own.

  298. jules

    So if one person somewhere is coerced into clothing, everyone everywhere wearing the same gear is coerced by … osmosis or something? Also – how do you know the people that are concerning you by wearing what you assume they have been forced to wear were forced to wear it?

    Have you asked them?

    If not you’re making the same sort of stupid assumptions that people make when they say all black people are thieves, all women are hysterical and all drummers are thick as two planks.

    Private school students are coerced into wearing school uniforms (by their parents and the school), is that the same thing? If not why not? Cos you can see their face?

    Anyway you said someone’s opinion was insane or frothy cos they didn’t think covering most of someones face was that different to covering all of it. They said that as far as they are concerned the two things are similar enough that the differences you pointed out don’t matter in by comparison. You responded by calling them insane or bubbly.

    Did it ever occur to you that baseless ridicule is the one of the tactics the people who oppress women in fundy cultures (of all varieties) use?

  299. FDB

    So if one person somewhere is coerced into clothing, everyone everywhere wearing the same gear is coerced by … osmosis or something?

    No. I have never even suggested anything remotely like that.

    Also – how do you know the people that are concerning you by wearing what you assume they have been forced to wear were forced to wear it?

    I don’t. All I know is that their garb is designed to conceal their identity, and diminish their humanity, and that makes me feel bad.

    “Anyway you said someone’s opinion was insane or frothy cos they didn’t think covering most of someones face was that different to covering all of it. They said that as far as they are concerned the two things are similar enough that the differences you pointed out don’t matter in by comparison. You responded by calling them insane or bubbly.”

    No I didn’t. I said Dr S was espousing a barmy opinion. There is, as I understand it, a bright line here between commenting on opinions and on the holders of those opinions, and I intend to do my best to keep on the right side of it.

  300. alfred venison

    Su (285) touché, consider it an ambit claim, based on a “vibe”. 😉 i should not have been so dogmatic. my feeling remains that if autissier had been an english or english speaking elite sportswoman needing sea rescue there would have been no such questions asked and the treatment of the story would have been vastly different.

    the anglosphere works by celebrating its own and denigrating the other.

    had media been confronted with an english version of autissier they would have found it convenient, i.e. profitable, to be feminist – our own elite solo sportswoman in distress (more inside)!!! they would have run story after story in papers, glossy mags and t.v. extolling her for her rugged determination, skill and stamina. they would have found her parents in penzance or wherever and profiled them. her school in surrey or wherever. the man or woman who designed her keel. they would have fed on her story, they would have exploited her story to move product, for months.

    they would have done that for an english woman but autissier being french they calculated they could move sufficient product to a (francophobically conditioned) anglo audience by denigrating her for the cost of her rescue. you don’t move product in anglosphere by telling stories about a french woman’s courage and skill. you move product in anglosphere by telling stories about a dastardly french woman’s mooching.

    what is common between autissier and donelli and the other frenchman whose name ellen fanning doesn’t remember (no criticism) is that they were not pulled in at the same time as bullimore. bullimore is the prize and the only one anglosphere media really care about. dubois gets to stay in the frame, not so much because he’s a man, and despite being a french man, only because of his proximity to bullimer. the media could not denigrate him or drop him from the reportage/frame without cheapening the bullimore brand it was developing to move product with. dubois got as it were collateral protection in the anglosphere media by virtue of his proximity to bullimer. autissier got slammed, and the other frenchmen got dropped from the media stream with barely a trace, because they were not anglo and were no where near bullimer when he was pulled in. imo. yrs civilly, a.v.

  301. FDB

    Do you have particularly expressive cock and balls, FDB?

    This information is available on a strictly need-to-know basis.

    Look those nuns took the earliest possible opportunity after Vatican II to modernize their dress, and from what I’ve read, the Vatican is trying to discipline the US nuns in particular, trying to roll back some of their freedom from church hierarchical control, wrested since the second council. It seems to me that the habit was definitely seen as a symbol of that control, even though they exposed a small wedge of the face. It wasn’t just an accepted uniform. Against that was the habit as symbol of resistence to sectarian bigotry, as per Dr S’s link. Thinking of purdah, the practice of shutting inconvenient women away in convents, even if they never assumed the habit, was not dissimilar.

    Hey, I’m not arguing that nuns have been well treated by the Vatican. Or that religious orders have never been used as a means of control (for “inconvenient” women, gay men, etc etc). I’m trying (I thought pretty clearly) to distinguish between that and a mode of dress imposed on someone in order to merely be a member of their family of community.

    Your anecdote leaves out what those women in niqab would have said in reply, and that is partly the point, they seem so often to be relegated to being mute objects of others’ views, even when they publish their own.

    Actually that was entirely my point, not partly. Modestly-dressed Islamic women, at an event celebrating the togetherness of the local Islamic community, seemed to have no way of relating to them and thought of them as ghosts. But of course it is only an anecdote, I grant you that.

  302. jules

    Chris – Yeah I know. Very dodgy.

    I don’t remember any criticism of Jess Martin. Tho someone did a series of skits about the real story – that his stupid mate who accidentally stowed away on the boat and did the whole trip with him. And Thorpey won Young Australian of the Year the year Jess Martin was eligible.

    Jess Watson copped heaps tho. Admittedly the collison with a ship was a bad start to the whole thing. But once she’d done it Jess Watson still copped shit like this. That writer mentioned Bullimore, and even fake-compared her to him but didn’t mention Jess Martin once. Its an amazing article, just not in a good way.

  303. jules

    FDB- Dood you commented on Dr S’ opinions by describing them as barmy. Which is defined as frothy bublly airy or as insane. Throughout history women’s opinions have been ignored or belittled in exactly that way, and you’re doing it cos you object to how someone else oppresses and belittles women. (Until this thread i thought mansplaining was a bit of a croc, but its been a revelation.)

    But you’re right. You didn’t call Dr S barmy, (just her opinion.) I shouldn’t have said you did. I’m Sorry.

  304. Chris

    Jess Watson copped heaps tho. Admittedly the collison with a ship was a bad start to the whole thing.

    Yes I guess the unanswerable question is if Jesse Martin had also run into tanker (according to Wikipedia the official report said that she did not see the tanker on the radar before going to asleep and although the tanker did see her was unable to avoid the collision) would he have been criticised as strongly.

    But once she’d done it Jess Watson still copped shit like this. That writer mentioned Bullimore, and even fake-compared her to him but didn’t mention Jess Martin once. Its an amazing article, just not in a good way.

    He was pretty critical of Bullimore.

    For all the hype, Watson’s journey is just another variation on the same tired buccaneering that saw Tony Bullimore pulled from the sea in 1997. At the time, Bullimore was the subject of enormous public opprobrium for what was deemed his irresponsibility and the heavy burden placed on Australian taxpayers..

    I guess he has a very different recollection of how Bullimore was treated than people here.

  305. FDB

    Jules, I’m not alone in suggesting that a person’s eyes show more of their identity, personality and feelings than any other body part. I also don’t think I’m going out on a limb to say that for a person to be identifiable, and for their personality and feelings to be accessible to their fellow human beings, is a Good Thing.

    Do you disagree?

    That is the basis of my disagreement with Dr S. I don’t resile from describing her opinion – that clothing which leaves the eyes visible is no different to its opposite – as barmy. It’s a pretty mild term… more or less equivalent to eccentric.

    What would you prefer?

  306. Su

    I’m trying (I thought pretty clearly) to distinguish between that and a mode of dress imposed on someone in order to merely be a member of their family of community.

    That would include the hijab and the various forms of covering required by orthodox jews, but you make a special case for forms of dress that limit your ability to identify the wearer, whether they are coerced or not, isn’t that the case? That’s the only point of difference, we all agree about coercion.

    You believe your value judgements about dehumanisation apply, regardless of how the wearer herself feels about her dress. But that denial of her ability to make her own meaning is itself a dehumanizing response. There seems to be some slippage back and forth between your ability to identify them, and their ability to interact as full members of their community, but those things are not the same and the best judges of the second condition are the women themselves.

  307. Brian

    There was a problem with Jessica Watson’s record other than age. Apparently she didn’t sail far enough. Obviously if you go south and circumnavigate Antarctica it’s a lot shorter than if you cross the equator along the way. The orthodromic distance travelled needs to be equal to the circumference of the globe. She crossed the equator twice but came up a bit short.

    I gather orthodromic means the shortest line between two points, so any weather evasion, side-journeys or tacking would show up in her log, but doesn’t get her there.

  308. FDB

    Su.

    Unless I’m mistaken we are talking about women who, merely because they are women, are obliged to conceal their identity in a particular way by a particular set of norms.

    Women (or men) who make their own choice to conceal their identity are in a different category. One which includes all manner of wacky getups.

    You seem to want to invoke the voice of the woman behind the burqa. To celebrate her ability to “make her own meaning”, when things are ostensibly stacked against her. Well, that’s an interesting idea, but one which flies directly in the face ( if you’ll pardon the pun) of what is actually happening. A woman being hidden. A woman being shut off from the world.

  309. drsusancalvin

    @307 FDB

    I don’t resile from describing her opinion – that clothing which leaves the eyes visible is no different to its opposite – as barmy.

    When in fact, what I actually wrote was…

    The burqa is so close to the full length habits that only exposed the small “circle” of the eyebrows, cheeks and chin…

    I wrote “so close” and you read “no different”. If you want to call my opinion “barmy” you might at least pay attention to it.

  310. drsusancalvin

    oops…would someone please correct that block quote for me… thank you.

    [Done]

  311. alfred venison

    actually that should be “no different than“. i was schooled by nuns during the vatican 2 period and when i see a burqa i’m reminded of how different the nun’s habits were because you could see their faces. -a.v.

  312. Helen

    [email protected]: But people who do this *in Australia* are analagous to, how would you put it, lay religious. This is the same as the Jewish women in Melbourne who won’t show their hair (wear wigs) and wear ankle length skirts all the time, which must also be a right pain in the arse especially in summer. Not as bad as wearing a burqua, but still a pain.
    The point is that very religious people do exist. I wouldn’t expect a hip young(ish) sound engineer from inner Melbourne to have much in common with them, but that is their life. If someone is being forced to do so by their family, then we can invoke domestic violence laws. We do have those, and it appears from this year’s news reports that police and courts are even starting to take DV seriously, so that is an excellent start.
    But apart from that, what would you want to do? Criminalise the wearer?

  313. drsusancalvin

    av the nuns who schooled you are possibly spinning in their graves over your exclusive use of the lower case. According to OED different than/from/to is a British/American thing. Your preference is cited as the American version.

  314. alfred venison

    naaah, they were liberal nuns, they got the black south african guy from the edmonton football team to come in and talk to us about apartheid.

    i work for the man in precise mixed case all day, i work for myself in lower case the rest of the time. its easier in candlelight & its a kind of hommage to e.e. cummings. i the “&” from wm. blake.

    so its a usage thang, ok, i concede, no worries, like when you say “railway” & i say “railroad”, ‘cause you can railroad a bad guy out of town, but you can’t railway him out of town. 😉

    anyway, we shd probably move to the successor thread. -alfred comrade venison

  315. jules

    FDB I think its their decision. You’re assuming it isn’t their decision – but how do you know?

    I’m not willing to assume all Muslim women who wear the berka are forced to avoid that. Some people are prudish, they may feel wearing a berka is an appropriate response to a hyper sexualised secular society. Can you say they don’t? If individuals are being coerced in Australia there is more scope to escape that situation than elsewhere. Berka bashing may encourage people who would otherwise wish to escape that situation to stay.

    I’m not saying you’re discomfort is unacceptable or wrong, its undeniable that berkas are associated with oppresson – I just don’t think its a 100% proof of it either. If there is one person on earth who wears one out of choice then its not always oppressive.

    But

    You’re a guy describing a woman’s opinion as utterly barmy (- eccentric, crazy, insane, frothy, bubbly, filled with air, etc etc -) in a discussion where she is describing what women wear from her pov. In the context of you objecting to some womens clothes cos they are being oppressed by them.

    Think about that.

  316. FDB

    Sigh. Susan, I have described your opinion so many times now, and you pick out the one and only time I’ve exaggerated it?

    Your thesis seems to be that it is inconsistent to find a burqa more confronting than a nun’s getup. I have explained why I feel there is an important difference, which in turn explains the difference in response.

    Do you have anything to say about that in return? Something which demonstrates that you’ve done more than scan my argument for something easy to object to?

  317. Chris

    But apart from that, what would you want to do? Criminalise the wearer?

    If you read back you’ll see that FDB has said explicitly that’s not what he doesn’t want that. Abbott also said that criminalisation is not what he wants.

    I won’t try to speak for FDB, but there are plenty of alternatives to criminalisation. There’s lots of things in society that members of the society disapprove of and yet don’t criminalise. At one end of the spectrum is simply talking about it and discussing the what people think are the drawbacks to society as a whole. At the other end just before criminalising would probably be to allow organisations who employ people to enforce dress codes (must be able to see the face would be an example) without being exposed to religious discrimination laws.