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Showing posts from February, 2017

The Bureaucratic Nightmare at the University of Sydney

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Call centres, waits to get through, queues, byzantine rules, very little appeals process and no hope of actually speaking to a real person, certainly not a person who can solve your issue. Centrelink? No, it's Australia's oldest and most venerable institute of higher learning, the University of Sydney. 
The University of Sydney has gleefully embraced the centralised customer service and efficiency plague which has swept across public agencies worldwide. The university no longer sees us as students, but as clients. In the media, students with queries and appeals actually get to go speak to someone in charge of their faculty. No such luxuries at the University of Sydney. All student enquiries are now directed through a central student enquiries centre, where you take a number relating to your enquiry and wait for it to flash on the overhead screens - they use the same exact numbering system as Service NSW (RTA), right down to the weird noises, which left me with a knot of recog…

Russian Princesses School the Brady Bunch and Anti-Vaxxers

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Those gosh darn anti-vaxxers will cast their nets far and wide looking for evidence to back up their claims of vaccines being dangerous and unnecessary. The false claims of danger have been covered extensively in the media, but anti-vaxxers state that along with vaccines being full of toxins, heavy metals and the ground up embryos of the cutest baby chickens you can imagine, that we don't even need them. Their argument is that most of the diseases we vaccinate against today were once just normal childhood illnesses, a right of childhood passage that would cause most kids to feel a bit yuck for a few days until they recovered, no harm done and lifelong, natural immunity confirmed.

And as proof of this, they cite the Brady Bunch. Anti-vaxxers are linking to this episode of the Brady Bunch to prove that until recent hysteria, measles was no big deal.


Look at this episode of the Brady Bunch, where the Brady kids, all had the measles and all got over it, that's how it was in those …

Pauline Hanson, Proud Australian Parasite

A couple of months back, I wrote a blog post about how the Australian alt-right, in their rush to venerate Trump, were betraying the Australians lost on MH-17, shot down with who-knows-what involvement by Trump's Dear Friend Putin, who refuses to allow proper investigation of the massacre. What did he do? What does he know?

So I thought that was as far as they could sink. I am of course wrong.

 Pauline Hanson, arguably a figurehead of the Australian racist right, has come out in support of Vladimir Putin, a "strong leader", whose homophobic, racist, anti-dissident policies are presumably just what she wants for Australia.

And what of MH-17? The plane that was shot down by Russian missiles. Big missiles. Not the sort left lying around. Not the sort you can have a casual go at. The sort of high grade military equipment that is heavily guarded, requires extensive training to use. The sort of missiles a group of rogue fighters couldn't just help themselves to and try ou…

Celebrating Australia's Break Up With America

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You can love someone for so long. Be there to support them through thick and thin. Maybe you weren't always so close. Maybe you knew they didn't think about you nearly as much as you thought about them. But you were, you know, a partnership; you knew it, the world knew it, and you knew they'd always have your back. We were the wind beneath their wings, the Garfunkel to their Simon, the Buzz Aldrin to their Neil Armstrong, the Marge to their Homer.

And then they let you down, in an unimaginably public and humiliating way. They invite the person they'd been having an affair with to your dinner party, and you realise everyone knew. They gamble away your entire savings, and you don't realise until the sheriff arrives to repossess your house. Or maybe, in what was always going to be basically a public phone call to reestablish and strengthen your bond, they crack the shits at you and hang up.

Now, you can sob and eat a tonne of ice cream then lawyer up, delete Facebook …