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Showing posts from March, 2017

Why I regret breastfeeding my son

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If you're pregnant or a new mother, you can hardly miss the incessant message that "breast is best"; between "baby friendly" hospitals, medical advice and the ubiquitous parent forums and social media, the pressure to breastfeed can be overwhelming. Given how the breastfeeding message is pushed down our throats, what mother would do it for sixteen months - then wish she hadn't? This mother. I breastfed for over a year, and looking back now, I wish didn't bother.


 When I was expecting my long-awaited first child, I was determined that I was going to breastfeed. I followed all the advice, such as not having bottles or even dummies in the house; anything that might impede establishing breastfeeding. I went to classes run by the hospital. I’ve got this, I thought; I’ve followed all the advice, I really want it.

 The first trouble we ran into was when I was eleven days overdue and an attempt at induction failed. After it was decided I would have a caesarean …

New Blogger Templates

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I've been on Blogger since - whew - January 2004, so long ago I was at least three or four years younger than I am now. The service had only just been bought out by Google, was still widely known as blog spot, and was so basic at the time it lacked a user interface for template design - you had to do so in HTML - and you had to use a third party service for comments. In May of that year, Google launched a major redesign, with lots of improvements to user functionality including comments and the ability to post by email. Further updates followed in 2006, including a WYSIWYG template editor.

And then that was pretty much it. Apart from some minor updates of functionality, Google has pretty much ignored Blogger since then. Whilst they haven't gone so far as to shelve the thing all together, like the much missed iGoogle, it's been abandoned so long, here are the up to the minute options for comment log in:



If that was anymore of a throwback, it'd be using a Razr and playin…

Want sympathy? You'd better be perfect then

There's a strange and awful trend, in Australia at least, when we see people going through a hard time in the media: what seems an insatiable desire to rip them to shreds for any perceived lack of purity in their victimhood.

This week, Australian actress Melissa George went public with her account of how she suffered domestic abuse at the hands of her former partner. Now, Ms George has a somewhat spotty relationship with the Australian media, with ill-advised comments she made a few years back complaining Australians were fixated on her turn two decades ago as a teenage soap star, making it too stressful to come home when she could live a much more exciting life in New York or Paris. There was a predictable backlash at the time - I wrote myself about how petty her claims of distress seemed - but this is different. There's nothing, certainly not being a bit of a snob, that causes a person to deserve abuse; surely we would overlook Ms George's comments of the past and extend…

Criminalising abortion hurts women who don't want one, too

The media has leapt on the story of "Miss X", the woman who became pregnant after a brief relationship with NRL player Bryce Cartwright, and was allegedly paid $50,000 to pressure her into having an abortion. No matter what your stance on a woman's right to choose, it must be a terribly difficult situation for the woman involved. Of course, the usual suspects of the "pro life" brigade have jumped on the story, eager to use it to push their line that abortion harms women and must be stopped. Now, I actually happen to agree with Ms Devine here; no woman should have to suffer this, being pressured into having an abortion she doesn't want. But criminalising abortion means there's no way to prevent it.

As with the legal status of abortion itself in NSW - with abortion still being technically a crime - women who are coerced, bullied or threatened into having an abortion against their wishes are in a grey area. The aforementioned pro-life campaigners use their…

Bill Leak and Speaking of the Dead

Cartoonist for the Australian, Bill Leak, died suddenly yesterday, and in death as in life, he was a divisive figure. Leak was best known for his output of disgusting cartoons targeting whoever caught the fancy of his bile - he was particularly fond of directing his vile scribblings on Aboriginal people, the LGBTQ community and Muslims - which I won't link to here and which he continued to churn out within hours of his death.
But of course, everyone's a top bloke after death; and with Leak's passing, the usual chorus of banal reminiscence has swung into action Whilst some sections of the commetariat are valorising him as a beacon, even a martyr, of free speech, others in the media who really should know better are carefully stepping aside his legacy of spite by using the c word:
People who pay their mortgages by writing words and think "controversial" is a synonym for "racist" — Ingrid M (@iMusing) March 11, 2017
They are insisting that the people Lea…

The Vacuous Millennial Right Rebellion

With the recent, inevitable downfall of Milo Yiannopoulos - self proclaimed “dangerous faggot” who, after the doxxing, baiting racist online attacks, sexism, and (self-hating) homophobia finally had the brakes put on the hate train after comments he made implying that he condones sex between older men and young boys, leading to the loss of his book deal with Simon and Schuster, the rescinding of the invitation for him to speak at CPAC, and his apparent jump-before-you’re-pushed resignation from the platform that brought him prominence, Breitbart - are we seeing the merciful beginning of the end of the self proclaimed Millennial alt right?

 Milo was the consummate poster boy for this puddle of spit-up parading itself as a political movement. He was the attractive-on-the-surface face of an ugly reality; that the alt right is all style and no substance. They place themselves as the new rebels, the new cool; conservative is the new black. But what are they rebelling against? They haven&#…