Saturday, July 2, 2011

The simple answer to the question of gay marriage, and Typo's bad date.

First up, this week's Moment of Deep Contemplation came, from of all places, the Savvy section of the Daily Astonisher, which, while wittering on about the latest fashion in slacks,   offered this startling advice 
'But surprisingly, if you fit the right voluminous slacks to your body shape, pretty much anyone can pull them off.'
And no doubt will, after a heady Friday night down on Flinders Street East. Nothing like ease of operation that bypasses all those fiddly zips, hooks and buttons and other impedimentia to a good time. In The `Pie's day, this apparent dropping of the tweeds was known as a 'pantsing'. Nice to see the old traditions coming back, with the added attraction of a fast draw on the drawers if the gals are caught short down on Via Vomitorium after the 3am lock-out.
In other matters this week, gay marriage is in the news again (yawn), with The Big Apple making it legal, but we have a revolutionary solution to put this tedious saga to rest. We also have a couple of other matters concerning The Astonisher, including  praise - yes! praise, and we ain't talkin' mayonnaise here, brothers! - for some genuinely outstanding reporting, and The `Pie exclusively reveals a rare honour for Typo; he joins a small but select club of newspaper editors, a club that meets on the eighth Tuesday of every month.
So suspend your disbelief and be The Magpie's guest in this week's nest.

So New York has voted to allow gay marriage, a fact that The Magpie finds a bit ho hum in this day and age but it does offer the opportunity to trot out a couple of good observations that others have made on the subject.
The`Pie's favourite is from the muscian/novelist Kinky Friedman, (founder of the courageously named group The Texas Jewboys) who was all for wedlock equality, reasoning  "Why shouldn't gays be allowed to be as miserable as everybody else?" 
Then there was Paul Keating, who knocked the idea of gay marriage on the head when he was Prime Minister when he said 'Two jokers and a cocker spaniel do not a family make'. This was a bit rich from a bloke who is widely rumoured to have swerved over to the other side of the road after his divorce and, to pinch writer Tony Wright's line about Don Dunstan, 'was regularly busier than a fiddler's elbow - and a good deal more diverse - at the merrier edges of extra-curricular activities'.
The Magpie is firmly of the belief that it is none of his business, nor anyone else's - especially government - if Adam and Steve, or Brunhilde and Mary, want to (metaphorically) tie the knot. 
The main opposition to this basic freedom is based on misinterpreted and out-moded religious beliefs.
But hang on a sec, here's a rare moment of clarity for The `Pie - therein could lie the answer to the gay community's persecution in the marriage stakes.
The Magpie quite seriously suggests that the gay movement should become a religion, of which one of the tenet's is that life-time union can only be between people of the same sex. 
Such a religion would enjoy the legal protections offered under the freedom to worship provisions, not to mention the tax breaks. 
Look, if it is good enough for happy clappers to go about alarming the general populace by jumping up and down in the streets dressed in orange bedsheets, Hindus to worship cattle, Muslims to cover the face of their womenfolk (possibly a blessing of which we are unaware)  and Christians of all stripes -  catholics, protestants and especially tele-evangilists in the southern states of the USA - to frequently have chats with imaginary friends while seeking redemption and money, why can't gays create their own religion, and make their own rules? 

Look what it did for those dingbat twicers the Scientologists, an invented religion of which the sole aim was a lucrative power trip for a small elite preying on the gullible and vulnerable. 
If legislative protection applies to outfits like the Church of Scientology, why shouldn't such protection not apply to a Church of Homosexuality? Which, like all the other churches in the world, would create it's own morality and its own mythology? And at least - one assumes - it wouldn't aim at victimising its adherents, but empower them. 
With the bonus of some lovely sparkle-arkle outfits for Sunday wear.
There ya go, problem solved, pink daiquiris all round.
Back on the local scene, rather than pink drinks it was red faces in the last week down in Ogden Street.
But first, a big positive for The Daily Astonisher in the excellent series of reports by Kath Skene on the indigenous rorts and nepotism in indigenous organisations in Townsville. This is award winning stuff - even up to and including a Walkley - because Ms Skene has led by example in following the definition of a journalist's job as being to shine a light into dark corners.
And in this case, it is not only the dogged following of an obstacle course created by the rorters with plenty to hide, but the manner is which it has been reported. Straight plain English, nary an adjective in sight, and the facts simply allowed to speak for themselves. Ms Skene's manner of writing in this way has a far more devastating impact on the reader (and the subject) than all the over-dressed twaddle others at the paper are encouraged, indeed ordered, to submit. At least those higher up the editorial chain have had the good rare sense to allow, for once, the unvarnished facts to speak for themselves.
The indigenous rorts story is far from over, but the running narrative so far ranks alongside such award winning efforts as Tony Raggatt's nationwide lead on the Storm Financial debacle. And it too could, by a domino effect, become a national story.
Such efforts deserve the support and performance at the highest levels of editorial and overall management, where decisions affecting the credibility of the paper are made.

But alas, what did we get last weekend, which incidentally, was 25-26 of JUNE.

There is an old saying in newspapers: if you can't get the publication date right on the front page (or any page for that matter), why should readers believe anything else in the paper? Typos in headlines don't help either.

When editor Peter Typo Gleeson finally gets to leave us in peace, (head office's evaluation is continuing) perhaps he should be presented with the traditional gold watch. But it had better be a Rolex day/date - at least then he won't have an excuse for not knowing what day it is.

But it's a fair bet general manager Shrek Wilkins isn't bothered by all this, in fact maybe he's quietly satisfied. 

Make no mistake, there are plenty of first rate subs in the Ogden Street bunker, but they are increasingly piled up with more and more work to be done by fewer and fewer people. Departures in their ranks aren't replaced, or certainly not at the same skill and financial level, the pressure keeps mounting and errors are more likely to happen. It is a great corporate finger to this community, and will give Shrek the trigger he is just waiting for, to sack the 20 or so sub-editors and move their work down to the sub-hub in Brisbane.  From where the Townsville Bulletin will be put together. 

Sadly for Townsville, and many of The Magpie's former colleagues, this money-grubbing exercise seems sure to happen within a year, no matter what. It's long been a done deal by the bean counters, and is the whole reason why someone as senior as Shrek in News Ltd's executive ranks was sent to Townsville in the first place. 

And the moment it becomes mission accomplished, Shrek will no doubt scuttle back south, taking his trusty hatchet with him. And we will be left with The South's Own Paper. 

If you think this is far fetched, read Bruce Guthrie's book Man Bites Murdoch, and then you'll have a greater insight into the scheming, lying and treachery that goes on in order to seek advancement by brown-nosing Rupert, who has dumbed down world media in the name of mammon.

The News Ltd HQ in Holt Street, Sydney, has been dubbed in the industry as Toady Hall. 

So don't think here in lil ol' Townsville that the barbarians are at the gates - they're already here amongest us. And they've changed the locks from the inside. 

Enough now, it is away to Poseurs' Bar for a much-needed drink where The Magpie will seek out some bubbly companion who  is decked out in voluminous slacks fitted to her body shape. Should the old bird be asked what is his role in life, he will happily report that he is a removalist heh-heh-heh. 

(The Nest's bent cartoonist Bentley, seems to think it is more likely the other way around!)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks you for another weekly update especially on the Daily Astonisher.

    Feel I spied yet another typo in the offering yesterday on page numero uno (did I say offering, I had to pay for the thing after all. I have since dispensed with it, being of somewhat sound mind) They talked of “principle” place of residence instead of principal. Seems they are not well acquainted with principles of any sort in the Astonisher.

    Keep up the very good work standing up for the North and pointing out the glaring gaffs of Cuddlepie.
    I find it sad when he says he will fight for North Queensland when he is a Minister in this inept crew that he should be helping to lead (Cuddlepie lead??). He should do better in the first place and not need to pick up the pieces of the many train wrecks they have orchestrated. Health, roads, bulk water prices, loss of northern SunWater jobs to Brisbane etc.etc.