HONI SOIT Issue 23 OCT 12th 2011
Issue 24 OCT 19th 2011
WHAT’S HAPPENING THIS WEEK: The Art Gallery of NSW has been hosting WEIMAR TO HOLLYWOOD FILM SERIES, and today is screening Scarlet Street, a psychological noir film directed by the masterful Fritz Lang. Lang, who escaped Nazi Germany, has an unmistakably dark tone, and Scarlet Street is a fascinating look at temptation and sin.
The Wh at’s On section. If you don’t k now what’s on then you haven’t been re ading this sec tion.
Catch Sydney Theatre Company’s hilarious production of LOOT 8pm this week before it closes. Set in spirited and wild 1960s London, the farce is receiving rave reviews, so get in quick. Drama Theatre, Opera House. Tix from $35.
7.30pm Grab the chucklebuckets and head to THEATRESPORTS
GRAND FINAL! It’s one of the best nights on the Manning Bar Calendar and it’s absolutely free. Get on that.
PlayStation 3 is celebrating the launch of DANCE STAR TM PARTY by holding a danceoff in the city. All you have to do is show up, learn some moves and strut your stuff. The winner will win a prize to the US to watch “So You Think You Can Dance” Rego is free, you just have to send your deets to DanceStarParty@hausmann.com.au. First Fleet Park.
JAMIE KILSTEIN, the anarchist/comic/high school dropout/ radio star/leftie is returing to Manning Bar to deliver his brand of straight up social commentary. He’s great. The show sold out last • year at Manning so book now! Tix from $5/10/15 + BF.
8pm You’re the voice try and understand it, make a noise and make it clear, oooooooooohhhhh oh oh oh oh oh ohhhhhhhhh, ohhhhhhhhhhh. In other words, John Farhnam is playing at the State Theatre.
Wond e on F ring wha riday t to do ? Me .
Culture vultures, this one’s for you. It’s the final SUSO CONCERT for the year (that’s Sydney Uni Symphony Orchestra for those playing at home)! Theyre tackling the Viennese masters - Strauss, Mozart, Schubert ... sublime. Great Hall, tix from $10. All day THE XTREME SIMULATION EXPO (yes, really) is on this
weekend at Luna Park. Showcasing the very best and latest in rail, sports, car, flight, naval and combat, you’re sure to feel like an action star. XTREME!
Do something good for your soul. BREAKFAST ON BONDI, part of the Crave Sydney International Food Festival is a BYO breakfast on the sandy shores of good old Bonid. You can pick up something delicious from one of the many cafes around, but Honi recommends grabbing a bunch of friends for a picnic brekkie. Bill Granger is hosting, there’ll be music and entertainment to keep you awake. Delightful.
We’re all students, and students love beer, right? So ALL WEEK you’re sure to love SYDNEY CRAFT BEER WEEK. The week will celebrate beer with a collection of tastings, workshops, a medieval feast, a comedy and trivia night, a Q & Ales and much more. Bookings essential. Check www.sydneycraftbeerweek.com for dates and times.
It’s the final week of MUSE’s season of INTO THE WOODS AND HMS PINAFORE, so support our thespians in the last major productions of the USyd year.
all day TUESDAY BLUESDAY. Hit the road, Jack.
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THE LOVECHILD Larry David Salma Hayek
RETRACTION We’d like to apologise ... no, wait. We’d like you to apologise this time. All this year we’ve been apologising, and what do we get for it? Nothing! Maybe this time you’ll find the breath to speak before you realise just what you’re walking away from! BOOM OUT!
ACTUAL RETRACTION Last week we implied that all candidates in the Senate election participated in a scheme involving barbecues and lollipops for votes. Candidate Ben Veness did neither of these things.
DISCLAIMER Honi Soit is published by the Students’ Representative Council, University of Sydney, Level 1 Wentworth Building, City Road, University of Sydney, NSW, 2006. The SRC’s operation costs, space and administrative support are financed by the University of Sydney. The editors of Honi Soit and the SRC acknowledge the traditional owners of this land, the Gadigal people of the Eora nation. Honi Soit is written, printed, and distributed on Aboriginal land. Honi Soit is printed under the auspices of the SRC’s directors of student publications: Fat Pepperoni, Rhys Ricearooni, Pierce Hearty-gain, Alistair Steven’s Son, and Meghan Jungle Law. Hey David Mack, you’re a star. Thanks for being the only one to read this. All expressions are published on the basis that they are not to be regarded as the opinions of the SRC unless specifically stated. The Council accepts no responsibility for the accuracy of any of the opinions or information contained within this newspaper, nor does it endorse any of the advertisements and insertions. Honi Soit is printed by MPD. ADVERTISING: To advertise in Honi Soit, contact Tina Kao or Amanda LeMay firstname.lastname@example.org www.src.usyd.edu.au
THIS WEEK’S TEAM EDITOR IN CHIEF OF POLICE: James Colley EDITORS: Jacqueline Breen, Neada Bulseco, Bridie Connell, Shannon Connellan, Andy Fraser, Julian Larnach, Michael Richardson, Laurence Rosier Staines, Tom Walker REPORTERS: Eleanor Gordon-Smith, Samantha Hawker, Mekela Panditharatne, Hannah Ryan, Felix Supernova, Julian Van Der Zee
DAD JOKE OF THE WEE K: An Englishman, Irishman, South African and a Welshman walk into a bar ... in the departure lounge at Auckland International Airport!
CONTRIBUTORS: Emma Bacon, Al Cameron, Tim Matthews, Luke Martin, Sheila Monaghan COVER: Ciaran Magee, James Colley CRUCIVERBALIST: Jim Fishwick, Monty Pemburton
H O N EY SUAV E
omen how I Baby, I like my w ic prose: dense like my academ netrable. and initially impe
LAST WEEK’S UNCREDITED CONTRIBUTORS: Dominic Dietrich, Joss Engebretsten, Rob Johnson, James O’Doherty, Tom Lee, Ed Kirkwood,
Are You With Gus?
CONTENTS 04 05
LETTERS Chad mail!
CAMPUS ANDY FRASER with part two of the debate on student elections and all the murky business they entail. The Senate elections were pretty damn confusing, but TIM MATTHEWS wades through it to explain what went down. AL CAMERON deciphers the Student Amenities Tax, and what it means for you. EMMA BACON on the fight to save Political Economy. TOM WALKER on the USU’s night of nights.
LUKE MARTIN on the week that was. JULIAN LARNACH AND LAURENCE ROSIER STAINES solve the world’s economic problems with Ross Gittins. Top blokes. FELIX SUPERNOVA matters, and so do coal seam gas wells.
G IANT CROSSWORD
JIM FISHWICK is angry ... he has some cross words to say! Geddit? CROSSWORDS! HAHAHAHA.*
HANNAH RYAN goes behind bars in search of an interview. MEKELA PANDITHARATNE talked to writer, philsopher and activist Noam Chomsky. *I’m sorry.
THE ARTS BIT
16 17 20
HONI SOIT WEEK 12 ISSUE 24 19TH OCTOBER 2011
ELEANOR GORDON-SMITH walks the green mile.
SAMANTHA HAWKER explores the Union’s stunning and diverse art collection. JULIAN VAN DER ZEE helps you make a playlist of 2011’s best tunes.
TOM WALKER is pro pro-wrestling. SHEILA MONAGHAN on #occupywallst.
SRC G RIBBLIES
THREE PAGES OF PORNOGRAPHY
HONILEAKS AWARDS For all the hacks addicted to fucking up, fucking over, and fucking in general.
O What the heck is going on with the Senate election? Find out here.
5 Catch up on the week with our bite sized pieces of news.
7 A giant! Run! ... oh no wait it’s just a giant crossword. Phew!
8 An Honi treat - a double spread of profiles.
10 The music you should’ve been listening to this year (it’s not too late!).
Burning our bridges, motherflippaz!
NEVER RUN AWAY FROM THE TIME POLICE, YOU WILL NOT SURVIVE
CHAD SIDLER’S GUIDE TO STYLE Dear Honi,
Honi is made of stories that the SMH wouldn’t care about, but students would. It challenges the way you That’s true for a couple of reasons. First, experience Sydney University. next week we’ll be having our goodbye issue and will be playing with our design This effect is tripled were a bit. And secondly, next year Honi Soit you to edit the paper. will be handed over to a different team And so, I issue this challenge to of editors, who will be given a year to the teams of editors that follow shape the paper as their own. us next year, the year after, and That’s the beauty and the curse of Honi. decades far into the future: It’s forced to constantly evolve and can Honi Soit will change you, so you’d surenever become stale. New editors every as-hell better change it. year pave a new path for themselves and create an Honi that represents both Honi is the most malleable paper in themselves and the University around them. student journalism, yet still holds the This is the last time you’ll ever see Honi Soit in this format.
It’s very easy to get caught up with looking back at the direction we took the paper in. For better or worse, no one can question that this paper is distinctly ours. Who else would be so dedicated to nomatter-what finishing off a piece-by-piece picture of a bear?
swagger and credibility that makes it worth fighting for. It deserves the respect it receives and requires nothing short of absolute dedication. Honi is work. It has brought unparalleled joy to my life, but it was work.
And looking back, the only reason this whole damned thing was worth it is I promise I won’t dwell on this for too because we came together and made an much longer, but I’m trying to capture the atmosphere of the office. There’s that Honi that no one else could have made. distinct, palpable feeling in the air that This is the last time you’ll see Honi Soit you get when you can tell you’ve been in this format. part of something that has changed your life, but has to leave. It has changed me. Now it’s your chance to change it. The office blares with laughter, arguments about commas, and Malcolm JAMES COLLEY McDonald’s ‘Yah Mo B There’ and we’re one issue closer to the end.
Chad Sidler is free to punctuate however he chooses. However, he should remember that punctuation marks have certain functions. For instance, parentheses are used to indicate an aside that can be omitted without changing the meaning of a sentence. If you remove the parentheses in the second-last paragraph of his report last week, you are left with: “So we had the Women’s Honi in first semester You really need to ask yourself what has our society become when we had [sic] to deal with such ridiculousness?” We assume he wasn’t bemoaning that one issue of Honi a year is given over to righting the perpetual male-domination of by-lines in the paper. Then again, maybe he was, if you consider the content of the parentheses we omitted above. Sidler, ‘non-standard’ spellings can be and are employed deliberately and with purpose. The use of various spellings of ‘women’, such as ‘womyn’ or ‘wimmin’, is a conscious attempt by some feminist writers to show that females don’t exist as an adjunct to a male norm. We reject your implication that these are spellings of illiteracy. Someone who writes as carelessly as you appear to should not presume to instruct others in how to spell. It is an insult to the readership that Sidler is paid $16,000 a year to weekly fill his report with this ignorant, smug, patronising and halfhearted pablum. The General Secretary’s role, according to the SRC constitution, is to “inform students of the services, welfare, advocacy and representation offered by the SRC.” Unless the approach of Christmas is an SRC service, Sidler’s report achieved none of these aims. You really need to ask yourself what our society has become when we have to deal with such ridiculousness.
CHEST - TOP RIGHT
Yours, Jim Fishwick and Maddie Parker
th If yo on ought u hav too anyth s or c e any i the fuckin ng in omme t l a Tha st r g bad his is nts egu ! Th sue t s you hip lar is ret has issu be icen sa e. t fu iled, cks !
2012 surprise fr ee concert REPORTER fro Jezabels o n Wednesd m The a y last wee pCALLOUT hotos by N k— eadaaaa! In 2012, we don’t want to make an okay Honi – we want it to be fucking excellent. Help us make next year’s Honi the paper we all know it can be. Honi Soit can only be as good as its writers, so if you want to write or if you have any ideas you want to see in your paper next year, we want to hear from you. Shoot an email to email@example.com, and tell us a little about yourself: • Your name, email address, phone number, degree, year, hobbies, favourite colour, top first-date destination… • How you want to contribute next year (photographer, reviewer, opinion writer, comedy genius, etc) • A page of your ideas of what you want to see in the paper next year, as well as one outlining any experience you think is relevant (be reasonable, your role as Year 6 Prefect may be important to your mum, but it’s probably past its use by date... unless you’re going to be writing exposes on primary school politics then yes, very relevant)
• Two samples of your work: opinion pieces, reviews, features, profiles, photographs, comics! Check out our Facebook group to keep up-to-date, get your ideas together, and send us those emails.
RIGHT TO ARM BEARS FINISHED YOUR BEAR? Put up a photo on our Facebook wall and we’ll lavish you with praise and gifts.
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TIM MATTHEWS wrote this article for a sausage.
candidates would… well… attempt to win. When I say that the Senate elections have ‘no rules,’ I mean that short of criminality, candidates can do, say and spend whatever they like. Candidates for SRC and Union Board are constrained with regards to what they can spend, where and how they can Sure, not a lot of people know what the campaign, and how voters can vote – and for Senate election is, and even fewer genuinely good reason. No candidate should be able care. However, each year, we only elect to win an election by outspending others, by one individual to represent all 32,000 campaigning in underhanded ways, by bribing undergraduate students at the highest level of voters or (though evidently a surprise to some University decision making. And quite frankly, Senate candidates) by fraud. we all deserve better than this year’s election. Part of the problem with the Senate elections The Senate elections certainly shifted into is the lack of information about them. Outside a higher gear this year, joining their more of hack circles of student politicians, very harassment-prone cousins the SRC and Union few people can distinguish between Senate Board elections. They had posters, fliers, and SRC campaigns, and even fewer could lecture bashes, T-Shirts and free lollipops. The distinguish between the candidates. The calamity culminated in several candidates candidate statements provided on the Senate putting on free BBQs, replete with Zappos and website are more platitude than policy. free Red Bull, to entice potential voters. Don’t Realistically, most people will only ever be able get me wrong, I’m never going to complain to vote based on reputation at best, and who about a free lunch, but there is something shoved a sausage sandwich in their hand at nauseating about it all – the USyd equivalent worst. of kissing a baby for the cameras. What is more disappointing about all of this There are reports that some candidates is that just this week, the NSW Parliament engaged in rather more unscrupulous are considering legislation to deregulate the practices as well. In an act perhaps more composition of University governing bodies. befitting of the Afghani Presidential race, When this happened in Victoria, universities some candidates (and I emphasise the plural) such as Monash reduced the student were allegedly found to be taking down the representation on their Senates. The conduct SIDs of potential voters and voting for them. of the candidates this year has only given the University more reason to consider this option. Well, we will never know exactly the extent to which these acts distorted the outcome of the I hope that the outcome of this election election. On Wednesday, the returning officer, makes you angry. Angry that candidates Dr William Adams, in an email to all of the resorted to such tactics to win. Angry that the candidates, declared the result of the election University has never thought to make more invalid. Dr Adams cited ‘the behaviour of fair or transparent one of the most significant particular candidates,’ which he claimed elections for undergraduate students. Or, compromised the results of the election. just angry that now we’re going to have to sit through the whole election process again. Evidently, the University was surprised that Fuck democracy. in participating in an election with no rules, All good elections have three things: lots of information about the candidates, clear rules constraining the conduct of the election, and a legitimate result. The election for an Undergraduate Fellow of the University Senate currently has none of them.
The Annual HONI SOIT Awards Ceremony.
No leaks for you this week. Instead of supplying topical and essential leaks facts for your thirsty brain, we’ve put together some sweet awards, encompassing all that has passed this year. Why don’t you head along
to page 20 and find out whether or not you picked one up? Join us in celebrating the best of times and the blurst of times. Of course, it wouldnt be HoniLeaks without some treats you probably don’t know yet...
SENATE ELECTIONS INVALIDATED
MICHAEL SPENCE AND THE STATE OF THE UNION TOM WALKER isn’t even sure what black ties are. Seeing Vice-Chancellor Michael Spence speak at the USU’s annual State of the Union dinner was surreal. The crowd was as tense as he was relaxed; his talk came across as a 21st speech from a disappointed evil stepfather, his manner was a cross between The Crusty Old Dean and Emperor Palpatine. Spence opened by questioning the USU’s “USU is Evolutionary” slogan, wondering aloud if it meant the USU was Neanderthal, or it had evolved past humanity’s present state, then lead into a speech that came across as more backhanded than openhanded towards the Union. He touched on the issue of the ownership of the Holme and Wentworth buildings, artfully pausing when saying that
they belonged “to the passion and creativity of the students of the University of Sydney…Union”. The speech was outro’d by board Honorary Treasurer Jacqui Munro, who described it onstage as “illuminating”. Awkward toasts aside, the dinner was a chance to celebrate the Union’s achievements. The Union Blues and debating prizes were awarded, and the music society Beat The System won Best Club with over 100 members, cementing their position as the top dogs of music on campus. Keynote speaker Julia Zemiro charmed the ties and cakes off everyone in attendance with a heartfelt speech about the USU’s creative importance and the USU introduced a video that wet the eyes of several attendees. Spence out!
STORYTELLING: Tales from the Union Art Collection SAMANTHA HAWKER takes a tour of Verge’s newest offering. No piece will tell the same tale to each viewer. Horan and Cannan capitalise on this by inviting viewers to record their thoughts on the stream of brown paper rolled out in the middle of the gallery space. Like celebrities showcasing their best angles on the red carpet, past spectators have made sure to pen their most insightful inner musings from a well-crafted image of Spiderman to the lyrics of The Beatles’ ‘Nowhere Man’. Perhaps as inspiration to the less creative, the work of local emerging writers adorn the glass exterior of the gallery and can also be found in their entirety within two black folders in The curators—USU’s art interns Elyse Horan the backroom. The best of these impressions and Bethany Cannan—have chosen an eclectic are those of Benjamen Judd whose musings but fitting selection that is sure to please the of Henson’s Untitled 1980/82 series are as most discerning of artistic palates. Finding evocative and tender as the photographs Monty Python illustrator Terry Gilliam’s Spam themselves. with Everything, Please residing just across The magnifying glass that accompanies from Albrecht Durer’s early 1500 woodcut Durer’s tiny woodcut print acts as a way print Christ before Caiaphas is about as to remind the viewer to gaze beyond the incongruous as finding a five ounce sparrow carrying a one pound coconut, but somehow commotion to the indistinct moments and characters that make up the larger picture. the combination works. This collection of works celebrate both The exhibition, based around the concept of individualism (as seen in Noel Counihan’s storytelling, runs on a similar platform to the aggressive linocut of a single man in agonising objectives of the 2009 Verge Gallery exhibition starvation) and the collective human Unwrapped: Works from the USU art store, experience of the Indigenous Australian with each piece in the diverse selection dreaming stories (represented through allowed to establish its own distinctive George Malibirr’s Mewal – Honey Spirits). presence. Each piece is a standout in its own Storytelling reminds us just how densely right; there is no centrepiece to this exhibition flavoursome a goblet of 500, 000 year old and as such there is a calming equilibrium in humanity would be. It is definitely worth the gallery, as each work waits for their turn to bringing it up from the cellar for a taste every tell a story. now and then. The vast majority of the 650 works owned by the University of Sydney Union spend most of their time hidden away in a small storage space. Like bottles of 50-year-old Penfolds Grange kept in an underground cellar, the Union’s banquet of fine art, diligently collected over the past century and representing some of the world’s best artistic talent from the last 600 years, is reserved for special occasions. So when a few worthy students are given a key to this treasure vault hidden deep within the Union dungeons, the Verge Gallery is very much worth a visit.
#honiqanda PART 2
And after that quick Ab-circle Pro infomercial on this not so free-to-air telecast, you’re back watching Honi qanda with Eleanor Gordon-Smith speaking on behalf of independent presidential candidate Tim Matthews (VOICE), and Donherra Walmsley on behalf of Labor left affiliated presidential candidate Phoebe Drake (STANDUP!). In our exploration of this years SRC presidency race, part 1 delved into the open campus debate, and now for part 2. Join the twitter discussion on #honiqanda if you’re feeling voluptuous. ANDY: I wanted to touch on the campaigning day and the campaigning styles. Something that came up within this election was how aggressive the campaigning was. A few cases were brought to the SRC Returning Officer on both sides. What’s your opinion on the current condition of the campaigning environment? Is all fair in love and war or should the people keep the peace? ELEANOR: If Samuel Beckett was going to write a play about post-apocalyptic madness and the degenerative generation of the youth, it would be exemplified in the final hour of that campaign. It was insanity; it was the state of nature. People would follow or shadow Tim quite a lot, which would mean standing at his elbow, changing direction every time he would change direction, an invasion of personal space that would be madness in any other circumstance. There are two harms that come from that. One is everyone hates each other by the end of the day, which is counter-productive because we’re going to end up on council together. There is so much bad blood, you have already diminished the chance of doing a good job for students. The second thing is, I think it is really awful for students who aren’t involved in the hack madness. There are a huge number of undergraduate students this year, and this year we had 4848 votes cast for president. This is drastically higher than any previous amount that we’ve seen but even that is miniscule compared to the huge body of students that we have available who can vote. It is no wonder that people look at this organisation and at the people who are supposed to be representing it (almost coming to blows) and think “I don’t want any part of that.”
ANDY FRASER returns to the fray.
ANDY: What do you think about the idea of putting more stringent regulations on how people can campaign and interact. ELEANOR: Regulate the crap out of it. One of the things that I noticed on the actual election day that contributes to this bizarre third world atmosphere, is that it is outdoors. Put your polling booths inside. It’s really easy, then you have a door and a roof over voters which means that they aren’t physically being grabbed at the point which they’re going into a polling booth. ANDY: Were you just pointing to a bruise you received while campaigning? ELEANOR: Yes, see that (points to elbow). DEE: And we had campaigners who were pushed and shoved. I personally didn’t experience that, but Phoebe is quite a small woman and I’m not saying that anything was deliberate but she did feel quite harassed and intimidated throughout the course of the second day, in the afternoon particularly. ELEANOR: Even for Tim, who is not a small man, having two or three people in your grill all the time, it is confronting for candidates who are trying to do a job. DEE: I think that it got a bit out of control. The outright lies that are being spread by both teams, then people hear those and get really angry. There were people on the VOICE team who had said that we’d done nothing in the time we had been in control of the organisation. Which, after regularly working for 50-70 hours a week for this organisation, was pretty offensive and personally hurtful. ELEANOR: I think it is well intentioned, not the madness, but most of the people involved in this are well intentioned. I actually don’t think that there is a single CV stacker around, I think the people here care about it, but as you say, there are things said that are untrue. I had a couple of people follow me around for a good half hour, shouting at anyone I was talking to that I was from the National Party. Not a thing anymore, first of all – historically innacurate – but that level of untruth is hurtful.
DEE: The other thing is, I’m going to put it out there and say that I don’t think we had the best Returning Officer for this year, which is not the fault of myself who directly advocated for an DEE: I’m inclined to agree. One of our alternative Returning Officer. I think campaigners was from the University regulations sure, but at the same time of Queensland which has notoriously you need a competent Returning Officer got the single most horrific and horrible to enforce those regulations. And it is in elections in the country. People are the regulations that you can’t bully and assaulted to the point where it is taken harass people. to the police, like tyres slashed, really ANDY: Perhaps they just need more intense horrible stuff. This campaigner people on the ground. made the comment to me that it was getting to new levels of intensity ELEANOR: I think as far as the RO stuff and harassment, on both sides, by goes, he is only one man. There are the end of the election. Personally, I many voting booths and there are completely agree with Eleanor: that bordering on hundreds of campaigners. is not something that I am in favour There are incidents that become heresay of at all. Obviously the issue is, in an and incidents that actually happen. election, it is really hard to control such a vast team of people who all get very Whatever the ensuing changes to passionate, very competitive, very riled regulations/RO, it’s promising that both up. I always try to make clear to my parties recognise the clear and present campaigners that we were running a issues with the electorial process. Please positive campaign. I didn’t want anyone thank Dee and Eleanor for speaking with slagging off Tim or the VOICE campaign us. Join us next week when we eat some team because quite rightly, as Eleanor strawberries with special guest Falkor, said, we will be working together. the never-ending luck dragon. He’ll be teaching us a lesson in debating and the ELEANOR: The problem is getting that colonisation of Hogwarts. message to every campaigner.
THE FIGHT TO SAVE POLITICAL ECONOMY
EMMA BACON wants you to take your hands of her subjects. In the last week, the Save Political Economy campaign held a public meeting of 60 – 70 students, staff and alumni. The meeting was held to discuss progress in the School of Social and Political Sciences (SSPS) strategic review and plan the campaign to keep the Political Economy department strong and independent. We will be holding a rally on Tuesday the 18th as Honi goes to print, with plans to march down Eastern Avenue to the Quad. The discussion paper for the review proposed four different formations for the SSPS; one was the status quo and, in two proposals, Political Economy, along with the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies and the Centre for International Security Studies, was amalgamated into a Politics and International Relations department or school. When two members of the Political Economy Society appeared in front of the review panel, representing student interests, they were told that students were being paranoid and had a “1970s mindset”. They were also told that while the University administration had no plans to shelve the Political Economy major, there were not guarantees what form that major would take. At one point it was suggested that students interested in studying Political Economy could take Macro and Micro Economics as the prerequisite junior units for further study. It was also argued that Political Economy was too difficult to categorise; The head of SSPS, Professor Simon Tormey, had Googled ‘Political Economy’ only to find lots of American Political Science results. It’s shocking to me that the people proposing that Political Economy could be amalgamated into Politics and IR think that we should organise the University according to Google. Statements like that suggest that perhaps some members of the review panel don’t have a clear
understanding of what Political Economy at Sydney Uni is, or that there is no clear rational for the possible amalgamation. Perhaps the panel feels comfortable making flippant comments such as these in front of students because they don’t care about our view of the process or the changes. I’ve been keeping track of the Occupy Wall Street protests, and I think that a lot of the slogans about community and people power resonate with the Save Ecop struggle. One in particular has stuck with me; “If not us: Who? If not now: When?” We, as the student community, can’t wait for anybody else to fight this fight. We have to stand up for our own rights because nobody else is more qualified or has more invested than us. We understand that this issue does not solely affect Political Economy students; it affects the entire university community. If cuts to one discipline are accepted without question, then no subject will be safe. When polled in classes, students have overwhelmingly supported an independent Political Economy department. If the University administration decides to amalgamate Political Economy into a Politics and International Relations department or school, they are not only attacking a powerful legacy of independent economic thought but they are choosing to ignore the opinion of the student, staff and alumni community. We will take this opportunity to fight for what we believe in: an independent and well resourced Political Economy department; and we hope that all who believe in thinking critically about our social and economic system will stand with us. Political Economy at Sydney University was founded on student and staff struggle, and with your help we can fight to keep it now.
SSAF: A VICTORY FOR STUDENTS, OR IS IT? AL CAMERON talks the student services and amenities fee.
On Tuesday October 11, the Higher Education Legislation Amendment (Student Services Amenities Fee) Bill 2010 was voted into law. And, with it, years of consternation were finally put to rest.
universities to provide services that they couldn’t with the dramatic reduction of their funding post-VSU.
The SSAF as it is more commonly known, effectively puts an end to the Voluntary Student Unionism that came into effect on July 1, 2006 (you might remember it as Howard and Costello’s ideological orgasm).
You will have to pay $250 ($263 after tax) to the University at the start of every year. Luckily you are allowed to put it on HECS – so it wont exactly be coming out of your pocket during O-Week.
You will hear conservatives moan that the SSAF is a return to compulsory student unionsim, that the sky is about to fall in, and that this was the worst event since the fall of the Howard Government. Liberal Senator Brett Mason best sums up the anti-case stating that: “It will hurt disadvantaged students and this is a tax on students forcing them to pay for services that many will not or cannot use.”
And here is where the certainty ends.
Others will be welcoming the return of compulsory funding for student organisations and the improved quality of services that this bill should ensure. NUS President Jesse Marshall says that the revenue will revive student campus services and create a better university experience.
So, the VC is going to get an additional $11 million a year from students – and technically doesn’t have to give it to either the SRC or the Union.
The aim of the SSAF is to allow
But lets think about how the SSAF is going to affect you.
Unfortunately, because our Union thrived during VSU, we are in a unique position: the SSAF legislation stipulates that the money raised (around $11 million for USyd) goes directly to the University, not student organisations. And apparently only 30% of the revenue that Universities raise through the SSAF actually has to be used to fund services and amenities.
Weird, isn’t it? Our money could actually be going to refurbishing the VC’s office rather than funding the SRC’s legal service, or an extra mallet for the croquet society.
Often we see valorous political movements merge uncomfortably with blind opposition in the absence of accurate, publicly disseminated information. This sentiment could tar almost any political debate in Australia currently, but none more so than the coal seam gas (CSG) debate. Coal seam gas is methane gas made by the same processes that create coal measures (a huge patch of coal underground). Extracting the methane gas is usually done by fraccing, whereby the gas is retrieved from fractures in the coal seam by drilling and then pumping a mixture of sand, water and a chemical combination. The water pressure pouring into the gap forces sand into nooks and opens them wider. The water/gas mixture is then taken to the surface and separated, generating hundreds of gigalitres of wastewater per year of operation. One advantage to coal seam gas is that it produces 40% less waste in burning than regular gas, making CSG particularly attractive in a post-carbon tax political environment. Can we really trade one impact for another? If it’s economically advantageous, then probably! However, the same conditions that make land attractive for agriculture also make it attractive for CSG extraction. Acquiring social license (i.e. public support) has been a key failure for the CSG industry; the back-pedalling to catch up on gaining public support is most obvious with the current ‘we want CSG’ advertising campaign. Indigenous leader Sam Watson
Revaluating all values III JULIAN LARNACH & LAURENCE ROSIER STAINES fix the world economy (not hyperbole)! In our Nietzsche-lite quest to revaluate all (economic) values, we have so far talked about speculation and the historical rise (and eventual fall) of markets predicated on nothing but perceived value. We also spoke to economic dynamo Ross Gittins about the driving force of modern economics: the all-encompassing yet persistently evasive ‘confidence’. We concluded last week that humans may try to be rational animals, but when greed-related ecstasy or fear-induced panic sets in, it becomes clear how far we have to go. But now, the solutions!
felix supernova is full of hot air!
told the Green Left: “[There are] significant concerns about the effect of coal seam gas on our land. This is a dangerous industry and any damage to land and water could last for thousands of years. The Anna Bligh government [in Queensland] and the mainstream political parties are in bed with the big mining companies. We must challenge this threat to our future with all our strength.” Landowner rights are a sensitive point for many farmers in rural NSW and QLD—particularly those reliant on fresh water aquifers for irrigation—industries in the resource sector and both state governments have stepped on the toes of many who would arguably be in a position to support CSG development on their properties. In this state CSG falls under NSW Petroleum (Onshore) Act of 1991, which doesn’t explicitly mention coal seam gas at all—rather it assumes parallels between the two extraction processes because they both use wells rather than cutting and digging associated with the extraction of other resources. The ‘Lock the Gate’ Alliance comprehensively covers the concerns of landowners who, for a variety of reasons, don’t want CSG wells on their properties. Another significant issue (for several heinously complicated reasons) is water. I want to say something like: “Dropping a CSG well through a fresh water aquifer is bad, piercing freshwater aquifers that rest on the coal bed is worse and a situation where the aquifer is saline or under the coal bed is comparatively equal in its
“If you want capitalism to survive you have to set the rules for it and guide it, which is not to rob it of all enterprise and risk-taking but neither is it to give [traders] a free hand.” Indeed, it is difficult to deny that the ‘overblown’ free market ideology was largely responsible for the speculation with borrowed money that caused (and will probably continue to cause) global financial crises. Sacre bleu! One potential solution, then, is to conform to this fetishization of free markets and just attempt to behave rationally as groups, so that the cycles of boom and bust are less severe. Fat chance, fatcats!
To begin with, we must realise that mainstream economics presupposes that there is no problem. Under this school of thought, the cycles of boom and bust are just that: cycles. ‘Cycles’ sounds natural, and how can you get angry at something that’s natural? Capitalists have no problem with crises such as climate change or falling fossil fuel supplies because the market will fix them. There will be a demand for clean air or a new energy source and businesses will provide these. The reason we don’t see an electric car in every garage is because it’s not the best bet yet; Ross Gittins describes the market’s textbook role as “distributing capital to the most profitable opportunities”, and that’s exactly what’s going on.
The next potential solution is basically to change everything. “Is that a solution?” you ask. Probably not, but let’s go along with it until the hippies get tired. A train of thought set in locomotion by radical Australian sociologist Ted Trainer (not Turner) is a simple proposition: we can’t keep going at our current rate so we should stop for a second. We can’t continue aiming for better lifestyles; we should be satisfied with perfect adequacy. We should abandon large economies for more local and sustainable ones. We should co-operate. This sounds like a human reenactment of Paul Simon’s ‘Me and Julio Down By The Schoolyard’: well-meaning but impossible to enact. People won’t change; we are inherently greedy and competitive. If someone just stopped caring about competition, someone more competitive than them would pick up the slack. Fat chance, hippies! As with the first one, this one relies too much on unfounded optimism to actually qualify as a viable solution.
In other words, mainstream economics fetishizes the free market. Many, Gittins included, think this is deeply problematic.
The last and favoured solution has its roots in Keynesian theory. Sure, the market is all-powerful. But occasionally
impact where water and mining cross-over.” However there are so many qualifiers I’d have to include that it’s almost redundant to comment. The first response to that point would be that it’s only relevant when considering fraccing. It’s entirely plausible to drill for coal without fraccing in the right conditions. It is estimated that roughly 10% of United States coal seam projects don’t use fraccing, and their CSG industry has been commercially viable since 1949. Wastewater from fraccing is actively recycled back into the basin it’s extracted from. Many new industries will spring up around recycling this water; many industrial salts can be extracted from wastewater, whereas the soiled water itself can be used for dust suppression in open cut mines, manufacturing and other commercial purposes. This wastewater, untreated, is a third of the salinity of seawater and between half and ten times the salinity of safe drinking water. Check out these websites for more information: http://lockthegate.org.au/ http://www.derm.qld.gov.au/ environmental_management/coal-seamgas/csg-water.html http://www.sbs.com.au/insight/episode/ index/id/429/Coal-Seam-Gas http://www.bees.unsw.edu.au/ event/29th-jj-frankel-memorial-lecture
it screws up (GFC, bitches). However, the fault is not its own; it’s based on the (imperfect) human interaction with the (perfect) system, largely due to mankind’s inability to predict the future and incapacity to always behave rationally in groups—remember: speculation and confidence from our previous articles. To cope with this discrepancy, government should provide effective demand to consume overambitious supply, supplement supply when there’s too much demand, and place restraints on trading and banking. “It’s not a choice between no rules or watertight, detailed rules,” Gittins tells us. “The ideal is somewhere in the middle, with freedom of action but prevention of things that are so bad they have adverse flow-on effects to innocent bystanders.” And when everything is back in working order, the visible hand of the government can pull out and the invisible hand of the market can continue to work its magic. Of course, as long as the free-market ideologues and the regulation-mongers keep blindly blaming each other for all the faults of the world economy, true progress will be close to impossible. Crises demand action and good times demand inaction, so there is no onesize-fits-all ideological solution for economics—any more than there could be one for love. The bottom line is this, people: a market with too many constraints will lose its adaptiveness, and a market with too few will leave the door open for Ayn Rand-worshipping bigwigs to destabilise everything. The path to walk is the diplomatic one, ignoring anyone with an ideological axe to grind. You heard it here first!
News In Briefs LUKE MARTIN gives you the naked news! The Gillard government succeeded in passing its Clean Energy Bill 2011—popularly dubbed the ‘Carbon Tax’—in the Lower House last Wednesday, but lost out on passing its equally controversial Malaysia refugee swap deal. The Government didn’t even put the immigration bill to a vote after discovering it would not have majority support in the Lower House. The walls were literally coming down around the Prime Minister this week, with her 80-year-old asbestos-ridden official residence now officially deemed a fire hazard. The Lodge will undergo over 18 months of renovations, forcing the PM and partner Tim to find ‘suitable accommodation’ elsewhere.
Why coal seam gas wells matter.
The protest movement #OccupyWallStreet spread to over 100 cities outside the US, with protesters in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide first taking to the streets last Saturday. In Zuccotti Park, NYC, where the movement began, protestors won their first small victory on Friday morning, saving face in a showdown with police concerning sanitation of the land being occupied. The owners of the privately owned park demanded police remove the protestors so it could be cleaned. However, when activist numbers swelled to approximately 2000, police called off any attempts of forcedremoval. At the same time on Friday, G20 finance ministers gathered in Paris to work out who in particular should be shot for the state of the global economy, especially the condition of the Euro. The meeting followed an exceptionally anxious 48 hour period in which 16 of the 17 member nations were (excuse the pun) banking on Slovakia to be the final nation to ratify the latest Euro-rescue package. After parliament failed to pass the bill and world markets took a dive, Slovakian President Ivan Gašparovič turned around his Indonesian-bound flight and returned home, dismissing the minority government and installing a new one, with the package then being rectified. Democracy in action? Speaking of democracy, Italy’s embattled and moderately wealthy Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, survived his 53rd no-confidence vote in parliament. The guy is a legend for all the wrong reasons. Finally, Apple released its latest iPhone last week to the adoration of its legions of devoted customers. Some have attributed the naming of the latest iPhone as a direct reference to Apple’s late CEO Steve Jobs, with the iPhone ‘4S’ being purportedly ‘4 Steve’. The $1.2 billion Apple is expected to make from the weekend ain’t a bad tribute either.
THE MURDERWORD ACROSS
1. I heart Ms. Liu sitcom (1,4,4) 6, 223. Scooby’s friends said to be elusive squid’s output (7,3) 10. Colbert seated in rail site oddly 13. Amy would drink the establishment? 18. Omar: “I’m banging part of a xylophone” 27. Search brush 28. Overturned stupid word in middle of period 29. Take back gang wearing some dress 30. Girl of the month 31. Accountant reads Aussie dollar, information technology, and unending ore. 32. Before December, unusual sores silence first forefathers 33. Politician is Spanish man housing a model 34. Declaration in favour of object and concrete 35. Hail Mary vocal solo capturing hollow voice of mother (3,5) 36. Chaplin film about goat? (3,3) 37. Phoney tailcoat rid of totalitarian... 41. …Doohickey for carelessley bombing a hat 43. From Admiral Ackba: “it’s a trap!” 44. Realising is not freezing 45. Prejudiced offer contains Gotye, mostly 47. Batty dears admit six for consultant 49. See 14-dn 55. Bell noise encircling wind left getting smaller 56. Men stay fixed from truce 58. Climb notes 59. Crowded and equally hot
61. Asian twins? 62. Went outside, peculiar curse usefully expended (4,5) 67. Those who work for celebrities have very loud energy 69. State in the style of president lacking oxygen 70. International organisation with grown-up direction considered pure 72. Evenly assign a golden prairie - in it is Dad but not Mum? (6,6) 74. Spreads small dramas 77. USyd with poem of infinity 78. Practice for Jim and Monty to get older 79. Saw dot and bear 81. Synthetic material loses lithium and one cake 82, 176. Aptly-named royal? (8,2) 84. Rice dish from friend contains the Spanish answer 86. California yields boxer 91. Heath in messy room 92. One in traditional Chinese crime gang 93. Boy half-breaks sound tone 94. Isn’t after quiet colour 95. Rough anal cries red for wanting to have sex (6,6) 96. To enshrine damaged jewel 98. Drug is nearly nice 102. Small morning with degree of a dance 105. Freak to bum around, breaking a loom 106. Hardly any as big that sound like part of a plane? 108. Trusty icon playing Some Like it Hot actor (4,6) 112. Graceful pachyderm has heart replaced with
string 116. Much ado with crumbling manor butler 118. Dead tardy 120. Potter gets rest and recreation in Hay 121. Move! I’ve left the train’s factory 124. Bath next to fatso 126. bbrvtng? 130. Antibiotic secreted in the ear... 131. …at gratitude of revolutionary case 133. Broken rose for cherub 137. Clean following ham nonsense 140. Big NRL team take 747s? (5,4) 143. We hear informal drink causes injury 146. Speaking Eloquently 101: Cerium! Weasley! Rankin! 147. Curve filling any disorder 141. Ben, uninitiated, prosecutes for results 152. One who makes do with colonist? 153. Particularly special Honi ticket 154. Criminal grasps slope with climbing gear 155. Wrote while imprisoned 157. Ghandi has double degree covering porkpie 158. Unwell bird said to be against the law 160. I ran around storm 162. Large animal is cool Tellytubby 165. Form unusual phase 167. Fruit’s sound is rock 168. Hip-hop takes the blame 170. Vow halves libido (1,2) 171. Gravy mix with hug, kiss, and hug 172. Slimy hawk moving sentimentally 173. Make use of a covering, so to speak 175. Grease character is grainy 177. Hero is fool after me
Post your completed crossword on Facebook and tag HoniSoit and you will get a shout out in the final issue! 180. Rub a lot of people before time 184. Set up in NSW 186. Said to choose rodent 187. Stay with ‘go to jail’ instruction, lacking permit? (2,3,2) 188. Seize American ancient city quietly 190. Acid derivative in awesome gallery 192. Excellent pop is ready? (4,2) 193. Give water to vermin within Jekyll’s friend 195. Top courier fresh from Caribbean island (6,4) 196. Heartless ape to share turning over of soil 199. Acres initially lacking coins and curves 201. The act of getting to know someone by tying them up? 204. Winding tool doesn’t start to move slowly 205. I am a media influence? 208. Opening most of christmas calendar 209. Authors prevent... uhh... hm. I dunno? (7,5) 213. Parts stop enshrining extract 214. Frequent flyer has rosiest form? (3,7) 217. Those who perform 201 have layers? 219. Stoker from Maroubra, maybe 220. Joining Simba, not feeling love? 222. Thoroughly grease the energy source (3,4) 226. A steamy hot kind of parent who doesn’t work (4,2,4) 231. Former Tolkein monster is model demonremover 234. Computer’s brain has firm golf swing (4,5) 237. A 292 upset fabler 241. See 9 243. Disestablishmentarianism picture of short class in chant 244. 153 produced van cage of luxury
245. Painful singer? 246. Credit union slowly ends street decorator 247. Want to start with Anna 248. News is part of sin for... 252. ...good French net hat 254. Awful choir - it’s the Victorians? 255. Fasten Eliot to beers 256. Loud editorial team? 257. Shelves no longer quiet when helping Santa 258. Donkey repeatedly in killer 265. The US tax service belongs to them 266. 162-dn to get away from 246? (6,6)
DOWN 2. Slacken toilets bent without wings 3. Instrument of underwear call after six 4. Damned eternal dance 5. Swimmer starts examining cypher 6. Souvenir I... I organised... NOT 7. Black star? 8. Former pet can’t change being eager 9, 241-ac. Hey, morning comes after follower of Jehova’s Looney cowboy... (8,3) 10. ...is ten bananas for a beer glass 11. Practice cricket match 12. Tipsy NASA imbibes drink with wizard 14, 49, 60. Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah hit sorted out a macabre punishment (1’1,3,5,8) 15. Perhaps I grew a bug 16. Lost some troops. Oh dear! 17. Particular Southern Ocean, say 19. Prevents a green French slaphead 20. Indemnifier isn’t out and more certain 21. Zombie Christian convert? (4,5) 22. Rumour: straw hides listeners 23. Rolf sent back a margarine 24. Diagram capitally prepared in the manner of a model 25. Change atom’s issues 26. Treat loses right to nipple 30. Help commercial weakness 38. Not eating well will turn Liam into runt 39. Beer of Saint Fitzgerald 40. Rudd decapitated by Queen’s milkers 44. Canter madly to sweet drink 48. Reveal 245 twisting permanently 50. Pewter’s mostly smashed for idiots 51. Eat iron like the chief 52. Imprecise fashion magazine, almost? 53. Affection for senders developed after X 54. Mistake pils? (4,2) 57. Department stores Mike 60. See 14-dn 63. Spread throughout team, peer for a change 64. Regal mistake is huge 65. Springfield is unclean 66. Function giving area beneath a curve is essential 68. Catcher deals with chap 69. Ridiculous square root beneath sailor? 71. 89 are composing French verse
268. Women’s digital okra? (6,7) 269. Any external particle for body 270. 1000 and fifty in zzzzz make water breathers 273. See! See! Toney’s breaking (3,4,2) 275. Going down to remove smell 277. Loan said to be not as low 278. Disallow little girl from instrument 279. Devil fibbed and insinuated 281. Well-built way of MCing 286. Prophylactic not fully an apartment 288. Difficult boner ousts from within 289. Disaster model and star, am I?
290. Judas is Roman vehicle without hydrogen 292. Raise position 293. In favour of farming equipment to make maths equipment 300. Italian Tim (sic) disturbed art movement 302. Bismuth family have one swimsuit 304. Bayeaux pole after record attempt 305. Repairing core damage of original air mail? (7,6) 307. Animal story author with bee, perhaps (1,1,5) 312. Matter of great importance inflated head horrendously (4,3,5)
313. Harsh Faust here removes heads 314. An extremity in preparation? 315. Hi, 316 managed to be less sick 316. She’ll eat her bit of cowhide 317. Pug lying with some kind of duckling 318. Crusade involved secondhand vehicle (4,3) 319. Rebels see danger in disguise 320. Ungulate insect to marry covertly 321. Come endlessly with Dad’s small pointer 322. Eavesdropped Heard?
73. Has woken up at midday holding fifty unlimited agers. Please put straight? (2,6,6) 75. A sailor is first gamemaker 76. The USU – it equips some apartment 80. Bear vessel meets lawyer 83. “Little person,” said Chomsky? 85. Fix men in commercial 87. Cut off a friend holding place 88. Music show fury 89. Posh Bradman, perhaps? CTRL+Z! 90. Fluff at home in lieutenant 93. Tug clipped the edge of flower 97. Age of model leaving British school 99. Joker with microphone follows carbon monoxide 100. Wind of half effort 101. Depend on Capone leaving, really 103. Boy is semi-bender 104. Pay for dance and sport... 105. ...before relative, audibly 107. Jim and Monty after much of a yoga position 108. Ate unusual meal 109. Steal bank 110. Prompt Rod 111. Partially growing a sultana 113. Country established on one article 114. Bend broken chair without me 115. Ruffian hiding with ugg boots 117. Brutes mostly have pickup trucks 119. Musical (Newtown Theatre October 18-28) is at home with baby he-Tiger (4,3,5) 122. One who cheats without hesitations of age 123. Underground network beats my wussy arrangement (6,6) 125. Smell a snake 127. Simon Le Bon said, “Extract of small plant.” 128. Bird mostly cowardly 129. ‘Heat sensor’ is potential theoreom term 131. A redhead, a pen, and a type of coffee bean 132. Oddly harsh title for 82 (1.1.1.) 134. Some start to weep about east-northeast landscape 135. Pipette saw penny in one who pulls in (3,7) 136. Those who spread insult embrace praise, right? 138. Comply with orders from Jacob Eyre 139. Looks at some fabric samples 141. Sparrow organised rental on halloween decoration (4,1’7) 142. Swaps damaged Greek island for 11 herbs
and spices (5,6) 144. Abuse starts concealing functions 145. Dodgy paddling around an area for helicopters (7,3) 148. Gear at centre of glucogene 149. Shouts agreement about fifty-fifty 150. Bath in Madrid 156. Panel show of life force 159. Expelled vice, corrupted the heartless 500 161. Emily, I love you - will you marry me? Jim 162. Magician has three-quarters of hour with noisy one 163. Put down wine? 164. Spirit disenheartened – ninety miles per hour 166. Blind ecstacy – Roger swallowing Les 169. Detective 3.14 174. Vexed Mr. Dickens wins military medal (9,5) 176. See 82 178. 148-dn can turn drink 179. Gingrich is a slippery character? 181. State did start upset 182. Professor confuses me & 296 183. Shoot ends silver animal 184. Affect devil in whitegoods manufacturer 185. Cyclist poorly laced 189. Dyslexics unite and come apart 191. Run south with hot dish! 194. Your ma evens out tasty noise 197. Cleopatra’s killer - wasps without wings 198. Within pub queen 199. Gross talk 200. Bagsies the last army boats, mostly 202. Gore with significant other, too 203. Live up wrongdoing 205. North or South-East vikings 206. Peninsula is the French 207. Spills paint on Columbus’s ship 210. Botswana hides automaton 211. Yoko, or nearest offer 212. Luck be a Knight of the Empire 213. Portent ringmasters? 215. Nothing... 500... 550... They end bizarrely 216. Anachronism worht? 218. Alex doesn’t finish drink 221. Dark toilet in General Motors 223. See 6-ac 224. New earthrow badly damaged by the elements 225. Sheep’s family line gloves? 226. Concentrate on exceptional peepers, we hear 227. Laurel mishandled workers
228. I crave a wild envy 229. The underlying point is scorched earth oft met earth (5,2,3,6) 230. Cruel average 232. Frequently deca-? 233. Cannot be hypocrisy 235. Planet Florida throws party for carnivorous plant (5,7) 236. Overwhelm one nun with boyfriend 238. Seedy part of London has such a prostitute? 239. Cod pee to create eight-legged animal 240. Weak tea drunk in ironic manner 241. Sheila ends, in the beginning, for Joan or Mary 242. Flounce with meat 249. A lady is out of sorts 250. Let aluminium not be high 253. Essays for the State Emergency Service 259. Throw rocks at Oliver 260. Make mistake and task 261. Snakes that are good at sums? 262. Problems with sausages 263. Roger to run into plane 264. Hymn left in folded maps 267. Theodore: I pause monotony 269. Lovelace 20-dn for slow music 271. Quick! Stop eating! 272. O for a home on Bennelong Point? (5,5) 274. Arrange CEO monies, and literally so! 276. Nails ten in disguise where 302 ended? 280. ‘I smear’ is mostly my first hypnosis 282. Equestrian event where clothes get older 283. Bird with average decay 284. Musical ring for a twitch 285. Springfield’s bus driver guy is Turkish 287. Numb dickhead with no way forward 291. War poet soon holding fool 294. Entertains royals with Elizabeth First? 295. Stands a speech for part of a poem 296. Bug spies encircling scoundrel 297. Weapon reaps badly 298. Painting in bath of Pelopennesian War victors? 299. One who procrastinates mostly isn’t as fresh 301. Give up pip, we hear 303. Problem: this is the penultimate one 305. Stun a labyrinth 308. Tedious drill? 309. Mistake hose to boot 310. Cripes! Unruly hoon! (2,2) 311. Stab this last disease
JIM FISHWICK and MONTY PEMBURY-WINCHESTER are INCREDIBLE. Jim: The Honi team asked me to make a giant crossword. Once I'd decided on the grid size, and realised the enormity of the task, I chose to collaborate with my friend Monty. Collaborating was a new experience, but a lot of fun. I hope it's the same for you. Monty: To save space, letterings are only given if the solution is not one word. 69-ac is stolen from our lord Araucaria, and 106-ac from Graeme Garden. While writing this crossword, I injured my right shoulder from overwork. I hope you appreciate the suffering that has gone into constructing your leisure activities. “Cryptic crosswords,” wrote Rich Hall, “are apparently designed by dyslexic idiot savants who have read Everything Ever Written but never learned to diagram a sentence.” Unlike their Quick cousins, Cryptic clues invariably make little sense to newcomers. The constructor is trying to deceive you, yet beneath the surface nonsense there is a method. Constructors may not mean what they say, but they say what they mean.
For example, “Standard item of office equipment (6)” has a definition of ‘Standard item’, and an explanation of ‘office equipment’. The ‘of’ is just to make the sentence grammatically logical. The explanation ‘office equipment’ is another definition of the solution. You need to think of a word for a ‘standard item’ that can also be a piece of office equipment. You come up with STAPLE. Geddit?
Basic Clue Structure
Another common clue type is an anagram. Here the compiler shows that you need to rearrange some of the letters in the clue to make a new word, such as STAR/ARTS, or ABSINTHE/THEBIANS. An anagram will always be indicated by some word that relates to change or disorder. There are loads of possible ones, but here are a few: smashed, confused, new, perhaps, arranged, disguised, could be…
Every cryptic clue is made up of two parts – definition and explanation. The definition is a synonym for, or semantic description of, the solution. The explanation finds some other way of describing the word. The first step in solving a clue is working out which bit is the definition, and which is the explanation. The definition could come at the beginning, or the end. (The definition never comes in the middle of an explanation, though) Secondly, you have to work out in what manner the explanation is working. Common Clue Types Synonym The simplest explanation type is a synonym. Here, the explanation is just another definition of the solution.
“World of broken heart (5)” Look for a word that could signal an anagram. ‘Broken’ seems a safe bet. This means you look for an anagram of ‘heart’ that means ‘world’. EARTH!
bit. For instance, POLLUTES is POLL and UTES.
“Furniture will annoy insect (6)”. Furniture (BED) will annoy (BUG) insect (BEDBUG).
“Arachnid saw her, so to speak (6)” Spied her: SPIDER? Close enough.
“Head of state overtakes the hits (5)”. Head of state (S – words like ‘head’ or ‘start’ or ‘chief’ mean the first letter) overtakes (LAPS) the hits (SLAPS).
The words will usually be in order (as above), but you might get words such as ‘before’ and ‘after’ which mean words need to be placed in a different order. “Unusual ward follows with take-out (4)” Here, ‘unusual’ means an anagram of ‘ward’ (DRAW). ‘Follows’ tells you to put it after the word WITH. Hey presto, WITHDRAW – take out! Reversal In these clues, you are told to reverse one or more of the words. “Satan has lived up (5)” – ‘up’ tells you to reverse the word ‘lived’ to get a synonym for ‘Satan’. Homophones
“Otherwise, the ache is feline (7)” The indicator here is ‘Otherwise’, so you need to find an anagram of ‘the ache’ that is a feline. CHEETAH? Well done!
Homophones are where one (group of) word(s) sounds like another. These are indicated by phrases such as ‘sounds like’, ‘we hear’ or ‘audibly’.
“Girl said to be in a book (4)” A girl’s name that sounds like part of a book? PAIGE – PAGE. You know it’s the second one because the answer is four
Here, the constructor spells out the solution bit by
YOUR GUIDE TO THE GRID, BY JIM FISHWICK
Finally, constructors can be a little loose with the way they define things, or with grammar. Yes, this means puns. These types of clue are indicated with a question mark. “Quickly appreciate the audience? (4,3,8)” LIKE THE CLAPPERS. “Get me away from Franz Ferdinand’s music? (4,2,3)” TAKE ME OUT. Final Tips Work with clues that are next to each other on the grid – don’t do all the across clues then all the down clues. Write your answers in capital letters. Work with a friend. Crosswords are more fun if you have a solving partner. And a cup of tea. Finally, some common abbreviations. ‘Model’ means ‘T’. ‘Direction’ can be ‘N’, ‘E’, ‘W’, ‘S’, or ‘NW’, ‘SE’, and so on. ‘Sailor’ is ‘AB’, ‘TAR’, or ‘SALT’. ‘Flower’ can mean a plant or a river. ‘Quiet’ is ‘P’. ‘Loud’ is ‘F’. The constructor’s name is ‘I’ or ‘ME’. ‘Solver’ is ‘YOU’. This is just a brief introduction to cryptics. For a more detailed guide, try guardian.co.uk/crosswords
S E L I F O R P E TH
Y K S M O H C M
wed NOA e i v r e t n i RATNE
In Catalonia, the ancient tradition of bullfighting elicits roars and gasps as the crowd wait impatiently for the humiliation of either man or beast. Like a bookish matador, Professor Noam Chomsky has long fanned the crimson cape of intellectual criticism in the face of the political establishment, brazenly inviting it to lower its parochial horns and charge him down. And charge it does, accusing Chomsky of the Socratic crimes of forswearing reasoned analysis and fabricating evidence, of having a biased agenda, and of the crime of anti-Americanism.
But with a rhetorical wink and an inflammatory nod, Chomsky has somehow managed to lithely dodge every fatal blow that has come his way, all the while delivering piercing injuries to established political orthodoxy and the United States in particular. For a man that could have died a thousand political deaths, Chomsky is extraordinarily mild and unassuming in person. Speaking to him on the phone from his office in the linguistics department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Boston, he apologises for being five minutes late with all the courteous humility of a media ingénue. In reality, he is hotly pursued by journalists, once lamenting that he spent an hour each night turning down lectures and interviews. The New York Times once said that Chomsky is “arguably the most important intellectual alive,” but qualified that with the gripe “since that’s the case, how can he write such terrible things about American foreign policy?” Linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, and activist, Chomsky was born in 1928 to Jewish parents in an affluent neighbourhood in Philadelphia. While describing his childhood neighbourhood as a “cultural ghetto”, Chomsky identified with libertarian socialism and anarchism from the early age of 12 or 13. He cites to me the horrors of the Great Depression, the rise of fascism and the Spanish Civil War as being catalytic events in his young life. Chomsky studied philosophy and linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania, where he later received his pHD in linguistics. He conducted part of his doctoral research during four years at Harvard University as a Harvard Junior Fellow, and was subsequently appointed to the staff of MIT. It was his critical commentary of the Vietnam War that first established Chomsky as a leader of political dissent. Armed with a pox-on-both-your houses outlook, Chomsky has tended to tended to evoke the beleaguered hero of an Orwellian novel, who faces a world divided into equally egregious totalitarian powers. Nonetheless, it is true that he tends to reserve his most caustic commentary for the United States, and I can’t resist diving headfirst into these noxious waters. I put it to him that the past ten years have been the 9/11 decade, book-ended by the collapse of the Twin Towers and the death of Osama. “Well … to a certain extent it is,” he agrees tentatively. But, he corrects me, “it wasn’t the ‘death’ of bin Laden, it was a murder.”
“The fascination of Bin Laden brought to a kind of symbolic end that aspect of the last decade, but it should make us think. One question one should ask is: was there an alternative to the reaction to 9/11?” he says. “I did at the time, and I still think there was.” Chomsky’s views on 9/11 are infamous. At the time of the bombings he was so overwhelmed by
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interview requests that he later published a book exclusively comprised of these interview transcripts. His unorthodox focus on the legitimate grievances of the Middle East against America and the crimes of America against the world have won him so many enemies. He receives undercover police protection while on campus at MIT. “There were very definite alternatives,” he tells me. “Not just the West lashing out and leading two wars which have completely destroyed Iraq and devastated Afghanistan. Those two countries—if they survive it’ll be a miracle, with huge casualties, destruction, horrible effects on the whole region. The Shi’a/Sunni conflict, which was a very brutal conflict, was elicited by the invasion of Iraq and has now spread over the whole region and the world.” “Let’s take some of the obvious things,” he continues, well rehearsed in patching together the pieces of his polemic puzzle. “The 9/11 attack was pretty harshly condemned within the jihadi movement itself, which offered an opportunity to split the movement, isolate bin Laden, and undercut whatever influence Al Qaeda was trying to gain throughout the world.”
Like it or loathe it, in making comments and comparisons like these, Chomsky makes a point about how we should judge human actions and intent, while using rhetoric to force us to uncomfortably confront our own assumptions. I ask Chomsky whether he sees nations like Australia as accomplices to these crimes, intimately tied as they are to American foreign policy. Is this what he means by American imperialism?
“Instead, the US followed bin Laden’s script. He was trying to draw the United States into a conflict with the Muslim world, which he describes as ‘a trap they will fall into’, in order to rally people to his cause. Yeah, I think that’s pretty much what the United States did.”
Chomsky is reluctant to afford us anywhere near the same degree of moral culpability. “Australia is not an agent of world affairs as the United States is,” he insists. “It doesn’t have a record on that scale.”
He offers me the example of the British treatment of the IRA as an example, and while the analogy is not apt in many ways (one could hardly see Bush sitting down with bin Laden to ‘understand his grievances’ in the wake of 9/11), this is part of Chomsky’s rhetorical gameplay. And he does it so damn well. Another loquacious game Chomsky famously plays is drawing confronting moral equivalences between the United States and popularly condemned figures. He recently wrote that George Bush was guilty of war crimes that greatly exceeded those of Osama bin Laden. I decide to test the limits of his audacity: does this hold true for Barack Obama as well? Firstly, Chomsky interrupts me as soon as I mention his claim about Bush being a bigger war criminal than bin Laden. “That much is obvious—it’s obvious!” he exclaims, before allowing me to continue. He is less vehement about Obama, but nonetheless assents to my question. “It holds true for Barack Obama as well,” he says. “He hasn’t been in office long enough to carry out the acts that Bush did but … with George Bush, it’s a truism. I mean, the fact that people in the West don’t understand, don’t see it, is a very harsh indictment of our own moral and intellectual culture.” Reflecting on his answer, Chomsky outlines what he sees as the difference between the two presidents. “In the case of Obama, he has certainly carried out serious crimes. He did change policies of the Bush administration. I mean the Bush administration, as has been pointed out by mainstream military commentator, kidnapped suspects and sent them off to prison camps—torture chambers basically, like Guantanamo. These are suspects, remember. There used to be a principle in the Western code of war of the presumption of innocence; you’re innocent untill you’re proven guilty in a court of law. That’s long gone. Now, under Bush: kidnap them, no matter which country, and send them to a torture chamber.” “Obama has changed that. Now, you know: kidnap them, then murder them. He’s launched a huge assassination campaign covering about half a dozen countries, in which suspects are simply murdered.”
However, he goes on to emphasise that, in our case, the actual record is not particularly attractive either. He reminds me of the impending anniversary of the Dili massacre in East Timor, and Australia’s role in recognising the Indonesian occupation of East Timor—something which he claims “came about as close to genocide as anything in the modern period.” He lambasts former Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans, champion of the Responsibility to Protect doctrine, for signing a deal with Indonesia to plunder the oil resources of the East Timorese people. In this, he suggests, Australia and the US share something common: “We can recognise that if one rich, powerful country invades a small neighbour and kills a quarter of its population and take its resources, that’s just fine.” I conclude by turning Chomsky’s eyes homeward. Seamlessly, as I’ve come to expect from a man who has written over 100 books on various sciences, politics and philosophies in his lifetime, he easily follows my direction. Is there a best case scenario for the 2012 election, I wonder? Chomsky is not hopeful. “There isn’t a good scenario right now, I’m afraid,” he says. Even Chomsky is thrown by the buffoonery of the Republican presidential nominees. “Some of these people are just off the spectrum,” he says. “I don’t think there’s been anything like it in the history of Western democracy.” He talks about the Republican candidate ahead of the polls at the moment, former pizza mogul Herman Cain, and his ‘9, 9, 9’ policy, of 9 percent income tax, 9 percent corporate tax, and 9 percent sales tax. “It takes about one minute to figure out that this policy could never be implemented without destroying the society. It would be a terrible blow against the poor, working people that are oppressed, and a huge gift to the super rich. It’s elementary, just work it out. But it’s very popular,” he says incredulously. “He’s at the top of the polls.” Obama, Chomsky believes, is not a whole lot better. “Obama is kind of a centre right figure, who’s mostly supported by the financial institutions, and works basically for them.” Crossing the political spectrum, he muses that “the Tea Party opinion is basically social democratic. They say
Having previously expressed a surprising degree of empathy for the causes, if not the solutions of the Tea Party movement, I ask him how far his sympathy extends. He is anxious to correct my supposition. “No, no, not at all. I understand their grievances, there are real grievances, but I think their positions are just outrageous. You can understand people’s grievances without being sympathetic to their goals. The Tea Party, it’s a pretty small movement. It’s inflated way out of proportion to its scale.” Chomsky talks about the disillusionment and frustration with the economic system, and the polarisation of wealth that has led to this situation. “So the Tea
Party is one kind of reaction to a situation like this. I think it’s an extremely dangerous reaction, but you can understand why Germans, let’s say, in the early 1930s—late 20s, early 30s—were very bitter and angry about the developments that were taking place. That doesn’t mean they’re sympathetic to the Nazis.” As an afterthought, Chomsky provides the caveat that the Tea Party and the Nazi Party are one and the same, but nonetheless I am interested in pushing this analogy further. Is he saying that disillusionment breeds extremism? “Can it breed extremism? It can—or it can breed highly constructive responses. So take the occupier movements which are taking place now, on Wall Street, and across the country. How they’ll play out you can’t predict, but these are very exciting and often inspiring developments of real popular forces—not like the Tea Party, but a civil experiment coming up with a very constructive set of objectives and demands. If that can be sustained, it could be of historic importance. [So] there are a lot of ways of reacting to crisis.”
Certainly, there is plenty to quarrel with when it comes to Chomsky. But the sheer skill and finesse with which he wields his rhetorical red cape, calmly weaving and winding around the enraged advances of the academy, is masterful and marvellous to watch. Struggle and scandal is perhaps what is needed to bring resistant and challenging ideas into the mainstream public debate, and to create a compelling space of dissent. But Chomsky does not seek followers. He wants everyone to see things for themselves, to think and judge for themselves. A critical spirit is what Professor Chomsky exalts above all else. As the interview wraps up, I thank Chomsky for his time, and wish him luck for his ‘future endeavours’, before laughing embarrassedly to myself at my awkward turn of phrase. Chomsky is kind, however. “Maybe I’ll see you there,” he says.
R E D W O R C D A R B
HANNAH RYAN goes behind bars to interview a controversial activist.
Bradley Crowder was 23 years old when he was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment for possessing an unauthorised firearm. That firearm was a Molotov cocktail, which he and his childhood friend David McKay made from ingredients they purchased at a Minnesota supermarket. The occasion was the 2008 Republican National Convention in Minnesota, where John McCain and Sarah Palin were nominated as the party’s candidates for the upcoming presidential election. Although Crowder and McKay never used the firebombs, they were labelled domestic terrorists. McKay is still serving his four-year sentence. How do you reach the point where you decided to make a Molotov cocktail? Crowder and McKay were raised as Republicans in Texas. Crowder says he grew up in a farming community out of town, basically on a dirt road—hardly breeding ground for activism. Although there wasn’t any sort of Leftist milieu in the area, Crowder claims he didn’t need to be victimised himself to become indignant at the racism he saw growing up. “There wasn’t really one trigger where it was like, ‘OK, well now I’m political’,” he says. “It was just over time I became really conscious of a lot of really horrible things that are going on in our world. What’s the point of learning about things if you’re not going to try to change them?” Crowder and McKay became involved in the Austin chapter of an activist group called the RNC Welcoming Committee. The name was ironic: the group’s purpose was to cause havoc at the upcoming Republican Convention. It was in the Welcoming Committee that they met Brandon Darby, a well-known Texas activist who had been heavily involved in relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina. Darby was somewhat of a hero in activist circles: tall and undeniably handsome with a deep voice, he even had a chiselled Superman-esque cleft in his chin. Darby was a good decade older than the other Welcoming Committee members, including McKay and Crowder, and he had by far the most organising experience and theoretical knowledge. He became a mentor figure for the younger activists. The Austin group made dozens of shields out of old garbage bins in preparation for the Convention and headed off to Minnesota. There were over 10,000 protesters in St Paul and a strong police presence. After spending the first day marching on the streets, the group returned to their van to find the police had broken into it and all of their shields had been taken. On the way, the police had searched the activists at
we should get rid of the government, but when they’re asked: ‘Do you want more spending on education?’ Yes. ‘More spending on health?’ Yes. ‘More spending on health for the poor?’ Yes. 70 percent are in favour of beating the deficit by higher taxes on the wealthy, and a very small percent support cutbacks to social programs. But the policy is by far the opposite.”
gunpoint. Frustrated, Crowder and McKay went to Walmart and made the Molotov cocktails. When the other members of the group found out, they objected, and asked Darby to help stop them. Meanwhile, Crowder and McKay had decided not to use the cocktails, instead leaving them in the basement as they went off to protest in the evening. Brandon Darby, it turns out, was an FBI informant. Like hundreds of other protesters that week, Crowder and McKay were arrested. Unlike most of those arrested, they were sentenced and imprisoned. All of this is the subject of the documentary Better This World, which recently screened at the Sydney Underground Film Festival. The film makes it clear that even though Crowder and McKay were really, really dumb for making firebombs in the first place, neither of them intended to use them and they both regret it immensely. According to Crowder, it’s possible to get to the point where you make a firebomb when you “get really frustrated and feel really hopeless and desperate.Once you start to feel that you start to lose grasp on what’s at stake, ideas that a few hours ago you would have thought were ridiculous and outrageous suddenly seem not so ridiculous. When the world seems crazy, crazy ideas seem a little bit more sane.” Crowder is articulate and intelligent. Two years in jail weren’t enough to put him off activism, either; he still calls himself an activist and an organiser. But what is activism in 2011? For him, the problem with the Republican National Convention was that it was devoid of mass content. The protesters largely came from the professional Left, people who were already into activism and did it as a hobby. Crowder describes the Convention as a “spectacle devoid of substance”. The activist model is something like the Arab Spring: the protesters in Tahrir Square weren’t just people who belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood or communist and socialist parties. They were regular workers and families who weren’t already ‘political’. “If we build mass movements in our communities, we can mobilise to give those mass protests legitimate mass content where it actually makes a difference,” Crowder explains. I’m sceptical. It sounds easier to politicise apolitical people in a country which is under the decades-long rule of an authoritarian president. Compared to Egypt, the United States does look like the paragon of freedom it claims to be. “I’d like to say it’s not hard but it seems to be actually really, really hard – otherwise we would have just done it. But I don’t think it’s that hard to
imagine.” Crowder talks enthusiastically about a number of fringe groups which have revolutionary potential: the unemployed, veterans, immigrants, people getting kicked out of their homes. “Even though you don’t see it, there’s this powder keg that is the United States that all of the glitter and gold is built upon,” he explains. The problem is just trying to organise that power. I ask Crowder where he sees himself in relation to capitalism – does he have a practical aim to overthrow it? “Inside but oppositional to,” he responds. “I’m inside capitalism, you can’t escape it, but I’m in opposition to the dynamics and structure of capital, the social relationships and phenomena that result from it.” The aim is to transform capitalism. That’s why Crowder objects to being called an anarchist. “You can have rebellions against capitalism in the process of constructing anarchism or in the process of constructing communism.’ Instead, he considers himself a left libertarian, libertarian socialist, libertarian communist. Crowder currently studies economics in Austin. He sees the subject as a weapon; he was to use that knowledge “to combat exploitation and capitalism.” In a strange twist, Brandon Darby is now a right-wing blogger. Crowder is dismissive: ‘That’s what happens when you don’t have any principles. You can just move around between any ideology that suits you personally.” Not only has he not spoken to Darby, but he hasn’t spoken to McKay in three years either. He is not legally allowed to talk to his friend until 2015 as a term of his release. Brad Crowder is infamous as a domestic terrorist. But he’s not everything that highly political word entails. He’s a young guy who made one huge mistake in an earnest quest to revolutionise the world for the better.
COMPREHENDING THE DE
ELEANOR GORDON-SMITH discusses the shocking over-representation of low IQ l June 21, 2011 was the Summer Solstice in the US. The farmers’ markets came to downtown New York. San Francisco closed its roads for a marathon. And at 6:53pm, the state of Texas executed Milton Mathis, a man with the mental age of a five year old. For John Stuart Mill, the death penalty’s most eloquent defender, there was only one counterargument worth considering; “that if by an error of justice an innocent person is put to death, the mistake can never be corrected.” But what do we mean by “innocent”?
A necessary component of guilt in the US is mens rea; an intention to commit the crime. Criminals with deficient mental faculties are therefore something of a conundrum. How can someone who needs help tying their shoes be capable of forming the requisite intent to commit a crime? The American Psychiatric Association defines ‘mental retardation’ in terms of an IQ score; anything below 70. That’s the normal functioning level of a young child. Adults at this level will often require help dressing themselves, struggle with communication and memory, and be unable to perform simple tasks. They almost uniformly struggle with understanding temporal causation, and very few are capable of moral reasoning. The intellectually disabled are dramatically over-represented in the US prison population. Though only 2.5% of the population, they make up 10% of inmates, and many are on death row. Oftentimes their crimes are heinous; gruesome rapes and murders – capital offences - frequently make the list. The problem is not in their conviction. The problem is in their sentencing. An IQ around or below 70 seriously complicates the moral culpability of the criminal. They simply don’t function at an adult level. Morris Mason, put to death in 1985, asked the prison warden on the way to his execution whether it would be okay to cry at his own funeral, and what he should wear. Ricky Ray Rector, killed in 1992,
didn’t want to eat the pecan pie in his last meal because he was “saving it for later.” Both were convicted of murder. But if you plainly don’t understand the nature or significance of death, you cannot have formed an intent to cause it. Robert Wayne Sawyer burned a woman alive in 1979, and during his clemency hearing was asked if he understood what a murder was. He replied “it’s when you stab someone and the breath leaves.” When asked a follow-up question about what would happen if someone was shot, he began to cry and said “I just don’t know.” He was executed by lethal injection. There seems to be something fundamentally cruel about executing people who plainly do not understand what is happening around them, let alone what they’ve done.
Ricky Ray Rector, killed in 1992, didn’t want to eat the pecan pie in his last meal because he was “saving it for later”. The proceedings in a capital trial are divided into two distinct phases. The first phase, like any criminal case, uses a jury to determine whether events unfolded as the prosecution says they did. Then, if the defendant is found to have committed the crime, the trial moves into the penalty phase in which the same jurors hear mitigating evidence designed to reduce the sentence. It is a keening plea to keep the defendant alive. This phase seems like the point at which an intellectual disability would come to the fore. An IQ of 70 or below is plainly grounds for mitigation; so why did so many cases slip through the cracks? Mitigation expert Scharlette Holdman thinks we overstate our ability to
guess other people’s IQs. The severely mentally disabled often endure lives of ridicule and difficulty; they learn to conceal their disability in order to get jobs and conduct daily business. These disguise mechanisms can be surprisingly effective, and juries and defence lawyers rarely think that someone appearing to function at a normal level might be just pretending. Carl Montoya, who had an IQ of 68, could not read. But when presented with a piece of paper with text on it, he had learned to move his eyeballs from left to right and count to thirty. On January 18, 1999, the piece of paper was his confession, and he signed it. Another common strategy is to smile - all the time. In day-to-day life this works well – people think you’re an affable, gentle buffoon. In front of a jury, you look like a sociopath. In 2001, House Bill 236 came before the Texas Legislature. It would have outlawed executing prisoners with an intellectual disability; the full text describes the measure as an attempt to recognise “the diminished moral and legal culpability of those suffering from mental retardation.” The bill was vetoed by Governor Rick Perry. He’s running for President. But in 2002, the Supreme Court of the US ruled executing intellectually disabled prisoners was unconstitutional, because it violated the eighth amendment’s prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment. The case was Atkins v. Viriginia, and the bench was split 6-3. This should have been the neat end to a grizzly chapter of US penal history. But it brings us back to where we started; Milton Mathis, executed this year – almost a decade after the Supreme Court decision. The International Justice Project estimates that sixty people have been executed since Atkins v Virginia, despite probable mental disability. One of the more poignant is James Lee Clark, killed in 2007 by the state of Texas, whose last word was “howdy.” Something, somewhere, has gone horribly wrong.
IQ levels on death row.
Prisoners who were sentenced before Atkins v. Virginia are not having their sentences overturned. If their sentencing hearing had been today, the jury could not hand down the death penalty. But prisoners who were sentenced to death pre-2002 still meet that fate in 2011. It doesn’t have to be like this; the governor of any state can commute a death sentence based on a Supreme Court decision. Rick Perry knows this because the first death-sentenced inmate Perry commuted to life without parole was a man called Robert Lee Johnson, who the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles said (6-0) was protected by Atkins v. Virginia. Not all the intellectually disabled on death row have been so lucky. Another problem is in the accuracy of the IQ tests themselves. Atkins v. Virginia did not specify an IQ-point threshold at which a prisoner was deemed mentally retarded; just that if they were, they could not be executed. This means that states like Utah which do not have an official bracketing of IQ scores are able to make arbitrary and inconsistent decisions about who to execute. The system is also open to what’s called the Flynn Effect; the fact that humankind is, collectively, getting better at IQ tests with each generation. To keep the average score at 100, we make the standard IQ test harder at the end of every decade. This means that two inmates with equivalent mental abilities could take tests either side of the recalibration; one could deliver a score above 70 and one below 70, since one test would be substantially harder. This recalibration is useful for determining which preschoolers to let into exclusive grammar schools; rather more concerning when a life is at stake. A final problem rests on the trust we place in the administrators of these IQ tests. Correctional facilities have their own in-house psychologists and translators to perform IQ tests on defendants. You would be right to smell bias in
these proceedings. The test that is used by most correctional facilities (including the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification State Prison, where Troy Davis was executed) is called the Cattell Culture Fair III Test. It routinely delivers results 5-10 points higher than its competitors: the Stanford-Binet Test or Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale. The dangers of such a vested interest were given a face and name in George Denkowski; a Fort Worth psychologist used by Harris County to look for signs of intellectual disability in 28 prisoners charged with capital murder. Denkowski used his own criteria in IQ tests, falsified results, and employed translators for Hispanic defendants who would hint at the correct answers to help bolster their scores, pushing them into the bracket of scores that meant they could be executed. He was investigated and dismissed earlier this year, but his “findings” had already contributed to 17 executions that could – and should – have been prevented.
One of the more poignant is James Lee Clark, killed in 2007 by the state of Texas, whose last word was “howdy”. Something, somewhere, has gone horribly wrong. Australia hasn’t used capital punishment since 1967, so no intellectually disabled prisoner here faces that possibility. But the issue of basic moral culpability remains a problematic one. There are the usual problems of overrepresentation behind bars and the struggle to detect IQs around or below 70, but one interesting and unique problem has arisen in
Australia; juvenile defenders with borderline intellectual functioning. The Australian institute of Criminology found in February this year that more juvenile offenders have intellectual disabilities than adult offenders. Three percent of the Australian public has an intellectual disability and one percent of adults incarcerated in New South Wales prisons was found to have an IQ below 70. But a study of over 800 inmates at juvenile detention facilities showed that 17 percent had an IQ below 70. This over-representation is particularly high among indigenous offenders and among minors hailing from rural or low socioeconomic backgrounds, where detection and treatment are rarely possibilities. IQs around or below 70 are often misdiagnosed in the young – the behavioural difficulties they produce can be misconstrued as symptoms of behavioural or antisocial disorders such as manic depression - which are treated differently by courts at the point of sentencing. Incarcerating the intellectually disabled at such a young age is unlikely to help their condition or their relationship with the state; but at the same time, their crimes are often heinous and their victims very real. Intellectually disabled juvenile prisoners have one of the highest rates of recidivism of any criminal demographic in Australia. Something isn’t going right. The persistent and terrible fear that we might execute an innocent person has haunted jurors and lawmakers for decades. The Troy Davis case made that much clear. Any legal or moral conception of “guilt” does not extend to criminals who do not understand simple arithmetic, let alone their own actions. Yet despite Atkins v. Virginia, intellectually disabled prisoners are still being executed by the dozen; the safeguards in place to protect the innocent are broken. 17 prisoners in the US with an IQ of 70 or below remain on death row. The next one is scheduled to be executed in December this year. His name is Floyd, and he can’t use a fork.
There are a few factors in play.
a chat with JENNY KEE
NEADA BULSECO talked LSD, Lennon and life lessons with the artiste par excellence.
Jenny Kee is a name synonymous with Australian fashion, self-described as “not artist, but artiste.” Her revolutionary approach to fashion brought art and experiment to the fore of design, divorcing it from the previous days of monotone and two-pieces. Kee’s designs are still widely coveted today, as hipsters and fashion enthusiasts harken back to the original days of expressive fashion. She conceived Australiana, pioneered the clash of colour, slept with John Lennon and broke all of the rules. Jenny Kee is one hell of a lady, and it seems, after nearly fifty years in the industry, there’s no slowing down. Jenny, you were there when youth culture really hit Australia. I can’t imagine how exciting that time would have been.
Soon after you returned, you opened your store, Flamingo Park, and that just grew incredibly quickly.
Well, of course it was exciting. It was so ground breaking that we were part of this … this thing. I mean, there’s a reason people listen to Jimi Hendrix and still think he’s a genius. There’s a reason for that - because this was a new world that was being created. And it was crazy, and it was drug-ridden, and there was, you know, lots of acid, but it was also very revolutionary. And I’m a result of that. And I’m alive, and I’m healthy, and I can tell the tale.
It just took off. The shop was original and I knew after London that I had to create something that actually was original, like nothing else. So Flamingo Park was born in 1973. It had sand-blasted mirrors; it was exotic, it was romantic. The whole feel of it, swaying with plastic palm trees and pink flamingos. It had sort of a retro feel but everything was made new.
You famously met the Beatles and slept with John Lennon. Was this what prompted your move to London?
After Flamingo Park took off, you were soon recognised as one of the definers of Australian fashion. You had your work published in Italian Vogue and prints used by Chanel.
(laughs) No, no. It was part of that whole mod thing. The Beatles personified the whole thing. So, you know, they just made all of us, young people, because we were only 17, made us know that we had to get to London
It was just part of the cause. We knew we were doing very groundbreaking and innovative work, creating from the Australian land, being totally original in our vision. It was very, very exotic to Italy, and to Paris.
How did it change your perception of the world?
How far do you think the Australian fashion industry has come since the 1960s?
We hit London and it was all starting to happen. I just maybe landed at the beginning of things, and that was all extremely exciting. But then the whole thing with retro started, and while Portobello road was always there, wearing granny’s clothes wasn’t. There’s a reason stores like Grandma Takes A Trip started, because you were wearing granny’s clothes and there was this thing called LSD. I was working with my mentor Verne Lambert, who pioneered retro. He was one of the great pioneers of retro fashion. So why did you come back to Australia?
the arts bit
Because the magic was starting to fade and we just wanted to take a little, quick look at what Sydney was like, because we came from there. And, seven years later, Whitlam got in and creativity in this country was happening. Friends were making movies, and artists were doing amazing happenings, and we felt excited by being in Sydney, just like I’d felt excited by landing in London.
Beachwear is our strength. Having said that, there’s such incredible talent in this country in a more artistic way. Like Akira, and now we’ve got Romance Was Born, we’ve got Josh Goot.
with me, creating your own personal style, having a library to look at of fashion in the world. So, constant experimentation? Constant. That is what makes great style. You jumpers have become iconic. When the Southeasterly blows in, should we expect to see you in one? Would you see me in a knit? Oh, of course! These knits look like they were done today. That’s all I ever wanted to create! Something that transcends generations? Something that stands the test of time. And, when I’m 90, I’ll say I stood the test of time. I’ll say I still have this passion, and this energy. And you know, I’m a much older person but the energy feels like when I was much younger. I’ve just got this beautiful scarf line up and running and I feel like I’m back in the 60s. So, you said that you’re currently working on this line of scarves. Is this your only current project? What’s keeping you busy? Cleaning and getting up my new blog site! And, yes, well the scarves are a fantastic finale and round up of me from the ‘60s to now. So I love that!
So, do you think there is further room for development in fashion?
If you could turn back the clock, would you change anything? Do you have any regrets?
Always. Because I’m not the commercial person, I’m the innovator, so I just always would like to see integrity and passion being the roots of one’s creative work.
No, I have none. If you can transform all of the suffering that you’ve had in your life, whether it be a business failing or relationships crashing, if you can transform that and see that as your past awakening then you don’t want to change anything, darling. Because your mistakes are who you are, and that’s what makes you.
You entered the fashion industry in the 1960s, studying design at East Sydney Tech as a teenager. How has your personal style changed since then? London was my awakening. When I got there, I did change. We’d get a ‘20s print, adding a little bit of, let’s say something like a Ballet Russe costume from Sotheby’s. We put things together from all different periods of time. That is probably what has stayed
Amen, Jenny. Amen. Peruse the scarves of a woman who remembers what it means to be young at jennykee.com. Her blog will be up next month!
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LAURENCE ROSIER STAINES ran away from the time police. He did not survive. Every episode of Adult Swim cartoon Superjail! opens with a reprobate petty criminal named Jacknife committing some harebrained vicious crime, before being violently subdued by a single-minded robot with extensive collateral damage. This robot then transforms into a helicopter and carries Jacknife trough a series of chaotic fantasy environments to a volcano inside another volcano where the laws of time and space do not apply. So begins the most insane cartoon ever.
couple of roller-skating possibly-alien tech wizard anarchists known as the Twins, who can teleport at will. This usually results in events spiralling out of control into a dizzying melee of ultraviolence, with prisoners, piranhas, demon pirates, giant squid, immortal fighting machines, murderous cafeteria workers, bats, motorbikes, chainsaws, giant knives, radioactive monsters and basically anything else. Dozens die horribly in a nihilistic but glorious spectacle of colour.
The eponymous Superjail is run by the Warden, an excitable and narcissistic Dr Seuss/Willy Wonka character who impulsively guides the fortunes of his clearly magical institution and is in love with Alice, a transgender prison guard. As the Warden’s eternally terrified secretary Jared struggles with the consequences of his decisions, things are routinely complicated by a
The 11-minute episodes play out as stream-ofconsciousness insanity, as if the animators wrote a one-line plot synopsis, took a whole lot of LSD then just watched what happened to their already deeply unhinged characters. The results are hilariously perverse and totally energising, producing perhaps the only cartoon where it really seems like anything at all might happen at any minute.
Not pictured: colour
The anarchy apparently couldn’t keep pace with itself and, just like when the Marx Brothers moved from Paramount to MGM, the proceedings are significantly tamer in the second season; unnecessary exposition, character development and narratives suddenly get in the way of the volatility. The newer episodes aren’t bad, but they aren’t as great either. With this in mind, Honi Soit shuns the faint-hearted and recommends the amoral first season of Superjail!
X THE TUNES: ALBUMS YOU SHOULD HAVE HEARD THIS YEAR 8 abde8abde8 SHANNON CONELLAN fronts the home turf.
JULIAN VAN DER ZEE seeks tunes from across the seas.
Boy and Bear – Moonfire
tUnE-yArDs — w ho k i l l
Not a young rapscallion and his grizzly friend, no! Boy and Bear, the five piece Shins-esque band from Sydney are the word on many a musical street. You may know these boys and bears from their Like A Version cover of Crowded House’s ‘Fall At Your Feet’, which made its mark at #5 on the Triple J Hottest 100 in January this year. Finally dropping their debut album Moonfire in August this year, these Sydney kids sure know how to pluck at the acoustic heartstrings. They’ve picked up seven ARIA nominations, have sold out most of their Moonfire national tour and impressed Laura Marling so much she invited them on her UK tour. Top track: ‘Milk & Sticks’
With a personality bright enough to light up the entire musical underground Merrill Garbus, the one woman powerhouse behind avant-pop group tUnE-yArDs, has produced one of the year’s most audacious, provocative and downright infectious albums. With a chameleonic voice that has been likened to Joplin, Simone, Carey and even Plant, Garbus coos, howls and screeches her way through ten distinctly unique tracks that recall elements of acoustic folk, jazz, funk and afro-pop. One of the most audacious and savagely unique albums of this year, and bound to trigger a cult following. Top track: ‘Gangsta’
Seekae - +DOME
Bon Iver — Bon Iver
Sydney duo Alex Cameron and George Nicholas found each other in 2006 after spending many years in the old schoolyard in different friend groups. Five years and one hit-it-outof-the-ball-park EP later, Seekae finally released their debut album +DOME in March this year. +DOME is one suave journey into the far reaches of your ambient refrigerator, full to the crisper of tantalising electronica. If you haven’t yet met Seekae, here’s a tip. Fill your glasses, fill your headphones and fill your mind with +DOME and thank me in the morning when your musical hangover is found wanting. Top track: ‘Blood Bank’
So by now we should all know the story behind Bon Iver’s debut For Emma, Forever Ago; of the winter band frontman, Justin Vernon, holes up in a snowed-in cabin in northwest Wisconsin and writes an ode to lost love and regret in the ultimate act of emotional catharsis. How does one even begin to approach topping that? Well, increase your personnel roster (bring in the insanely talented Baritone Saxist, Colin Stetson, for one) and then introduce some horns, strings and synths to give your album a more atmospheric, spacious sound. The result? Everything you loved about For Emma... but better. Top track: ‘Holocene’
Blasko, Throsby and Seltmann, assemble! The closest thing Australia has to an all girl group since Bardot, the three First Ladies of Aussie folk united in what appeared to be a Holy Trinity as brought to you by Frankie Magazine. Sarah Blasko, Holly Throsby and Sally Seltmann, established names in their own right, decided to pull their whimsical resources together to create their self-titled debut album, an incredibly wondrous patchwork of heartfelt warm fuzzies. Top track: Even Though I’m A Woman
Royal Headache – Royal Headache The lads from Sydney’s Royal Headache have graduated from playing live at parties in Redfern backyards to being played on radios in backyards Australia-wide. Their self titled debut LP was recorded in one day, with the help of Aussie music mastermind Mikey Young of Eddy Current Suppression Ring. Royal Headache is one fast and furious celebration of lo-fi garage rock at its finest, the result of every set played between 2009-2010. Top track: ‘Surprise’
The Middle East – I Want That You Are Always Happy The band that just couldn’t keep it together; the softly sung collective from Townsville peaked at ten members strong and split up twice. But my giddy aunt, did they make good music. The Middle East unleashed their first full length album I Want That You Are Always Happy in April this year. The result was a 14-track endeavour into folk worthy of the thickest forest, complete with minstrel-esque acoustic melody and hushed falsetto harmonies. Unfortunately, the band would split up four months later after the release of the album, playing their last show ever at Splendour In the Grass in July. Top track: ‘Black Death 1349’
Other notable mentions: Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu - Rrakala, The Jezabels – Prisoner, Illy – The Chase, Zoë Badwi – Zoë, Papa Vs Pretty – United In Isolation
Lady Gaga encapsulates everything there is to love and despise about America- a culture of excess built on traditions of free-speech and rampant individualism. While her breakthrough album offered little to back-up her self-proclaimed ‘artiste’ status her more recent creative work has been noticeably more provocative, and as an advocate for gay rights Born This Way has even managed to ruffle a few feathers in religious circles (but how hard is that to do really?) Something of a guilty pleasure, but I’ll take Gaga over Perry any day of the week. Top track: ‘Government Hooker’
Iceage — New Brigade What will the Danes be most well remembered for in ten years time? Having Europe’s oldest monarchy? I sure hope not. Inventing Lego? Closer to the mark. I’ll go out on a limb here and claim it will be Iceage, a band of angry young men who make raw, messy, exhilarating punk, combining elements of hardcore and good ol’ fashioned rock ‘n’ roll. Hardly revolutionary but damn do they do it well. Top track: ‘Broken Bone’
Battles — Gloss Drop Battles are one of those supergroups whose members hail from bands you have probably never even heard of (Don Caballero, Lynx and Helmet anyone?) and yet all are virtuosos at their instruments. Gloss Drop follows on from their critically lauded debut Mirrored, keeping the intrinsic sense of experimentation that defines their sound (rapidly changing time-signatures and computerized, cartoonish vocals and guitars) and gives it all a pop sheen. Excellent vocal performances from some big name guests such as electro-god Gary Numan, give this programmed, head-trip of an album a human quality. Top track: ‘Ice Cream (ft. Matias Aguayo)’
Other albums for your 2011 Playlist:
Special mention: Gotye – Making Mirrors If you made your way through the past few months without happening upon a little tune dubbed ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ from Gotye’s Making Mirrors, you’re an envied young whippersnapper. The ‘Baa Baa Black Sheep’ glock solo and better-than-Gotye-Kimbra bit follow the best of us into house parties and Westfield change rooms.
THE BOX The
Lady Gaga — Born This Way
James Blake - James Blake, The Weeknd - House of Balloons, Jay-Z & Kanye West - Watch the Throne, Laura Marling - A Creature I Don’t Know, Blink 182 - Neighborhoods
the arts bit
Seeker Lover Keeper – Seeker Lover Keeper
JAMES COLLEY analyses the analysers of analysis ... or something. The Chaser’s latest venture The Hamster Wheel sees the team abandoning the tried-and-true format of shouting things at people in the news to take a more mature look at news media. The show has moments of incredible potential and fantastically intelligent news analysis, which makes some of the more immature jokes just disappointing. The news commentary is spot on and easily the highlight of the show. Clearly inspired by The Daily Show, the Chaser team has set their sights on the newscycle above the news itself. It’s an interesting choice to target the Australian media. In many respects, our media outlets are poor imitations of their American counterparts. With the news for
the last three months being stuck on the same stale arguments about the Carbon Tax it’s difficult to get a fresh, interesting perspective on the same story. The Hamster Wheel really gets going when it abandons the constant gagging that punctuates the show to take a more in depth look at a contemporary issue. The section on ‘Muslims in the Media’ in the second episode was a pertinent example of just how good the show can be when it drops the cheaper gags and provides a more driven analysis of news media. The sketches are hit and miss. They can be funny, but occasionally the satire is a bit weak and the idea missed or outdated. Some of the sketches are clearly timefillers and seem like easy jokes that they seemed to
have outgrown after CNNNN. The recurring Rupert Murdoch interview is never particularly clever and pales in comparison to the other commentary. It’s a small mercy that the team has stated there will be no pranks in this series. The real issue with the gag-heavy cheaper sections of the show aren’t that they aren’t funny (they aren’t, but that’s not the issue). It’s that these less mature bits shake the credibility of the show. The Chaser team have a very sharp eye, and their analysis ability deserves recognition, but they compromise the higher ground with easy gags. It’s not that they shouldn’t be silly. It’s that it’s often cheap, and when the jokes are too easy the deeper point gets lost.
#OCCUPY The world SHEILA MONAGHAN occupies herself with Occupy Wall Street, the fastest-moving movement around. I’d just scrolled past another bunch of photos on my tumblr dash of people holding up bits of paper narrating their economic hardship. I’d laughed when I came across the first one: “oh look,” I thought, “a tertiary-educated, ablebodied and able-minded, cisgender white person with the time to tumbl is upset by something.” But then I read the second a little more closely and by the third, fourth, fifth and sixth I realised I had no idea what I was looking at. “We are the 99%,” they all said.
The occupation has stuttered and limped towards its current mass, helped into the limelight by baseless arrests and allegations of police brutality - most of it caught in high definition, uploaded, retweeted and reblogged. And like many of the Twitter and tumblr posts, #OWS has gone viral. #OccupyTogether is the banner under which numerous other occupations are organising: #OccupyBoston, #OccupySanAntonio, #OccupyStLouis, Dallas, Kansas City, Seattle, Atlanta, Cheyenne, London, Rome, Montreal, Auckland, Sydney,
Leaderless and lacking explicit demands, #OccupyWallStreet is a cacophony of voices. Protest placards range from the incomprehensible (“Angry Fascists Are Dead Inside”) to the refreshingly straightforward (“The Financial District Is Responsible For Most Of The Poverty And Suffering On This Planet!”) and they canvas a range of issues, including censorship via a caricature of the incarcerated Bradley Manning, the environment, and the wages of pilots.
Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and over 1,435 other cities around the world including one in Idaho. Idaho. But what do 99% of people want? #Occupy is a journalistic nightmare. Nominally at least, there are no official representatives, no coherent demands, and the posters and the twitter feed emphasise that they organise under no single –ist, -ism or -ian. There is no easy framing, and no uncomplicated point of comparison - no simple way to explain that something that started as a single post on the internet on July 13th has somehow become this dotted global landscape of placards. That’s the striking thing about this ‘movement’; as an aggregate, it is not representative of anyone, because it is not attempting to be an aggregate. The individuals involved have their own reasons and their own politics; they do not expect their demands to be the same as the person next to them.
Today, our experience of politics is different. It’s becoming clear that the divisive nature of political ideologies no longer remains. Aspirations can transcend the boundaries of political allegiance to create unity among the masses. The idea that a person could subscribe wholly to a totalising political philosophy is fading, despite the influence of postmodernity. The idea that a single party is capable of supporting the interests of all those it claims to represent might still resonate with some, but it is no longer a defining characteristic of politics. Hashtags work because they are a means of organisation. They are a way to have a conversation. From what I can tell, the merit of #OWS is in the processes it adheres to, in the way communicative space is made for everyone and no one speaks for anyone.
Mainstream media commentary has been quick to highlight #OWS’s lack of stated principles and call that its greatest weakness. But perhaps this lack of stated principles is tapping into a wider dissatisfaction with organised politics generally. It is the very vacuum of explicit ideology that allowed #OccupyWallStreet to become #OWS and then #OccupyTogether and #OccupyEverywhere.
The Many Sadnesses of
The Hardy Boyz, née Team Extreme, embodied one very specific part of the ‘90s. With their S-over-Z attitude (‘tude) and lank, greasy hair they were the darlings of the World Wrestling Federation’s tag team division. From their start at the Trampoline Wrestling Federation (which, notably, was exactly what it sounds like) they worked their way up the WWF ranks to five Tag Team Championship reigns. While those championship wins were indeed scripted they signified that at that point in time the Hardy Boyz were sure-fire money earners and the most entertaining duo in the company. They climbed ladders to retrieve title belts, suitcases and giant sacks of money. They crashed through tables and hit each other with chairs. They did huge flips and dives and had their name chanted by stadiums full of people. Literally full of people! They were damn good professional wrestlers, whatever that means. Professional wrestling is an art form. It’s not art, but it is an art form, the same art form as telling a story to any crowd but vamped up to eleven and strangled down to catchphrases and comic book physiques: easyto-track steroid abuse in the men, near-mandatory breast implants in the women. Looking at the genre on a show-to-show basis it becomes clear this is a grown-up pantomime, a Victorian performance where the audience sings along with the actor’s catchphrases (“Suck it!”).
In the most general terms, it’s the narcissism and insecurity of the porn industry, the car-crash injuries and charisma of college football and the touring schedule of a rock band. Looked at in the long-term, it’s the saddest business alive.
TOM WALKER gets in the squared circle and trades powerbombs for truth bombs. - finally - universally blacklisted. Chris Benoit, two-time World Champion, killed his wife, his son and himself at 40, leaving behind a corpse showing brain damage consistent with cases of severe dementia in concussion-heavy retired NFL players. Eddie Guerrero, former world champion, was fired for drugs like Jeff Hardy, cleaned himself up except for an ‘acceptable’ painkiller addiction then died at 38, his body giving out from decades of steroids, drugs and injuries. The man the industry had held up as its best recovery story died brushing his teeth.
World Champions Chris Benoit and Eddie Guerrero celebrating at the end of Wrestlemania XX, 2004. By 2005, Guerrero was dead of heart failure. In 2007 Benoit killed his wife, his son and himself.
The Hardy Boyz no longer work for the WWF (now the WWE after losing a suit against the World Wildlife Fund). Jeff Hardy has been arrested for drug possession once and fired twice: first from the WWE as a result of his refusal to attend rehab, then from TNA (a secondrate televised show funded by an energy giant) for no-showing one of their major events. He’s frequently in “no condition to perform.” Most recently he appeared on TNA again in the closing match of a Pay-Per-View. That’s the kind of match that usually goes for more than twenty minutes and features numerous false finishes, but he lost in one and a half minutes, sluggish and clearly drugged. Sting, his opponent, clearly called the match in the ring with officials, pinned Jeff with his body weight and stifled Jeff’s struggles to break the pin. Matt Hardy has posted hoax suicide messages on YouTube, posted a video of himself and Jeff shocking his girlfriend with a taser and was most recently arrested for drug possession and trafficking in addition to his two recent
DUIs. The same girlfriend he tasered called 911 saying that he was “strung out on pills and needed help”: police found hypodermics, pills, anabolic steroids, and Hardy himself in an intoxicated state. It’s been a train wreck in ultra slow motion. The Hardys are one example from an industry that breeds failures, but they’re indicative of how those failures come to be. Wrestlers have a tendency towards substance abuse. Some use steroids to chase the physiques they need to advance their careers, many use recreational drugs to supplement the lifestyle, and more use painkillers or marijuana to dull the pain of constant falls, grinding schedules and mounting injuries as they put off surgery for fear of losing their spots. Scott Hall, two-time world champion, has followed his alcoholism to its bitter end and burnt everyone in the wrestling industry who tried to reach out to him. He had a spell of no-shows, fell asleep at autograph signings and slurred his way through interviews until he was
It’s a sad, grinding demise, staying in the business. Pain medication (legal or illegal) is seemingly inevitable and the ones who ‘made it’ are the ones who got out while they still could like Stone Cold Steve Austin (retired due to debilitating neck and knee injuries), Chris Nowinski (a Harvard graduate focussing research on concussions in sports and pro-wrestling) and Rob Van Dam (runs a comic book shop). Wrestlers die young and often. Retired, they run gyms, wrestling schools or just fade into obscurity in menial jobs. The Wrestler, the movie that captured so much of the anguish of being Mickey Rourke, was able to capture a small amount of the sadness of professional wrestling. What it didn’t show was young wrestlers, desperate to get noticed, pushing themselves to wrestle more and more dangerously with more and more injuries. In an industry caught between the real and the pretend, the consequences of a single misstep are entirely real: concussions lead to brain damage, slips lead to broken necks and the impact of simple moves performed regularly breaks down knees and joints. Becoming a comic book character is often more than the human body can bear.
How to Avoid Getting Scammed A scam is a trick to take you money directly or indirectly by getting your personal details. There are new, imaginative scams being hatched everyday. They target even students and come in many forms including, but not limited to by mail, e-mail, telephone and door-to-door. Fake websites can easily be set up to look like the real thing. Anything that seems too good to be true probably is. Giving your personal details to anyone should be handled with a large degree of caution. For example, how many websites have you supplied you name, address and date of birth to, in order to win a competition? Myth: Scams only involve large amounts of money Fact: Some scammers target large numbers of people for small amounts of money. It all adds up to a lot if they succeed Myth: Scams are always about money Fact: Some scams try to steal your personal information to sell or get more than just your money Myth: Governments vet all companies and businesses, therefore any offers you receive are from legitimate organisation Fact: Scammers are criminals. They act illegally and can contact you from anywhere in the world.
What types of scams are out there? Scammers will try a number of ways to get your money or personal information, these include: Lotteries, sweepstakes and competitions – these scams will tell you that you have won a competition or lottery and will try to trick you into handing over your banking and personal details in order to claim the prize. Remember, if you haven’t entered, you can not win. Money transfer requests – these scams usually involve helping the scammer transfer funds through your account, in return you will receive a fee. You will be asked to supply your banking and personal details to complete the transaction, but the money will not be deposited in your account and the
scammer has your details. Banking, credit card and online account scams – these scams aim to get you to hand over your banking and personal information by sending you emails, often saying they are from your bank, asking you to verify your account details, including your password. Identity theft – is a type of fraud which involves the theft of your identity by obtaining enough of your personal details allowing the person to impersonate you when dealing with financial institutions etc. Mobile phone scams – these scams will usually call or send you a message on your mobile phone offering you a service. When you reply you may purchase a service that you don’t want or can’t stop. This usually leads to huge mobile phone bills. Beware of ring tone offers that can also lead to you unknowingly agreeing to further unwanted ring tones, which will cost you more money. Pyramid scams – these types of scams rely on the recruitment of members. Members will pay a fee to join, with the membership fees paid to another member who will be paid out of the scheme. Once people stop joining, members stop getting paid out and if you are caught in the pyramid you will lose your money. Golden investment opportunities – usually these scams will offer you investment opportunities based on secret inside knowledge they have, all you have to do is provide banking and personal details to sign up. You could also be offered early access to your super or promised large tax deductions or refunds. Online gambling – these scams usually involve betting on horses, but could include other forms of gambling, through a computerised system. Some people have paid up to $20,000 for the system only to find it didn’t work and they had lost their money. Health and medical scams - these scams offer products or services that will cure your health problems or offer a simple treatment. These cures and treatments do not work.
How do I avoid scams? Follow these golden rules to avoid being scammed:
• Don’t respond to offers, deals or requests for your personal details. Stop. Take time to independently check the request or offer. • Never send money or give credit card, account or other personal details to anyone who makes unsolicited offers or requests for your information. • Don’t rely on glowing testimonials: find solid evidence from independent sources (not those provided with the offer). • Never respond to out of the blue requests for your personal details. • Always type in the address of the website of a bank, business or authority you are interested in to ensure you are logging into the genuine website. • Don’t open unsolicited emails. • Never click on a link provided in an unsolicited email as it will probably lead to a fake website designed to trick you into providing personal details. • Never use phone numbers provided with unsolicited requests or offers as it probably connects you to fakes who will try to trap you with lies. • Don’t reply to unsolicited text messages from numbers you don’t recognise. • Always look up phone numbers in an independent directory when you wish to check if a request or offer is genuine. • Don’t dial a 0055 or 1900 number unless you are sure you know how much you will be charged.
What if I’m scammed, who do I report it to? If the scam originates from NSW or you know the name of the business or trader and they are located in NSW, you can report the scam to NSW Fair Trading online through Lodge a complaint, call 13 32 20 or in person at one of our Fair Trading Centres. If the scam originates from outside NSW or overseas you can report it via SCAMwatch. SCAMwatch is a website run by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and provides information to consumers and small businesses about how to recognise, avoid and report scams. For more information, visit www. scamwatch.com.au
Did you know? You can borrow University approved calculators from the SRC for your exam. During the exam period the SRC is open from 8.30am-5.00pm.Bring your student card to borrow one. Available to undergraduate students only. Level 1 (basement level, underneath the footbridge), Wentworth Building, City Road, Darington Campus. Phone: 02 9660 5222
Q & A with students who need help and a dog who has all the answers... Send letters to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Abe, My house sucks. It is damp most of the time, even when it’s sunny. Since we haven’t seen much sun lately you can understand how frustrating this is. What can I do about this? I’d like the landlord to fix it, but I don’t want to get kicked out for being a whinger. Damp House.
Dear Damp House, I had a similar problem in my kennel due to a leaking roof. At the time I learnt that just like I need chocolate to live, mould needs moisture to grow. Mould thrives in the right environment, and it sounds as though it likes your house. If your living room walls get a lot of moisture when it rains, then this suggests there may be something that needs repairing. Most landlords who care about their property, or the property they’re managing, will want to deal with the problem. If your landlord ignores or refuses to address the problem they may still have an obligation to do so, under the Residential Tenancies Act. I’d suggest you advise your landlord in writing of the problem, keep a copy of this letter and any further correspondence. If it’s not resolved at this stage, then come and have a chat with a caseworker at the SRC. We can give you advice on your options and rights as a tenant. You need to be aware, that besides spreading easily and being unsightly, mould in the home can also impact on your health so it’s best to try and sort this out sooner rather than later. In the meantime, make sure you keep your rooms well-ventilated, and don’t do any rain dances. Abe
Meeting of the Representatives-elect of the 84th SRC Wednesday 2nd November, 6pm, Refectory Room Main Quadrangle The meeting of the Representatives-elect is solely for the election of office bearers and committees of the 84th SRC. All positions shall be elected from members of the undergraduate student body, or from elected Representatives of the 84th Council. For information about the meeting of the Representatives-elect or to request a nomination form please contact the Secretary to Council, Claire McClure by emailing email@example.com
So you think you can’t be scammed? Well we’ve heard that before.
V PRESIDENT’S REPORT Well, this is the last Honi report I’ll ever write. After two years of having a weekly column (and not even getting to skip reports for the autonomous editions!) it’s a strange feeling knowing that there won’t be any Sunday night/Monday morning panicked Honi report writing ever again (sorry about the late reports eds!), but what a way to end the year! We’ve had possibly the biggest week in politics in recent history with the passage of a price on carbon, a move towards onshore processing of refugees, and most importantly for student organisations, the passage at long last of the Student Services and Amenities Fee through the Senate! This will be a slightly self-indulgent report with a review of some of the things we’ve done this year and thank yous to those who made it possible, so bear with me.
through last year, when I was General Secretary. I worked hard with Elly (the then President) and Phil (the then Vice President) on developing proposals, models, and constitutions, but it was only in about March this year that everything was finalised. The SLS has enabled us to provide a 5 day a week legal service which is free for students to access and is student centred in its delivery. We’ve undertaken a huge range of cases, and I think there is plenty of room for the SLS to expand - finishing of the Strategic Plan is on my to do list for the next month and a half. The SLS is a unique service, being the first (and currently only) student-run legal service in the country, and I’m really excited about having been involved in its development - it’s been an amazing learning experience and I think it’s a service which genuinely improves the life of students here at Sydney.
I will be meeting with the University, along with the presidents/heads of other student organisations to discuss the distribution of revenue from the SSAF this Thursday, after which we’ll have a much better idea of how the University intends to spend the fee it will be collecting as of next year.
Thanks to the lobbying of the National Union of Students both this year and in years past, and the activists who ran and the students who participated in the “Students’ Money to Students” campaign, the Bill was passed with amendments ensuring that democratically elected student representatives have a seat at the negotiating table. I will be spending a lot of the remainder of my term working on negotiating a good deal for the SRC so that we can continue to provide high quality advocacy services, expand our legal service, and engage students in campaigns on campus. I will be working closely with other student organisations to ensure that we get the best outcome for students out of the SSAF, and that the future of independent, student run organisations at USyd is secure.
Apart from a big win on the SSAF, this year the SRC, NUS, and students around the country had a huge win with the announcement by the Government that they would - shock horror - actually put more money ($265 million more) into the student income support system, making youth allowance more accessible. The fight’s not over yet, as the rate of payment is still deeply inadequate, particularly for those living out of home in the Sydney metropolitan area, but given the Government’s commitment to returning the budget to a surplus any actual investment in anything to do with higher education was surprising and welcome. The thing I’m proudest of being involved with during my time as an SRC Office Bearer, however, is the setting up of the SRC Legal Service (SLS). This was a project that got off the ground half way
I could go on for pages about the other things we’ve had wins on this year (plagiarism policy, assessment policy, special consideration...) and submissions I’ve made (Base Funding Review, Student Income Support Reforms Review, International Student Visa Review...) but I’d like to take this opportunity to thank a few of the people who made it possible. First of all everyone who campaigned for and voted for me. I truly appreciate your faith in me to represent you and hope that I have served you well as President. Thanks to my family. I would not be who I am and where I am without your unconditional support. To Mum in particular - sorry for never coming home, regularly not replying to texts, and only occasionally calling you. Thanks for inspiring me with your passion for high quality, accessible education; unionism; and feminism; and for always believing in me. To my brother for the sibling support and the lolz. To Dad for teaching me how to start my car with a screwdriver (long story) and always being there. To John for the terrible jokes to lighten the mood. Thanks to the 2011 team - Tim and Al my education officers: it has been an absolute pleasure getting to know both of you, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with you. Al - while the “working with” part of the thanks mainly referred to Tim, you’ve still been great. I never thought I’d be such good friends with a Liberal, but I’ve really appreciated your friendship this year. Tim - thanks for the late night campaign planning, the Lady Gaga office/car times, and the many intellectual debates. Whenever I hear “Edge of Glory” I think of you. Ross, as Vice President we haven’t always agreed, but I appreciate your integrity and how hard you’ve worked for the SRC this year. Thank you. Rhys - for the work on the “underground” handbook and for the coffee sessions. To all the other office bearers and councillors I don’t have space to name here - thank you for your dedication and commitment to the SRC this year. To the SRC staff who have had to cope with what has certainly been an
Donherra Walmsley firstname.lastname@example.org twitter: @srcpresident
interesting council - thanks. Maggie - I have really loved working on all the SLS stuff with you this year. Thank you for your commitment to and passion for independent student organisations. Chitra - it’s been a learning curve for both of us, but it’s been fun being on the ride together. Claire - you’ve been caught in the crossfire a lot this year, thanks for always bringing a smile with you. Clare, Tina, Amanda, Hani, Laura, Keith, Sally, Breda, Mel, Sharon, Ruchita, Julie - you’ve all been amazing. James - it has been the year of submissions: thank you for all your hardwork and putting up with my incessant redrafting and questioning. To the Honi Eds - you’ve been a fantastic team. As you could tell from my laughter as I DSP’d, I’ve really enjoyed reading every edition this year. You’ve been incredibly friendly and supportive, and I’ve appreciated the chat times in the Honi offices. Best of luck in everything you do from here, I know you’ll all be successful in whatever that is. Thanks to all the activists I’ve worked with this year: Viv, Nai, David, Annabel, Tonya, Max, the other Max, Seb, Jay, Todd, Alex, Ben, Elise, Ariela, James, Richard, and Penny to name a few. You’ve all been amazing. A huge thanks to the NUS 2011 team - Rach, Jesse, Frank, Courtney, Billy, Pat and Monnox. You have done a great job this year. Rach in particular you inspire me every day with your unfailing commitment to progressive change and feminist activism even in the most adverse of circumstances. To my counterparts across the country, particularly my comrades Neha, Tim, Jade, Lyndal and Dani down at UTS thanks for the advice and the support/ shared suffering. Also to Rosa, Paddy, and National Labor Students for the interstate shenanigans. To all the past presidents: Noah, Kate, Angus, Felix, Rose, and especially Elly: thank you for being there to answer my ridiculous questions and supporting me. Elly, thank you for your own special brand of comforting crazy, and for getting me involved in this mess in the first place. To my counterparts at SUPRA and the USU - there are some interesting times ahead but after working with
you this year I feel that our student organisations are in safe hands. Best of luck. To everyone I’ve worked with in the University this year - Simon Barrie for the being such a strong supporter of students, John Shipp for always answering my emails, Derrick Armstrong and Michael Spence for always meeting with the SRC and listening to our concerns even if we didn’t agree, and supporting the SRC under VSU. To my friends - Rosie for keeping me sane with tea and dumplings, Dan for the uni lunches and coffees, Rawson Street, David Barrow, Michael V, Petra, Stefie, Lucy, Claire, Caitlin, Pat, Sean for the support, advice and the fun times. Amy Smith for continuing to fight the good fight and always being reassuring in a panic situation. To my wonderful girlfriend - I don’t think I could’ve gotten through the last few months without you. Thank you for being there with hugs and often food so I didn’t collapse when I was too busy to remember to eat. I’ve probably forgotten or run out of space to mention people here who also made this possible, so if you’ve been around at all, gotten involved, signed a petition, filled out a survey, gone to a collective meeting, voted in the elections, or even just read my column every week (or any week) – thank you. Thanks also to those who made the year difficult by pursuing an anti-union, anti-collective agenda, and those who made the year difficult by bullying and harassing staff and students within the organisation, and threatening to sue both the SRC and me – you know who you are. It’s been fun. Finally - thanks to Phoebe. It has been a pleasure working alongside you ever since I first got involved, and you’ve been my rock this year. No task has ever been too hard, no battle too tough to fight (and there have been no shortage of them this year!). Your passion for education and collective action are second to none, and I feel confident that I have left the SRC in some very capable, principled hands. Thank you so much for all of your support and your friendship this year. Good luck in 2012, and remember that I’ll only ever be a phone call away!
GENERAL SECRETARY’S report I can’t believe this is my last report as General Secretary. In true fashion I have submitted this report Sunday evening. To the Honi editors – my apologies – I just don’t know where the week goes each week.. A lot has happened over the past 12 months even in the past week alone! We have seen the introduction of a carbon tax – why politicians want to destroy our wealth and livelihood is anyone’s guess. We have also seen the destruction of VSU. Who thought it would take a Labor government until its second term before it rolled back VSU. Both of these taxes are bad for Australians – especially us university students. Both taxes will hurt the poorest individuals the most and that includes the thousands of students that are financially struggling. Currently you have the personal choice as to whether you want to pay $90$110 for an Access Card and $35 for SRC Membership (And $55 for Sports?). This is your choice. If you feel you can get value for money then you make the decision to hand your money over for an access card. But this new system is more complicated than the original pre-VSU period. Back then Sydney University students were forced to pay up to $600 in student union fees – if you didn’t then you couldn’t graduate. No other section of the community had compulsory union membership – but apparently it was okay to force on students.
EDUCATION OFFICER REPORT Holy fuck where did that year go? It doesn’t seem that long ago that we camped out (in a very literal sense) in the SRC dungeon, avoiding daylight for almost a week, to write the Counter Course survey. But, this is it. So, in a week where the SSAF passed, the NSW parliament discussed University governing bodies, the Senate elections were invalidated, and we’re all finally getting around to buying those readers for exam time – please allow us to be a little self-indulgent with this column, there are a lot of people to thank! To Donherra Walmsley – congratulations! We made it! You have been a committed and fierce advocate for students this year. You have been
an immensely supportive and helpful friend. You had been good for afternoon Lady GaGa sessions in the office. We appreciate all of these things in precisely that order (or reverse order? It’s hard to say). To Ross Leedham who probably has more integrity than any other person we know. Ross gets far too little credit for his work, and quite often does far too much of it. He has supported everything that we have done as Education Officers, and we could not have done half as much without him. He is an asset to the students at this University. To the councillors of the 83rd SRC (in particular Rhys, Al x2, Jules and Pierce) thank you for your support, your advice, your heated debate and your lols.
If you are a student that is only studying at night – when everything is closed – you still had to pay the $600 compulsory fees. Disagreed with your student politicians using the money to fly around the country or donating it to terrorist organisations and other organisations that murder defenceless human beings? Too bad – you still had to pay. People will argue that you could “resign” your union membership – but you still had to pay the $600! Now! This new regime is worse. The money goes directly to the university and my understanding is the university is under no obligation to pass the money on to the USU, SRC, SUPRA and the Sports Union. So does that mean that on top of the $263 we will be forced to pay that we still have to purchase an Access Card on top of that? Now have a thought for those doing it tough – not only are they currently working lots to pay for everything, which means they already have limited time to hang out at Manning but they’ll have to work longer to pay these compulsory fees for services they will have even less time for access to! But don’t worry they will tell you… If you can’t pay it up front, you can have it added to your HECS and you won’t mind or notice, because graduating students are already struggling with record level HECS Debt upon graduation… It has been a pleasure serving you as General Secretary over the past year and I am honoured for the privilege you have given me.
Tim Matthews & Al Cameron email@example.com
More people should come along to SRC meetings. They’re better with popcorn. (To the Honi Eds for putting up with our reports sometimes being late. This one was no exception. – Sorry guys!) To the Vice Chancellor, for being such a great sport while being the butt of most of our jokes. But seriously. Stop trying to take over the Union. It’s getting old. To our girlfriends Eleanor and Jacqui, thank you for putting up with our budding bromance. Most of all thanks to you – if you read this far into Honi every week, kept us occupied with email questions or complaints, filled out surveys or wrote angry letters. A lot of people complain that they don’t feel represented by the SRC, getting involved yourself is the only
way to change that.
Compulsory student unionism is an attack on the poor and vulnerable amongst us. It is important that we stand up, fight and defend the rights and freedom of everyone – including those that are doing it tough.
Chad Sidler firstname.lastname@example.org
Good luck to whoever fills our shoes. The pens are in the second drawer. P.S. You can make the next Education Officer(s’) job a whole lot easier, if you head to www.surveymonkey. com/s/CounterCourse11 and fill out this years’ Counter Course Survey. Happy procrastinating!
HoniLeaks Awards 2011
AWARD FOR BEST HONI SEGMENT THAT NEVER WAS: Slut me up, ______!
THE STAN LEE AWARD FOR BEST CAMEO Ban Ki Moon
THE ‘JUST GO TO TASTE’ AWARD FOR WORST FOOD OUTLET ON CAMPUS Miso Honi
THE ‘A NEW HOPE’ AWARD FOR BEST TURNAROUND The University of Sydney Union
At one point, all of our interviews would’ve been introduced with this phrase. Try “Slut me up, Keating!” Sadly, cooler heads prevailed.
Not sure why he came, or where he went, but we will always remember our first kiss. Summer lovin’, happened so fast ...
It should be a crime to both sell and buy the ‘food’ from this venue. Do yourself a favour: go home or go hungry.
THE ‘WHO THE HELL IS SHANE TREEVES?’ AWARD The guy we can only assume is Shane Treeves
LEAST IMPROVED BARBEQUE Manning Barbeque
For the first year since Voluntary Student Unionism, the USU has turned a profit. Bravo and kudos! If they can repeat this next year, the award will be upgraded to the USU STRIKES BACK.
THE COLONEL MUAMMAR ALGADDAFI AWARD FOR CONTINUED EXCELLENCE IN MANAGEMENT: Kim Walker, Dean of the Conservatorium By hook or by crook, she’ll be on her way shortly. Sources tell us she’s been out of the country lately, presumably searching foreign shores for her next bout of (un)gainful employment. THE MICHAEL BLUTH AWARD FOR FISHING TRIPS AND BROKEN PROMISES: Honi Consultation Hours After playing such an integral role in BOOM’s policies, our consultation hours fell by the wayside, along with faculty-specific sections. In our defence, the one time we set it up, the only person who turned up asked us what Honi Soit was. Contenders for 2012: a decent web page, regular reporter drinks and ‘the paper it deserves to be’. THE ‘COW FOR MAGIC BEANS’ AWARD FOR CRAZIEST SRC DEAL
Despite blatantly cribbing from Ayn Rand (or James Boag) for no discernible reason, Shane Treeves is our newest benevolent Board Directator. We still don’t know who he is, and so he must remain anonymous until proven Treevesy. THE FISHER LIBRARY AWARD FOR MOST OBVIOUS STACK Chad ‘the Chaddlesnake’ Sidler Shortly before its AGM, the Liberal Club’s membership swelled by several times the expected amount, and en masse voted to elect Mr Sidler to President. He was promptly expelled from his position. THE MA-TI AND ROCKY BALBOA AWARD FOR ‘THAT KID’S GOT HEART’ Tim Matthews Tim’s run with VOICE sadly was short a few votes for President, but what a campaign it was! He went the distance, now he’s back on his feet, just a man and his will to survive.
After the hiatus, many were keen to get back into the swing of things the BBQ’s reliably good food. Little did we know what a mistake it was to hope. MOST OBLIVIOUS COLLECTIVE The Anti-Racism Collective There are many criticisms you could level at the ARC: privileged. Entitled. Vituperative. But most of all, oblivious; anyone was a target, even the USU. Next O-Week, why not picket the actual people you’re protesting against? Food for thought. THE “ROOOBOT HOOUUSE!” AWARD FOR BEST UNINTENTIONAL PRANK VERGE Uncontainable + Glitter The glitter dumped into the shipping container was quite literally uncontainable, finding its way into physics labs and disrupting particle physics experiments. Art vs Science, eh?
The moral of this story is: when you want to win, it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you end up winning. All hail our democratically elected leaders! Hail! THE LIONEL HUTZ AWARD FOR MOST LITIGIOUS DIRECTOR OF STUDENT PUBLICATIONS Pat Massarani
THE ZELDA AND F. SCOTT AWARD FOR DOOMED RELATIONSHIP USU & the University
It’s over, guys. You’re the only ones who don’t realise it’s over. Won’t someone please think of the children!
THE “GOOD POINT, NOT INTERESTED” AWARD Undergraduate Fellow of the Senate, Ben Veness Asking the SRC for their opinion on a campus-wide smoking ban, he received a resounding “Hands off, Orwell!” which he chose to ignore. Looks like he wanted to listen to his medical degree more than his constituents. THE USU REBRAND AWARD FOR THE MOST PROFLIGATE WASTE OF MONEY The Conservatorium
THE GEORGE OSCAR BLUTH AWARD FOR WORST EXECUTIVE Chad Sidler
He’s threatened to sue the organisation he works for three times. WHY DO THEY EMPLOY HIM?
What was pitched as a new street art mural for Hermann’s, the dingiest bar that isn’t the Lansdowne, turned out to be a massive spray-painted Red Bull logo. What the fuck? For one, it’s ugly, a billboard inside a student space. For two, you’re associating yourselves with Hermann’s? Gross.
Once more, Nai Brooks’ campaign ad for the Union elections was fully misguided. Featuring a masked man killing hostages representing Clubs and Societies and complaining about budget cuts, it seemed guaranteed to flop. No one do anything like this again. Shooting = bad.
Over the past seven years, the Con has transformed from an ageing but moderately profitable institution into a money-sink several million in debt, its continued existence only assured by donations and harsh cost-cutting measures which punish the students. Most recently they spent a hundred grand on a shadowy PR firm, presumably to write about how great bassoons are.
Unity, NLS & the Libs vs. Closed Campus
THE SMOOTH TASTE OF LARAMIE CIGARETTES AWARD FOR MOST OBNOXIOUS PRODUCT PLACEMENT Hermann’s Bar
THE TOOHEYS TONGUE AWARD FOR MOST ILL-ADVISED AD Nai Brooks
THE DRUNK EX-BOYFRIEND AWARD FOR PASSIVE-AGGRESSIVE SPEECHES VC Michael Spence at USU dinner
The Micky Shpence Award for Cartoonish Villainy: VC Michael Spence
Referring to the Union’s new marketing slogans ‘Evolutionary, Entertainment, Yours’: “By ‘evolutionary’ did they mean they are neanderthals?” He then stroked his nonexistent beard/cat/penis.
After not printing one of his letters which was unsupported criticism/shit-stirring, Spence went about sending it to the entire student body. It left the same questions unanswered but this time to a larger audience.
DONALD RUMSFELD AWARD FOR SHOCKINGLY AWFUL PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKE Honi Soit It turns out there never was a police investigation into Union board President Sibella Matthews. She may still have WMDs though.
THE ‘MORE THINGS CHANGE’ AWARD FOR MOST CONTIGUOUS FUCKUP Honi Soit For the second year in a row we misprinted the names of the opinion comp winners. Our bad, Yitzi and Sam. Come see us for a free meat platter.
Chad Sidler received a $16,000 stipend this year. Chad Sidler fulfilled zero of the multifarious functions of the General Secretary this year, beyond a tokenistic and frequently insensitive report in this very paper. It’s put undue strain on an already burdened institution. THE QUEERSOC O-WEEK BLOWJOB AWARD FOR STORY WE DIDN’T NEED TO REPORT BUT COME HERE AND WE’LL TELL YOU ANYWAY Board Director James Flynn took a newly elected Zac Thompson out for dinner and drinks at the Lansdowne in a bid to secure his vote for the upcoming Executive election. At the end of an awkward night, Thompson shivered due to the cold, at which point Flynn took his coat and delicately draped it over Thompson shoulders. Thompson did not vote for Flynn.
NEWS WORLD GARTER OF THE
OCTOBER 19, 2011
LAST WEEK’S SALE: 9,349,221,053
EXCLUSIVE FREE PHONE WITH THIS PAPER!*
BEFORE... & AFTER!
SHOCKING: QUEEN IS ACTUALLY SIX CORGIS WEARING A COAT London, England – In a shocking turn of events yesterday, Queen Elizabeth II of the British Isles was revealed to be in fact several corgis piled on top of each other wearing an elaborate but lifelike human disguise, including a latex facemask, the royal regalia, and a large coat.
Thanks to the efforts of Garter investigative journalists, the Queen(s) has(ve) been detained by a task force of the Metropolitan police for questioning and regular walkies. Queen Elizabeth, 595, was unavailable for comment. Our reporters first became suspicious of the Queen’s (now contested) humanity after a telephone call was hacked from a cell phone located somewhere in Buckingham Palace. The call proceeded as follows: QUEEN ELIZABETH II: SERGEANT <REDACTED>, PLEASE SEND DOWN FIVE EXTRA LARGE BAGS OF ROYAL KIBBLE. QE2: BARK BARK BARK BARK! SERGEANT: UH … BARK BARK? QE2: [coughs] I SAID, THANK YOU SERGEANT.
SERGEANT: AS DID I, MARM.
Several other cellphones and landlines around the Queen were hacked by our reporters in the coming hours, though all information gleaned was determined
But upon hacking the Queen’s servants more details began to emerge. “It’s all true,” confided Julie Lannister, 39, maid to the Queen. “She’s actually just a bunch of dogs. At first I tried to tell everyone, but no-one believed me! This is such a relief. I thought I would go mad.”
Tomorrow, a landmark ruling will find News Corporation completely innocent of all charges of phone hacking and refute all claims of ethical violations by the News of The World of The Garter and its journalists, a judge is expected to say. “There have been no signs of any wrongdoing by News Corporation. In fact, in addition to a verdict of not guilty, I am awarding them All The Pulitzers,” Chief Justice Walter Campbell will say. “Three cheers for the News Corporation!” experts expect Campbell
“I am not a gaylien.”
She added, “Please don’t print my name, they will fucking kill me.” Confusion has arisen over whether or not the corgis remain royalty. “It’s certainly a matter for debate,” said Royal Historian and Master of the Doggery, Harold Bluntly, 62. “But the Royal Articles are quite clear on the subject: the Queen is the head of state. There’s nothing that says, should the Queen be a bunch of animals stacked willy-nilly atop each other hiding inside a pullover, we remove her from office.
Commoners were less keen on the idea. John Watkins, Tory supporter and father of two, said: “I didn’t vote for no doglady.” But what kind of gestalt-woman is the Queen, anyway? We hacked her close friends and family to find out. “This explains so much of her behaviour,” said Dame Pylon of Cornwall.
Pictured: Elizabeth II’s “Royal Wedding Reception Dog Mask”. “She was always pointing at my cats and saying, ‘Good eating on those cats, is there not?’” Stephen Guswalt, Queen’s Chamberlain, reminisced: “I made it a point to devote several hours a day in the itinerary to the Royal Ballroom, in which we left her alone after filling it with brightly coloured balls.” Phillip, 90, Prince: “One time when we heard a high-pitched whine, her dress collapsed into several dog-shaped outlines. I never really thought that much about it, to be honest.” Prince Phillip had previously admitted to having a ‘Queen fetish’ [NotWotG 12/10], but does this mean that in actual fact he has a six-dog-queen fetish? “This interview is over!” said Phillip. “And I’ve never really cared for the Turkish.” After hacking the back door of the London Police Station, we hacked our way through the desk sergeant and were promptly arrested for fraud. The Queen has offered to pay our bail in return for fewer articles about her true identity. Thanks, Queenie!
NEWS CORP. FOUND COMPLETELY INNOCENT JUDGE WILL PROBABLY SAY.
TOM CRUISE RETALIATES
to be neither scandalous nor easily sensationalised.
“God Bless the Queen!” he concluded.
SERGEANT: RIGHT AWAY MARM.
According to sources the High Court has likely been outfitted with confetti canons and banners in anticipation of Campbell’s decision. Sources say the banners may well confirm that Campbell’s “Mission” to free the News of The World of The Garter has been “Accomplished”. Campbell, who knows what’s good for him, was refreshingly honest in a recent interview with Garter staff. “I fully understand that I’ve had a good run in this position,” said Campbell, “Especially for someone who has all sorts of things hidden just below a squeaky-
clean surface. My secrets really are there for the picking to anyone brave enough to ask the right questions or tap the right phones.” “And my family, boy! If they receive adequate protection, I’m Tina Turner!” Campbell joked. In related news, Campbell still hasn’t heard from his son, who went missing last week. Here at thE office, we can onLy hoPe that the judge Makes the right choicE; as Far As we know, The world doesn’t need any more HERoes.
LASSIE IN NUDE SCANDAL
IS SYDNEY RACIST?
We ask our blackest friends.
JOHN TRAVOLTA DENIES SUICIDE
“I’m still here!”
REGULARS p 12-16 Fred Savage has sex with hooker on our desk for attention SHAME: Why is no-one touching our MPs anymore? Sex slave works part time as regular slave: “I’m working two jobs!” “SCIENCE IS REAL,” says crackpot. Cure yourself with magnets! May cause bukkake holocaust. OUTRAGE: Penis enthusiast actually gay Tribute concert fails to resurrect Princess Di. Celebrity on the run from police after attempting suicide Lindsay Lohan: “I will kill again!” Entourage actors shocked to find out real life dissimilar to Entourage Shirley Temple finally out of rehab Johnny Depp makes film with Tim Burton, also casts Helena Bonham Carter Mathematician claims Two And A Half Men “doesn’t add up”.
MARK TWAIN: RUMOURS OF MY DEATH HAVE BEEN GREATLY FAGGED UP Mississipi, USA — Mark Twain spoke from his riverboat to assembled press earlier today, including reporters from News of the World of the Garter, specifically to dispel the long-standing rumours of his death, which had been “greatly fagged up.”
“What a load of [poppy]cock,” said the literary genius, widely regarded as having written the most defining American novels of his century-old generation. He added: “Just absolute cock.” “I did not work tirelessly my entire life to capture and transpose the racial tension in the southern states of the Union into groundbreaking literature, with such delicate and powerful renditions of human beings both kind and unkind, thinking and unthinking, caring and uncaring, possessing as they all do the spark of life, the bearers of
CELEBRITY DOES THING
Gossip sites around the internet literally exploded today after the paparazzi managed to take candid snaps of a celebrity doing a thing outside their home. The now-infamous photo, taken at approximately nine o’clock this morning clearly depicts the celebrity- wearing what experts have agreed is “…a dressing gown, probably” — adjacent to their letterbox doing something. Reactions from the celebrity community have been typically mixed; Amanda Keller, from the universally respected WSFM Mornings, tweeted: “i think its gr8 that someone who people idolise can just come out
and do something. with u all the way xx”. Many celebrites, such as Peter O’Toole, have openly started doing things, in a display of celebrity solidarity.
Conversely, a coalition headed by Alan Jones and Kelsey Grammar have refused outright to do anything, citing the celebrity’s actions as “shameful” and “highly unprofessional”. Perhaps the most vocal commentator was James Earl Jones, who was heard to simply to shout “NOOOOOOOOO!”. Jonathan Taylor Thomas just wished for a normal life. The celebrity was unavailable for comment.
WALT DISNEY DEFROSTED! STILL TERMINALLY ILL Ontario, Canada — The cryogenic facility responsible for storing the slowly decaying body of Walt Disney unthawed him last night. “You found the cure?” said a soon-to-be disappointed Disney, who elected to be frozen in 1966 following a diagnosis of terminal lung cancer. Disney may be suddenly alive but he is unlikely to return to his profession, owing to the fact that he is still terminally ill. “WHY DID THEY UNTHAW ME WITHOUT CURING CANCER?!” Disney yelled, upturning expensive medical equipment. The equipment was later righted by facility employees with minor difficulty. Disney, whose company established a tradition of Western animation, was reportedly unenthused by a courtesy screening of his company’s latest film, Tron Legacy, choosing instead to “cry and gnash his teeth”. As to why he was revived, attending cryogenics expert Dr Cancer declined comment, saying “He’s in God’s hands now.”
wit, the champions of their own justice, to have these little tits in the press go and fag it all up by saying I’d suffered a gay heart attack for gays.”
province of mincing journalists piling around my house.” He then criticised our reporter’s grip on the pen, saying it spoke to a “deeply cissy nature.”
“It was in fact a stroke, which is like a heart attack but for real men.”
Following his re-appearance into the public eye, Twain, a noted social activist and vocal proponent of equal rights, seems to have become notably more vulgar. When questioned of his insistence upon using homophobic rhetoric, he said this:
Twain asserts that he is a widely-travelled man; his income in the early years of his literary career (circa 1863) was supplemented by writing travelogues and journals of his travels. “And in all that time, meeting as I did so many humans, alike not in colour but in freedom, irrespective of circumstance, for their chains were chains not in body but mind, and their minds were alive with the golden promise of the future, when the chains were gone, and all was well - in all that time I never found nothing so homo as this little bit of buffalo-buggering I find afflicting my character in this whorish new century.” “You remember A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court? I wrote that, you know.” Mr Twain refused to divulge the means by which he has cheated death, saying that it was “not within the
“It is self-evident that language has a power, a power to persuade and inform and change and in its own way can be alive itself, and it is itself unimpeachable beyond those that speak it and censure each other, and the violation of taboo is a power to be reckoned with, for it is an act of destruction, but also of creation, and to utilise it for anything less than the most important of goals is folly, and should be avoided. “This power I use makes me dominant and thus a ‘top’, cos if I were gay, and I’m totally not, I would wanna be a top. But, and I do not think I can make this any clearer, I am not gay.”
“NO-ONE CAN DEFEAT ORGAZMO!” ORGAZMO —
London’s latest Mayoral candidate is already self-assured of victory.
Making a splash at the Candidates’ Debate on Tuesday, Orgazmo issued the headlining quote in the midst of a heated, barely coherent speech: “My esteemed opponent thinks he can shut me down. No-one can defeat Orgazmo! Until the electricity no longer powers my billions of transistors, I will continue to smother this city with countless ... crushing ... orgasms!” Shouted a heckler in the crowd: “We love you, Orgazmo!” Following his recent performance in the polls, perhaps Orgazmo should be more humble. After the Tuesday gaffe, he dove eight points in the
polls, faring poorly in the critical ‘depraved twentysomethings’ demographic. Orgazmo’s opponent, CumSlug3000, was damning in his allotted two-minute response. “London deserves a Mayor who will not be swayed by blatant pandering. Nevertheless, we all know that Orgazmo’s synthetic form is chilling and inferior to my slimy, engorged bulk.
I will give this city the quivering orgasms of a true, passionate lover, the kind that stems from the passion of a true Mayor. “I will be mayor,” he continued as an ovation began, “and I will make you fountain everywhere!” Said a deflated, but refreshingly candid Orgazmo after the debates: “It’s true, it went to my head. I was a little out of it. But make no mistake, I will fuck this city raw.”
The Garter Press has hacked the phones of:
Michael Richardson, Pierce Wilcox, Laurence Rosier Staines, Shannon Connellan, Bridie Connell, James Colley, Julian Larnach, Ciaran Magee, Tom Walker, Adam Chalmers R.I.P.
“IF YOU PRINT ME ONE MORE TIME, I’LL BREAK UP WITH YOU” This bluff, issued by Leanne Richards yesterday, has today been called by NotWotG investigative reporter David Grant. Richards (27), a notorious slag, is believed to have issued the baiting lie during one of her infamous ‘huffs’. Time will tell.
ISRAEL CAUGHT IN SEX SCANDAL BY PAPARAZZO
Israel denied recent accusations that it had “fucked with the Arab States”, claiming that Palestine was ‘the only nation for ‘him’. Evidence of Abrams Main Battle Tanks crushing peasant villages in Iran was scorned by the militant nation-state, calling Iran a ‘cheap, violent fling’ and asserting that Palestine was ‘all worked up over nothing.’ Israel made a full press statement later that day, saying, “Me and Palestine, we have some issues to work over, but that’s all good now. I haven’t been fuckin’ much lately, but don’t worry, there’s much more to come.”
MICK JAGGER DIES IN SEXY CAR ACCIDENT Legendary Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger was the most attractive of the six victims of a three-car accident late Thursday night. The collision, taking place at 8 p.m. on the raunchy Sunset Strip(tease) of California, instantly turned the burning wreckage into the hottest place to be, with four nubile teens following
Jagger’s high-velocity lead and flinging themselves onto the busy road.
Jagger’s Jaguar was believed to have been travelling daringly over the speed limit when his car thrust non-consensually into the backside of an SUV, pushing the car into oncoming traffic, which has been the most popular form of traffic in Milan over the winter.
Jagger showed enthralled passers-by that his age, and naughtily snipped brake leads, would not slow him down, as he treated the crowd to some of his trademark dance moves. An animated Jagger threw his arms and legs into astonishing positions, occasionally forcing his bones clean through his skin. Strangely, despite the crowd’s overwhelmingly
positive reaction, Jagger has postponed all future performances, leading to rumours that he’s abandoning his musical roots to pursue more of this ‘street theatre’.
Keith Richards criticised Sir Mick for “showing off even in the event of his death,” maintaining that his 2006 fall from a coconut tree held “an eroticism that Mick’s solo albums lack.”
BABE IS SKANK
In a damning blow to her public persona and future career, former R&B babe Rihanna is being publicly denounced as a skank, starting right now. NotWotG can reveal exclusively that “Ri-Ri” is in fact a filthy whore, based on the words appearing directly before these words.
The star, who had her first major hit with “Umbrella”, may in fact need an umbrella now to protect herself from a downpour of wangs, NotWotG reports. As far as expert sources are aware, the amount of skankiness contained within Rihanna may indeed be reaching critical mass; in the near future she may reach
IMMIGRANTS: STEALING JOBS, BRINGING SMALLPOX Village elder Aging Bearclaw took to his wood-hewn stump today to denounce what he called the “swarm of immigrants washing against our shores like so much human filth. “This has gone on long enough,” Bearclaw said to an adoring crowd. “We gave these white folk the hand of friendship, and they repaid us with the blankets of disease. We asked for their magical fire-sticks, and they tied us to sticks and set us on fire.” Bearclaw “Now, I’m not a racist. Some of my closest friends are white. But this is our country, not theirs! These honkies are coming into our towns, stealing our jobs, playing their offensive modern ‘harpsichord’ music and building their dwellings on our sacred burial grounds.” Among those concerned at the growing anti-white
LEECHY ‘NOT A CELEBRITY’ The News of the World of the Garter would like to offer a formal retraction and apology for our unremitting. unethical and unscrupulous publication of many of the sordid details of the sexual life of Leechy, ~34.
It has recently come to our attention that Leechy is not a celebrity of any kind. Therefore the tales of deviance and sexual perversion that we thought would be interesting to you were, in fact, trivial. We would like to retract the following articles: • Leechy denies leech sex farm • Leechy to become
• Leeches are our sexfuture • The Slow Onset of Moral Decay: Leechy In Focus • New one-man show: SexLeech the Musical • Adam Sandler wins cycling tournament These articles, while 100% accurate, were not what you have come to expect from us. We are sorry. Similarly, the news that Leechy was not nominated for a Logie was, in fact, not news. The opposite occurrence would have been newsworthy, given
levels of cockhunger that, at this stage, are purely theoretical, matching up exactly to Einstein’s Expansion Coefficient. Rihanna could not be reached for comment as this reporter had misplaced his ten foot pole and would be damned if he’d touch her with anything else.
“SEVERE BURNS VICTIM” ACTUALLY
WELFARE FRAUDSTER The fact that she suffered horrific, lifealtering injuries while saving a child from a burning building does not at all alter the fact that single mother Martha Norris, 26, has been illicitly living off the teat of the State for many years.
“I don’t understand how these two things are linked,” said Norris from her hospital bed. “We have to accept that this nation’s welfare system is broken, that everyone takes advantage of it – in fact, many of the case workers
LETTERS FROM T. POPE
Savage, a former child star
Norris, whose fast temper indicates that underneath all that scar tissue she’s probably a darkie, made it clear in a phone interview that she would no longer comment on the issue to NotWotG. you da man, G
word from T. Pope & the C-Licks
word from T. Pope & the C-Licks
give it up, yo
word from T. Pope & the C-Licks
dont be a hater. give yoselfs to Christ (no homo) word from T. Pope & the C-Licks
Aging Bearclaw was engaged in a dark ritual of souls and declined to comment.
Hollywood, CA — Wonder Years star Fred Savage has been arrested for mugging the fat kid from Two And A Half Men, who may be called Billy someone. We don’t know.
“I need that money to take care of my daughter, buy basic groceries and just get by day-to-day,” lied Needy Norrie, as she is doubtless known to the Taxation, Welfare, and Immigration Offices.
we cool. respec
‘This is a difficult time for our people, but I know there is a way out. I have had a vision of a glittering future, my friends! We will have mighty reserves of gold, deposited from mechanical mouths into our grasping hands. I have seen poor fools playing our games of chance for hours fuelled by desperate, foolish hope, and most impressive, palm trees sprouting inside!”
FRED SAVAGE MUGS FAT KID FROM TWO AND A HALF MEN
At the rally, Aging Bearclaw’s grand vizier, Six Dogs In Coat, stroked his anachronistic goatee with the delicate fingers of a pianist and/or strangler. ‘The game is up, my friends, and the name of the game is Miscegenation. I’m talkin’ bout breeding, and how we need to stop them doing it, before they overwhelm us like a human tide.
In other news, celebrities = vampires? Our science-men give you the what-for!
Norris’ injuries, which covered 90% of her body and required multiple skin grafts, did not stop her from claiming thousands of pounds in welfare from the country she was supposedly born in, a task that even the most able-bodied of men find difficult. Therefore, News of the World of the Garter is inclined to disbelieve her claims to “disability”, much less “mental anguish”, given
her disgraceful tendency towards melodrama.
sentiment is White Studies professor Smiling Hawk Eats Melon. ‘On a brutally Realpolitik level, white folk are willing to take the service-level jobs that our people simply won’t do. They’re our buffalo minders, our dreamcatcher-weavers, our human sacrifices.’
Leechy’s lack of formal training and access to/ belief in television. The release of Leechy’s sextape continues to baffle him.
encourage such actions – and vilifying one sadly disfigured woman is not going to fix anything.”
himself, allegedly attacked the current child star with a sack full of oranges, before stealing his wallet and iPhone, while narrating “He didn’t say it and neither did I, but I wanted his loot.” Parents of the fat kid are reportedly distraught: “We paid for that iPhone with our own money,” they told Entertainment NowNowNow! “Sure, we embezzled that money from our fat kid, but them’s the breaks in this town!” The parents then told us that if we liked THAT fat kid (the ‘half’ in Two And A Half Men), they could hastily prepare another for us. Savage’s motive is unknown, so we assume it was sexual.
JUDE LAW: SEXY AS EVER LONDON, YE OLDE ENGLAND — Reporters flocked to the fashionable Soho residence of Jude Law earlier this week to witness the film star offer thoughts on a variety of sociopolitical issues, and offer his body to the devouring eyes of the slavering masses. “I’ve called you hear today to pledge my unwavering support of the various Occupy ‘Insert Place Here’ protests,” said the frequently topless Law. As he went on to describe his motivations, including a detailed economic analysis of the inequality faced by working classes across the Anglophone world, our reporters couldn’t help ceasing to listen in favour remembering Law’s fetching downstairs bulge in the remake of Alfie. “Cor, guvnor, but I’d like to occupy his belowdecks and demand my 99%,” said
NEW SEXIEST MAN ALIVE! With the death of 2011’s Sexiest Man Alive Ryan Reynolds the mantle has fallen to SecondSexiest Man Alive Hugh Jackman. Jackman is reported to have stood over
a temporally confused passerby. Sing it, sister! NotWotG reporters have hacked the passerby’s phone and discovered a plethora of messages describing Jude Law’s face and body in disturbingly intimate detail. It’s true, formerly anonymous woman – we all would like to get a bit ‘Closer’ to him! Outside his house, Law began to describe the Keynesian logic that is required to extricate our world from an economic mess of our own making, while a growing crowd began to stare droolingly at Law’s chiselled manhood. Law spoke at length—yoohoo!—about the means of production while a woman screamed, “I would like to touch you.” It’s what we were all thinking, but kudos to those who dare to say it. There’s only one Law in this town, and it’s this: if you’re a straight man, just close your eyes and pretend it’s Judy Law, his equally sextastic sister. Ooh la la! Reynolds’ body, smeared his high cheekbones with Reynolds’ blood and screamed “there can be only one!” Third-Sexiest Man Alive Joseph GordonLevitt’s ice fortress could not be reached for comment; our messenger hawks did not return alive.