Raiders of Lost Property Pg 14
Too Jaded to be Faded
Denim Overalls are my One Weakness Pg 16
Scenes of Debauchery at Laneway 2018 Pg 20
EDITOR'S LETTER 3 NEWS News 4 Politics 8 *News* 9 Scalding Hot Takes 10 LETTERS & NOTICES 11 OPINION 13 FEATURES Raiders of Lost Property 14 Denim Overalls are my One Weakness 16 The Pity and Pleasure of Being a Shit Asain 18 Scenes of Debauchery at Laneway 2018 20 Getting to Know Grant Guilford 22 CENTREFOLD Castle Point 24 COLUMNS Presidential Address 26 VUWSA 26 Philosoraptor 27 Te Ara Tauira 28 CanDo 28 Shit Chat 29 Mauri Ora 30 Postgrad Informer 30 From the Archives 31 REVIEWS Television 33 Music 34 Books 36 Podcast 37 Film 38 Food 39 Art 41 Poem 42 ENTERTAINMENT Disctractions 44 Comin 46
Editor's Letter LOUISE LIN
CW: sexual assault I went to the Women in Suffrage 125 years anniversary celebration launch today. Dame Patsy Reddy spoke about how far we have come. “New Zealand laid the foundation for the gender equality we experience today… New Zealand has become one of the most gender equal countries in the world.” Did you know that? I sure fucking didn’t. The 125 celebration was just that. A celebration. NZ gave women the vote 125 years ago. Well done us. The suffragists fought hard and copped a lot of flak, and now we’re eating canapés. Raw oysters slurped up, shell put back on the tray for the immaculate waitress in a gray waistcoat to whisk away, mysterious green gloop in shot glasses, triangle sandwiches, juice out of wine glasses, smiling, greeting and cheek-kissing, this is a formal event you know, no jeans allowed, talking about how great New Zealand is. We done good. I know that I should be grateful that we’ve already come so far. Wallowing in restless anger makes Louise an unhappy girl. And maybe I’m taking for granted the fact that yes, women do have the vote, yes, we do have a female PM, yes, maybe New Zealand is one of the most gender equal countries in the world. Pay gap only 12%. (and only 20% of that is accounted for by the facts that men and women work different occupations, women tend to work part time, and differences in education. Just in case you want to know.) But. #metoo. Russell McVeagh. It’s become slightly less taboo to talk about sexual violence, and now everyone’s talking about it. I’m real proud of everyone for speaking out. But it breaks my heart. I’m full of grief about the pain, fear, and trauma that women experience daily. I’m also hopeful. I firmly believe that social change is possible, that in fact, social change is constant. I’m also confident that we’re close to a solution. Change
how we enact masculinity. Destigmatize femininity. Change how we think about sex and relationships. And continue to speak out about assault and harassment, pushing the message that it’s never ok. Most of all, we need to learn to sit with discomfort. Sit with the understanding that we could have been wrong. For every #metoo, there is an #ihave, and guilt is a lot more of a tickly feeling than righteous anger. But there is so much value, world-changing value, in admitting the we have fucked-up beliefs and behaviours, not hating on yourself or others for it, understanding that it’s from a wider cultural system we exist within, and being committed to change. My boss at the soup kitchen called the recent tide of sexual assault allegations “pc gone mad”. “Soon we won’t even be able to look at a girl without getting sent to jail,” he said. I understand his fears. It’s his demographic that’s getting attacked. But I think he doesn’t understand the reality that most women live with every day. Flinching at catcalls walking home at night (or don’t flinch, laugh it off, you’re no pussy). Ass slaps in night clubs - inevitable (treat it as a joke, that’s how to deal with it, why are you whinging). The impossible “choice” of saying no when your mouth freezes body freezes is this ok I don’t know and it’s happening so fast it’ll be over soon if you grin and bear it… ha. Ha. A Newshub reporter (I think his name was Simon or something) said “you’re from Salient? Aw cute”. Sarcastic smile. Hand over heart. And I said “haha yeah” or something because I was already uncertain and scared from the unfamiliarity and the red rope that the media had to stand behind and the fancy cameras and the important people and didn’t occur to me to tell him to fuck off for being so condescending. We are at an event celebrating 125 years of giving women the vote. Don’t you get it yet?
NEWS UNION RAIL STRIKES RESOLVED After four Rail and Maritime Union strikes in the last four months, the strikes were resolved on 5 March 2018 through negotiation with French rail company Transdev. The new collective contract has been ratified by both parties. The fourth strike commenced on 27 February 2018. It was originally planned as a three-week strike to protest train drivers working overtime in Auckland. Services ran at twenty minute intervals rather than the usual ten minute intervals during peak hours. In order to cope with the strikes, additional carriages were added to the Eastern, Western and Southern lines where it was possible, as well as extra bus services being added to bolster the less frequent train services across Auckland. The Rail and Maritime Union has been in debate with Transdev over their plans to do away with train managers, in favour of driver-only trains. After a week of deliberation, a joint statement was released to say that Transdev and the Rail Union plan to work together “constructively and cooperatively” to resolve these issues. National’s spokesperson for transport Judith Collins says that the Labour Government has “emboldened” unions to protest the system. Labour writes in their transportation policy that they aim to create a “modern transport system, to make our country even better after nine years of underinvestment…under National”. No specific measures for achieving this are outlined in the policy. Labour Transport Minister Phil Twyford has floated the idea of cheaper public transport fares to reduce traffic and congestion in both Auckland and Wellington. Neither Twyford nor the media representative for Auckland Transport could be reached for comment, however Twyford’s proposition has received support from both Wellington Mayor Justin Lester and Auckland City Councillor Chris Darby. - Vita Molyneux
SOUTH AFRICA MOVES TO CONFISCATE WHITE OWNED LAND South Africa’s newest Premier Cyril Ramaphosa, who in February took over from the deposed Jacob Zuma, has begun his term amid controversy. A motion was tabled on Tuesday
27 February to amend South Africa’s constitution to allow the expropriation, without compensation, of white owned farms. The motion passed by a landslide of 241 to 83. First voiced under the Zuma administration, the policy of land redistribution has been in the pipeline since March 2017. The man responsible for tabling the proposal, Julius Malema of the Economic Freedom Fighters (a revolutionary Marxist outfit), went on record to Parliament just after the vote, saying, “The time for reconciliation is over. Now is the time for justice. We must ensure that we restore the dignity of our people without compensating the criminals who stole our land". This sentiment is mirrored by Andile Mngxitama of “Black First Land First,” in an interview with Russia Today where she stated, “whites do not own land in Africa legally… this land has been taken from us”. In South Africa currently, 90% of black Africans do not own land, with 72% of land being owned by whites. The only thing analysts seem certain of at present is that the Government’s stance is unlikely to help an already dire economic situation. In Zimbabwe in the 2000s, a similar land redistribution scheme caused complete economic collapse. This move has triggered widespread outrage and debate on social media, with some calling it racist and spiteful, and others defending the move as simply righting historical injustices. Transvaal Agricultural Union of South Africa President Louis Meintjes warned this move would be fiercely resisted in the courts. A petition in the United States is gaining thousands of signatures, urging President Trump to allow all dispossessed white farmers to emigrate to the US. - Calum Steele
VICTORIA UNIVERSITY LECTURER ACCUSED OF SPREADING MISINFORMATION Adeline Grieg, a Board Member of Gender Minorities Aotearoa, has written to Victoria University in objection to a university faculty member “publically spreading a false history of the holocaust on Twitter”. In an “open letter for wide publication” released on 28 February 2018, Grieg alleges that Dr Pala Molisa, a lecturer for the Victoria University School of Accounting and Commercial Law, is spreading “crackpot ‘historical negationism’ [centring] around the idea that Nazis helped invent
transsexuals and transgender people”. Dr Molisa’s twitter account shows very few original tweets, but rather a large number of retweets, particularly those from Renee Gerlich (twitter user @renee_jg). The retweet Grieg appears to be referring to in her letter is that which contains an article written nine months ago by Gerlich, comparing modern trans surgery to Nazi experimentation on trans people, entitled “Fundamentalism, Pseudoscience, Romanticism, and Scapegoats: some parallels of gender identity doctrine with Nazi eugenics”. In a public comment from Grieg on Facebook: “[the article] refers to a single source where a psychiatrist speculates that there may be a link between one reported case of genital mutilation torture by Nazis and [Gender Reassignment Surgery] today”. In a comment on the same Facebook thread, Grieg said that Molina and Gerlich have threatened her with defamation litigation. Grieg could not be reached for comment. When contacted by Salient, a spokesperson for Victoria University said that “the University is following due process in regard to examining the concerns raised in the letter and will not be commenting further at this time”. Dr Molisa has declined an interview with Salient on the matter. - Sasha Beattie
POSSIBLE GENDER AFFIRMATION SURGEON SURFACES A possible new candidate to perform gender affirmation surgery in New Zealand has surfaced, coming as welcome news to the 102 trans people currently on the national waiting list. Dr Rita Yang can perform both maleto-female and female-to-male gender affirmation surgery (GAS), also known as gender or sex reassignment surgery. Dr John Kenealy, President of the New Zealand Plastic Surgeons Association, indicated that it might be some time before Dr Yang would be able to practice the surgeries due to the “complex” issues around organising a surgery team. Additionally, full capacity at District Health Boards (DHBs) around the country means finding a replacement for not only Dr Yang at her region, Auckland, but also the rest of the team from other stretched DHBs, may delay New Zealand’s first GAS surgeon in four years. Progress on the list has been slow recently, especially with the resignation of
NEWS the country’s only GAS surgeon, Dr Peter Walker, in 2014. Currently, the government only funds three GAS surgeries every two years from the special high cost treatment pool. Since 2015, only two surgeries had been funded, with 39 people being added to the waitlist during the same time period. GAS through the private sector can cost up to $20,000, and often requires trans people to leave the country, making the procedure highly inaccessible for many. UniQ Victoria Co-President, Erin Page, said the news “is a great step forward for the trans community in New Zealand; for those who need these live-saving surgeries”. “Many people see GAS as an elective surgery and therefore don’t believe it should be publicly funded. But GAS allows trans people to live their lives openly and happily in a body they feel is theirs.” “As the number of people coming out as trans grow, and the inevitable demand for trans-specific healthcare grows, it is vital that there is a surgeon in the country who can offer GAS.” Page also pointed out that although not all trans, non-binary, and gender nonconforming people need or want GAS, the service is “imperative” for those that do. -Johnny O’Hagan Brebner, Acting UniQ Communications Officer
LAST SURVIVING OFFICER OF THE MAORI BATTALION DIES First Lieutenant Alfred 'Bunty' Preece, the last surviving officer of the D Company, commonly known as the "Māori Battalion," died last Friday 2 March. He was 96 years old. Lieutenant Preece served as an officer in Māori Battalion, of the 28th (Māori) New Zealand Infantry Battalion during The Second World War. The Battalion was formed in 1939 when prominent Māori members of Parliament and the wider Māori community proposed that a combat unit consisting mainly of Māori be established. The Māori community hoped that this unit would prove Māori loyalty to the British Empire, and “test their warrior skills,” according to historian J F Cody. The 28th Battalion went on to serve in Greece, North Africa and Italy throughout the war, and received more individual decorations for bravery than any other New Zealand unit. Sir Bernard Freyburg, VC, Commanding Officer of the Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force and future Governor General of New Zealand, was recorded as saying by Lieutenant Preece himself that "No infantry had a more distinguished record, or saw more fighting, or, alas,
had such heavy casualties, as the Māori Battalion". The legacy of the Māori Battalion played an important part in what has come to be known as the “Māori Renaissance,” with former Battalion members often being at the forefront of Māori issues and politics throughout the latter half of the 20th century. Their descendants serve in prominent roles today, for example, the Honourable Peeni Henare, Labour Party Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Whānau Ora, and Youthbeing. Peeni’s great grandfather was Sir James Henare, a Lieutenant Colonel in the Māori Battalion. Lieutenant Preece served for three years in the New Zealand Army, and was wounded at the Battle of Monte Cassino in Italy. He went on to become Mayor of the Chatham Islands, and was an advocate for wider Māori issues throughout his life. Alfred was laid to rest on 5 March 2018 at his home on the islands. Ake! Ake! Kia Kaha E! (Upwards, upwards, be strong!) – motto of the 28th (Māori) Battalion, New Zealand Army. - Chris Nixon
TRUMP'S AMERICA The Department of Justice appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to lead the inquiry into Russian interference in the 2016 election, including any matters that “may arise directly from the investigation”. Operating under this broad spectrum, Mueller has uncovered criminality that includes money laundering, cyber attacks, hacks, and multiple cases of obstruction of justice over the last nine months. His most recent indictments of thirteen Russians and the three organizations that have facilitated them - with no expectation of extradition to lead to their arrest - is an unprecedented move in American history. At the heart of the charges is the Internet Research Agency (IRA), which creates and circulates propaganda in order to create the illusion of mass support for a cause. Interviewed by the Washington Post, ex-employees have described it as an ‘Orwellian’ institution, with over 1000 Russian workers turning the ‘telling [of ] untruths into an industrial assembly line’. The agency originally formed in 2013 to rally behind the separatist insurgency in Ukraine and against Russian sanctions, before turning its focus to the West in 2015. Mueller revealed that “they engaged in operations primarily intended to communicate derogatory information about Hillary Clinton, to denigrate other candidates such as Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, and to support Bernie Sanders and then-candidate Donald Trump,” in order to "promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy". Twitter has officially announced that
as of January 2018, 50,000 Russian accounts posing as US citizens have been identified, of which, 3,800 were thought to be linked to the IRA. It is estimated that 1.4 million people directly interacted with these accounts throughout the election. In February 2018, Facebook admitted to an investigative Senate Committee that they had underestimated the manipulation of their platform, which led to IRA propaganda inadvertently being recommended by Facebook algorithms to as many as 126 million Americans. Last week, Reddit announced they removed a “few hundred” accounts, and that a “few thousand” Americans appeared to have unwittingly promoted Russian propaganda. Reddit are otherwise keeping details of the interference silent, stating they want “to be careful to not tip [their] hand too much while [they] are investigating. Mueller has obtained search records to further investigate any complicity in this activity. Having won the Presidency by a margin of 80,000 votes across three crucial states, President Trump has dismissed accusations that his win may not have been legitimate. He has claimed undocumented immigrants casting votes for Clinton explained her 2.8 million popular vote lead. Only in the past month has he abandoned his adamant stance that Russia had not interfered in the 2016 election, instead tweeting that “The results of the election were not impacted” by their presence. Trump has also refused to enforce a bill of sanctions against Russia, and has made no comment on potential threats of sabotage to the upcoming US midterm elections this year. - Tori Bright
NEW ZEALAND'S UNCERTAIN ROLE IN IRAQ Harmeet Sooden, a New Zealand human rights campaigner who was abducted in Iraq in 2005, has released a report in collaboration with Stuff about the continued involvement of the New Zealand Defence Force in the training of Iraqi security forces. In February 2015, the National government approved the deployment of 143 Defence Force personnel to Iraq. This contingent was to act in a purely instructional capacity, and aid in the training of Iraqi defence personnel. With the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militarily defeated in December 2017, questions are being raised about the purpose of the Australia-New Zealand contingent to Camp Taji in Iraq. According to Mr Sooden, New Zealand soldiers are not only training the security forces but have expanded their role to incorporate the collection of various forms of intelligence. This includes biometric information, which can allegedly be
NEWS accessed by foreign parties such as the United States Department of Defense. During the 2017 election, the Labour Party campaigned on a platform of immediate withdrawal of New Zealand personnel from Iraq. After four months of a Labour-led coalition, we are yet to see action being taken toward delivering on this promise. The last review of the deployment was in June 2016, which allowed for New Zealand personnel to continue training at a secure location 52 kilometres south of Camp Taji. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade told Salient that the mission will be continued until November 2018, but provided no denial or confirmation as to whether there has been a change in the mission’s objective. "Training has now been provided to over 30,000 Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), and contributed to the ability of Iraqi troops to expel ISIS/Daesh from Iraqi territory in December 2017." - Thomas Campbell
JUDGE BECROFT CALLS TO LOWER THE VOTING AGE His Honour Judge Andrew Becroft, the New Zealand Children’s Commissioner, has asked MPs to consider lowering the voting age to 16. Judge Becroft appeared before the Social Services Select Committee at Parliament in February, and urged them to lead a nationwide discussion on the issue. He told the committee that it may provide headway to involving more young people in the electoral and democratic process. Judge Becroft heads the Office of the Children’s Commission, a non-profit group which advocates for children’s rights. "All that I have seen about our democratic system shows that those that are least involved and invested in it are our young. The lowest voting turnout is the 1829 age group, we've got to do better.” Judge Becroft suggested this would need to be in conjunction with increased civic education for people below the age of 18. “We need a commitment to teach about the operation of Government, how kids can be involved, what voting means, everything I've seen indicates that 16 and 17-year-olds will be up for that responsibility." At the base of Judge Becroft’s concerns is a belief that young people do not have enough influence in the political system, and thus do not feel as if they are able to enact their agency. “Children under 18 make up 23% of New Zealand's population, but have no other way of influencing policy. If they voted and had a lobby, I'm quite convinced that our policy for under 18-year-olds would significantly improve.” He highlighted the fact that while we
lead the world in support for the elderly, we are one of the worst ranked for developed countries in our child poverty rates. Not all politicians in New Zealand are supportive of lowering the voting age. ACT leader David Seymour said he did not believe we should be increasing the number of non-taxpayers voting. "We've got far too many voters in New Zealanders who don't pay any tax without adding 16 and 17 year olds to the mix." National Party leader Simon Bridges told the New Zealand Herald that although he was open to the idea, he did not see lowering the age as a critical issue. "I don't think that's necessarily something that needs to happen. I think you'd have to see an evidence base for why that was a good idea.” Several countries around the world have sixteen as the minimum voting age, namely Germany, Austria, Brazil, and Scotland. When Austria lowered the voting age, it was found that voters below eighteen turned out to vote at higher rates than firsttime voters of ages 18 to 20. - Harry Clatworthy
EYE ON EXEC There wasn’t a cat on the projector screen today. Jacob and Jacob from the Engineering Club came in to talk. They wore matching hoodies. They want to become faculty representatives, instead of just a club. This idea was met with general approval. Marlon said that O-week was “the best O-week I ever went to. People going hard but still looking out for themselves”. He moved to thank Beth, VUWSA’s Events Manager, and Tam, our Engagement VicePresident, for the hard work they’ve done, and also thanked the volunteers Morgan and Elliot. Marlon met with Justin Lester, our Mayor. Marlon said Justin was “real cool, he’s so cool, he’s a cool man”. They talked about sexual violence, Don’t Guess the Yes, and Thursdays in Black. Marlon talked about VUWSA’s stall in Newtown Festival. They handed out Raro there. Connor, our Clubs and Activities Officer, corrected him — it was Vitafresh, actually. Joseph, our Association Secretary, asked about calling the drink “VUWSAade”. “Wasn’t it VUWSA-fresh?” said Tam. “Reckon we’ll hold on that,” said Marlon. There were chuckles. Matt, VUWSA’s CEO, talked about the challenging parts of O-Week. There was one noise complaint made to the Uni about the Hunter Lounge. But, overall, he said students were well behaved. “So different from last year, you’d think it was a whole different lot.” Hannah, VUWSA’s Communications Advisor, made a guest appearance to talk about the changing face of comms. Facebook has changed their algorithms to
deprioritize businesses and prioritize what friends and family “like”, so the 25,000 post reach that VUWSA is accustomed to has dropped to 5000. She suggested a budget shift to look at “sponsoring” Facebook posts. Matt mentioned that Facebook wants more money, and doesn’t like to give out free advertising. Hannah noted that Instagram is on the rise. That’s where the young people are at these days. Matt said that the eating competition he is hosting is no longer serving eyeballs because the eyeballs were too big. This announcement was met with expressions of relief. He planned to give the eyeballs to Salient instead. “Why are we having an eating competition?” asked someone. “Because Matt wants to,” another person replied. Jack, the Treasurer, noted that the van is not in a great state, and while it is still drivable, its value will depreciate quickly. They are buying a people-mover because it’s cheaper, easier to drive, and will fulfil the same functions as the van. The peoplemover will also have the VUWSA logo. Jack commented that the current van “doesn’t look great for us as a vehicle”. Marlon agreed, saying it “makes people question our legitimacy”. Connor said “when we offer people lifts… they think we’re unsavoury sorts”. VUWSA voted to buy an eight seat people-mover to replace our van, thus ending VUWSA’s long and fascinating history of van ownership. Beth, our Events Manager, talked about an upcoming rally VUWSA is planning, in conjunction with Victoria University Feminist Organization and Victoria University Law Society. Dress code black. You won’t be allowed to attend if you’re not wearing black. But you will. Marlon mentioned that the Memorandum of Understanding between VUWSA and Ngāi Tauira needs updating, since some clauses were outdated. For example, VUWSA’s financial commitments to Ngāi Tauira are impossible post Voluntary Student Membership (VSM). VSM is when, in 2012, all student association memberships in NZ became voluntary, and student associations have been broke ever since. Simran passed a motion to wish Connor a happy 22nd birthday. Marlon passed a motion to wish me a happy birthday retroactively. The Chat in the Hat began when Ella surreptitiously took off her ladybug beanie, with a 3D ladybug face and pompom tassels, and began passing it around during General Business for people to put in chat topics. Marlon performed the ceremonial chat-drawing without much ceremony. The topic for discussion was “Black Forest chocolate at exec meetings”. Connor said he was “allergic to Black Forest”. Jack was “on board”. Ella was “keen”. Tam asked about the “Biscuit and Berry” flavour. There was some discussion about the potential merits of dark chocolate. Simran suggested the
NEWS 52% dark, “the least dark while still being dark”. Someone raised the possibility of having different flavours of chocolate. When asked, Geo, our Campaigns Officer, said he was on the fence about chocolate. General consternation ensued. There was no vote passed. - Louise Lin
EYES TURN TO LEBANON As the war in Syria continues, eyes are turning to Lebanon, a more traditional hot spot for violence in the region. In 2006 Israel launched a devastating war against Hizbollah, a Shi'a Islamist political party and militant group in Lebanon, in an effort to secure their northern border from further raids by the group. This was but the most recent invasion of Lebanon by Israel, and the raison d'être for the group who were founded during Israel’s occupation from 1982-2000 to expel the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). One of the primary potential flashpoints between the two sides is the escalating dispute over ownership of the Leviathan gas field, claimed by both Israel and Lebanon. An intensifying war of words has broken out over the matter between Israel and Hassan Nasrallah, the current leader of Hizbollah. Nasrallah has noted that if Hizbollah so wished they could shut down Israeli exploration in the gas field, presumably via a military strike on a gas platform. In February, Israel announced plans to build a border fence along the United Nations demarcated “Blue Line,” which Israel withdrew to in 2000, where Nasrallah stated, “Lebanon will be united behind the state and the army to prevent the Israeli enemy [violating Lebanese territory]… Hizbollah will fully handle its responsibility in this regard”. While trading threats between the two parties is common, this blase attitude ignores the fast-changing facts on the ground, with both Israeli and Hizbollah’s officials talking up a future war. Indeed, Hizbollah Media Officer Mr Ahmed in Beirut has noted that it is not a case of if but of when the next war will erupt. In the time since the 2006 war, Hizbollah have increased not only the size but also the quality of their arsenal. Most analysts are in agreement that the group now possesses well over 100,000 advanced rockets and missiles, all pointed squarely at Israel. One such analyst for the IDF, Yiftach Shapir, commented to the Jerusalem Post that the Israeli government is going to have some tough decisions on what it can realistically defend, as the system is susceptible to being overwhelmed, especially with targets like Dimona and Haifa - which respectively house chemical and nuclear plants - likely to come under
sustained fire. The threat of sustained missile strikes on greater Israel has been brought into stark relief over the course of the Syrian conflict, with the IDF launching numerous raids at Syrian/Iranian convoys carrying equipment to Lebanon. The raids came to a head when an Israeli jet was shot down in February by Syria after attacking the launch site for an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) drone, the IRGC being Hizbollahs chief ally and backer. Brigadier General Manelis, a senior spokesman for the IDF, also alluded to the growing threat from Iran in Lebanon when he called the country “one giant Iranian missile factory,” in an op-ed posted to the Lebanese opposition. With Iran and her proxy being Israel’s chief nemesis, it is highly unlikely Tel-Aviv will further tolerate the growing presence of Iran there. If one thing is certain, the next war will be ruinous for both sides. - Calum Steele
WELLINGTON HOSTS NZIIA CONFERENCE The New Zealand Institute of International Affairs (NZIIA) brought together New Zealanders “from all walks of life” to discuss how New Zealand can navigate global disruption. The conference was held on 27 February 2018 in Wellington. The theme of the conference was “The Law of the Jungle: How can New Zealand Navigate Global Disruption”. Speakers from many fields discussed various interpretations of this phrase. There were five sessions, and a keynote conversation with Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Tim Wright. The conference covered New Zealand’s relationships with other countries, with particular regards to the issues of nuclear disarmament, free trade and climate change. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern touched upon these issues in her keynote address, and was eager to stress the relevance of international relations to all New Zealanders. “We ignore the domestic impacts of international relations at our peril.” The Prime Minister further spoke at length about her interest in keeping the primacy of New Zealand interests in the Government’s foreign policy, with specific regard to the regions, iwi, and women. Arden stated: “Ultimately, my hope is that New Zealanders recognise themselves in the approach this Government takes”. Notably, the Prime Minister announced the reinstatement of the Cabinet position of Minister for Disarmament and Arms Control, which had been removed under the previous government. The Rt Hon Winston Peters will take on the portfolio, which is understood to be largely symbolic. Other notable speakers included: the
High Commissioners to New Zealand of Australia and the United Kingdom, the Ambassador of Japan, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Tim Wright. Mr Wright’s organisation, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its work in introducing a United Nations ban on nuclear weapons. He was interviewed by Al Jazeera’s Andrew Thomas about the role that nuclear weapons play in war and peace. Victoria University Professor Tim Naish and Dr Fiona Barker gave speeches regarding “Security: threats without borders”. Naish discussed the work of the Antarctic Research Centre in relation to climate change; Barker spoke about migration and how New Zealand is not leading the world with refugee uptake. A recurring theme throughout the conference was the importance of maintaining strong international relations. This was to be achieved by a commitment to the shared values and institutions that have helped preserve peace internationally since World War Two. Ultimately, New Zealand must be prepared to adapt to today’s rapidly changing world. As the Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General Tim Keating put it, even “the laws of the jungle are still laws”. - Liam Powell and Penelope Ainsworth
RALLY AGAINST SEXUAL VIOLENCE TO OCCUR AT LAW SCHOOL VUWSA, Victoria University Law Society, and Victoria University Feminist Society, are planning to host a rally to respond to the culture of sexual violence in the Law school. Recently, numerous allegations of sexual assault against the law firm Russell McVeagh have surfaced. Some of the alleged victims include Victoria University students summer clerking at the firm. The rally will take place next Thursday 15 March. Bethany Paterson, VUWSA’s Welfare Vice President, says she hopes it will encourage the legal community to take some responsibility. - Louise Lin
POLITICAL ROUND-UP GREEN PARTY TO OPPOSE PERKS FROM NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATIONS
if they are able to push Labour and New Zealand First into doing the same and normalise a lack of outside funding in New Zealand Politics. -Jimi Wilson
In a statement this week that they “can’t be bought,” the Green Party has announced it will refuse donations from lobbyists. This issue was addressed in the Labour Party’s governmental overhaul at the end of 2017, however the Greens’ announcement comes as an attempt to “take a lead” on the issue of transparency in Government. “Transparency is a hallmark of any functioning democracy,” Green Party leader James Shaw said in a press release on 3 March 2018. These new changes mean that items gifted to MPs, such as tickets to events or hosted dinners that are not related to their work, will no longer be accepted by members of the Green Party. Members may on occasion still be in attendance of lobbyist funded dinners if they are relevant to their work, however they will be required to ask for an invoice of costs, and this information will be released to the public after the fact. It is likely that these events will be few and far between, as the Green Party has a proportionately low rate of lobbyist interest, comparative to the Labour and National Parties. Shaw’s reasoning for minimal amounts of Green lobbyists is not for lack of interest, but for lack of funding. Shaw had the following to say on the matter: “Generally speaking it isn't communitybased organisations or environmental groups that have the resources to do this kind of bidding. They're not usually organisations who advocate for the homeless or for single mums, or groups that are fighting to protect our water, or native bush." Time will tell if this move from the Greens is merely political grandstanding, or
THE PARTY LINE
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In 2010, prisoners were stripped of the right to vote if they were incarcerated during the time of a general election. The High Court has since deemed this amendment incompatible with our own Bill of Rights Act. With this in mind, what is your party's position on prisoner voting rights? Labour at Vic The right for prisoners to vote was taken away in 2010 by the National Party - Labour wholeheartedly disagrees with this action. It is a human right in New Zealand to have the right to vote, and in no way is taking this human right away legal or morally sound. Democracy is about ensuring that everyone has the ability to have their voice heard, and this action by the National Party does not emulate the democratic system we value in New Zealand. Vic Nats The Young Nats stand by the National Party’s policy on this issue. The National Party lead a social investment approach to prisoner rehabilitation and crime prevention. These policies saw funds invested in local community programs, and organisations which supported individuals who were seen as a high risk of incarceration. The social investment approach is a cornerstone of the National Party’s policy platform and one that we hope the coalition government will continue. - Grahame Woods Young Greens We know and have known for quite some time that denying prisoners the right to
vote violates not only their Human Rights, but the Bill of Rights Act. So the answer to this is simple, we support the human rights of all citizens. The Green Party has always been unequivocal on that. Denying human rights to individuals contradicts the concept of human rights being inalienable. They are applicable to all, at all times. Irrespective of the crime a person has committed, denying them human rights further alienates them from society, when the goal should be rehabilitation and reintegration, so they commit no further crime - but that’s for another Salient column. This is a prime example of why we need to strengthen our Bill of Rights Act, and the protections it provides for all in Aotearoa. This specific piece of legislation that was brought to you by the last National Government, still exists as part of our legal framework irrespective of the violation of the Bill of Rights Act. (Thanks Parliamentary Supremacy - again, for another column) Justice Minister, the Honourable Andrew Little, is beginning work in this area. I want to thank the Minister for his mahi and for his consultative work with our Justice Spokesperson, Golriz Ghahraman. - Max Tweedie Young ACT ACT wants prisoners to regain their ability to vote. We believe the prison population is too high and support measures to reduce the alarming rate of re-offending. At the last election, ACT proposed reducing the prison sentences of inmates if they complete literacy, numeracy, job-readiness and driver licensing courses. Fundamentally, prisoners need positive incentives to become productive law-abiding citizens. - Michael Warren Insights from my Dad Dad couldn’t get back to me on the Party Line question this week, he’s been away fishing “in the hills”. - News Ed. Sash
On Tuesday 13 March at 5pm, Salient is hosting a News Writing workshop. It will be run by Molly McCarthy, former Salient editor, Sophie Boot, who is currently a reporter at BusinessDesk, and Henry Cooke, who is a political reporter for Stuff. If you would like to come along, email firstname.lastname@example.org
*NEWS* JOURNALISTIC INTEGRITY IS SUBJECTIVE
20 things older than 20yr old VUWSA President Marlon Drake An in-depth and hard-hitting journalistic investigation executed by Salient has uncovered that VUWSA President Marlon Drake is but a peppy 20 years of age. In no particular order, a list of 20 things that the not at all existentially-fraught and bitter twenty-somethings in the Salient office have judged to be older than young Master Drake: • Former VUWSA President Rory Lenihan-Ikin’s moustache • The soy milk sitting in the Salient fridge • The course outline for most 100-papers • The insulation in most Wellington flats • Old cans of VB sitting next to my bed • Ciggie butts stubbed out by former Salient editors outside the Hunter Building • Winston Peters’ bottle of office scotch • The 1079 unread emails in my inbox • The Wellington rental crisis • Harvey Weinstein’s career of sexual assault • Sir Geoffrey Palmer’s entire wardrobe • The razor in my shower that is growing mould and appears to have been there since before I moved in • The most recent Windows update • Bitcoin • The stain on my couch from when my flatmate vomited on it in first year • South Sudan as a country • The four most recent Gucci Mane mixtapes • The bottle of 2015 Vintage Merlot that the Salient Chief News Reporter slugged back with alarming speed as he contributed to this listicle • The new Victoria University science building • Jacinda Ardern’s baby - Sasha Beattie and Angus Shaw
House Fire Started and Extinguished by Local Boy
t has been revealed that a large house fire, which began late last Saturday night, was both started and extinguished by the 7 year old son of the owner, Mr Keith Flint. Salient has been informed that the fire was lit after a trip to the annual New Zealand Tractor Convention held in Spark Arena (previously Vector Arena). The boy, previously known for his obsession with tractors, had apparently been denied the opportunity to sit on a new altra Versu T254 Smart Touch tractor by convention security. Altra Versu T254 Smart Touch recently received the Tractor of the Year award from the Tractor of the Year organisation. This denial left the boy distraught, fleeing to hide under a nearby combine harvester for several hours. Upon arriving home sometime after 10pm, the boy went directly to his room. After stripping the large amounts of tractor paraphernalia from his walls and shelves, sources tell Salient he lit the pile on fire in his room with petrol and matches sourced from the family garage. The fire quickly spread. Fortunately, the residents escaped before the house was engulfed. Fire crews attempted to extinguish the fire but struggled due to “the size and intensity” of the flames, local Fire Chief Sam Peyton said. However, sections of the house were saved by quick thinking from Mr Flint’s 7 year old son. The boy entered the house through a side door unnoticed by onlookers. Several minutes later, the flames had gone out. At around 1:35am, the boy exited the now extinguished house through the front door, unscathed. Although most of the house was destroyed, the miraculous actions of the boy saved several items of financial and personal value to the family. When asked for comment by Salient reporters, the boy explained that he was “an extractor fan”. Although nobody was harmed, Fire Chief Peyton “hopes this acts as a timely reminder to check fire alarms, and ensure matches and volatile materials are kept out of reach of children”. -Johnny O’Hagan Brebner
Rejoyce as Steven Steps Down From Politics They say that time heals all wounds, but clearly Steven Joyce never got the memo. In 2016, Joyce’s career received a critical hit in the form of a surprisingly girthy pink dildo, and word on the street is he never really recovered. Joyce announced his resignation from politics on Tuesday 6 March 2018 after failing to become the next leader of the National Party. It is reported that this failure stems directly from the sheer hilarity that he took a sex toy to the face on national television. As a spokesperson from the National Party said, “no one can take him seriously anymore. It’s been three years, but you just can’t make people forget that”. One can only wonder if Joyce has been haunted these past two years by the voice of talk show host John Oliver whispering, “this will never be over for you”. Unfortunately, Joyce was not available for comment. Perhaps the hit to his ego was too much, or perhaps he finally realised he’s just a bit shit. Either way, Joyce is out, and we can all look back with fondness on the time that he was the one getting fucked, for once. - Vita Molyneux
Young Nats Interpret "No" as a Violation of their Human Rights
Incorporated, who “pulled the pin” on all political stalls during O-Week in Nelson due to organisational constraints, the Nelson Young Nats chairman John Gibson apparently thought the matter was a genuine infringement on his human rights, calling the move “unlawful discrimination”. When reached for comment, one National voter and multiple home owner said, “Wow, I’ve never heard of this, but good on Gibson for refusing to accept anything less than complete compliance”. - Cidel Fastro
naccustomed to and confused by the word “no”, the Young Nats of Nelson have literally lodged a complaint with the Human Rights Commission because they weren’t allowed a stall at O-Week. The youth wing of the National Party, which provides a youth perspective to the extremely mainstream and well-represented fiscally-liberal view, is “mad as hell,” according to one source Salient spoke to. Bypassing reasonable convention via discussion with the Student Association of Nelson-Marlborough Institute of Technology
EVEN MORE *NEWS*
SCALDING HOT TAKES
PLS DON'T SUE US
PRESENTED WITHOUT COMMENT
ANYTIME LIBRARY: DOES ANYONE KNOW ANYTHING? Victoria University, in collaboration with the Wellington City Council, have installed the first book lending vending machine in New Zealand at Victoria University (Kelburn campus). Little birds tell Salient that the new Anytime Library apparently has over 300 titles at the Victoria Kelburn community’s instant disposal, not that anyone can tell us anything for a fact. In a statement from a Victoria University Library staff member, “The new machine? Oh, you mean the one that all of us know nothing about?”. On the phone to the Wellington City Library staff, this reporter was put on hold and handed over to “someone who knows more” three times before ultimately getting the person who was “in charge of the project,” – Kathleen’s answering machine. Kathleen has not since called back. The questions asked of the library staff and Kathleen’s answering machine were: What was the lead-up to the installation? Why was it installed? Have you received any feedback on it? Why won’t anyone speak to me? Does the library lending vending machine even exist? Do I even exist? “Put in place just for convenience’s sake,” was the sum total of information provided by the Wellington City Library staff. The question “How is a library lending vending machine that I don’t know how to use and that sits right outside the actual literal library convenient?” is a question for Kathleen’s answering machine another day. - Olivia Philip Editor's note: half an hour before print, Kathleen called us and told us she would email us the contact details of the right person to talk to. 10 pts to Kathleen's answering machine.
KELBURN CAMPUS TRAFFIC FORECAST The influx of a large number of students to Victoria University this year is expected to cause congestion at Kelburn Campus. All commuters are advised to expect delays and plan accordingly, as new students in particular attempt to familiarise themselves with the campus and inevitably get lost as fuck. In particular the areas around New Kirk, Old Kirk, McLaurin, Cotton, Easterfield, Hugh Mackenzie, Murphy, Von Zedlitz, Hunter, the Kelburn overbridge, The Hub, and the Student Union Building, are expected to suffer especially bad congestion as students crowd around lecture theatre entrances, walk six abreast in that hallway where The Lab is, and generally attempt to walk against the flow of traffic and be as inconvenient as possible. Commuters are advised plan for these delays by finding alternative routes, leaving extra time to get to class, or avoiding lectures altogether. Advice has also been given to law students unfamiliar with the Old Government Buildings to allow extra time to navigate “the most confusing goddamn building I’ve seen”. Faculty are still trying and failing to produce a map of the building. Bad weather may also worsen congestion as people opt to avoid even brief exposures to light rain and wind. Commuters are also advised to carry snow chains at all times, as the capital nears winter. - Johnny O’Hagan Brebner
Via Sam Rutledge,
guest writer for The Spinoff
LETTERS Dear Salient, LETTER OF THE WEEK*
As a semi-regular reader of your magazine I feel inclined to comment on this year's edition thus far.
Hello and happy first week back,
Firstly, I love the new design, and Ruby Ash does a terrific job of the illustrations.
I'm loving the new-look Salient, content and looks-wise it is a real return to form, however I am dismayed by the glaring lack of one of Salient's most treasured features, the beloved crossword. I know I speak for many when I say it is one of the few things that I look forward to about a Monday.
Secondly, where's the crossword? It was one of the main reasons I would pick up the mag every Monday! I'm afraid sudoku just doesn't cut it. Cheers,
Consequently, I plead with you to reinstate the crossword. Offerings by other media outlets just aren't up to scratch compared to the brilliance that was previous years' crosswords, they're all either too difficult, boring and/or made for retirees. Keep up the great work but please, please Salient, return to your crossword-laden ways, we're all counting on it.
A semi-regular reader P. S. Please pass on to Gus Mitchell my appreciation of his excellent "Super Science Trends" column. His latest piece on Elon Musk's space revolution was well-informed and a topic that deserves widespread attention. I too felt emotional at seeing two rocket boosters simultaneously land upright. Keep it up, Gus and SpaceX.
Yours faithfully, Perman Puzzler
Hey Salient, I had lost faith the the magazine last year with its awful and illegible format and empty content, but I am pleasantly surprised by the first issue of 2018, especially the *news* section. Keep up the good work. Signed,
Send us letters to email@example.com otherwise we are just over here playing with ourselves. Your feedback and opinions are valid (maybe).
A renewed subscriber (can I call myself that if they're free?)
*Letter of the Week Gets a $10 Vic Books Voucher
Hi Salient, Great work moving back to A4 much better to read. Your old friend Laintal
NOTICES STROKE AWARENESS WEEK 3-14 April 2018 We have noticed the incidence of stroke in younger people is on the rise. We are keen to get Stroke Awareness out to as many places as possible and to raise funds to increase the hours of our Field Officers working in the community with stroke survivors. If you can help in any way ie holding a Big Blue Brunch or a gold coin event please call us on 0800 2988 58 or email stroke@ strokecentral.org.nz
VICTORIA UNIVERSITY TAEKWONDO CLUB (WORLD TAEKWONDO FEDERATION) Interested in Taekwondo? New to Taekwondo? Learned Taekwondo before? Come along and join us! Great way to keep fit and have fun! Training times: Wednesday 6.30pm - 8.00pm Dance Room, Victoria University Recreation Centre Saturday 3.30pm - 5.00pm Dance Room, Victoria University Recreation Centre What you need: Drink bottle, comfy trousers/shorts, t-shirt Contact us:vuwtkd@ outlook.com We are affiliated to the Taekwondo Union of NZ (TUNZ)
CAREERS AND EMPLOYMENT: MARCH MADNESS! Your career development and employment experts on campus. Wide range of resources and tips on job applications, interview techniques and career opportunities. CV checking service available. HU120! Come along to our Commerce and Law Careers Expo on Thursday 15 March from 11am-2pm in Rutherford House. Network with potential employers and fellow students, and learn about grad programmes and internships for 2018/2019. We also have employer presentations booked in throughout March from employers like ANZ, Reserve Bank, KPMG, Deloitte, MFAT, Audit NZ and MORE. Check out CareerHub for more info and to RSVP. Places are limited so reserve your spot now!
LUKE WILLIS THOMPSON 21.2.18–15.4.18
Adam Art Gallery Te Pātaka Toi, Victoria University of Wellington, Gate 3, Kelburn Parade, Tuesday – Sunday 11–5pm, www.adamartgallery.org.nz The gallery is located beside the Student Union Building on Kelburn campus.
OPINION PLAIT MY PITS
So I started working this new job, right. I really like this job and I want to keep this job so for ambiguity’s sake we’re gonna call this job This Job (yes thank you I am a fountain of originality). I see a lot of dudes at This Job. A reasonable amount of older dudes. A lot of dudes whose filters disappeared about three drinks ago. And my dudes, y’all really have some thoughts about armpit hair on a girl, huh???
’m going to start a tally of all the times my armpit hair gets commented on by dudes at This Job. One for the dude who asked me to lift up my arm as I was pouring a beer only to sneer at me in disgust (grow up, Ian, I didn’t sneer at your bald spot and that was lowhanging fruit). Add two for the dudes who old mate Ian tapped on the shoulder to come witness the utter madness that is a woman who’s armpits look just like his own. Add one for the guy who, all in the same breath, commented on my armpit hair and asked me what ‘misogyny’ meant (fucking really my dude? In 2017?). They say women aren’t funny, but two more for the couple of dudes in genuine hysterics as I cleaned tables: “oh my god look but she’s got armpit hair!!!”. What’s that, six? And that’s just one shift. I had a very wholesome conversation with a pretty incredible friend that made me stop shaving my pits. She talked about how bodies are bodies, and about learning to love your body, and about how our natural hair is kinda beautiful, actually. There’s nothing wrong with shaving if that’s what you wanna do, but it’s wild to me how repulsed people are by something that grows naturally on our bodies. Having said that, I’m not going to try and pretend that I don’t like shocking people with it; I love making dudes uncomfortable with my pits. You know why? Because dudes have been making me feel uncomfortable with my body hair for as long as I can recall. I remember being around 10 – barely a few light blonde hairs under my arms – and a male relative pointing out my “hairy pits” and telling me I’d have to start shaving soon. I remember boys at high school making fun of the hair on my arms, which I promptly went home and shaved. I remember an early boyfriend laughing with his friends at my expense,
because at 14 I didn’t realise shaving your vagina was indicative of your worth. I remember hating shaving but having it become something I associated with femininity and with feeling pretty and with feeling worthy – worthy of what I’m not entirely sure. Ironically, when I shaved my head in seventh form a boy messaged me some shit like “whered ur hair go lol u lookd cuter with hair” well ok Chad what is the ideal amount of hair you’d like to see on your women, you’ve got my attention now, fucking dazzle me. On Tinder, a picture where it’s obvious I don’t shave my pits is a pretty good screening system; the bin bags take themselves out. This one guy told me he was intimidated by my pits because “I’m quite compedative and armpit hair is usually a competition I won comfortably with female company” (that’s a direct quote); another guy asked me if I grew them out “full time or just for a laugh,” then scrambled to explain that “no I think it’s great I have no issues with it but the thing is I have really massive issues with it” (I may be paraphrasing on this one); someone else messaged me saying “appreciate the under arm hair,” which just left me confused as to whether or not he was expecting me to appreciate his pits in return. Top tip for men who don’t know me, and who yet feel the urge to give me their two cents on my armpit hair – don’t. That’s the thing, whether your reaction is good or bad or somewhere in between, I didn’t ask. Your approval or lack thereof means jack shit to me, Craig. You’re nearing the end of your forties drinking alone in a club and your moustache is shit, Craig. Unless I bring it up or it otherwise comes up organically, stick to small chat about the weather and let me live my fucking life, Craig.
BY CAAVAN WILD
Raiders of lost property I was 10 when I fell in love with materialism.
new shoes. But youth minimum - which at the time was $8.20? It was at once an insult and a hand up. A Job 38:11 moment: Here you will come, but no further.
Specifically: a pair of Nikes. Rebel Sport had just set up in New Plymouth and it was, literally, the talk of the town. This was the first sports store that didn’t sell guns and ammunition next to their running shoes. No, Rebel Sport had all sorts of branded paraphernalia that you never knew you needed until you went in. And it was all such sweet forbidden fruit to someone like me, with friends like mine.
I was too young for a job, but I wasn’t above “borrowing” other people’s gears and grabbing someone’s Adidas from the lost property box. Two sizes too big but for two days I was a superstar in superstars, albeit around my primary school. Crying in the principal’s office, picking up rubbish for two days after the teachers caught me? Worth it. Obviously, they knew the shoes weren’t mine. I think everyone knew, apart from myself. But none of that mattered. We were bogans, living our bogan best lives.
Of course – these Nikes would be out of the question. My Mum grew up with eight siblings. So Catholic it was almost laughable. The toilet paper came off the roll so mum put in a ziplock bag. Waste not want not. You see our VHS player in 2009? You see our 1985 Mitsubishi Mirage, four different coloured doors you have to slam shut and when you shut one another jumps open, like some bogan Benny Hill pantomime? Shoes that probably cost as much as a week’s groceries? I think not. But I was blissfully unaware. Making ends meet was a mystical science to a 10 year old, and dreams were especially free. We all would soon learn the true cost of funding our self-esteem through “borrowed” clothes. But it was summer 2006, and material jealousy burned brighter in me than the New Plymouth sun. 90% humidity.
Of course it never lasted. In Taranaki the rain is never far away, and white shoes can only gleam under the sun for so long. They were not cat burglars, they were young kids ripping off tags and stuffing shoes into backpacks. I was too young to accompany them, left behind for better or worse. I escaped the trespasses and police cautions, those frivolous things which made any sort of job after school impossible to obtain.
As humans, we make demons of everything we don’t understand. Whoever dealt with those boys did something like that. $8.20 to fill their hours, if they were lucky enough to be employed. We were bogans, living Wanting to look cool doesn’t make For us, mufti days were a huge affair. our bogan best lives. You best believe we made sure all you a felon. Those clothes made our gears were washed and dried their thin chests swell with pride, by the night before. Nike shox? Check. Nike socks? an emotion rarely seen amongst the dumped washing Check. The only thing unbranded were our undies. We machines and waterlogged mattresses scattered across were like modern day dandies, overly concerned with the street. It made them think that perhaps they could live our appearance but not above spitting in public. their lives free from the amber light of the bottle that casts its shadow over their families, free from the crystal in the Labels were an escape for boys like Wiremu, who wore light bulb that wraps itself around brothers sisters cousins. their brother’s hand me downs, the third in a family of We were all just playing make believe, desperately eight crammed into a state house. In a corner of that wanting to live the costumed lives we had created. house, tucked away from blackened light bulbs and empty fridges, were shoes and clothes, akin to a superhero suit. God helps those who help themselves. I can’t say I Wear this and become more than you ever dreamed, believe in a God anymore but my friends sure didn’t even if just for the day. Step through the battered door get any help. Benefits, bills, and kids of their own had and across the beaten lawn, taking care not to stand in a separating effect. I lost touch with them, they lost touch muddy patches. Reach the road outside to complete your with their childhood innocence. Nothing is more tolling transformation. He had a Denver Nuggets jersey in pale on the soul than a life lived perilously close to splitting at blue and he was the suburban dream, looking like an the seams. extra in a Mario video. Only, he was loitering outside a dairy, and the only cameras on him would be security I still covet clothes. I still worship those same idols. I don’t ones. know if the attraction is the same as it was when I was ten, or whether I now dress to remember. To remember Looking good came before learning. Hemi dropped out the feeling of invincibility, as if everything was achievable of school to work at McDonald’s. $210 a week seemed if you were wearing the right gears. To remember my like a lot to us. Nikes could only do so much to lift the friends who showed me the power of transfiguration, the soul, the way it weighs after a night of constant heat, beauty of make believe. Wear this and reach your next the stench of fried food and gang signs in the drive-thru. form, something more. Even if just for the day. Undoubtedly his parents wanted more for him than some
t’s pretty cool being black.
We get to talking about rappers, hip-hop, indie and all these different genres and artists that we have in common. As Ubers arrive and people leave, our conversation continues to be the only constant I can rely on in this earthquake-prone mouldy death trap with no windows. Things progress and I gotta make sure I’m not perceived as too easy so I explain I got work in the morning (you can say this to any drunk girl if you need to call it quits and she’ll fully support you getting your life together). After a big old goodbye and the exchange of Instagram handles and phone numbers, I leave. As I’m in conversation with my Uber driver, I quickly send a “Hope you have a good night, stay healthy” text message to make sure she knows I’m not fully ditching. No reply.
I mean most of the time apart from the stereotypes about fried chicken, ice cold grape soda, my baguettelong-schlong and my eight girlfriends who I can’t pay child support to. Other than that it’s pretty smooth sailing, right? Haha. Fuck no. Take an average Friday night for example. I get an invite to a 40-person house party in the middle of town. That type of party with a decent speaker set up, your standard game of beer pong and kings cup on opposite sides of the room and one girl vomiting near the entrance wanting to know where Patrick is.
Two days later I get an invite to lunch at Sweet Mother’s Kitchen for a milkshake and some curly fries; a ‘date’. I text my mans about the situation and he’s making sure I don’t order any meat in case she’s vegetarian and wear clean socks in case I end up sliding thru. I arrive and we immediately resume our conversation about 90’s hip hop and gigs we’ve been to.
Don’t know who Patrick is, but this is pretty good vibe for me so excuse me while I step over your recycled ramen noodle soup that smells of gin and vege stock. What’s the most offensive thing that could happen? Someone come up and ask me what music I listen to? Nah, surely not. Someone calling me Big Shaq for the whole night and shouting skrra pap pap at me? Barely. Someone rapping the whole Juicy chorus and pointing their "Yeah, and like trigger fingers to me when are like REALLY “If you don’t know, now you know niggaaaa” comes on. Maybe. I’m gonna continue to be a ‘good sport’ about those sorts of things because if I split your lip and stand on your chest there’s no way of explaining it to the police that doesn’t end in my face up against the wall or on the pavement. Apparently ‘it’s because he offended me’, doesn’t work anymore according to my girls who get their parts grabbed on the regular, so I’m just gonna act like I didn’t hear you.
We get into more personal topics like "where do you call home’, ‘what’s your relationship with your parents", "why you not wearing those all of my family damn overalls" etc. Chips into black guys." and guacamole arrive as we discuss close friends, family and mutual friends. She explains how she’s very open about her lifestyle and her family are very liberal. I explain my West Indian background and how my heritage shapes the person I am. I pick up a chip, dip it in hot salsa and place it in my mouth. As my mouth closes, hers opens, and starts a sentence that would change everything. I bite down through the chip, through my tongue and through the ends of my world as she says “Yeah, and like all of my family are like REALLY into black guys”.
I’m just gonna pick up my drink, make my way over to the speakers and make sure we end up hearing some BROCKHAMPTON or JHus before the end of the night. As I get my request in I am approached by a girl in denim overalls and gold hoops. She asks what I’m playing after this and says I gotta play some Mick Jenkins or Cousin Stizz. Immediately intrigued by her music and fashion sense.
So, in an effort to avoid the Sunken Place and end up in Jordan Peele’s next film as Scalped Head Extra #3, I quickly ended the date and told her I had go read Malcolm X books and eat giblets with my niggas (not quite what I said but I’m sure that’s what she heard it as). It may have been unnecessary to recount the dating process as it had occurred thus far in this much detail, but I want you to live my life, and feel my pain, as I felt reduced from a confident young black male to a caricature in a second.
Denim overalls are my one weakness. You could be on trial for conspiracy against the government, thirteen counts of assault, selling underground uranium and accused of doing a hit and run on me last Sunday; if you walk in the court with denim overalls I’ll still have to ask what prison you gonna be staying at and what your timetable looking like.
3/10, only kept alive by denim overalls.
BY KII SMALL
“You’re the worst Asian I’ve ever met. What are you going to tell your parents?” Tom said, laughing. It shouldn’t have come as any surprise when I received my year 12 report card. All through high school, my fears lived in a square, dimly lit classroom, filled with poorly aligned posters. Algebra, calculus, geometry: I didn’t understand any of it. What I did understand was this: as with any problem, one of two outcomes is possible. Success or failure. When it came to maths, I was always a failure. For some reason Tom and I thought it would be a good idea to open our cards together. An oath to one another in sharing our mutual pain and suffering. We both looked at my card with the same concern. “It’ll be alright, the white guy will tutor the Asian for her maths final,” he cheekily proclaimed.
For most of my life I have been classed as a “shit Asian”. Asians are overachievers who bend over backwards to please their academically demanding parents. Their intelligence is uniform, limited to the likes of math, science, and IT. They are organized, grade-obsessed pre-med students, like Jill Chen in Carrie Diaries. Based on these assumptions, I’m pretty much a disappointment in every respect. In school, amongst my peers, or at home, I was often reminded of my failure to meet expectations. More often than not, I ignored the sting of failure in efforts to find the humour in the whole situation. I didn’t want to be one of those Asians that found it exhausting to bear their visible racial identities as burdens. So, I played the “shit Asian” stereotype to death. My classmates found it funny, poking fun at 18
The Pity and Pleasure of being a Shit Asian the irony of it all. At the time, it felt good knowing that articles, trying to learn everything possible from my others liked having me around. English class. I knew that if I was up past 2am doing I am often told that the stereotyping of Asians as something this lame, then there must be a reason. I rich, successful, and good at maths, is a good thing. wanted to know everything, I needed to know. For That Asians like myself should be flattered. It is hard the first time, I had fallen into this model student type to call those who think they are complimenting you form, but it didn’t fit the mold. For many Asians, the “racist”. But positive racism is still racism, and pinning definition of success is framed rather narrowly — a set of ideals to a given race masks the diversity that receiving straight As, graduating from a prestigious exists within it. university and pursuing an advanced degree. Showing We are labelled as a success story, devoid an interest in the arts is synonymous with “not making of recognition of the continued discrimination we it”. Asian parents frequently feel a need to shepherd face. Asians are frequently referred to as the their children into high-status professions so that they “model minority,” meaning that despite the struggles can be shielded from a world of instability. The last experienced, we represent what others should aspire thing I wanted was to be a burden to my parents by to be. Then we’re forced to succumb to the high studying something like literature. standard that societal stereotypes have imposed. This I later realised that my interest towards law was as blanket label of “Asian” marked the beginning of how shallow as a shot glass and as short-lived as a pack of I would navigate my feelings, while being so visibly cigarettes. No number of stimulants or good times were classified by my background. Only now do I realise sufficient in masking the fact that I hated law. I had the profound impact it has had on the way that I chose worked so hard to suit a criterion but no matter how to speak, dress, and act. hard I tried, I just couldn’t fit into the model minority Like every other 18-year-old, I had to choose what type form. I began nursing a paranoia subdued by I would study after school. For most of my friends, it a tough self-loathing. Underpinning everything, I felt came easy. They had spent senior school narrowing shame and inadequacy. By the end of 2016 I decided down their list. But for me, many of the “smart Asian” to change my degree, and chose instead to pursue stereotypes served to ingrain the idea that intelligence arts and commerce. If I told you I was proud of my was monolithic. That it was fit for a single mold and was decision, I would be lying. by no means malleable. For As shit as it sounds, at the first time, I was confronted The last thing I wanted was to be a times I wish I had just chosen with the hypervisibility of my burden to my parents by studying a stats paper for my elective. own being, I was taught to Even if my contentment with something like literature. mind my own social position, law was a façade, I was still a position that had been predetermined for me. happy with pretending. It made life so much fucking Going off to university, I had no idea what I was easier. Even now, as I try to chase my passions, I doing, but like most, I was sure that I would figure haven’t stopped the exhausting endeavor of trying to it out. Initially, I was desensitized by how mundane live in line with how I’m supposed to behave based my lectures were, convinced that this was how it was on the way I look. I often catch myself justifying why supposed to be. During the weekdays I memorised, I choose to study what I do. As if pursuing anything spewed out, and then forgot, pages upon pages of outside of law, engineering, or medicine needs a case law. I was living in a new city, meeting people, reason. The thing is, most of us, myself included, are and partying. I was able to convince myself that used to the status quo. We are accustomed to order law was a good match. Friday night antics were and what makes sense. successful in rattling away any brewing self-doubt. At this point I feel like the “shit Asian” stereotype And somehow, I managed to get good marks. For the has come full circle. The problem with the model most part, I was happy. minority myth is that it holds so much subtext of At the end of first semester I was advised to take dominant attitudes and understandings of Asians up an elective. Nothing interested me, so at random, which are simply not true. Despite all of this, navigating I chose an English subject called Introduction to who I want to be against a given manuscript has been Narrative. one of the most stressful, rewarding, and liberating There are so many stories about people chasing challenges that I have faced. More than anything, I their dreams. They’re all sweet, endearing, and want other minorities to understand that we do not romanticised. However, the moment I realised that I’d need to accept the stereotypes that others impose. prefer to pursue writing than law was pretty shit. For We do not need to accept the model minority myth most of first year I was notorious for doing everything and convince ourselves that it is a good thing. Just last minute, doing the bare minimum and usually like any other stereotype, it is a trap. By solely having it work out by chance. Yet here I was, sitting at relying on surface level appearances and false racial my desk at 2:30am, finding myself in the pits of journal stereotypes, we belittle each other’s dreams. 19
By Daniel Smith
Scenes of Debauchery at Laneway 2018 Now don’t get me wrong. I loved Laneway. The opportunity to see a vast array of some of the best acts in the world all in one of our most beautiful central city parks is overall a great experience. However, when any enormous gathering of people comes together, a darker side of humanity is brought out. You see, I have a theory about crowds. It is crowds you see screaming “Heil Hitler!” at the Nuremberg rally. Crowds who marched millions of prisoners out to Siberian gulags. Crowds of military who fired upon protesting students at Tiananmen Square. Wherever there are crowds, the grim spectre of evil follows closely. Here are but a few of the manifestations of this debaucherous evil that I witnessed at St. Jerome’s Laneway 2018.
crowd, with an ass-slap, a hair grab, and a head pat. Within 4 seconds the man had managed to pull off a trifecta triple combo of douchebaggy inappropriate touching of women. Friends or not, I am a strong believer of keep your damn hands to yourself. The exception to the rule is within consenting couples, but in the case that this man was greeting the three wives of his polyamorous relationship I would still list the interaction as a borderline case of vomit inducing P.D.A. And we are not even going to get started on the P.D.A. Walking through the park I noticed a sunburnt shirtless man in the process of trying to brazenly befriend a group he did not know. Upon being rejected, he turned his attentions to another man walking in front of me, who was wearing ripped jeans, which is an important piece of information to gain the small token of sense the next interaction contains:
In many developed countries it is considered uncouth to smoke in a crowd. This is not so in New Zealand, but it should be, especially when the durry chuffers are those who barely scraped past the Laneway age limit of 18. As an ex-smoker these kids are easy to spot; wet pursed lips eagerly slobbering over the filter, goobing it up to such a degree that what enters the mouth is the more nicotine stained saliva than smoke. They pass it among themselves to make the most of the coveted item, each one adding more and more saliva to the sopping filter. They dance around, vigorously waving the cigarette in the faces of those that surround them, taking no care to avoid the eyes or orifices of others. I want to grab their shoulders and shake them hard, screaming, “MAC DEMARCO IS NOT IMPRESSED YOU FOOLS!”
Shirtless man: “Hey bro, your jeans are ripped!” Ripped jeans man, while he keeps walking: “Uh yeah, ha ha.” Shirtless man: “And you’re a cunt.” The ripped jeans man had the self-control that his conversationalist obviously lacked, and kept walking. All I could do was give the most evil stare I could summon toward the shirtless man and feel sorry for his mother, who like all mothers probably had no intention to bring such a cretinous waste of breath into the world.
Human decency is a delicate and fragile commodity. One behaviour that stomps all over it is people who incessantly talk during a set. My initial reaction to this when it first happened was anger at the loud, blokey voices and their braying guffaws. This reaction was shared by those around me, I counted seven separate dirty looks being shot the way of the talkers. But as the set continued, and the consistent verbal interruptions along with it, my anger turned to pity. God, what a terrible fate is beholden to the mind so twisted and black that it is pain to spend 30 minutes shut up within it. What cruel malignant god created a human to whom it was pain to be kept silent within their own head. My eyes welled up with tears of empathy for these pitiable individuals who could not bear to spend a moment in silence. But although I pity them, if you can’t shut up, don’t go to a freaking event where most people have paid for a day of listening. I was happy to see that Laneway had created a hotline to call if any problems arose. I had hoped that this would help quell most of the negative behaviour. Unfortunately it could not stop everything. I saw a man, jolly and bearded, with a face reddened from being 4 hours deep into day-drinking, greet three female friends who had approached him in the
Surely these brief vignettes of cruelty towards the human spirit are only the tip of the iceberg. I did not attend the Mac Demarco show, whose fans could probably fill a book on terrible concert etiquette (I should know, I opened for him, so have seen his durry goobing attention seeking teeny bopper fans from a stage high view. Kids, listen to your mothers. You really don’t look cool smoking). Overall I had a good time, but god damn there's just something about crowds ai. I reckon concerts should develop an asshole screening device, perhaps a quiz with loaded questions such as “Did you vote for ACT?” or “Do you find the comedian known as ‘Chopper’ funny?” I think there is always probably going to be some negativity at large gatherings. It really would be great if certain people weren’t there. And if you disagree, you are probably one of them. Yours with relative sincerity, A grumpy young man. 21
Getting to Know GRANT GUILFORD LOUISE LIN
A few Fridays ago, I asked around the office, "anyone Then he doesn't stop talking for a solid ten minutes. got dirt on Grant Guilford? I'm about to do an A lot of it is good information, he's telling me about interview with him." the effects of first year fee free - hasn’t affected Kii, the Station Co-Manager, says, "I've heard he enrolments that much apparently - and the change in can be a bit of a..." he trails off. "I'll go and see what the Education Act which makes it compulsory to have I can find." Ruby, our designer, says, "ask him if he students and staff on the University Council, among made any New Year's resolutions. Ask for a weird fact other things. But I was a little surprised by such a long about him." Jess Scott, who had come into the office answer. to talk about starting a fashion column, says, "ask him I ask him to tell me a bit about himself and his role what's the worst date he's been on." at the University. This time, he goes on for a good Grant Guilford is Victoria's Vice-Chancellor - a 20 minutes, about his job, universities, the history of university's equivalent of a universities... I tried really CEO. He's from Auckland, I start to panic. I worry that we'll use hard to pay attention and his last job was the up all the interview time this way, me at first. Really I did. Dean of the Massey University council. Debt. Vet School. Salient had listening mutely, waiting for a break in Staff. Responsibility. Risk. interviewed him in 2014, Leadership. Wellbeing. his speech that never comes. back when he first started. Accessibility. Strategy. They asked him if he was just another boring white Humboldtian model. Financial constraints. man. He said he was white but not boring. They also But he keeps talking. And talking. I start to panic. I asked him if he had smoked pot. He said yes. They worry that we'll use up all the interview time this way, me listening mutely, waiting for a break in his speech then concluded that he was a GC. I’m met in the foyer and escorted to Grant's office. that never comes. I try to cut into his flow but I can't I've never been escorted to an interview before. figure out how to do it without rudely interrupting him. Feels kinda fancy. He looks exactly like the photos of I look at my phone. I realise that the record function him online, which is strange because hardly anyone wasn't even on. I try to surreptitiously start recording. I know looks exactly like the photos of himself. He's I wonder if he notices the anxiety in my eyes. Finally, I muster up the courage and I interrupt possibly even wearing the same suit. I ask him how his day is going. “Good,” he says, and proceeds to talk him. "Sorry to interrupt, but I was just wondering how about a meeting he had with the Association of Vice- much time we have?" "As long as you like - a good half hour," he replies. Chancellors this morning. 22
Getting to know Grant Guilford I was surprised. Phew. I wasn't gonna get ushered out of the room at the end of his monologue after all. He spends a lot of time talking about the University’s financial situation. Must be something that Vice-Chancellors get concerned about. He tells me, with a hint of resentment, about how the Government isn't increasing the University's funding. We need more funding every year, he says, not only to keep up with inflation, but because staffing costs are going up, since we keep promoting our staff. After this interview, various people have pointed out to me that the various construction and earthquake proofing projects around campus may also have contributed to increased costs. "What do you tend to spend your wage on personally?" I ask. Last year, Grant's salary was between $540,000 and $549,000. "Mainly on environmental stuff," he says, "we've got two large tracts of bush my wife and I own. One in Nelson Lakes area, and we've got a bush block up near Waikato/ Auckland, we spent the holidays cleaning that up." I tell him, “cos I think it's hard for students to imagine getting paid that much, or why someone would need that much." When I said "students", I meant me, really. High paychecks confuse me. What do you even do with that much money? He replies, "yeah, it's not so much about wanting to get paid that much, that's the going rate for people with my level of responsibility. The salary is paying for the accountability that we have, also, from a business sense, the chief exec earns that salary, many times over. Generally for professionals you're looking to earn three times your salary. All of the Vice-Chancellors I know in NZ - none of them are driven by their salary, that's just what you get paid when you are at that level.” "Would you take a pay cut to give the university more money?" I ask. He says, “I wouldn't... because it's a bad look - it would look like I was worth less compared to other people in similar roles.” Throughout the afternoon, he often mentions how much the University is tied to the Government for funding. "Is that something you wish there was more or less of?" I ask. "Less of," Grant replies. "We rely heavily on our autonomy, that's why we can play this critic and conscience role, and that autonomy is granted to us under the legislation, but you immediately lose it in real terms if you aren't financially secure. Whoever holds the checkbook, calls the shots." I learnt some other things about Grant Guilford throughout the course of the afternoon. His favourite
colour is green. His working day is 7am-10pm, and he’s had 5-6 hours of sleep per weeknight for the last ten years. He ate muesli for breakfast. His wife's at their 70 acre Waikato farm at the moment. They've got five kids and 50 sheep. Sometimes his wife comes down to Wellington, if there's a function that's appropriate for her to attend. I ask him if he enjoys his lifestyle. "I do." he says. "Why?" I ask. He replies "you're doing a lot of good. You're moving obstacles for others to do good things. You're not a hero leader, ranting and raving under bright lights, you're here to care about your people, care about your students. You gotta have a sense of contribution to the community, and that creates a sense of wellbeing. I couldn't respect myself if I was just out there if i was running a big business trying to make money". "Do you think you are a good person?" I ask. "Well…," he says, "I try to be... I s'pose you've gotta ask others. But I do feel that people in universities, including Vice-Chancellors, do a lot of good in our society. Through what we do - teaching and research, also the role we play in society - speaking truth to power." Towards the end of the interview, I ask Grant what he thinks the biggest issue facing students is. He replies, "well, one that I worry about the most is wellbeing. We're seeing a lot of anxiety... some of that is anxiety is completely normal, new university, coursework, to some extent anxiety is the medicalisation of a completely normal feeling. But that said, there are high levels of anxiety and stress in the student body. Whether or not it's normal, it's there, and that sometimes leads to challenges with mental health, self harm, so all of that's a big worry. Sometimes there is genuine depression as opposed to unhappiness. but there's many causes, sexual identity issues, money issues, performance issues, family issues, cultural issues, cultural alienation issues... it's complicated." It sounds like he's a little unsure about the line between ‘normal’ and mental illness. I'm also surprised that he didn't mention housing. Maybe he hasn't been on Vic Deals or talked to any students recently. Or maybe he just forgot to bring it up. I asked Grant what his favourite band was. "R.E.M." he said. "What's your favourite song?" I ask him. "I don't know... I don't have one." he replies. "What about favourite album, do you have one of those?" " I've got all their albums... I can picture it" he says. "I just can't remember what it's called. But anyway, there's not many of their songs I don't like." 23
Salman Abbasnejad, Castle Point, Dig
gital Illustration, 420 x 594 mm, 2017
We’re going full force into week two, yes boi. My last two columns were fun and informative, but would like to take a moment to talk some real shit. I’m talking about your wellbeing! Yes, you. And the reason I’m going to bring it up in week two is because otherwise the first you might hear of it will be in week six, and everybody knows that week six can be pretty hundies, so you might not get the memo then.
Kia ora e te whānau! Simran here. I’m the Academic Vice-President for VUWSA in 2018! This means I am committed to an equitable representative strong student voice. I need your help! You may know about class representatives already, but if you don’t here’s a little break down. Class Reps: - Act as a channel of communication between lecturers and the class. - Provide feedback about how the course and assessment pieces are going. - Point students in the right direction for help and towards services offered – e.g. Student Learning, Career Services. If you’re keen to make a difference in your class (and get a few cheeky Vic Plus points on the side), put your hand up to be a class rep! Nominations and elections will happen in the first two weeks of lectures, so make sure to express your interest to your lecturer. You will be fully supported with a short online training module, as well as regular catch-ups over the trimester. If you want to get involved further, we are still looking for delegates for the faculties of Science, Health, and Education. Faculty Delegates are pretty much the next step after class representative: you are representing your peers on the university’s Faculty Boards. Thought about nominating yourself for VUWSA Education Officer 2018? The Education Officer role is unique in that it is totally what you make it! You can get creative and engage with the academic space in whichever way you see fit. Join us and we’ll have a stunner of a year. Nominations close on Wednesday the 14th of March, and nomination forms can be collected from the VUWSA reception. The by-election will be held on Wednesday the 21st of March in the Hub from 12pm, and in-person voting will be available there throughout the day. My door is always open, so if you have any projects you’d like to see happen, or any questions, issues, or concerns,please feel free to come and talk to me! The VUWSA office will always welcome you and support you with anything you need. Even if you just want to come in for a yarn, come say hi and pop by!
First of all, talking about your wellbeing doesn’t have to be the darkest thing in the world. It’s fine to look after yourself in an entirely positive way. Use the spare time and spare thoughts you have now to just think a tiny bit about how you’re going to prepare for lectures, assignments, and exams in relation to your mental health. For me it’s trying to go to the gym as regularly as possible, or at the very least going for a nice walk. Not exactly radical advice, you have probably heard it before, and you will hear it again. The point is, now’s a good time to get prepped for the weeks ahead! Every year has new challenges, and at times you will feel isolated. Let me be clear now and say that you are not alone. Your peers will often feel just as stressed as you around assessment time, and your lecturers will feel quite a bit of pressure too! We all need to realize that wellbeing is a moving and changing thing for all of us, and now is a good time to start thinking about how you’re going to handle the mahi that awaits you over the next few weeks. That’s all for now, look after yourselves whanau, and remember that you are worth it!
Imagine two groups of hunter-gatherers in the year 2,000,000 BC. Group A’s members are completely amoral. They have no concept of fairness or justice or duty, and pursue their own desires independently of moral constraints. Group A’s members steal from each other when no one is looking. They never risk their lives to help each other. Group A cannot hunt cooperatively, because every member tries to shirk their duties, and no one is willing to make a sacrifice for the common good. By contrast, Group B’s members have a concept of morality, and make moral judgements. Moreover, they make specific types of moral judgements: judgments about duty (which help the group cooperate), judgements about murder and theft (which stop the group’s members from harming each other, and keeps the group intact), and judgements about fairness and justice (which help establish a working set of rules). In the long-term, Group B’s members are far more likely to survive and reproduce. This leads us to a startling realisation – it is very likely that evolutionary pressures selected us to both make moral judgements generally, and to make the specific sorts of moral judgements that we make today. Of course, the story that I offered above is merely a made-up just-so story, and doesn’t have any scientific authority behind it. But it is very likely that the moral judgements we make today are shaped by evolutionary pressures. And this has troubling implications for “moral realists” – people who think that our beliefs about objective moral truths are justified. It implies that we may not actually have good reasons to think that (for example) murder is wrong. This is the argument advanced by the philosophers Sharon Street and Richard Joyce. Street begins by distinguishing between two possibilities. The first is that evolutionary pressures selected us to have true moral beliefs. This is plausibly true in the case of mathematical
beliefs: evolution selected us to believe that 1+1=2 because it is true that 1+1=2. As Joyce points out, if a hunter-gatherer in 2,000,000 BC saw one lion go behind a bush and then another lion go behind the same bush, it would have been evolutionarily advantageous to believe that there were now two lions behind the bush. Had it instead been the case that one lion plus one lion equals three, evolution would have selected us to believe that 1+1=3. So evolution selected us to have “truth-tracking” mathematical beliefs. But this doesn’t seem to be the case for our moral beliefs. If it were true, for example, that we are morally required to kill our own children, it seems that evolution would still select us to believe that we are morally required to protect our children (since killing your offspring is not the most successful reproductive strategy). So the evolutionary processes which created our moral beliefs were probably not truth-tracking. This is the second possibility that Street considers — that evolution selected us to have certain moral beliefs, independently of the truth of those moral beliefs. But then, if evolution systematically distorted our moral beliefs in ways which were not truth-tracking, how are we justified in thinking that our moral beliefs are true? Street concludes that we cannot be justified in believing in any objective moral truths. Does this mean that we ought to dispense with moral rules? Not necessarily. Street is not an amoralist – she is a “constructivist.” She believes that moral rules do exist, but only as a result of the existence and nature of human minds. Joyce, by contrast, is a “moral error theorist” – he believes that moral discourse is systematically flawed, and that no moral rules exist at all. But this belief is the result of other arguments. This argument at most proves that we are not justified in believing in objective moral facts – it does not prove that no moral facts exist.
NT: Te Ara Tauira Nopera McCarthy E tipu, e rea: The hopes and challenges of Maori students at law school. "E tipu, e rea, mō ngā rā o tō ao, ko tō ringa ki ngā rākau a te Pākehā hei ora mō te tinana, ko tō ngākau ki ngā taonga a ō tīpuna Māori hei tikitiki mō tō māhunga." (Thrive in the days destined for you, your hand to the tools of the Pākehā to provide physical sustenance, your heart to the treasures of your ancestors to adorn your head). - Apirana Ngata Ngā Rangahautira is the Māori Law Students Society at Victoria University. Founded by Dr Moana Jackson and Sir Eddie Durie (the only two Māori students studying law at the time) in a broom cupboard in 1986, NR now has over 80 members, and numerous alumni. Many of our rōpū are aware of Tā Apirana Ngata's famous whakataukī, where he implores future generations of Māori to go forth with the tools of the Pākehā in their hand and the treasures of their tupuna in their heart. The hopeful nature of this whakataukī often sits uncomfortably with the reality that our tauira face on a daily basis. As Māori students, we all hold dear the treasure that is our whakapapa, within our hearts and minds. As a result, studying and using the tools of colonisation is often a challenge. We learn the ways of the courts who stole our whenua, the governments who silenced our reo and the politicians who repressed our culture. Confronting the problematic relationship between te ao Māori and te ao Pākehā in the law is one of Ngā Rangahautira's greatest challenges. Our solution to this challenge is to place emphasis on the latter part of Tā Apirana's whakataukī. We seek to provide an environment where our tauira can express their culture and be proud of their whakapapa, which in turn (we hope) makes them feel more comfortable and confident within law school. Some initiatives that we have developed to achieve these aims include tikanga workshops, noho marae and Ngā Kaiaronui, a sub-group which submits to Parliamentary Select Committees on Māori legal issues. Through this environment, we hope to become a cohort of lawyers who can use the tools of the Pākehā to fulfil the dreams of our ancestors and thus fulfil Tā Apirana’s challenge.
LET THIS SPACE SIT AS A REMINDER TO HAND IN YOUR ASSIGNMENTS AND COLUMNS ON TIME!
It’s really easy for me to slip into a cycle of flippancy when it comes to talking about mental health; it’s really easy for me to deflect talking about the hard stuff with humour. There’s nothing wrong with that, I don’t think. There is value in escapism. I do think, however, that it’s important not to get stuck in that cycle indefinitely. This week I’m going to attempt to cut the shit and speak sincerely. Apologies for any inconvenience caused. In 2014, my first year, a friend of mine was coediting Salient. He wrote an editorial for the mental health issue. It was, after a long time of feeling very isolated, the reason I finally went and got diagnosed. The editorial spoke candidly about struggling, and about being kind to yourself. It was a relief to see someone say it out loud. Seeing someone who I admired so much admit he was struggling made it seem like it was OK, actually, that I was struggling too. I don’t remember that time in a whole lot of detail. I do remember sitting in the overbridge at uni, reading the editorial, and crying. Then walking myself to Student Health. Talking candidly about mental health is hard, but as Cam and Duncan said in that issue, we need to talk about it. We need to say it out loud. I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression in October 2014. The diagnosis was a while in the making. In the years since, I’ve been to doctors and counsellors, I’ve come on and off meds. I’m still figuring it out. Right now, I’m doing OK. I’m pretty stressed, I’m worried about my friends, but I’m doing OK.
There’s a part of me that’s worried this OK-ness that I’ve been feeling for the past couple of months has an expiry date. There’s a part of me that’s worried I’m going to get overwhelmed again, that I’m going to sink back into the intensely dark place I was in this time last year. University is really tough for me. I expect a lot from myself. I often won’t attempt something if I don’t think I’ll excel in it; I’d rather not do something at all than deliver in mediocrity. I have an all-or-nothing mindset that results in periods of chronic stagnation with intermittent bursts of panic-induced activity. Human interaction is really tough for me. I tend to give a lot of myself to others. I feel incredible pressure to be “on” when I’m around people; I read into silences as some deficiency in my character. I haven’t quite figured out yet how to comfortably exist without the approval of others. It’s often easier to pretend I don’t care than to admit that actually, I care a lot, and that I won’t always be in control or live up to the high standards I set for myself. Cam and Duncan openly talking about their struggles was powerful, and I am forever grateful for the impact that their candour had, and continues to have, on my life. Struggling is OK; normal; valid. Let’s talk about our mental health, if only to find comfort in the fact that we aren’t alone. Success doesn’t always look like thriving; sometimes success is just surviving. I think it’s important to be reminded that the ostensibly simple act of surviving is admirable in and of itself. I’ll be back to complaining about stupid shit next issue, promise. Love you, xoxo 29
PGSA: Postgrad Informer
Vaccines – your BEST method of protection! Whether you are living in Halls or flatting with friends, young people sharing accommodation are at greater risk of infection. You might encounter bugs ranging from mild common ones such as cough and cold viruses, to more serious ones such as flu, pneumonia or meningitis. The good news is that you can protect yourself against many of them, so book an appointment with the nurses at Mauri Ora to discuss which vaccines might be suitable for you. - Routine childhood vaccines: most people born in NZ were fully vaccinated during childhood to a range of diseases including tetanus, hepatitis B, whooping cough, polio, mumps, measles and rubella. Most of these vaccinations will protect you for many years, but it is worth checking that you had all yours when you were younger – if you didn’t, I’d suggest having a conversation about which ones are important to have now. This will vary depending on your situation – e.g. hepatitis B can be important if you are sexually active, whereas tetanus/ polio might be more important if you are considering travelling overseas. For people born overseas, check what immunisations you had, and ask us to give you boosters or extra vaccines if required. Note that some charges may apply depending on your circumstances. - Flu vaccine: living in Halls is a big risk factor for catching flu. We offer free vaccination to all students from April. Vaccines will be available in the Hub, in halls, and on all campuses so keep an eye out for the Student Health team! - Meningitis: this is unfortunately not a free vaccine, but definitely worth considering (especially for 1st year students). Menactra costs $103, and gives good protection not only for your time in Halls, but also if you are considering travelling overseas during your time at Vic. - Gardasil: this amazing vaccine is free for all NZ residents, up to the age of 27. Others can choose to pay for it. It gives really good protection against HPV – the virus that causes not only genital warts, but also cancer of the penis and cervix. Sexually active or not, this is one I wouldn’t miss out on! Book a nurse appointment at Mauri Ora to organise your vaccines this term – and stay healthy!
Sometimes who you know is more important that what you know. A network of friends and mentors is truly valuable. Whether you are still studying as an undergrad, striving for research goals as a post-grad, or starting a career, your connections to other people will make your journey a much happier one. University can be a pressurized experience. It’s a period in our lives when our individual academic merits are formally recorded. Sometime we can become crushed by the weight of self-expectation. We all stumble at some point in our lives and need help to get back on our feet. At VUW we have many opportunities to build our support networks. Friendly tutors and tutorial groups make a huge difference to our learning experience. There are also many clubs and societies that are great places to meet like-minded people. As a biotechnology PhD student I have gravitated towards Chiasma Wgtn, the VUW Science Society, and the PGSA. Over time, the friends I made through these student organizations, have left university and become outstanding members of the local science industry. My social network now contributes to my professional network as well. The people you go through university with will become your contemporaries in the industry you are training to join. These friends and contacts are an incredibly valuable asset when you start your own career. Here in Aotearoa we are blessed with our few degrees of separation. If you reach out to one person, they can often connect you to someone who can help you on your way. For post-grads, it’s easy for us to become isolated in our established academic homes and avoid the surging throngs of undergrads seeking to belong. But it is the postgrads who most need to make connections, because we spend longer at university before we enter the workforce. So, who do want to be in your network? Putting yourself out there and reaching out is the hardest part, but rest assured, your bravery will be met with goodnatured Kiwi conversation.
From the Archives Max Nichol Students are always looking for a chance to suss a bit of extra coin wherever they can. Popular methods include maintaining gainful employment (low-risk, low-reward), cashing out course-related costs for “travel” (mediumrisk, medium-reward), and getting money from wealthy relatives (low-risk, high-reward). But for the real high rollers among us who are looking to make their fortune before they’ve even left uni, there’s always gambling. In 1964, Salient reported that Richard Smith, Chairman of the House Committee at Victoria University, informed the Executive Committee they needed to take action on the issue of gambling on campus. Smith had watched, horrified, as a group of freshers gambled at cards in the Common Room. He’d been unable to figure out the exact rules of their game, but alleged that one student had come out £100 lighter after a particularly high stakes round. That is a staggering amount of money to lose in a game of cards. For perspective, in today’s money that’s $4106.79. That could pay for: 977 flat whites at Vic Books; 10.6% of my student loan; the money I owe in fines to the draconian institution that is the VUW library, 68 times over, or one required course text. (I had to check my student loan balance for the first time in like a year to write this story. I do not recommend doing this). Fortunately, our unlucky student may have caught a break: “Publications Officer Tom March said that gamblers were not legally compelled to pay their debts and could not be sued for them. This should be publicised, he suggested in the hope it would help to curb gambling.” The issue of gambling on campus, which contravened Rule 9 of the Victoria University discipline regulations, continued however. In 1966, a reporter for Salient busted a card game again being played in the common room:
Salient April 1, 1966,
‘“You might as well admit it, you’re gambling aren’t you?” said a Salient reporter to this group of card players in the common room some days ago. They agreed that they were, and threw money (picture above) on the table which they said represented their stakes. These 1966 games don’t seem to have reached the dizzying heights of their 1964 predecessor. The highest amount in the pot was rumoured to be £10, and hands were usually played for about £2. Hardly Casino Royale. But it’s not an insignificant sum either, which brings me to the Public Service Announcement portion of the column: gambling is roundly a very bad idea, and you are statistically assured to lose money doing it. Please do not spend any money on a game of chance that you can’t afford to lose. Is this the kind of wholesome message that will keep you tuning into “From the Archives” for weeks to come? I sure hope so.
TV — American Vandal, Season 1 WHO KNEW ONE LONG DICK JOKE COULD BE SO SATISFYING?
Review by Conall Aird & George Bulleid
Coming onto Netflix in the later part of 2017, American Vandal proved to be a surprising success. The show is essentially a true-crime mockumentary, though it takes itself seriously enough for the viewer to buy into the format and story as something real. Two members of Hanover High School's AV club take it upon themselves to uncover the culprit and motives behind a crime that has shaken up the school: Who spray-painted dicks on 27 cars in the teacher’s parking lot? After the prime suspect of the crime, class clown and school oaf Dylan (Youtube’s Jimmy Tatro) is found guilty and expelled, the main documentarian Peter (Tyler Alvarez) becomes interested in exploring the crime, and Dylan’s potential innocence, to its fullest extent. The two release their investigation as a weekly web-series being aired in real time, which goes viral, affecting the nature of the investigation.
Serial. But instead of murder, we’re dealing with balls on a bonnet. Much like the crime, the investigation itself takes a different path, through the analysis of Snapchat videos from the weekend, the deconstruction of text messages, and interviews with the carefully characterised student and staff bodies. As ridiculous and outlandish the theories become, the show still feels grounded. The mockumentary’s high-level analysis and deadpan approach clicks with audiences who love seeing a crime unravel; you feel genuinely invested in what is a clearly a ridiculous crime. American Vandal triumphs because the show’s characters present themselves, and the juvenile crime at issue, as seriously as the true-crime documentaries that it’s satirising do. If all American Vandal aimed to do was mock the tropes of true-crime TV, the show may still be good but would in no way be a success. As audience members will realise, the series sets up a wider examination of themes involving censorship, journalistic integrity in the Internet age, and identity in high school life, which is enhanced by the real-time progression and evolution of the episodes.
Set in a realistic and relatable high school environment, Peter gathers information through social media and student gossip, to try discover who was behind the crime. There is an episode dedicated to unpacking the reliability of the crime’s key witness, after rumours surface that he received a hand job from the school’s most popular girl; another episode deconstructs an alibi that rests on an Instagram post.
American Vandal is so much more than just dicks. It’s a refreshing take on an arguably limp genre which will no doubt satisfy true-crime and comedy fans alike.
The show employs the same high level of detail we would expect from a genuinely serious true-crime series; think Making a Murderer or the 2014 podcast
Music — Alex Cameron in Wellington: Unexpected, Nonsensical, Groovy
ARTIST: ALEX CAMERON AND ROY WOODS OPENING ACT: JACK LADDER LATEST ALBUM: FORCED WITNESS VENUE: MEOW
Here’s the thing: the act shouldn’t make sense. Objectively, no one should like Alex Cameron. He plays the character of a sleaze. He looks like a deadbeat dad, with his slicked back hair, donning a wife beater under an unbuttoned half-sleeve orange shirt. To be completely honest, he looked like my ex. Yet, despite being innately unappealing to most audiences, the gig was ace. People of all ages showed up – there were hipster teens in Hawaiian shirts, normie young adults, middle aged divorced women, and couples of all ages. Every person in the crowd was having fun. Everybody was dancing to their own beat – there was no right, wrong, normal, or abnormal way to groove. Never have I seen a performer with so much charisma and positive energy. There were five musicians onstage. Alex Cameron was the lead. Roy Woods was the very silent and judgemental saxophonist (think substitute teacher who sets his chair in the middle of the class and says “I’ll wait,” in the most defeated and disappointed tone), an electric guitarist, who looked like a stereotypical math nerd; he wore square-rimmed glasses and a half-sleeve white checked shirt tucked into brown dad-pants. If every geek from Freaks and Geeks got together and created a middle-aged electric guitarist, he was it. Jack Ladder was the opener. If Fabio and Kevin Bacon got together to create a hybrid musician who was even more heartbroken and had even more luscious hair than the two, that would be Jack. When he was on stage, he was singing/crying into the mic, with a three-legged stool next to him on which sat a glass of red wine, his phone, and a notebook set on top of it. Like, that’s how much of an absurd 80s heartthrob he was. The final musician was a keyboardist named
Holiday Sidewinder. She was beautiful and powerful and so talented. She’s incomparable. I seriously think I’m in love. Despite the full stage, Cameron was playing off the audience’s energy. He embodied what seemed to be a perfected act of a full-energy performer. He gave Wellington 150% of his energy and we gave it all back to him. He talked about his album Forced Witness being an account of all sorts of characters, pointing fingers at issues like privilege and misogyny. The crowd favourite was 'Marlon Brando'. Everyone seemed to know the words and were chanting the lyrics back to him. I’ve never experienced such a euphonic performance. When the keyboardist and Cameron sang 'Stranger’s Kiss' together, the audience were more engaged than ever. The artists were singing to each other and, to them, no one else existed. She sounded beautiful and he brought his grooviest moves. The set included about 13 songs, and as soon as the act was over there were chants for an encore. When the musicians came back on, it was as if they never left. By this point of the show, everybody was sweaty. So sweaty that clothes were sticking to bodies. In such tight quarters, other people’s sweat merged with your own. Objectively, we should all have been annoyed. We should all have felt gross, but we weren’t. Everyone was grooving and nobody cared. The performance allowed for everyone to exist in the moment. It was the kind of gig where you just forgot to pull your phone out and send a snap to your friends. You forgot that there was a world beyond the venue. We all left knowing that we’d experienced something amazing, and we all left feeling beyond satisfied.
Review by Satvika Iyer 34
Music — Everything is Recorded VERYTHING IS RECORDED BY RICHARD RUSSELL
Everything is Recorded is the brainchild of Richard Russell, the owner of XL Recordings in the UK. Over the years, XL have produced massive records by the likes of FKA twigs, Gil Scott-Heron, The xx, Vampire Weekend, Radiohead, King Krule, and Adele’s 19, 21, and 25. Not a bad track record at all. Naturally, Russell has built an array of networks with some of the most talented indie musicians associated with his label, and Everything is Recorded finds a home for many of them. The list of contributors features man-of-the-moment Sampha, Syd, Kamasi Washington, Peter Gabriel, Ibeyi, Wiki, and Giggs – to name but a few. Sampha is the heart and soul of the record, as his vocals pop up on a third of the tracks here. Sonically, Everything is Recorded does fit the mould of Sampha’s Process, in that it channels Sampha’s stellar tenor to navigate quirky and idiosyncratic melody throughout these songs. In terms of a general sonic palette, Russell borrows
from many styles of music, with the use of dub style rhythms and old soul samples being the most notable running themes across the album. Promo single “Mountains of Gold” sees the dub style utilised in tandem with Ibeyi’s jarring vocals, Wiki’s abrasive verse, and a rip-snorting Kamasi Washington solo. Sampha’s call-and-response hook is really the glue here, as the track jumps from style to style before returning to the welcome familiarity of a crisp melody. The scope of this album is impressive. Russell taps into the individual ethos of each of his artists, and collates that into a cohesive project. Some tracks are certainly better than others – “Be My Friend” and the title track end the album with a brilliant one-two punch, which makes up for the slight lull in the middle third of the album. A great project, which serves as a glowing appraisal of Russell’s ability to get the best out of his collaborators.
Review by Josh Ellery 35
Book — Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman Review by Alex Feinson
Call Me By Your Name is currently breaking the hearts of movie-goers around the world, including mine, so I decided to extend my agony and heartache by reading the 2007 novel by Egyptian author André Aciman that the film is based on. The world of Call Me By Your Name exists within a pocket of ambiguous time and space, as the entire plot takes place within a six week period in summer at some point in the 1980s and in an unknown town in Italy. 17 year old Elio is the protagonist, and the novel follows his journey of self discovery that is full of obsession, lust, love, and heartache over Oliver, the 24 year old graduate student who stays with Elio’s family during this timeless summer. The highlight of the novel is the setting constructed around Elio and Oliver. The Italian summer seems like an idyllic dream, and Aciman constructs a rich and beautiful vision of a rural life in Italy. From small piazzas, to Rome’s cathedrals, to the coffee shops and the secret riverbed hideaways, the world within the novel feels expansive, vibrant, and alive. At the heart of Call Me By Your Name is the emotional connection between the two characters, as the majority of the narrative is dominated, and progresses, through Elio’s bouts of intense feelings of lust, love, hatred, anxiety, denial, and sadness over Oliver. However, there is arguably too many emotions. The novel follows an endless repetitive cycle of Elio expressing his feelings, then his interpretation of Oliver’s feelings, then a re-interpretation of both of their feelings and on and on and on. This feature makes the novel quite difficult to read, and my annoyance with it did not abate as I read through it. This same feature also makes Elio and Oliver difficult characters to like. While you want them to get
together, their insistent emotional anxiety and drama around each other becomes tedious after a while. By the end of section one, it’s like… “come on lads, stop brooding and just bloody get on with it…”. But when they finally do get on with it, it is magical. But then it ends, and the world crumbles, and you have to take a time out to recover. Call Me By Your Name is an emotional rollercoaster, and I quite enjoyed reading it, but I doubt I will want to read it again any time soon. It is also with a heavy heart that I have to say that the film is better than the book. While both the novel and film equally capture the picturesque beauty of Italy and the intensity of the relationship between Elio and Oliver, the film, (because of the format) is able to remove the repetitive narrative style that dominates the novel, making the characters far more likeable and their story more compelling and emotional. My expectations were perhaps too high for the book because I loved the film so much, so it fell short and I was disappointed. I recommend reading the book first if you have not seen the film yet, because your expectations will be low to begin with and then blown away by the film. You also get to look at Armie Hammer and Timotheé Chalamet for two hours as a bonus, and I do not know anyone in their right mind who would complain about that. And never fear, Aciman and director Luca Guadagnino are working on one (and possibly two) sequels together, so there is more heartache and sadness to come. Oh and by the way, in the copy of the film tiein version that you can get from BookDepository for $12, the peach scene is on page 146.
Podcast — Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel Review by Hannah Patterson
Talking about relationships, particularly the romantic kind, is frequently understood to be a “feminine” activity; in other words, something only women do. And arguably because of this labelling as “feminine”, the discussion of emotions and relationships is often framed as unimportant or self-indulgent. Esther Perel’s podcast Where Should We Begin is dedicated to breaking down this misconception and creating a non-judgemental space for emotions and relationships to be discussed.
and as partners, “The Addict” explores how addiction has affected a relationship over 40 years. Although the content of each episode varies greatly, I am always able to find something to relate to. Listeners are welcomed into the most private sphere of people’s lives, and by the end of the each session it’s hard not to feel a bond with the participants.
Perel is a renowned psychotherapist who has written several novels on love, relationships and sexuality. However, her work extends far beyond this; she presents talks, creates informative videos, works as a therapist, and in 2017 launched her podcast with Audible. Each episode of Where Should We Begin? is a recorded couples therapy session conducted by Perel with a different anonymous couple each time. The recording of the session is mixed in with voice-over commentary by Perel which offers further insight into the workings of her mind as a therapist.
On her website Perel explains that through her work she seeks to “take relationship advice out of the exclusive female market” and encourage people to “question themselves, to speak the unspoken, and to be unafraid to challenge sexual and emotional correctness”. This is the power of Where Should We Begin?. It is unafraid of exploring the taboo, the ugly, and the complex facets of relationships. There is something refreshingly brave about hearing people speak on difficult matters so honestly and publicly. We are reminded that our emotions do matter, do need to be discussed, and that there is no shame in doing so. To quote Perel: “The quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives”.
The couples who feature have (on the surface) vastly different experiences and difficulties. “Trauma Doesn’t Like To Be Touched” is about creating safe spaces in a relationship while acknowledging past trauma, “Motherless Women” dissects the relationship of two women who struggle to balance their roles as mothers
Where Should We Begin? really does make you feel all the feels. Joy, sadness, anger, humour, all facets of human emotion are covered. It can be an intense podcast to listen to, but it has allowed me to feel a sense of unity with others that surpasses age, race, gender, sexuality, and culture. And that, is a powerful, wonderful thing.
Film — Women in Film (For Women’s History Month) TW: SEXUAL ASSAULT
The Old: Into the Forest (2015) The saying, “this is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but a whimper,” seems especially relevant in regards to this film. Set just after the destruction of the world’s power grid, Into the Forest takes us to the end of the world through the eyes of two women. Nell and Eva are two sisters stranded in the middle of a forest when the power fails. Once their father gets killed in an accident, they have to make it on their own. Into the Forest is not your “standard” end-of-theworld film. There are no explosions and very little
violence. Most of it is just pure survival. It’s a more indie, wankier version of the apocalypses we know and love. While parts of this film are gruesome (please refer to the warning above), it depicts femininity honestly and without prejudice. It is rare to see women portrayed on screen grossly, without makeup, or sans a veneer. Into the Forest gives us a reality of an apocalypse, without all of the flashy parts. - Emma Maguire
The New: Red Sparrow (2017) Whatever you do, don’t go into Red Sparrow pumped for another Atomic Blonde. The premise of the unstoppable female spy is tempting feminist bait. As a woman and feminist, difficult, sickening, disturbing, and ultimately desensitizing, are the words I would use to describe Red Sparrow. Dominika, Jennifer Lawrence’s character, begins as and remains literally a sexual object, who is emotionally, physically, and sexually abused by men (including her uncle). She is controlled through her body and told to use her sexuality as a weapon. She perpetuates the idea that a woman gains power only when she uses her sexuality to manipulate men. It does not appear that she is given any field training in combat or self defense. She is tortured because she is not believed. Throughout the film she changes her appearance to appeal to whoever she needs to, because that is what she has been taught. You gals out there at this point might be thinking, “hang on! This all sounds just like life,” and you’d be right. In a twisted and dramatised way this film shows the plethora of shit that women have dealt with, and continue to deal with, in everyday life. It also made
me think that Jennifer Lawrence was smart to take on the role. Dominika’s experience reflects not only the experience of women, but also Lawrence’s own experience in Hollywood. We are all aware of the private photos leaked of Lawrence, that as a young actress she was pushed into a naked line up for a role, and that she has been asked to lose weight for roles many a time. Lawrence has been vocal about how she was empowered by the nude scenes in Red Sparrow after the photos incident. This was the redeeming quality of the film, it was a taking back for Jennifer Lawrence, which is fantastic. As a film, however, it wasn’t enough to justify the level of onscreen violence. Then the credits came, and it all made sense. Male directors, writers, and producers have made great stuff, but they aren’t the ones who should be telling the stories of women’s perpetual sexual (or other) abuse. In the heat of the #metoo and #timesup movements, this film just came out a bit tone-deaf, and the marketing is even worse; being called a “darkly seductive spy thriller” by 20th Century Fox’s Facebook marketing team. - Meg Doughty 38
Food — Kampong Rising Review by Shariff Burke
On Boxing Day last year, I took a walk around the city. Counting the number of brandy snaps I had eaten the day before, I realised that this number strangely correlated with the number of Malaysian restaurants I had just strolled past. It must have been 18, or maybe 19. Nevertheless, it was with great intrigue that I stumbled across the 20th Malaysian restaurant that evening. Kampong, which means “village” in Malay, is the newest offering by the Grandaddy of Malaysian cuisine in Wellington, Chef Raja Vellasamy. Raj, as he is known to his longtime fans, opened Wellington’s first bonafide Malaysian restaurant, the then Satay Malaysia way back in 1990. Generations of followers dutifully return once they find out where this jack-in-a-box chef emerges next. Before we get into Kampong, it's worth explaining Malaysian cuisine to the apathetic diner. The multicultural nature of Malaysia is extended to its cuisine. Typically, for example, if you were to enter a Malaysian eatery run by ethnic Chinese Malaysians, then the emphasis of that restaurant would be of food historically linked to the Chinese, such as a plate of char keow teow or even laksa. On other occasions, Malaysian restaurants run by ethnic Indians would showcase fresh roti and deeply spiced curries, another dimension of Malaysian cuisine. Not obvious to many is the lacuna of Malaysian restaurants run by ethnic Malays (I know of one in Taihape), the largest of the three main ethnic groups. Over here you get sweet satays, rendangs, rich lemongrass and galangal infused coconut curries, and lots and lots of chillies, think Indonesian or Southern Thai. In Wellington, most restaurants' attempts at covering all three distinct ethnic bases often don’t work. An exception to this would be the global behemoth in the CBD known as Paparich, which covers all ethnic canons to a notable degree. Kampong is haphazardly located in a dim, dingy, forgotten Yum Cha restaurant with all its past fixtures still intact. Large lanterns with frills drape off the ceiling. The furniture is oddly shaped, and I have a sneaky suspicion that a well-lit fish tank with large goldfish and coral wallpaper used to be the centerpiece of this dining area… hmm, maybe that aquarium should’ve been retained.
Raj’s best dishes are of the Indian variety (colloquially referred to as mamak). However, the rendang here is noteworthy; it’s a Malay dish that CNN ranks as the best tasting dish in the world, originating from the travelling Buffalo people of West Sumatra. Raj has maintained the integrity of this slow-cooked meat dish consisting of, among other things, fresh turmeric, galangal, ginger, chillies, and desiccated coconut. While his version is slightly more wet than you would typically expect, it is only a tiny compromise on texture to cater to a Kiwi palate. Raj has made a reputation for himself through his rotis, flipping them fresh upon order. Flakey on the outside and moist on the inside; my personal criteria for roti excellence. However what gets me most excited about this place is that Raj is joined in the kitchen by Chef Silas. Silas is the person responsible for one of the Wellington’s cosiest and coolest BYO joints, Rasa. This dosa maestro of over twenty years offers his signature dosas (south Indian crepes) here too. Put together, these two make a Malaysian foodies’ dream team. I’ve heard that other signature dishes here include the classic nasi lemak, a fiery chicken sambal, and the heady goat curry. Kampong serves Malaysian staples decently too, like mee goreng. The inclusion of butter chicken to the menu does induce consternation, but perhaps it could be a pragmatic attempt at catering to children. While there are vegetarian dishes on the menu, such as the dhal (lentil curry) and murtabak, a lot more effort could be made by the dynamic duo to cater to this burgeoning segment of Wellington diners. May I suggest items like a coconut-creamy jackfruit curry, which, more than being a hipster fetish, is a staple dish among villages in Malaysia and the region at large. Since its Boxing day launch, it feels like Kampong needs more time to settle before it’s ready to take full flight. I recommend lunch time trips to Kampong, as it’s more wallet-friendly yet still packs a punch. In the meantime, I am ready to take the awkward décor and service in my stride, push brandy snaps aside, and buckle up for the ride. Kampong - 33 Arthur St, Te Aro
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Art — The Thirteen Beautiful Films of Manifesto Review by Jane Wallace
Cate Blanchett reads out thirteen different text assemblages, combining a mass of artistic manifestos, rearranged by Julian Rosefeldt for his project Manifesto. These text assemblages are every callous or triumphant sentiment that art has spat out in the last century. This project is split over thirteen different screens, hovering panels in the Auckland Art Gallery, all lasting for around ten minutes. The performances are layered over each other, so Blanchett is omnipresent. There is a moment in each loop where they all synchronise, and multiple versions of her jolt from their manifesto, and then continue in some sort of transcendental chant. It is hyperreal, but immaculate, and Blanchett, under Rosefeldt’s direction, melds into thirteen equally flawless characters to personify the work she performs. Each persona she takes on is an absolute archetype. These manifestos were created when the ideas that they espouse were of the fringes, not the mainstream. Thus, to collapse them into formulaic characters is the antithesis of their original conception. When Blanchett becomes the perfect punk—slurring, snarling, thick eyeliner—she is a paradox. The outsider cannot be made into a stereotype. They have a dissonant experience of life, where their identity does not slot easily amongst a normative social cast, or between codified social signs. Other roles that Blanchett takes on are also from the margins, like the garbage plant worker, or of characters who take on behaviours of the outskirts; the teacher, the mother. To categorise those who are not often represented in this reductive way also dismantles the relationship of the original texts with their authors, readers, or audiences. In attempting to fabricate this intrinsic relationship, it is instead hollowed out. The performances that Blanchett gives become a chimera, entirely a real thing, until they are not. Rosefeldt notes that the ambition of every
manifesto to triumph over the future—to proclaim what the future will, or should become—is not a forwardlooking exercise at all. The texts that have been compiled in Manifesto were mostly written when their authors were relatively young (Manuel Maples Arce was 21 when he wrote A Strident Prescription, Andre Breton was 28 for the first Surrealist Manifesto), and this is affirmed in the language used. Their radicalness is about enacting in the present a desire for revolution in the future, rather than hosting the revolution. The eccentricity of Tristan Tzara’s Dada Manifesto is a real-time agitation, where time is made to seem like it only exists up until the last word that is said. This potential is what is significant in these manifestos’ original publications; a charge, possibility. There is an expiration to this potential though. There is an absence of consideration of what a contemporary manifesto looks like, and how principles of architecture, science, art, and social relations have shifted. Amy Howden Chapman performed Architecture and Ideology: The Last of the Glass at the Adam Art Gallery last year. Hers is an essay that is relevant here and now, in New Zealand and with our present architectural concerns around disaster resilience and modern Antipodean design. Architecture and Ideology is an example that could have sat alongside Rosefeldt’s Manifesto, to offer a perspective that is more specific to the time and place that the exhibition is positioned in, and to reinvigorate the concept of the manifesto. The loss of potential energy in Rosefeldt and Blanchett’s collaboration in favour of revisiting the past is not necessarily a criticism. It is an interesting chronicle on display, and these are seminal texts, but it is a transplant exhibition that has dimmed over its geographic and social transmission. Manifesto is currently showing at the Auckland Art Gallery for a charge, or you can watch the clips for free on Julian Rosefeldt’s website.
Piano for a Bird No matter which way they turn it, the grand piano won't fit through the door frame. Clearly there's nothing for one to do now but give it away. This is what I have supposed, as I come sidling up to the curb like a widow in a jewelry store, and run my fingers across the glass of the chipped ivory and attic dust mahogany, before pulling up the bench and beginning to tap away softly at each key. There is a small problem though. I cannot play anything without each note reminding me of a different memory I never had
the chance to forgetâ€”you pecking your poems out on a keyboard in a soulless, sterile bookstore, dreaming up disasters for children
to get stuck inside of. It's not unlike you, rowing home in a lifeboat every night with ink-dirtied hands, and repairing silently up the stairs
to wash it all off before anyone can see. Did I see it? Or was it imagined,
Berlioz second movement beginning to take shape over the creak of the wind blowing against the hanging fire escape,
kids somewhere inside try to solve big jigsaw puzzles titled THE MYSTERIES OF THE WORLD and all of its different punishments and why they all seem to appear
like day to day life, the one that was lived without resolution, where you were stuck at a piano bench, washing your hands until they were clean. - Taylor Bell
submit poems to firstname.lastname@example.org
VUWSA IGM 2018 Wednesday 21 March, 2018 from 12pm The Hub @ Kelburn Including the by-election for VUWSA Education Officer
Aries: turn to pg 6 for a surprise
Taurus: your virginity is a gift
Gemini: I know what you did, Tim.
Cancer: watch out for falling anvils
Leo: your neighbours can see more than you think they can
Virgo: this was a triumph
Libra: for a good time call 0800 83 83 83
Scorpio: you're adopted
Spaghettarius: your shadow is not your friend
Capricorn: as you stare into the mirror, the mirror stares into you
Aquarius: go for a run, slowpoke
Pisces: bromine is a liquid at room temperature. Are you?
Larrikins & Horoscope by Anton Huggard, Triggerfin by Gus Mitchell, Soduku & Crossword by Nathan Hotter
What do you call a girl with her leg stuck in a fence? - Courtney Dad Joke of the Week "Narrowing it down to just one Dad joke was so hard because my dad is a living meme and he sends me jokes when I am sad... love that dude <3" - Dawn Mills Send us your worst Dad jokes to email@example.com and be in to win a double pass to the Raw Comedy Festival!
ACROSS 9 10 11 13 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
DOWN 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
_____ was the first animal in orbit Our solar system is in the _____ arm The Galilean Moons are names after Neptune’s largest moon Rocket Lab’s CEO Pluto and _____ are in an eternal wants The _____ was the rocket that took humans to the moon Mars’ largest volcano Apollo 11 landed in the sea of _____ Every 75 years _____ comet will burn bright in the sky The first woman to orbit the Earth
The last man to walk on the moon The first man to orbit the Earth The first space shuttle to launch The Milky Way is orbited by the Large and Small _____ The second closest star to the Earth Third planet for the sun The largest moon in the solar system “…one gaint leap for Mankind. And the - the surface is _____ and powdery.” 12 The most volcanically active body in our solar system 14 Elon Mysk Tesla _____ is heading past mars
The People to Blame
Editor Louise Lin Designer/Illustrator Ruby Ash New Editor Sasha Beattie Sub Editor Sally Harper Distributor Tejas Kalidas Chief News Reporter Angus Shaw Feature Writers Cavaan Wild Kii Small Rebecca Zhong Daniel Smith Louise Lin Section Editors Conall Aird & George Bulleid (TV) Satvika Iyer (Music) Josh Ellery (Music) Alex Feinson (Books) Hannah Patterson (Podcast) Emma Maguire & Meg Doughty (Film) Jane Wallace (Arts) Tom Hall (Food) Taylor Bell (Poem)
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Published on Mar 11, 2018