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Feb 2014

tog atus x

state election + o-week + asylum seekers + source co-op + uni culture


Published by the State Council on behalf of the Tasmania University Union Inc. (hf. “the publishers”). The opinions expressed herein are not necessarily those of Togatus staff or the publishers. The copyright in each piece of work remains with the contributor; however, the publishers reserve the right to reproduce material on the Togatus website ( The copyright in this magazine remains with the publishers. Editor: Tabitha Fletcher Deputy Print Editor: Olivia Congdon Deputy Web Editor: Stephanie Eslake Design: Jess Curtis, Mahalee Smart Contributors: Debbie Baird-Bower, Mark Buckland, Alice Camm, Liam Carswell, Maddie Charles, Essie Charlotte, Emily Dunn, Isaac Foster, Ruby Grant, Jessica Hancock, Colin Hargreaves, Alexandra Humphries, Holly Monery, Vino Rajandran, Christian Street,Topher Webster, Laura Wilkinson, Milly Yencken. Contributor illustrations by Alice Camm. Advertising: Please contact Togatus PO Box 5055 Sandy Bay, Tas 7006 Follow us: Twitter: @TogatusMagazine Facebook: Togatus welcomes all your contributions. Please email your work or ideas to It is understood that any contributions sent to Togatus may be used for publication in either the magazine or the website, and that the final decision on whether to publish resides with the editor and the publishers. The editor reserves the right to make changes to submitted material as required. Togatus is published monthly. March edition deadline (contributors): 28 Feb Front cover art by Milly Yencken. These and all subsequent illustrations produced and owned by the artist. Inspired by all the awkward quirks in day to day life, Milly is studying a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the School of Art, Hunter Street. See more of her work through her ‘Barcoded’ Facebook page, or at: Rhinocerous Beatle Illustration by Laura Wilkinson: Instgram 7AURA_


CONTENTS NUS Report / 5 State Election / 9 Source Wholefoods / 15 White Water Rafters / 18 Wham Bam Superman / 19 The Commute / 21 At War with the Weakest / 22 Now That Your’e A Grown Up / 25 How To Survive Your PHD / 27 In Blue Eyes / 29


FROM THE EDITOR Dear reader, contributor, casual observer,

Applications for the Togatus team are ongoing. We’re looking for people to do marketing and

Meet your all new Togatus - touted as the ‘premier publication for students’ at the old Uni of Tas. And it actually could be.

advertising, sub-editing, social media and, of course, writers. This a place of expression, discussion, dissent


and support. Together we can band together

Togatus is only as good as the sum of its

for a stronger student community, and

parts.There are many reasons to participate

promotestudent work and achievements.

in student media:

Email us at


It’s as close as we will get to a free press


It’s an archived historical record of how we really felt when the shit went down


It looks good on your resume -

extracurriculars? Check!


Tabitha Fletcher


Stephanie Eslake


Olivia Congdon

Join our contributors group: We can’t wait to hear from you! TLDR: You have a voice – we have a microphone.


A few things are changing. Togatus is going monthly, so we can be more in step with student life. The magazine’s content will be more reflective of regular news, which is covered on our website. More to add to something we’ve covered? Tell us with a good old letter to the editor. WE WORK FOR YOU We’re here to help you express your ideas and experiences. If you’ve never written for a publication, we’ll help you. We can offer you advice, a place to work, a phone to use. Even a computer if you’re having a computer crisis. Not sure what you want to write about? No problem! Get in touch and tell us a bit about yourself; we’ll work out an interesting assignment. AND YOU’RE ALL INVITED

Togatus: a civilian of Roman society. Might even wear a toga. That’s you: an

Come visit the Togatus office. Meet other

educated, democratic voice in the otherwise

contributors. Start conversations. Argue.

cavernous mediasphere of today.

Debate. Work together. Grow your ideas.



Isaac Foster


It’s my pleasure to welcome everyone newly

historically marginalised and oppressed identities.

Australians of ‘low socio-economic status’ (SES)

joining us at the University of Tasmania,

Liam Carswell is your State Branch President,

participating in Higher Education to 20 per cent

on behalf of the Tasmania University Union

and also a contributor to this first issue of

by 2020. It means that students with lower ATAR

(TUU), your Student Union.

Togatus for 2014.

scores, or who haven’t had access to the privilege

If you’ve never heard of us before, a Student

This year there are some hot issues at UTAS that

Union is an independent organisation led

you’ll hear about if you read Togatus: new car

by students, providing a range of services

parking fees on campuses, major building works

and support.

affecting Business students, an overhaul of the

We’re here for your university life: our elected Student Reps run activities, events and campaigns; they include an Education Officer, Activities Officer, Women’s Officer, Queer Officer,

student union, a rebranding of the university,

of a secure pathway through High School and College, can still have access to a university education. A review into the system by Federal Education Minister Christopher Pyne has already been commissioned.

growing class sizes, quality for students studying

The percentage of Tasmanian students

on regional campuses (including two in Sydney!),

continuing into University after finishing

and much more.

college is the lowest in country; even lower than the Northern Territory, a state 27 times

International Students Officer, Environment

There are also huge issues affecting students

Officer, and more. The Union funds all sporting

nation-wide. All of the student union’s services

clubs, societies and collectives (Women’s,

are currently funded through a Student Services

Queer, and Enviro) across UTAS’ campuses.

Fee (SSAF), the revenue of which is negotiated

We provide free Financial Counselling, and our

between university and its many stakeholders,

Student Advocates can meet with you to provide

including the student union. The Liberal Party

information on a range of issues, from mental

is historically opposed to Student Services fees,

This year the TUU will be fighting to ensure

and physical health to disputes, pregnancy and

and will likely seek to repeal SSAF, either this

that our services continue to grow and be

emergencies.We provide small emergency loans,

year or at some point before the end of their term.

available to students of all backgrounds

an emergency food-bank, and once-off payments through the UTAS Safety Net Grant Scheme. We also provide independent representation and advocacy, a university requirement under the Higher Education Support Act 2003. This means that if you are ever accused of Academic Misconduct, cheating or any other misdemeanors within the university, you’ll get to talk to our Student Advocates, and have a student representative present in your hearings. If you get as far as an academic appeal, that will be me!

All of the services I just wrote about are in danger

our size. Disadvantage in access to tertiary education for rural and remote, (dis)abled, Indigenous and low Tasmanians is a threat to the future of our entire state, not just to the quality of life of those affected.

and identities.

this year, including your student newspaper. When the Howard government abolished student union fees in 2006, universities around the country lost $170 million dollars of annual revenue previously used to provide non-academic services. Togatus disappeared, societies died, and the Union lost the majority of its staff. Following the introduction of SSAF in 2012 we have seen a bloom in campus culture and union services –

JOIN US? Meeting dates for our Student Representatives Councils (SRCs) and Collectives are updated through our facebook page and on our website ( All students are welcome to attend; come and meet your student representatives, or keep an eye out for them at any of our upcoming events. We’re looking forward to meeting you.

ask any lecturer around long enough to see us at

The TUU’s offices are dedicated student spaces. Visit

We also fund and provide Togatus!

our best, as well as our worst. We face a similar

at Level 2 of the Union Building (above the Refectory)

The union also works closely with the National

threat now, and we’ll fight hard to make sure that

in Hobart, on Queen Elizabeth Walk on the Newnham

Union of Students to run campaigns and

students continue to have access to the campus

Campus, or on D Block on the Burnie campus. We

research affecting students in Tasmania, as well as

life they deserve.

provide parenting rooms in both Newnham and Sandy

nationally. This includes everything from cuts to the Higher Education Sector, to campaigning for increased activism and awareness around issues affecting Women, Queer students, Indigenous students, (dis)abled students, and other

Another threat we face is an attack on the “demand-driven system,” introduced in 2009. In English, this was the removal of caps on Commonwealth-supported undergraduate places, a policy intended to increase the number of


Bay, and in Hobart we have dedicated spaces for Women and Queer-identifying students.

FROM THE NUS STATE PRESIDENT... Welcome to 2014 and a massive year of student activism from the National Union of Students (NUS). If you weren’t already aware, NUS is the peak body organisation that represents all university students at the federal level. NUS conducts national campaigns on issues such as your education, student welfare, the environment, and autonomously represents women, queer-identifying people, people with disabilities, and international, ethno-cultural Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. As the Branch President for NUS in Tasmania, it is my job to ensure NUS’ campaigns and activities are working in the state. Coming off a successful year of activism in 2013, NUS is preparing to fight even harder for students in 2014. Already we know that the new Liberal Government plans to cut billions of dollars from higher education. This includes converting start-up scholarships – the payment you get from Centrelink at the start of each semester – to loans and cutting money directly from university funding. Cuts to university funding hurt small and regional campuses like UTAS the most. It will mean bigger class sizes, less subject choice and a reduction in student services. In addition to this, newer plans for higher education from the Liberal government include potentially privatising HECS debt and repealing the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) – which is used to fund events like O-Week and publications like the one you’re reading.

“More than ever, it is important students let their government know that they won’t accept attacks to higher education and their student experience.” More than ever, it is important students let their government know that they won’t accept attacks to higher education and their student experience. 2014 is already shaping up to be a critical year for fighting back against Tony Abbott and Christopher Pyne’s plans for higher education. In partnership with the Tasmania University Union (TUU), NUS will be working hard to make this happen. Last year we saw activism make a long overdue return to student life at UTAS. In addition to making sure you enjoy your university experience with social events, it is vitally important that your student union keeps up the fight to ensure you have the best possible education. Working with the TUU, NUS will make sure this happens. The first major NUS event planned for 2014 is a national day of action on March 26. Events will be held across the state and students will have the opportunity to speak out against cuts. Make sure you keep in touch with the TUU and NUS to find out more details about the event and let Abbott and Pyne know you won’t accepts cuts to your education. x

Liam Carswell










2-6pm, TUU Carpark

3-6pm, Ref Steps







8-10am, Ref Steps 12-2pm, Ref Steps & The Con 11am-2pm, Activities Centre

TUU MARKET DAY 4-9pm, Central Mall

10am-12pm, Ref Steps 12-2pm, Arts School 7-10pm, Uni Bar


7pm-1am, Uni Bar & Outside

Orientation. This is where it begins: O-Week is designed to help you new kids find your feet on campus, and to ease you veterans back in. As such, we have several liquid-fuelled events ready for you. Go to them. From Barrel 101 to the closing concert, O-Week is student central. If you need reasons not to download all your lectures, you’ll meet them there. Join your school’s society, then join all the others. You won’t be able to avoid meeting cool people. This first week is where the mark you will leave on the uni begins, be it figurative or physical. Photo: Campbel Nicol

Sure, uni could be just like school or one of those ‘job’ things I’ve heard so much about, but hey, if you close your eyes and wish really hard, maybe, like Pinocchio, you’ll become enough of a real boy (or girl) that you become part of the reason those other kids go to uni. It’s up to you whether the mark you leave is a stain or an impression. O-Week. It’s ground zero for the rest of your academic life.

Topher Webster – Activities Officer – TUU SRC (south)



WARNING POLITICS AHEAD! Due to the upcoming state election, this is of course, our election edition. We know these aren’t all the potential overlords political hopefuls with their hand up to represent us. There’s a whole caboodle. Some are more questionable than others. You’ll notice the Palmer United Party, for example, isn’t represented here. Their candidates, while fantastic tabloid fodder, aren’t in need of more publicity... A national Palmer family Christmas card was just a step too far, Clive. It was hard to get anyone to write about this, to be honest. If we know you – and we don’t, we’d say… “most people seem really disengaged and tuned out to the whole pageant.” “Which election is it? I haven’t really been keeping track” - Guy “Wait, is it a state election?” - Girl “Who’s gonna win?” - Someone else “……………………….” - People on Facebook But your vote does mean something; it does affect your life, - from better public transport to get you to Uni, to better opportunities for your future in the state. So please, do yourself a favour and look into it further… If you abstain from voting, at least have some informed reasoning behind it.


R E P P I N G T H E L I B E R A L PA RT Y Tasmania is a great place to live and work. The unfortunate fact for many of us is that when we graduate, finding work in the state will be harder than it has been for a long time. For some, the only option will be to leave in order to find work on the mainland. But it shouldn’t be this way and it doesn’t have to be this way. x

Christian Street

The Tasmanian Liberals have a very clear vision for young people heading into the March 15 poll. They will put at the centre of their vision jobs and working towards lowering the unemployment rate from day one. We understand that the only way to do this is to rebuild business confidence so that they begin employing people again. When I graduate at the end of this year, the best thing that a new Tasmanian Government could do for me as a young person is make sure that the settings and support for business are right so that they want to employ me. A lot of factors go in to making that happen and on their own none of them are particularly sexy. Things like restoring international shipping services to access the Asian market, investing additional money in tourism marketing and disaggregating government contracts

“They will put at the centre of their vision jobs and working towards lowering the unemployment rate from day one.”

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so that smaller businesses get a slice of government work, all help to get Tasmania moving again. Again, not particularly sexy, but hopefully it will mean that Tasmanian employers see the wheels moving again and want to employ young people before they leave Tasmania. That’s the big pitch. A Will Hodgman led Liberal Government wants to keep young people here and is prepared to do what it takes to get Tasmania working again. On a philosophical level, all Liberals believe that government should get out of the way of business and investment and nurture free enterprise. That is why we’re so keen to see people employed in the private sector. At their heart Liberals believe in the fundamental rights of the individual to choose their own destiny and not be interfered with by government. Liberals believe in equality of opportunity and this is why the Tasmanian Liberals commitment to education particularly in rural and regional areas and to the basics of literacy and numeracy are so important. Labor and the Greens have done nothing to help the education system in Tasmania

“At their heart Liberals believe in the fundamental rights of the individual to choose their own destiny and not be interfered with by government.” after cutting teacher numbers and funding, a concerted effort is required to make sure that Tasmanian students don’t fall further behind. The Liberals have a plan to increase investment in the Tasmanian education system for the benefit of all students. Living in a state with entrenched disadvantage is not easy for a lot of Tasmanians and the community sector is under a lot of pressure. The Liberals have promised additional funding to the community sector to supplement the indexation of their funding that has been cut under the Labor-Green Government. Additionally, investment in public health will increase under a Liberal Government with a serious investment in reducing elective surgery waiting lists and employing more nurses and front line healthcare staff.

These are just some of the policies that the Tasmanian Liberals are taking to the March 15 poll, along with 25 committed and hard working candidates. Ultimately, the question that must be asked when you vote on March 15 is this: with Tasmania’s unemployment rate the highest in the country, when only 43 percent of Tasmanian students finish Year 12 and when the government is cutting money out of frontline services, are the Labor Party and the Greens taking Tasmania in a direction that makes you want to stay? The only way to give Tasmania a better future is to vote Liberal.




Maddi Charles

We are reaching the tipping point where more and more people are realising that the economy of the future cannot be built on a 'dig it up, chop it down and cut it up' mentality because, simply, it is not sustainable. It is widely stated by prominent leaders such as Barrack Obama that the economy of the future is knowledge-based and one that is sustained by renewable technology. Yet when the car industries are struggling with competitive overseas market prices the old parties are failing to invest in technologies which will be competitive in the global market and instead provide jobs toindustries which may become redundant. And, instead of investing in tertiary education the old parties would rather stand by a mining tax, drafted in conjunction with the industry. Economics aside, when times are tough the old parties are unconscionably violating human rights of refugees (which is far more costly than humane alternatives) and are now threatening to impose a $6 contribution on GP visits while simultaneously proposing $200 to people newly engaged for relationship counselling. If you're reading this and thinking the people who are elected are dickheads and you are simultaneously justifying why you hate politics, quite simply, I don't blame you.

“If you’re reading this and thinking the people who are elected are dickheads and you are simultaneously justifying why you hate politics, quite simply, I don’t blame you.”


The Greens emerged in the 1970s when strong scientific recognition emerged that the Earth was not infinite in its capacity to give up resources or absorb waste. From this philosophy the Greens came to the understanding that in order to sustain our society we need to protect our environment rather than live to serve an economy, and in fact, the Greens believe that we should live in a society and not an economy. We should use economic tools to better guarantee a sustainable relationship between nature and people. Accordingly, the economy must be equitable, serve the needs of everyone and provide the best chance to meet the challenges of the future. Thus the Greens are against tax cuts for the rich and want to foster high-skill green jobs and zero carbon industries. Accordingly the implementation of the price on pollution is evidence of an attempt to restructure the economy by rewarding productive activity that avoids pollution, degradation of natural resources and simultaneously investing in renewable energy; technology that is more sustainable than a fossil-fuel based economy. Additionally the Greens have scrutinised cuts to single parent allowances, reduction of investments to tertiary education, ineffective mining taxes, and tax concessions to environmentally harmful industries.

The difference between the Greens party and the old parties is that the Greens economic policy is based on the pragmatic needs of a society rather than economic philosophies that cannot not be sustained. Furthermore parties that pride themselves on said philosophies fail to effectively apply them to all policies, causing contradiction and confusion for what they stand for. For example, Liberal philosophy is based on 'free market' ideals* however this is contradictory to many key policies. For example, the Liberals are attempting to throw out a market-based solution to climate change in favour of big subsidies to polluters. The Financial Review has been critical of the Liberals stance against various Gillard initiatives, one of which encourages households to install electricity meters that will allow prices to vary between peak and off-peak times. This is technology widely applied across Europe, and the US Financial Review labelled Greg Hunt's response to Gillard's electricity reforms as leaping into the 'Luddite fringe' and playing politics against a reform which was 'classic free market policy based on the idea of user-pays, which the Liberal Party was created to defend.'Â

on our environment and our most vulnerable. At the core of the Greens economic policy is once again the most simple logic; we live in a society and not an economy.

At the core of the Greens economic policy is once again the most simple logic; we live in a society and not an economy. *Feel free to Wikipedia this as Greg Hunt does for his climate change information. For more information on the Greens policy visit:

Furthermore they support the provision of fuel subsidies for mining companies and power companies, which accordingly distorts the market and changes behaviours. The former (cringe) baby bonus, and $200 relationship counselling is at odds with fiscal conservatism . Fundamentally they are using 'free market principles' to denounce taxes and subsidies that don't help them and their mates in big business. The economy supported by the Greens is one which isn't controlled by the interests of big business and is a tool we use to better our life. It's time that instead of quick economic fixes we consider implications of our economy




Vino Rajanran

Tasmania is a state in transition. The Global Financial Crisis impacted Tasmania’s largely export-oriented economy on a disproportionate scale that resulted in significant revenue losses, estimated at approximately $1.8 billion. This, coupled with a persistently high Australian Dollar, has seen our economy become less competitive, leading to rising unemployment over the past few years. Nonetheless, if trends over the past year are signs of things to come, the Tasmanian economy is seeing a turnaround. The state’s unemployment rate has now fallen for five consecutive months and there are nearly 2000 fewer people in the unemployment queue following a peak last year. In the next four years, Tasmanians face significant challenges to the continued recovery of its economy. Firstly, the Federal Liberal Government has already indicated that it will repeal the Carbon Tax, an initiative that has seen Tasmania benefit compared to our interstate counterparts. The introduction of the Carbon Tax saw an additional $70 million delivered to our state-owned Hydro Tasmania, a significant increase that saw our budget bottom-line improve, resulting in more funding for health, education, and other essential services. The Federal Liberal Government is also under pressure from fellow Liberal Premiers from the bigger and wealthier states to review the GST distribution formula and move to a per-capita method of distribution. Moving to a per-capita formula would see Tasmania’s budget worse off by


$700 million. This would affect the state government’s ability to provide essential services such as health and education. It is therefore imperative that Tasmania has a strong leader and a strong leadership team in the forthcoming years. Tasmania needs a Premier that will stand up for all Tasmanians against the tidal wave of conservative governments across the nation. Over the course of her term, Premier Lara Giddings has consistently championed policies to improve outcomes for all Tasmanians. She worked with Julia Gillard to deliver on two of the most significant reforms in recent history: the Gonski School Funding plan and the National Disability Insurance Scheme, both of which have been put in the firing line of the Federal Government’s Commission of Audit. It is Premier Giddings’ leadership and conviction that we need in the coming years to actually stand up against the larger states and the Federal Liberal Government when it comes to funding for our services, transforming our infrastructure for a new economy, and more importantly, to ensure that any review of the GST distribution model will not leave Tasmanians disadvantaged. The Tasmanian Labor Party is best positioned to lead Tasmania into this era of uncertainty. The Tasmanian Labor Party is both socially progressive and economically rational. It is committed to seeing Tasmania transform into a modern dynamic economy, one that is based on the principles of sustainability, without

economic irrationalism. This is evident in its push to reform the energy sector, giving consumers choice and driving down the cost of electricity. It’s evident in the commitment to planning reforms that has resulted in a single planning template for the whole state, the vision and drive of its Premiers past and present to introduce the National Broadband Network in Tasmania, a key infrastructure development opposed by the Liberals. And most admirably, its constant push to encourage greater economic engagement with Asia with Australia’s first state-based ‘Asian Century White Paper’.

“It is committed to seeing Tasmania transform into a modern dynamic economy, one that is based on the principles of sustainability, without economic irrationalism.” While dedicated to its economic transformation agenda, the Tasmanian Labor Party does not shy away from important social reforms. The Tasmanian Labor Party has, in the past decade, transformed Tasmania into a reformist, progressive and socially inclusive place for all Tasmanians. In the past few years, state parliamentary members of the Tasmanian Labor Party have also committed themselves to key reforms, including the access to reproductive health services for women, marriage equality, reforms to allow for voluntary assisted dying, amongst others. The Tasmanian Labor Party has also led the nation when it came to compensation for the stolen generation, introduction of family violence laws to help children feel safe at home and

the introduction of relationship laws to remove discrimination towards same-sex couples. Short of the rhetoric, since 2010, the Tasmanian Labor Party has also delivered: x




x x

$1 billion in funding for the redevelopment of the Royal Hobart Hospital and the Launceston General Hospital. $83 million into education reforms. Fair wage increases for more than 9000 community sector workers. 1500 new energy efficient affordable homes. Funding to empower Tasmanians with a disability and supported Disability Care Australia. An expanded renewable energy sector with the establishment of a $400 million Musselroe Wind Farm.


Come 15th March 2014, we have a choice between a leader and a party that will stand up for Tasmania, versus a leader who will shy away from difficult decisions. It will be a choice between a leader and a party that believes in sustainable economic development without economic irrationalism versus blind party ideology. And, it will be a choice between a leader and a party committed to crucial social reforms versus one that is stuck in its old, backward-facing ways.



Did you know the Uni has a veggie garden? It’s at Source! We talked to Jenny Calder, Source co-founder and sustainability expert about how Source came to be, and why you’ll want to get involved.

Emily Dunn

In 2005, four ambitious Geography students, Jenny Calder, Catriona Scott, Ben Wills and Hilary Bell, were brainstorming ideas on how they could support sustainable living within their community.

and put them all together,” Jenny says. With a goal set, they were determined to find a space to work with, but nowhere suitable presented. Fellow co-founder Catriona decided they should proceed boldly and build their own unique space. Spying an empty block of land behind the TUU, Source was conceived. Jenny says, “We felt an urban garden is the best way to be sustainable within society, and it’s a great way to connect people to their food consumption.”

“We all had great ideas – one of us wanted to start a co-op, another thought we could do composting, then someone suggested a garden, then we decided to be ambitious

“It was a massive challenge,” Jenny says. “We wrote this big proposal and gave a PowerPoint presentation to the Uni, and to our surprise they said yes! After that,



it really sunk in that what we were doing was real.” The Source team faced big challenges, such as finding funding, and harnessing the skills involved in building a public enterprise. “It was a long process, but when we finally opened in 2010 it was the most amazing thing we had ever achieved,” Jenny says.

or $50 for a larger box. Grocery shopping solved! They currently hold a pizza night each Wednesday too, so hang around and get to know some other members. They’re equipped with Wi-Fi, and serve lunch daily amongst a beautiful bush backdrop. It’s quite possibly the nicest place to study at UTAS.

Source now boasts a full-blown, mostly solar-powered food co-op, and a yearround organic veggie garden, complete with chickens. Students can join for as little as $18 a year (other terms are available). Membership offers an introduction to an incredibly friendly, supportive community, regular events, and opportunities for sustainable learning. They also offer a veggie box scheme; every Wednesday members receive a well-priced, surprise selection of organic seasonal fruit and veg. You could enjoy this for just $25 a bucket

It’s fair to say, the garden has really excelled since the outset. After a year away in 2012, Jenny returned to the project and it all really hit home. “When I came back I was so proud to see how it had inspired, prospered and evolved without me. To see other people appreciate what we’ve given to the community; seeing people eating lunch in the garden, and especially seeing the garden thrive from all the care and energy volunteers have contributed; it’s really fulfilling.”


Source is not only a labour of love for all involved, but proof that sustainable living is feasible and rewarding. “Our goal for the future is to become financially sustainable; and to keep inspiring people to believe that community and sustainable food is the way forward,” Jenny says. Every member of Source is a co-owner, and can have a say in its progress. Source runs entirely on volunteer power, and every dollar spent goes directly back into ongoing initiatives. For more information on Source, the art of sustainability or up-coming events, see their website at or go visit them in real life! The chickens don’t bite! Celebrate with Source during the O-Week night market! Live local bands and wood fired pizza, by donation. Tues 25th February from 4-9pm.




and the quiet beauty of the otherwise inaccessible wilderness area. Until someone starts humming the banjo tune from “Deliverance” and is promptly thrown overboard.

“FORWARD!” Paddles plunge simultaneously into the tea-coloured river, and the raft surges forward. The mirror-smooth water of a minute previous is roiling beneath the surface, and ahead of us white-capped waves pound across the submerged rocks.

“HANG ON!” The nose of the raft dips precariously over the drop, and we catch a momentary glimpse of the frothing river, before the bow lands on the water again and tilts us upright.

“Forward paddle HARD!” We drive the paddles into the white water and pull them back with force, pulling the raft away from the plunging mass of water behind us. A few more strokes, and with a loud cheer we are free of the rapid. 
We relax our grip on the paddles and glide effortlessly downstream, admiring the trailing leaves of Huon Pine dangling into the water,

This is the Tasmanian University White Water Rafting Club, and these are some of the many possible experiences and adventures that we share on our trips. The club does introductory runs down the Derwent River, which usually involve pirating paddles from other boats, learning how to flip rafts and the chance to make friends with people from all over the world. 
Other trips involve a few rapids interspersed between stretches of tanninstained rivers throughout the Tasmanian wilderness. Some rapids are only run during Hydro releases, when we can raft the central highlands on the Upper Ouse, or down through Launceston on the Cataract.
 Then, of course, there are the ten day trips down the Franklin River. This truly spectacular and world-renowned trip is done at half the cost of a commercial trip, and by the end you have friends for life.
 The rafting club even offers the opportunity to learn how to guide rafts down these rivers, progressing paddlers through training and experience. Rafting in Tasmania is one of the best and most rewarding ways of experiencing the state, and is open to everyone, of every ability. Make friends, challenge yourself, see Tasmania...
 and don’t forget to hang on!



Jessica Hancock


Topher Webster


Bushfire haze hangs heavily over Hobart, replacing the sky’s usual hue with a two tone orange-and-grey. Very comic booky. Through this unnatural shade I seek the aid of Hobart’s own preternaturaldefenders—the four, the only, Wham Bam Supermen. Fresh (though still hungover) from playing Falls Festival, local band WBSM are cracking knuckles and popping joints, preparing for the showdown of O-Week. Beneath the ominous canopy, Wham Bam Superman plug in, jack up, and rip into it. I’m bombarded with seven glorious songs, in a cataclysmic, homeworld-shattering explosion. These phone box fiends boast vocals that soar like a bird, synth which hums like a plane, bass capable of levelling tall buildings in a single sound, and it’s all tied together with the Wham Bam sounds of Damo’s destructive drumming. Eventually, the band take a smoko and allow me my questions.

Okay guys, let's get this one out of the way. who and what are your influences? Can you summarise your sound with one word each? Stormy: Regurgitatory. I was listening to some early Beatles stuff, and I tried to write the songs with some dirty Doo-Wop in mind, but it didn’t turn out like that. Still, old pop has been an influence. Damo: I was going for some kinda SwungTom Jungle Drum. Retro drums. I think we have a real retro feel.

Locky: And we’re a bit electro James: and rock Stormy: I guess “Retro-Electro-RocktoPopto” is how we’d describe it. Locky: Actually. Alternative. Or Indie [laughter] Stormy: What does ‘Indie’ even mean anymore? Anything that's not One Direction, I guess.


Stormy: Hah, well yeah. Though I do have a few “boy-bandy” songs written... I think I’ll save that for a b-side. That’s one of the upsides of doing the singer/songwriter course at the Con they make you write. I wrote twelve songs in that semester, and that’s what we’re playing now. As Supermen, what are your powers? Locky: We’ve discussed this before. I thought maybe being able to turn back time, but...

Photo: Eden Meure Stormy: I can tell the temperature of bathwater with my toes. James: I have super-sensitive nipples. Locky: I can survive solely off plankton. Could be useful, in a post-apocalyptic radioactive wasteland. Damo: I can calculate the salinity of the ocean. Also, every time I hit a drum, it pulses love, deafens children, and reduces road kill within a one kilometre radius. How are you feeling about the upcoming O-Week Concert? Stormy: super-confident. I mean, we’re still a new group, but I like the songs, and I’m excited about our music penetrating the ear-pussies of our listeners, impregnating their brains with our song-babies. Damo: ... I reckon people will dig our stuff. especially at uni, they’re a good crowd. They’ll really get into it. Stormy: Yeah, they’re all young and stupid and don’t know what they like anyway. they’ll love us!

Locky: Basically our audience are complete idiots, really (laughter). James: We’ve got 312 fans on facebook. I reckon after the show, we’ll have like 50. Stormy: Yeah, we’re on 312, and james has volunteered to do a nudie-run when we reach 311. It’s going to be a good year for us. we’re going to invest heavily in codpieces, to boost our image. and our ... regions. Locky: It’s all about boosting the region. So, supermen, any sneak-peaks into what you'll be wearing on stage? Stormy: Well, I’ll definitely be in a cape. and another with undies on the outside of the pants- that’s traditional.… There’ll be a few hats, capes and things. But we definitely wanna get away from the onesies thing. We’re definitely too good for onesies.


What's up next for you guys, an album? Or are you going to turn your powers to evil and aim for world domination? Stormy: I think a lot of musos are afraid to admit to their desire for world domination. they say things like, “we’re happy just playing a few gigs around town”, but you know it’s bullshit. They really want to be super-famous, so we may as well admit it. I’m not really cut out for this everyday-man lifestyle. I think probably the millionaire thing would suit me quite well - possibly massive fame. I think we’re all a bit like that—it’s our natural condition. Damo: We’re in it for the money, really (laughter). And the ear-pussies. Locky: People might get afraid of coming to our show. Guess we should just advise them to wear protection. Wham, Bam, thank you guys, it's been a blast. See you at O-Week!

THE COMMUTE Photo: Holly Monery The look of sheer horror that crosses people’s faces when I say I drive 300km per day to work never gets old. I almost enjoy it now when people I meet in Burnie ask where I live, as I smile coyly and reply, ‘Launceston’. However, nothing can rival the looks of dismay when I add that I also commute to Hobart each week for University. I’m not a crazy work-a-holic, nor do I survive on only Red Bull (well, not yet anyway). The fact is I am a hopeless romantic. I shamelessly fell in love with a man who lives and works in Launceston. My partner and I recently bought our dream house in South Launceston, and after three years of long-distance, moved in together just before Christmas. It has been an interesting time, but that is a whole other story. Sadly, many have questioned my motives for making the move.

Last year I was happily living in a share house in Dynnyrne, enjoying fishbowls at Amigos and wine-filled picnics at Salamanca. Today I am working full-time while finishing off my degree and driving all over the state. I often craft many intricate explanations for each question I receive, but it ultimately comes down to one, very simple answer; why the heck not? Petrol prices will always be expensive and weary eyes will be forced open every single day. In terms of highway driving, a good playlist can do wonders for the soul and a long drive is a surprisingly therapeutic way to decompress. I don’t think it will ever be possible to suppress the desire to slap my best friends over the face when they all catch up without me. Especially when I see their shenanigans posted all over Facebook and Instagram, but I will always love them. The fear they could forget about me is embarrassingly real. #yoloswag #bitchesbesexy.

Ultimately, we all have to move forward in our lives without wondering, `what if?’. I endeavour to live a life with few regrets and I truly believe it is the best for mental health. It is vitally important to live for what is happening today. While planning for the future is not a bad thing, you should keep in mind that nothing is ever permanent. And despite what you hope for, you just can’t change the past. I would be lying if I said doing The Commute was my ideal lifestyle. Just like every other person, I get home, curl my legs under myself and lament about slow drivers. I am certainly not looking forward to the moment when Week 10 hits with major assignments and the pressure of exams, but I am cautiously optimistic. It feels so very 1970s to have a `we’ll see how she goes’ attitude about my education, but I guess I will graduate someday. In the meantime, I will cruise the roads in my red Toyota Corolla. See you out there.

“It is vitally important to live for what is happening today. While planning for the future is not a bad thing, you should keep in mind that nothing is ever permanent.” x


Holly Monery

AT WAR WITH THE WEAKEST Our national anthem proclaims “for those who’ve come across the seas, we’ve boundless plains to share;” but the government’s persecutory treatment of asylum seekers, some of the most vulnerable people in the world, is at serious odds with that statement, and our nation’s character. Immigration Minister Scott Morrison may just have the easiest job in Australia. For $336, 599 a year his job is to not talk. About anything. To anyone. When the Coalition won the September election the first item on the agenda was to launch Operation Sovereign Borders, a scheme aimed at protecting our borders from the apparent influx of Irregular Maritime Arrivals. In fact, the total number of IMA’s since 1976 stands at a mere 61,964. The total number of IMA’s to ever arrive on our shores remains 13,000 shy of the number of permanent settlers Australia received from New Zealand, The United Kingdom, China and India in the 2012-2013 financial year alone.

“Tony Abbott has compared his Government’s secrecy over asylum seekers to secrecy during wartime by arguing that they are not providing information that could be of use to the ‘enemy.’”


Despite this, Prime Minister Tony Abbott would have us believe we should deal with the situation as we would a war, by promoting secrecy and jingoism— an interesting opinion for an immigrant who arrived in this country by boat. Tony Abbott has compared his government’s secrecy over asylum seekers to secrecy during wartime by arguing that they are not providing information which could be of use to the “enemy”. Justifying censorship in this way is both absurd, dangerous, and undermines democratic principles. Tony Abbott insists on calling asylum seekers “illegal” whenever possible. Australian law—and the United Nations Refugee Convention to which we are a signatory— stipulates that asylum seekers are permitted to arrive without valid documentation. As asylum seekers are often fleeing persecution in their home countries, applying for valid exit or entry documentation could place them in further danger. By definition, asylum seekers never enter Australia illegally. Regardless, new regulations introduced by the government in December prevent protection visas from being allocated to people who last entered Australia without a visa. This makes IMA’s ineligible to receive refugee status in Australia.

After cutting media briefings from being held whenever boats arrived – the policy under Labor – to once a week and then to an as ‘needs’ basis. Scott Morrison has tried to implement an out of sight, out of mind strategy, outsourcing his accountability in the process. By pledging to brief the media on an as needs basis, Morrison will face the media when and if it suits the government. Morrison announced in January that IMAS have been reduced by 80 per cent, but this does not necessarily indicate a slowing of boats leaving Indonesia for Australia. Instead, the Federal Government has implemented a policy of boat tow-backs, a dangerous policy that will almost surely result in loss of life.

During one tow-back it has been alleged that two asylum seekers jumped from their boat in a suicide attempt, but were returned to the vessel by navy personnel. It is then alleged that the Australian navy escort abandoned the boat close to Southern Java, where it ran out of fuel. Aside from placing people in extreme danger, the policy has further damaged Australia’s relations with Indonesia. Australian navy ships were found to have breached Indonesia’s territorial waters in January, a move one Indonesian MP labelled ‘stupid’, saying it is extremely unlikely that Australia was unaware its ships had breached Indonesia’s waters. Indonesia has since deployed a number of vessels to patrol its coast.

“The federal government has implemented a strategy of soul destroying for those refugees who have already been detained in Australia.”


“There is no queue, and there never has been.” The United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees has condemned the conditions on both Nauru and Manus Island, and reccomended that children no longer be sent there. Nauru was cited as being particularly inhumane, the Commissioner calling it “rat-infested, cramped and very hot”. Some journalists have reported witnessing people being referred to by numbers instead of names. There are also allegations that menstruating women are provided only one or two tampons or sanitary napkins at a time. Last year the United Nations found Australia guilty of 150 International law violations related to 46 asylum seekers being held indefinitely in detention centres around the country.

In a further censorship attempt, Nauru announced in January it would increase the cost of media visas from $200 to an incomprehensible $8000. Officially, the price rise is to increase revenue, although it seems designed to prevent foreign journalists from reporting on the horrific conditions in the Nauru detention centre. The $8000 is non-refundable if the application is denied. The UN Refugee Convention requires that host countries treat refugees with dignity and respect while their claims are processed, however not only are the conditions in detention centres harsh and inhumane, Scott Morrison has himself likened the situation of asylum seekers on bridging visas to that of convicted prisoners on parole. The Convention makes clear that refugees hold certain rights. They are required to be provided with the same rights as citizens in regard to access to courts, legal assistance, labour rights, access to education, social security and more. The Convention states that refugees have a lawful right to enter a country for the purposes of seeking asylum, regardless of how they arrive or whether they hold valid identity documents. These laws would also apply to Australians who sought asylum overseas.

“Some journalists have reported witnessing people being referred to by numbers instead of names.”

In the financial year 2011-2012 Australia’s net overseas immigration was 208,336, while that same year there were 7,379 applications for protection from IMA’s according to the Australian Refugee Council. There were 2,721 refugee applications from IMA’s approved that year, with 1,104 refused. The most common explanation is that refusing to accept IMA’s will stop people risking their lives in leaky fishing boats on the high seas, however the Federal Government’s tow-back policy doubles the amount of time asylum seekers spend in these boats on open water. Contrary to popular belief, Australia does not receive a large share of the global proportion of people who apply for refugee status. In 2012 Australia received only 1.47 per cent of protection applications, and we hosted only 0.29 per cent of refugees. These numbers include people who arrived here by plane, the number of IMA’s included in these statistics is much lower. There is also a persistent myth that asylum seekers are dangerous. This perception has been perpetuated by Morrison, who alleged in October last year that people from war torn countries are more likely to be involved in crime. A report last March found asylum seekers living in the community on bridging visas are actually 45 times less likely to be charged with a crime than Australian citizens.

In 2012, the number one country of origin of refugees worldwide was Afghanistan. However the location of the Australian embassy in Kabul constantly changes due to security threats, and does not have the capability to issue visas. Regardless, asylum seekers –including those from Afghanistan— are commonly referred to by politicians as “queue jumpers”. There is no queue, and there never has been. Maybe all this is simply because these people do not look like us, they do not speak like us, and their cultures and beliefs are different to ours. We are far from being the multicultural country that encouraged immigration from nonEnglish speaking countries under Prime Ministers Gough Whitlam and Malcolm Fraser, perhaps we really are just racist. In a democratic nation such as Australia the media is tasked with ensuring the government remains accountable to the people. Continued censorship and criticism of the media by the government undermines our democratic principles, stifles debate and leads to an uninformed and misinformed electorate. With 190,000 immigrants arriving in Australia this year, there must be space for the few thousand refugees who flee unimaginable persecution in their home countries.



Alexandra Humphries

It’s first semester. Maybe for some of you, it’s your first semester EVER. You’ve actually done it. You’re at university! Like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, you’re now going to be thrust into a new world of university life! Crazy stuff will happen. Like being naked in public at 3am for Scav Hunt. Or studying and being poor.



Wherever you’re at, there’s times when you might not feel too adult. Because adults are like, our parents. Adults get shit done. Adults don’t still get a bit scared of the dark or eat ice cream straight from the punnet. But it’s okay. Here’s a helpful compilation of things you should probably do now you’re an ‘adult’.

SHARE-HOUSING “GET OUT AND FIND YOURSELF A JOB AND STOP EMBARRASSING YOUR FATHER” That’s my favourite line from Muriel’s Wedding. But yeah, you should probably do that. Living with your parents until you’re forty-something looks fun in Step Brothers, but let’s face it, moving out is part of the rite of passage to adulthood. So you’re going to have to earn some of your own fat stacks. If you hate people, I highly recommend hospitality or retail.

PAY BILLS/MANAGE FINANCES Once you’ve got a job and you’ve got money you’ll probably want to buy some stuff. Like electricity. Or wifi. Or food. Or a record player that can convert your vinyl into MP3s. Or whatever. The thing is, you’ll have to organise that shit. Blowing a whole week’s pay at the Tele on a Wednesday is probably not the best idea. You’re also going to have to work out horrid, banal things like BPay, Service Tas and waiting in line with old people who smell funny in banks.


So you’ve got yourself a job, now you’ll have to find somewhere to live. This may involve other people. You might have a bunch of friends to move in with, or have met some randoms from Gumtree. Either way, to start with it’ll be great. You’ll have All The Freedom. You’ll have dinners together, light candles and incense and go halvesies in groceries. Then someone uses all your expensive face elixir. Or you get drunk and leave the full wheelie bins in the middle of the lounge room on bin night. It all gets a bit cramped and you hunker down in your room texting your REAL friends about how annoying these creeps you live with are. Which leads me to…

FEED YOURSELF PUTTING UP WITH OTHER PEOPLE'S SHIT Welcome to Adult Life. Sometimes, out in the big wide world, there are people a bit different from you and even though you’re convinced that they’re wrong/stupid/annoying, you’ve got to just accept it and move on. University is a big time for bumping into people with other opinions/thoughts/beliefs to you. And that’s cool! Rich tapestry of life etc. You can disagree, just don’t be a dick about it.

…On something other than noodles. It’ll seem funny for the first week. “Hey guys! Look! I’m a scummy Uni student living off Mi Goreng.” But malnutrition isn’t fun. Feed your head. Procure some real groceries and get your Matt Preston on. By which I mean, cook, not wear a cravat and slather yourself with peanut butter and bacon. Though by all means…

CLEAN EVEN THE REALLY GROSS STUFF Maybe you did some chores when you lived at home. Like washing up, hanging out the washing or feeding the cat. But now you’re a fully-fledged person, you’ll have to do all the dirty stuff that never occurred to you. Like washing the inside of bins where all the juice leaks through. Or cleaning the fungus off the sharehouse shower. What if your ‘guests’ stay over?


TAXES “You can do it online” they said. “It’s really simple and you get heaps back!” they said. I can’t even.


Regardless of your political beliefs, you should check that shit out. Don’t just vote for who your parents always have. Don’t vote for who you think sounds cool/looks hot in their campaign pictures. And maybe don’t do a ‘donkey vote’, unless you feel you’ve got a really good reason.

Ruby Grant

HAVE FUN! Being an adult means you have to do inconvenient things like sort out your own shit, but it doesn’t have to be a drag. Be responsible in matters of sex, intoxicants, illness and death. Respect other people’s stuff (material and otherwise), but remember that part of doing well it making sure you enjoy yourself. Party like it’s 2014.

Illustrations: Milly Yencken




Illustration: Milly Yencken The Vice President of Tas Postgrads Society takes you through everything you need to know to complete your PhD with success, whilst maintaining your sanity. Congratulations you have secured your place on a PhD program, your project is beginning to form. It’s time to put your brain and body to work at last. But beware, although your PhD will have many thrilling moments of discovery and insight, there will also be many pitfalls and perils to overcome and avoid. Here, we TasPostgrads hope to offer a few survival tips to get you through the bad times and enjoy the good.


1.SEEKING HELP AND ATTAINING WISDOM Supervisors are like the Yodas of the academic world. They see all, know all and are there to help you. Talk to your supervisor regularly and try and get feedback from them to constantly improve your PhD. Also it doesn’t hurt to massage the ego of your supervisor and give them some chocolate – it is a wellestablished fact that all supervisors like sweet things.



Writing is a fine art. Practice it as often as you can. Perhaps write an article for Togatus!


Talk to Postdocs in your department. They are the seasoned warriors of the PhD battlefield. Make them your friends.


6.BECOME A CELEBRITY 3.THERE IS A WORLD OUTSIDE YOUR PHD They say distance makes the heart fonder. So spend some time away from your PhD. Have a second love affair. Do something totally unrelated like conquering whitecapped waves with the Uni Rafting Club. Or overdose on chocolate with the Tea and Chocolate Society. Your PhD will forgive you.

The three years really fly so quickly. So budget your time well, but don’t forget your second love affair!

I know it. You know it. Your friends and family know it. You are the smartest and most amazing person in your field of research. It’s now time to let the rest of the world know it. Publishing your work is one of the best things you can do. So aim to publish your research throughout your PhD and gain a reputation within your field.

Stay on top of the current literature by reading one paper a day. Broaden your horizon, read papers outside your field of research. Might I suggest the Drop Bear article by Dr Volker Janssen.

10.IGNORE TIPS 1–9 The only way to find out how to survive a PhD is to do one. Therefore all advice is useless…

DOING A PHD CAN BE AN ADVENTURE! 4.GO TO CONFERENCES Conferences, apart from their academic value are a great way to network, drink, sightsee and make new friends in your respective field. The Graduate Research Conference held each year by UTAS is a great place to get started.

7.LEARN TO ACCEPT THAT YOU WILL HATE YOUR PHD It’s the seventh week of still not being able to fix the problem. You want to drown yourself in your morning coffee. This is completely normal and all PhD students go through this, so don’t worry. Just remember why you wanted to pursue a PhD and push through the hate.

TasPostgrads is here to support you throughout your postgraduate journey. You can email us anytime at or visit our website for updates on Postgrad events on



Debbie Baird-Bower

IN BLUE EYES Like the depths of the ocean the breath of sky A blanket of ice, a tear cooled Illustration: Alice Camm

off dry Nothing could capture a soul so dear ...Than the faint of blue eyes close and near Spots and freckles disfigure the skin A flawed personality, limbs so thin Nothing outweighs this presence of scars ...Except blue eyes, the powerful camouflage The rarity exists. The existance it rares But like a shadow or a spark, you know it is there They plead, they beckon, they seduce they cry ...In blue eyes, there is an aesthetic emotional ride Brown exudes power of darkness Hazel the honest, Grey the timeless Still, nothing matches nor replaces the scene ...Than the beauty of blue


Essie Charlotte

eyes so hardly seen

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TO TOGATUS We’re looking for people to join the team to contribute on things like… Student issues, politics, science, international affairs (student or otherwise), music, law, social issues, creative arts, environment, performing arts, creative writing, poetry, culture, film and TV… You get the point. We’re also offering the chance for people to take on responsibilities in advertising, marketing, social media, online content creation, blogging, web design, photography, assisting with sub editing.

Back cover art is produced and owned by Mark Buckland. Mark is a habitual mature-age student at the School of Art, Hunter Street.When not pursuing his art, Mark works as an English-second-language teacher with migrants and refugees. See more of his work at



Togatus Issue 1: 2014  
Togatus Issue 1: 2014  

New, views, events and haikus.