Pelican Edition 2

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pelican. est 1929 Volume 88 Edition 2. Stop

Bryce Newton // Editor Ruth Thomas // Editor

Ben Yaxley // Lifestyle Editor Callista Goh // Fashion Editor Harry Peter Sanderson // Arts Editor Jesse Wood // Modern Media Editor Maddi Howard // Science Editor Mike Anderson // Politics Editor Pema Monaghan // Literature Editor Ryan Suckling // Film Editor Tess Bury // Music Editor

The University of Western Australia acknowledges that its campus is situated on Noongar land, and that Noongar people remain the spiritual and cultural custodians of their land, and continue to practice their values, language, beliefs, and knowledge. The views expressed within are not the opinions of the UWA Student Guild or Pelican Editorial Staff, but of the individual writers and artists.

Jesse Wood // Cover Art Harry Peter Sanderson // Inside Cover Art Elise Walker // Design Chelsea Hayes // Advertising


When you’re lying in bed, alone, trying to sleep, but the heat is keeping you awake, and you’re thinking about your day, your life, your loves or lack thereof, and the doubts start to kick in, and the stream of thoughts in your head isn’t helping, and you wonder why it is that you thought you could ever do anything, be anything, because you’re just this one small, plain, person, and you can feel yourself falling into a spiral of fears and anxieties, and you start to feel more and more tense, and not calm and relaxed as you know you should be and that makes you more scared and anxious and then you start wanting it to STOP because you’re tired, and you don’t want to believe it, but also because right now you just want someone to hold you and say don’t be silly, I believe in you, you can do this thing called life, you’ll be right kid. But there’s no one there, not right now, and it’s just you, there, alone, wishing you could make everything in the world right. Wishing you knew how. One of those Newton laws about things continuing to move unless acted upon by an equal force makes me think that to stop anything must take a hell of a lot of effort - you need to match its hate, its anger, its pain with an equal amount of love, and that’s a hard task, especially when you’re feeling like you’re on your own. Solution: find your clan. Everyone says that subcultures are dead, but I know for a fact that’s not true. They stay more underground and are harder to find, but they’re there, so find your thing, your jam, your kink. Track down your people. They’ll love you. We’ll love you too,

Ruth Thomas and Bryce Newton Pelican Editors 2017



features 3

Letter from the Editors

6 Playground Hannah Cockroft 7 The Quiet Lady botticellibitch 8

Please Stop

9 House Jesse Wood 15 Poetry Harry Peter Sanderson 16 18C: Chilling Effect or Rights Protection? Mara Papavassiliou 17

Bone Talk Jesse Wood

46 Presidential Address Nevin Jayawardena 47 Words Mike Anderson




Harry Peter Sanderson

Tess Bury

Callista Goh

10 Inside the Artist’s Studio Gabby Loo

18 Album Reviews Jasmine Tara Erkan Tanner Perham

19 Sewing Ruby Mae Mckenna


Column Talk Harry Peter Sanderson

12 Pack Up the Moon: Scene 2 Bryce Newton

20 Boat Shed Tess Bury

13 Corrective Retrospective: Maïmouna Guerresi Simrin Panag


39 My Mother’s Shoes Ruth Thomas 40 Garage Sale Luce Nicholls, Nick Morlet, Patrick Leclezio, Skye Newton, Charlie Viska, Bryce Newton

modern media



Jesse Wood

Maddi Howard

Ryan Suckling

22 Requiem for a Netflix: My List Jesse Wood

26 Kind Regards, Mother Nature Maddi Howard

30 Meeting David Statton Ryan Suckling

23 Red Means Stop Danyon Burge

28 The Fight to Protect our Most Vulnerable Maddi Howard

24 Keanuvision Jesse Wood

32 Maren Ade, Directs Ryan Suckling 33 Dolipher Tate Bryce Newton




Ben Yaxley

Pema Monaghan

Mike Anderson


36 Review: Swing Time Ryan Suckling

42 The Art of Lynton Crosby Ian Tan

37 An Arresting Design: A short history of the Stop Sign Ed Taylor

43 Trans-Pacific Partnership Emi Paige

House Hacks Jessica Cockerill

27 Bread Skye Newton 34 Hobbies, Reviewed Rainy Colbert

38 Pedestrian Crossing Sarah Yeung


44 Protest Emma Norton Kelly Dunn 45 #FAKENEWS Leah Roberts

Playground Hannah Cockroft There is a sense of uneasiness that comes with standing in an open space in the middle of the night. I feel exposed, as though someone could easily be watching us from an unlit park bench, or from a house across the road. Sitting in a circle with my friends I check over my shoulder every now and then; if not for a dark figure emerging from the tree line, then for police on the lookout for people holding beer bottles in public spaces. My vulnerability is intertwined with a sense of elation. There are a set number of years in your life where sitting in a park at 2am can be considered an appropriate social activity. I do not know what will happen within the next ten years of my life, whether I will have much money or if I will be planning a wedding or if I will be trying to get a baby to sleep or if I will be watching The Vicar of Dibley in my knickers eating curry puffs. In any case, the chance to sit in a dimly lit playground with my bum on a wet metal seat, one hand on a see-saw handle and the other holding a can of premixed captain and cola is thinner than a very thin potato chip, so I feel like I should get amongst it. My friends call me to join them on top of the monkey bars. I am not a good climber as I have very poor upper body strength. I also have very poor lower body strength. In primary school I was unable operate the monkey bars, simply clinging on the one bar with both hands with a Mufasa-esque ferocity instead. I would fall and get a mouth full of dust and sand. The grit would remain in between my teeth for the next five meals, no matter how many times I would rinse. My friends climb other things too; trees and cricket nets and football posts. They ask me to join them. I get one leg up, and try to grip my hand to something. This is not an activity that I can participate in. I turn to the merry go round. I run around it, pulling it with me. I do not run well in sand, I do not run well anywhere. I jump on, out of breath and red in the face. The spinning sky looks like a whirlpool, and I look foolish. My lack of ability in being able to tackle playground equipment is not purely at the fault of my body (I liken my limbs to damp, cold noodles dropped onto a dirty floor, picking up bits of dust, dog hair and dead ants), but at the sense of unease. My favourite thing to play on when I frequented playgrounds was the swings, feeling myself go further every time I swayed my legs back and forth. But then I would think of what would happen if I flew off and smashed my teeth into the bitumen, or if I swung a complete 180 without enough momentum to carry me over and I dropped upside down mid air and cracked my head open on the bar. If I couldn’t grab the next monkey bar properly in my hand then I could land on my arm and snap it in half. If the merry go round went too fast I could spew. The more fun you have the more likely you are to be maimed.


The Quiet Lady botticellibitch


please stop talking to me buying ferns domesticating animals selective candy distribution cropping me out of pictures supreme personalised stationery sinful thinking family reunions burning my coffee spiders paid parking paying me to talk to you Bill Murray character assassination ranting hotboxing your room complaining confusing me with my twin brother cultural appropriation being sad the press what you’re doing right now feeling weird about being 19; you’re still young wearing guild t-shirts pretending you care talking to my son by our office ventilation voluntourism lying to me telling me you’re going to delete Facebook buying bucket hats fun runs wearing purple and orange pretending you’re a good person Stussy and Yeezy my neighbour going through my drain using buckets pretending that Reid is a library (still no desks)


House: Jesse Wood


Inside the Artist’s Studio Gabby Loo Gabby (Gabriella) Loo is a fourth year Fine Arts student at UWA, a multidisciplinary artist, casual writer, and emerging curator. In her practice she documents and visually collages fragments from her personal history and localities. Her work is of an expressive nature that bears the sentimental quality of past memories. Gabby actively participates in local exhibitions, and her work has been published in The Lifted Brow and Voiceworks. The next project she is involved with is Belonging, an interactive community exhibition from young people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. She is currently developing a series of experimental short story comics from her bedroom studio, which is pictured here. For breaks she often likes going for spontaneous suburban adventures for inspiration. Then retreating home for a cup of Assam Bold tea, equipped with new photos, sketches and observations. Keep an eye on for more details, and catch her on Facebook & Instagram as @gbbyloo


Column Talk Harry Peter Sanderson “Consider the momentous event in architecture when the wall parted and the column became” — Louis Kahn No one can tell you who conceived or designed the column, but in doing so they created a pillar of western architecture. First, and perhaps least significantly, we may regard the Doric column. Of all the orders of columns – and this cannot be disputed by anyone – the Doric is the simplest and most unpretentious column (this is of course unless we consider the Tuscan column a primary order, which we should not do, since it is not Greek and not of the original three orders. In fact, the Tuscan order is a later and inferior subset of the Doric order). Doric columns have an unremarkable capital (crown) with a prismic rectangular abacus (top part of crown) and slightly tapered echinus (part connecting crown to column shaft). The shaft, which often broadens very slightly downwards, is fluted in its formal state, but can be unfluted. Doric columns, given neoclassical revival in France and Germany through the 18th century, transcended their architectonic utility to become a symbol of venerable Republican values. In the 19th century, a Parisienne customs house bearing Greek Doric columns suggested incorruptibility; in a Bavarian Protestant church they promised a return to an untainted form of spirituality. They were equally connotative in the United States, frequently supporting the exterior of libraries, banks and court buildings. The Doric Column came to be seen as a dependable figure of American sentimentality, like Atticus Finch or Abraham Lincoln. Today they form a protective phalanx at the entrance to the monument of the latter, until very recently a site of great honour and significance. Visit the Temple of Artemis at Corfu, the Temple of Hera at Olympia, the Temple of Poseidon at Sounion, or the Parthenon at Athens to see the inviolable stillness of the thing. Column upon Doric column faces you rigid and unwavering. Place a hand on an individual base, if permitted, and feel the philosophical significance of Doric design. The fact that this column was made 2000 years ago means very little. It had to be made sometime. It stands now, and it is about us.


Pack Up the Moon: Scene 2 Bryce Newton HERMANN: A cow must observe, and a cow must speak. The cow will commit to that which the cow feels necessary. Years ago, I saved this very cow as a calf. Yes, he was once my own lower leg. We had to depart one another, torn ligaments and flesh do not always have the will to reconnect, though we sent flowers and chocolate with fake names and false sentiment. Unfortunately, a sharp blade is stronger than any attempt to patch up a broken body.

Hermann delicately draws back his kimono to reveal a prosthetic leg with the control of someone who has examined the controller on the children’s television series Thomas the Tank Engine. He has waited for this moment and his research has proven enough. We had grown together and I couldn’t bear to see him go, I have never liked anything bear related even from childhood. I took my severed calf to the water, the local pool, and he began to swim. I fell asleep by the lapping waves of the children’s pool (I could not test my own leg with dangerous depths) and was shaken awake by pool attendants angered by my streaming blood. I was angered by my blood also, no semblance of control or cleanliness. They escorted me from the vicinity after I had collected as much blood as I could hold, which was very little, and I sat on a curb side mourning the loss of so much which was once a part of me. As I wept into a dirty handkerchief, a pool attendant called to me asking if I had lost a calf in the water. I nodded overwhelmed by all I had endured, and they led out a black cow with amethyst eyes. I was not sure whether my own calf had transformed, stronger than even apart from me or if this was simply a cow enthused by public swimming places. I took him by the lead in an effort to acquire something and we embraced, though the calf struggled without arms. My calf and I lived together but felt the distance that only different bodies can cause. What we lacked in closeness we salvaged in speech. The calf could not seem to grasp the English language so I become fluent in cow. As a child, he spoke in short haiku, and limerick. I discouraged the latter as I found them tiresome and simple. Perhaps I was too harsh on him in his younger years, there was a lyricism, a sense of beauty I did not understand back then. He was like a young leaf and I, an old tree. Never knowing that the leaf could one day be more than a leaf. Though most leaves do fall to the ground and shrivel in the dirt, so I was making informed decisions. I’ve never been one for basing outcomes on slight chances. I wonder now, if I have stopped my own calf from something bigger than subjective taste.

Dorothy smiles in the background at a story she has heard many times, whilst Monty looks on with the face of someone who is watching a tiresome film they do not connect with, for context, perhaps something the opposite of A Bug’s Life. On the night of the infidelity, my calf, now a large cow, was walking in the countryside as he often did in his younger years searching for inspiration. Poems do not write themselves, and without hands it was I who acted as his scribe. So, it is I that writes the poems really. He who writes does not need to write only that which graces his own thoughts. I have never written my own thoughts, writing letters home is impossible. It was perhaps a blessing that I severed my calf, for through him I can now speak, as we are one. My family think I am overly fond of a good feed and sleep, a lush field and the first lap of water in the eve. My calf wandered into the field that neighboured your own, and watched bodies move like worms in the moonlight. Which sounds quite grotesque, but he only speaks in nature terms and refused a rephrasing, though luckily allowed the removal of the term “the vigour of a wet worm”. As you can imagine, bodies slick in the moonlight with sweat inspired him enough to wander home immediately. He has an incredible sense of direction. He woke me from my slumber with a steady hoof and I began to write his thoughts. (End Scene)


Maïmouna Guerresi is an Italian artist who is currently based out of Senegal. She works in video, sculpture, photography and installation. Of all these, photography is her most important medium. While she is well known in some circles, she is exhibited infrequently, and in my opinion entirely underrated. Mirrors, phantoms, light, hijabs, and labyrinths abound in the work of Guerresi. They are answering metaphors to the metaphysical question of spirituality. How can we present the unknowable and its followers? How can we come to terms with unjustifiable traditions? Her photographs glisten with impossibility. She works in the space around illusion, only ever going so far as to allude to distortion. She is not a hokey opticalist, but someone who mixes translations, dreams, spirits and perspectives. Her works are an intimate look into mysticism of faith, and its links in infinite dimensions. Shadowy phantoms are the main feature of most of her works, often clothed in part by black holes or chasmic doorways. Striking reds and whites cut sharp lines in minimalist composition, all in an exploration of the relationship between humans and the cosmos. The images dilate and wobble, a mysterious blur of beginnings and endings. She is too contemporary a figure to historicise as belonging to any one group. Suffice to say her work is contemporary, fabulist, and in my opinion positive in its universalism. Decadent costuming feels futuristic, yet takes such strong leave from traditional islamic and African embellishment that it is also firmly rooted in the past. Her photos form a set of shimmering parenthesis around tradition and possibility. Formally, I think things nod to David Hockney. There is a consistent play of planes and perspective within her work, translated first or most notably from painting to photography by Hockney in the 1980s. We see this boldly in works such as ‘Little White House’ and ‘The Virgin of the Little White House’, both of 2004. The spatial ambiguities are certainly similar to most early Hockney figure paintings. The line drawn structure is lifted almost directly from his ‘Self-portrait with Blue guitar’ of 1977. Guerresi is also prone to dissecting her canvases into many parts. With all her spiritual ornamentation, it might be tempting to associate this with Christian di- or tripytychs. However again I see it as more in line with Hockney’s play of uneven picture planes and spatial formatting. Look at her ‘Students and Teacher’ 2012. It might not resemble Hockney’s truly disjointed photography, but it does recall his larger segmented paintings. The flat geometry of the whole exercise is also reminiscent of his LA works, such as ‘The Splash’. Lastly, and most glaringly, she repeats the motif of the dining table, central to Hockey’s work, even if a symbolic central flat plane. Look into ‘M-eating and The Light Salt’ from 2013, and see how the table cuts through the horizontal plane like ‘Still Life On a Glass Table’, 1977 or ‘Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)’, 1971. Perhaps I am wrong, but I don’t think so. Being of the Islamic faith, Guerresi attracts much political attention, which often overshadows her aesthetic power. Feature after feature attempts to contextualise her work as at the forefront of an Islamic polemic, and takes very little time to appreciate the artfulness of it all. In fact, Guerresi is no polemicist, and her art has no real political force to it. In fact she is interested in proclaiming the mysteries aroused by faith and tradition. To debase aesthetics in favour of some nationalistic, ethnic or religious cause does no service to a true heir of Borges, Neruda and Cleopatra. When Maïmouna Guerresi is discussed, her art is not. In this way she is both overlooked and under-appreciated.

Corrective Retrospective: Maïmouna Guerresi Simrin Panag


Jessica Cockerill 14


18C: Chilling Effect or Rights Protection? Mara Papavassiliou It’s Monday morning. Another session of the Joint Committee on Human Rights public hearing is set to commence. A group of ten parliamentary committee members sit in formation around the back of an old carpeted room, deep in Victorian parliament. Hundreds of papers are strewn across their imposing configuration. A desk of expert witnesses, prepped with their own neat folders, faces them square on. Chairman Ian Goodenough opens the public hearing into ‘Freedom of Speech in Australia’ with some broad-faced questions, and the politics resume. Taking turns, the committee members reveal their views on section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act (1975), Australia’s controversial racial vilification law. It’s a roller coaster of emotion and power plays in just one day of the Committees public hearings. Specifically, the Committee is looking into whether section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act (1975) is an impermissible restraint on freedom of speech. Liberal Senator James Paterson asks the witnesses pointed questions. He seems satisfied that their answers are fitting in with a grand, secret scheme of his, like some villainous, parliamentary Socrates. WA Member for Brand, Madeleine King is fair and sympathetic to everyone. Her support of the law as it stands is only occasionally detectable through soft and scoping questions designed to highlight the negative impacts of racism. NSW Member for Berowra Julian Leeser, on the other hand, channels the sad incredulity of lovelorn Moe Szylak through his repeated disappointment that, no, the witnesses did not yet read his submission (much to the amusement of the rest of the committee). But, clearing the fog of media misrepresentation and looking past the vague political designs of parliamentarians, what is really going on with 18C, and why is it now receiving a joint committee hazing? First, we must consider the purpose of 18C. Broadly, it operates as a symbolic law, it is Australia’s primary legal signal that racism is not okay. Importantly, 18C does not create a criminal offence. It will not, generally speaking, result in any serious consequences for anyone who contravenes it. Andrew Bolt, for example, was found to have contravened 18C in 2009 when he made offensive and insulting statements in the Herald Sun about certain Aboriginal people with Caucasian features. The resulting ‘punishment’ was that the Herald Sun had to publish a ‘corrective notice’ about the relevant articles. But the original articles, with the offensive comments intact, are still easily available online ‘for archival purposes’. Neither Bolt nor the Herald Sun had to pay damages, or even apologise for the offensive comments. In this case at least, the effect on freedom of speech was apparently minimal. The true operation of the law is clear. It is not coercive. Instead, it results in expressive remedies that are far less onerous than those of other laws. For example, defamation laws, which do result in large remedial damages, curtail freedom of speech far more directly than 18C does. 18C only signals that you can’t make racist statements, and this is not a bad thing. But 18C has also been criticised as having too low a threshold for harm—that is, the mere requirement of ‘offense’ or ‘insult’ is dismissed as an instance of ‘political correctness gone mad’. Such a reading of 18C ignores how the Courts have chosen to interpret these key terms. The legal threshold is, in fact, far higher than common parlance might suggest. 18C requires that the statement in question has a “profound and serious” effect on the targeted person or group. 18C does not cover “mere slights” or statements that result in ‘personal hurts’ and nothing more. ‘Mere slight’ was how the Federal Circuit Court characterised statements made online by two Queensland University of Technology students in an infamous 2016 case, after a university staff member, Ms Cindy Prior, ejected them from an Indigenous-only computer room. Why the Human Rights Commission did not exercise its discretion to dismiss this case at first instance remains a controversial question, considering that the claim was found to have “no reasonable prospect of success” by the Circuit Court. The mismanagement of the Prior case drew much criticism to the already widely (and unfairly) slated law. It was, in large part, what spawned this recent Joint Committee into Freedom of Speech, and has led to several calls for the codification of the Courts’ more onerous interpretation of the threshold test. But repealing or scaling back a law with a purpose tied up in symbology sends a powerful message. If we scale back a law operating as a legal signal to dissuade a particular activity, we implicitly support the opposite view—that is, if we repeal the only law in Australia that directly signals that ‘racist insults are not okay’, we send a message that seems to endorse the view that ‘sometimes they are’. If we’re really looking to protect freedom of speech in Australia, the erosion of 18C protection is not the answer.


Bone Talk Jesse Wood I walk past this bone on my way to the bus stop every day and seeing this toddler’s femur is generally the highlight of my day. Today I walk to the bone and see it’s been shattered by some turgid fiend/rolled over by your mum’s Honda Civic. Rip in pieces Toddler’s Leg Bone.

This is a bone milk bottle and tooth made out of bone. It’s in a spot where I remember seeing a dog’s body. I imagine other travellers came across the body and boneby-bone took what they needed, like some sort of slightly more grotesque version of The Giving Tree.

Me and my brother used to chuck the ol’ witches chin around after school. Sometimes I would try to hit him in the ear, but he’d be ready. Always popping and locking out of trouble. Like some poor-man’s Jumanji, I am cursed to hold this testament to bad oral hygiene until I learn a ‘valuable’ ‘life’ ‘lesson’. Pshh, whatever mum.

My neighbours are the worst, they’ve been giving food to the bandicoots again. I’ve never seen bandicoots so muscular and handsome in all my days. Every time you hear the Slim Dusty playlist start booming from over the fence, you know they’re going to start pouring cans of coke on the ground. I don’t know what their endgame is, but I for one can vouch that bandicoots are not worth the effort it takes to eat them.

Some dickhead wore this to a party I went to once. I was all like ‘Hey man I’m a vegetarian, I don’t like your ribcage and jaw piece necklace’. But he just turned and walked off!! He was about to go round the corner when he stopped, turned his head to look at me, and winked, instantly taking off into the nights sky. Tacky as all hell.


album reviews If the Courtneys’ second album were an inanimate object, it would be the spaghetti bracelets I once wore around my arm as a lonely pre-teen girl, praying for her first period to come so that she could complain about it to all the other girls in the school bathroom. Do not mistake the innocence of their sound for amateurism; the perfect simplicity of it produces sounds that you thought you’ve known all along. The lush, sunburnt songs of this album are filled with the hope and optimism of a 13-year-old me.

The Courtneys The Courtneys ll Review by Jasmine Tara Erkan

The Vancouver trio, consisting of ‘Classic Courtney’ (guitar and vocals), ‘Crazy Courtney’ (bass and vocals)
 and ‘Cute Courtney’ (drums and lead vocals) have not drifted astray from their first and previous album, and having since signed with New Zealand label Flying Nun. They have managed to keep the lo-fi garage pop sounds of their first album alive, having embodied them into varying shades of something reminiscent of a Courtney Love style (minus the heroin). My personal favourite track off the album is ‘Iron Deficiency’, it’s one of the grittier tracks on the album, but it executes a few uplifting riffs that give you that cliché ‘fuck everything I’m quitting my job and leaving’ kinda feel. The paced rhyming of the vocals in this one makes me think of the bad girl attitude of The Runaway’s song Cherry Bomb, while the lyrics imply the kind of self loathing you feel when you’re sick and need change (My hair is breaking/ My body is aching/ In the mirror, I look forsaken). The majority of the tracks have an empowering quality to them, the kind of power that makes women want to throw their Mooncups at men, regardless of the fact that these songs have nothing to do with female empowerment. Early romances, teenage vampire boyfriends, moving to Australia, TV and alien invasion are all amongst the topics explored in these songs. With it’s 90s grunge attitude, dreamy female vocals and surfy bass grooves, this album will take you on a nostalgic bubblegum-punk journey through the world of suburban streets, maybe even making your Barbie dolls have sex. It’s dreamy, easy to love, light hearted and infectious. It lacks profound meaning but who gives a fuck about that anyway.

This record teeters between hook rich garage pop and dark reflective noise music, sometimes within a single track. It begins with one of the more frantic tracks Tall Glass of Water, which bursts into the room with a swing and stagger. This energy then cuts completely and the next part of the song slowly builds the energy again, with Darcy crooning lowly and slowly (think: The Strokes or Car Seat Headrest) with a choir of voices joining him at the tail end of the piece.

Tim Darcy Saturday Night Review by Tanner Perham

From here the record twists and bends, dancing with several genres and influences. It feels as though Darcy is walking through the indie rock genre and spending a moment to become acquainted with the predecessors. One track for instance, You Felt Comfort, feels very much like an ode to Neutral Milk Hotel, a simple chord progression is paired against a repeated vocal melody which Darcy eventually lets bend and reach above the trees. Pop songs obscured slightly with a curtain of psychedelic delay and phasers, folk tracks textured with bowed guitars, sunny sepia clad love songs, there is an impressive range of emotions and colours across Saturday Night.


Ruby Mae Mckenna 19


Words with Boat Show Tess Bury Pelican interviewed the local garage pop quintet Boat Show after their recent Melbourne tour. We met up with them in the Mojos band bathroom to take 5. TESS BURY: What’s your favourite boat model and make? ALI: The Azimut 100. It’s a luxury, it’s 100 foot long, and it’s got lots of bedrooms and bathrooms and ensuites. There’s usually a tanning bed too. JENNY: Is there a helipad? A: No, it’s too small for that. But that’s good because you don’t get messy hair. J: My favourite boat is the 420 dinghy’s. Do you guys fight? A: Never. What’s the food like in Melbourne? A: Hell good, we got five-dollar steaks on a Monday. Luxury steaks. J: And food on toothpicks. For a dollar, and it’s an honesty trust system, where you just bring the amount of toothpicks you had. A: I had three, I forgot to pay. If your band were in a movie what one would it be? A: 10 Things I Hate About You. No, we’re the band in Freaky Friday that covers Lush. J: Or New York Minute, where one of the Olsen twins is a serious business woman A: That’s Jenny. J: And then the other Olsen twin is a rock lord. A: And that’s me. The music whizz. If you guys were a subject at school, what would you be? A: Maths, because we’re math rock. If you were another band, who would you be? A: We’d be The Runaways but not so fucked up. J: The Veronicas. I forgot my sheet of paper with all the questions and info I needed for this interview, but did you know that Boat Show can be anagrammed into things such as Abs Tho Ow, and Swab Hoot? A: That’s sick!

[we continue to Google anagrams of Boat Show for 5 minutes] This toilet’s pretty hot isn’t it? A: Yep. Where can we find you on the Internet? A: Facebook, Instagram, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, and Triple J Unearthed. What does the future hold for Boat Show? A: Power to all women.


Requiem for a Netflix: My List Jesse Wood The world is a beautiful and complicated network of occurrences that independently mesh together to create a framework for the profundity of life. But I still don’t understand how things get on my Netflix ‘My List’. Regrettably I’ll have the ‘boys’ over and we’ll ‘watch’ a ‘movie’. Naively I open the ‘Netflix My List’ to try and spark some creative ‘juice’ for some engaging and wholesome content. But then the blood falls out of me. Every embarrassing choice I’ve made over the last 50 years is now incarnate, visible to all. Here are some of the more tolerable examples: 12 Monkeys All I know is that every time I see his face on the cover I think to myself “What would Bruce Willis be doing with a dozen chimps, and why did the American government pay out millions of taxpayer dollars in subsidies just to get this bourgeoisie hobby on tape?” Silence of the Lambs I’ve seen this one, unfortunately no lambs involved at all. More unfortunate though is that people always suggest we watch Red Dragon when they see this. I don’t know about any Dragons, but I’m sure RED in the face at this suggestion. What do I look like, some sort of fantasy loving deviant? When Western Australia secedes, we’re keeping the dragons in the dungeon where they belong, and out of our curriculum. Being the only kid in Perth, Western Australia, to not read Deltora Quest was hard enough. Taxi Driver Every 12-year-old boy knows that to prove their masculinity they’ve got to start misreading texts from an early age. Luckily, I grew up in a house with no television or Yachts, so I only saw this film last year. This being in my queue is sort of like a safety net. “Oh, you haven’t seen Taxi Driver? Shit, this guy must be the purest soul on god’s green earth. Jesse, do you want to be the godfather of my sweet little baby boy triplets? Do you want to be my dad?” Why is it that directors always take opportunity to put themselves in their own films in minor parts in very ‘extra’ scenes, so they can portray horrible racists? “Oh, Taxi Driver? Martin Scorsese changed my life.” Round the Twist There’s nothing wrong with Round the Twist, but I never picked up that Pete and Linda were siblings. I had to look at the Wikipedia page to work this out. I think I was too distracted by the penile birthing scenes, and the water nymph that parasitically infests Bronson’s willy. Surprisingly everyone is okay with seeing this in my queue as it is deemed sufficiently ‘Aus-core’. Last time I watched this I had swine flu. Blackfish Nobody really wants to watch Blackfish, but everyone wants to be seen wanting to watch Blackfish. It’s easy to get behind. Almost all hyper basic ‘banksy’ style ‘deep’ art features a fishbowl and an oversized fish or variant on that theme (modernity am I right????). So, when Blackfish came out it confirmed what we already believed… about 60 times over. I keep this in my queue because maybe one day I’ll pick up the courage to sit through 2 hours of baby whales being whipped by the grinch. Trollhunter My dad added this one. Best choice on the list probably. The downside is this will probably be misconstrued as a documentary about millennial culture. Good Will Hunting This is a complete mystery to me. All I can imagine is two hours of Robin Williams and Matt Damon sharing a warm moment. People see this in my queue and think: “yeah that film, I haven’t seen it either, but I’m sure it’s like taking a warm bath, and going to bed early. Maybe reading a nice book, and drifting off into a restful slumber.” Frida I have watched this one but it won’t go away. Was generally okay until Geoffrey Rush showed up as Leon Trotsky. Weird and gross. Having this movie on your queue is kind of low-key like participating in Day of the Dead while being a white colonist from Perth, Western Australia, with no connection to Mexican culture aside from liking the sugar skull aesthetics.


Red Means Stop Danyon Burge 23

Keanuvision Jesse Wood Circa 2002 my older sister took me aside and showed me a folder on the family computer filled with Keanu Reeves related images. She had compiled the contents from every Keanu based Google search and fan site that was available to a Year 9. There were calendar jpgs, slow moving gifs that sparkled and terribly compressed forum avatars of Keanu’s emotionless head. But one set of imagery stuck in my memory.

I remembered this as: “avid Keanu Reeves enthusiast gives up four years of her youth to simulate living with Keanu Reeves.” In 2017, through a delicate line of questioning I discovered the source. a member of a secret online network of dedicated Keanu fan blogs. The site was run by someone under the suspiciously insectoid sounding alias of ‘Krix’


Above: two examples amongst thousands of Keanu word art and really small desktop wallpapers. There is something wholesome about the majority of these images, Krix just loves Keanu! She loves everything about him, from his acting career, to his very mediocre and badly named musical venture Dogstar. Down to the candid pics of his sweaty, badly shaven face. And with captions like “Great googly-moogly, the man can work some stubble,” Krix solidifies her reputation as a colony of ants attempting humanlike behaviour. At a time when world leaders were probably the only ones using the net to orchestrate the dreaded ‘globalism’, KeanuVision was incredibly popular. The comments people left, frozen in time with sentiments like, “BTW, I saved all my empty Powerade bottles. I washed them out and now I reuse them for water,” “I like blue Powerade :P” and “Powerade is not hazard for health?” And finally I find it, entry upon entry of the poorly rendered bodies. Sim-keanu and Sim-krix gyrating against one another in really small jpgs with drop shadows. With an intricate narrative that spans several years, Krix seduces every version of Keanu she can download. Theres also this weird side plot where she also beds every member of keanu’s lame band. By the time the site is on permanent hiatus Krix has had 22 children that will never grow into adults, and will never know who their real fathers are. Good site 10/10.


Kind Regards, Mother Nature Maddi Howard Art by Danyon Burge stop Ignoring, Dismissing, Denying, Exceeding, Meat-eating? Feeding the birds, Clearing, Polluting, Animal testing, Trampling, Blaming, Complaining, Twiddling-of-thumbs, Exploiting, Empty promises, Extinction, Disease, Dodging, Exempting, Overruling, Domineering, Throwing-money-at-it, Taking-money-from-it, Big corporations, Small corporations, Any corporations, Surplus, Unsustainability, Avoiding, Poaching, Materialism, Selfishness, Takingadvantage, Under-appreciation, No appreciation, Cruelty, Barren landscapes, Carbon, Digging, Building, Smothering, Cramming begin Heeding the warning signs.



The Fight to Protect our Most Vulnerable:

An interview with Cathy Lambert, Supervisor of Perth Zoo’s Native Breeding Program Maddison Howard Behind the tourist-attracting exhibits at Perth Zoo, huddles of airconditioned cabins house some of our state’s most endangered species. Amidst the research spaces, customized enclosures and specially designed breeding facilities, Cathy Lambert, supervisor of Perth Zoo’s Native Species Breeding Program (NSBP) is hard at work. Five species compose this project, and it is Ms. Lambert’s responsibility to keep tabs on their progress. The Western Swamp Tortoise, Numbat, Dibbler, White-bellied Frog and Orange-bellied Frog are the nominated species, participating in captive breeding programs in an effort to replenish depleting numbers in their wild populations. Ms. Lambert and her team at the zoo are on the frontline in this fight against native population extinctions, flying the flag for ‘Team Conservation’. The Native Species Breeding Program has a superlative track history; the Chuditch and Shark Bay Mouse have both lost their ‘endangered’ status in favour of less dire labels ‘threatened’ and ‘vulnerable’ respectively, whilst the release of approximately 50 dibblers a year into the wild is now a standard expectation of the program. So I was curious to know what Ms. Lambert might suggest could be done to improve an already successful program into the future? I posed the question – ‘If you were handed a large sum of money plus guaranteed contingency funding for 20 years, what would you spend it on?’ In addition to using some of the money to fund research into Western Swamp Tortoise genomes, Ms Lambert prioritizes construction of better facilities – specifically, facilities that can cater to the needs of breeding Orange-bellied and White-bellied frogs, “[with] purpose built frog facilities we would be able to manipulate temperatures and pressure and all sorts of things”. Prioritization of customized facilities addresses a primary consideration in the breeding program – the facilities need to replicate the species’ native environment, or as close as possible under spatial constraints, to ensure that upon release into the wild, the animal does not have to adapt to completely foreign surroundings. Further steps taken to ensure an animal’s time at the zoo does not impair its chances of survival in the wild include limiting human contact, altering diets and stimulating specific behaviours for animals that are approaching their release date. “The dibblers get fed more live food before they get released…we throw crickets and cockroaches and mealworms and moths into their enclosure, they always have to hunt for their food through their leaf litter anyway, but before they get released we just increase the amount and the diversity. We give them little exercise wheels to get them stronger and fitter because they’re going to have to move long distances to


find their food out there so we want to make them as fit as possible. With any animal, if they get stimulation when they’re young [they] get smarter. So we try to stimulate them with hiding the food. Sometimes we put it in gumnuts and Banksias so they have to look for it and put their hands into the gumnuts to pull the food out. We try to make their enclosures as complex as possible and move things around all the time between them so they get used to different smells.” I was also interested in the factor of age on a species’ capacity to persist in the wild. Do individuals that have been kept in captivity for longer struggle more than the younger ones, upon release into their native habitat? Can an animal ever get too old or too used to the zoo environment to be safely released into the wild? Ms. Lambert explains that age does factor into an animal’s ability to survive, as does individual temperament and character. “The young ones do do better if they’ve been in captivity for less time, so we try to get the younger ones out into the wild first. Occasionally you might have one that isn’t going to go well so you don’t want to breed with them, if you’ve got one that’s a little bit dopey and you don’t think that it will do very well in the wild then you don’t want to be breeding with it as well because you might be perpetuating that trait. If it’s really a welfare issue for not releasing an animal but we don’t want to breed with it we’ll hang on to it or try and place it in another zoo in the eastern states they can use it for education purposes.” In addition to juggling “dopey” or non-responsive animals in the breeding program, a major recurring challenge is that of maintaining genetic diversity. In cases such as the Western Swamp Tortoise, whose population got down to just 25-50 in the wild, it is very likely that there is significant inbreeding present, that’s to say, it’s likely that most of the individuals in the population are related to one another in some way. Inbred populations mean limited gene pools, which can in turn lead to increased susceptibility of a species to extinction events and disease. In the case of the Dibbler, a species with a slightly larger population size, specific measures are being taken to try and monitor genetic differentiation. When questioned about the need for the Native Breeding Program and whether its role in our wider community is important, Ms Lambert responded, “I remember someone saying something about when we lose a species it diminishes us all, [and] I think that’s right.” This perspective of the intrinsic relationship between human and nature is integral to conservation philosophy, and the extraordinary conservation work of the NSBP at Perth Zoo is testimony to this philosophy.


Meeting David Stratton Ryan Suckling Invariably an article about David Stratton begins with something like, “the man synonymous with Australian cinema”. It’s a curious and peculiar thing to write; effectively equating one man with Australia’s modest film history and culture. I wonder how comfortable David is with this sort of cultural appropriation. Given that a film has been made him, his career, and his relationship to Australian film – I’d say reservedly comfortable. He won’t stress the point, but there’s no denying the extent to which David has dominated film culture in this country since the 1960s. Born in England a week after the Second World War began in 1939, young David was being groomed for the family grocers business, yet showed an avid interest in films from an early age. It was his grandmother who took him to the cinema during the war, with a father stationed in Burma and a mother who volunteered for the Red Cross. At the age of 19 David founded a film society in his home town, programming from the rich expanse of international cinema. He came to the attention of the Federation of Film Societies in England, and was made a board member in the western regional division, still only 20 years old. It was during this time that David decided to come to Australia under the 10 pound offer, wanting to travel before his father plunged him into the family company. He arrived in Australia in 1963, continuing his voracious film watching in Sydney. What baffled David when attending the Sydney Film Festival was the censorship that came with almost every film shown. In some cases, films that he had watched and loved in England, were banned in Australia. This mobilised David to raise his concerns with the festival’s board – an action that eventually led to his appointment at director of the festival in 1966. He did not return to England, but stayed to direct the Sydney Film Festival for the next 18 years. David Stratton: A Cinematic Life, directed by Sally Aitken, charts the rising career of David alongside the development of Australian cinema. It hovers around the prolific, daring, rich period of the 1970s – a time of astounding films including Walkabout (1971), Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975), and David’s personal filmic seducer, Wake in Fright (1971). This period has been called Australian New Wave, signalling the remarkable creativity and vitality that defined the films released. With nearly 400 films produced between 1970 to 1985, it was a startling resurgence in Australian film after a near extinct film industry following the war. I asked David, considering the film’s predilection for films of this era, if he thought it was fundamentally nostalgic, wishfully looking back to a richer time in Australian cinema. He simply responded by saying, “there’s nothing wrong with nostalgia.” Hands clasped around a cup of hot citrus tea, David nurses a cold on the day I interview him. Nevertheless, he talks with ease, posterity, and frankness on ‘a cinematic life’. How then, does he reflect on contemporary cinema in Australia? “I think it has it’s ups and downs. I think we’re making some interesting films. The problem is distribution. I mean, we can make some very good films but if they’re not well-marketed and distributed then its hard for them to find an audience, even if they get good reviews. For example, going back three years, The Babadook (2014) – which I thought was a remarkable film – did very well overseas but nothing here. Predestination (2014), another remarkable film, again, did very well overseas but nothing here. The one I’m fearful for at the moment is Hounds of Love, a West Australian film, which has been finished for almost a year and it’s an excellent film. But I fear it won’t find an audience because the distributor may not be able to handle the marketing and promotion it deserves.” An ode to Australian cinema, David Stratton: A Cinematic Life does feature more of film than it does of David. Aitken has sought to trace the interlocking bond between David’s life and his love of film. From watching the 1946 classic The Overlanders as boy in England, the film meanders through Australian filmography, constantly clutching at the facts of David’s life. “One of the things I wasn’t even aware she [Aitken] was doing was teasing out these areas in which my life intersects with some of the Australian films I particularly like. I’ve never thought of that before, but she makes it surprisingly clear. That was something I learnt when watching the film for the first time.” I think Stratton has a very precise methodology when it comes to reviewing films. For him, it’s a process of perception, experience, and reflection – reworking his gut reactions into a cohesive case. The central tenet being, does the film succeed in what it set out to achieve? He’s fair and reasonable, unyielding to any ideological or aesthetic school of thought. “The first thing I do is experience the film and make notes about my own gut reactions. If I’m writing for The Australian, for example, I feel I have to take into account the readership, and the sort of people that read The Australian, and maybe try to be a little bit subversive with that readership. But don’t publicise that too


much because they might wake up to me. “This was true when reviewing for At the Movies, the basic thing is – does the film work for you, and do the filmmakers succeed in what they set out to achieve? But then you have to put those thoughts into a format that will fit the audience, or the readership. When I used to review for Variety – an American trade paper – they encouraged very honest opinions of the films without fear or favour. I could review a film for Variety at far greater length than I could for The Australian, or At the Movies even. In a way Variety was quite a pleasant outlet, and was also very good accreditation with a very old, established newspaper.” It’s within this precise, film-by-film analysis that I feel my grandiose cultural questions buckle and slide under his pragmatism. On the question of whether Australian films find it difficult to break from certain cultural myths and archetypes, I mention Baz Luhrmann’s Australia in passing. Well, of course David fixates on the film and offers a review stored away, and now at the ready. “I didn’t share the general negativity over Australia. I think the title is silly. When I saw it a second time all the traditional material Baz was evoking from films of the 1940s and 50s – it all made sense and it all came together. I think there’s still some dodgy acting around the place, but I think it’s a very underrated film, Australia.” It’s this specificity and obsession with film that gives David an encyclopaedic knowledge of not just Australian, but world cinema. At the beginning of A Cinematic Life, David introduces the audience to his filing system of all major directors in film history. Each slip of card has the director and their entire filmography printed with it’s date of release. It’s an extensive and thorough collection, epitomizing the organised obsession of a man in love with film. Successfully, A Cinematic Life resists the tendency to present David’s thought cohesively, without doubt and ambivalence. I ask David about changing one’s mind about a film, and the example of the Australian classic The Castle used in the film. “The thing about The Castle is that comedy is the most difficult genre, because what I find funny you might not find funny, and that’s quite understandable. I think The Castle is such a specifically Australian humour that when I first saw it – I should say that I try not to find out anything about a film before I see it – I thought it was a bit ordinary. It didn’t make me laugh, and it’s certainly not cinematically interesting, so I gave it a very lukewarm review. Then people starting say to me “you’re so wrong about The Castle”, and so I looked at it again, and I liked it a bit more. Now I’ve seen it about five times and I’m beginning to really like those characters. But I think it’s no accident that it didn’t do any business outside Australia. They had high hopes for it in England, America, but it did nothing. I think it’s so specifically Australian, with a specifically Australian type of humour that it’s hard to cover elsewhere.” In a similarly nostalgic tone to A Cinematic Life, he talks of the significant changes to film festivals since he finished directing the Sydney Film Festival in 1983. “In the 1960s and 70s if you wanted to get a film for the Sydney Film Festival you pretty much had to go to the filmmaker. Today, it’s all sales agents. But then, there were no sales agents. Part of my job was to get to know the filmmakers, and in a sense befriend them. Then you could say to Bernardo Bertolucci, I really want The Conformist for next year’s SFF. He could say “sure”, because it was his decision, and the same went for other filmmakers too, like Kurosawa for instance.” David speaks of these towering filmmakers in passing, as if they are, in fact, distant friends. “I think the SFF shows too many films these days. You could argue that it gives you more choice, but the bitter truth is that by trying to pack in so many you inevitably show some films that are hardly worth screening. It seems to be like numbers rather than quality. That’s a trap that some festivals fall into.” I ask David what his program would look like. “I would show 34 new release features, and a retrospective of say 10 features. That’s much more curated.” Under the purview of communications personnel, I manage to wrangle one last question from David Stratton. He teaches a history of world cinema course at the University of Sydney for continuing education. What might he have to say to film students, or simply students interested in film? “I would say see lots and lots of films. Not just new ones but old ones as well. I think it’s like music, if you want to play jazz or experimental music, it helps a lot if you know the basic notes, and I think it’s the same with film. The best filmmakers, including this guy (points to poster of Martin Scorsese’s new film, Silence) are steeped in film history. Now you don’t have to watch everything the way I do, but certainly I think you’ll be a much better filmmaker, or reviewer, or anything, if you have seen all the key films from the 20s to the present day.” Like Scorsese, David is steeped in film history. A Cinematic Life renders this fact indisputable. Nor can you deny the intelligence, openness, and dedication David has brought to Australian film culture.


Maren Ade Directs: Toni Erdmann and Everyone Else Ryan Suckling Impersonation and improvisation are crucial to comedy. The very playfulness of the act is pitted on the performer’s ability to imitate and startle. It’s what stand-up audiences expect, albeit with varying satisfaction at curtain-call. It’s expected of sitcom and satire, and all the more rewarding in excess and without apology. I doubt these expectations get carried over to a German comedy film. In case of Toni Erdmann, they frankly should, as it’s this quality that largely defines the father and his alter-ego Toni Erdmann in the third film by the rising filmmaker, Maren Ade. Ade is a film director, screenwriter and producer. Based in Berlin, she released her first feature film in 2003, The Forest for the Trees, about the difficulties faced by a young school teacher moving to a new school. The film was essentially an exercise in film training, as it was her film thesis for the University of Television and Film in Munich. Since then Ade has made two more feature films; Everyone Else and Toni Erdmann. Both films demonstrate the evolving sensibility of Ade – both comic and loaded, ambivalent and unabashed. At the European Film Awards, Toni Erdmann won a swathe of prizes, including Best European Film, making it the first time a film by a female director has won the top prize. Winfried Conradi (Peter Simonischek), is a divorced music teacher stumbling through the days, adorably caring for his blind dog. He appears, and is somewhat presented, as a pathetic figure, the sort life has dealt mercilessly. Yet it’s his penchant for practical jokes and fondness for popping a pair of fake teeth in his mouth midway through conversation, that undermines his hopelessness. He secretly follows his estranged daughter to Bucharest, where she works as a consultant in a multinational oil company. It is in Bucharest that Erdmann comes to life, preying on his daughter and her colleagues he creates fanciful stories and orchestrates bizarre exchanges. Far from self-indulgent, and in proximity to his daughter, Winfried delights in Toni Erdmann, his comic alter-ego. The effect has been phenomenal as the film has garnered critical acclaim at every international film festival, and lauded by audiences alike. I think it comes as a surprise to non-German speaking audiences; that is, not simply the idea of a German comedy film, but an outrageously funny one at that. In fact, when I mentioned going to see the film to my English parents, describing the film as a German comedy, the response was, “does such a thing exist?” I can now unreservedly say it does. The humour is subtle and situational, almost residual in that is builds up over a sequence of scenes. Laughter is so often the only reaction available. Ade superbly holds the dull, disappointing relationship between father and daughter up against his daring acts of exaggeration. The movement from low to high, from drudgery to playfulness, has a cruelly comic effect. It’s a technique and theme pursued in her previous film, Everyone Else (2009). In this film, a German couple are holidaying in Sardinia – spent mostly lolling by the pool, having sex, and wandering through the surrounding dry, vegetated terrain. Chris is an architect, bookish and appeasing. He’s content to spend to the holiday in seclusion, quietly pursuing his interests and plans for a potential reconstruction in the area. Then there’s Gitta. Impulsive and playful, she’s desperate to not be cooped-up in the stifling villa of Chris’s mother, with its bizarre collection of colourful ornaments. One scene masterfully illustrates their differences. Gitta wants to go to the local disco, childishly begging Chris to take her. He gives in eventually, yet once they are outside he become resolute and ambles back into the house. As they sit in the oppressively decorated room with the stereo, Gitta sits in fury and boredom. Feeling the need to placate her, Chris put on the stereo and performs a camp, frolicking dance before her. It’s remarkable that in only one scene Ade captures the rivalrous, adoring, combative, and longing elements of their relationship. Both Chris and Gitta are in a comic whirlwind of expectation and projections, intensified by a summer away spent exclusively with one another, removed from routine. For Toni Erdmann, it’s not to say the film descends into flippancy, all out to make as many cackle and cry as possible. There is an element of humour as endurance, the bedrock when the securing structure of life shakes and turns into shards. But Toni Erdmann runs deeper. The father uses the fixture of the alter-ego to make fumbling attempts at reconnecting with his daughter. He encounters indifference and even hostility from her, yet continues to linger in the circles she walks, remaining hopeful. Maren Ade has carved out an incisive, perceptive cinematic approach through which human relationships appear comic and bizarre, yet still deeply ambivalent. Her films are subtle and poignant, constantly at work to see what it means to connect, and stay connected to another person. As seen in her two most recent films, some go to great lengths to keep the taut life-thread intact, while others seem blithely unbothered by where they stand in relation to the meaningful other.


Doliver Tate: An Aquatic Imagining of Submarine For Simon C Bryce Newton 33

Hobbies, Reviewed Rainy Colbert This year I am aiming to take up 100 new hobbies. #4 - First Aid I love getting wounded, especially when it’s mild or an accident. Getting hurt makes you feel really cool, sort of like the bowl cut man in No Country For Old Men. I fell off my bike today. I wasn’t paying enough attention to where I was riding, and then when the wheel went off the path I found myself horizontal on the ground. I was scraped up and winded yet my head was the same, continuing to think the same things I was thinking before I turned upside down. As my grandpa once said, the body is simply just a vessel for cool ideas. After the incident, a group of cyclists slowed to a halt and stood around me in concern. Noticing the attention I decided to ham it up, making like I’d been shot in the gut by a scary guy’s bullet. Ignoring their questions I picked myself up and limped away into the wetlands, making them think I was walking off to live my last final hours in peace by the river. In reality I was going there to wash off some of the blood and reattach my bike chain. #5 - Snorkelling I’m not sure if I have a phobia, or just a prejudice against seeing good underwater. I’ve told people before, if man were meant to be a fish, then the caveman would’ve been fish. The scientists have yet to prove it. I can’t stand them. The living ones I mean. Fish. I can’t stand being in the same room as a fish, and the ocean is one big fish hotel room. In the ocean the decor sucks. Things are slimy, the walls move about, and everything is salty. On top of that, the only sound you can hear underwater is the heightened sound of your own breathing, making you feel the bit in Silence of the Lambs where Bubbalo Bill grabs the camera and follows Jodie around in the dark to give her a fright. Scary. In conclusion, snorkelling is just not for me, and if I were senator I’d outlaw it. #6 - Consumption Today with the summer heat busy hotboxing our unventilated home, I was feeling trapped and agitated, ready to Taz out. Then I remembered my lessons in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and decided to try the ancient strategy of ‘doing something nice for yourself’. Ice cream, I thought. Four of them. Half an hour later I was sitting on the park bench with a Bubbalo Bill, a Peter’s Dixie Cup, a Milo Scoop Shake and a Cookies and Cream Maxibon. Frost still clung to the severed head of Bubbalo Bill; left in the freeze-box too long, his famous bubblegum nose looked soggy and worse for wear. The size was small, the flavours hard to differentiate, and the nose instantly crumbled in my mouth like a


ball of icing sugar. What did they do to the gum? In the Board of Nutrition’s war against Cowboy Culture, Bubbalo Bill serves as just another casualty. I was sad to learn that the Dixie Cup too was nothing but a tiny serve of vanilla ice cream, fully melted by the time I got to it. Like an underage kid with a bottle of his dad’s spirits, I shot it back mindlessly, forgetting to taste it, forgetting that ice cream is not a bottle of my dad’s spirits. Moved on to another thing. Nearly identical in concept to the Yowie Choc Shake is the Milo Scoop Shake: a weird bucket of melted sludge dotted with flecks of chocolate or something. The only real difference between the two comes down to the pictures on the front. One has a drawing of a badass looking Yowie (representing love and respect for nature), and the other has a picture of an Olympian swimmer (representing wearing a dumb looking swimming cap, and accidentally swallowing pool-water). Judging by these facts, I know what team I’d rather be on. (Yowie). By the time I arrived at the main event, the big expensive Maxibon, I was feeling a little bit ill and my mouth was all sticky. God must have been watching out for me, because just as I was about to take a reluctant first-bite, the Maxibon exploded in my hand. It was a miracle. With all the biscuit and chocolate and goo sprayed over my clothes I tried to salvage what I could by taking my shirt off and hoovering it with my mouth. It’s hard to give my thoughts on the Maxibon without getting the full experience, but yeah, good? After walking home shirtless, swinging it round and round over my head to dry it out, I went and had a much needed lie down. I think it is both a curse and a blessing to have no one around to tell me not to do things any more. #7 - Whittling Wood carving! A fun thing to do out in the bush, and in the bedroom. The only tools you’ll need for the basics is a sharp little knife and a soft chunk of wood. Don’t buy the wood from Bunnings- you’ll find that trees have wood in them anyway. Whittling is a relaxing thing to do when anxious or depressed. I like to carve Elves. You can carve them from any tree branch, however, whittlers beware: you are bound to get a fair share of barbaric comments regarding the apparent ‘phallic shape’ of your elves. This is a problem I deal with a lot. I will address it below. Firstly, why on earth would I want to whittle a phallus? I could literally see that any day of the year (unless immersed in sub zero temperature - exposed pen 15 can/will contract frost bite). Secondly, I’ll have everyone know that it IS actually an elf. I made it and therefore I should know. People, please refrain from making such ignorant and unfortunate accusations in the future. Finally, remember your knife safety, and have fun!

Hobbies Reviewed will continue next issue. Send suggestions for more enjoyable activities to


Swing Time Zadie Smith Review by Ryan Suckling Zadie Smith’s new novel Swing Time (Hamish Hamilton) begins with humiliation. The unnamed narrator is looking back on her career so far, as a personal assistant to an international pop star. Now consigned to a lonely hotel room, she has fallen from this seemingly privileged position, cut off from a world she has known for almost a decade. Her existence was public and acrimonious, with tabloid spreads and a brief encounter with homelessness. Swing Time is partially removed from the locality and ordinariness of her other novels, such as White Teeth, where testimony is given to the lives of rotten teenagers and disillusioned parents. It’s not that these expertly drawn characters and places are missing – the central plot hinges on the relationship between two girls from North-West London – but Swing Time is offset by the hyper-reality of celebrity and PR. It detracts from the locality and ethnographic quality that has largely defined Smith’s previous novels. But she is writing in a different world, one that can’t be sustained by attention to a single area of London. No, this novel requires – and provides – a more cynical tone, fragmented narrative, and unsteady voice. As a young girl, the narrator dreamed of becoming a dancer. She attended dance classes at the local church, where the talented Tracey – brown like her – commanded every move with poise and elegance, a standard that the narrator was unable to even remotely reach with her flat and arch-less feet. Their tanned likeness unconsciously drew them together, and they became entangled as friends and rivals, brought to the same church every Saturday to dance to ‘white’ music. Their mothers were not of a likeness. Tracey’s mother paraded her daughter around like an accessory in ‘satin yellow bows’, whereas the young narrator was ‘an accessory only in the sense that [her] plainness signified admirable maternal restraint, it being considered bad taste – in the circles to which [her] mother aspired – to dress your daughter like a little whore’. In such passages of simple social observation, Smith identifies class as the fundamental determinant in a person’s freedom. As much as race and ethnicity are integral to her work, the problems her characters are lumbered with are essentially structural and rooted in a system driven by capital. The possibilities presented by human talent and human capabilities are limited by institutions, policy, a warped education system. A system which fails to make a star – or even an accredited professional – out of the supremely gifted. A system which fails Tracey. The star in this novel is Bendigo-born Aimee (think Madonna or Kylie Minogue). It is pop star Aimee that gives the novel its geographical scope – moving the narrative between London, New York, and West Africa. Aimee, a humanitarian, wants to make her dream of building a school for girls in a rural village a reality. In the name of PR and logistics the narrator is therefore repeatedly packed off to (it seems) Gambia. In keeping the precise country obscure, Smith taps into the conception of Africa as an homogenous cultural (chaotic) bloc, a manner of thinking that our narrator is susceptible to. She befriends Hawa, a young spirited girl from the compound; and falls for Lamin, translator, guide, and love interest of Aimee. Suddenly, the narrator is in a culture imbued with rhythm and dance, a place where the body responds instinctively, without mediation. Here, there is a sense of community, where each person in relation to another, dependent on the other; making the assertion of a pre-figured identity futile, even laughable. This is what attracts her to dance: “But to me a dancer was a man from nowhere, without parents or siblings, without a nation or people, without obligations of any kind, and this was exactly the quality I loved.” It’s a freedom beyond identity. The question of identity and Aimee’s fame also aligns the novel with our cultural predilections, one of which is the crazed obsession – fuelled by every media outlet imaginable – with celebrity. The bejeweled figure unflinchingly followed by a mass of mini-celebrities, clutching their portable life sources, at the ready to amass on a chipped nail, or the dodgy stage graphics making universal claims at the concert of a pop star. It’s tempting to place the novel alongside popularised critiques of social media, if only because Smith captures the experience of living in a digitalised world, and finely renders that 90s moment before it all hit. Under her optic, our ‘energized’ social lives are blatantly performative, identities propped up and running on steam that cannot be indefinitely recycled. Soon or later someone’s going to have a meltdown. Talk of Zadie Smith’s novels has largely focused on personal identity – the expression of it and search for it. This is a reading she eloquently resists in this most recent novel. Swing Time as bearer of the search for identity is more pronounced as Smith uses the first person for the first time. Yet the narrator is shockingly without a recognisable and clear-cut performative identity. She is confused, ambivalent, and unsure of everything she says and does. Initially, her benign identity is oppressed by her mother’s desperate urge to educate herself, in the hope of an identity achieved. Their house is full of books on sociology and political science, mobilising her to champion black women and the working class. Having the uncertain narrator as the novel’s guide warps these ambitions in a comic, and tragic, sense. She is unable to carry these identity-bound causes around with her, and cultivate a closeness with her mother’s history, her history. Everything is distant and out of reach. There’s sense of existential bleakness about this novel. The narrator’s experience in real time – her movements, touch, taste, smell – are not related to the reader with any sense of knowing. Her physical situation and sense of perception is essentially hindered. I felt uneasy following her through the city, her apartment, and through the dust to the compound. These details remain glazed over, missed, forgotten, unattainable – this is a person emptied out and drifting. She is without a concrete identity to cling to, thrown into the world, a person who slips through human discourse. The result is an existential text embedded in modern world of a young woman. It borrows and departs from literature on the lonely artist (mostly a man), uprooted and scavenging for meaning. Arguably, Smith reworks this literary archetype to engage with what it’s like to be our unnamed narrator.


An Arresting Design: A short history of the Stop Sign Ed Taylor Whether you prefer to walk, wheel, ride, or drive, you will recognise the red, octagonal sign meaning “Stop!” Most children, at most places in the world, have learned to recognise it from an early age. However, you’ve probably never stopped to wonder how this sign, this symbol, this red shape became so ubiquitous. Perhaps this brief history of the stop sign will provide some answers. Permanent stop signs started appearing in Michigan, America’s erstwhile automotive heartland, in 1915 and were 2-foot, white, squares with black lettering. By 1922, they had spread, along with the personal automobile, around the country and required standardisation across the then 48 states. The octagon seems an odd choice of shape. In fact, that was the driving force behind the decision. It couldn’t be confused with any other sign from a distance in either direction. It was also easily identifiable at night before the introduction of reflective paint, with black lettering on a yellow (initially pink) background from 1924 to 1954. Across the Atlantic, the European states of the League of Nations were endeavouring to standardise their own road traffic signs and signals. Stop signs themselves were not regulated in the 1926 International Convention relating to Road Traffic. Therefore, making use of the presence of numerous delegates in Geneva to sign several more exciting accords, a plucky subcommittee presented the 1931 Convention concerning the Unification of Road Signals. A sign, “consisting of a full [equilateral] triangle with the point downwards,” painted white or “light yellow” with a red border was to “[inform] the driver that he must give way to vehicles moving along the road he was coming to.” With ratification by all its major nations including the USSR, Europe’s closest analogue to a stop sign was, in appearance and function, a give way sign. In the spirit of global reunification following the Second World War, the issue of universal traffic signs arose again in Geneva in 1949. Though this pedestrian movement towards international legal cohesion has been vastly overshadowed by the other treaties and protocols concluded there, the 1949 Geneva Protocol on Road Signs and Signals did create the first UN accepted “Stop at intersection” sign. Retaining the its colouring, the triangle was placed in a red circle and could be inscribed with the vernacular “stop” in black. Now to Vienna in the Autumn of 1968. Most Europeans owned motorvehicles, and those prosperous European communities enjoyed increasing mobility and international commerce. This occasioned the UN’s Vienna Convention on Road Signs and Signals. The convention adopted, for the same reasons the Americans had 46 years earlier, the octagonal stop sign. They also kept their own as alternatives. The US had changed the colouring to a red background, to match the increasingly common traffic light symbol, with white text that was more visible against it, and added a white border in 1954. The UN followed suit. Europe, and the remaining or recently relinquished English and French African colonies, adapted. There’s still a slight twist: Australia isn’t a signatory to the Vienna Convention. We have, however, used octagonal stop signs since the 1940s. It was a yellow octagon with a black bar across the middle, inscribed in white with “Halt” until 1959, and then “Stop” until the adoption of the red sign in 1964. We probably adopted it because a yellow octagon would be recognizable to American soldiers in the 1940s, and kept it because it was distinctive and safe. And now I have reached my word count, a sign that I too should stop.


Pedestrian Crossing Sarah Yeung It looks like we are going the same way for the time being. Slow steps pause – We are loose in the rhythmic flow of electric beetles glittering in the summer afternoon. Funny how small the difference that unites and unties, isn’t it? The green man acquiesces – With a half touch of arms the parting is always awkward, contouring uneven roadways. To think how much we suffer; we say things we don’t mean and mean things we don’t say.


My Mother’s Shoes Ruth Thomas My mother had a pair of black velvet shoes that she would wear on special occasions. I loved that they had straps that crossed over and over. I loved that the heel was insanely high. I liked trying to walk in them. In the mornings, in the evenings, whenever she was getting ready to go out I would tell her that she should wear them. Sometimes she did. They were beautiful shoes, but I think I loved them more than she did. Maybe that’s because my mother was a woman of the 80s and embraced colour and pattern – a zebra print jumpsuit, a full length denim skirt, and power shoulders on every coat. At some point in the 90s things changed and I started to resent her sartorial choices, or maybe I just started to resent her. I think I wanted her to be some kind of blonde American mom who smiled and wore thick white turtlenecks and chinos. I think I wanted to live that dream, live without the confusion of her race and our financial reality. I think I believed too much of what I saw on TV. The thing is, she would wear those clothes but she never looked like that kind of woman, she just looked like her normal no-nonsense self, but then she was never about imitating someone else. It’s a strange moment when you realise that inspite of the promises you scrawled again and again in your teenage diary that you have become your mother, and it’s a stranger moment still when you realise that you want to be her. Maybe there’s a perspective that comes with outgrowing your teenage self that softens you, and lets you see people as people, and not just a function in relation to you. Once I started to feel the scope of her world, that’s when I wanted to be her. She’s fearless and kind and self-reliant, and I see that in her power pant suits and pillowy jumpers. All these things I steal from her. I could not call these appropriated pieces ‘vintage’ - I know all of their stories and they are far too real for that, and as I sweat through the polyester I feel their protective power. It’s the reassurance that I felt in pre-primary, as she dropped me off at the gate with a hug and kiss - it’s a constant love that shines through. Her clothes have become my armour against life. In her clothes I can be that strong boss woman who doesn’t fuck around, and it’s easy to be like that, because she’s always like that, and now that attitude seems to fit.


Garage Sale Whilst the social and environmental impact of hyper consumption are irreversible, we can change our consumption patterns to suit a moral code. Second-hand clothing is one way, it makes use of what is already here. We invited students to bring in their favourite pieces of second-hand or vintage clothing and to discuss the significance it has.

Luce Nicholls I bought this jacket from an op-shop on the Lower East Side of New York, and that’s fantastic, because when people say ‘hey nice jacket,’ I can say ‘thank you, I bought it from an op shop on the Lower East Side of New York’ and that makes me sound arty and accomplished. It was sold to me by an older woman who talked to my dad about how Bill Clinton is the devil. It was $20 USD (which exchanges to about 700 Australian Dollars) plus tax.

Nick Morlet I like this cardigan because it holds a lot of sentimentality. I was in London for a week in early 2012, and we took a day trip to Greenwich. I found this at a vintage place on the foreshore. I knew at that time that it was the first cool item I had ever bought, amongst the first at all I’d bought myself. (It) is a figurant of burgeoning ego and innocent expression to see it folded flatly is a service of such comfort.

Patrick Leclezio I got this dress from a Cottesloe Garage Sale. The girl I bought it from was very stylish, she was an architect and her whole display was /so/ aesthetic that I couldn’t resist buying something. I never buy nice clothes secondhand, I just usually get verge collection or those $1 pieces from garage sales.


Skye Newton I wear a lot of men’s clothing. Someone recently mistook me for my mother’s son. My mother does not have a son at all. Both the shirt and shorts are from an op-shop in Geraldton, the shorts are my prize possession. The tag says casual pants, even though they have ironed in pleats. The shirt is the creamed can crop of my men’s shirt collection. The shoes can be considered second hand because they belong to my sister. If we avert gazes, it’s almost as if they are mine. We have not spoken in ten years.

Charlie Viska I purchased my black cord bomber jacket from a recycled clothes store in Melbourne a couple of years ago. It’s one of my favourites because it’s really comfortable and feels like a hug. There’s not really any specific experience that stands out for me in this jacket, as I do like to wear it a lot. I got offered $60 for someone to buy it off me if that counts though.

Bryce Newton I found this dress (with my eyes) in a Northbridge shop window. I tried it on in summer with the watery output of a dripping aircon puddling in my change room. I only wear it in hot weather, and each time it is like carrying a large swathe of unventilated material on my person.


The Art of Lynton Crosby Ian Tan An ‘evil genius’ who is a ‘master of the dark arts’, political strategist Sir Lynton Crosby possesses what is arguably the sharpest political mind in centre-right politics. Born in a rural South Australian town to farming parents, the once failed Liberal candidate was the mastermind behind election victories for John Howard and David Cameron, and convincing Londoners to vote – not once, but twice – for Boris Johnson. A Crosby campaign is an art in itself, whose questionable tactics often deliver victory. His philosophy is simple. In a rare YouTube video of Crosby delivering a campaign masterclass to British charity, Patchwork Foundation, he states that “at its absolute simplest, a campaign is simply finding out who will decide the outcome… where are they, what matters to them, and how do you reach them.” With a strategy of identifying key target (often marginal) seats and segmenting voters into specific micro-groups, Crosby, then Federal Director of the Liberal Party, was widely credited with returning John Howard as Prime Minister in the 1998 Federal Election despite losing the popular vote. In 2002, Crosby recalled that seeing the exit polls made “his stomach sink like no other moment” in his then 28 year career in politics. It was this strategy of minimising the swings in marginal seats that delivered victory. This same strategy has been replicated, including in the 2015 British General Election, and often with great success. After winning the London Mayorship twice in 2008 and 2012, Johnson is effused with praise for his campaign manager, declaring Crosby to be “the best campaign manager… ever”. Coincidentally, it was also Johnson, as only he does, who let slip of Crosby’s ‘Dead Cat’ manoeuvre whilst railing against the European Union in a column for the UK’s Daily Telegraph. Again, the principle of the dead cat manoeuvre is simple. When in a sticky situation, throw a dead cat on the table because, according to Johnson’s “Australian friend”, the discussion will turn towards the dead cat as it will be “the thing you want them to talk about, and they will not be talking about the issue that has been causing you so much grief.” It was Crosby who turned the tables on Ed Miliband, during the last British General Election, by throwing a dead cat on the table. 10 days into the election and with the consequences of the Conservatives’ austerity programme gaining traction, the Defence Secretary, Sir Michael Fallon, warned that Miliband would “stab Britain in the back” over its nuclear defence system in the same way he backstabbed his brother to gain the leadership of the Labour Party. The expressionless Fallon was the ideal choice, as Crosby has warned that any negative attacks must be clear and contrasting and cannot be hysterical or personal. In this case, it worked as focus immediately switched to Miliband. Perhaps the dirtiest and most controversial tactic of a classic Crosby campaign is its dog-whistling tactic. Resigning as Federal Director of the Liberal Party in 2002, Crosby formed his own consulting firm which was a key adviser to the Conservatives’ Zac Goldsmith’s bid for London Mayor last year. It would be a campaign tainted by accusations of dog-whistling and racist, divisive politics. Often used in the context of immigration and religion, dog-whistling involves the use of language that have two interpretations - one for the general public and another for a specific targeted group, demographic or race as part of Crosby’s signature segmentation of voters. In the biggest example, among others, the Goldsmith campaign had tried to link Labour’s Sadiq Khan, to a radical Islamic cleric and Islamic extremism by association as a result of Khan’s Muslim faith and once sharing a stage with that cleric in an attempt to energise the Conservative base. Dogwhistling, if done right, should be subtle and hard to identify. Crosby, not directly involved with Goldsmith’s campaign, has become the master of dog-whistling with examples ranging from Stephen Harper’s “old-stock Canadians” comment to Howard’s “we will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come.” Dog-whistling often drives division in communities with an ‘us versus them’ mentality. Slammed by Miliband as “gutter politics”, it would later emerge that Goldsmith was also pictured with the same cleric, and would go on to lose to Khan. At the end of the day, elections are won or lost in the backroom and leaders serve as puppets of their campaign managers. For Crosby, he has mastered the art of election campaigns. More often than not, he wins. But in the end, it will be the enticement of power who will beat even the most moral and principled leader into line. After all, as Machiavelli said, maybe the end does justify the means.


Trans-Pacific Partnership Emi Paige The Trans-Pacific Partnership [TPP] was supposed to be a multilateral foreign trade agreement between twelve countries: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam. In October 2015, the participating nations signed up for different sections of the agreement, but it is yet to be ratified by any national government. The involved nations make up approximately forty percent of the global economy, and the deal was valued at approximately $223 billion. The idea of the TPP sounds great. Restructuring the current trade architecture of the Asia-Pacific region to remove the plethora of bilateral trade agreements, increasing economic growth by promoting cheaper trade with lower tariffs and access to markets usually blocked by protectionism (I see you, highly regulated Canadian milk market). It was the gradual creation of a single market – maybe even resembling a more stable EU. Generally, the World Trade Organization [WTO] regulates international trade, but lately has not done a particularly good job. Numerous areas requiring legislation – the environment, investment, and intellectual property rights – are not covered by the WTO. A desire to regulate these issues was one of the original drivers of the TPP. A second reason was to rectify the “noodle bowl” crisis – a series of crisscrossing and confusing country-specific bilateral trade agreements. It often led to larger nations taking advantage of smaller economies desperate to start trading internationally. The sheer economic size of the TPP would unify international approaches to trade by linking the Asia Pacific region into a single mega-regional trade agreement. Debate around the TPP isn’t new. What is new is the fact that Trump has signed an executive order to formally withdraw the US from the agreement. This was nothing more than a formality, as there has been little faith in the ability of the US Congress to approve the TPP since day one. In an interesting turn of events, both Prime Ministers Malcolm Turnbull and Shinzo Abe have remained committed to the TPP. It is unlikely that they will want the years of negotiation and spent political capital to go to waste, but without the US at the negotiation table it may be dead in the water. An alternative has been proposed by China and is under negotiation – the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership [RCEP]. This agreement is between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations [ASEAN], member states including Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Other members would include ASEAN’s free trade agreement partners such as Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, and the key driver of the agreement – China. RCEP was launched in late 2012 and negotiations began in early 2013. Combined, the member nations account for approximately one third of the world’s GDP, slightly less than the promised value of the TPP. Like the TPP, RCEP could act as a solution to the “noodle bowl” crisis by reducing the number of bilateral trade agreements, and has a clear goal of reducing tariffs for all members by 90% over the next decade. What happens next is up to the governments of China, the US and Australia. China is likely to continue to promote RCEP. Along with its inevitable slowdown comes an increased need for the Chinese Communist Party to prove it can function in the international sphere, economically and socially. The US has had a rapid shift in direction. Whilst Congress’s want to ratify the TPP was uncertain, Trump’s shift away from the TPP may not have the effect he desires. His overall goal of promoting economic growth contrasts directly with the idea of bringing manufacturing jobs back to the US. It is highly unlikely that the US will ever go back to being a manufacturing-based economy again. Trump needs to understand this. He has missed out on huge economic gains the TPP would have brought. He should focus on building relations with the Asia-Pacific, not building trade barriers. With elected government officials and trade agreements the way they are at the moment, it is unlikely that US-Chinese relations will warm in the near future That does not mean that Australia should not further develop our own ties to China. As our largest and most crucial trading partner we need to create a strong cultural and social relationship with China to protect our economies future. To be honest, many of the concerns around the TPP were due to fear around the likelihood of the US forcing its own agenda onto smaller nations. Concerns that China was being left out and that Australia joining the TPP would further alienate our social relationship with China are no longer relevant. Perhaps China could even take over America’s place in the TPP agreement as the key major economic power. Another alternative is that the TPP can go ahead with just eleven countries left, or maybe the RCEP will be the more popular choice. On the international stage, many options are available. What will happen in the future remains to be seen. Personally, I would prefer if the TPP could be ratified without the involvement of the US to prove that they are not the major power on the international stage that they used to be. If RCEP could also be ratified, Australia would reap huge economic benefits from both agreements, as well as stronger relationships with our neighbours. It may seem indecisive, but Australia’s best move is to continue supporting both agreements.



Anti Protest

Emma Norton

Kelly Dunn

Before Trump’s inauguration, earth-shattering protests in the West were thought to be a thing of the past, relegated to the annals of 20th century history. But the last five weeks have rendered this assumption ridiculous – every morning we wake up to news stories that confirm the opposite: the women’s and immigrant rallies and strikes, high school walkouts, student protests, as well as thousands disrupting congressional town hall meetings in every corner of the country. The question on many people’s lips, however, is ‘what will these protests achieve?’ Taking a cursory glance at what they’ve already affected can shed some light on the answer: Trump’s Muslim Ban has become a dead letter due to the enormous protests which shut down airports across the country, after which a number of judges issued stays on his executive order.

Protesting in First World countries has become so common that their effectiveness has significantly dwindled. Even when a protest is made a media spectacle it no doubt fizzles out within a few weeks. They have become so trivial that it is very easy for the public to overlook new causes, making them redundant. Originally protests were in the form of strikes, this worked because they interfered with the economy and this forced those targeted to take notice. As protests now tend not to be from any specific industry there isn’t much motivation to take them seriously (unless it’s coming up to an election and political parties are scrambling for votes). There is a very good reason protesters are hardly listened to. Although you may personally support one cause, it is highly unlikely that you agree with every protest group, as many contradict each other. On controversial issues, such as abortion, there are usually protest groups on both sides and the outcome is dependent on the views of the elected government, not who makes the most banners. In a democracy, not everyone will be satisfied with the way the country is run because you simply can’t please everyone. Protests are usually run by a minority group and although sometimes they can have important issues to bring up, they could just as easily be pushing for things the majority are against. Imagine the mayhem if every protest group got their way, our legal system would be constantly flipping back and forth.

It is the mass protests, the disruptions to everyday life, the strikes and promise of more strikes that have forced even Republican congressmen, judges and generals to conscience impeaching Trump or disobeying his executive orders. They fear mass protests, and the chaos they induce, far more than Trump’s overreaching policies. Let’s not forget that virtually every politician, judge and general; the Wall Street bankers and capitalists, would have been happy to see business continue as usual after Trump’s election. They cautioned the population to ‘give Trump a chance’, and weren’t altogether unhappy with a series of his pro-business proposals, including tax cuts to the rich, increased military spending, and cuts to social services. Strikes, which would represent a serious escalation of the movement, have the capacity to destroy Trump’s agenda altogether. Nothing gets done in society without workers carrying it out: have fun trying to build a wall, create a ‘Muslim registry’, deport immigrants, outlaw abortions, or overhaul the healthcare system when working people refuse to carry out these measures. Moreover, the Trump administration could face the prospect of annihilation if millions of workers acted to bring the economy to a grinding halt through general strikes.

Recently in the US anti-Trump protests have even turned violent with businesses and random citizens’ vehicles being vandalised. When protesters turn violent they tarnish their own cause by being written off as extremists and criminals. They are more likely to lead to injured civilians, damaged property and wasted money on extensive law enforcement then actually create change. A similar issue occurs when protesters act out in ways in which the public deem inappropriate or extreme, such as gluing yourself to Parliament House or setting your arm in cement. These sorts of actions lead onlookers to dismiss the cause as the supporters appear irrational.

But mass protest have a significance beyond this. In normal life, ordinary people are systematically denied the ability to shape society or have our voices heard. There is no real discussion while the media is controlled by a minority at the top. And there is no real democracy while almost every decision about society is made by unelected bureaucrats and capitalists (the Fair Work decision to slash penalty rates in Australia is a case in point). Mass protests, even if they immediately ‘achieve nothing’; give confidence to the millions who want real change. They allow us to organise ourselves for future action, and to debate and discuss ideas which challenge the system. They prove to masses of disaffected people, who might otherwise have felt atomized, isolated and powerless, that there are other millions like them who want to fight for a better world. That is a powerful thing, and it might be the first step in actually doing so.

Protesting, in this day and age, is basically just a way of publicly complaining and this alone does not enact change. Nothing can be fixed until there is a viable solution, simply complaining about it does not solve anything. A more successful way to enact change would be to create a better alternative and work with the right people to implement it. If you want to really make a difference, find a job in that industry, make or join a political party or start up an organisation that can actually do something about it. Create an answer instead of a complaint and people will be more willing to listen. Working within the systems you wish to change, such as the government, and using platforms like social media is a more likely way to be noticed than standing in the streets waving around a piece of paper.


Fake News Leah Roberts “The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!” When I first read that tweet I have to admit I reread it a couple of times. Within days my social media was flooded with news stories about “#fakenews” It got me thinking, why haven’t I seen this concept before? We have all seen politicians criticize the media. Equally we’ve all seen politicians try and make friends with media giants, *cough* *cough* Tony Abbott… Rupert Murdoch…Trump’s criticism of the media, well I think that is something different altogether. Fake news, simply, is when an outlet publishes misinformation or hoaxes as real news in an attempt to mislead. Fake news is a serious issue, that much is undeniable. The public relies on the media for information from politics to the daily weather report. It’s essential that the media reports the facts. News outlets aren’t always the best at providing news that isn’t exaggerated, many outlets sensationalizing to garner attention. This however, isn’t what Trump is talking about. He is talking about news that he disagrees with. That is the scariest thing because his supporters will believe anything he says, thus they will stop listening to news which reports negative facts about Trump. What is fascinating but also worrying is how the term “fake news” is being used in such an offhand way. You see it now on Facebook posts, often from Trump supporters. The media in America are not being overly critical. The core of many articles is based around Trumps quotes, tweets or actions. Journalists have admitted just how hard it is to write about Trump because they are never sure what he really means. In my opinion I found that before the November election the bias in the media was obvious. Nowadays I feel like the tone of the articles have changed to that of shock and disbelief. In writing this article a new development has occurred. Press conferences in the White House traditionally allow the media to talk to political officials or the president (after the official conference) off camera. Despite White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s explicit statements regarding press freedom: that only “dictators” restrict media, within a month of Trumps presidency that policy has drastically changed. News outlets including CNN, BBC, The New York Times, LA Times, New York Daily News, BuzzFeed, Guardian, and the Daily Mail have been banned from those “chats”. Now why are these outlets banned? These are the news outlets that have been known to be critical of Trump’s Administration and are investigating any possible links between Trump and Russia (now that’s another article). Trump accused the Washington Press of fabricating the story which alleged that his former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn had been in talks with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak on lifting US sanctions on Russia. Flynn later resigned under the heat of these revelations. These talks were potentially illegal under the 1799 Logan Act, however Trump deemed the reportage of this event “fake news”. Nine independent sources confirmed that this event between Flynn and the ambassador did occur. It doesn’t sound fake to me. Additionally, it is unlikely that Flynn would have resigned if he had in fact not done wrong. It’s hard to sum up this topic as it is ever changing. I hope the media continues to investigate and report all the facts – good, bad, and indifferent about Trump. Freedom of the press is vital to democracy, and any attempt to subvert that is damaging to national integrity.


Presidential Address Nevin Jayawardena Hello my friends, I’ve been quite busy over the past couple of weeks (all of my term actually, as you’d hope) – with Orientation, Conferences, meetings, and getting some new initiatives off the ground this year. A lot of new things will be rolling out so keep an eye on this space as well as my nicely personalised Guild Weeklies for more info ;) Top Tip for this month – Get Involved. It’s the first few months of Uni, you have a little spare time on your hands and if you haven’t already immersed yourself in clubs, volunteering or some other extra-curricular activity, STOP what you’re doing and get planning now. You will learn some very valuable skills, develop important networks, make close friends (maybe even more than friends), and hopefully make a valuable contribution back to the community. I will be saying this every month – but again, The UWA Student Guild is your voice and is here to serve you, so if you have any feedback, issues, ideas, concerns, or anything else, please let me know and I’d be happy to talk to you about it! Hugs and kisses, Nevin.

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It’s time for a change // What Labor promises, Labor will do // Keep Australia on the march // Australia unlimited // Build for tomorrow // Labor puts people first // Secure your tomorrow today // Time for action // Let’s get on with the job // Vote ALP and end conscription // Keep Australia secure and prosperous - play it safe // What price freedom? // Progressive, responsible government // Join the swing to Labor // Labor. Where the action is // Not yet // It’s Time // Right today. Right for your future // Think again // Go ahead // Give Australia the go-ahead // Whitlam: He’s so much better // Turn on the lights // Shame Fraser, shame // Advance Australia fair // Liberal. Doing the job // Get Australia working // Uranium. Play it safe // Lead on, Liberal // Raise the standard // We’re not waiting for the world // Bob Hawke. Bringing Australia together // Stand up for your family. Vote Liberal // Put Australia first // Get in front again // Let’s stick together. Let’s see it through // Incentivation // The answer is Liberal // Bob Hawke for Australia’s future // Labor’s got to go // Australia deserves better // We can do it... together // Tell Labor it’s not good enough // Leadership // For all of us // Don’t go back to Labor. Australia can’t afford it // Australia deserves better // Keep Australia in safe hands’ ‘For a stronger Australia // A safe and secure future for all Australians // Keep Australia in safe hands // A secure future for all Australians // Heading in the right direction // That’s what I stand for // The Howard Government delivers // Opportunity for all Australians // Protecting, securing, building Australia’s Future // If you can’t run a council, how can you run the country? // Don’t take the risk // Latham will squeeze the fees // Mark Latham and Labor. Taking the pressure off families // Ease the squeeze // Don’t risk Labor // Kevin ‘07 // Go for growth // New Leadership // Stop the boats // Together: Let’s Move Australia Forward // Stand up for real action // Our action contract // We can’t afford more Labor // End the waste // pay back the debt, stop the big new taxes, stop the boats // Choose Real Change // A New Way // A stronger Australia, A better future // We’ll put people first // Jobs and Growth



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Join today* or 1800 864 864 UniBank is a division of Teachers Mutual Bank Limited *Membership eligibility applies to join the Bank. Membership is open to citizens or permanent residents of Australia who are current or retired employees, students and graduates of Australian Universities, or family members of existing members of the Bank. ^Win $15K toward your degree offer. Terms and conditions apply and are available online at or from any of our branch offices. The promotion commences at 9:00am WST Monday 30 January 2017 and closes 4:00pm WST Friday 2 June 2017 (“The Promotional Period”). Entrants are eligible to win the prize if during the Promotional Period they; a) are a current full-time student at an Australian university or other tertiary education institution in Australia, b) are aged 18 years or older, and c) become a new member or customer of the Bank. Authorised under NSW Permit No. LTPS/17/10553, ACT Permit No. TP 17/00008, SA Permit No. T17/9. Teachers Mutual Bank Limited ABN 30 087 650 459 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 238981 | 00955P-MAR-UB-0117-Win15K-A4 48

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