Monday, May 14, 2007

Blaze of Glory

This is the shopping centre where I buy my lunch most days... or used to.

I don't understand the thought processes here:

Step 1: "I think I'll rob a carpet shop today. Carpet shops are loaded with fat cash, so I'm gonna get me some of that."

Step 2: "Hmm, there doesn't seem to be any fat cash in this here carpet shop. I think I will just steal a purse and a cellphone, then I'll firebomb the place."

See what I mean? That just doesn't work.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Stippers for the children

While I applaud this guy's open-mindedness, I have to point out his foolishness in not being more selective in deciding which of his son's friends were invited.

The only reason we know about the party is that obviously one of those boys was a tattle-tale and ran home blabbing the whole story to mommy. Dumbass.

As a parent, I feel he has every right to hire strippers (plural!) for his son's birthday if he so chooses, as well as encouraging his child to consume alcohol. I think he crossed the line when included other people's children in the event as well, without first obtaining the consent of those parents... he obviously had no right to do so.

The really big thing that prevents this guy from becoming a shining beacon of hope for those of us who wish to oppose the nanny state from dictating how we live our lives is the alledged illegal posession of explosives in his home. I don't care what they were for, but if someone's got some bombs stashed, he should be fined a little more than R2000.

P.S. Before anyone starts accusing me of being a Libertarian or an Anarchist: I don't really oppose the notion of a nanny state, just the notion of an ill-advised one.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Jan Smuts

Jan Smuts - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

What in the name of Apollo's favourite shoes is this?

It comes as no surprise to me that my Apartheid-era history education was incomplete (thanks to a policy that decreed anything that happened after 1900 was not "history" but rather "politics"), but I had no idea how much salient information had been omitted!

As far as I knew, Jan Smuts was a commando leader for the Transvaal who faught in the second Anglo-Boer War. End of story.

Well it turns out he did a little more than that.

He went on to become the Prime Minister of the South African Union... twice! While in office he opposed Apartheid! Opposed it! And he only failed to have it abolished because he was elected out of office at the crucial time! (There's a story about how he and Ghandi had a great mutual respect for one anonther)

He then went into what was apparently retirement, when he served the British military in both World Wars, got promoted to the rank of Field Marshal (the highest rank in the British military), served on Winston Churchill's War Cabinet, faught the Germans on two ends of the African continent, was instrumental in founding the Royal Air Force, designed and chartered the League of Nations (!) and went on to be the only person to sign both the League's charter and that of its successor, the United Nations!

What the hell! How is it possible that this information was never presented to me?

And what really ticks me off about all this is that the airport, South Africa's biggest, which was so appropriately named after him, considering that he was instrumental in the aviation history of the world, had his named wiped off it and was then given to some other guy!

I don't want to say anything bad about Oliver Tambo... I'm sure he was an influencial man and a valuable asset to the cause. But Jan Smuts was fighting for the very same cause when Tambo was still strapped to his mother's back! And then he went on to shape the political landscape of the world as we know it!

By the gods! What the hell are these people thinking!?!?!

Friday, May 04, 2007

IOL: Media hampering effort to fight porn - MP

IOL: Media hampering effort to fight porn - MP

The next episode in this saga has scared the Jeepers outta me.

Pay special attention to this:

The amendments could also rule out live broadcasts as all material would need to
be submitted to the board.

WTF? Does this sound to you like it does to me? That the Film and Publications Board wants to install itself as a permanent censorship board whose function it is to review any and all broadcasts before they go out.

The government deciding what we get to watch. Hmm. Does that sound right? Doesn't that have a distrubingly familiar ring to it? *cough**apartheid**cough*

So, just to be certain, I downloaded myself a copy of the bill from

There are some pretty ridiculous statements in the bill implying an intent by the board to prevent minors from accessing porn via the Internet or cellphones. Um... right. Legislated Internet restrictions are "about as useful as a cock-flavoured lollypop".

But on to the larger issue.

It does indeed seem to imply that any and all films, interactive video games and publications would have to be submitted to the FPB for approval before they could be distributed "regardless of the means of that distribution".

Now I can see how it could be argued that this is a reasonable step when it comes to the sale of such materials so as to ensure that the proper consumer awareness regarding potentially "harmful" contents is created. Sure thing. But if you consider any filmed material as being subject to that, it does indeed imply that all such material is subject to it... including the news.

Now, while the objectives of this amendment seem to be genuinely benevolent, if misguided, the precedent that it would set is a dangerous one. As soon as it's okay for all material to be screened before being exposed to the public, it's possible for a person or group with a particular agenda to use that screening process to force their own views down the throats of the general public.

As if it's not bad enough that our principle multi-lingual TV news source is partially owned and operated by the government, this amendment would provide the ruling regime with the opportunity to impose their censorship on the "indepentant" news sources as well.

A frightening, and surely illegal, prospect if I ever heard one.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

IOL: Group welcomes tighter pornography laws

IOL: Group welcomes tighter pornography laws

It doesn't surprise me one bit that the "group" mentioned above is the Christian Action Network.

They're a local group (which may or may not be affiliated to the CAN based in America) opposed to abortion, pornography, homosexuality and just about everything you would expect a group with that name to be opposed to.

Lack of evidence has never stopped any Fxian from pushing his own agenda, but I fear that these idiots and their compatriots carry far too much favour with the current regime.

I'm not saying that K-TV should start showing episodes of the Red Shoe Diaries after Ninja Turtles on a Saturday morning, but I am saying that having been a teenage boy once myself, if kids want porn, they will get it.

I realise that the current laws are in place to protect children from sexual exploitation... and I'm totally on board with that. But banning porn altogether won't stem that tide any further. In fact, I believe the opposite to be the case.

Rather let folks who are so inclined indulge in some porn when they need to, than force them to repress their sexualities to the point where it becomes a serious problem and results in the victimisation of innocents.

Sure, keep the hard-core stuff off TV. I would hardly call etv's Saturday night offering "porn", but since there aren't many non-pay channels to choose from I can understand why some folks would be so opposed to it being there.

On the other hand, when it comes to the soft-core porn on etv, I don't see any harm there either. Small kids who have no interest in sex should be in bed, asleep, that late at night. If your five-year-old is watching TV with you at midnight, there's something not quite right there. The material is so mild that teenagers who are interested in seeing it and are crafty enough to program the PVR to record it without getting caught by their parents aren't going to be harmed at all by that sort of thing either.

In other words, the only people being harmed by it are the fundamentalist Christians and their ilk who have nothing better to do on a Saturday night than channel-surf. And how should they fix it? They should write to Rhema-Man and ask him to broadcast his stupid TV station 24-hours a day... he certainly gets paid enough for it.