Saturday, July 31, 2004

hoyt axton

Flop Eared Mule has mentioned Tom Russell Indians Cowboys Horses Dogs (Hightone Records) several times now. Amanda's latest review has convinced me to get the album.

Its great to see her mention picking up a cheap CD of of Hoyt Axton.

Composer of Heartbreak Hotel with composer of Joy to The World

On first hearing Steppenwolf I was smitten and I think I first saw the name Hoyt Axton on a 4 track Steppenwolf EP with “Pusherman” (Axton) "Sookie Sookie" (Steve Cropper and Don Covay) and two other tracks, one of which I assume was “Born to Be Wild” . I have no idea of the other track just now. (I still have the EP but its "packed away").

When I saw the writer as Hoyt Axton I was sure it was one of those made up names like Nanker Phelge. At some stage in my hep cat geekery it occurred to me that that Axton might be related to the composer of Heartbreak Hotel also called Axton.

One of my many joyous discoveries was to find that Hoyt Axton was real and it was his mum who wrote that most radical pop song of all time Heartbreak Hotel. The story goes that Tommy Durden wrote the lyrics as a ballad but then Mae Axton wrote the music with Elvis in mind.

Hoyt wrote huge hits in Greenback Dollar taken to No1 by The Kingston Trio (who also recorded Blowin' in The Wind) and Joy To The World also taken to No1 by Three Dog Night. For a long time my favourite album of his was Less Than The Song from around 1973. There wouldnt be many people of a certain age who couldn't remember and sing along with Greenback Dollar and Joy to the World.

Now, as is common after reading Flop Eared Mule, I have many things to do:

Buy the Tom Russell CD
Get out the Steppenwolf EP and whack it in the jukebox
Slap the Hoyt Axton LP on the turntable
Listen to Elvis doing Heartbreak Hotel yet again and marvel

The Axtons - what a great mother and son.

Friday, July 30, 2004

i got george jones on the jukebox and you on my mind...

Amanda over at the country music in Sydney blog Flop Eared Mule highlights a piece by Oz music writer Iain Shedden in praise and defence of country music.

Amanda makes an important point about narrative:

“People laugh, but I like country music for the same reason I like opera. I am a narrative junkie. Classical music I can appreciate, but opera I love and opera is classical music with a story. ......  And the stories trotted out in opera are no less corny than in any twang-soaked tears-in-my-beers number.”
Amanda goes on to make a few more points and take issue with some of Shedden’s sniffier hipster dismissal of some more popular artists such as "overnight success" The Dixie Chicks who first appeared on Prairie Home Companion in 1991. She also neatly corrects him on the Hank wasn’t appreciated line.

Both Shedden and Flop Eared Mule refer to an article on country by Polly Coufus at Real Country blog titled Proud of my country in a down-to-earth way.

Polly is the Editor of X-Press Magazine. Which bills itself as:  Australia's first and largest street press. The magazine is available for FREE at over 1000 outlets throughout WA every Thursday and X-Press has been on WA streets for more than 18 years.

rock 'n' roll robert johnson greil marcus

Irant over at Immanuel Rant takes Greil Marcus to task for the hero worship of Robert Johnson in the quotes I used here a while back.

Irant says:

"... Johnson's music was refinements. Amazing refinements at that but he built on an existing tradition to be sure. In addition, Marcus' comments ultimately denigrate the recordings made in the '60s during the great blues revival. In this age with the technology available at the time some definitive recordings were made. Son House's recording of "Death Letter" in 1964 ranks as one of the greatest blues performances ever. It is not perfunctory. It is not a footnote. It is not a refinement. It is a living, breathing testament to grief and loss. Marcus be damned in his hero worship of Johnson.
As for Johnson being the first rock'n'roller, he wasn't. If Johnson had lived and formed a band he would of been a protean vision of Chicago blues at best (and Chicago blues was heavily dependant on a interesting mix of musicians). Of course that was left up to one McKinley Morganfield a student of both Son House and Johnson to discover the heady brew (and rock'n'roll didn't really get going to it discovered Chicago blues). " [..more..]

It was at the Immanuel page that I discovered this link to a piece about Jimi and Johnson based on Marcus's writings.

Down the bottom, in a footnote, writer Nicholas Taylor makes this interesting statement about Marcus:
(Note: Greil Marcus's writings on the blues and Robert Johnson are a necessity for any lover of blues and rock. In addition to his incisive critical abilities, putting these artists in the grand pantheon of American thinkers along with Emerson, Whitman, Melville, and Twain, his writing matches the music he writes about in its passion and inventiveness. To check out his work, see Mystery Train (New York: Dutton, 1975), and "When You Walk In The Room", in *The Dustbin Of History* (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1996).

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

los lobos - the ride

Do yourself a favour.
 Los Lobos  The Ride is the best of 2004 so far, although I've yet to get my own copy of Dr John's latest  "N'Awlinz: Dis Dat or d'Udda.

For various reasons I was listening to Los Lobos on my Koss TD70 Headphones tonight and its even more alive than listening through the Yamaha NS10's in my office. (You can buy a pair of NS10's on e-bay for usa$690 atm). Plugged into a vintage Luxman R1040 by way of a Pioneer PD 104.

Enough of the audio geeking.
This Los Lobos album gets better each listening. Usually I cringe when I see the addition of famous "guest artists" on an album. However the east angelenos pull it off with a diverse range of talent such as Elvis Costello, Mavis Staples, Bobby Womack, Tom Waits, Rueben Blades and Richard Thompson. It still sounds like a good Los Lobos album despite all these powerful voices, who matched with any other band could have stolen the show by making each song the singer's not the band's and detracting from the Los Lobos feel.

Monday, July 26, 2004

sudan - darfur: another ruwanda

It was about time to do some reading and link gathering on Sudan - Darfur where I fear the Ruwanda we weren't going to let happen again is about to happen again.
However I moused on over to Robert Corr at Kick & Scream and I find he has pulled together a better lot of information, with maps and background, than I could. So my advice is to do what I did and pop over to his site and read about Sudan - Darfur. Thanks Robert.

9-11 commission report

Currently reading: 
The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (also known as the 9-11 Commission).

The whole 7.4mb is available as a .pdf here.      It is also available in smaller sections.

Its a great read and gave me a better insight into al-qida, the USA and what we need to do about the big picture, Wahibists and fundamentalists terrorists.

nowhere woman

Found this at Arts & Letters Daily.

If women want men to do their fair share, they have to insist on it. No use to make other women do the work.... more»

Its a Review by Zelda Bronstein of: Global Woman : Nannies, Maids, and Sex Workers in the New Economy, edited by Arlie Russell Hochschild,and Barbara Ehrenreich.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

not just that clark kiwi lady

"You're an anti-Semite, a racist and a clown".

Now who could have said that? And to whom? A candidate for Blogger comment of the year? Nope.

How about Justice Minister Yosef Lapid and Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom. Both  hurled insults at each other during a June 2004  cabinet meeting, with Lapid calling Shalom an anti-Semite and Shalom calling Lapid a racist. [..more..]

Saturday, July 24, 2004

its all so normal

Ever wondered what happened to Jim Rose and the Circus. Hes retired in  Maui in Hawaii and playing poker. The last ever Jim Rose Circus performance was in New York in December 2002. After that his ever-changing troupe of performers slid silently away:  
“Torture King went off and started another show. It bombed. Lifto and I are still good friends, but I can’t get a hold of him. The Tube is a pharmacist in Seattle and designs furniture. The Enigma is doing tattoo work in some town somewhere in Texas. The Mexican transvestite wrestlers went back to Tijuana and I think they are still wrestling there. And the contortionist is in a rock and roll band somewhere.” [..more..]

comments completely ceased crafting

Haloscan commenting and trackback have been added to this blog on the advice of Chris Sheil as it is  "more user friendly".
Not this user.
Haloscan has disappeared all my comments.

As we all know a blog without comments is like a condom without a filling.  A lot of potential but no substance.
Feel free to re comment.

rock 'n' roll redundo

Chris Sheil successfully pours scorn on the notion that the 5th of July 1954 was the beginning of rock. Given that I am somewhat responsible for triggering his current inspirational rant about the rash of articles about the 50th anniversary of rock and roll I thought that I should add to the general confusion.

In the mass awareness and influence stakes, Stanley Booth, in Rhythm Oil- A Journey Through the Music of the American South, claims that Carl Perkins Blue Suede Shoes, in 1956, was the first record to reach the top of the pop, rhythm and blues, and country charts. Greil Marcus backs him up saying " ..Blue Suede Shoes momentarily suggested that all sectors of American society could sing the same song - suggested it because, for a moment, they did"

Carl Belz, makes the rarely quoted claim that the first rock record in the above mentioned mass stakes is really the Chords original 1954 version of “Sh-Boom” making the top ten of the pop charts, after earlier charting on R&B charts. Belz acknowledges the Crows with “Gee” achieved the same crossover effort a bit earlier but never climbed the heights or reached as far geographically and demographically as the Chords.

As to who started it musically. Marcus clearly believes "a good musical case can be made for Johnson as the first rock n roller". Robert Johnson recorded in 1936 -37. Suggesting that Johnson had put together a band with drums and electric pickup on his guitar just before his death in 1938 Marcus goes on to say that Johnson “ would have been making music recognisable as rock n roll – full blown, not protean rock n roll- at least by 1938.”

Because he is one of my listening favourites and also because of the sax sound and placement I sometimes like to argue that Louis Jordan was the main man. Caldonia was a crossover from No 1 R&B to top ten pop charts in 1945.

The truth is, as Chris Sheil says, that the beginnings are lost in the mists of time. In fact I believe that is really the point of the best of the Greil Marcus writings. That it really is not possible or desirable to pick one beginning. Rock and roll is a convergence of overlapping and crossovers, black, white, creole, country, blues, big band, jump, pop and more. The only ingredient that I can be sure was essential to rock and roll is electricity.

On the other hand – if I can just find that Buddy Bolden recording maybe I’ll be the one to nail it.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

tony abbott - the challenge

Heres a challenge I'll bet Tony Abbott isn't game to take up.

One day when former Australian Union of Students official Julia Gillard is talking in the house I challenge Abbott to walk over and grab her on the arse. Just like he did to Helen Wilson, when she was an Australian Union of Students official, as described in the court case some years ago. Lets see if hes still game. Double dare.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

big breast battalions to beat brigands

Bigger breasts offered as perk to soldiers

NEW YORK (Reuters) -- The U.S. Army has long lured recruits with the slogan "Be All You Can Be," but now soldiers and their families can receive plastic surgery, including breast enlargements, on the taxpayers' dime.

The New Yorker magazine reports in its July 26th edition that members of all four branches of the U.S. military can get face-lifts, breast enlargements, liposuction and nose jobs for free -- something the military says helps surgeons practice their skills.

"Anyone wearing a uniform is eligible," Dr. Bob Lyons, chief of plastic surgery at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio told the magazine, which said soldiers needed the approval of their commanding officers to get the time off.

Between 2000 and 2003, military doctors performed 496 breast enlargements and 1,361 liposuction surgeries on soldiers and their dependents, the magazine said.

The magazine quoted an Army spokeswoman as saying, "the surgeons have to have someone to practice on."

Monday, July 19, 2004


Cooking one of my special winter recipes, baked or roasted capsicums and onions and garlic and olive oil and tomatoe topped with fetta,  I notice, yet again, that the garlic is from China and has gone all soft and squishy. What happened to the good old Australian garlic that stayed sharp and tasty and hard for a long time just like the me? The new bunch in the net bag is SINGLE CLOVE.  WTF? I've never heard of single clove garlic until now. Its like a small shallot and seems firm enough now. But they all do when fresh. I've hung the bag on the hook near the stove and I'll see how it lasts. I might pop over to Anthony's page and ask his opinion.

dating and dancing - objectively

The 70's rock trio Rush are still on the road. Influenced by Ayn Rand they adapted the storyline from Rand's novelette Anthem for the title track on their album 2112. Perhaps this explains Rush's music.
Need to know more about "Prog" rock?   Mike McLatchey has A Guide to the Progressive Rock Genres. That will tell you more than anyone ever wanted to know about genres within genres within a genre. 
This below is enough to make one laugh or at least smirk immaturely.  Capitalists par excellence, the Objectivists didn't secure copyright, one of their holy grails, for Anthem. Consequently it is available freely in full text and as a Palm download on the net. Don't bother. 
"To Whom it May Concern:
The copyright on _Anthem_, by Ayn Rand, was inadvertently not renewed in the United States during her lifetime.  However, _Anthem_ is still protected by the Berne Convention, which protects the work for the life of the author plus seventy-five years internationally.

By its nature the internet is an international medium.  The posting of _Anthem_ on the internet is therefore a violation of copyright, if done without the permission of the Estate.  In accordance with Ayn Rand's express wishes before her death, we cannot grant any such permission.

We would like you to remove this work from your site immediately.

Jenniffer Woodson Estate of Ayn Rand "

ayn rand dating service

At last an online dating service for the intellectually superior, confident, non-altruistic, self interested, self assured, successful, thrusting, rational, wealthy, architects and railroad tycoons. The Altlasphere's  Online dating Service. No mixed economy wusses, skeptical waverers, tax urging collectivists, mystical god believers, Kantian nihilists or those weak of intellect need apply.  A Melbourne meet of online Rand(y) daters will be held next Friday. Come empty handed and take somone elses plate home.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

keith richards short info

After wondering how many honeymoons Keith had I dug up this information. Clears up the birthday /recording / wedding dates too.
Full name: Keith Richards
Birthdate: December 18, 1943 at Dartford, Kent
Parents: Bert, an electrical engineer, Doris
Hair: Black  Eyes: Hazel  Tall: 5'9"
Education: Westhill Infant's School, Wentworth County Primary School, Dartford Grammar School, Sidcup Art School
Wives: Anita Pallenberg, a German actress (common law), and Patti Hansen (married December 18, 1983).
Musical background: Keith had a beautiful soprano voice, good enough to be heard in Westminster Abbey where he appeard in the choir. Little Boy Blue & The Blue Boys. First stage appearance with a country & western band (while in art school)
Activities: Was a childhood friend of Mick Jagger. During Christmas of 1961 he worked 4 days as a postman.


The madness of Bobby Fischer had registered a few years ago when someone told me they had a tape of him on Manila Sports Radio DZSR  playing USA soul and R&B music and spouting forth anti-semetic and conspiracy rants.  This Atlantic Monthly 2002 article spelt it out in gory detail and now local blogger Barista has updated the story with his arrest in Japan.  Barista manages to nicely weave the story in with that of  Charles Jenkins, the 64 year old US Army deserter who lived in North Korea.

things i learnt this week without trying

Pablo Neruda was originally called NeftalĂ­ Ricardo Reyes Basoalto. This will be useful in a trivia competition at my local pub. That is if I had a local pub and if I went to trivia competitions. I'll be ready if it comes up on Tony Delroy's radio quiz. That is if I can ever get through on the phone. I know many Australians who wonder how the same lot of nerds always get through when others have tried for 2 years without ever getting on. This is the real issue that Flint should have been investigating. You can complain to the ABA here.
Series of dotty  quotes from Flint on the Republic issue. "Professor Flint reminded the Australian tourists and enlightened bemused British supporters of how Australia came very close to becoming a 'Cane Toad Republic' and why it was important for ACM to continue its role as an educator and political lobby group to protect our world renown constitutional monarchy" 
Keith Richards marked his 40th birthday in  December  or  October 1983 by marrying model Patti Hansen and spent his honeymoon at Cabo San Lucas Mexico. I have no idea how many honeymoons Keith has had.  At the Finisterra Hotel in his (their?) room he recorded a bunch of Buddy Holly songs.
Tony Abbott is multi talented.  In addition to exiting the seminary early, and being a deadbeat father who impregnated a woman then left her to fend for herself and kid, he is now revealed to be sleazebag arse grabber of females. He doesn't know his ABC.

ABC stands for  "abstinence, be faithful, and use condoms."  ABC is the Ugandan AIDS policy now adopted by the United States and promoted through its foreign aid program, USAID.   It seems Conservative groups such as Focus on the Family have used the case study of Uganda to advocate their single-focused ideology, claiming that it was an increase in abstinence until marriage that accounted for the turnaround in HIV rates.    
Janet Fleischman writes: In the worst-affected regions of sub-Saharan Africa, women and girls account for 58 percent of those living with HIV/AIDS, and girls age 15-19 are infected at rates four to seven times higher than boys, a disparity linked to sexual abuse, coercion, discrimination, and impoverishment.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

digital death rattle

Who can resist a title like this: The Digital Death Rattle of the American Middle Class: A Cautionary Tale. by Dion Dennis.

It's about the twin spectres of increasing University fees and outsourcing / offshoring of knowledge workers.

"....large tuition increases are often bundled with escalations in class size, reduced course availability, and shrinking financial and infrastructural resources. [4] Combined with the concurrent neo-liberal political redefinition of higher education as a private rather than a public good, "sticker shock" one-year increases.."

.."....may well signify that elites are no longer willing to subsidize American public higher education, once they have gained global access, via digital communication networks, to cheap and competent intellectual labor.."
.."...Inexpensive global communication networks, combined with a younger, talented and low-cost global workforce will reduce the demand for native U.S. intellectual labor..."
"...If so, we are witnessing the digital death rattle of the American middle class, and an escalating and intensive restratification of the American class system.
[read more]

Monday, July 12, 2004

britain's top 100 public intellectuals?

The Prospect magazine site invites readers to vote on the top five British public intellectuals.

"The five public intellectuals who receive most votes will be invited to dinner with a cabinet minster and the editor of a national newspaper, and Prospect will report on the conversation."
The lucky reader voters who match the choice of the winners will each receive a copy of Samuel Huntington’s new book, "Who Are We? America’s Great Debate."

I found some small amusement matching the prize title and competition title.

Most of the names were unfamiliar to me. I wondered if they checked .au logins to allow votes. I didn't vote for Germaine Greer. I voted for Seamus Heaney. Adam Phillips because it looked a bit like Philip Adams and Jonathan Sacks because I'd never heard of him

a blot on the landscape - Rorschach

I had a look at the Fin.Review for Andrew Ford's article but it's locked and for subscribers only. bah. But I did notice this excellent article on the chicanery and shonkyness of the Rorschach test is available in full text.

I have no real objection to the use of the Rorschach as a conversation starter in therapy but to utilise it as a scientific test and make statements about a person's personality or character is to start to get into the Scientology realm. Sometimes an inkblot is just an inkblot. Me I prefer The Inkspots anyday.

authenticity in music

Andrew Ford wrote a good piece in Friday's Fin Review, the Centre bit, on Authenticity in Music. As I was reading it I was listening to a new cheapo CD, I have given the partner, of the great Hank Williams.

There is no question Hank is authentic. There is something haunting and uplifting about a voice like that that sounds as if it might be the voice of a 70 year old singing of his imminent demise. But largely its the voice of a 23 - 26 year old singing about his imminent demise. How does one so young sound so wise and soulful and bluesey and sing such a simple universal message that no matter when or where you hear him he reaches the soul.

He was born in 1923 and started with his band The Drifting Cowboys at 14, he had a huge bunch of hit records and died full of whisky, morphine and Vitamin B12 in 1953 "stretched out in the back of that big ole' Cadillac" His final hit was, "I'll Never Get out of This World Alive"

I recommend both Hank Williams and Andrew Ford. Andrew is heard on ABC Radio National at 10 am to 12 on Saturday Mornings - repeated later that night.

Ona sad Saturday night its easy to start singing the Austin Lounge Lizards song " I wanna ride in - the car that Hank died in - I wanna stretch out in the back of that big ole Cadillac"

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Mr (Ian) Hanke the Christmas Poo

Its not my style. I should resist it. Others like Yobbo would do it.

I was listening on radio today and all I could hear was Mr Hankey.
The more I think of it this whole election Latham Howard circus is getting more and more like SouthPark. How appropriate that the chief shit digger should be Mr Hankey the Christmas Poo. For those unsophisticated enough to smirk at this sort of pre pubescent gutter fart humour theres lots more distasteful things like sound files and .gifs about Mr Hankey the Christmas Poo here.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Duffy, Heroin, Radio National

Michael Duffy (I think he's the first of the ABC's right wing Philip Adams) presents Counterpoint, a new commentary program on Radio National, which will examine a range of social, economic and cultural issues in Australian life and challenge assumptions. Mondays at 4:00pm.

No one has mentioned that Duffy's Programme theme is the song "Golden Brown" by The Stranglers. A well known homage to heroin usage.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Kick Out The (strawberry) Jams?

The remaining 3 of The MC5 now touring reveal that far from being driven only by "militant politics, guns, communal living and ten-point manifestos", and Sinclair's White Panthers they were only in it for the fun. Guitarist Wayne Kramer shockingly reveals "what was really going on, certainly it was about sex. That's at the core of much of what rock 'n' roll is, why guys play in bands in the first place."

Well I never.

White Panther Party 10-Point Program
1. Full endorsement and support of Black Panther Party's 10-Point Program
2. Total assault on the culture by any means necessary, including rock n' roll, dope and fucking in the streets.
3. Free exchange of energy and materials -we demand the end of money!
4. Free food, clothes, housing, dope, music, bodies, medical care - everything free for everybody!
5. Free access to information media -free the technology from the greed creeps!
6. Free time and space for all humans -dissolve all unnatural boundaries.
7. Free all schools and all structures from corporate rule - turn the buildings over to the people at once!
8.. Free all prisoners everywhere - they are our brothers.
9. Free all soldiers at once - no more conscripted armies.
10. Free the people from their "leaders" - leaders suck - all power to all the people freedom means free everyone !
--John Sinclair Minister of Information White Panther Party November 1st, 1968

Can a Latham change it's spots

Michelle Grattan in The AGE makes the sensible point that politicians can change their behaviour.

"One precedent often raised is Bob Hawke. Before he became an MP (although he was already in public life), he drank heavily and womanised extensively. He was often not a pretty sight. If he didn't get into physical fights, he was so verbally aggressive that he often looked as though he might.

Yet Hawke put that behind him and was a very good and well-behaved prime minister."

And goes on to suggest that Mark can do it too. I agree. After all Tony Abbott before he was famous was just a smug, arrogant, sanctimonious, jumped up prick. Now Abbott is just a ....

Perhaps Michelle is wrong with some people.

Before Mark settles down there is a lot of people who would like to see him do one last yob act. Just when Abbott is prattling on in parliament one day I'd like to see Mark get up and walk over and snot him one on that smarmy snout. I'm sure a lot of Libs would shift their vote to Latham after that too.

Gram Parsons and Chris Sheil

I just read a bit further back on Sheil's blog. He might be wrong on EC but the kid is alright. He understands Gram Parsons place in the world. I dunno if I'm with him on Keef Richards but Sheil does some nice writing on Gram.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

Eric Clapton and Chris Sheil

Christopher Sheil over at Back Pages in his 2 July 2004 post continues a theme he has developed of boosting Eric Clapton.

I'm well aware of the awe that some ageing rockers hold Clapton but I must say that for me he has never really had anything to say since Cream and then it was a case of the whole being more than the sum of the parts. I dont have any Clapton on CD, only old vinyl, always a good test for me. On the other hand, and who would have predicted it, I have a lot of latter day Jack Bruce on CD. In my view Bruce has progressed and I've not heard anything from Clapton to make me want to go out and buy a CD. I'm still willing to give him a go, after all those old air guitarists might be on to something but somehow I dont think so. Perhaps his new Robert Johnson album might do it. But heck to play Clapton's I Shot De Sherrif alongside Marley's version is to confirm that EC is "just a white boy chained to his headphones"

Oh you asked what am I listening to right now. The Greatest American Band still extant. Los Lobos THE RIDE

Lionel Rose

Adrian over at Man of Lettuce in his blogging of a Sydney Taxi pilot wrote about a sports writer retiring. I dont like sport. But he mentioned Lionel Rose and I did like Lionel.

Heres an expanded version of my comment over at Lettuce:

I'm a person who can't abide by any sport in any fashion. Except I have always followed boxing. Always is a strong word. Theres been nothing to follow in boxing for years. Dont get me going on Mundine (the recent one, not the old fella) or Lester Ellis. I suppose I'd have to give a little bit of praise to Fenech in his low key way. At least he's given me a classic Aussie phrase to use "I luvs youse all".

Johnny Famechon was a better "boxer" by a long shot than Lionel. Theres no question that the lighter the boxer the more "boxing" gets done as an art as opposed to thumping, plodding, holding and just lasting the duration. Excepting Ali. But then hes a one in a million. Famechon is the only World featherweight champion never to have been knocked out. But Lionel captured the hearts.

I'd bumped into him once when he was on the slops with the urgers filling him up and the worst of us australians waiting till he was well and truly falling down pissed to have a go and say they had flattened Lionel the Champ.

Years later I saw him at some Aboriginal Country Music show down at the Espy. His voice was never that great but when he sang "Louise" the Paul Siebel song he stopped me dead in my tracks. I wept. I have heard many great singers do this sad song. But none like that night that Lionel Rose sang it at the Espy. He grabbed it, he took it. He made me know he knew Louise, knew what it was like. His voice might not be Willy Nelson but like Willy he knew how to make a song his own.

My tears were for when he was a hero, when he was down on his luck, on the slops and for him being on the wagon. And for all aboriginals in this land who had to end up like Louise


I reckon with Harradine leaving its now time to get out of Tasmania. The recent Tasmanian boom or turnaround wasn't the result of Jim Bacon's Marxist-Leninist commitment to revolutionary communism but the fact that Harradine managed to squeeze squillions out of the nation's taxpayers tit. Given that he had around 45,000 voters he probably squeezed a few million $ for each voter out of the rest of us. Time to sell that delightful Tasmanian getaway now before the Tassie economy slumps back to its natural low. Have a squiz at Chart 2.1: Economic Performance – Final Demand: Tasmania and Australia 1997 -1999

From the horses mouth:

let me first of all place on record my great admiration and respect for Brian Harradine. I think Brian Harradine has been a wonderful Senator for Tasmania and I really mean that. There are a lot of things that Brian Harradine and I would disagree on but there are a lot of things that we would agree on. And I have found him over the years to be an immensely decent committed person; a very fine Australian and somebody who’s worked very hard for the people of Tasmania who’s shown enormous encourage on issues. There are some pieces of legislation that we would never have been able to get in place at the beginning of our term had it not been for Brian Harradine

Well, in the whole eight and a half years we’ve had special policies to help the people of Tasmania. If you think of the way in which Tasmania’s been generously treated out of the sales of Telstra; think of the subsidies we’ve provided for Bass Strait transport; think of the fact that Tasmania is the only state in Australia which as a state enjoys the $7.50 increase in the Medicare incentive for bulkbilling for children under 16 and cardholders. And if you live in Launceston or Hobart, you get the $7.50. If you live in Sydney or Melbourne, you get $5.00. And yet I heard somebody yesterday say that I hadn’t done anything to help Tasmania.

Friday, July 02, 2004


Albert Langer, Michael Hyde and Kerry Miller have written a collective obit to Jim Bacon in The AGE 2 July 2004. Jesus - if poor old Jim the smoker had really thought what these turgid correct line old style lefties believe he would never have made it to Premier of the Harradine state. I suppose The AGE needs all the readers they can get but is there really more than about 5 old Marxist-Leninists left in Melbourne (or the world for that matter). Sadly its the sort of writing that makes Andrew Bolt look kinda literate. The piece says they have set up a web site but as of tonight they haven't managed to propagate the DNS or they have no content.

Albert of course runs the website I guess I would be corrected and be told that its actually a collective that runs the site. Albert is claimed to be Australia's first political prisoner.

Albert Langer and his fiancee Kerry Miller have a pic archived by Fairfax. The caption: Albert Langer and his fiancee Kerry Miller leave court on Lonsdale St, Melbourne, 1969. SMH NEWS Picture by STAFF Keywords: marxist, socialist, activist, activism. Categories: Crime/Law/Justiceare archived by Fairfax .

Its just above a pic of The Beatles at Festival Hall Melbourne 1964..

I suppose that's real fame.

Scouts - Be Prepared for BBQ

Can't think of anything to blog about so as the usual last refuge of the lazy blogger I post about a "quirky" "zany" news item.
A bunch of scouts in Utah are being sued for $A20M for failing to put out a campfire.