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Midweek Mayhem!

Welcome to Midweek Mayhem!

The place where anything can happen but it generally doesn’t.

There’s a large vacant space in the middle of Hobart where the Myer department store once stood before it was destroyed by fire over a year ago. There have been many suggestions in the daily newspaper as to what should be done with the vacant lot. A number of readers have suggested that it should be made into a public space, with a park, lawns and trees, and seating for people to enjoy eating their lunch. Others have suggested combining the public space with some cafe’s and restaurants with an area for performance artists, musicians and artworks. Many readers have written in to support these ideas, and that’s all well and good you might think.

However, imagine my surprise, when a number of readers took umbrage at my own well-considered suggestions for the space, with one actually asking me to leave town!

I ask you, who in their right mind would argue with the idea that every town ought to have its own dedicated community heroin injecting centre and designated smoking zone?

This is precisely the concept I put forth as a useful way to make use of this wasted space. And what do I get for efforts? Shot down in flames by concerned citizen “irate of Sandy Bay”

I imagined a sort of “festival” like environment, where users could congregate and shuffle from stalls selling everything from gear like tablespoons, aluminium foil and rubber tubing, as well as a needle exchange shop. All in one family-friendly environment.

Dealers could also set up shop, but I would probably restrict this to sensible operating hours like say from 10.00pm until 6.00am in the morning, so as not to interfere with other nearby retail trade. We could even have a “drop in” centre, where people could drop in, to drop out….

Somehow I can’t see it happening. But I reckon the idea has merit. I should’ve been a town planner.

Feel free to talk amongst yourselves…


97 Responses

  1. reb – you are a bad bad man. 😉

  2. Brilliant reb, absolutely brilliant idea. Just think with all the ‘traffic’ in one area the cops can make sure there is no ‘criminal’ behaviour The ACCC could send an agent to ensure there’s no collusion between dealers and Trade Practices Commission could make sure that prices are reasonable. (Would it be possible to have pricing cycles like petrol, say Tuesday cheapest, so that any busts are more expeditious
    And the hours are perfect. Who else other than a druggie would be awake, in Hobart, at those times!
    Talk about thinking outside the square.
    Well done!

  3. Been back in Sydney a week after my minor sojour to FNQ. Stayed a week an hours north of Cairns (Wonga Beach). It’s taken me a while to come back to earth!
    God it was 28-30 degrees, never got out of shorts and t’shirt.
    Last year I committed to walking the beach to the mouth of the Daintree river. But realised preparation was required. So day one 20min, day two30 and day 40. The final assault, day four, took 3 hours return (I reckon 14km)
    Deceptive things beaches!
    And then there were the crocodiles I had to dodge, but that’s another story.

  4. Some kitchen dancing…volume up nice and loud. There are choices we are making, we’re saving our own lives…we’re the ones to make a better day…

  5. Thank you Handyrab!

    I’m glad that someone appreciates my genius.

    I like your price cycle idea – “Supercheap Tuesdays” – Drop in. Sit down. Shoot up!!

  6. Whacked Out Wednesdays
    Freebase Fridays

  7. Sunday smashout?

  8. What about Sassy Sunday..??

  9. I am trying to workout what day would be the “comedown” day….

  10. Thanks for the vid Min. Great song, but why do I feel older and so more helpless
    And for everyones edification We Are the World was written by Lionel Richie and …… guess who..

  11. Sorry TB, everyone’s (note possessive) edification.

  12. Thank you handy..that’s why I posted it. I think that it’s useful to think about where we were and not to give up ever, not to call it quits.

  13. Handy…TB is not in the least bit possessive.

  14. I don’t give a stuff what you do with the vacant lot.

  15. (methinks the duck is quacking up)

  16. Joni, I’ve turned over a new leaf. No more Mr Nice Guy.

  17. OMD – the duck really is Daffy!

  18. Miglo..re turning over a new leaf..you mean that you eventually finished the gardening for Jedda?

  19. Min, everything on the to-do list was ticked off.

  20. But did you do it or just tick it off?

  21. Haven’t been doing much work lately because I hate the cold!

    Heading to the snow at the end of the month because the girls have never seen the snow…I might consider work after we get back as Qld weather will be nothing after a week on the fields.

    I better get out there as I need to raise some serious cash for my next project…where’s those white shoes?

  22. Thanks, Min …

    Just so everyone else understands:

    I don’t give a stuff about f#$@kin’ apostrophes – I have been (note past tense) trying to make a point that it was being pedantic by the originator (you know who you are …)

    I shall now desist – unless pedants get up my nose again!

    …and, Migs, its about time you revealed you reviled visciousness, some of us have noticed it seething within many of your late night posts … the word “pissed” (notice the inverted commas for emphasis – OK I quit) springs to mind …

  23. Whaaat!

    Not working cause its cold going to the snow instead … it must be me …

  24. Ticked ’em all off joni. Only did half the jobs though.

    Off to the golf club now. Have half corona in pocket. I need some time out after all that ticking.

  25. # I better get out there as I need to raise some serious cash for my next project

    The moon needs grass

  26. From our place you can see snow on the Brinabellas some mornings. It makes you feel just that little bit colder than you actually are. Especially when driving to work when it’s already minus 4.

    I hear the golf club calling.

  27. A wonderful evening to all..am on roast pork with apple sauce duties.

  28. The things one does for his family…I don’t like the snow.

    Moon grass…no, that is the project after the next one.

  29. Night Min,
    What will you be delivery this dinner, i’ll wait outside. 😉

  30. oops… what time

  31. Global warming has caused a decline in the flow of water in the world’s major rivers, according to a new report by the American Meteorological Society. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/8011497.stm.

    Rivers in China and India are likely to be seriously affected in coming decades.

  32. Sorry min, I forgot that TB lives in the best state in Queensland.

  33. Time for the cricket, night all.

  34. Go England!

  35. F**k England.

  36. Im selling hotdogs.

  37. English mustard thanks Hexx.

  38. Go England!!!

  39. Come on Aussie.

  40. Go England………

  41. God start that,by the poms.

  42. Yay – back from gym and now for five nights of cricket. Woohoo!

    (poor bf)

  43. Hum D, do all Crow’s supporters follow England?

  44. One down! Whoopee.

  45. Wicket!! Take that, F**king England!

  46. Yes Miglo, it is hardly surprising that a supporter of an artificial football club would provide support for a cricket team that has struggled to even source a captain from its own shores.

    Though Ponting is from Tasmania.

  47. Don’t like the poms Tony?

  48. This match appears to be grinding to a draw!!!!!

  49. Tom, for once I can agree with you. This is a rare moment indeed.

  50. handyrab – that’s an early call!

  51. “Hum D, do all Crow’s supporters follow England”

    It’s definitely more a case of disliking the OZ cricket team than “liking” England.

    I dare say that most Crows supporters are cheesy patriots; I am not one of those.

  52. TIC joni. What about a dedicated thread for each Test M atch so us tragics can get our rocks off (oops showing my age!!)

  53. Yes HD, those fine upstanding English gentlemen are far more worthy of our support.

    All the luminaries Jardine, Greig, Snow, Boycott, Botham, Willis, Pieterson… all so much more respectable and sporting than our own lads.

  54. I’d support anyone (with the likely exception of the USA) against the OZ cricket team Tom.

    As I said, I don’t “like” England any more or less than Abu Dhabi.
    Not “my” lads Tom.

  55. Work, sleep, bed…goodnight.

    I hope that England is 1/500 next time I look at the score & the Australians are all openly fighting with eachother.

  56. I think that is a great idea – HR – I will get a thread up in the morning for the cricket tragics… the John Howard Memorial Cricket Thread.

  57. Cricket thread up now – and they are 2 down.

  58. Three before lunch. F**k you England!

  59. The US State of Massachusetts has filed suit against the Federal Government, contending that the Defense of Marriage Act violates States Rights (which is ironically a favourite trope of the US political right wing, except when it proves inconvenient to their preferred outcomes).

    Meanwhile Washington D.C. now recognizes same-sex marriages that were legally performed in other jurisdictions.

  60. Lotharson, and then we have this happening in our own backyard:

    The National Marriage Day committee, run by the Australian Family Association, is hoping to fill the Great Hall at Parliament House next month for a breakfast marking the fifth anniversary of the 2004 amendment to the Marriage Act under former PM John Howard which redefined marriage as “the union of a man and a woman, to the exclusion of all others”.

    I still cannot work out how allowing gay marriage damages marriage.

  61. …and a decorated former West Point professor and military attorney who is now a US Congressman is gathering sponsors for a bill to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (the legislation that kicks service members out of the US military – not if they are actually gay, but if they become known-to-be-gay).

  62. Meanwhile, the Obama administration, via the DOD, appears to be arguing that it can detain pretty much anyone they like, even if the detainees have been tried and acquitted.

    Needless to say, this is yet another outrage, and this one is certainly worse than Bush.

    Makes me think twice about traveling there for business…

  63. I still cannot work out how allowing gay marriage damages marriage.

    Isn’t it obvious? All those who are freaked out by the damage gay marriage will do to marriage are thinking about their own straight marriages – and how, if gay marriage is allowed, that there will be no sanction in place that will stop them divorcing their unfortunate opposite sex partner and marrying the same-sex partner of their dreams, dreams that could hitherto find no socially acceptable public acceptance; a sad state of affairs that pushed them into a sham straight marriage in the first place

    😉 😉

  64. And US police say that if you’re running away from them, they have “no choice” but to taser you, even if you’re a 14-year old girl. Slowly but surely the “acceptable uses” expand and expand…

  65. Joni at 3.01pm re John Howard’s (quote) 2004 amendment to the Marriage Act under former PM John Howard which redefined marriage as “the union of a man and a woman, to the exclusion of all others”.

    JWH made an error..he said a man and a woman whereas he obviously meant a man or a woman.

  66. All those freaked out by gay marriage are unsure as to what love and commitment is all about.

    Surely people who do not want to marry are a bigger ‘threat’ to the sanctity thingy of marriage than people who do want to marry irrespective of gender/gender of partner.

    The above is just (in my opinion) how silly/ridiculous/sad this argument is.

  67. Agreed, Min. It’s a ridiculous argument which doesn’t stand up to any kind of scrutiny.

    The sad point is that it was never meant to stand up to scrutiny. It is simply a rallying cry for those that wish to express their prejudice against same-sex couples.

    It sounds much better on television when a Christian reverend (or similar) states he is “standing up for the sanctity of marriage” compared to, say, “stomping down on the rights of gay people”.

  68. Doesn’t matter anyway as artificial sperm from stem cells has now been created so men everywhere are superfluous.

    Long live women.

  69. Never!!! Men are needed!! Without men then there would be no one to put one’s cold tootsies on.

  70. Absolutely Min – I can always find a use for a good man.

    And Mobius, one of my mates in the UK commented that he sniggered like a 14yo boy when he heard that scientists had created sperm in a lab… he said, I have done that too!

  71. Joni..I thought that you already had one 🙂

    I honestly didn’t think that sperm were such a scarce resource that scientists needed to create these artificially.

  72. # All those freaked out by gay marriage are unsure as to what love and commitment is all about.

    Its nobodies business and this law has been controlled for far to long.

    Its insecurity of oneself that creates the gay hate.
    underage and force is a concern for all relationships and to bring up animals is a lack of discussion or debate on the issue.

    Just ask a person if they masturbate as a joke and watch them get defencive or embarrassed, Its a wonder that any sexual issues are discussed at all.

    by the way is it spelt defencive or defensive?

  73. Yeah, what is that all about?! I mean, we get ourselves all nice, warm, and comfortable then BAM! our partners stick their cold feet on us… or worse, stick their freezing hands under our shirts for a cuddle.

    I asked my wife once why she did that and her answer was (and I quote) “Because you’re nice and warm!”. You see, I would think that a good reason not to rub my cold hands on her skin! 😛

    …it does make me feel all warm and protective though when she snuggles on the couch while we’re both reading – so I guess I can forgive her.

  74. @Min: Hell, I could always find a use for a good man and I’m married! There is the gardening, rubbish to take to the tip, end of year paperwork, …

    @Hexx: I believe it is the latter… it just looks right compared to the first spelling.

  75. Thanks BT i had a moment where they both looked right.

  76. I think that we’re just about there re gay marriage. We have de facto relationships (state legislation) and marriage (federal), registration of bd&ms (state), Centerlink obligations (federal).

    So due to the changes in Centerlink we now have that gay partnerships are de facto aka ‘a marriage like relationship’.

    Therefore how can people be in ‘a marriage like relationship’ without the right to marry.

  77. So, Ben, you haven’t got to the cold bum stage yet! 😆

  78. Therefore how can people be in ‘a marriage like relationship’ without the right to marry.

    Easily. De facto gives the government something without taking away any significant portion of their “Christian Lobby” support. Now gay couples cannot claim as much welfare or as much on their tax return as they could before.

    The party that first gives single-sex couples the right to marry will suffer from a Christian Lobby backlash. It may not be a swing of 10%, but there are alot of seats on razor-thin margins this time around and neither side wants to risk that.

    Funny thing is, once the right to marry has been given, the Christian Lobby loses it’s influence on the issue. Regardless of how much pressure they bring to bear, no government would roll-back such a basic right once given. The Christian Lobby knows this and so knows it cannot give an inch because they’ll never be able to claw it back.

  79. So, Ben, you haven’t got to the cold bum stage yet!

    Once and only once. I now sleep on my belly!

  80. Ben..I think that it will all be done quietly, quietly..a Rudd thing..there is this anomaly between state and federal legislation and before the religious lobby knows about it, it will be a fact.

    Sad isn’t it, that a small (very) small portion of the Christian lobby has nothing better to think about other than who keeps one’s tootseys warm.

    Fortunately there are Christians with better things to do with their time such as helping the homeless and doing the midnight to 4am soup kitchen rounds.

  81. Ben: Re sleeping on one’s belly..I didn’t realise that with that nose that you would be able to do so 🙂

  82. This High Court decision could have serious ramifications on certain Commonwealth spending programmes.


  83. Now gay couples cannot claim as much welfare or as much on their tax return as they could before.

    That’s exactly right Ben.

    Despite the government’s advertising campaign that ostensibly looks like it wants to recognise gay and straight relationships as being equal (you know – the matching toothbrushes ad), all they really want to do is treat a gay couple as a defacto relationship so that they will be entitled to LESS Centrelink benefits.

    Howabout recognising our “equality” when it comes to things like superannuation? No, the government doesn’t war a bar of that, because that will actually cost them money.

  84. I didn’t realise that with that nose that you would be able to do so

    Special pillows 😉

  85. On the idea of gay marriage coming “quietly, quietly”… I don’t think there isn’t a chance in hell of that occurring sadly.

    There are enough hard-core Christians in parliament (both sides) that anything approaching true equality will be caught well before it could become law. Remember said legislation would have to get past people such as Tony Abbott & Steve Fielding.

    No. I don’t think it’ll get there by the back roads. It’ll need a party with the gumption to stand up to the Christian Lobby and tell them where they can stick their definition of “equality”. Won’t be this government and I don’t think it will be the next.

    The only way it could possible get it without a government having a spine would be for the High Court to somehow judge the changes to the marriage act illegal. Given we don’t have Bill of Rights or similar – I don’t see that happening either.

  86. So Turnbull want Rudd to call the Chinese President to make him release the Australian arrested on espionage. He says that he wants Rudd to:

    get on the phone immediately to the Chinese president and demand that the Australian citizen, Mr Stern Hu, be released and be given access to Australian consular officials.

    Wait a minute – wouldn’t that be a case of Rudd giving favours?

  87. This is true.

    Last night while at the golf club somebody alerted me to the names of the 1st and 2nd horses in a race shown on Sky Racing. The winner was Eeny Meeney. Second was Miney Mo.

  88. joni, on July 9th, 2009 at 3:01 pm Said:

    “I still cannot work out how allowing gay marriage damages marriage.”

    If you ever figure it out, joni let me know. I’ve been trying to understand how the anti-gay marriage brigade arrived at that astonishing conclusion.

    Looks like Malvolio’s shooting himself in the foot again! Is this clown’s brain connected to his mouth? I can’t believe how stupid he is. Definitely not PM material.

  89. Hello Blogocrats, have any of you nice people ever asked Tim to write the odd guest thread?

  90. Wouldn’t Howard’s amendment to The Marriage Act be illegal under sexual discrimination legislation?

  91. I would think so, Min, but I don’t know how the High Court would see that. As I understand it, the government can (and has) exclude certain pieces of legislation from the Discrimination Acts.

    I’m assuming, based on the fact the “indigenous intervention” wasn’t repealed, that this is a legal (if unethical) way to override an adverse decision by the High Court if it got that far.

  92. “The winner was Eeny Meeney. Second was Miney Mo.”

    Clearly you were pissed. Again.

  93. Ben, agreed the indigenous intervention required overriding HREOC and states’ anti-discrimination legislation. Other examples include employment eg Aboriginal background preferable and female preferred (the latter in obvious circumstances).

    I wish that I could find the link, but a couple of weeks ago a journo maybe SMH picked up on this same issue..mentioned but briefly. That is, with the Federal Government acknowledgment of same sex couples as de facto via Centrelink that this conflicted with other federal legislation, the obvious one being Howard’s amendment to The Marriage Act.

    My understanding is that what Howard did was not to exclude same sex couples from marrying (via Federal & states’ anti-discrimination) but reworded the Act to state a man and a woman.

  94. gab

    re: Tim

    I know that he looks in occasionally – and offers some off line advice to me, but I think he is happy where is is at the moment.

    And Tim – I hope the book is coming along nicely.


  95. Who’d have thunk it. The new CIA director confirms that the CIA has misled Congressright up until “late last month”, i.e. until only a few weeks ago.

    Does anyone think Republicans are going to apologise to Nancy Pelosi now?

  96. On the idea of gay marriage undermining marriage somehow, the Massachusetts Attorney General, whose State filed a lawsuit against the US Federal “Defense of Marriage Act”, says:

    Our familes, our communities, and even our economy have seen the many important benefits that have come from recognizing equal marriage rights and, frankly, no downside…

  97. One of the Guantanamo ex-detainees named by the US as a suspected terrorist by virtue of allegedly “having associations with terrorist groups” (in that report a few months ago about those who had “returned to terrorism” or related activities), is openly working with the US-backed Afghan government and its ministers, who say he is no such thing.

    Before he was detained for 6 years, he was known as an anti-Taliban and anti-Al Qaeda commander who supported the government – and this fact was admitted by the US government (point 4 on page 2 of 2). He appears to have been set up by a rival. He said he was prepared to defend himself in a trial but was never given the chance.

    Greenwald points out that throughout much of the period of his detention the US was claiming that only the “worst of the worst” were left in Guantanamo.

    And he points out that if they claim this guy is a terrorist without any such evidence, how can you possibly trust them to lock people up indefinitely because they claim those people are “dangerous”? (Never mind that the idea of locking people up indefinitely merely on government say so – even if they’ve been acquitted in a trial! – is patently offensive to the idea of the rule of law.)

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