Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Toujours a woman of calibre, toujours gai ...

(Above: yes, it's an obvious joke, but when has the pond ever aimed for subtlety or nuance, especially with a .357?)

The pond knows nothing of "women of calibre" of course ...

The pond has always tended to identify with the glorious Mehitabel, instructing Archie the cockroach on the nuances of life:

persian pussy from over the sea
demure and lazy and smug and fat 
none of your ribbons and bells for me 
ours is the zest of the alley cat 
over the roofs from flat to flat 
we prance with capers corybantic 
what though a boost should break a slat 
mehitabel us for the life romantic (the glorious rest here).

Oh yes, that Mehitabel knew a thing or two - she was once Cleopatra you know - and she knew a thing or two about the life of the alley cat, and she knew she could never aspire to the lifestyle of the toffs.

The sort of up-market breeder life, prescribed by Tony Abbott, you know, the one who wants "women of calibre" sent out to pasture and funded on a breeding program.

Was it less than a week ago that the pond read in the Australian Financial Review of a "well-bred" woman, dropped by a filly who'd mated a knight, e'gad?  It's good to know that the breeders of the eastern suburbs still think of the term and the concept as being useful outside of horse and dog racing. Oh she's frightfully well-bred, don't ya know ...

Now it truly astonished the pond when reading Abbott raises hackles with 'women of calibre' remark.

What on earth did people expect from a robust snob and north shore type, dedicated to funding decent breeding, as you'd expect from a scion of the Catholic church?

And you know, to make sure that the breeding is decent, you need to make sure that the wealthier well-bred woman is rewarded for the breeding program, so arduous and difficult for refined types, who'd find it completely impossible to squat and drop an infant in approved indigenous style.

Naturally this position needs defending, so who better to trot out than alleged feminist Eva Cox, who described the response to the Catholic scion's words as an "over reaction". (Feminist lends support to Abbott).

Yes, when it comes to rewarding the well off, the lumpenproletariat and the working class can just take their place in the queue.

You see, keeping the well-off in the style to which they're accustomed, at taxpayer's expense, while making sure minimum wage-earners - the useless bludgers - make do on the base rate is just so fair. And really having a child is exactly like having a case of the flu. Or so the pond is told:

Ms Cox described that as an over reaction. ''Paid parental leave is a salary-related, work-related payment not a welfare payment. I think that's what Tony Abbott was trying to say in a somewhat clumsy way,'' she said. 
''If it's a work-related payment it should be at a salary level. People off with the flu or on holiday are paid at the same rate. Why should a woman having a child be put on the minimum wage?'' 
Ms Cox described Mr Abbott's scheme, which has divided his party room, as ''closer to the feminist angle'' than others.

Indeed. And so Catholicism and feminism came together in a blissful and mutually supportive way, and women taking time off for the flu or a bit of breeding could be assured of the taxpayer's support at the highest level.

In much the same way really when you think about it, education is a bit like a case of the flu, and why should a well-off family busy putting their children through private education have to endure the rough equivalent of a public education on the minimum wage?

Now there's just one further step required, as outlined by a clever gentleman some considerable time ago:

The Weltanschauung which bases the State on the racial idea must finally succeed in bringing about a nobler era, in which men will no longer pay exclusive attention to breeding and rearing pedigree dogs and horses and cats, but will endeavour to improve the breed of the human race itself. That will be an era of silence and renunciation for one class of people, while the others will give their gifts and make their sacrifices joyfully. (the rest at Project Gutenberg if you're game here).

Now don't come around the pond waving Godwin's Law in our face. News Limited officially abolished the law, and the swear jar was flung out in the trash ...

Meanwhile, how pleasing that the Institute of Public Affairs has at last found a natural ally in relation to plain paper cigarette packaging.


As you can read in Cuba seeks to legally challenge Australian plain packaging on tobacco products.

Joining Honduras, the Dominican Republic and the Ukraine.

And the IPA, of course, which has mounted a valiant campaign against plain packaging, as you can discover by doing a key word search of the site.

Valiant comrades in arms. Cuba and the IPA. Oh the pond likes the sound of that. The IPA and Cuba ... we could almost turn it into a song ...

But enough of the jollity, it's time to get down to some hard reading. Does the pond go with Janet "Dame Slap" Albrechtsen, hoeing a familiar field?
Well if you can bother to jump the paywall, and read Why John won't vote labor this time, you will be rewarded by interminable celebrations of the featherweight thinking of Nick Cater, and a hearty dose of irony, including this:

... over more than 20 years, Cater watched the emergence of a cultural divide that now drives Australians apart. "For the first time there are people who did not simply feel better off but better than their fellow Australians."

What, idle chatter about "women of calibre"? But, but, but, billy goat, that's feminist approved ...

Oh but the irony gets richer and richer, especially for those who yabber on about "women of calibre".

... Cater's intellectual curiosity has uncovered the fascinating history of how Labor and its small support base among the Superlatives have lost touch with millions of Australian men and women who subscribe to the front bar spirit of Australian egalitarianism where those who earn an honest day's living earn equal respect and those who tend towards cafe society pretension are first mocked and then duly ignored.

The front bar spirit (actually they're still called public bars in New South Wales but it's hard to imagine Dame Slap in any sort of front or public bar). That's exactly the sort of "women of calibre" spirit the pond admires ...

Naturally there's a lot more, and what would a Dame Slap piece be - a piece of calibre, so to speak - if it didn't take a slap at the ABC?

Pre-cable TV, the cultural fault line ran between the taxpayer-funded Channel 2 on one side of the divide and the commercial cluster of Channels 7, 9 and 10 at the other end. Post-cable TV, while millions of Australians are also surfing Sky News and myriad cable-TV channels, Aunty still represents a secure home where the nation's moral guardians can reliably turn for daily affirmation from a group of like-minded journalists who tend towards the same views on issues such as immigration, global warming, gay marriage and a republic.

Indeed. Women of calibre instead reliably turn to Dame Slap and others at the Nick Cater worshipping lizard Oz, where they can find a daily affirmation from a group of like-minded journalists who tend towards the same views on issues such as climate denialism, stop the boats, filthy gays, and the joys of King Charles III.

And can we throw in a wog joke while we're at it? You see Dame Slap's mythical John Doe ... not a member of the Superlatives for the clever class never speak of each other in such condescending terms as Julia spoke of John last Monday. One pundit writing on Andrew Bolt's blog last week suggested that if John agrees with Gillard about spending then he might be a Spaniard or a Greek or maybe a great big Greek bullshit artist. 

Yes, because wogs are just so funny. And that's such a funny line. A great big Greek bullshit artist! Digging right back into Gillard's history with tradesmen.

Hmm, how to top it, without a hint of ethnic hatred or irony:

 More likely, John is an Australian bloke who works hard, pulls up a stool at the front bar, prefers a show at the Revesby Workers Club to the Australian Opera and lives on the other side of the cultural divide to Gillard.

Yes, and no bloody wogs allowed.

There you go. Written by a "woman of calibre" well on the other side of the cultural divide and a long way from the Revesby Workers' Club (let's not forget that leetest apostrophe).

You see the Revesby doesn't just have ordinary bars. It has the Infinity Bar, a stylish, urbane destination to enjoy some of the best live music Sydney has to offer, the High Tear Bar, where you can celebrate with a glass of champagne (French, maize naturalment), the Skyline Bar and the Sports Bar. Get a taste of Infinity, go to the Revesby ...

But wait, spending all this quality time with Dame Slap has quite ruined the chance of quality time with Miranda the Devine, springboarding off the current racing saga in Sydney to discuss conflicts of interest in A relationship racing towards controversy.

The keen-eyed Devine immediately understood the root cause of the problem: that women are in the workforce on equal terms such relationship dilemmas are an increasingly common ethical problem.

Yes, if only women had stayed in their place at home ... yet here they are causing all these relationship dilemmas and ethical problems. As the Devine and Henry Higgins both note, the world would be a lot simpler without this sort of nuisance and befuddlement

Happily it turns out that all the conflicts of interest available in the Devine's world only involve the Labor party, as you can read at your leisure, no doubt because well-bred refined women, women of calibre, are being funded at a proper level to do the right thing, for the future of Australia, and western civilisation and the race ...

Oops, enough already, time to stop before we go too far, so that's our time spent with Murdochian women of calibre this week, take it away Mehitabel:

we would rather be rowdy and gaunt and free 
and dine on a diet of roach and rat 
than slaves to a tame society 
ours is the zest of the alley cat 
fish heads freedom a frozen sprat 
dug from the gutter with digits frantic 
is better than bores and a fireside mat 
mehitabel us for the life romantic 

when the pendant moon in the leafless tree 
clings and sways like a golden bat 
i sing its light and my love for thee 
ours is the zest of the alley cat 
missiles around us fall rat a tat tat 
but our shadows leap in a ribald antic 
as over the fences the world cries scat 
mehitabel us for the life romantic 

persian princess i dont care that 
for your pedigree traced by scribes pedantic 

ours is the zest of the alley cat 
mehitabel us for the life romantic 

aint that high brow stuff 
archy i always remembered it 
but he was an elegant gent 
even if he was a highbrow and a 
regular bohemian archy him and 
me went aboard a canal boat 
one day and he got his head into 
a pitcher of cream and couldn’t get 
it out and fell overboard he come up once before he 
drowned toujours gai kid he 
gurgled and then sank for ever that 
was always his words archy toujours 
gai kid toujours gai i 
have known some swell gents 
in my time dearie

Toujours Gai. Toujours Devine. Toujours Dame Slap. Toujours Cox. Toujours Monsignor Abbott, such a swell gent dearie ...

1 comment:

  1. This seems relevant as context to Abbott's mind set.



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