(Above: when in Melbourne, the pond always visits the Australian Galleries, and loves the work of Graeme Drendel. If the pond had the money, this one would be in the lounge room right now. As it is, all it can do is set the mood for the pond taking another trip into Murdoch la la land. By golly that snake looks just like little Timmeh Bleagh).
So what's the news this Monday on the commentariat front, up there with the bleakness of the western front, as we head towards springtime for musicals and other follies ...
Well it's relatively quiet, or at least predictable.
Over at the Fairfaxians, Paul "magic water man" Sheehan does his routine bit of union bashing in The inquiry, unions and ghost majorities, but the Fairfaxians thought so little of it that, at time of writing, you had to click through to find it.
Well someone's got to maintain the Abbott government faith in loaded inquiries and commissions, and no doubt the Fairfaxians will elevate Sheehan to the front of the digital page at some point during the day, but you have to ask yourself, is it worth a click, is it worth wasting five minutes of a day that could be bursting with the energy of impending spring?
Perhaps only if you want to enjoy bile and bitterness and assorted other Macbeth witch ingredients.
Meanwhile over at the lizard Oz things continue to continue in an entirely predictable fashion.
Paul Kelly keeps on writing about Paul Kelly writing about former Chairman Rudd, and just to liven things up, Troy Bramston writes about Paul Kelly writing about former Chairman Rudd, and for variation, there's desiccated Henry Ergas writing about former Chairman Rudd, and that's what lights the wick of Chris Mitchell it seems ...
No, the pond started to feel jaded. No doubt about it. How many times can you make the old Simpsons' joke, The Optus The, or for variation, The big Mal NBN The?
So what else?
Well on the Islamophobia front, little Timmeh is at it again, trolling with click bait for attention.
Here's how it works:
Little Timmeh is capable of being sincere?
What's more he's making a sincere apology to all his Muslim friends?
He has Muslim friends and so can use "all" in that sentence?
It's a nonsense of course. Bleagh is routinely insincere. He couldn't lie straight in bed, let alone pen a sincere apology. When it comes to sincerity, Bleagh is disingenuous, evasive, hypocritical, mendacious, perfidious, hollow, double-dealing, duplicitous, shifty, phony slick, two-faced, snide and sly.
And that's only half of the thesaurus.
Oh come on you say, that's being a bit savage, but if you think that, you clearly don't understand how gutter click bait trolling tabloid journalism works in the days of the full to overflowing intertubes.
You see, you put up a false header which invites the click, and then you thumb your nose at the reader. Ha, you didn't really think Bleagh had any intention of apologising?
So please allow the pond to do a spoiler.
Here's Bleagh's idea of an apology:
Anyhow, enough of this evidence-based malarky. Time to get this apology out of the way.
To any readers who actually followed those instructions at the top of the column and converted to Islam, I neglected to include an important warning. Although converting to Islam is extremely easy, converting from Islam — particularly in the Middle East — may cause beatings, head loss and death by stoning. Looks like you’re stuck with it. Sorry about that.
What an offensive fuckwit, and yes the pond thought of using offensive language, but instead decided a charming Australianism would do the job ...
As for the rest, what can be said for it?
Well it's just Blair doubling down on his original valiant trip into Lakemba, to be shocked by the Islamics ...
In the new piece, Blair discovers Islam is a religion, not a race, refusing to comprehend that while this is true on a pedantic level worthy of the academics Bleagh routinely despises, much of Blair's approach is riddled with racism, in much the same way that anti-semitic abuse conflates the Jewish religion with old fashioned anti-semitic stereotypes.
That aside "particularly in the Middle East" gives that game away.
In the good old days, the notion that Irish Catholics were potato eating Papists involved in an international conspiracy designed to do down the British empire was a common stereotype, and the Irish men always looked like New York cops fresh out of Hell's Kitchen and Tammany Hall, and the women resembled dumplings. Ah Tamworth, Tamworth ...
But then we're not looking for subtlety or nuance when it comes to Bleagh.
Instead, he doubles down on his original piece, smiting mightily his enemies with righteous prose, which inter alia, includes but is not limited to shouty Fairfaxian lawyer Chris Murphy (Bleagh himself being so quiet you could hear a sparrow fart while in his company), charming Twitter identity Melinda, and Labor member Lakemba Robert Furolo who simply doesn't measure up to little Timmeh's rigorous feminist credentials.
You see, little Timmeh is appalled that there's a book store selling sexist (and anti-Semitic) texts in Sydney's southwest, and if there's one thing little Timmeh can't stand, it's vile sexism:
Last time I checked, nearly every suburb in Sydney has bookstores, yet we don’t define the residents of those suburbs by what the authors of those books say or think,” wrote Labor’s member for Lakemba Robert Furolo.
“That would be just absurd.”
Really, Bob? In almost every other Sydney suburb, a shop selling outright hate literature would face protests and closure.
Really little Timmeh? What if the book ran an extended poll and joke about women being fright bats?
Just good old-fashioned harmless fun, and if any of you hoes, bitches and sluts have got a problem with that, where's your sensa huma?
Indeed. You might also wonder where Bleagh's understanding of his innate, profound stupidity and hypocrisy gets him when it comes to having a go at Islamics for being sexist.
But that's what happens when you're dealing with an old-fashioned trolling fuckwit eager to keep the hits rolling.
Along the way, Blair also slags off John Birmingham, Jonathan Green, and then takes on, head on, all those whining, moaning PC feminists, led by that dreadful fright bat Wendy Bacon:
A few weeks ago, for example, Sydney journalism academic Wendy Bacon led an attempted advertiser boycott of The Daily Telegraph after I ran an online poll making fun of feminist “frightbats”. Apparently it’s just fine, though, to sell books that claim women are worth only half the value of a man. And they are going to hell.
Yes, because Islamics making fun of women is wicked and evil, but little Timmeh Bleagh making fun of feminist frightbat fruitbats is just a jolly jape amongst chums, and where's your sensa huma?
Sssh, don't mention angry Sydney Anglicans determined to run a complementarian Adam and Eve line, or the Pellist trucking company, run exclusively by men ...
Somehow the pond seems to have forgotten to link to little Timmeh's piece, for fear it might somehow reward him with a single click, but before you head off there, if you must, why not re-read Jeff Sparrow in Crikey doing a smackdown of Blair's original piece, Tim Blair journeys to western Sydney, finds Muslims, freaks out (paywall affected).
Strangely, Bleah doesn't mention Sparrow, perhaps because it cut a little too close to the bone, and it's a lot easier to slag off Birmingham for living in Brisbane. Talk about a Campbell Newman heart of darkness ...
Sparrow had great fun comparing Blair's expedition to others that went into the heart of darkness - Blair somehow seemed to think of himself as Stanley heading into darkest Africa in search of Livingstone or perhaps ivory trader Kurtz risking madness in the Congo (or Vietnam if you happen to prefer Coppola):
As expeditions go, it was a doozy.
“We’re for Sydney,” boasts the Tele (and it is all for a “Fair Go For The West”) — but its sometime opinion editor seems to have never previously encountered a suburb just 30 minutes from the CBD. When he makes the hazardous trek to (as the headline put it) “take a look inside Sydney’s Muslim Land”, our correspondent installs himself in the Lakemba Hotel, where unnamed locals and the pub staff voice the usual barroom complaints about Muslims, who — get this! — don’t drink enough to keep the place running.
Earlier this year, the Tele was hyperventilating about alcohol-fuelled violence. In Lakemba, however, the absence of boozers signifies an Attack on Our Way of Life. Across the road from the pub, Blair finds an Islamic bookshop (possibly visible from the bar window), where he’s shocked — shocked! — to uncover some prejudiced and sexist religious tracts. “The problem for conservative populists is that the racial and ethnic divisions on which they depend are fading in comparison to the yawning gulf between political insiders and everyone else.”
Maybe for another scoop, he could check out the Bible — say, Deuteronomy 25:11-12, where the foundation text of Western culture explains: “When men fight with one another, and the wife of the one draws near to rescue her husband from the hand of him who is beating him, and puts out her hand and seizes him by the private parts, then you shall cut off her hand.”
Christianity, you so crazy!
Well indeed. That's perhaps the funniest bit of Blair's attempt to double down. His outrage at books demeaning women who are off to hell ...
No doubt the long absent lord will take a view when She gets around to watching her servant at work calling women frightbats and laughing at them and mocking them (who knows, perhaps even thinking they'd look better with a crown of thorns and a glass of vinegar to purify their harpy, harping lips).
Never mind, Sparrow ended his smack down this way:
In the culture war skirmishes from which he makes his bread and butter, Blair can pose as Joe Sixpack, channeling the outrage of plain-speaking Aussies about political correctness gone mad. But in the real world, where no one cares about that stuff, he’s just another wealthy white columnist amazed at a suburb in which ordinary people are living out their lives.
And sadly that's the real killer remark. Of all the members of the culture wars commentariat doing the rounds, little motorhead Timmeh is the dumbest, the Joe the plumber of the tribe, occasionally reaching up to Sarah Palin heights, but rarely ...
That's what happens when you abuse Islamic fundies for being sexist one day of the week, and spend the other six days being sexist yourself ...
Of course Bleagh's not the only one beating the Islamic drum. After all, if we believe Tony Abbott, the first Islamic beheading in Australia is just around the corner:
Yes because hoping for the first Islamic beheading in Australia isn't extremist politics at all, nor is it fear-mongering. It's just joyous optimism. By golly, that first beheading will get everyone to vote Liberal and to heil the Bolter as a prophet ...
But don't despair at the Bolter being distracted from his job as the world's top climate scientist by the wicked Islamic fundies.
It turns out that little Timmeh is also a top notch climate scientist.
So how's this business plan working out for the Murdochians?
Remind the pond.
Truth to tell the pond can't get enough of it, and seems to have been re-printing Crikey all week, because it's a reminder of just how predictable the results are that comes from this kind of mind-numbing predictability:
Oh okay, just for fun and just for a little variation, the pond got that graph from the AFR's News Corp's worst story gets out. (may be paywall affected).
Seems like it might be News Corp that's going to hell. Business and circulation hell that is, the pond will leave the fictional hell to Islamic fundie and angry Sydney Anglican silly billies ... and to twits like little Timmeh who seems to think the threat of hell carries some weight ...
And now on with the main business of the week, of increasing taxes and punishing everyone for daring to point out that the Abbott budget wore no clothes and that the emperor and his minions also seemed to be a little short on glad rags, and as always more Rowe here.
Every day getting funnier in every way: