Tuesday, July 27, 2010

"How many times have I told you that homosexuality is only to be used for revolutionary purposes?"

The film LA Zombie ('an erotic gay satire') has not been banned in Australia, but 'refused exemption'. One means the film cannot be shown in Australia. The other, um, means the film cannot be shown in Australia (it's a subtle difference). Not even at a film festival where only adults would see it. Now a film depicting 'wound shagging' and ejaculating blood may not be to your taste, but if you go to a film festival to see a Bruce LaBruce film, EoR concurs with Julie Rigg that you'd have a pretty good idea what sort of film you're about to see. If anything, it sounds just as much postmodernist as pornographic. Furthermore, if the film hadn't been refused exemption EoR, and countless others, would never have heard of it.

Meanwhile, a submission to an Australian Senate Committee reviewing the proposed internet filter has had a link to a YouTube video censored even though the video can be legally purchased in Australia, and even though the internet filter is only supposed to deny access to material that is not legal in Australia. They also censored a link to the Amazon.com page for Ken Park (as if no one would ever be able to find the film at Amazon otherwise).

As to just which material you can legally own in Australia, some Australians are more equal than others (particularly if you're Aboriginal):

"It is lawful for Australian citizens to possess, own, read or view, give away and purchase RC (Refused Classification) content in all forms, except in Western Australia (which has a state law which criminalises possession of RC content) and parts of Western Australia and the Northern Territory associated with the Aboriginal Intervention (where possession of content rated higher than MA 15+ is an offence)."

As if this is not silly enough, the Government is proposing that ISPs retain the web browsing history and emails of all users. A consultation paper on this matter that has been released under FOI has had around 90% of it censored. A legal officer from the Attorney-General's Department explains why:

"I consider that release of such documents may lead to premature unnecessary debate and could potentially prejudice and impede government decision making."

You wouldn't want any premature discussion of a major data retention initiative. Just look at how much furore discussion of the internet filter has released.

EoR thinks it is about time for the Revolution:

"The Revolution is my boyfriend!"


  1. The govt are wringing their hands on why young people are not voting.

    The main reason I've been given is "why bother? Liberal and Labour are the same".

    Many under 25 say they will vote for a party who:

    Takes strong action on climate change.
    Protects personal liberty (NO internet filters)
    Supports a super-fast broadband service.

    They would vote Greens but know unless you have a likely winner in your area, this just ends up in Labour preferences - and the nearest and dearest concern to them is internet meddling!

  2. But they're holding a citizens' assembly! What more do these complainers want?

  3. The meme that "A vote for A is just a vote for B" is something that desperately needs fixing. I hear it all the time and it's frustrating - no party gets to allocate your preferences unless you let them.

    The only way a vote for Greens is, by default, a vote for Labor is if the voter chooses to follow instructions on a how-to-vote card. Unfortunately, that's what a lot of people do.

    If you prefer Greens but definitely not Labor then put Greens 1 and Labor last.

  4. Yes Andy, it is annoying. But if you are also anti-Liberal because of other core issues, you are stuck - unless Malcolm grabs the reins, but the opposition has enjoyed such "success" without his leadership this is unlikely.
    Also possible the Libs will go with a filter too.
    Who can refuse to protect little children - even though it won't?

  5. Yep, preferential voting has it's dilemmas but the "first past the post" alternative is fraught with problems too - like people elected with only 30% support.

    It is frustrating, to be sure, but I think the problem is voter apathy, not the voting system.

    The internet has the power to change a lot of things - but maybe that's why pollies want to take control of it.


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