Tuesday 4th of August 2020

getting old... will the queen send herself a herogram on her 100th?


One of Gadfly’s field agents reports that his stepmother had turned 100 and was anxiously awaiting a letter from Her Majesty to mark the occasion. Instead, through the post came a congratulatory letter from Michael McCormack, the deputy PM who is promoting carbon emissions as a way to contain bushfires.

The old dear was beside herself with grief and concerned she may not get to 101.

Quite possibly Betty Battenberg is too absorbed in the TV doco The Prince and the Paedophile to be sending telegrams to venerable subjects. And Schmo has been on a full-time mission looking smug.

What is to become of a colony that no longer receives herograms from Her Maj?


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the monoculture of the sisterhood...

What do women in the West owe to women in the Global South? And how can they act on those obligations without perpetuating a colonialist mindset?

"No one is free when others are oppressed" is a quote often attributed to Mahatma Gandhi.

In fact, there's no evidence that Gandhi ever actually said or wrote it, but it's a sentiment that's been taken to heart by freedom movements of all persuasions.

But like many universalist claims, it enshrines a noble ideal that can become problematic in practice.

Feminist discourses, for example, have long been centred around the notion that if one woman is oppressed, all are oppressed.

"Universal sisterhood" is fine in principle — feminism as an internationalist movement where the fight against sexist oppression cuts across race, class and culture.

But it can be tricky when examined up close.

Feminist universalism has a colonialist past

Gender-based oppression takes different forms in different cultures, and what's liberating to women in one part of the world might not be particularly helpful to women in another.

The notion of "universal sisterhood" has too often provided cover for Western feminists to dictate the terms of liberation to women in the Global South.

So says Serene Khader, a political philosopher at Brooklyn College, City University of New York.


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king charlie...

A recent TV series about Prince Charles lets us know about the feats and travails of the Prince... Some people in the know seem to believe that this is a softening of our erroneous perceptions that he might be a greenie idiot, to let us accept that he is full Royal material — and might become King Charlie soon... We can't speculate about the worth of this idea, but we can shout: "Long Live the Aussie Republic". Altogether now: 


"Long Live the Aussie Republic"