Saturday, October 15, 2011

In the midst of controversy, just about anywhere in the world, there you will find a Kiwi, and a few other Saturday notes

Ha! In the midst of the unfolding controversy in the Church of Ireland, I see, in Thinking Anglicans, that one half of the catalyzing partnership is ... a New Zealander. Reminds me of the time I was having a meal in a very obscure village in the middle of Nowhere in Particular in Middle England and the waitress serving us was a ... New Zealander :). ADU apologises for only tardily making this salient observation about Down Under Anglicans and their global spread.

Speaking of civil partnerships/gay marriage, I see that the man every New Zealander hopes is pinged off the field* around 9 pm - 10.45 pm Kiwi time tomorrow night, David Pocock, has an interesting personal protest as a Christian re gay marriage (H/T Anglican Taonga). I imagine some commenters here will not be objecting to me mentioning this particular news item!

Since Anglican Taonga has drawn my attention to it, here is a commentary on Occupying Wall Street. It is worth going to it for the brilliant picture it includes, which neatly lampoons occupier life on Wall Street (and, around now, heading to NZ). I do not think much of the commentary here about the picture. The fact is, we have consumer choices for many items in life and do not have to kowtow to various corporations by buying or using their products. As a matter of fact, your friendly poster here does not own an iPhone, rarely drinks at Starbucks, and owns no item of clothing made by J.Crew. Though that may have something to do with parsimony :)

*For those unfamiliar with the game of Rugby, and perhaps bemused by Kiwi Rugbyspeak, I simply mean that we hope the referee finds all of David Pocock's rule breaking activities when he infringes the rules concerning attempts to retrieve the ball after an All Black is tackled and falls to the ground, blows the whistle on them,  and gives him a yellow card (10 minutes off the field) or even a red card (out of the game altogether). Allegations have been swirling out of South Africa this past week that the referee last Sunday night, when Australia won 11-9 against South Africa, was either blinder than a bat, or an amnesiac as far as certain laws of the game are concerned, in respect of Pocock's marauding activities!


Lucy said...

re Occupy Wall Street:

Kurt given your involvement and empathy with the protest, I would really like to hear your comments on a question I've been pondering for a couple of weeks: why now? It's easy to identify the possible catalysts, but potential flashpoints always exist. What do you think has sparked such a long lasting response? Even conceding the involvement of Janice's 'rent a mob' only adds to the question, I think.

and how will it effect Obama? (2 questions I know)

Father Ron Smith said...

Alright, Peter. I can discern your reservations about David Pocock. And I'll bet I know why: He is a strong supporter of Gay Marriage. Right?

However, speaking of the 'Red Card'. What do think think of the one delivered by the Ref to the Welsh Captain tonight? Fair or Foul?

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron
My reservations about David Pocock right now are reservations about his ability to lead Australia to victory! (Otherwise, as far as I know, he is not a voting member of General Synod ...).

For a variety of reasons, a yellow card would have sufficed.

Father Ron Smith said...

No, Peter, but he is a happily married Christian who has voiced his support for Gay Marriage. I did wonder whether that had affected your opinion of him - adversely.

Off to Mass now. Have a good day!

Brother David said...

If I read the links correctly Father Ron, he is in a committed opposite sex relationship, but is not actually married. He and his partner refuse to marry until there is marriage equality that allows his G&L friends to also marry.

Father Ron Smith said...

My mistake, David. However, if D.P. is not married yet, he is, at least, happily and heterosexually partnered - with the intention of tying the knot, once his gay friends have been given the right to Marry in Aus.Let's hope he doesn't have to wait too long

Andrew Reid said...

Hi Peter,
Let me be the first to congratulate the All Blacks on a very strong performance in their win over the Wallabies which, should they repeat it next week, will certainly win them the World Cup.

However, I can't let your accusations about David Pocock go unanswered. He is a great player, and if you're going to complain about infringements at the breakdown, you might want to keep a close eye on your own #7 Richie McCaw. If I had a dollar for every time he infringed at the ruck without penalty, I'd be a rich man. As good as he is in other respects, he's made a career out of infringements in the ruck. From the look of today's match, Craig Joubert had been reading the papers too much, was looking to penalise Pocock at every opportunity and duly did so.

You Kiwis might also want to reflect on your disgraceful treatment of Quade Cooper. We Aussies would usually support the All Blacks against any other side, but don't be surprised if we support Les Bleus next Sunday after the shameful threats and abuse he's received.

Peter Carrell said...

We expect, Andrew, that any offending All Black will be detected by the ref and dealt with accordingly.

As for Quade Cooper. In the past he has committed sacrilege by presuming to touch the Messiah. It has been difficult to restrain the citizenry in their outrage. However last night Quade seemed to keep himself out of that particular trouble and thus his stocks may rise.

Press headline this morning: "Aussies walloped."

Father Ron Smith said...

Hi, Andrew. When it comes to Rugby, I guess Quade really needs to become an Aussi citizen if he wants to get any Benefits in Australia. However, he can always come Home if he gets sick - perhaps like now, after yesterday.

Only joking, Andrew; which we all need to indulge in from time to time. This religion thing sometimes gets far too serious! I'm sure God can't help laughing at us sometimes

Kurt said...

These are a couple of good questions, Lucy; I will try to answer them.

Why now, why Occupy Wall Street? I would attribute it to Establishment arrogance. This time The Powers That Be blundered—and blundered big time!

But to understand the context, we have to step back a moment and remember the actions in Madison, Wisconsin this past winter. During this period there was a series of demonstrations in the involving at its height perhaps as many as 100,000 people who were organized to oppose the Wisconsin Budget Repair Bill. The protests centered on the Wisconsin State Capitol in Madison, with other demonstrations occurring at other municipalities throughout the state.

These mass demonstrations set the stage for actions all across the country, including the May 12th actions on Wall Street here in NYC. On Thursday May 12, 2011 thousands upon thousands of New York trade unionists and political activists brought “the spirit of Wisconsin” to the heart of the financial world with a series of coordinated marches that converged on Wall Street.

About this time, ideas were circulating in progressive circles discussing additional actions centering on wall street for the late summer or early fall. This was given more concrete form in July when Adbusters magazine (Kalle Lasn) picked up the idea and produced the now famous poster of a ballerina balancing on the Wall Street bull. And on September 17th two or three hundred protesters began Occupy Wall Street.

For the first week or so, it was a rather ho-hum, protest-as-usual action. Then the authorities made their first mistake. Police Inspector Anthony “Tony Baloney” Bologna was caught on film pepper-spraying two young women for no apparent reason (other than to intimidate, protesters, of course). This produced an angry reaction and 3,000 New Yorkers marched on One Police Plaza to protest police Brutality.

Then, a few days later, the authorities entrapped over 700 protesters on Brooklyn Bridge and arrested them. This blunder, in turn, produced a community/labor demonstration of up to 30,000 only 48 hours later. And the protests continue to spread—now to over 1,200 cities, towns and villages.

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Lucy said...

thanks so much Kurt

Kurt said...

Continuing to answer Lucy…

How will this affect President Obama’s chances a year from know? That’s a long time in American politics. But I will tell you where things are now.

Obama is seen by many people as having betrayed his campaign promises. There was tremendous enthusiasm for him three years ago. All that has changed. The latest Gallup Poll results that I have seen put his approval rating somewhere around 38% (The average for American Presidents since Franklin D. Roosevelt is 54%). His most recent betrayals include his support for three “free trade” agreements.

A lot can happen between now and a year from now, but unless Obama does a 180, his support will continue to drain away. Many are predicting that Romney will be our next president.

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY