Liverpool – European Champions

May 26, 2005 by  
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Let me just say that, as a Liverpool supporter, I am of course very happy with the result this morning. 1-0 down in the first minute was a shock, but at 32 minutes or so I thought the Reds could hang on till half time and bring my prediction of a 2-1 win to Liverpool true. That is until two more goals were scored and AC Milan took a 3-0 lead into half time. Liverpool’s defence couldn’t cope with Milan’s attack, and it seemed the game was all but over. I’ll admit, I was depressed.

Enter Liverpool coach Rafael Benitez. I don’t know how you inspire a team to fight back, but Rafa did it, and the Reds came out firing in the second half. It was simply amazing to see Liverpool score 3 in the space of 6 minutes, led by the mercurial Steven Gerrard. Hang on till the end with some unexpectedly solid saves from Jerzy Dudek, win the penalty shootout and thank you very much for coming.

It will be a shame, nay, an outrage(!), if Liverpool don’t get to play in the Champion’s League next season, even after having won it. But that’s alright, they’ll be making inroads in the Premier League on the back of this form.

This is what I like to hear from Stevie Gerrard in his post-match interview (video available from first link), concering rumours of him moving to Chelsea:

“How can I leave after a night like this, and all the nights I’ve experienced over the season? […] Greatest night of me life.”

Benitez stunned by epic comeback

What the papers say

Uefa defiant over Liverpool entry

ps – yeah, Schapelle Corby… maybe. I guess we’ll find out her verdict tomorrow.

Schapelle Corby introduction

May 21, 2005 by  
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Where to begin? I only have about ten minutes to write this post, so excuse it’s its initial lack of content. I may update later, but not that likely, really.

For those who don’t know, Schapelle Corby is an Australian tourist who was arrested in Bali sometime last year with 4.1 kilograms of marijuana stuffed into her boogie-board bag. She claims she didn’t put it there. Even the prosecution has recommended life imprisonment rather than the death sentence she could receive, but it’s up to the judges who will decide sometime next week. If you didn’t get that, the trial and everything is taking place in Indonesia, and she’s been in an Indonesian jail the whole time. I realise any Australian reading this will know that, but just to inform the uninformed.

Recently some Qantas baggage handlers were found to have been operating a drug smuggling operation using luggage. Their arrest (if it was that, I’m not too sure off the top of my head) was for cocaine smuggling, and happened on the same day as Schapelle Corby’s flight. Fairly strong circumstantial evidence to support her claim that she did not put the stuff in her bag.

Alright, now that you have a brief background, I’ve taken up my ten minutes to write this, and have to go play soccer.

The point that I want to get into is how the media has handled this, PARTICULARLY in the week, and weekend (Australian), leading up to the final decision by the Indonesian judges. I think it’s ethically wrong because the way it’s being covered is I think entirely sales-driven, when what they’re doing could have a direct impact on this person’s life.

Okay, some quick links. Hopefully I’ll be able to expand that last paragraph if I have time, because that’s what I want to critique, media coverage.

Simple Google News “Schapelle Corby” search

Wikipedia entry for Schapelle Corby

How good is Star Wars?

May 21, 2005 by  
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I had to update my rather non-descript Star Wars post with this pearler I just read. I was alerted to the article by the one line quoted in The Australian:

The general opinion of Revenge of the Sith seems to be that it marks a distinct improvement on the last two episodes, The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. True, but only in the same way that dying from natural causes is preferable to crucifixion.

Peruse the entire article by Anthony Lane here. It’s worth your time.


May 20, 2005 by  
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We had this mad storm in Brisbane last night.  Heavy rain and hail for about 30 minutes.  The hail was really small, but there was a lot of it, so the effect was complete – snow in tropical Queensland!  Not really, but it was pretty cool.  They shut down Hale Street because of the ice, which was still piled up when I drove by that direction later in the night.  Ah yes, on the way into the city to watch Episode III.  The large picture is one going around on email; the small picture is the only one I took with my phone as Kate and I were walking into Green Mango, a great Thai restaurant in Bardon.

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Somewhat momentous

May 20, 2005 by  
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It’s fairly impressive watching it on an imax screen. Definitely better than Episodes I and II.


May 17, 2005 by  
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This is so not cool. UK agrees, US not overly concerned.

Regional and western reaction from RadioFreeEurope.

Aid groups and eyewitnesses claim over 500 people were shot by soldiers in the first ‘disturbance’, but apparently the US is more concerned about a dozen or so Islamic terror suspects being freed from jail.

Newsweek starts Jihad

May 16, 2005 by  
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That’s my headline for you. You may have noticed there are a lot of Muslims furious about reports of the Quran being placed on a toilet, and even flushed, during interrogations at Guantanamo Bay. There have been riots and protests in Afghanistan, but I haven’t heard about anything happening anywhere else, but it would be surprising if it was limited to Afghanistan. Now, 300 clerics in a northeastern province of Afghanistan have said they will declare holy war against the US unless they hand over the interrogators responsible, to be tried by an Islamic country. I guess holy war it is then because, yeah, that’s going to happen. What I read in this story for the first time was that this whole thing has stemmed from a Newsweek article, where the desecration of the Quran was first reported. Let me paste the par:

Newsweek magazine said in its May 9 edition investigators probing abuses at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay found that interrogators “had placed Qurans on toilets, and in at least one case flushed a holy book down the toilet.”

So, here’s my question. At what point should journalism censor itself? Clearly people would not have died in protests in Afghanistan; perhaps a(nother) holy war would not be declared on the US, if this had not been reported.

So that’s what I saved as a draft last night and then couldn’t be bothered posting as I thought it a little ridiculous. I mean, if as a journalist you uncover something that shouldn’t be happening, you should report it, right? Well, I figured this wasn’t a case of that, as the reference to the Quran was one line in a short article. I’m posting now because Newsweek is apologising. This isn’t to say it didn’t happen. Stories of other abuses and forms of intimidation have been off colour to say the least, so this would come across as fairly tame to most Westerners who don’t understand the significance to Muslims. That’s all for now.


May 14, 2005 by  
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I think my head’s going to explode. My sinuses are slowly killing me.

Yes, it really is just a few minutes after the last post. I remembered I had a small load of washing. Yes? Is there a problem? Yeah, so I’m doing my washing at 4am. So sue me. Oh, must stay awake…little…bit….iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

Why th letter “i”,kkkkkkkkkkkkkjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjj? or K or J for that matter. goodnight.


May 14, 2005 by  
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I had heard a few things about podcasting, but up until now had not a clue how it worked. Now I’ve read about it at wikipedia, and I can say, “meh.” No, I actually would like to try it, but as anyone stopping by may well realise, I have a hard enough time trying to keep up the posts here without another gadgetry distraction.iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii okay, that there is a clear sign.
When tired, sleep. No, not iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii okay, and again! That’s it. To bed with me. No, not with me. Nearly happened again. Hit post.

Post, before you make a fool of yourself, man!!

Shaking it up

May 10, 2005 by  
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Another large Indonesian earthquake (6.4, the Boxing Day quake was 9.1) has been recorded off the coast of Sumatra, apparently no damage reported, but the last line of the very short piece:

There have been countless aftershocks, which continue to traumatise people across Sumatra.

reminded me of a story I saw yesterday about the “psycho-traumatic epidemic” the December 26 earthquake and tsunami has caused. How do you think you would cope if you, and everyone else who had been away from the village working crops, came back to find your children, wife or husband, parents and anyone else who had been in the coastal village at the time, gone? What can we do?

I’ll trade you

May 9, 2005 by  
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It’s 1.40 am. Kate’s taking a two hour break from her overdue assignment, asleep on my bed, and I effectively have seven hours to write a 2000 word essay. Having typed up some scribblings I’d written next to my notes from references, I have effectively said nothing – gibberish – in 400 words! I’m reminded that 2000 words is paltry, but calls for effective summation of my argument… crap.

Is the World Trade Organization (WTO) armed to deal with issues of poverty and inequity?

They say they are, or they try to be, but they can’t deal with those two issues. Pretty much. Now to flesh that out to a masterpiece.


May 8, 2005 by  
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Bush is rolling towards Moscow and stirring up the Eastern Europeans along the way. Bush acknowledged the US involvement in the dividing up of Europe after WWII, and how the actions taken with Britain and Russia were not too cool, saying:

“Once again, when powerful governments negotiated, the freedom of small nations was somehow expendable […] Yet this attempt to sacrifice freedom for the sake of stability left a continent divided and unstable.”

I haven’t gone searching for any full texts of speeches, but from this I tenuously infer he’s acknowledging the freedom of small nations is expendable. I know it sounds like he’s saying that was a bad thing of the past and things are okay now, and the invasion of Iraq is a result of that. Sure the country of Iraq would be more ‘stable’ at the moment had the US not invaded, but they would have been sacrificing the Iraqi population’s freedom for that stability. Instead, those Iraqi’s are now free! No, we will not sacrifice their freedom for stability. We will sacrifice their stability for our definition of freedom.

I know this is a volatile topic, speculating on the merits of the invasion or whether the people would be better off if still under Saddam. I can’t justify leaving Saddam in power based on the huge loss of individual freedom under his rule, but neither can I justify the invasion by saying that individual freedom has been ‘restored’ because the loss of basic social infrastructure is destroying, I think, more people’s lives now. There’s no question of what to do, though. Saddam is gone; more people are worse off than before he was gone; those people need serious help to make a comeback.