Wikimotives

Z told me not too long ago about a bit of media that sprung up around a Russian academic who had illegally supplied huge numbers of academic papers for free on the internet. I responded to this information with something along the lines of “that sounds like a more useful but less important wikileaks.”

So impressed was I with this scathing and shrewd analysis I had voiced, that I decided to put it on the blog. You see, I believe that is what people like Assange and Snowden think when they find a juicy piece of confidential sticker. They think,  “How bad-ass would I look if I told this secret to the whole class?” Clearly the reasons, happenings and benefits behind all the things they’ve done are more complex than my off the shoulder cynical assessment. Still, I bet they wanted to release whatever they were given before thinking about whether it might be a good idea or not. Maybe that was even part of the drive to find out a good reason to do it.

I should disclose that I recently found a site called “wikileaks.somethingorother”  by accident on google. I thought ‘oooh!’ and clicked it to find out what kinds of juicy facts it might tell me that I couldn’t access otherwise and then feel super informed. Unfortunately it was full of just a bunch of links to public access government documents of no interest. Like a white paper on plumbing infrastructure for the greater Talbingo area or something. So I was disappointed and now I’m cynical about anything whistle-blowery.

Apart from generate some scandal, I never learnt if there was anything useful that people could do with the information that was leaked. maybe there was some kind of PR pressure that led to citizen freedoms being protected from what ever means the government was using at the time that got leaked. IDK, I didn’t pay much attention. My disinterest informed my conclusion that they probably did it for the glory and attention.

Wouldn’t it feel cool to uncover a conspiracy like that? Let’s face it, the power trip would be pretty sweet.But the childlike excitement of discovery would be better. No wonder Assange looks like he’s got his dick in every pie on every windowsill in the world, he’s a real life Nancy drew.

More importantly, who will win survivor? lol jks, like all issues I bring up here I shall avoid having an opinion and leave it open to a hypothetical future discussion… actually I’m going to say I think their innate humanity let them down and that the whistle-blowers are uncool.

-W

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Forget ‘The Political Compass’ – Just Take a Drive

It’s a long-known fact that everyone’s political views, no matter how different, are, in their own eyes, exactly in the centre, or ‘centre-left’ if they’re far-right. But, of course, in reality, this cannot be true for everyone – my friends hated my controversial decision to grow a mullet, so I’d say they’re more conservative than me, for instance. So how does one objectively measure how liberal or conservative a person is, if we’re not to trust their own judgement? Some might point to online tests, most notably The Political Compass, but these tests, whilst giving you a detailed picture of your standing in relation to the rest of the world and the major political parties of your country, take up to fifteen minutes, and will add up to five cents to your power bill. My newly-devised method, meanwhile, gives you a guess that may occasionally be accurate in a mere half-hour, and will cost you nothing provided you’re good at scabbing lifts off people.

You see, a person’s attitude to driving is, actually, quite relevant to their political stance. Let me explain. A forever unbroken rule of driving is that everyone faster than you is too fast, and everyone slower than you is too slow, regardless of your actual speed. However, different people respond to higher/lower speeds differently, and here is where I make my judgement. If one were to see a minivan with tyres thinner than our taxes for Qantas driving at below the speed limit and didn’t mind, I would contend that they are probably liberal-minded, as it shows they’ve kept an open mind to the possibility that different drivers and cars may have different speeds at which they are comfortable. If, however, a driver doing 80km/h in a 100 zone gives a car zooming past at 93 an indignant stare pretending to be dismissive (well that’s what he did to me), I would contend that he is absolutely not open-minded, as he refused to consider looking at the road though anyone else’s point of view.

By the way, he drove a light green Commodore Calais, probably VY model, on the Hume Freeway, near Watsonia in Melbourne, about a month ago. You’re damn right I’m bitter.

This method of political diagnosis has strong implications. For instance, we can now predict the transport policies of either party if they are to become government (since we still have no idea who it’s going to be). If Turnbull comes into power, we can be sure that speeding fines will be increased. I can see him complaining about the slow car already: “This guy’s doing a bad job, his speed isn’t showing any growth….” If, on the other hand, Shorten gets in … things will probably stay about where they are now, actually, because all he’d say upon seeing a slower car is ‘Medicare’, having lost the remainder of his vocabulary during the election campaign. If the Greens got into power though, we’d expect the only proper system of roads, the autobahn, except that they’re against using petrol. It’s a horrible catch-22 for them. So basically, things are going to be bad for drivers in Australia. Sorry fellas.

Oh, and I won’t hide it – woe is the person in front of me who dares to drive anything more than 2km/h below the speed limit. Especially if they’re driving Commodores.

-Z

A car wrecker’s yard is likely the closest you will come to space.

Car wrecking businesses in Australia are starting to feel the cold hand of bureaucratic oppression which is only the start of the fall from their lofty place in Romantic modern society. Cars really are the most futuristic and potent of all adventure tools. You can live within a mechanopod of comfort, fun and purpose when you are in a car. With societies’ love and even dependence on this fantasy come to life, that is the car, we can have swathes of people able to live nothing but these fantastical machines. Mechanics, panel beaters, fuel stations, parts shops and of course, car wreckers. The fact that you can make good money from all the parts of a machine that can’t otherwise be kept running viably is a throwback to when people cared about things. Hard working people maintained garden tools instead of swigging back another Mount-Franklin on your fifth daily smoko to whinge about how politicians are failing to uphold your ideals for environmental sustainability before going to Bunning’s to replace another bloody shovel. The car wrecker is that crazy old caricature who has a bunch of junk to sell to keep you moving at incredible speeds while sitting in comfort, safety, and technological wonder.

Walking into a wrecker’s yard is like walking in to a utopian retro-future. If you want to feel like you live in Star Wars the best thing you can do is drive a car to a wrecker’s yard and revel in the brief moment before the wrecker answers your query “My R2 unit has a bad motivator, and do you have a protocol droid which speaks Batching?” After all, cars are, for all intents and purposes, spaceships. Well it’s not that stupid; they move people around through spatial dimensions. That’s true. They might not be ships though. Call them spacecraft then, humour me. They have an engine bay, which is the car’s primary chemical reactor. It unleashes the power of controlled explosions to propel the craft at speeds hitherto undreamt of by snails and sloths. The battery is the secondary chemical reactor full of acid and shit, required for the ignition sequence for the primary reactor. It also powers the primary navigation beams and beacons, the headlights and blinkers. Windy windows control internal air pressure of the cabin in the craft where belts hold the passengers in place because of the incredible forces they are subject to (or maybe that’s just me). The things are packed full of future stuff, and they are also so readily available that any old star hustler can pick one up and go on an adventure to distant locations in the blink of a ten hour drive.

What do these machines run on you might ask? What mystical substance can produce such incredible power and unleash such blinding energy? Well that is a refined fluid millions of years old buried deep beneath the earth and formed from the remnants of incredible beasts and forests the likes of which astound and awe the imaginations of the mortals who unleash its improbable cosmic energy! Cars are better than you, face it. An ancient substance so valuable is mined from sandy wastelands to bring great riches to desert nations in order to propel the civilisations of the modern world, which wails out at any disruption to supply “The spice must flow!”

Now that we have the big picture in mind, back to the point. Car wrecking is undoubtedly the cheapest and most satisfying industry surrounding the automotive scene. This is because they are the ones who see the most value. They take the shitty bombs and even burnt out wrecks and turn them into value. They recycle, cannibalise and maintain, more than any other. This is why they are the best. They are the ones who spread the adventure of cars to the farthest reaches of society. A lowly slum lad, or desert farm boy, can get a bomb and keep it running, make it better and have more fun because the adventure is there for the taking, just as the wreckers took the cars no one wanted and saw their value. That said, I’m sure wreckers aren’t shitty philosophers, wasting time writing joke articles online, they aren’t snooty or anything, they are regular people living better than most people because their lives are full of wonder, or broken CV joints, whatever.

However, Australian society, especially NSW, is trying to stifle the populace’s will to live, and in so doing they have started already to wrap their masturbatory fingers around the freedom of our hero, the car wrecker. If you’ve been to one recently you’ll notice that there is white marker on every panel and pane of the heaped vehicles there. The RTA keeps tabs on every part, EVERY PART. So they can track down the stolen plans of their secret battle station, no doubt. I actually have no idea why, probably to give someone a job typing up serial numbers in the name of safety or something.

Reality sucks.

-W