Bollocks, I forgot to include the money quote:
When the leaders of a major economy lapse into mysticism and come to believe they can accomplish things through their mental vibrations, without lifting a finger - then it's time to start thinking about going into subsistence farming on a remote compound in Idaho.
I love Barbara Ehrenreich's sporking of The Secret - she goes into it pretty thoroughly in her book on the cult of "positive thinking" in all its manifestations.
Anyway, "The Secret of Mass-Delusion" pretty much sums it up: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/barbara-ehrenreich/the-secret-of-mass-delusi_b_42212.html
Regarding trains to and from airports, and the quibbles about luggage, how much luggage are you taking? I think that people who have more than one bag large enough to check in are decidedly the minority these days.
It is slightly irksome that the Sydney train doesn't have luggage racks, but the seats near the doors are pretty convenient. Roll on, and roll off at Central.
With Brisbane, the last times I've been, the Airtrain seems to be pretty well patronised. When we couldn't fly into the Gold Coast airport, it was a breeze rolling off the plane in Brisbane and onto the train for a cruisy 90 minute ride to Surfer's (and 10 minute taxi ride). Undoubtedly faster than driving in peak times (I reckon about the same with normal traffic flows).
The Heathrow Express in London seems to have plenty of business people patronising it. It's definitely faster than the tube, including a 15 minute walk to get anywhere else at Heathrow. The Underground is fantastic, and certainly to be preferred to any of the other more common options, including driving. Although WHY do flights from NZ arrive at 7am, just in time for peak hour?
Regarding trains to Auckland airport, doing the extra 11k or so from the new Onehunga station, or even perhaps the 6-7k from Puhinui, seems like a no-brainer. Especially given the diabolical traffic on the South Western motorway.
The Soundcloud page for the Bieber song does actually have a link to speeded-up version of something - I thought it was Sigur Ros? Perhaps not (can't check from work), but still appropriate.
And count me in as another electronica lover who finds Sigur Ros boring in the extreme - I obviously don't have the right gene.
As for clothes, god, I hate them. I'm a butch woman, I work in a professional organisation, and I have, er, attributes that rival Christine Hendricks'. While I'm not as svelte as I might be, without the top ballast, I'm a size 14-16. But there is no way a shirt or a jacket less than an 18 will fit me, and unfortunately 16-18 is when the "big" sizes start to kick in, so often they are cut for shoulders and/or a belly I simply don't possess.
So I've been starting to ramp up to tailoring to solve the problem. I got measured up for some stuff by a travelling Thai tailor, and while the work was gorgeous, apparently even despite the humungous bazongas and the fact my back is so long, only men's shirts will stay tucked in, the "trendy" style for a jacket is right on the waist. I feel like Tweedledum wearing it. The trousers looked like something from MC Hammer circa 1990, despite my specifically saying the leg should be straight or slightly bootcut, and while my thighs are not the smallest, my butt is quite tidy and does not require acres of cloth flapping around. So that was about a grand of FAIL.
My favourite shirt is actually one from Strangely Normal, which is a gorgeous red and black paisley men's one in heavy cotton - if I didn't have the gaping front button problem (safety pins get me by, with a jacket), I would wear it ALL the time.
Otherwise, I find clothes shopping quite traumatic - I don't really fit men's clothes, and most women's clothes do not suit me in the slightest (assuming I can get them to fit as well). I've taken on the philosophy that if I see anything decent, I must buy it right away. With a budget or not because otherwise I buy about 3 garments a year, and that's hardly sustainable for a professional wardrobe.
Regarding the whole frigging ludicrous false dichotomy between teh "socially liberal" geyz and wimminz vs teh WORKERZZZZZ, it's amazing how few of the morons who make these comparisons fail to realise that quite a frigging few working class workers also happen to be frigging gay or women themselves. And I can tell you that the queer working class people and women I know actually DO care very much about having fair living and working conditions.
(In fact, the only queer people I know who would actually want to become married-married are working class)
God, it pisses me off, that kind of wilful obliviousness. Not that I have fond memories of the union "brothers" of Trotter's ilk I encountered in the mid-80s, who spent lengthy meetings agitating about the fact that us females (and queers, not I told them at the time) had the audacity to want to contaminate their sacred chapels and workplaces. Wankers.
Completely UNRELATED to the post at hand: when is PAS going to get to grips with the new century and have the site layout designed for screen resolutions larger than 800x600? I checked out the latest W3schools stats, and they have monitors supporting only 800x600 at 1%. 1024x768 at 20% and the vast majority, 76%, at even higher resolutions.
I just think the tiny content space looks cramped, it's tedious to scroll, and all the acres of white space seem wasted. The site would still look fine on most modern mobile devices if it were designed for higher resolutions. And if mobile reading is a consideration, then a subdomain with a different stylesheet, or the ability to read full posts from a news reader would solve it.
Not sure why I haven't mentioned it ever (and in potentially more relevant fora), but it's been narking at me particularly of late.
As for the assertion that the ECA wasn't a "big deal", speaking as someone who was "made redundant" after 7 years, one year after the passage of the ECA, with no payout other than 2 weeks in lieu of notice, bullshit. There was also the small issue of the unions rolling over and playing dead as well (so much for 7 years membership of Jagpro, now Engineers).
Of course, I should have "known" that redundancy provisions that were in the award agreement I'd had for so many years didn't roll over into the contract I "negotiated" - as I recall, the negotiation was in the lines of "take it or leave it".
God only knows why National kept getting re-elected during that period. How many young or working-class people were voting at all around then?
Leaving aside fortune cookies, one thing I could bloody well do without is the ALP's rhetoric about Working-frigging-Families. It's deeply patronising. I'm not in a fucking family. I have plenty of friends who can't work. So does govt policy get to ignore us?
Unfortunately, La Gillard is one of the worst at rolling out that particular phrase. I hope she will cease-and-desist. Soon.
And another one of Rudd's failings is that he managed to alienate almost all of his public servants. I know of rabid Labor supporters in the executive PS who vowed never to vote for "that @rseh*le".
Also, he does not know the meaning of consultation - not at all (although there is such a thing as too much at times). Stuck his head out on a limb and expected everyone else to clean up after him.
Not to start a bunfight on the whys and wherefores of homeopathy - yes, I'm a qualified homeopath (working in IT), no, no-one knows how it works, yes, you get f*ckhead homeopaths, like you get f*ckhead doctors, and no, I really don't care if it boils down to a a placebo effect or coincidence if no-one's being told (illegally) that homeopathy will Cure anything - but that optical illusion analogy linked to above was pretty irrelevant, actually.
I'm particularly peeved at the staring at the sun crack, actually. If homeopathic remedies don't do anything, they don't do anything, including harm anyone. A few idiots might tell people not to go to regular doctors, but it's unethical in the extreme. Some doctors won't refer people to specialists when they need them; virtually all homeopaths (yes, again, excepting a few individual f*ckheads) will refer people to real doctors when it is a matter of life or death, or they are out of their depth.
[Expunging several paragraphs more on people's ability to spend money on whatever they choose, if it's not harming them and they are not being wilfully cheated.]
Off to watch the Ted talk now on scientific denialism for some really scary stuff - add me (despite the foregoing) to the club of people who are horrified at what passes for scientific analysis in the media and general population these days.