Muse by Craig Ranapia

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Muse: That Book, The Ban That Isn't, Farcebook And Outsourced Hypocrisy

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  • Rich Lock, in reply to BenWilson,

    I think the works of Mark "Chopper" Reid are a better example, and they do perhaps hint at this being a little trickier as a rights issue. I browsed some of his work and thought a lot of it sounded like bullshit he was making up, but quite a lot was also highly credible, and it was an insight into his mind. That's not a bad purpose, even if what he did in the stories is, for the most part, reprehensible.*

    I thought pretty much the same thing when I read Ralph Barger's autobiography (founder of the hells angels). He was, and is, by my standards, an unpleasant man. But the book was an interesting insight into his mindset.

    Closer to home, Bruno Issac's 'True Red' (ex-mongrel mob) didn't cause all that much of a fuss when it was released, and that has some pretty nasty stuff in it.

    There are literally dozens of books on the shelves of any UK bookstore which are supposedly the 'true life' memoirs of gangsters (mad frankie fraser et al), or football hooligans. They sell well. There isn't much fuss about them being there.

    You can walk into any library in Auckland and reserve 'True Red', Sonny Barger's book, Chopper Reid's books, 'Inside the Crips', or any one of dozens of other true-life memoirs.

    So It's hard not to think that Wishart knew he'd get this reaction, and he's feeding the fire with all he can give it. You can practically hear him guffawing up his sleeve as he tries to keep a straight face in this story.

    If he was that concerned with the truth, he'd self-publish/distribute. Not hard.

    So I'd prefer to dismiss the crazy, hypocritical old fartknocker, and pick apart what to me is the more interesting part: the public reaction.

    Are we not allowed to read it because people think she's guilty? Or because it might warp our minds? Bit of both?

    Personally, I'd prefer it to be published because there migth be something in there that inadvertently gives something away - a peek behind the wall of silence, a glimpse into the mindset, similar to that discussed above.

    Give 'em enough rope and I'm intelligent enough to know when they've hung themselves - I haven't needed to be told what's in my own best interests for a few decades now.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2396 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    It is *Wishart's* book and he is driving the publicity.
    And it is freely available from HIS site - whatever other booksellers/distributors
    want to do.
    This is a silly wee storm in a megalomaniac's tea-cup.

    bmk: the national library __does__have-

    Jackie C- o the only book we need to read to keep kids safe is the book of family
    love- which has nothing to do with the OT (or any other religious crap) but everything to do with good hominoid behaviour- hold 'em, love 'em, feed 'em, teach 'em,show 'em the boundaries, let 'em know they are cherished and then- let 'em go free-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • peterpeasant,

    From now on our decisions are going to be decided by facebook "friends".

    George Orwell would be spitting tacks that he had not thought of it.

    Has anyone read the book?

    new zealand • Since Oct 2010 • 39 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to peterpeasant,

    rom now on our decisions are going to be decided by facebook “friends”.

    Ur, what?

    That is one of the sillier remarks I've come across in on-line debates.

    FWIW - I dont belong to any kind of 'facebook'-type organisations-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • bmk, in reply to Islander,

    bmk: the national library __does__have-

    Every book ever published? Or every NZ book ever published? I remember reading how every year so many books disappear never to be seen again but maybe that doesn't happen any more - would be nice to think so. I like the idea of there being a repository of every book.

    Since Jun 2010 • 295 posts Report Reply

  • B Jones, in reply to Rich Lock,

    Are we not allowed to read it because people think she's guilty? Or because it might warp our minds? Bit of both?

    The former I think, but it's weirder than that. She wasn't even charged, let alone convicted. There's more evidence that David Bain killed his family than there is that King is responsible for the twins' death, yet Joe Karam's written several books about him that have half the country believing in him. The man's appeared smiling on magazine covers.

    I think somehow people are transferring their frustration at nobody being held responsible onto her. I also think there's a touch of prejudice attached to it - the likes of Bruce Howse, Stephen Williams, Eddie Smith or Azees Mahomed aren't vilified household names the same way that Macsyna King, Rachealle Namana, Lisa Kuka, Tania Witika and so on are, despite being found guilty of similar or worse offences. I don't know whether it's because women are judged more harshly when there's a serious problem with care of children, or it's the perception that child abuse is a Maori issue, or a combination of the two.

    That being said, I'm not planning on reading the book. Mainly it's the Wishart factor. If he told me the sky was blue, I'd be forced to look out the window to check.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 810 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to bmk,

    I “think” the position is still that at least one copy of every book published in ANZ is required to be given by the publishers to the National Library (as it certainly in the UK for any book published there.)

    Whether it is actually required of every SELF-published book here – I’d love to know- can anyone help?

    (I do know that, if a book is entered for any major ANZ prize, it must have
    a)an ISBN #
    b) copies sent to judges.
    This does not obviate the above requirement.)

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Are we not allowed to read it because people think she’s guilty? Or because it might warp our minds? Bit of both?

    You are allowed. If you can hold your nose long enough to buy it from the skunk direct. And when you have read it, you're allowed to report back :)
    That is the point people keep making, and other people keep missing: it's a boycott, not a ban.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 1538 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    I'm perfectly happy for the damn thing to be in libraries, but... my visceral reaction to the book's existence is 'how gross'. That's allowed too, right?

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3653 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark, in reply to Danielle,

    Completely okay. That's my reaction too.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I’m perfectly happy for the damn thing to be in libraries, but… my visceral reaction to the book’s existence is ‘how gross’. That’s allowed too, right?

    I'm Mr Bennett to your Darcy: I wouldn't dare forbid you anything you cared to ask for. I'd also like to think hypocrisy isn't among my character defects, because "how gross" is my visceral reaction to plenty of things in this world.

    But I think that's why I've been more disappointed by Jo McColl and (particularly) Carole Beu. I'm sorry to tell Ms. Beu this, but there plenty of people who'd be "grossed out" by the stock of a feminist/women's bookstore - you know all those icky books about periods, and lesbians and feminist stuff. I suspect there are one or two hairy-legged man-hating femi-Nazis of a certain age who weren't going to the local branch of Whitcoulls & Tombs to browse the radical lesbian feminist section.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11902 posts Report Reply

  • Cecelia,

    I’ve been thinking about this issue all night. The Facebook page isn’t pretty, I agree with you there. Not much reasoned argument against the book, if any.
    However, there are some books that you just don’t want to sully the hallowed halls of your bookstore with. If you were a decent German bookseller in the 1920s, would you stock Mein Kampf????
    And on a purely personal, emotional note, when my local independent bookshop placed Wishart’s “Absolute Power” in the very prominent place, with some sort of promotional material nearby, I made a promise to myself not to shop there anymore. The owners had seemed erudite.
    Wishart’s writing is nasty but polished and can spread so much disinformation. No, his book shouldn’t be banned but what’s wrong with kicking up a stink when a woman who was part of the tight five of deniers during the police investigation, “breaks her silence” to Ian Wishart.

    Hibiscus Coast • Since Apr 2008 • 522 posts Report Reply

  • bmk, in reply to Islander,

    Thanks for the information. I had never known about that - that is a really good scheme that if it were done throughout the world would mean no new books would ever disappear.

    Since Jun 2010 • 295 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    You are allowed. If you can hold your nose long enough to buy it from the skunk direct. And when you have read it, you're allowed to report back :)
    That is the point people keep making, and other people keep missing: it's a boycott, not a ban.

    I don't intend to ever read it. Same as I never intend to read 'atlas shrugged', 'mein kampf', 'holy blood, holy grail', 'the da vinci code', 'the order of the phoenix', and 'Finnegans Wake', among others. My life is too short as it is.

    I'm just interested in the psychology behind the human emotions which Whishart is so adroitly stirring up.

    If you were a decent German bookseller in the 1920s, would you stock Mein Kampf????

    You wouldn't have had a choice, if you wanted your premises to remain intact. It was a de facto required book in every household. Having it prominently on display in your household was required in order to appear normal. Not having it on display was more or less an open invitation for the gestapo to start sniffing around for other signs of un-germanic activity.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2396 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich Lock,

    Not having it on display was more or less an open invitation for the gestapo to start sniffing around for other signs of un-germanic activity.

    Sure they both have a book in them, but that power element is a big difference between this storm in a teacup and the Holocaust.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16605 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Crunchy Weta,

    Maybe some may feel moved to dob in there neighbours.

    Yeah. I’ve haven’t heard any child type noises from our neighbours on either side in all the time I’ve lived here, so assume they murdered the kids and buried them in a shallow grave somewhere. Who can I call?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4443 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Not having it on display was more or less an open invitation for the gestapo to start sniffing around for other signs of un-germanic activity

    1920's. The Gestapo wasn't founded till 1934.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4443 posts Report Reply

  • Cecelia,

    1920’s. The Gestapo wasn’t founded till 1934.

    If Hitler wrote it in prison in 1923/1924 and it was published at that time, it would have just been any other book. Would you have stocked it?
    Many people here and elsewhere have used the analogy with Mein Kampf - its being available in bookstores etc.

    Hibiscus Coast • Since Apr 2008 • 522 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    To put it all succintly... The People Vs Ian Wishart/Macsyna King.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4230 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Mein Kampf was written in the 1920's, but was still in print when the Nazi's gained absolute power* in Germany in the early 1930's. This when it was more or less mandatory for all german households to buy a copy.

    *see what I did there? Do you, though? :)

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2396 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Cecelia,

    Would you have stocked it?

    Interesting question. If I was a bookshop owner struggling in the grim recession years of Weimar Germany and thought I could turn a profit on it, would my scruples be stronger than my desire to stock something that would help me scrape a living? It's just a book, after all, right? What harm can the gibberish raving of an unhinged madman do, and I've got a family to feed.

    I hope so. I don't know so. I'm old enough to realise there are some questions I hope I'm never tested on. I don't necessarily want to know the answer.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2396 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    The thing that I most dislike about this kind of moral panic is the way that it's mighty counterproductive. Way to give the book a whole lot of free publicity.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8444 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Cecelia,

    No, his book shouldn’t be banned but what’s wrong with kicking up a stink when a woman who was part of the tight five of deniers during the police investigation, “breaks her silence” to Ian Wishart.

    When “kicking up a stink” involves verbally abusing staff at a branch of Whitcoulls I patronise who have sweet fuck all to do with this, which I saw today, I find rather a lot wrong with that. Sorry, but that needs saying.

    If you were a decent German bookseller in the 1920s, would you stock Mein Kampf????

    Quite a few would. Of course, if you really want to go there let's note that for most of the 1930's decent German booksellers would have no choice whatsoever about what they stocked -- selling "degenerate" authors were a express ticket to a beating, at best, or a working holiday in a forced labour camp.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11902 posts Report Reply

  • Ngaire BookieMonster, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    That is the point people keep making, and other people keep missing: it’s a boycott, not a ban.

    Part of the problem, though, is that a lot of the people who are missing that point are those supporting it.

    At the foot of Mt Te Aroh… • Since Nov 2009 • 173 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich Lock,

    would my scruples be stronger than my desire to stock something that would help me scrape a living?

    A question asked by some dairy owners recently over the Kronic panic. Another legally available product brutally suppressed. Where will it end? :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16605 posts Report Reply

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