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ashkara
17 June 2010 @ 02:51 pm
Anna Bligh  has announced that Queensland police now have the authority to issue on-the-spot fines for swearing.
www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm

This is a big deal.

This is a law which has been on the books pretty much forever, but police have now been given powers to give out tickets for infractions, whereas previously people had to go to court to have the matter decided. This is in a state where police have quotas they have to fill (which is an obscene idea in the first place, if there's not enough crime the police get shafted)... usually for speeding tickets, but it's only another baby step to a quota of swearing tickets per month.


They took our guns away.
They made a law to say that our intelligence organisation can detain anyone at any time without charges, evidence, or criminal involvement.
They decided they wanted to censor what we were able to access over the internet, and we're still fighting that battle.

Now police are being given a no-holds-barred way to censor what we say, without a court being part of the action. There is no actual list of words, it's up to the individual officer to decide what is swearing and what isn't.  www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/queensland-police-to-consider-whether-swearing-is-in-context/story-e6freoof-1225880713274


And anyone who hasn't read 1984 should do so.  This is how that sort of state begins. You make a line in the sand. Then you step one step over it and look back. It's not so far. Then you take another step. You can still see where you came from quite clearly, it's not a huge leap to make. But one step plus one step plus one step plus...
And you turn around and that line is so far away that you can't even see it any more.  And Big Brother looms.

I'm worried about where we're headed.  As should any Australian be who values their freedoms.

If ever I'm given a ticket for swearing, I will fight it.  I hope everyone would fight it.  It's obscene.  
 
 
Current Mood: enragedenraged
 
 
ashkara
07 January 2010 @ 07:17 pm
Today I learned the difference between a volunteer and a conscript.

I did my first day of volunteer work at The Salvation Army's second hand store today. I knew it was going to be rough on the feet, but I didn't expect it to be rough on the ears as well.

Everyone was lovely. Except the one person who hadn't chosen to be there. She was a Work For The Dole victim, and she played the victim right to the hilt. Being also fresh meat, she latched onto me and followed me around all day, grizzling in my ear the entire time. Her beef? That they wouldn't let her run the till yet. She didn't feel content to do the work of tidying, restocking, meeting customer's needs... no, she was here to GET RETAIL EXPERIENCE.

LOL. Last I looked, retail was all about keeping shelves stocked, keeping shop-fronts clean, meeting customer needs. Running the till? It's just the tip of the iceberg in retail. And every store has a different system anyway. A cash register here is not necessarily the same make/model as the next cash register you'll be using, especially one in a charity organisation like the Salvo's.

But there was a telling moment in the conversation when her true biases showed. "I've never actually been inside a shop like this one," she admitted to me, "Yesterday I felt so dirty after being here that I had to scrub my hands for an hour. Who knows where this stuff was last?"

Turn's out she's someone who's never voluntarily stepped foot inside the walls of any charity second-hand store. She was amazed that there were people like me who would offer my time for FREE to work in places like that. I find it ironic that she was worried about the dirt that might have been on the merchandise, but not at all worried about the fact that the money is ten times more dirty than anything else in that store.
 
 
Current Mood: soresore
Current Music: Some metal thing my housemate is listening to
 
 
ashkara
18 October 2009 @ 01:00 pm
So... It seems I'm getting married.

I need songs to play at a reception where a good number of the people attending are into alternate/metal/goth music.  This poses an interesting conundrum... what to play at the reception which will actually be appropriate and yet not sicken the guests by being sappy mainstream crud?  I will, I think, turn to SOME mainstream songs, but I want to be able to also play metal.

Any suggestions from internet land would be appreciated.
 
 
Current Location: Aki's house
Current Mood: ecstaticecstatic
Current Music: Nothing Else Matters, Metallica
 
 
ashkara
18 March 2009 @ 12:25 pm
A monumentous thing happened to me yesterday.  

I was ordained.

I am now a Minister for The Universal Church Triumphant of the Apathetic Agnostic.  

It's a simple premise on which to actually base a church... a church is simply a formalised group of people who have basically the same view on God, right?  So why not?
The church isn't made up only of people who define themselves as agnostic, there are weak atheists who accept that gods cannot be disproven, and there are apparently also some deists amongst the clergy.  To become a member you simply have to accept the three articles of faith:

1. The existence of a Supreme Being is unknown and unknowable.
2. If there is a Supreme Being, then that being appears to act as if apathetic to events in our universe.
3. We are apathetic to the existence or nonexistence of a Supreme Being.

This doesn't mean that we have to be apathetic about the effect that religion has upon our society, we are not apathetic about our agnosticism.  

Find them at http://www.apatheticagnostic.com/
 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
 
 
ashkara
12 March 2009 @ 12:25 am


Your result for The Which Chemical Element Am I Test...

P... Phosphorous

You scored 44 Mass, 46 Electronegativity, 44 Metal, and 0 Radioactivity!

You're high energy... really high. Unfortunately, you don't always put your energy to calm constructive use and sometimes let it all out in intense bursts. If your energy can be harnessed however, you will produce truly great things. I suggest you take up a job that runs you ragged... like opening and closing a Sodium-Potassium pump. Socially you ought to hang with a crowd that is even more social than you. If you don't, well... all those people who spontaneously combusted throughout history... you guessed it, phosphorous people who didn't have enough to occupy themselves. When picking friends make sure most of them rated high on the electronegativity scale... Chlorines, Oxygens and whatnot.


Take The Which Chemical Element Am I Test
at HelloQuizzy



I quite like the idea that I am phosphorus.  Pretty burning...
 
 
Current Location: a jar of water
Current Mood: creativecreative
 
 
 
ashkara
10 March 2009 @ 11:19 pm
Awesomeness originates here.

I love sarcasm at it's best.  And there are so many reasons to find Creationists funny. 


 
 
Current Location: Riding Jebus' pet T-Rex
Current Mood: gigglygiggly
 
 
ashkara
1. Secular Humanism (100%)
2. Unitarian Universalism (92%)
3. Nontheist (75%)
4. Liberal Quakers (75%)
5. Neo-Pagan (70%)
6. Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (66%)
7. Theravada Buddhism (63%)
8. Reform Judaism (56%)
9. New Age (51%)
10. Taoism (50%)
11. Sikhism (41%)
12. Scientology (40%)
13. Orthodox Quaker (39%)
14. Mahayana Buddhism (38%)
15. New Thought (37%)
16. Baha'i Faith (36%)
17. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (34%)
18. Christian Science (Church of Christ, Scientist) (30%)
19. Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (26%)
20. Eastern Orthodox (24%)
21. Islam (24%)
22. Orthodox Judaism (24%)
23. Roman Catholic (24%)
24. Jainism (21%)
25. Seventh Day Adventist (18%)
26. Hinduism (14%)
27. Jehovah's Witness (7%)


Thanks to Beliefnet for confirming my secular humanist leanings. I already knew this (gee, why can't they just come out and say "atheist"?), but it was nice to have it confirmed...  However, how come I'm only 75% non-theist?



 
 
Current Location: Home in bed sick
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: Zoe Keating
 
 
ashkara
12 February 2009 @ 10:18 pm
Last year, on this day, I was Pagan.  So this is my first Darwin Day as an atheist.  As such I will relate to you this somewhat extraordinary day.  (For those of you in the ass-end of the world, yup, I'm in Australia... we get there almost first!)

0930:  I wake up.  I have a sore neck and discover that I can't turn my head to the right. 

1000:  Drag myself out of bed.

1005:  First cigarette of the day.  Sitting down on the back stairs I jar my right hand.  (I need surgery on that hand, I have a rather large ganglion on the wrist and it causes me quite a bit of pain... especially when I forget that it's sore.)

1010:  Jar my hand again getting up.

1012:  Activated a heat pack for my hand.  Forget to put something between the heat pack and my skin, barely avoiding being burned by it.

Television... it's all focussed on the Victorian bushfires at the moment.

1036:  Accidentally hit my right hand on the edge of the table.

Read atheist blogs online

1100ish:  Burn my mouth on a cup of tea.

1200:  Put the used heat pack into a saucepan of water to boil (it resets the heat pack... useful) and set the timer to 10 minutes.

1230:  Smell plastic burning. 

I've forgotten about the heat pack and haven't heard the timer go off.  The heat pack has exploded because the water has run dry.

1231:  Rush into a kitchen filled with smoke, take the pot off the stove, stupidly turn on the water and put the pot under it to stop the smoke.  Of course the water explodes and spits madly when it hits the hot metal.  I get burned on the left hand... only small spots thankfully.

1232:  Leave the kitchen and rush into the bathroom to run my hand under water, coughing violently from the plastic fumes.

1240:  Taxi arrives to take me to work.

1250:  Arrive at work.

1255:  Relate my morning to co-workers.  Sit around for 35 min waiting for the weekly meeting to start.

1330:  Weekly half-hour of boredom sets in.

1400:  Start work.

1415:  Discover that my first 15 min of work has been in vain as I have missed a vital error.  Spend the next hour fixing the error.

1530:  Break my scalpel blade.  The broken piece goes zinging across the lab and I spend 5 min looking for it so nobody will get it embedded in their shoe.

1623:  Fall off my chair.  I swear it's not my fault... it's got wheels and it rolled out from underneath me as I was shifting position.

1645:  Break.  The vending machine drops something I didn't want (I hit the wrong number) and I have to have two more tries to get the actual item I want. 

1700:  Discover the previous error in the next batch of work I do.  30 min work actually takes 3 1/2 hours to correct.

1900: (Still in the middle of that batch of work...)  Break.

1902:  Trip on the stairs.  Luckily I catch myself before I fall down them.

1903:  Discover I've forgotten to bring my meal to work.  Eat the unwanted vending machine items instead.

1930:  Back to extreme boredom fixing unnecessary errors.

2152:  Clearing up at the end of work, a co-worker accidentally hits me on the head with a plastic box.

2202:  Trip going up the stairs (still didn't fall though).

2215:  Arrive home

2220:  Start writing this blog entry.

2245:  Jar my right hand making a cup of tea.

2250:  Burn my mouth on a cup of tea.

There's still enough time left in the day for a meteor to land on my head.  I'm thinking that an imaginary god is p/o'ed that I'm celebrating Darwin Day.  Or I'm simply having a bad day.  The latter is the more likely. 


Happy Darwin Day!  Don't let {insert name of deity here} get you!


2323:  Finish blog

 
 
Current Location: waiting for the meteor
Current Mood: soresore
Current Music: Theme from Jaws
 
 
ashkara
14 January 2009 @ 12:10 pm
  1. Participated in the Blasphemy Challenge. Not online...
  2. Met at least one of the “Four Horsemen” (Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris) in person. No.
  3. Created an atheist blog. I have a blog.  I don't update it much.  It's created by an atheist.  It doesn't have much to do with atheism, but as I am an atheist and this is my blog, it must be an atheist blog...
  4. Used the Flying Spaghetti Monster in a religious debate with someone. Yeah.  That was fun.  Especially as she'd never heard of the FSM
  5. Gotten offended when someone called you an agnostic. Why is that offensive?  I am atheist.  I am also agnostic.  I don't believe in a God, therefore I am atheist.  I believe that no proof for a God can exist, therefore I am agnostic.
  6. Been unable to watch Growing Pains reruns because of Kirk Cameron. I have other motives for being unable to watch Growing Pains.  Like the fact that the show is just bad...
  7. Own more Bibles than most Christians you know. I don't know a lot of Christians, and don't know how many is a normal number.  I have 6 different versions, plus a Koran, plus the Bhagavad Gita, plus the Old Testament Apocrypha, plus I have a number of other religious texts I want to buy.
  8. Have at least one Bible with your personal annotations regarding contradictions, disturbing parts, etc. NO!  NEVER EVER EVER write in books except if you're gifting it to someone and then only on the inner cover or the flyleaf.
  9. Have come out as an atheist to your family. Still in the process.  Got to take it slowly with some family members...
  10. Attended a campus or off-campus atheist gathering. No. 
  11. Are a member of an organized atheist/Humanist/etc. organization. Yes, but due to their horrendous meeting times I'm never able to get to their meetings.
  12. Had a Humanist wedding ceremony. What is a Humanist wedding ceremony?  Is that just one that doesn't mention God?  I did that one...
  13. Donated money to an atheist organization. Not yet, but sooner or later, when I have tha cash spare...
  14. Have a bookshelf dedicated solely to Richard Dawkins. No! LOL... I have a strange sense of humour... perhaps I will put all of my religious books on one shelf and then dedicate it to him... ;)
  15. Lost the friendship of someone you know because of your non-theism. No.  Made friends because of it, yes...
  16. Tried to argue or have a discussion with someone who stopped you on the street to proselytize. No, there's no point.  Let them live in their fantasy world, if they're that far gone, who am I to disabuse them of their insanities?
  17. Had to hide your atheist beliefs on a first date because you didn’t want to scare him/her away. No.  Why would you? 
  18. Own a stockpile of atheist paraphernalia (bumper stickers, buttons, shirts, etc). No! Haha.
  19. Attended a protest that involved religion. No.
  20. Attended an atheist conference. No.
  21. Subscribe to Pat Condell’s YouTube channel. Who? No.
  22. Started an atheist group in your area or school. No.  I have too many other things to do.
  23. Successfully “de-converted” someone to atheism. Not to atheism, though I did once convert a JW to Paganism... does that count?
  24. Have already made plans to donate your body to science after you die. Haha. This is atheist, how? I'm an organ donor.  The rest of me they can do as they choose... mainly to cut down on funerary costs.
  25. Told someone you’re an atheist only because you wanted to see the person’s reaction. No.
  26. Had to think twice before screaming “Oh God!” during sex. Or you said something else in its place. Being Pagan before I was atheist, I still shout out "Oh Gods!".  There's a plural in there.  I'm not too worried about it. 
  27. Lost a job because of your atheism. No.  That's illegal in Aus.
  28. Formed a bond with someone specifically because of your mutual atheism (meeting this person at a local gathering or conference doesn’t count). Yes.  No.  Kind of... he helped me through my "de-conversion".  But that's given me an idea on new pickup lines...
  29. Have crossed “In God We Trust” off of — or put a pro-church-state-separation stamp on — dollar bills. No.
  30. Refused to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. Yep.  I got through the first line, then I realised what he was getting me to recite.  Heh, sneaky that, trying to get me to pledge allegiance to a country I was just visiting... 
  31. Said “Gesundheit!” (or nothing at all) after someone sneezed because you didn’t want to say “Bless you!” I say "bless you" and "gesundheit"... I'm a former High Priestess, that's got weight (I even sometimes cast a pentagram warding if I think it's going to tick the person off enough)
  32. Have ever chosen not to clasp your hands together out of fear someone might think you’re praying. Huh???
  33. Have turned on Christian TV because you needed something entertaining to watch. Late at night I sometimes accidentally find myself staring glazedly at Benny Hinn.  He's funny in an appalling kind of manner.
  34. Are a 2nd or 3rd (or more) generation atheist. No.
  35. Have “atheism” listed on your Facebook or dating profile — and not a euphemistic variant. Yes.
  36. Attended an atheist’s funeral (i.e. a non-religious service). I don't know any dead atheists.
  37. Subscribe to an freethought magazine (e.g. Free Inquiry, Skeptic) No.
  38. Have been interviewed by a reporter because of your atheism. No.  I'm unique but not THAT unique.
  39. Written a letter-to-the-editor about an issue related to your non-belief in God. No.
  40. Gave a friend or acquaintance a New Atheist book as a gift. No.
  41. Wear pro-atheist clothing in public. I've worn anti-Christian clothing in public... but not pro-atheist, I don't think I own any.
  42. Have invited Mormons/Jehovah’s Witnesses into your house specifically because you wanted to argue with them. Heh, I haven't had any around since I became an atheist.  I think I scared them off last time when I offered to fead their fortunes.
  43. Have been physically threatened (or beaten up) because you didn’t believe in God. No.
  44. Receive Google Alerts on “atheism” (or variants). Yes.
  45. Received fewer Christmas presents than expected because people assumed you didn’t celebrate it. No. Haha.
  46. Visited The Creation Museum or saw Ben Stein’s Expelled just so you could keep tabs on the “enemy.” No. I'm not interested in paying to see drivel.
  47. Refuse to tell anyone what your “sign” is… because it doesn’t matter at all. And this is about atheism how?  I'm a Scorpio and I was born in the year of the Tiger...  And it still doesn't matter.
  48. Are on a mailing list for a Christian organization just so you can see what they’re up to… No.
  49. Have kept your eyes open while you watched others around you pray. Yes.  When I visit my mum she takes me to church on Sundays.  I don't partake of the services, but I do offer collection plate money.
  50. Avoid even Unitarian churches because they’re too close to religion for you. I don't think we have Unitarianism in Aus...  And why would I go?
This meme comes via http://hippernicus.blogspot.com and originates at http://friendlyatheist.com

 
 
Current Mood: bouncy
 
 
ashkara
03 January 2009 @ 01:21 am
The Stupidest Things

Level 1
(X) Smoked A Cigarette
(X)Smoked A Cigar
(X) Kissed A Member Of The Same Sex

SO FAR: 3

Level 2
(X) Are / Been In Love
(X) dumped someone
(X) Shoplifted
( ) Been Fired
( ) Been In A Fist Fight

SO FAR: 6

Level 4
(X) Had A Crush On An Older Person
(X) Skipped Class
( ) Slept With A Co-worker
(X) Seen Someone / Something Die

SO FAR: 9

Level 5
(X) Had / Have A Crush On One Of Your Online Friends
( ) Been To Paris
( ) Been To Spain
(X) Been On A Plane
(X) Thrown Up From Drinking

SO FAR: 12

Level 6
(X) Eaten Sushi
( ) Been Snowboarding
(X) Met Someone BECAUSE you found them Online
(X) Been in a Mosh Pit

SO FAR: 15

Level 7
(X) Been In An Abusive Relationship
(X) Taken Pain Killers
(X) Love/loved Someone Who You Can’t Have
(X) Laid On Your Back And Watched Cloud Shapes Go By
( ) Made A Snow Angel

SO FAR: 19

Level 8
(X) Had A Tea Party
(X) flown A Kite
(X) Built A Sand Castle
(X) Gone mudding
(X) Played Dress Up

SO FAR: 24

Level 9
(X) Jumped Into A Pile Of Leaves
( ) Gone Sledding
(X) Cheated While Playing A Game
(X) Been Lonely
(X) Fallen Asleep At Work / School

SO FAR: 28

Level 10
(X) Watched The Sun Set (and rise)
( ) Felt An Earthquake
( ) Killed A Snake
(X) Set fire to something/arson
SO FAR: 30

Level 11
(X) Been Tickled
(X) Been Robbed / Vandalized
(X) Been cheated on
(X) Been Misunderstood

SO FAR: 34

Level 12
(X) Won A Contest
( ) Been Suspended From School
(X) Had Detention
( ) Been In A Car / Motorcycle Accident
( ) Been expelled from school
SO FAR: 36

Level 13
( ) Had / Have Braces
(X) Eaten a whole pint of ice cream in one night
(X) Danced in the moonlight

SO FAR : 38

Level 14
(X) Hated The Way You Look
(X) Witnessed A Crime
(X) Pole Danced
(X) Questioned Your Heart
(X) Been obsessed with post-it-notes

SO FAR: 43

Level 15
(X) Squished Barefoot Through The Mud
(X) Been Lost
(X) Been To The Opposite Side Of The World
(X) Swam In The Ocean
(X) Felt Like You Were Dying

SO FAR: 48

Level 16
(X) Cried Yourself To Sleep
(X) Played Cops And Robbers
(X) Recently Colored With Crayons / Colored Pencils / Markers
(X) Sang Karaoke
(X) Paid For A Meal With Only Coins

SO FAR: 53

Level 17
(X) Done Something You Told Yourself You Wouldn't
( ) Made Prank Phone Calls
(X) Laughed Until Some Kind Of Beverage Came Out Of Your Nose
(X) Kissed In The Rain

SO FAR: 56

Level 18
(X) Written A Letter To Santa Claus
(X) Watched The Sun Set/ sun rise With Someone You Care/Cared About
(X) Blown Bubbles
(X) Made a bonfire on the beach/ or anywhere else

SO FAR: 60

Level 19
(X) Crashed A Party
( ) Have Traveled More Than 5 Days With A Car Full Of People
(X) Gone Roller-skating / Blading
(X) Had A Wish Come True
( ) Been Humped By A Monkey
(X) went on a blind date
SO FAR: 64

Level 20
(X) Worn Pearls
(X) Jumped Off A Bridge
(X) Screamed "Penis" or "Vagina"
( ) Swam With Dolphins..

SO FAR: 67

Level 22

(X) Got Your Tongue Stuck To A Pole/Freezer/ice Cube
(X) Kicked A Fish
(X) Worn The Opposite Sex's Clothes
(X) Sat On A Roof Top
(X) Had sex on a roof top

SO FAR: 72

Level 23

(X) Screamed At The Top Of Your Lungs
( ) Done / Attempted A One-Handed Cartwheel
(X)Talked On The Phone For More Than 6 Hours
(X) Recently stayed Up for a while talking to someone you care about

SO FAR:75

Level 24

( ) Picked And Ate An Apple Right Off The Tree
(X) Climbed A Tree
(X) Had/Been In A Tree House
( ) Been scared To Watch Scary Movies Alone

SO FAR:77

Level 25

(X) Believed In Ghosts
(X) Have had More Then 30 Pairs Of Shoes
(X) Gone Streaking
( ) Visited Jail

SO FAR: 80

Level 26
(X) Been stood up on a date
(X) Played Chicken
(X) Been Pushed into a pool with all your clothes on
(X) Been Told You're Hot By A Complete Stranger
(X) Broken A Bone
(X) Been Easily Amused

SO FAR: 86

Level 27

(X) Caught A Fish Then Ate It Later
(X) Made A Porn Video/got asked to make one
(X) Caught A Butterfly
(X) Laughed So Hard You Cried
(X) Cried So Hard You Laughed

SO FAR: 91

Level 28

(X) Mooned/Flashed Someone
(X) Had Someone Moon/Flash You
(X) Cheated On A Test
(X) Forgotten Someone's Name
(X) French Braided Someone’s Hair
(X) Gone Skinny Dipping
( ) Been Kicked Out Of Your House
( ) Tried to hurt yourself

SO FAR: 97

Level 29
(X) Rode A Roller Coaster
(X) Went Scuba-Diving/Snorkeling
(X) Had A Cavity
( ) Black-Mailed Someone
(X) Been Black Mailed

SO FAR: 101

Level 31
(X) Been Used
(X) Fell Going Up The Stairs
(X) Licked A Cat
(X) Bitten Someone
(X) Licked Someone
(X) Ate alone at a restauraunt
SO FAR : 107

Level 32
(X) Been shot at/or at gunpoint
(X) Had sex in the rain
( ) Flattened someone’s tires
(X) Rode in a car/truck until the gas light came on
( ) Got five dollars or less worth of gas
( ) Had sex with an animal
(X) Eaten something past it's useby date
TOTAL: 111
 
 
Current Mood: deviousdevious