Get It? (Find out at the end)

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Welcome.  Well what a week this has been and has yet to be with Titans doing battle all over the place.  Trump/Clinton in the ol’ US of A and on Saturday the Doggies and Swanies in for the mutual kill at our AFL Grand Final, a game not understood at all outside the antipodes.  It’s like that South American ultra-fast game with a ball, wall and scoop; thrilling for the locals but for outsiders, well acquired taste comes to mind. Trump/Clinton on the other hand, we can all understand; well we think we can.  For me it continues to gobsmack me how something so conceptually simple as one man, one vote first-past-the-post good ol’ fashioned Greek Democracy can be made so impossibly complicated by a Nation who had all the thinking time in the world to divest themselves of the Brits and start with a clean sheet!  Caucuses, Primaries, Colleges, I mean..’what th’’ is that all about.  Then there seems to be placard carrying people who can swing faster than a mature party in Miami! And then there is the money; clearly Marshall McLuhan was on the money when he coined the phrase The Medium is the Message because over eighty million and one people watched the Great Debate (me being the one and I don’t think the pollsters knew that I was actually watching because they didn’t call).  This was Number One, the First of Three and, so we are told, Clinton sort of won.  But did she?  Oh the intellectuals, the do-gooders, the thinkers, Les Résonables, the Latte Lesbian Left or whatever the latest ‘Culcha Vulcha’ trendies movement as defined by the Demographers Dictionary suggests, they clearly understand Ms Clinton and forgive her email cleansing faux pas and cannot understand how anyone can imagine Trump as having ‘The Right Stuff’. But, when you look at ‘The Map’ that sorts out the States/Colleges/Primaries/and Caucuses, well why then is there such an even split?  Could it possibly be that America, the greatest social experiment in the last 300 years, is not the crucible for intellectual thought, creative illumination, and seat of scientific learning but a bull-pit where winners are grinners, climbing on the carcases commercially deceased and having the same attitude as the Greeks to the concept of taxation.  Could it possibly be that Les Résonables are in fact Les Misérables , the flotsam that has been down trodden by the Wannabe Riche Classes who hold wealth to be the only true God and you only get that when you have a benevolent White God in the second row of the deity stakes.  Are we about to see The Great Dictator rise to the pampering of the best seat in the house, White of Course, because he is reaching deep into the gene pool that can genuinely imagine the possibility of having a Kardashian on each arm?  Are we about to witness the rise of the Trumpeters akin to the military classes of the German uprising where the populous will attack the intelligentsia in swarms like Brown Shirts but in denim and Stetsons?  Will the gun rule at long last and the Trumpeters kept amused with permission-to-kill tickets and fed on a diet of Burgers and Moonshine?  America will be Great again, well within its own boarders of course, let’s not get too silly here.  We outsiders will watch Reality TV wondering if the Host, Mr Trump of course, will press ‘that button’ just because he can and watch the audience scream in rapture as the trails of ICBMs fountain out of the mid-west’s somnolent pastures and start the end.

“I have a dream” is more like a night-terror and Civil War comes to mind and whereas the military classes of old, in all jurisdictions, the police included were the gentle servants of the people, the next phase will be just the opposite.  When you have hundreds of thousands of quasi-military trained bloodstock to energise you have a potent underclass, primed to be given the authority to take as long as they pledge allegiance to The Great Dictator.

Round Two, we are told, will be the round where the gloves come off, where the underbelly of collective corruption will be unzipped for the Best Ratings Ever!  Will Trump ever actually finish a thought and make a full and complete statement?  Will Clinton wilt under the spotlight of Mr Clinton’s appetites for the internals of interns?  See you same time, same bat channel.  Oh and did you get the picture?  Dic-Tator silly

 

Such is life.  Until the next time this is Brodie Goozée

Feeling a little Crabby this week…

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We have a journalist in Australia called Annabel Crabb and very funny she is too.  She is not what you might call a comedienne but she has that obtuse vision of life that makes her observations often side splitting.  When she finds a topic that it not tickling her funny bone, one that reaches deep within her, there is still humour albeit restrained but the sadness of the topic is clear for all to see.  So this week, in the Sunday Age, she reviews the maiden speeches   of our new Senators and gives a poignant review of the first address, in this her second term, of our own Trump, only female.  Under the cloak of Parliamentary protection Hansen does what Trump does, use hearsay and the internet to ask if there is a problem.  Years ago a very clever Pharmaceutical company’s whole marketing approach was to raise a new problem so that it could deliver a solution.  It would ask something like “Are you sure you are fresh; how can you be positive?”  Then the answer “None of us can be sure unless we use Product X, only then will you know you are Fresh.”  Problem…..solution.  Hansen doesn’t need a solution to stir up the redneck, ultra-conservative, ignorant, un-read, tele-fed flotsam, she just has to ask the question.  “How can you be sure we will not be run by Sharia Law in a few years?”  “How can you be sure that Muslims will not claim benefits for multiple wives?”  “How can you be sure that the Muslims will no rise up against Christians and kill us all in our beds?” “How can you be sure they will not take all our jobs?”  Trump is the same.  “How can you be sure Clinton is not a Communist plant?  How can you be sure Clinton is not connected to ISIS?”  Because you can’t be sure then they could be truths is the response.  In the English Game of Thrones the classic response of ‘you might say that, I couldn’t possibly confirm or deny…’ is the great pot-stirrer.  Of course there is an element of truth in what Hansen says, some live by Sharia Law and like it, others hate it and most fear it but it does exist.  In Muslim countries where the law permits, multiple wives are a reality and if we end up with a Muslim majority in this country through a mass discovery of the faith by Mr and Mrs McDervish, Tappolopolous, Patrone, Wong or Huen, then her warnings will come to pass.  But the Greeks, Italians, Vietnamese, Irish and Chinese do not run this Country as a solo block, they never have and they never will.

What she has not had the courage to say because she hasn’t got the follower base is that almost all wars since the beginning of Civilization have had a Faith component.  Because smarter people had the ability to meet the ‘unexplained questions’ like ‘Where do we come from’ with stories of wonder and magic that satisfied those questions and thus control the masses, Faith has been pivotal in defining one tribe over another.  Today we do not need those parables, stories, fables to make a decision, we have access to almost all knowledge via the internet and Google doesn’t demand your abeyance, well it might make it awkward from time to time but it doesn’t control you.  The Net can help us prove anything, black is white, aliens live among us, we are going to be destroyed by a new planet.  All faiths started as a Conspiracy Theory and now you can help yourself to a Faith of any nature your mind desires; somewhere on the Net will be the Creed, Bible, Koran, book, scroll that will prove the idea to be the truth.  So now we have the internet we don’t actually need the churches, mosques and other expensive real estate.  We don’t need the hidden wealth and jobs-for-the-boys to keep the washed and clean in line.  We can now ask You Tube and take it from there. Then, we can move forward and remove all Religions from public view and visit it on demand like ebay when the need arises from the comfort of our smartphone on the train or at the desk when one should be actually working.  With that out of the way we can get down to the things that really matter like poverty.  Remove religion which will stop most wars, educate everyone on you Tube and learn how to make anything and grow anything and everyone will stay where they are and Mrs Hansen will be happy.  Such if life.  Until the next time this is Brodie Goozée

 

Feeling the cat-o-one-tale

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Welcome.  A few years back I went with one of my oldest Buddies to the Caribbean to pick up his catamaran and sail it back to Australia.  That is a story in itself but not for publication.  The Cat did arrive back in Australia and I left it in Panama arguably missing the best bit, the Canal transit, the Galapagos and Polynesia and, for me the most important, the act of stepping off a boat having sailed the Pacific.  Ever since then I have had a deep inner yen to do that passage, I have lived it in my daydreaming and REM.  I also know I will die without doing it.  Dreams are funny things aren’t they?  When you are young you lack the experience, when you are middle aged you have too many responsibilities and when you are in the sunset years you lack the funds for they are committed to feeding you and caring for your collapsing body in those final year/months.  So are dreams unfulfilled something to be sad about or just a part of reality?  Of course it is easy to say ‘what the hell, you only live once, go do it and worry about the consequences later’ but by now you have reached the age of reason and responsibility, you cannot ‘desert’ your family, you cannot be selfish, you must be sensible and prudent.  So now I live that dream vicariously through You-tube.  I watch hours of debate about cat vs mono-hull, self-building and renovation, endless monologues about what it is like at a moment in time on a sea in a boat.  I have learned a fistful of tricks, I can fix a diesel engine and sew a mainsail or install lazy-jacks.  I can vital a boat for the three-month crossing, set a drogue in a storm, read grib files and talk on SSB.  But the odd thing is I could do those in the Cat I sailed on, I just didn’t think about them.  Now, as I watch the internet movies I am starting to understand just how much I actually did know or learned from that 1,500 thousand nautical mile trip.  The Pacific was just going to be the same but longer.  I surf www Apollo Duck and find, every now and then, boats that will do the job going for a song because of someone else’s problems but because I live in Australia, I am too far from the real world to get there.  Two grand to find out that a boat is not quite right is too much to ask the bride for and in any case by the time you sort out a trip, set up a survey and do all the right things another dreamer has grabbed a standby charter flight from Northampton and arrived in Greece in 6 hours and it has cost a couple of hundred quid…..return!.

My mate did another thing, he sailed back with his children, a boy and a girl, all grown up and going their own way.  The boat was the magnet that pulled them together for a while in an adventure they would all never forget.  That was, for him, the greatest gift of all and I get it.  They no longer share the dream and my buddy rarely talks about this trip any more but I turn to him every now and again after he has returned from his radiation therapy and we talk boats and what he would have done differently on that trip.  We both remember that is was very much a case of being the ‘trip’ rather than the places visited.  I didn’t much care for the Caribbean islands as most of their population was being diddled by the few that managed with money that poured off the cruise boats. But I loved watching the rollers lifting the back of the boat, the surfing down the front of the waves, the navigation and arriving where and when you thought you would.  I learned to live with the heat and found that holding onto things on a boat was 24 hour palates with the net result of losing 15 kilos and feeling fitter even if I did smoke then.

You cannot dream away those kilos and smells.  Google maps gets you anywhere without effort and who cares if it rains on a car.  I thank your God for my access to You-tube, my dream-weaver and look forward in high expectation to your video on your sailing adventure.

Such is life.  Until the next time, this is Brodie Goozée.

My Peter Finch Moment comes and goes

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Welcome.  Every Tuesday at about quarter past seven I read the horoscope, not to me but to the tens of thousands (I wish) of listeners to my breakfast show I do on local radio.  It is one of three programs I do each week but it is the only one I do on my own.  I arrive at the station at about 10 to six and it is dark but not asleep.  After a wave of my pass and hearing the satisfactory clunk of the door opening I enter a warm space filled with sound.  From midnight to my arrival we take a feed from Canberra which, more often than not, is country music.  This feed from the Community Broadcasting Mothership and is the audio stocking filler we fill our transmission airwaves with when we are not live.  0600 is a strange hour to listen to the droning tales of lost loves, dying dogs, droughts and fires, pestilence and cattle herding but that’s what they produce so that is what we get.  In a ballet of preparation I put on the kettle in the kitchen, sign the book, go to the studio, free my assorted paraphernalia from a travel case, make a coffee, sip a coffee, leave my coffee on a window ledge outside of the studio, plug in my headphones, sort my CD, watch the clock, insert my thumb drives and CDs into their proper places, set the levels and wait for the news to complete its cycle on the half hour and then, fade out the news music and press my intro select button.  I am on air.  From 6.30 to nine o’clock there is just me, my mic, my music and the computer to give me updates on travel times, freeway delays, local and national weather.  For two and a half hours I conduct a flow of music and banter and in return get an occasional SMS message from a listener making a comment about the stuff I prattle on about.  It is a very strange thing to do run a radio program solo. You are alone and It is lonely.  You have a set number of things you have to do and a considerable amount of time available to do whatever you like, but it’s all one way, it is like talking to yourself, it is an imaginary conversation.  SOP, Standard Operating Procedure, has rules like you cannot defame someone, your whole world of politics, social and commercial topics of interest are predicated with the words ‘it is alleged’ and an insurance against a law suit.  Over colourful language like….well as I broadcast this I cannot say it can I, is heavily frowned upon and you are under pain of suspension should you ‘go over the top.’  So no Peter Finch antics from this bunny, I continue to ‘take it anymore’.  The result is a vanilla breakfast porridge of sounds and comments that allows the listeners to arise from their torpor, scratch and shuffle, empty bladders and prep themselves for their day ahead.  My 3 then 2 carefully selected tracks builds in pace and toe tapping excitement until 0900 when the clock-in bell chings like a starters gun and they are all ‘off’.  To stretch the brain matter I explore the metaphysical projections by offering my predictions for the week ahead for each of the 583,333,333.33 people there are in each star sign.  Half a billion people are going to have a ‘new romantic encounter this week and could involve a close friend or a work colleague.’  They will ‘make sure they listen to that colleagues’ or friends’ advice before following through on the romantic offing’ and this will lead to ‘a happier outcome for everyone.’  I guess the chances that someone in that half billion will have just such an experience and vouchsafe to have total belief in Capricorn for the rest of their days.  But I can also safely predict that one of those Capricornians will have no such experience and die and I will be 100% right!

I feel as if I‘kick start’ my listeners and send them off for the day tapping on steering wheels, whistling through puckering lips and smiling about the prospect of having a naughty with someone at work.  That’s what I hope for of course for I cannot see anyone.  I sit there playing the console like and instrument trying to think up witticisms, alone with just my imagination.

Such is life.  Until the next time, this is Brodie Goozée.

 

More Class than Farce

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There is an old word to do with behaviour and it is called style.  It was usually attached to people of social stature and then migrated as a monica to the moneyed nuveaux riche post industrial revolution.  Class was another such adjectival noun that in the first instance defined the social, and thereby financial/political devide, strata and then as a quality based upon uplifting values.  They are linked, Style and Class but in our egalitarian Australia I put it to you that Style now usurps Class and even that has been stolen and refers to our fashionistas.  The point is there are  some people you meet to whom you instinctively have a more than courteous  attitude, they have that certain je ne sait quois than commands a little reverence, a predisposition to respect.  Then there are those who don’t.  This week I have met both.

Both have achieved a more than an average level of financial of financial success. One is so anti a broad spectrum of socio political issues you can imagine them in another time and another place of supporting some our most lethal political regimes and in todays currency kissing the coat tails of the wannabe Trump.  The central ethic of this individual is ‘anti’.  Anti Muslim, though try suggesting the word Racists and prepare your ears for a tirade of the weirdest collection of rationales.  Anti Labour, anti Unions,  anti Left and we had only been acquainted  for the shortest of periods.  The ‘Anti’ was a furnace of intellectual bile feeding a life and blaming the world for personal outcomes.  People don’t work, , Unions kill enterprise, the smart car stays at home so the riffraff don’t point and laugh or cut him off so he drives a ute and loves the mateship of tradies nodding in appreciation when going off to work. The central anger, the I-am-better-cos-I-made-a-quid and people need to respect me was the Omega to the Alpha person I met.  Female, of immigrant class stock, worked hard with her working class but highly admired husband who died too soon.  His workforce loved him, would do anything willingly for him, never complained about meeting his tax liabilities, employed refugees of all persuasions. His and her values we noticed and admired.  A Doggies supporter for ever, she became a ‘den-mother’ and is now the VP. She surmounted the pain of his loss and did it again when her own daughter died next to her on a plane trip from America from a heart attack caused by her diabetes. She had the spur to expand her philanthropy with support for finding a cure for the disease.  She co-founded the push for girls to play footy in memory of her daughter’s passion to kick the Sherrin.  In all the time I spent with her there was not one single reference to being anti anything or anyone.  There was a calmness, a control and perhaps most of all a wisdom.  She didn’t blame her God for her woes, she and her husband flourished their business because of recognising that their workers were people, able to make mistakes and take advantage but they didn’t out of respect.

Two different experiences of two individuals that could be classified as achievers.  But when you look through the lens of Style and Class they are as opposed as Communism and Fascism, north pole to south pole.  I have had more than my fair share of meeting Omegas in my life for they are in every walk of life, all political persuasions, every financial strata.  But the Alpha, they are so rare.  The ones that try to do something on the positive side of the social ledger and do not seek adoration or attention for their good deeds.  Thinkers with heart and soul, some rich some poor; it doesn’t take wealth to earn respect, it takes wisdom and that is why there are the Cans and the Cants.

My grandfather drove trucks when he closed his business he set up a trust so all his employees’ children could get a private education.  I was a beneficiary. I was an army brat in an era when the Indian Raj ethic was alive and well.  My father became a General but he never forgot his father’s approach to his workers or his customers; respect and the promotion and search for the best in people.  Army pay never made you rich so his philanthropy was not the gift of millions but the gift of help, of kindness to all peoples.

Such is life.  Until the next time, this is Brodie Goozée.

The Medium not the Message

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Welcome,

As weeks go, I do have to say that the last one has been a bit hectic. My Local Community Radio Station in which I volunteer, has absorbed an inordinate number of hours due to people being away or having more pressing things to do.  The net result has been three 0500 risings and the delivery of a chirpy attitude to the breakfast show listeners, the panelling of an Arts program and the launch of a totally new program called The Age Stage.  Now to those not in ‘the know’ panelling is an act of switching buttons, sliding sliders so music and voice merge in a seamless ebb and flow, setting levels and clock watching.  When you panel, you say nothing, you are invisible and your reactions and thoughts about what is being talked about is of no consequence whatsoever. You are a start maker, not a star.  When you panel for your own show, well that is different.  The panel is now an instrument to be played to your tune with your music selection’s final beat gently evaporating upon the arrival of the news stream which waits for no man, nor woman, nor any other gender I suppose.  Community radio is a passion of mine because in a place like Australia it is an umbilical cord that joins the nation, particularly the rural bit.  In places where neighbours are half an hour or more away by car, popping in for a latte is not often on the schedule.  To find out what your Community is about you rely on Community Radio to deliver the news, gossip, information and scuttlebutt.  Without it you are alone with the wind, the crows, the buzzing flies and your thoughts until someone rings you on your satellite phone.  Of course it is not quite so essential on the non-rural space but we still explore boundaries that go beyond commercial bubblegum; it’s a shame we don’t earn what some of the commercial idiots earn but that’s what you sign up for.  The big earners on ‘normal’ FM are more often than not miro-trumps appealing to the ignorance of the swarm.  When they rant the unwashed listen and the unwashed become ratings and ratings becomes addictive to advertisers.  So red-necks get to hear about panty liners and all is well with the world.  Of course advertisers love noise, they cannot get enough of it which is why our Olympiads are now on a media and sponsorship merry-go-round telling the same story over and over and over.  Advertisers’ chequebooks are being waved live autograph books and those that succeeded are being set up, well not for life, but for a few months in any case.  They all disembarked their Qantas charter the other morning without a customs official in sight.  You could have flown in with enough chemicals to set you up for two lives and handed it over to grandma in the welcoming melee and no one would have been the wiser, particularly if you had won nothing and thus you would be safe knowing there was no lens pointing in your direction.  Then the awkward questions like “do you know each gold medal cost the Australian tax pay x million, how do you feel about that?”  What was the other one “…do you think you have done us proud by coming 8th in the first heat?”  On the plane coming over the Chef de Mission (she didn’t so much as cook a lamb chop by the way) might have had the presence of mind to give a lecture over the PA about delivering really clever smart-ass responses to the dumb and dumber classes of the press.  For example when asked by a person with the IQ of a cane-toad and armed with a microphone “do you think Australia deserved more for the millions it invests in sport” you might reply “certainly and if they could do a better job of masking the good stuff, boy would we give you a real return on….how much did you personally put in the tin by the way miss never-heard-of-you and do you really trowel on that face cream to cover some really bad skin condition”?  Now that would be a headline!  The poor kids will be off the main page soon and be back working as an intern bringing lattes into the boardroom so everything will go back to where it was and where it should be because…..  Such is life.  Until the next time, this is Brodie Goozée.

It’s no Joker

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This issue, for all of my selective followers, is not so much about dear old Oz but about a plea to our Comrades in the US of A. That was probably not the best start, Comrades, but surly all the Communist silliness is behind us now and we can use the phrase in talking with whom we please.  Comrades in Arms has been around well before Mr Marx stole it so I am bringing back into the conversation instead of buddies, mates, cobbers because that would be confusing for my internationals.  But I digress a little.

We have to vote in this Country and it is a jolly good idea.  Enforced voting prevents dramas like Brexit from happening and what a mess that ‘why bother’ attitude has got the Brits into.  No in Oz we must drag ourselves to the voting booths come hell or high water be it for State of Federal or you can pay the fine.  One thing we do not have, like Facebook, is a thumbs down box, one that lets the polies know we don’t like any of you bastards, you are all boring, have no original thoughts and stick together like cells in a cancer.  All we can do to show our displeasure is by drawing a comedic penis across the 3 foot long in the old money voting chit.  This is frowned upon and is not really recorded in the tally.  On voting night they do not say “For Eden Monaro, Davis The Lets Play it Again Party, 495 votes,  Peterson The Sex Part, 14002 votes, William Labour 16999 votes, Archer-Smythe Liberal 24677 votes, Penis Defacements 81 Votes” which is more the pity.  But the point is as we shuffle in the queue toward our Chamber of Consideration Booth we at lease say “I dunno, lets give the Holistic Gratification Alliance a go and see if they can do any better.”  We then make our mark and go and by some lamb chops and a bottle of plonk looking smugly at those still waiting and thinking “I bet you want to know, well I’m not telling ya!”

So I have been thinking about Alliances and Treaties and such like and I am coming to the opinion we should vote when our overseas Comrades vote to let them know what we think about them.  After all it was all jolly when we went ‘all the way with LBJ’ and we thought Ronnie and Maggie were a great double act but, well in the upcoming US election, well quite honestly we think you are possibly going a wee bit to far in even considering your Mr Trump.  Like you we all thought he was a bit of a giggle, a bit of light comedy, at the beginning of your trillion dollar count down but, well he is still there and he has, or could have, a football, one that could reshape the global map if he had a bad hair day.  There is no way of being polite about this I am afraid, we don’t like him very much and as to trust, well that is a long bow to pull.  If he gets in and wants to stick TRUMP on Airforce 1 and drop in, well, we may snigger a bit and that’s not fair on you.  We like YOU, we always have, ever since Macarthur, Doris Day and the Beachboys, but Trump….really!

Alliances and Treaties are made with people you like.  If you have a four at bridge and your partner has trustworthy and subtle openers like 1 no trump, you know where you stand, but is he or she leaves and is replaced mid game and you get a Nine Spades as an opener, well you look a little vulnerable and go all rubbery. (That’s a Bridgey thing by the way).  You get the point.  So please don’t do a Pomme trick and assume your fellow Americans will all be sensible because they may not be and we might be fired or worse sent a big bill for your Nimitz’s to potter about in our region and things are pretty tight at the moment. We vote that you vote and do it properly with no penis drawings.  We will live with whoever you choose, actually we have not choice, but we do not want to live with the one you wouldn’t have chosen but are now stuck with.  Have a nice day because Such is life.  Until the next time, this is Brodie Goozée.