(If it could) a foetus speaks


Original audio source (LOR_18_11_05.mp3)

They all take care of me: the church, the state, the doctors and judges. For nine months they all wish me the best. I am something precious and they protect me.

As an unborn I am supposed to grow and flourish. Ignorant as to my gender, my language and my race -- with meals on tap and free bed and board -- I can have a good time without worrying about what tomorrow brings. You see, we unborn get it good even if we don't know who we are.

Come to think of it -- and thinking is something I'm not usually noted for -- for all I know I could be an orangutan or some other life form as my zoological attributes are presently unapparent to me. Such ready scholarship is not my forte and besides I am yet to learn to read or speak and have no idea what my kind looks like.

But let's assume I possess 23 chromosomes and may pass my born days as human. Give me nine months to get my X's and XY's together and I'll be dilated to meet you.

In the meantime, they all take care of me: the church, the state, the doctors and judges. If someone should get it into their head to harm me, she (it is usually a "she" apparently) had better watch out. I belong to the state. The church owns my soul. And the doctors and judges ensure that nobody inflicts pain on me.

But after nine months I'm on my own. For 50 years of my life to come nobody will care for me. I'll just have to help myself. A job? It'll be up to me. An education? That's something my parents should pay for. If I should steal for my own relief, a judge will put me in jail. If I am desperate the church will comfort me, but it won't get me a job, or feed me, or house me. Don't harm others, I'll be told, especially not the unborn.

Encouraged by this message I may make a good fist of it. If of a religious persuasion and fostered by the church I may be enrolled in the God-Man-Boy-Love Association because the church abhors abortion much more than it does paedophilia.

As I said, it will be up to me. Pretty soon I'll be on my own and my transgressions will be my own fault. But for the time being, while I remain trapped in this woman's body, I'm everybody's business but hers.

To be cared for by so many is a wonderful feeling. (Whatever that is. I have not, as yet, experienced an emotion but I'm looking forward to it). For nine months I'm the apple of everyone's eye. Don't mess with the foetus, they'll say, that's where babies come from (and babies grow up to be workers and soldiers).

People who I don't know and whom I may never meet are watching over me. Aren't I the lucky one? But tell me: why doesn't it stay this way?
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Coming out.

I admit to it. It was some time ago when I first realised that despite the pressure of my friends and family it was time for me to come to some resolution, if only at first for my own peace of mind. Once I had got that right in my head, all the rest seemed to follow. I knew straightaway what I wanted to be by recognising what I had become -- perhaps slowly at first and then with greater clarity.

But that was the easy part because you can never be one just by yourself. Saying you are in itself won't change things at all. You have to do it. You have to act it out publicly; otherwise you let yourself down and the expectations you have of yourself. Simply changing your label isn't enough.

So it's more than coming out. You can't do it alone and certainly not in private.

And after all these years I am still a practising Socialist. Outwardly I look the same, but when I'm on a roll I'm at it hammer and sickle.

It's true that we tend to be shunned in polite society. I admit that. There are some that pretend we aren't there, that we somehow don't exist just so that their sleep won't be disturbed. Ours, unfortunately, is the politics that is not supposed to speak its name.

My parents initially thought it was just a phase I was going through. “Don't worry, Alice”, my father would tell my mother, “he'll grow out of it. He'll meet a nice girl and settle down.” But I never did grow out of it. Once I got used to it, it became addictive and seemed to fit me like a glove. I couldn't get enough of it. All my social frustrations and desires could be channeled into this ready-made outlet I grew to love.

Despite the phobia you may share about us, maybe sometimes you have wondered: what does Dave Riley do with the nice folk he marches with? I'm sure it has crossed your mind on occasion.

In reply, I can say that some of my best friends are Socialists, and I've always found them to be a great bunch of people. We have our moments of high passion each time a festival of the oppressed comes our way and we really get to come into our own. Other times it's simply a case of keeping your finger on the social pulse. We are, you see, as much social as socialist and will always respond if we think we can lend a hand. When passions are inflamed, we Socialists can be very empathetic.

To you this must seem like a very serious business. Partying the way we do it -- so energetically and with such relentlessness -- may seem no way to party at all. But that's the way we like it. When you come out like we do(and come on so strong too) you don't want grass to grow under your feet.

I am often asked if I was born this way. Much as you may think I am different, unusual or queer, I am basically just like anyone else. The world made me what I am today, and it is the world that stops me wanting to change. I'd rather change it than me. That's what I get off on, if you really want to know.

Despite your impressions, Socialiism lasts longer than sex.


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The Blather is back

Things wax and wane in this world. And as fate would have it we are now being piloted through terrestrial political space by their nibs, Rudd, Swan, Gillard and sundry endorsed others who have taken upon themselves the task of captaining the good ship of state.

...and all who sail in her.

Such as me.

I cannot help myself but a quickening and a yearning is upon me and I'm unable to resist the urge to partake of my Ratbag persona and once again give in to a mordant obsession with our collective political lot.

Is this a good thing, do you think? Is it healthy to partake of my sarcastic urges and pretend, once again, than Mrs Riley's son is a satirist?

As it is writ:"Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their own."

So true. So true. Satirists are always right. It is the attitude that must to be fueled by brazen arrogance.

And I am 'always right' when I'm in that mode -- that is , when i want to be.

But other times when it's just me being me I'll be ever so humble. True dinks! And I'll be wrong! Definitely. I'm sure I will. It's guaranteed.

[Thinks:So long as I don't get the two attitudes mixed up].

Given these hastily conceived provisos, we can now announce that The Blather is back in business . (Although, I warn you that you'll have to bare with me as I find my voice which is around here somewhere...)

Blather March 17th, 2008

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Blathering all the time

Subscribe to The Blather
Not sure? Are you in in two minds as to whether you'll subscribe to Ratbag Radio? You're asking yourself perhaps,"Can this stuff damage my ears, addle my brain, or expose me to sounds I really don't want inside my head?"

You're thinking,"Ratbaggery --can I risk it?"

Sure you can. Sample the wares. Check out The Blather by listening to this promo. It won't tell you a darn thing worth knowing but it sure has all the attitude you could ask for. So come on: stick it in your ear!

It will take less than a minute to play.

* 51 secs 64kbps 401KB 24kHz

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A Note regarding iTunes

iTunes still has The Blather listed as "Ratbag Radio" so that's what you need to search for in the iTunes Store to loate The Blather in the iTunes podcast catalogue.

  1. Open iTunes on your computer
  2. Under the “Advanced” menu, select “Subscribe to Podcast…”
  3. In the window that opens, paste this URL: http://feeds.feedburner.com/RatbagRadioBlog
  4. Click the “OK”button
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The Blather #17 - Going nuclear...

This episode of The Blather considers the energy conundrum and asks Professor Ian Lowe what gives with this push for nuclear power in Australia. Before we get to the prof we have a bit of fun.
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10.92 MB / 19 min 5 secs / 80 kbps /4 khz / mono

Further reading
  • ANTSO report:Introducing Nuclear Power to Australia
  • Edited transcript of the interview with Ian Lowe

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    The Blather #16 - "From within the Shadow of the Golden Circle cannery..."

    This episode of The Blather explores the geography of our opening phrase; “From within the shadow of the Golden Circle Cannery...” as an excuse to test walk Ratbag Radio’s new recording setup around our neighborhood.

    24 min 13 sec / 80 kbps / 44kHz / 13.86 MB / Mono


    The Blather's recording rig:

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    The Blather #15 -- Choosing with Work Choices

    The Blather considers its options in regard to Work Choices -- the new industrial relations package bought in by the Australian federal government. The Blather also attends a boisterous Mayday event and learns, along with some proletarian others, to chant a special chant.

    15 mins 50 secs / 80 kbps / 32 khz / stereo /9.07 Mb

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    the blather #14 - At an anti war rally

    The Blather goes to an antiwar rally on March 18th and talks with participants who are protesting against the continuing occupation of Iraq. This event marks the third anniversary of the invasion and the protest in Brisbane , Australia,was one of thousands world wide.

    15 min 22 secs / 7.04 MB / Mono / 64 kbps / 44 kHz

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