Sunday, July 31, 2011

Democratic responsibility to hold an opinion

(Photos: Helen Carey Ireland, Melbourne)

Melbourne Punk Commute!!! - a counter culture cycle protest & ride from Federation Square to Parliament House, exercising our responsibility to participate in democracy...

There were:

♥ o
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* * * * * * * *30 BIKE SHARE BIKES & ANORS
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *34 ACTIVE PUNK COMMUTERS
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *SPEECHES++
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *1 HECKLER
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *MEDIA & RADIO & TV INTERVIEWS
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *NO POLICE
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *NO BOOKINGS
♥ o
(_)/ (_)
* * * * * * * *NO ARRESTS
♥ o
(_)/ (_)

...& notwithstanding the fact that only a handful of places in the world have made bicycle helmets compulsory and that the countries who lowered cyclist injury did so by preferring instead to improve the cycling environment, we still received the usual specious & predictable comparisons to 'climate change deniers' from the journos...but it was good to see them there anyway!!!

- & great to have a heckler as well!!! - now we really have 'street cred'!!!!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Melbourne Punk Commute - TOMORROW

...our voice, our concern, our ride

...see you then...

(with bells on!!!)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Starship 'Bicycle-Helmet' Enterprise

The Question:

"To what extent has Australian bicycle helmet policy been commercially driven?"


The Answer:



Whilst "wear-me-bicycle-helmet-safety-promotion" purportedly set out to pursue safety, in reality it pursued (& continues to pursue) its own interests & never the public's!

Essentially the public's best interests were negotiated into oblivion for the benefit of bicycle helmet policy contractors.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Melbourne Punk Commute - MEDIA RELEASE

(Photos: Chapel Street, South Yarra)

Bells, bicycles & BIKE-SHARE!

Q. Why has the latter flopped in Melbourne? a nutshell...

A. Bicycle helmet law!

Ignore shrill protestations trotted out by car clubs & bicycle clubs!!! - this is the reason...

...& Australians are not happy!

This Saturday 30th July 2011, 'Punk Commuters' are taking to the Melbourne streets to peacefully protest about our crippling helmet regulation.

Starting at Federation Square (12:30pm sharp), the bicycle plan is to cycle in a peaceful 'protesterly' manner along most of Swanston Street, along the Bourke Street Mall & then up the rest of Bourke Street to Parliament House and the Treasury Building.

There'll be megaphones & speeches, & of course there'll be plenty of 'ringing of bells' peacefully.

Finally the Bike-share bikes are going to get the love they deserve ♥ ♥ ♥

...& needless to mention, everyone will decide their hat-wear options!

Our democracy, our rules - let's get Australian politicians to 'once-again' recognise cyclists' right to choose whether we helmet or not!!

...& let's give Melbourne Bike-Share a chance!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Rottnest Island 1984


Our Cadel + l’avenue des Champs-Élysées + 'Advance Australia Fair' = super super stuff!!


...& jeez now I can stop being a possum & try sleeping at night again!!!...

...& put the 'family albums' away!!!!!!!!!!!

But before I do either of those...'s a somewhat fuzzy snap of perfectly 'legal' cycling Australians (one well into 2nd trimester with baby no.1!!) cycling perfectly 'legally' in Australia - the good old days!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Memories today

(Photos: my parents - Wallington, England, February 1959)

Sometimes numbers collide into anniversaries giving pause for thought.

As our baby no.4 approaches '21' it has occurred to me that my parents were '21' in this wedding photo, and that I was '21' when, 30 years ago today, my father drowned in the North Atlantic ocean after ejecting from his RAF Jaguar, and that in 5 days time it will be 30 years since I attended a wedding at St Paul's Cathedral in order to sing at the marriage of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and Lady Dianna Spencer, before I sang at my father's funeral 2 days later.

So many memories & so many decades...'s a privilege to be here to remember

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Melbourne Punk Commute - latest update

Diary update!!!

Saturday 30th July 2011 - 12:30pm till 2:00pm...

On your bikes!! - here's some new info on our 'peaceful assembly' ride!

So...after we meet at Melbourne's Federation Square, our 'man-on-the-ground-in-Melbourne' has planned that we 'make our way along a route that takes in most of Swanston Street, the Bourke Street mall and then up the rest of Bourke Street to Parliament House and the Treasury Building'.

Excitingly, our 'man-on-the-ground-in-Melbourne' goes on to report that this particular journey will give us 'maximum exposure in the CBD, especially when we ring our bells like crazy'!!!

- needless to mention there'll be some chatting on our megaphone too!!

Our democracy, our rules - our heads, our choice!!!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Keeping an "eye-out"

Given that corporations own much of the media (& a few politicians to boot), advertising is clearly a factor that makes the business of selling media highly profitable.

BUT in the running of these businesses their 'guardianship' role for freedom of press & expression has inevitably been interfered with... is such a shame that a significant proportion of media have sold out on being our 'watch-dog' of power.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Que sera, sera...!

(Photos: Prof Chris Rissel & Dr Paul Martin, base of GMT)

14:00 hrs

Governor Macquarie Tower, 1 Farrer Place, Sydney

* Square table discussion with the Hon. John Ajaka (Parliamentary secretary to Minister for Roads & Ports), Mr Lance Northey (Media advisor), Professor Chris Rissel (University of Sydney lecturer), Dr Paul Martin (Specialist anaesthetist, Brisbane) & me (?)!

* Submission submitted

* Gratefully received

* Further figures-information required & requested

* Further other-jurisdictional information on child-only helmet law required & requested

* Request that all new information be incorporated in further submission & sent to Roads & Traffic Authority soon to be Roads & Maritime Services (given rising sea-levels - joke! - well, not really; jeez, maybe they're taking 'climate change' seriously!)

* Assurances received that further meeting with today's square table parties to be arranged at point of next submission that a glimmer of change I see before the distance...on the horizon?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Lord Monckton: a legend in his own lunchbox

Full marks to Wendy Carlisle and the ABC for yesterday's Background Briefing programme on Lord Monkton (funnily enough I featured him on my blog a couple of weeks ago too!!!)

Listening to the meeting scene in Hyde Park reminded me of the desert scene in 'The Life of Brian' - it was vaguely comical at first but then it turned very ugly - unbelievably Wendy was intimidated to the point where she had to leave.

Why do we pretend in Australia that this hereditary peer (but not House of Lords member as he claimed to Adam Spencer last week) can add anything to any climate change discussion? He can't - he's a 'flat-earther' with no formal education in science other then two 'O' level certificates in school mathematics.

...& he deliberately chooses not to inform himself of details of his sponsor so that he can be free of any conflict of interest! - that doesn't work!!! - he can't believe that surely?

No matter how comforting it is for him to behave in his puerile 'ostrich' manner, he can't possibly imagine that it places him in a free & unfettered position to herald his 'bunsen-burner' musings as independent quality research.

But who cares when you're trying to get 'bums-on-seats'!

Certainly the National Press Club of Australia didn't a couple of weeks ago though I noticed on their website yesterday that since that first billing of the venerable M & his take on climate change, it's been somewhat credibly rebadged with the inclusion of Dr Richard Deniss in debate format

- now that should be fun!!!


...oh! & PS: he's a 'legend in the Galileo Movement's rather plush lunchbox' as well...!

Sunday, July 17, 2011




Dear Mr Attorney-General,

$$$ This levy is nothing more than an arbitrary tax

$$$ No way am I paying one on a bicycle helmet matter

$$$ Shouldn't the offence involve a 'victim'?

$$$ This ridiculousness is going too far!!!

$$$ 'Justice' continues her Australian retreat into the ether

Yours in utter frustration,
Freedom Cyclist

Saturday, July 16, 2011

"Follow the yellow brick road...!"

"We're off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of Roads&Ports!!!"

Yes! - next Tuesday three of us have a date with destiny!

Accompanied by a high-powered delegation consisting of the estimable Prof Chris Rissel & the dashing Dr Paul Martin, I will be making my way, by bicycle & business suit ('sigh' to the latter), to Macquarie Towers where it all happens!!

We are busily preparing a short, succinct & 'totally-to-the-point 'submission for the pollie & co.'s convenience - maybe we should draft the bill too, although on second thoughts, given it's a regulation we're endeavouring to revoke, we could probably get away with just providing a pen!!! - funtimes...

...& dare I even suggest (?) - hopeful times!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Melbourne Punk Commute - 30th July 2011

Don't miss this date for your diaries!!!

Saturday 30th July 2011 - 12:30pm till whenever...

Grab your bikes!! - we're meeting at Melbourne's Federation Square, opposite the beautiful Flinders Station (see above), before we make our way to somewhere else in Melbourne (still 'planning' that bit!) -

There is a bike share station close to Fed Square so you could grab one of those or one from another nearby bike-share stations in the area - or maybe you'll want to secure your bike beforehand since it would be such a pity to miss out if we end up having a huge rush of protestors!!! - you just never know!?!?!

Whatever; you decide your hat-wear options! - naturally!!

Our democracy, our rules - let's get Victoria to recognise our right to choose whether we helmet or not!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Section 10 dismissal & free nutritious necessity tips

When you first start making pastry with your mum, no matter how grey or lumpy your dough is it's always 'so yummy, darling; the very best; my favourite!'...

...but gradually as you bake a little bit more you appreciate that 'hot clammy hands won't do when making mince-pie pastry, dear' & that 'if the over-head ceiling fan isn't off, pet, forget it!!!'

...& so it was today when I got another 'Section 10 dismissal', I mentally made some pretty handy 'baking' notes.


...the campaign continues!!!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Judgment to be handed down 1400hrs tomorrow

* climate-change submissions delivered

* 'listened-to' & heard!

* awaiting deliberation - set for Muswellbrook Court tomorrow.

...hmmmn what to wear?...maybe something a little more 'Joan of Arc-y' for probable 'burning at stake'?!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Wish me luck as you wave me goodbye!!!

Monday 11th July 2011: Scone Local Court - Defended Hearing

Crime of not wearing bicycle helmet whilst riding bicycle


Outfit: not suit (yuck!-hate), something 'Carmen-y', evoking 'tragedy-between-mens-loos-&-paella stand' - CHECK ✓

Documents: submissions for court, police prosecutor, me; copies of 'The Guardian' on catastrophic climate change; SAI licence; helmet manual; relevant cases; relevant legislation - CHECK ✓

Supporters: one 'wary' baby no.3 - previously absent for 'moments-like-these', looking like he's wondering how he ended up being only Abbott rellie in Scone!!!, + fab 'usual-suspect-chums'- CHECK ✓

Meedya Circus: media release sent to lots of potentials - PROBABLY NOT X

...will keep you posted!!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Mike's Bikes - see this exhibition

"I've been shopping!!!" - honestly, who could resist?

So many lovely options!!!...

Mike has spoilt us rotten with his wonderful earthy exhibition (visit the Tap Gallery) detailing the wonderful earthy bicycle.

Lino cuts, rubbings, solar prints - it really could have been very hard to choose except that I frequently check out his blog & had spotted my 'must-have' item!!! (see below my 'girl reaching for her purse' on left!)

Mike's oeuvre d'art reveals the limitless potential of bicycles in our landscapes whilst simultaneously beckoning Australian society to reconnect with this medium of transport.

I love the movement & the peace, the space & the dance - I love Mike's visual poetry that makes you feel you've come home - I love the figurative platform he's provided to recreate our own narrative without the constraints of state-sanctioned fear.

PS I also love Paul Van Bellen's Gazelle bicycle featured above, & am so thrilled to be sharing a house with one now!!!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Australia, you're on notice!

(Photos: Lowy Institute, Kumi Naidoo ED Greenpeace)

As Sunday gets closer and we all wonder what will be revealed in the climate change package, Kumi Naidoo's address at the Lowy Institute yesterday challenged Australians to pick up the climate change baton and start training for the race. Passionate & engaging, Kumi said in no uncertain terms that the world has come to see Australia as a surprising laggard in climate change action.

In effect, we have lost our will to effect viable solutions, and inexplicably we continue to be swept up in dated economic practices and industries.

...& I have to say our 'meedya-circus' doesn't help either!! - especially given that they are particularly fond of Big Corpa!

Favourable access to 'meedya-circus' seems to require considerable financial resources which eliminates a significant number of worthy organisations & individuals with urgent messages to deliver.

That Lord Monckton should get a guernsey at the National Press Club later this month, diminishes the NPC claim:

'...that through the National Australia Bank Address the Press Club has developed a reputation nationally and internationally as Australia’s leading forum for the discussion of issues and debate on public policy in a lively, informative and entertaining format...'

...& notwithstanding the NPC's senior vice-president Steve Lewis' statement in the OZ that the their mission is to 'provide a civilised forum for an important debate', are the Australian community really expected to take from this that the NPC believes that:

- there is still a debate to be had on climate change?

- Lord M could actually add any cogent arguments?

- he could even contribute positively to the NPC's much-touted reputation?

No doubt Lord M will fill-up the requisite NPC tables, and be broadcast into Australian telly-rooms across the nation (if Australians can be bothered to turn over from the footy) - BUT when all's said & done, there's no escaping the fact that the blatant love-fest between 'meedya-circus' & Big Corpa ensures that the interests of the common man, woman and child are entirely superfluous to any ecological agenda.


No wonder the world has put us on notice!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

'The Tree of Life' - clarion call to arms

(Photos: 'Gum' trees from a horizontal position at Peats Ridge)

Prepare for a journey in this film but without the magic carpet; just a primeaval sadness & an existensial exhaustion...

...'grace' & 'nature' battle it out but at the 'end of the day' we discover it's all about 'love', as always - powerful stuff

...see it

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Climate change is real; unicorns are not - could someone tell the Australians?

(Photos: Greenpeace, Dr Kumi Naidoo)

Here in Australia for only a week, Dr Kumi Naidoo (Greenpeace International's ED) has undertaken an intensive schedule in a bid to warn Australians of the perils of our continued 'ostrich' behaviour.

We can no longer pretend the planet isn't in crisis, and to continue to do so will only jeopardise our own economic future, let alone our children's future - FULL STOP. The further we drop behind the other nations the more difficult it will be to catch up again. This is stuff we all know but embarrassingly we, in Australia, carry on as though 'not-facing-the-problem' might make it go away - why are we so infantile?

As Kumi noted in his 'Breakfast with Fran Kelly' interview, addressing climate change is now the new race - 'the arms and the space races are over' (thank whoever we all thank!), and the important one now will be the race concentrating on who can 'develop competence, technology, & expertise' to combat this man-made looming catastrophe in order to 'dominate in the emerging green economy.'

Equity cannot prevail when such a 'disproportionate amount of influence is exercised by the oil, gas and coal industries over politicians.' Neither can equity prevail when these industries are inexplicably given carte blanche in terms of favourable media opportunites.

How can the rest of us compete with their splashing around of 'silly' money to secure the very best lobbyists & advocates for their catastrophic projects?...& do we really comprehend that these reluctant 'climate changelings' have completely 'polluted & contaminated the global debate?'

Kumi is here in Australia to ask us a tough question:

$$$ Does Australia want a democracy where particular sectors of industry exercise a level of influence over our politicians that serves industry but not the common man, woman or child?

The world wants our answer today... will get it next Sunday

Monday, July 4, 2011

Looking for fun & feelin' groovy

♥ Winter sun

♥ Soul-mates

♥ Marrickville markets

Scrumptious tofu burgers

♥ Accoustic music

TAKE A MAGIC CARPET & GO BY BICYCLE!!!!! - safe, tranquil, & never a 'woolly mammoth' moment no matter what the RTA claims!!

- aaahhh the serenity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!