From Foxtel to Netflix: My Consumer Journey

In comparison with questions about the Two State Solution in Israel my home entertainment provider consumer journey may pale into insignificance, but it my journey just the same. Going from Foxtel to Netflix on my consumer journey has shown me certain things about the industry and myself. I drew a Customer Journey Map to illustrate the stages on my journey. The intimate nature of home entertainment means that your choices mirror parts of who you are. It used to be that we are what we eat and, now, we are what we watch on our screens. From Foxtel to Netflix: My consumer journey:

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Customer Journey Map

 

     AWARENESS        RESEARCH  EVALUATION  RECONSIDER    DECISION    
CONTEXT   My initial awareness, which prompted thinking about changing my main recreational media provider was economic. Monthly Foxtel bills of around $180 for x2 set boxes & the Platinum Package was becoming unaffordable. In addition, I had seen all the new release movies available on the Foxtel movie channels, because they were available earlier on DVD rentals, which I had accessed from a machine in my local shopping centre. The impetus for this behaviour was satisfying my 2 children’s desire to see new release movies.  Discussions with various family members & households, provided me with research material via anecdotal evidence. I experienced the Netflix streaming service on my brother’s TV set, whilst visiting him on an interstate trip to Perth. We watched a movie together with his family & the streaming service provided a fully functional audiovisual experience. He had a smart TV, which was connected online to streamline the whole experience. I do not have such a TV & realised my experience would be different on this basis.  Netflix offers a basic monthly package for one screen from as little as $9.99 & a family package of $29.99. This in comparison to my Platinum Foxtel package is a massive saving of some $100+. However, there is decidedly less content available on Netflix in all categories. The context of this consumer journey analysis will limit the focus to movies, TV shows & docos when comparing the offerings from both providers.  My set up with Netflix involves running a laptop through my TV screen. I need to use a mouse to navigate my way around programmes I am watching, this can be frustrating & inexact. This impacts negatively upon my Netflix experience. Foxtel provides super-duper remote controls & I do miss the ease of changing channels & shows. My decision to switch to Netflix as my main home entertainment provider from Foxtel, has saved me considerable money & will continue to do so. I have considered Amazon’s Prime, I signed up for a Free 30-day trial, but have already experienced that nearly all of their new release movie offerings are unavailable for Australian customers. It seems very focused on the American market.I will probably rent a few DVDs & go to the cinema more often to fill in the gaps, that Netflix cannot service.
What are you trying to do    I wanted to lower my monthly expenditure on home entertainment & refine my viewing options to remove stuff that I was paying for & not watching.  I want to find out whether switching to a streaming service like Netflix could provide me with satisfying home entertainment at a fraction of the cost I have been paying Foxtel for years for a similar service.  I have switched back & forth between the basic & family Netflix packages over the last 3 months, depending on the number of people currently residing in my household. The flexibility in changing packages is a plus in my experience with Netflix. Foxtel never felt so easy to amend its package; reductions meant a phone call to a call centre which was, obviously, undermanned. Waiting on the line probably discourages customers from reducing their packages.  My home entertainment choices have changed to watching more extended TV series & less feature films. Netflix allows you to binge on complete series, watching episode after episode. This deepens my experience of particular entertainment offerings, sometimes lasting for many hours over several nights. I probably watch less TV and read more books, which is usually more satisfying anyway. I succeeded in reducing my monthly expenditure by around $100+. I stopped paying for access to programming on Foxtel, which I was not using.I have sourced new Netflix original content, which although is uneven in quality in my opinion, which I formerly could not watch. Some good, some bad, a little like life itself.I have immersed myself in intensive home entertainment experiences, which is a new & different experience. I like intense!
Journey Stages     I initially contacted Foxtel & reduced my package by sending back one set top box. I re-contacted Foxtel about further reducing my package, but was told I could not. I then decided to completely end my Foxtel subscription, the Foxtel representative then referred me to the Loyalty Program Team. Suddenly, I was allowed to drastically reduce my package to just Sports & Entertainment for $38 per month.  After discussions with my brother & children, who both subscribe to Netflix & do not have Foxtel, I gathered impressions based on their reports both good & bad about Netflix.I, then, took the plunge, reducing my Foxtel to Sports, to feed my AFL/Sydney Swans fix (I live in South Australia & do not have access to a reliable free to air connection, which means no Swans’ games on TV).  I have been underwhelmed at the outset with the content presented by Netflix. Not many new release movies & lots of older made for TV shows. I have found myself clicking on a programme to view it & then rejecting it shortly afterwards. I have, like the Internet Dating experience online, become glazed over in ennui when trying to make a choice. Lists of offerings in categories reduce any specialness about your choice.  I watch things like ABC IView instead of Netflix, when I am sick of the glut of programmes about Americans beset by drug dealing, gun totting conflicts. I began with both economic & entertainment satisfaction problems. I relieved some of my economic pressure. I turned away from too much on tap, most of which was wasted upon me & unwatched, and found less is best.
Touchpoints(Interactions with brand, service, organisation)    I had heard from family about Netflix, as an online entertainment streaming service. However, it was only once the NBN had been connected in my area that I could take advantage of services such as these. I contacted Netflix via the internet & was offered a Free 30 day trial subscription – which I chose to take up.  I hooked up my laptop computer to my TV via a HDMI connection & launched Netflix. It wanted the usual information that most digital providers want to establish an account. This can be annoying, but is now a common fact of life in the digital age. I have fat pads full of USERNAMES & PASSWORDS for hundreds of digital accounts across the spectrum.  My experience with Netflix has been totally online & almost all positive. I have had a few browser issues, rejecting my account at the odd time, but it is difficult to ascertain whether these are IPS issues or operating system upgrade issues. I have reserved my judgement in regard to Netflix’s responsibility in these matters.  I am unrepentant in my decision to liberate myself from Foxtel, to the extent of only paying $38 per month for my AFL fix. It is no longer a bill that disturbs my fragile economy regularly. The flavour of Netflix is, I suppose, a fresh youthful one, when compared to Foxtel. New technology, new made to order content. Lots of young bland American faces overacting in poorly scripted programmes. Netflix is very young in terms of being a media organisation on the world stage.
Emotional Status (+ or -)  I felt very positive that I was reducing my monthly expenditure on home entertainment by some $100+ after many years of paying this amount. It was emotionally uplifting & liberating.  I was prepared to go cold turkey, as regards home entertainment on TV, because I had recently given up another addiction – alcohol. Watching TV, not effected by alcohol, was hard going initially anyway. Most made for TV entertainment is pretty dumb stuff & the booze blended the experience somewhat I think.  The deciding what to watch experience on Netflix can be emotionally draining. All these categories & programmes with little information to base your consumer choice upon, can become a trance like experience.  I remain buoyant in my emotional response to the saving of a $100+ I make every month. I abhor the Americanness of Netflix, but that culture overarches the whole media puzzle anyway. Occasionally I might feel clever or younger for an evening due to my consumption of Netflix, but not all that often.
Your Consumer Insights  My insight was that if you do not challenge your service providers by asking for a better deal or exactly what you want, you will never get what you want.  Netflix as purely digital provider demands more interactive data from consumers than Foxtel, which was more like a traditional entertainment provider in the mould of TV networks etc. You cannot just turn on the TV with Netflix, it takes more preparation & groundwork.Word of mouth plays the most important role in this consumer journey. Home entertainment strikes in the intimate enclave of the domestic abode.  You need to dig a little deeper, beyond judging these books by their covers (or TV programmes in this instance). I have been pleasantly surprised by some programmes, which I presumed were American (I loathe American made for TV culture), when in fact they were European & presenting quality acting & story telling.  Most stuff on TV is rubbish & we watch too much crap just because it is on or there.I have started to see more Netflix marketing on other media platforms, since I made the switch to them. It was not influential in my decision, however. Netflix is offering a good value product at the right price currently. They are short of quality content, but the two-edged sword reality tells me that more top quality programming will see higher monthly prices for subscriptions.I was aware of Netflix as a relatively new operator in the home entertainment industry, but their advertising had made little impression upon my consciousness.
Ideas and Opportunities (drivers of behaviour)  It is always good, as a consumer, to challenge service providers to come up with better packages to suit your needs.  Recommendations from existing consumers to their friends & family, earning them loyalty rewards could be very effective for providers like Netflix to attract new customers.  Netflix could be promoting their movies & TV shows more aggressively to stimulate interest in their streaming service.  Foxtel has a digital presence, which I have not explored, apart from when I was on a short holiday interstate. It would only be appropriate if I secured a much cheaper deal. I am currently content with my decision to shift to Netflix, but will monitor new arrivals in the home entertainment digital space.

 READ the FULL CONSUMER JOURNEY REPORT

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 ©Robert Hamilton

 

Sex: The Wolf & Red Riding Hood

Sex, in the twenty first century, sits as an uncomfortable bedfellow with political correctness. One can almost see grandma in her bed, with her long snout tied beneath sleeping cap, and Little Red Riding Hood gazing into her great big eyes. The wolf lies beneath the sheets, pretending to be dear old granny, just like our sexuality temporarily at bay. The grey wolf is the ancestor of every loyal dog on the planet. Humanity has tamed the wolf and bred man’s best friend. Sexuality is the primeval pathway to procreation and though tamed today, still has fangs to bare. The sexual urge is primal and directly linked to our beastly nature. Stories of werewolves and full moon madness are remnants of our strange relationship to our own sexuality.

The Company of Wolves

“One Beast and only one howls in the woods by night.

The wolf is carnivore incarnate and he’s as cunning as he is ferocious, once he’s had a taste of flesh then nothing else will do.

At night, the eyes of wolves shine like candle flames, yellowish, reddish, but that is because the pupils of their eyes fatten on darkness and catch the light from your lantern to flash it back to you – red for danger; if a wolf’s eyes reflect only moonlight, then they gleam a cold and unnatural green, a mineral, a piercing colour.”

Angela Carter, The Company of Wolves

The Wolf & Female Sexuality

The she-wolf in art has an added sexual dimension; and the wolf and female sexuality have been linked ever since. Think of the psychological themes underpinning the story of Little Red Riding Hood, with their allegorical allusions to emerging sexuality communicated via the carnality of the tale. Perrault’s original seventeenth century title was Red Cap, and that name has allusions to the clitoris and the deflowering of virginity.[20] It is in many ways, a traditional folk story about the coming of age, which has been turned into a more prudish warning of the dangers men pose to young girls. The wolf is a carnal beast and much blood is spilt, echoing the breaking of the hymen during first penetration.

“He stood in a clearing, reading his verse out loud

in his wolfy drawl, a paperback in his hairy paw,

red wine staining his bearded jaw. What big ears he had! What big eyes he had! What teeth!

In the interval, I made quite sure he spotted me,

sweet sixteen, never been, babe, waif, and brought me a drink, my first.”

Carol Ann Duffy, “Little Red- Cap”

She-Wolves in Rome

Cristina Mazzoni makes an interesting word correlation when she points out in her book, She-Wolf: The Story of a Roman Icon, the word ‘troia’ in Italian can describe a female animal, a sow, but that it is also a derogatory slang term for a female prostitute. Which is fairly run of the mill male misogynistic language; but interestingly if that word is capitalised as “Troia’, it becomes the Homeric ancient city of Troy.[29] Thus linking to the tale of the twins and the founding of Rome.

©Robert Hamilton

CONTINUED HERE

 

Plutarch: Historian or Myth Maker?

Plutarch, like many writers, told his audience what they wanted to hear. When comparing Plutarch’s account of the Osiris myth, in his Isis and Osiris, with the extant evidence from ancient Egypt, it is clear that the myth was a later development within the narrative of Egyptian religion. The textural evidence from the Egyptian civilisation represents a chronology over some three millennia from the Old Kingdom period up until the end of the Roman period. Egyptologists have found it useful to break up this enormous chronology into various sections; and this essay will analyse the extant information about the Osiris myth within the various established time periods. Plutarch, it is suggested, wrote his version of the myth around CE 120, at the latter stage of his own life. It is also constructive to keep in mind that all historians write in response to the issues of their own age when writing about the past. Plutarch’s reliability in recording the Osiris myth according to ancient Egyptian sources is particularly influenced by this fact. The cult of Isis was experiencing heightened popularity within the first centuries of the Imperial period of the Roman Empire; and this would have made the Osiris myth attractive to an author like Plutarch.[1] His decision to put the goddesses name first in the title may have been a savvy publishing move.

 Viewing Egypt Through Greek Coloured Glasses

Plutarch dedicates his account of the myth to someone called Clea, who, apparently, was a Priestess of Isis in Greece.[2] Plutarch himself, at this time, was now a Priest at Delphi; and these religious contexts are readily observable within his account of the Osiris myth. They are his motivation for writing Isis and Osiris; he is placing one of the major mythological strands of the Egyptian religious narrative within a wider conceptual paradigm of his own devising. This is strongly influenced by his Hellenism and adherence to the principals and pantheon of Greek philosophy and religion.[3] Plato is woven into this account, and his philosophy called upon to explain several key concepts.[4] Apart from Plato, as a source for Plutarch’s understanding of Egypt, he also calls upon Herodotus to explain folk lore and the etymology of certain words.[5] JG Griffiths, in his invaluable introduction and commentary to Isis and Osiris,  informs readers that Plutarch also drew upon Homer, Hesiod, Simonides, Euripides, Anaxagoras, Aristotle, Cleanthes, Theodorus and Pindar.[6] Plutarch did, also, spend some time in Egypt. Plutarch is writing for a Graeco-Roman audience; and seeking to interpret the Osiris myth within that philosophical mindset.[7] The characters within the story are given Greek names, with Seth becoming Typhon, Thoth is Hermes, Osiris is alluded to be Dionysus, Isis linked to Persephone, and Horus called Apollo by the Greeks. In many ways, Plutarch the writer is taking raw material and moulding it into a story of his own conception, to serve his own ends; reliability and sticking to his sources seem the least of his concerns.

 Greek Contextualisation Continues

“Osiris was born, and at the hour of his birth a voice issued forth saying, “The Lord of All advances to the light”. “[8]

Plutarch relates that Osiris was born on the first of the five “intercalated” days, which stand apart from the lunar calendar; and he invokes Zeus, Rhea and Cronus in his introduction to Osiris. Diodorus Siculus (90 BCE – CE 30), a near contemporary of Plutarchs, also wrote about Egypt, Osiris and Isis. Diodorus wrote in a similar vein to Plutarch about Osiris and Isis, again for a Graeco-Roman audience, placing their story in the context of the Greek gods, and relating parts of it to Dionysus and the mysteries surrounding this deity.[9] 

 

CONTINUED HERE

©Robert Hamilton

 

 

[1] J Gwyn Griffiths, Plutarch’s De Iside et Osiride, (Cardiff, 1970), p. 32.

[2] Plutarch, Isis and Osiris, (trans. FC Babbitt) Vol V, Loeb Classical Library ed of the Moralia (1936), (Updated Oct 2012) (ed. Bill Thayer) http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Plutarch/Moralia/Isis_and_Osiris*/home.html viewed 2016. p. 7.

[3] Op.cit., pp. 19, 31.

[4] Ibid, p. 32.

[5] Plutarch, Isis and Osiris, p. 13.

[6] J Gwyn Griffiths, p. 75.

[7] Ibid, p. 30.

[8] Ibid, p. 32.

[9] Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History, (trans. C.H. Oldfather), Loeb Classical Library, Vol 1, Updated 5 Aug 2016, http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Diodorus_Siculus/home.html  viewed 2016 pp. 71-73.

Pets: An ancient relationship between humans and animals

Did the people of the ancient world keep pets?

It seems highly likely that the people of the ancient world did keep pets. The fact that animals have been found buried with, or next to people, and that grave goods have also been found in the graves of animals are strong indicators of the feeling felt for these animals by the people who buried them. In addition, surviving images of animals on a leash or in close proximity to humans in ancient art also suggests that humans had relationships with these animals which could see them classified as pets.

Also, looking at it from the animal’s point of view, through the lens of the evolution of wolves into dogs, dogs have evolved into animals designed to be pets. The modern dog is, in so many cases, an incredibly loving and loyal creature to its master or owner. How would this quality have developed if the pet relationship had not begun in antiquity? Those dog breeds come in so many shapes and sizes, having been designed to be primarily a pet. White wolf evolves into a poodle, Great Dane, bulldog, dachshund, beagle, Jack Russell etc…

How would we know? What evidence would indicate this?

The anthropological evidence of the relationship of indigenous peoples to their pets, listed in the writings of James Serpell, in the chapter “Pet-keeping and animal domestication: a reappraisal” from his book In the Company of Animals, 2nd (Revised) Edition, 1996, also points to an ancient relationship between humans and their pet animals. Human beings are animals, as much as we would like to deny our mammalian reality. Our relationships with other animals are at the most fundamental level, merely, the relationship between animals.

I would also point to stronger relationships between humans and pet animals in antiquity, based on the supposition that early humans were less intellectually developed. The concerns of ancient peoples were far closer to those of their animals than they are today. People were not thinking about the latest book read, film watched or conceptually stimulating conversation shared in pre-sophisticated language and pre-written language times. The honest expression found in the eyes of an animal would reflect more closely similar feelings within their human companion.

House Therapy Now in Paperback Edition

House Therapy: Discovering Who You Really Are is now available in paperback via Amazon. For those many readers who like to hold a hard copy in their hands and feel the keen sensation of paper at their fingertips – now you can. This revised edition of House Therapy has been improved and expanded. The link between humans and our houses and what that can reveal about ourselves has never been greater. Each individual room within your domestic abode has something to say about you. It shouts out from the rooftops and whispers within our boudoirs, of things that nobody else knows about us. Do you like to have a room with a view? How much time do you spend in front of the bathroom mirror?

House Therapy Now in Paperback Edition

The answer to these questions can supply some interesting and thought provoking information of a particularly personal nature. Not a book to read aloud in too many social settings; best left to a discretionary and private examination. House Therapy unlocks family secrets and explores their psychological ramifications. A book about you at last! We all love to read things about ourselves. The perfect Christmas gift for the man and woman who has it all. The home is our temple, the place where we sacrifice and pray. Ancient pastimes, which have been modified into twenty first century activities and obsessions.

Hoarding Holds Us Back

“Become aware of the litany of your collection of possessions, don’t just leave it for the executors of your will and family members, deal with it while you are still alive and see if you really wish to hold onto this stuff. It would be good to have an annual clearing day on the calendar, where all individuals are encouraged to reappraise, reengage and possibly recycle their ‘belongings’ (interesting word association as in who belongs to who?). It is not just about throwing away old things, it is a much more involved process and could be awarded a ritualised status to acknowledge that. We invest our energy, feelings, hopes and aspirations in these things and they hold part of us in their grasp, as we have reached out and grasped these things.”

House Therapy is the kind of therapy that you can enjoy in the privacy of your own house or apartment. The walls will look different, every picture and painting reveals a message; and life will never be the same. Knowledge is power: and this book delivers. Get your copy today.

Kant Abide His Conception of Morality

“But when morality has been completely expounded (which merely imposes duties instead of providing rules for selfish desires), then first, after the moral desire to promote the summum bonum (to bring the kingdom of God to us) has been awakened, a desire founded on a law, and which could not previously arise in any selfish mind, and when for the behoof of this desire the step to religion has been taken, then this ethical doctrine may be also called a doctrine of happiness because the hope of happiness first begins with religion only.”

Immanuel Kant, The Moral Argument, in The Philosophy of Religion,(3rd ed), ed – Robert Ferm, Oxford University Press, New York & Oxford, 1998. P – 188.

First of all, this must contend as one of the longest sentences ever written, philosophically or otherwise. Deciphering sense from this dense literary construction is like pointing a flash light down a well. Kant lives and breathes so essentially within an eighteenth century Christian cultural framework that it is impossible for him to ultimately move outside of its clutches. One cannot underestimate the danger to life and reputation from doing so, at this point in time.

I ask myself, what is the highest good and who determines it to be so? Why is the highest good and supreme happiness assumed by Kant to be “the kingdom of God” being brought to us? Kant is still operating within the cultural and ethical assumptions of his age and society. You cannot truly realise the levels of cultural conditioning and brain washing imposed upon by those brought up by strongly religious families, and in this instance, vehemently intolerant religious communities.

Kant Abide His Conception of Morality

Religions take an unsophisticated intelligence, that of a small child, and coerce and condition it to a narrative involving supernatural powers (miracles) and a supreme being (God), all of which are invisible to the human eye. Through repetition and the reinforcing and comforting belief of this child’s parents and grandparents in these self-same anomalies of nature, the child comes to accept them as truths. Church services, through the aid of chanting prayers and singing hymns, all shared processes which have hypnotic effects, build a strong subjective belief, within the being, in an alternative reality to that of secular beings.

Religion is extraordinary in its influence, especially when members of particular religions scoff at the ‘so called’ ridiculous beliefs of others of a different religious persuasion. Historically, early Christians pilloried those who held traditional polytheistic, or what we now term pagan, beliefs, making fun of their ‘crazy’ belief in a pantheon of gods residing on Mount Olympus. A belief in Jesus raising people from the dead does not strike some Christians, as either highly unlikely or more simply ludicrous, but the same Christian will find the beliefs of many others as the result of foolishness or of a primitive culture – Aboriginals, Native Americans and African tribal people come to mind and their interaction with Christian missionaries.

Kant seems to say, that only when the great Christian lie, eternal happiness in heaven, is posited into the equation does the possibility of happiness enter into the outcome of performing one’s moral duty. Therefore religion provides the hope for true happiness.

 “That in the order of ends, man (and with him every rational being) is an end in himself, that is, that he can never be used merely as a means by any (not even by God) without being at the same time an end also to himself, that therefore humanity in our person must be holy to ourselves, this follows now of itself because he is the subject of the moral law, in other words, of that which is holy in itself, and on account of which and in agreement with which alone can anything be termed holy.”

Immanuel Kant, The Moral Argument, in The Philosophy of Religion,(3rd ed), ed – Robert Ferm, Oxford University Press, New York & Oxford, 1998. P – 189.

What is it with Kant, is he allergic to the full stop? Does the highest good find the period to be anathema to its description? Perhaps God could put his or her hand up to be his editor.

In this excerpt Kant is proposing the sanctity of humanity over that of the imaginary God, therefore he is refuting the need for religious belief or religious law to uphold humanities morality. I sense that Kant was moving away from a belief in a supreme being but that he still recognised the dangers of publishing work which was entirely of that argument; he retained a bet each way to protect himself.

The belief in free will always strikes me as somewhat ironic, at this time, due to the considerable coercion employed by the Christian powers and the heavy cultural conditioning imposed by these communities upon their individual members. What free will?

EJ Whitten Legends Football Match Travesty

Ted Whitten was from my limited perception of the man, a ridgy didge good footballer, who played passionately for club and state. It is great that lots of money is being raised for charities from this annual match. The AFL upped the ante on the publicising of this football game by legislating a bye for all finalists a week before the finals. The intense focus of the media’s glare on this ‘bit of fun’ has turned a non-entity into something front of house. It has come up very short of the mark.

EJ Whitten Legends Football Match Travesty

There were two token newby female AFL players in the match, one, conveniently on each team. Abbie Holmes was listed to play well ahead of the match, but a certain Nobel lady for the Vics starred as well; and must have come in late. These very attractive, fit looking, women, who we are told, will be playing in the inaugural Women’s AFL National Competition next year. People, who like watching athletic looking women playing the Australian game are anticipating the start of this scheduled 2017 competition. Seeing predominantly overweight old blokes running around in a bit of hit and giggle is one thing. Having them hand off, repetitiously, chances for these two girls in front of goals, as if they were (apologies to the wonderful disabled Olympians) disabled, was demeaning to women athletes everywhere.

Imagine, if these ex-champion footballers were, in their hail fellow well-met spirit, giving off lollypop handballs to disabled AFL footballers in wheelchairs in front of goal, or exactly, just two of these token, unfortunates, for the benefit of the TV cameras. How would the enlightened world view the patronising behaviour of these broken down ex-gladiators of the game? Big Brian Taylor, so lacking in courage he stays safely behind the commentator’s microphone, has a big mouth when it comes to criticising those that play. He, to be fair to him, does not sound like a supporter of the concept itself, but what he does is carp at the efforts of those who give it their all.

Perhaps, it is hard for these old warriors to understand that their time in the sun is over and that the game has come to inspire new people. AFL is a mighty game; and it has been the provenance of white Anglo-Saxon males for many years. Now, it is time for the girls to play, time for new Australians to play, time for the long beleaguered Aboriginal players to take their place as the naturally talented champions of the game. Football is no longer the exclusive realm of alpha males, who made the team in decade’s past, it is now a game for all, men, women, gays, minorities and more.

Let’s also lose the bullshit, “I am not trying”, clowning around, supposed compulsory attitude toward playing in this entertaining game. If you pull on the jumper, man up, and play the game, stop denigrating those that can still play. The fans appreciate a game, not a monstrosity. There is nothing wrong with being a fat bastard, as long as you run your fat guts out trying to get the ball. Don’t belittle the women who are willing to give their all, just because your time is done. Don’t listen to the big mouths who want to make all other forms of football inept and permanently amateur. They are poor examples of some comedic Bob Hope idea gone obsolete. Brian Taylor you are less than a joke.

Attitudes of dumb footballers must be consigned to the dumpster; and the visionary leaders of this game must continue to take the greatest game of all beyond the confines of the merely physically talented.

Beware Those Who Dress Up: Like George Pell

By Robert Hamilton

We live in an age, where those who seek to define themselves as different from the rest of us, often do so by their dress. The particular ‘they’ I am talking about, do so by dressing in robes, when the rest of us are content to dress in a fairly nondescript fashion. Clothing has, for the general population in the last century, like language itself, become more and more functional, and so those few groups who still abide by stylized uniforms really stand out. None more than those who profess to be religious, men and women of the cloth, so to speak. Beware those who dress up: like George Pell; because they putting their own organisation’s values over the individual and the communities.

Scientifically speaking, we are monkeys who have evolved to make sounds, which now form recognizable languages. We now also wear clothes to hide our nakedness, but we all still have bottoms, and penises and vaginas, depending upon our sex. We still, if truth be told, like nothing more than to use these genitals to enjoy ourselves, and far less often these days, to procreate. Nothing too radical so far that anyone can honestly disagree with, but those of us who like to dress up and pretend that they are not of this ‘monkey brethren’, see it differently. Whether they be dressed like a Catholic cardinal, for instance like our own Cardinal, George Pell, or perhaps emblazoned in the orange robes of a Tibetan Rimpoche, these folk tell us that they have put aside their humanity or base monkeyness to focus on the idea of God inside their heads. We are assured that their idea is more powerful than their own humanity.

Of late (and really it has not been only of late, it is indeed a rich tradition, it is simply that their abuse and lies are no longer secrets), we have seen these religious fakirs , who have professed the transcendence of their genitals, being caught out in the worst kind of sexual exploitation of our most innocent community members – children. Christian ministers of all persuasions, and clergy from a wide array of religions, have been exposed as pedophiles to such an extent, that we in the community are entitled to an explanation. An explanation beyond the band-aid compensation and business as usual excuses, currently being offered. I mean, imagine if a corporation, or an entire industry, was exposed as home to purveyors of criminal sexual behaviour to the level that we see these religious people being exposed as, we would demand an Inquiry. We should be asking, what are the factors that cause their members to be so prone to be multiple, repeat, child sex offenders? Why do we blindly let these heinous crimes mount up and up, without any Inquiry or indeed action that could lead to a solution? Is compensation justified for these victims of sexual abuse?

It seems, a robe or cassock, is a means to be judged at an entirely different level to the rest of us, and that religion has become a blind spot for a civilization that professes to be an enlightened one, or at least a post modernist, post, post, (where has that last post sign gone) civilization. When are we going to wake-up as a society, and banish the possibility of clergy polluting the deepest private recesses of our most vulnerable? Religion, being a fog of unscientific beliefs, whose existence is predicated on the constantly PR boosted idea that we are dependent upon a God – who, in my humble opinion, consistently fails to live up to his or her factuality. I mean if God was the CEO of a particular corporation or industry body, he could not have been more let down by his representatives, according to their own industry standards. What is the ratio of good deeds versus the evil of pedophilia, I wonder?

Beware those who dress up: like George Pell…

Continued in Disciple: Rajneesh Rover – A Collection of My Writing on Spirit and Life

Readers may also be interested in reading:

God Is In The Way: Monotheism a Dysfunctional Deity

 

Online Content by Aussie Writers More Effective

Having your online content written for your Australian website by Australian writers imbues your website with a different level of readability. It is becoming more widely known, now, that Google ranks pages with an awareness of the quality of the digital copy inherent within it. Content written in the third world for peanuts by writers with English as a second language will not ultimately deliver the SEO you desire. As digital content becomes more and more important for online marketing the bar will continue to be set higher by Google. There is an old saying, “you get what you pay for in this life.”

Serious businesses in the Western sphere utilise local talent to bolster their digital presence. Every web page and post represents your company or business. Digital marketers see websites as virtual sales people with the landing page as their first pitch. If your online copy has all the sparkle of an English lesson in a migrant centre, then you are probably deterring customers away from your business. Good sales people know that if you employ a technique, where you mirror the language used by your ‘mark’ in your pitch, you increase the chances of making a sale by some 200%. Only a local can effectively capture the nuance and inflection in the Australian idiom.

Think about how you smile to yourself when you come across an obvious spelling mistake on the menu in your favourite Thai or Japanese restaurant. They get away with it because you get to eat their delicious food, but in the virtual world you are left with only the poorly constructed sentences and awkward expressions. Language and narrative is what much of our lives are made up of, and if your website is not telling a brilliant story, well readers will go elsewhere. There are now more than a billion websites worldwide and that figure is growing exponentially.

Australian writers are not expensive and they are more productive in terms of time taken to research a topic and then producing effective copy. Well written content attracts the attention of search engines and then delivers sales enquiries. Make your website a star sales performer by enabling it with gifted content. Good copy equals more sales. Effective communication created by a local will outperform wooden words laid down by a stranger to our lands. Let the skilled writers who have grown up with the mother tongue invoke magic on your behalf. It behooves me to make this entreaty on their behalf and on yours. Get the gist of the argument?

Adam Goodes Victim of Tall Poppy Syndrome

Indigenous AFL star, Adam Goodes, finds himself the victim of Australia’s very own Tall Poppy Syndrome (TPS). Aussie PM Tony Abbott guaranteed Goodes would fall victim to this curse by making Adam Austalian of the Year in 2014. Australians, generally, don’t like being told who to admire or appreciate, and when a currently playing footballer from a historically denigrated racial minority is elevated to numero uno, well we are witnessing the result.

I liken the situation to Australia’s first female prime minister, Julia Gillard, and just look at the mysogynistic back lash she copped. Similarly, when global climate change was trendy in Australia and PM Rudd made his undeliverable commitment to a solution to that, well again, the back lash from the conservative forces was profound. Women and green policies can have their fifteen minutes of fame in Australia, and maybe an Aboriginal sportsman as well, but the shadow side of this nation will have its revenge post-haste.

There is a nasty core of rascist, mysogynistic and conservative people inhabiting Australia, and they find their voice at times such as these. When they have a white, male, budgie smuggler wearing, hero in the lodge, the not so poor white trash of Australia has the courage to stand up for its beliefs. Minorities not keeping to their place beware, uppity women and indigenous sporting stars you will be heckled and booed.

Politically correct behaviour is only skin deep in this country. Tribal affiliations, like which footy team you barrack for, run much deeper, and stir the passions to let these folk vent their bile on those who dare to speak above their station in life. Aboriginal football players should not have any opinions apart from those which are footy related, in the view of these dinky di Aussies. The TPS curse seeks to cut down greatness in this country and direct our attention toward equitable mediocrity.

Now, we are hearing that Adam Goodes is a sook because he complains about being booed for a whole year at every AFL ground he plays on. Overweight white kids at the footy should be able to boo this dual Brownlow medalist freely, because that is the nature of the spectator at our indigenous game. Angry men and women should be able to boo this champion of the game because that is what we go to the footy for, to release our pent up frustrations. Well, maybe things have changed, maybe times have changed, and maybe that is not what footy is all about anymore.

What does Tony Abbott have to say about the treatment of his Australian of the Year now?