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Name: Antony Loewenstein
Home: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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Saturday, October 22, 2005

Defining a nation

84 Comments:

Blogger Shabadoo said...

Is it just me or is this ridiculously racist?

What's the point, anyway?

Saturday, October 22, 2005 5:30:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

My thoughts exactly. Wtf is your profound observation here, Antony?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 12:50:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Incredibly poor taste. Is it impossible to cherish your heritage and fiercely defend your adopted home?

As you are not a noted figure, this post will not ruin your career, but don't go into politics. Unless your going as a leader of one of those fascists, isloationist ones.

Bad show.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:07:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Here's what Loewenstein had to say a few posts down :

Antony Loewenstein said...

Shab's guide to the world, bigotry part one. Must be so confronting taking on 'evil' like that?
Joker...

Monday, October 17, 2005 9:44:38 AM

Um...pot, kettle, black.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:44:00 am  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Ant's a great hypocrite, as we all know...I wonder if he'll rescind his story about the Marines 'desecrating' Taliban bodies now that there's another side to the story.

Nah, it's too comfy in his own little black-and-white worldview.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 7:10:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

It is a shame that a reputed reporter of 'fact' is too quick in his attempt to scoop the legitimate blogs.

So sad.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 8:23:00 am  
Blogger dusty_buster said...

I dont get it.What kind of Nips are those anyway? Japs, Chinese or Vietcong?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 10:53:00 am  
Blogger Caz said...

I saw the cartoon in yesterday's newspaper, but still don't understand the point. Last time I looked we have not been "over run" by Asians, if that's what the cartoon was intended to suggest. The majority of immigrants to Australia still come from Britain and Europe. No-one would "get" this cartoon if it showed lots of British people either.

The only reading of it, therefore, is some obscure racist comment.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 12:42:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Racist? Bill Leak is about as racist as Bob Brown. ie. not at all.
You poor people can't understand the cartoon? I'm a racist? The howls and screams from the usual people is hilarious.
Take another look.
And spare the faux outrage.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 12:54:00 pm  
Blogger EvilPundit said...

They're Japanese, if Mt Fuji, pagodas and cherry blossoms are any indication.

Still don't see what that has to do with defining our nation, which wasn't Japan the last time I checked.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:32:00 pm  
Blogger J F said...

Evil,

The cartoon obviously relates to Japan's unrealized plan to settle Australia back in the 1940s. Real diehards, those Japanese.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:40:00 pm  
Blogger guinsPen said...

Mt Fuji, pagodas and cherry blossoms

Exactly, but aren't they wearing those darling little Mao Jumpsuits?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:42:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

cherry blossoms

CHERRY BLOSSOMS! That's what I was thinking, on the tip of my tongue...

Someone should explain the cartoon to me, because I honestly don’t get it (much like the Thatcher cartoon)

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:47:00 pm  
Blogger TimT said...

Yo, Loewenstein - Pauline Hanson just called. They're revamping the One Nation party, and they want you to be their publicist. You'd do a great job!

Sunday, October 23, 2005 1:59:00 pm  
Blogger CB said...

Nothing like a bit of 'faux outrage' to gird the loins. Sort of like the dreamboat haircut, the fauxhawk.

I think Reak and Roewenstein were attempting some social satire. Velly witty.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:10:00 pm  
Blogger CatsGo said...

Where the hell's Austlaria?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:16:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

People. I can't say for sure what Leak had in mind...but i presume it's to do with outsourcing jobs (in the Murdoch rag last week): http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,16986977%5E601,00.html
How this is racist is beyond me.
It's a comment on a very touchy subject.
I have other interpretations - including the ever-increasing removal of jobs to other parts of Asia - but Leak, like much of his wonderful work, is both provocative and timely.
End of story. And, posting a cartoon isn't actually the same as drawing it. Rather large distinction, but that's just me.
I like Leak, I liked the cartoon.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:17:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Ant writes:

"You poor people can't understand the cartoon? I'm a racist? The howls and screams from the usual people is hilarious.
Take another look."

Does Ant actually get the cartoon? If so, why doesn't he explain? This is sort of like the brown-note episode of South Park where the kids are fighting over whether or not they know the meaning of...oh well, this is a family blog, but you know what I'm saying.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:22:00 pm  
Blogger CatsGo said...

Hmmm, I can't say for sure what Leak had in mind . . .
. . .I like the cartoon


So you like what you don't know. Interesting.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:23:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Oh wait, sorry for my comment above...Ant clearly didn't really know what the cartoon was about, but thought a bunch of slanty-eyed charicatures messing up their "L"s and "R"s is the height of humour. Maybe in 1958...

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:25:00 pm  
Blogger Andjam said...

Why Japan? It wasn't mentioned in the outsourcing article. Do they just All Look Alike to him?

Racist? Bill Leak is about as racist as Bob Brown. ie. not at all.

Is anybody on the left racist in your opinion, Antony?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:27:00 pm  
Blogger PW said...

Yes, it sure seems that the cartoon "defines Australia" much like a schizophrenic's delusions define city politics, i.e. mostly in his own mind.

I've got to remember this trick of elevating one's fevered interpretations into definitive fact though; that looks like it'll come in very handy in the future. I just need to practice doing it as condescendingly and cluelessly as Antony does. "Poor people", indeed.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:32:00 pm  
Blogger TimT said...

Antony, you posted a picture of Asians which did nothing more than make fun of a typical Asian stereotype - 'they're happy little people who can't pronounce stuff correctly'!

You provided no explanation, no context, no nothing, but gave it space on your blog.

Perhaps you'd care to explain how endorsing a stereotype in this way is not racist?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:34:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

If Antony does not see the obvious racism in this cartoon, his book is bound to be worthless. No insight whatsoever.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:37:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Blog job description:

1) explain every item so that every reader understands everything.

2) repeat 1)

3) repeat again

4) make sure RWDB come knocking. hold their hand.

5) make sure a harmless cartoon is elevated to a status it clearly doesn't deserve

6) praise george w. bush.

i'll remember these steps from now on.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:40:00 pm  
Blogger TimT said...

How to be Antony Loewenstein:

1) Post stupid racist cartoon.

2) Wait for people to criticise you.

3) Post a 'reply' to the criticism which, in fact, does not answer the criticism at all.

4) Go on your merry way.

Oh, you're doing quite nicely, Ant.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 2:50:00 pm  
Blogger Nick and Nora Charles said...

Ah, I get it. I finally get it.

The fact that the cartoon people are Asian is just a piece of misdirection. Ergo, it's not racist at all.

Pay attention people and understand the nuances. The fact that the cherry blossoms are pink is obviously a reference to the feminine side and the people in the blue jump suits refers to the masculine.

The Pagodas and Mt Fuji are, for anyone to see phallic.

The message of the cartoon is "Men and women should have sex at home".

How'd I go Ant-sy?

-- Nora

Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:05:00 pm  
Blogger EvilPundit said...

As Andjam pointed out, there was nothing about Japan in the article to which Antony referred. It did mention China, as well as Singapore -- both countries which have historical reasons to dislike Japan.

But I suppose for Bill Leak, all those slanty-eyed people who speak with funny accents are the same.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:05:00 pm  
Blogger J F said...

1) explain every item so that every reader understands everything.

No, fully understand every item you post.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:18:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

JF, it seems that Ant can't explain every post anyway, because he doesn't understand them himself...

Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:54:00 pm  
Blogger zeppenwolf said...

shabadoo: This is sort of like the brown-note episode of South Park where the kids are fighting over whether or not they know the meaning of...oh well, this is a family blog, but you know what I'm saying.

No, I don't-- I missed that episode. Nuts! Now where are those DVDs..?

More interesting still is how I ended up on this blog, written by some Lowenstein guy, who:

1) Posts an absurd cartoon which any reasonable person would find racist
2) Posts a cartoon having no point which is even remotely discernible.
3) Is emphatic that it's good, and is not racist.
4) Admits he has no idea what the cartoon is about.
5) Takes umbrage at points 1 through 4 being pointed out.

Okay, guys. So long, and thanks for all the fish!

Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:55:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

You know what's the most telling, Ant? All your usual suspects who rush in to take bullets for you when you post something silly are strangely absent on this thread. This post of yours is so on the nose that even they won't touch it. Here's a hint, Antony - this shit is not okay and has overtly racist overtones to it. A spectacular own goal, I feel.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:23:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

It's just bemusing watching you all fume.
Own goal? I'll take that advice. Off to the gulag for me.
Perhaps taking issue with Leak would be more appropriate - I didn't draw it - but why bother with that?
Ho hum.
Good night.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:43:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

Dont worry, Antony! It could be worse. You could have done a Margo and told your readers the Jews control the media, police and government!

Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:45:00 pm  
Blogger The_Real_JeffS said...

Ant, if you like something but don't understand what the "artist" was saying, how the heck can you explain it to someone who actually believes your tripe, let alone us RWDBs?

The mind boggles.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:47:00 pm  
Blogger CB said...

4.43 in the afternoon and you are saying good night? It's boring you now, isn't it? The only amusing thing here is your pathetic defence of artistic drivel.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 4:58:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 5:15:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Here's the thing, Ant. First you claim it's not a racist cartoon. Funny - everyone else seems to think it is. Suddenly, it seems as though you took some of your own medicine and have a good look at the cartoon. And - it's the darnedest thing - you start backing away from it and claiming ignorance of its meaning. If I was a betting man, I'd place a wee wager on the fact that the penny finally dropped for you. But you're not big enough to admit your breathtaking lapse of common sense - you still claim to like the cartoon, even though you continue the charade about not knowing what it's about.

Antony, don't you don't think disseminating racist work approvingly is blameworthy?

Obviously your regular allies do - they're nowhere to be seen on this thread.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 5:25:00 pm  
Blogger dusty_buster said...

Ahh!! so the cartoon demonstrates the cultural superiority of the mono-culturalist racist Japanese peoples compared to the effete multi-cultural 'mixed bastard races' of the west! sweet!! I knew that...

Sunday, October 23, 2005 5:31:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

This cartoon was not a one off: thing is he doesnt understand any of the shit he posts -- he just randomly posts and parrots all sorts of propaganda and drivel.

But then again, that would be just letting him off the hook.

Ironically, not all that long ago, he was snivelling about Pauline Hanson, Jupiter Casino and (what he made out to be) the "redneck" "racist" state of Queensland. Perhaps, it was just his way of saying that he felt right at home in Jupiters casino among all those rednecks.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 6:25:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

Hey Ant, take my advice and get rid of the comments section.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 6:26:00 pm  
Blogger dusty_buster said...

I tell ya what Ant, I'd rather those Planes were serviced in Japan than out here in Australia.
You ever owned an Aussie built or assembled car?
Get your head out of your arse and look at the facts instead of trying to score cheap points against P.M John Howard and the RULING conservative Government.
btw. I cant believe you're Jewish and hate your culture so much. You should be ashamed.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 6:45:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Ant is clearly on the horns of a dilemma here: he can

a....cut of comments and cut his traffic by 90%;
b....keep this whole blog thing going even though it is running out of gas intellectually in order to promote his book when/if it comes out to the 14 people here who will buy it;
c....drop the whole project and write a morally superior essay for New Matilda about how his precious soul was driven out of the blogging world by the right-wing death swarm.

Bets, people?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 6:48:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

wateva it is, he needs to do something to save himself from allowing people to continually make or better still expose him for the arse that he is.

Sunday, October 23, 2005 6:55:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Shab - agree broadly with the thrust of Antony's dilemma that you highlighted. He is certainly caught between the scylla of overwhelming and convincing criticism - but at least notoriety - and the charybdis of irrelevance and thus oblivion.

However, the devil is in the details. You said

even though it is running out of gas intellectually

Was the intellectual car ever gassed up or even pushed out of the garage down to the petrol station? I haven't seen Antony post anything outside of the acceptable, well-established, trendy left wing thought-agenda. Has he ever had an original thought about anything?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 7:54:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Leak is anything but a nationalist, and certainly not a racist.

Looks as though google is accidentally directing people here instead of Tim Blair's blog. What a cast of hangers-on. Got your cheap thrills yet, boys and girls?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 8:45:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

DBO, with whom I disagree but often respect, how in hell do you explain that cartoon? Or the fact that Anty posted it without, by his own admission, even understanding it?

As I've said, "Me so solly!" stereotypes went out a long, long time ago. Why do Anty and Leak get a pass?

Sunday, October 23, 2005 9:16:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Got your cheap thrills yet, boys and girls?

Cheap thrills? Hardly. The intellectual and reputational swan dive Antony just took is quite the spectacle. A word of advice, though, DBO - if I were you, I wouldn't start fighting in Loewenstein's corner on this one - as many of your allies on this blog have realised and consequently stayed well away. The kind of mud that Ant has immersed himself in over this cartoon sticks, and I shouldn't think you'd like to wear it.

As for your defence of Leak, what do you think the cartoon's about? Why do you think it's not racist? Surely its most obvious interpretation is indeed racist?

Monday, October 24, 2005 2:16:00 am  
Blogger boredinHK said...

I hardly qualify as a RWDB and have found the contents of this blog interesting and actually more balanced than Webdiary .
This cartoon however is a low point.
AL , you haven't explained at all why you reproduced it and your reasoning that you like Leak's work is irrelevant.
This image is crude racism and not much more.

Many years ago I was an english teacher in Tokyo.
One of the company's secretaries came up to me one morning , very proud she said as she had learnt a new word-
"mongrel " and then she firmly announced for the benefit of the few students waiting in the reception "as in this sentence -'You Australians are a mongrel race '"
Sure she was just making a sentence , sure you are just reproducing someone else's work.

Monday, October 24, 2005 10:30:00 am  
Blogger ulysses said...

Apart from not having the slightest idea what this means, if the first R in Australia is changed into an 'L' to indicate Japanese inability to pronounce it, so should the second.

Monday, October 24, 2005 10:54:00 am  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

I've had a busy weekend. The 'storm' over my publishing of this cartoon is instructive in many ways.
But, I can do little more than express my thoughts, place my ideas about it on the record:

The cartoon defines Australia
· We have a fear of losing our national identity (an identity we have great difficulty agreeing on or articulating).
· The cartoon is a glowing example of the way we simplify debate into racial stereotypes - something the Australian and Tim Blair are famous for.
· We deal with issues of the Other in a similar way. (have a look at the way issues in the middle east are parodied in cartoon form)
· I reproduced the cartoon here because debate about it is important.
· I think the cartoon is more a reflection on Australia and the way we view the Other, rather than a commentary on the Japanese themselves. As such it defines Australia and in the process makes sad and cruel use of stereotypical Japanese identity.
· Motivation is essential part of adjudicating issues of racism. I published a contentious illustration with discussion in mind, not approval or sanction. It is worthwhile noting that I often publish contentious information/artwork on my blog. In this case, I recognise that it would have been prudent to hold the hands of Tim Blair readers and include my opinion as a guide.
· I take severe exception to being labelled a racist.

Monday, October 24, 2005 12:22:00 pm  
Blogger 32325235345dfgdgfdg said...

I'm still not seeing how this 'defines' the nation. Maybe from where you're sitting, it's an immensely candid observation, but your three line briefing of a cartoon really pushes the boundaries of credibility now that you've imported your cherished Middle East 'Other' argument. Yep, Leak's unusually poor form here really has laid bare Australias inherent bias towards the Arabs, huh. Please inform us in advance if your 'upcoming' book contains such devastating lefty smackdown, because it really staggers the mind that a publishing house, Melbourne University or not, would be willing to print anything of yours based on the contents of this weblog. A pitiful collection of half-arsed, misrepresented, paroxysmal linkage to slightly better informed lefties. All the while carrying on a charade of transparent 'outrage' over the heavily exaggerated attempts at 'censorship' of a book that you will be lucky to offload in triple figures, including the complimentary copies that will gather dust in various Australian Uni collections.

Par for the course Loewenstein.

Monday, October 24, 2005 1:04:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Regardless, Antony is expressing the very racist idea that a national identity is important. Hitler did the same thing.

Are you trying to limit Austrailia to only god-fearing englishman? That the rest polute the austrailian identity?

Shame, shame, shame.

Monday, October 24, 2005 1:07:00 pm  
Blogger Gibbo said...

Maybe this cartoon defines YOUR Australia Ant but leave the sane people out of it.

I might be slow but I still don't understand how you got so much "meaning" out of a simplistic and overtly racist cartoon. Although, if "understanding" involves becoming like you, I'll stay ignorant thanks.

Watching this from the sidelines has been hilarious. I know no-one reads or comments here anyway (except the Blairites when you stuff up) but have you noticed the absolute lack of support from your supposed mates? Where's crazy Marilyn when you need her? Methinks you are now considered a liability.

If only backpedalling was an olympic sport...

More strength to you. John Howard appreciates your help.

Monday, October 24, 2005 2:51:00 pm  
Blogger EvilPundit said...

It took Antsy a good 36 hours to work out a politically correct answer to the question of why he posted the cartoon.

That's pretty impressive. Thinks on his feet.

Monday, October 24, 2005 3:28:00 pm  
Blogger CB said...

A busy weekend hey? Obviously not at lunch time Sunday, when you had enough time to post two other articles. Absolutely swamped. Flat out like a lizard drinking. All this attention from your avowed political opposites is stroking your ego to such a point where you have to make long-winded explanations and apologies for a stupid political cartoon.

Let us know when you've had enough.

Monday, October 24, 2005 4:32:00 pm  
Blogger HC44 said...

Qantas' consideration of the outsourcing option for it's maintenance purely reflects the commercial reality that companies like to minimise costs. This is the same as our clothing labels having the manufacturing done OS. And it isn't simply a cheap labour issue here, these off-shore maintenance facilities are probably enjoying better economies of scale than Qantas can achieve locally.

From this we get cartoons that "define our nation"? Talk about reading too much into something.

Monday, October 24, 2005 4:33:00 pm  
Blogger chris said...

Oh my god! And, like, you didn't even quote your source, Antony--and, like I bet you don't even give to charities... or recycle, or, like... scrape the black stuff off the toast when it's burned.

Lay off a bit guys! The REAL purpose of blogging is the pursuit of free, democratic speech.

Racism is stating preference for one race over another. Simply stating that Japanese people replace Ls with Rs (which is the only point I can see the cartoon making), is probably a fairly accurate generalisation. As for the Japanese setting, well the Japanese people I know who went to school and go to uni in Australia, and who mix up their Ls with Rs in fact still call Japan home.

Racism would be a concern if the accompanying headline read something like "Illiterate Japanese Sell Out to their Own National Heritage".

And anyway, shoudln't you all be complaining to the editor of the paper, or Bill Leak himself?

Monday, October 24, 2005 4:48:00 pm  
Blogger 32325235345dfgdgfdg said...

I thought a bit more about Loewenstein's claim that cartoon depictions of the 'Other' are generally quite unfair, based in delusional and hysterical scaremongering and very much a product of the hatred of the cartoonist and those who enjoy their work. A brief, but by no means complete, look through Loewenstein's archives candidly displays his very wise observation.

Here's Loewenstein partaking in this vile practice when he shows the Israeli Prime Minister with bloodied hands against one of Judaism's holiest sites. Yep, he's definately right about the outrageous use of cartoons in the blatant spread of hatred.

Here he is prematurely judging the the newly born Iraqi democatric process, a cowardly aside that has now been proven wrong, seeing as Saddam is very much alive, being defended by a star studded team of lefties Loewenstein can only ever hope to become, and just given a 40 day recess to boot. That is quite a long rope the Iraqi people are using, considering this is a man who is responsible for the deaths of up to 1 million Iraqis, Iranians and Kuwaitis. But Loewenstein has no desire to judge these people, why, thats the cartoonists job.

Here's more hot intellectual punditry by our favourite former F2 cadet, about a topic in which he is clearly a guru; tacky anti-American cartoons.

Once again, Loewenstein's very observant point is shown for all to see here when he indulges in the sins of the MSM scaremongering in New Orleans, a propogation of uninformed, uninvestigated lies that potentially led to more deaths then might otherwise have occurred had their feeding frenzy not whipped up such a climate of fear for rescuers and volunteers.

I am willing to concede this point, Loewenstein is indeed correct. The lack of intellectual integrity when we characterise the "Other" in cartoons demeans all those who partake in it.

Monday, October 24, 2005 5:00:00 pm  
Blogger TimT said...

You take 'exception to being labelled a racist'? Funny, you didn't take exception yesterday. What's changed?

A little bit less of the faux outrage, thanks.

Monday, October 24, 2005 5:06:00 pm  
Blogger dusty_buster said...

Antony? you deleted one of my posts. What's up with that?

Monday, October 24, 2005 6:50:00 pm  
Blogger Sho Fukamachi said...

Summary:

1. AL has no idea what this cartoon actually means but posted it because he likes the fact it seems to be vaguely critical of someone, maybe us

2. Many readers criticised AL for poting what seems to be quite a stereotyped and racially provocative cartoon

3. AL responded saying that although he has no idea what this cartoon means, it's good to post racially provocative content because it encourages debate.

Conclusion: AL is a posturing idiot who doesn't understand this, or anything else he writes about, and is in favour of racist speech

Well done AL! Quite a good day's work. I didn't think it possible for your credibility to actually get any lower than it was - guess you proved me wrong!

Monday, October 24, 2005 6:55:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

No idea. I havn't touched any of the bile. Ask blogger.

Monday, October 24, 2005 6:55:00 pm  
Blogger dusty_buster said...

'Bile'... Kiddin right? You mean the kind of bile you direct towards the state of Israel? Do you really think the Paleos and Arabs are going to give you a free pass for helping them out with your propaganda?
Nup, they'd cut your head off as soon as look at you.
I hate to call you 'stupid' - I prefer to think that you're just young and misinformed.

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:03:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

This is quite a display, boys and girls. Sixty comments and counting: the power of the conservative blogosphere, unleashed on blogspot and linked to all around the globe(?). Awe inspiring. ;-)

(And here we were being told that lefties take themselves too seriously.)

Anyway, has anyone thought about writing a letter to the Australian about this tremendously offensive racist cartoon? There were none published today. Perhaps there'll be some tomorrow.

I admit to not fully comprehending Leak's cartoon. I didn't fly into a stupour over it, though, and I fail to see how it warrants anyone doing so.

I am following the events at Qantas, but from a far different perspective to Leak. And if indeed Leak is postulating some kind of eighties-style left nationalism then I will take exception, to be sure. Meantime there are many other far more important issues demanding consideration.

Sho, you can add one other point to your summary: Rightist blog commenters have a lot of time on their hands.

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:05:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

I should also add that [Censored by Australian Government, probable seditious comment].

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:14:00 pm  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Cute, Dirt, real cute.

But you miss the point: the big difference between Leak and Anty is that Anty actually said that this 'defin[ed] the nation'; if he was being sarcastic or ironic, it's certainly out of form with the way he normally endorses cartoons (see Wilbourne's post above). Leak's point apparently was about Qantas, but he missed off the mark because Japan's not involved in the story and the humour is pretty lame/racist, but Anty's point...well, he's been all over the shop on that one.

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:20:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

DBO - true, we are all over it. And rightfully so.

Also notice how there's no one (bar yourself; 10/10 for loyalty, 0/10 for common sense) from the leftist blogosphere leaping to Ant's defence - which is a first. Can't say I blame them, however. If nothing else, they know a train wreck when they see one.

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:39:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Incidentally, I'm having problems visualising someone "flying into a stupour(sic)".

Monday, October 24, 2005 7:59:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Yep, missed the "stupour" when I previewed.

Monday, October 24, 2005 9:47:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Cute, Shab? *blush*

You're not too bad yourself.

Monday, October 24, 2005 9:48:00 pm  
Blogger tim maguire said...

This is all very interesting.

1) First, the obvious--the commentors post reasonable reactions based on a viewing of the cartoon. They may be right or wrong (and they recognize this), but they are not without justification.

2) Ant responds by saying, essentially, "you're all a bunch of doody-heads posting in bad faith."

3) Commentors say "huh?"

4) Ant gives a justification of the cartoon based not on anything in the cartoon, but based on his own world view, which includes giving the cartoonist the full benefit of the doubt on every issue, despite admittedly not knowing the cartoonist's intent.

So that's what Ant's attitude is all about--mindlessly defending his own. Does anybody here--Ant, DBO, or anyone else--doubt for a moment that if this exact cartoon was published by someone Ant didn't feel was in his own camp, Ant would be first and loudest among those screaming "racist!"? Never mind the fact that his actual knowledge of the underlying intent would be identical.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 12:25:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Ignatius, you neglect the origin and intent of the commenters in your assessment. Again, context is important. These are not regular readers, and their comments are neither constructive nor genuinely interested.

Your final supposition about Loewenstein's response to a hypothetical situation is groundless, unless you would like to explain further.

Oh, and how did you find Loewenstein's blog?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 7:55:00 am  
Blogger tim maguire said...

I ignored the origin and intent of the commenters on purpose. First because I don't know it and second because it's irrelevant. It has no bearing on the quality of their observations and arguments.

How I got here is irrelevant as well. For the same reason.

Maybe if you'd read what these people are saying and then think about how you feel about what they wrote, instead of the other way around (which is what you've obviously been doing), you'd learn something.

While your remarks on my final question are non-responsive (as is virtually all of what you've written), I take it you do doubt it.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 8:44:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Why, O Ignatius, are these high quality commenters not inundating other threads with their wisdom? Do you really separate intent from content?

Doubt? Yes. I have never heard Loewenstein "screaming 'Racist!'". Have you?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 8:55:00 am  
Blogger 32325235345dfgdgfdg said...

It's not that hard to find out DB0. It's called a search function. And lo and behold.

Further to the attempt to lesson his culpability for a clearly racist cartoon, it took him 3 attempts and 48 hours try and explain it, only to come up with a defense that was so clearly transperant it took me 5 minutes of looking through his archives to show what a lying weasel he was. Still no reply to that post incidently.

And even though I did come across this particular post from another blog, I happen to be a regular reader of Loewenstein, and have commented from time to time, when his rubbish required it. Usually I ignore most of his posts, meaningless links to cheap cartoonists and Israel bashing wank-fests at the Grauniad. But sometimes, his attempts at Israel bashing are so maddening I must tell him what an moron I find him, such as when he posted a picture of young girl on her wedding day in front of a tank, not knowing any context, and expected us to believe it was an indication of the WILD, UNCHECKED MILITIRIZATION OF CRAZY, EVIL ISRAEL. Give me a break, is there no lengths to which he won't stoop, even a young ladies wedding day, to tarnish Israel's name.

Same in this instance. Why funny little looking caricatures of Japanese businessmen really DEFINE THE FUCKING NATION don't they.

I find it sad that the only way Loewenstein inspires debate is by being a complete nincompoop, making the simplest of generalisations on the most complex of topics and wondering why all these "other" people are so worked up. It's a shame Loewenstein, who claims he's a journalist, knows nothing of journalistic integrity (still mythical I know). If he did, he'd find balance in his views of Israel, but his long ingrained academic-inspired beliefs, compel him to slander Israel no matter what her actions. Of all the crazy Arab preachers I see on TV calling for the slaughter of all Jews, the neo-Nazi's praising each suicide bombing, the "intellectuals" calling for the "decommissioning" if the Israeli nation, only Loewenstein and his like manage to disappointment me. Most Jews who feel Israel should be held to the highest moral standard compared to her neighbours and the rest of the world, also understand the realities of the situation on the ground, that sometimes the waters get muddied. Loewenstein doesn't get that, and what's worse, he seems to think the Arab waters are pure, because he never finds the time to balance Israels actions in light Arab ones.

Perhaps, if he managed to raise his standards a bit more, move beyond cheap cartoons and statements aimed to shock people into replying, and provide some decent Israeli/Arab insight that genuinely inpsires honest debate, he would have more readers other then those he found here in this post. The Oz blogosphere has no real discussion on this topic, because it is rather sensitive, but if he is going to cry censorship each time someone doesn't think his book should be published, or racist each time someone tells him he's wrong, then this site won't be that source.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 12:15:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

DBO :

IIRC, Loewenstein has called ibrahamav "racist" and "bigot" several times.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 6:37:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Sorry, I should have italicised the word "scream". Which would imply irrationality. I can conclude from Ibrahamav's comments that he/she is either a racist or an idiot, or simply a shit-stirrer. Perhaps a combination of the latter two. Am I screaming?

"Scream" goes along with "crazy evil Isreal". (Or that other rightist favourite, "AmeriKKKa", which I have never seen anyone write seriously.) Made up quotes that attempt to paint Loewenstein as a lunatic. A common ploy - find an individual who rants a little too much, pinch some quotes or exaggerate them, and then suggest that anyone you disagree with is as crazed as your example. Then rant, rant, rant.

In reality, a comparison between Ant's posts and those of his political opposites (Waterton's wordsmithery aside, of course) would show his prose and tone to be relatively calm and restrained. Much of the rabid ranting - "screaming" - emanates from the anti-greenie, pro-war, anti-fucking-everything tribe, usually with tongue in cheek (at least I hope). Or am I generalising now? Of course I am.

PS Waterton, did you pick up on "the lengths to which he won't stoop"? That one's a visual/linguistic nightmare. I might email Kel Richards.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 9:08:00 pm  
Blogger Gibbo said...

DBO, I sometimes find it difficult to know when you are being serious and when your are taking the piss because your not real good at either.
You want to see ranting, screaming etc? Follow the link in Wilbournes comment above you goose. Then take a quick trip to Ants mate Margo Kingstons looney tunes site for stage 2. Check out the SEIVX thread especially. It's a beauty. Then come back & talk to me about raving, screaming looneys.
Calm and restrained my bum! Your mob wins the screeching contests hands down buddy.

Go back to the top of this thread and re-read it. You can actually "hear" the moment when Ant realised that his cover was blown and he'd made a right royal cock up in front of the whole class. A classic moment in blogging. It will be like that whole "Where were you when Kennedy was shot?" thing.
Where were you when Ants pants fell down? I feel priviledged to have witnessed it first hand.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005 9:40:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

My mob, Gibbo? Whatever, "buddy". You're cock-eyed.

Go back to wherever you came from. Or will I see you on another thread here? Doubtful. Only when the boss says, yeah? What a hero.

Is your hand still under the desk?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 8:03:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Ant, next time you are looking for a provocative political cartoon I would suggest you go here and click on "Get Your War On".

Hecklers, there are still no letters in the Oz about Leak's cartoon. What gives?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 8:35:00 am  
Blogger Gibbo said...

Gee, you've gone to the insult cupboard early. Is that all you've got left? No more witty reparte? Some people are sprinters, some are stayers I suppose.

Ah-so, me so solly for inferring you were part of a "mob". I should have realised that you were, as all adolescents proclaim, an individual!

Why I no risten? Me iriot, so solly!

My hand was under the desk but as soon as I saw Ants picture I got a soft-on.
Don't worry though, yours will eventually get big enough to play with by yourself.

It's funny when kiddies try to sound all grown up. Thanks, you've brought a smile to my face.

By the way, where were you when Ants pants fell down?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 8:46:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Keep scraping the barrel, Gibbo. You are showing yourself in the usual light. Feel free to continue doing so.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 9:07:00 am  
Blogger baci_baci said...

Loewenstein,

Your position on Australia's involvement in Iraq is despicable and cowardly. How dare you wish for our defeat for some obsessive ideological agenda. Do you some sort of gratification every time someone gets killed?

By the way, the cartoon is racist. So much for being a radical progressive!

Baci

Thursday, October 27, 2005 2:36:00 pm  

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