Soapbox Speakers

News for Speakers’ Corner, Sunday 14th October.

In News for Speakers' Corner on October 15, 2018 at 12:33 pm

“A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kickboxing.”
Emo Philips.

1. It was a torrid day. We had to contend with loud music from a function nearby, and with Mirko. It was hard to tell which was the more disturbing.

During a break in the music, one passer-by chose to hurt the delicate Mr B’s feelings by criticising his dress sense. Admittedly, Mr B was wearing a bright pink shirt but he looked stylish in it. When the delicate Mr B had finally become a broken man, the fellow asked if he could speak. Mr B let him.

The man (who wisely chose to remain anonymous) spoke mainly about socialism, and did a good job of it. Here he is trying to talk about phone addiction. See what I mean about Mirko.

2. Remember that this coming Sunday the Royals, Harry and Meghan, will be at Speakers’ Corner discussing with Mr B and his grasshoppers whether or not Australia should become a republic.

Granted, there has been no confirmation that they will be there, but that is to be expected, for security concerns.

This scribe suspects that neither Harry nor Meghan could give a stuff about whether or not Australia becomes a republic. If anything, they would suggest that it does. But Mr B informs me that his real intention is to persuade the Royal family to give up the throne entirely.

3. Art Gallery Road will be closed. There will be a cycling race for the Invictus Games.

There is a good possibility that the usual chairs will not be provided.

4. Here are some of Mr B’s policies for when he becomes Prime Minister/dictator:
– Improved animal welfare for farmed animals. Uncle Pete wanted to know if that included humans. Uncle Pete: if there are humans being farmed somewhere, please let us know.
Peter the Younger thought Louie the Fly should be protected as well. That’s the type of rubbish the speakers have to endure at Speakers’ Corner.

– One of the big cities in Australia should ban all gambling and alcohol, for all the people who would like to live in such a place.

– People should be given a limited amount of electricity to use each week. When they run out they are in darkness until the new week begins. That would prompt them to learn how to switch off unnecessary lights! And, it would encourage the uptake of renewable energy sources.

– Mr B wants us to punish corporate criminals by hitting them where it hurts: at their need for status. They would be forced to live in a fibro house in an outer suburb, and drive a twenty year-old car. That way, they would have to learn to base their self-worth on factors other than money and status.

There were other policies, and they also received a lot of flak. That didn’t faze him.

5. Psychic premonitions? Have you ever heard of someone dreaming of someone they know dying, and then discovering that the person they dreamt about did indeed die during the night?

6. Mr B outlined the ontological argument for the existence of God: “The very concept of a perfect being leads inevitably to the existence of that being, because to not exist would be an imperfection.”

The trouble with that argument is that it could apply to anything. The very concept of a perfect flying elephant would lead to the existence of that flying elephant, because to not exist would be an imperfection.

Anselm of Canterbury came up with that gem in the 11th century. Here is his seal.

7. Other subjects discussed:
– When news broadcasters report on a natural disaster, each day the estimated death toll grows higher. That means the first few are inaccurate. Mr B suggested that if they are going to be inaccurate, they might as well start high – at a million lives lost – and as more information is revealed we can happily learn that the death toll isn’t as bad as we thought.
For some reason, two grasshoppers felt the need to point out that this was a bad idea.

– Are schoolgirls prevented from running and playing like boys because they have to wear a dress? If so, why don’t we make girls wear pants like the boys do?

– Steve Maxwell discussed the existence of soles.

– Are politicians really as bad as most people seem to think they are? Steve Maxwell argued that they aren’t, and that we shouldn’t complain about politicians unless we ourselves have tried to be elected. Mr B took umbrage with that.

– Why precisely was the ‘Everest’ fiasco on Sydney’s Corporoate Billboard the wrong thing to do? Why was Prime Minister Scott Morrison wrong to say it was a ‘no brainer’ to advertise? Mr B explained why.

– “Why are so few women believed when they say they have been raped?” was one question asked and discussed.
Here is a postcard from the Postsecret website.

8. In our Unusual Creature Series we have chosen to bring your attention to the saiga antelope, who has never heard of Facebook, much less our Facebook page.

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