How to Abuse a Democracy, Plebiscite Edition

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Image from chadstjames.

A plebiscite means nothing.

It is not legally binding. It has the same importance as the opinion polls on your nominal breakfast news, for that is what it amounts to: a government-sponsored opinion poll.

The result of a plebiscite, no matter how decisive, will not change the law.

What it does accomplish is starting debates around issues that no longer require debate.

By pitching a yes-or-no scenario on a topic – any topic – it artificially legitimizes both sides of the argument.

Here is an example:

Plebiscite question: The Earth is Flat, yay or nay?

Rationally, in the year 2k17, this question should not even be posed. It is not a matter of argument or debate whether the earth is flat; overwhelming evidence exist that it is. Though there is always reason for doubt, we as human beings accept small margins or error as a matter of course – otherwise we’d never go outside, since going outside meant accepting the small chance that a car might run us over.

By affording this question a forum of discussion, we are artificially amplifying the validity of the ‘earth is flat’ argument. That miniscule chance of the earth actually being flat has been elevated to a fifty-fifty – a yes or no, which is not the odds our cumulative scientific evidence would suggest.

This forced balancing of the odds doesn’t seem like a big deal at first, but we humans, as do all living creatures, make choices based on the highest chance of success. By forcefully subjecting us to this equal-importance of the two arguments, the very act of posing the question injects uncertainty and confusion into our rational consciousness.

I.e., we start believing that there is a considerable chance that the earth might be flat, despite there is no good reason for thinking so.

Effectively, posing this sort of question to the public is the equivalent of forcibly injecting irrationality into our consciousness, making us believe that somehow both sides are equally valid when it is not so.

Let’s apply this to another question:

Marriage Equality, yay or nay?

As of now, the Australian Constitution definition of “Marriage” includes marriage between persons of the same sex, while the Marriage Act 1961 does not provide for the formation or recognition of marriage between same sex couples.

A plebiscite will change neither of these. It is not a referendum; it cannot change the Constitution. It is an expression of public opinion, which supposedly holds considerable weight in changing the law, but now, with the artificial equivalence of the two sides of the argument – instigated by the very asking of this question – will forcibly change opinions.

It is not a question that needs to be asked.

The ruling of the High Court on the definition of “marriage” means that the debate has already moved past the ‘Is this acceptable’ stage. Right now we should be on the ‘How to change the law to fit the Constitution’ debate, not another ‘Is this acceptable’ opinion poll, artificially posed onto the public in order to re-argue an established result. The earth is already round. No amount of debate will make it flat again.

Unless, due to this very plebiscite, public opinion changes.

Remember, debating a yes-or-no question makes both sides appear equally valid. People who don’t care one way or the other will be presented with what appears to be a mired debate, with good reasons to lean either way, when the debate itself should no longer exist.

So really, the very act of asking for a plebiscite on Marriage Equality – when plebiscites have no legal import, when the public opinion firmly established, when the High Court decision has already moved us past the whole argument – is effectively an attempt to change the established opinion.

So we all need to be careful.

Plebiscites are not the open forums they pretend to be. Frank expressions of our opinions will not be enough – answering the question is not at all the point of this exercise.

So don’t sit back after sending in your vote. Don’t be content with just expressing your own opinion, when those who still think the earth is flat are pushing as hard as they could to change peoples’ minds.

Writing A Love Letter

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What an archaic concept.

Nowadays we don’t need words. Just eggplant and giggle-face and you are good to fuck.

That’s about two step baser than a peacock fanning its tail and twerking.

If our grandparents had access to this level of instantaneous no-reading-required hookup, there’d be a lot more entitled middle-aged men around about now – contraception what’s that? – So we must be thankful.

Be thankful and grateful for the hedonistic freedom we have in the 21st century.

No longer are we required to make connections with one another, not when the ultimate expression of intimacy is the willingness to take things up the butt.

No longer are we expected to express our emotions in coherent sentences, not when sending a GIF of two pandas fucking in a forest of bamboo conveys the same horniness…more or less.

And with our sexual needs so thoroughly satisfied, there is no more reason to talk about how the other person’s life is going, how their weekend was, why do they seem upset etc., since the purpose of these menial conversations is to lead to more fucking, and we’ve already had enough.

Confronted by this truth – the truth that there are very, very few people out there who genuinely give a shit about anything we do or feel – our first reaction is to reach for our phones with the goal of hitting the next post-coital glow. It drives all that we do.

Because no one feels lonely in the middle of an orgasm.

Thus, we keep fucking.

It is what we are born to do, after all. And the more steps we can skip to get there, the better.

Then, we complain.

Complain that no one gives a shit when we are upset and need to whine about the world treating us unfairly, about the people we sleep with not being attractive enough to make up for their bitchery. Words, blocks and block of text, hours and hours of chatting and phone calls – we send to each and every person we sort of know in the hope that someone, anyone, cares enough to care about you.

But remember, these are words. Coherent sentences. Expressions of genuine emotion.

Archaic concepts.

But it’ll be OK. Don’t worry about it.

Just keep chasing the next fuck.

It’ll make everything better.

How to Get Laid

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Get laid.

This is what you’ve been waiting for.

A decade of browsing quality memes on the interwebs later, you have finally found it: the Holy Grail, the One True Quest, the answer to the sacred question whispered in irreverent whispers by literally every living creature that walks this earth.

Here is the step-by-step guide, navigating through this intangible mire on your behalf so that you don’t have to move an inch from the comfortable nook on your bed, or wash your hands.

How to get laid:

1 – Become a brick.

2 – Use mason lines and a story pole to guide yourself into position. Use a pencil to mark on yourself the exact manner in which you would get laid.

3 – Slather yourself in mortar. Make sure to repeatedly knock yourself on the head to release any air bubbles that may be trapped in the mortar underneath.

4 – Remove excess mortar. Using the sharp end of the trowel, scrape off yourself any excess mortar that spreads beyond your joints. Holding a spade trowel at a 30-degree angle, carve small lines between your genitals and your knees. This will help protect you from the effects of precipitation.

Congratulations! You have now successfully gotten laid. Now go out there and chase your other dreams, like becoming an astronaut or participating in a nude bike ride.

How to be Happy

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Sometimes, when everyone around you is enjoying themselves, you somehow feel miserable.

Snippets of conversation drift past your fake-attentive ears – “oh this band is great, but have you heard of that band?” – and as you smile back at your friend/colleague/family member, nodding amicably, you wonder what expressions they’d have if you snatched that burrito from their greasy hand and shoved it down their throat, beans and week-old onion bits flying everywhere.

“Shut the fuck up, just stop talking shut the fuck up”, you imagine yourself saying…which is bizarre, because you are not a moody teenager anymore, you are a grown-ass adult, and you are having a silent tantrum when everyone else is having fun.

Why?

The answer is obvious – obvious but complicated, so let’s us an obfuscated and barely relevant metaphor to make it easier to understand:

In your head, there is a constant tug-of-war.

On one side, the side with all the buff dudes and sexy ladies, is a craving to be the center of the universe. “Adore me! Shower me with praises! Give me your undivided attention!” – sings the bright-winged angel sitting on your left shoulder, strumming that dainty little harpsichord.

On the other side, the side of bone-thin zombies posing as people, is an all-consuming shame. “I can’t do shit. Don’t look at me I’m ugly. Stop counting on me I have no idea what I’m doing.” – whispers the immolated demon dangling on your right shoulder, charred skin peeling from its crooked face.

How you feel at any moment depends on which side is winning. For some people, one of these sides is naturally stronger than the other; for others, the two sides go at it with such zealous enthusiasm that the ropes swings back and forth three times a minute.

Being on the angel’s side naturally makes you happy. “Oh boy! They’re all paying attention to me, asking how my day was!” “Oh man I am so important, look at my achievements and my pile of money!” – These are universal feel-good moments.

It is easy to be happy when this side is winning.

Thing is, there is a tug-of-war going on, and this euphoria – while it may last for days, weeks, years even – will eventually fade away. Don’t worry, it’ll come back, but in the meantime you are left some pretty insidious thoughts: how trivial your accomplishments are; how lonely you are, surrounded by hollow friends with whom you only discuss the trending shows on Netflix and nothing else; and how stupid you are, to not have realized how stupid you were all this time…

Can you feel happy when this side is winning?

Yes. Yes you can. Just follow these simple steps:

First, recognize that no one is going to win this tug-of-war, and that it is totally normal to find yourself on the currently losing side.

Second, be cool with it. Laugh. Recognize that your misfortunes are absurd, that the little worker ant minding his own business can sometimes be stepped on by an elephant, and that there really is nothing you can do about it.

Misfortune becomes funny when you are cool with it, because it is utterly absurd how detrimental one bad decision could be.

Misery comes to those who would throw a tantrum at being on the losing side, even if it’s just for a day or two. “Why isn’t my life as perfect as that guy’s?! Why don’t people like me even when I try so hard?! Why can’t I just get lucky and win at life?!” – When you throw these kind of tantrums, you become miserable – because this tug-of-war isn’t something you can influence with determination or perseverance. It just happens.

To be happy is to shrug. It is to shrug at who you are, at the shit that befalls you, at the elephant’s foot that comes down once in a while, and to laugh at them.

It is also fine not to be the center of the universe, once in a while.

How To Make Someone Like You

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Are you Tom Hanks stranded on a deserted island?

Are you the Ron Weasley of the dating world?

Do you have a strange addiction to cheesy romantic comedies because you have never experienced proper relationships?

Fear not my friends – follow this simple 3-step guide and you too can become an anime protagonist who is always mysteriously surrounded by women/men/mermaids/humanoid demons who are attracted to you for no reason!

 

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Step 1 – Brush your teeth

Good oral hygiene is paramount when seeking intimate relationships with another filth-lathered drool-soaked human being.

Remember, when smiling and holding uncomfortably long eye contact with someone, if they turn away in disgust, it’s not your black balaklava or your shredded hoodie, or your brown skin or your neckbeard – it’s your bad breath.

This is the fundamental step, even more important than…

 

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Step 2 – Be Sexy

Very self-explanatory.

Just be sexy. Just do it.

If you can’t you’re a failure in life and should kill yourself.

 

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Step 3 – Make them your slave

If they are not liking you, they are not doing what they are told, and slaves always do what they are told, otherwise you would’ve spent your hard-earned money on a moose or a fleshlight instead.

Insult them. Make them feel bad by becoming a fat alchoholic. Stalk them on social media and post snide sarcastic remarks about their achievements.

“Stupid slave, why can’t you just like me goddamn it” may not come across as very convincing, but add a “I hope you are happy that you’ve ruined my life” and it’s all dandy.

Emojis are very versatile in this respect. Spam that tear-laugh like you mean it.

 

And that’s it! Now go out there and make your conquests!!

 

 

How to be Dominant in Bed

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‘Digging in like a Diglet won’t protect you against my buffed Arboc!!’

 

Tired of always being the bottom?

Scared of growing older than Melisandre without having experienced hardcore BDSM?

Fear not my friends – follow these simple steps to master one’s thirsting flesh, and become the lord of your cushiony domain!

 

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Protection is key to victory.

 

Step 1 – Wear traditional Samurai armour from the Tokugawa Shogunate.

Open exhibition of your physical dominance is key, and nothing screams power and authority louder than a full-body samurai armour crafted from triple-folded steel and inlaid with the fur of the snow fox.

After armouring up and getting into bed, make sure to keep your back straight and sit cross-legged upon the mattress. For even better results, shout at the top of your lungs any of following phrases before performing any bedroom activity:

“Ore sanjou!” – Here I am! Behold me!

“kakatte koi!!” – Come get some!!

“Shinzou wo sasageyo!” – Devote your heart!!!

Instant results guaranteed.

 

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‘I’ve got a bad feeling ab – oops wrong movie.’

Step 2 – Play the Indiana Jones theme song from a surround sound system.

Nothing elevates one’s spirits and libido like the rousing orchestral flourishes of John Williams’ best composition. Beware, however, that one cannot replace this with any of JW’s other works, especially not the Star Wars theme. Playing the Star Wars theme in the bedroom will instantly restore your virginity while simultaneously grant you a magnificent bundle of neckbeard – not recommended.

 

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Smiling always helps.

Step 3 – Pull out your wand and pretend you are a sixth-year from Hogwarts.

First, you must put on the biggest hat you own and loudly declare to all parties present the house to which you belong: Ravenclaw is guaranteed to impress, if not slightly generic and ego-rubbing; Hufflepuff is the most effective form of contraception; Gryffindor is best reserved for solo endeavours, as their members are most likely to be beaten on a broom; and Slytherin is the perfect choice for edgelords and atheists, for they all think themselves cool and progressive while everyone else knows that they are just little pricks.

Second, work on your wand. Since non-verbal spells are not recommended in the bedroom, you must clearly enunciate your choice of charm or enchantment. The following are proven to succeed:

‘Expelliarmus!’ – It instantly disrobes all parties. 0% of the time it works every time.

‘Petrificus Totalus!’ – A versatile enchantment for men.

‘Protego!’ – Effective contraception, as no one will want to sleep with you after you shout this in the bedroom.

 

And there you have it – now go out there and conquer like 13th century Mongolians!

How to Fall in Love

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First, the world loses its colour.

You wonder if life has always been this grey, drenched in a vapor of misery that numbs the skull.

Listless, you carry on as usual, feigning ignorance about the giddy gnawing at the tip of your tongue.

Speaking, you let spill meaninglessness, for what had once held you thrall now seemed like trifles.

‘So…did you read about the…’

The news? Really? Is that what you had wanted to talk about when you opened your mouth?

There is a warmth at the back of your throat. Like the burn of alcohol, only stronger.

Say it.

Say it.

You utter a name.

Magic, this name. It evokes an enchantment that pokes a hole into your chest. A tide of crimson spills forth upon all that you touch and suddenly there is colour, a garish red lining weaved around your fingertips, effervescing into the abyssal grey like so many rays of sun.

With it, a searing emptiness.

Your chest, it burns. You hold your hands against it to staunch the flow, thinking that with pressure this flood will cease, like all the trivial others before it. As your fingers clench tight, there comes a false weight upon your mind, made real by your determination that all wounds can be staunched, if one simply persisted.

Then you notice the colours.

How bright it is, this vivid canvas. It drapes over the grey, shuffling out of sight all that is ugly and cruel. At first you are doubtful, for such an obvious lie could only beguile the foolish, for underneath it the vapidity remains, unchanged by the kaleidoscopic light smeared over its despondent face.

But that’s the thing.

You are foolish.

What an insidious accusation. You rail against it, for you are no fool, and no evocation of a singular name should ever elicit such a flood of torturous rainbows. Colours be damned; let it all be grey, as it ever will be. It is the only world in which you have lived, and no miserly lie can lift you elsewhere.

Fool.

Fool.

This world of colour is what you have always wanted. All along you knew it to be illusory and fickle, and yet you pursued.

Why?

Because it makes the world beautiful.

Speaking again, you relent and let down your clutching hand.

‘Yeah…think I’m in love.’

See? Not so bad is it, being a fool.

For that is what you are.

Yearning to be free of the greyness,

You have fallen in love.