stupid lefty whore

TitleThis is a guest post by my sister Cat. Yes, there are now three bloggers in the Rollison family.

As this is my first ever post, I’ll briefly introduce myself.

My name is Cat Williams, but on twitter I am known as Catherine Rollison which is my maiden name.

I am 31 years old and I live in Adelaide with my husband Dave and our beloved dog Tully. I am a project manager in construction (currently working for Syntheo, who is building the National Broadband Network).

My main interests outside of the long and tireless hours I work, and aside from the obvious, being my family and friends, are AFL and politics.

Some of you may follow my sister, Victoria, and/or my mother, Kay, both of whom are prolific bloggers.

Victoria is my twin sister so apart from the same DNA, we share very similar opinions on many things: socialism, progressive politics, the environment, although mine are not as well vocalised as Vic, nor our mother, both of whom have an excellent way with words and a far greater urge to read and write than I do. Unsurprising that Victoria’s education led her towards humanities, like both our parents, but mine ended up in the relatively dry surroundings of the Adelaide University Civil & Structural engineering department.

I sometimes think of Vic’s passion for writing, whether it be the two novels she has penned, or her regular blog, as the outcome of someone who’s thoughts and opinions fill her like a cup of water which regularly overflows onto the keyboard. In that respect, it sometimes seems like no matter how many other things she crams into her life, she can’t NOT write. The words would have nowhere else to go.

I have been known to accuse Vic and our mum of being stuck in an echo chamber, only willing to write for, watch, read and converse on twitter with the other rusted-on left winger tweeps or commentators, many of whom they would now call friends.

When something controversial happens in politics I will show up unannounced at my parents’ house and request that we watch 7:30 together, no matter who is appearing, and no matter what they have to say (my parents infuriate me by putting the television on mute when they don’t like what someone is saying – they do this too with football commentators). I know if I didn’t force them, they would walk around the house in enraged silence, TV and radio OFF, and they would throw the Sydney Morning Herald out, unwrapped. Yes, they subscribe to the SMH, a day late, as the Advertiser is simply not an option. As much as it pains us all, I often DEMAND that my family members watch and listen to what is happening in forums and on mediums other than those they allow themselves to watch. I call it our reconnaissance mission.

As painful as it is to listen to people we disagree with, I think it is important to do so, for two reasons. First of all, if we don’t know what our opponents are saying, then how can we understand what attitudes our side of politics needs to counter? Sure, none of my family is actually IN politics, but we should never underestimate the impact and reach a simple conversation with a friend could have, or the questions we answer when we volunteer to hand out ‘how to vote’ cards at elections, let alone Vic’s blogs which some weeks reaches 10,000 Australian voters.

Second of all, I am fascinated by the swing voter, often reminding my family that, particularly in an election year, the ALP will do many things that make no sense to their most loyal supporters. In fact, a lot of things they say and do will elicit more criticism from the Rollisons than they do from the swing voters or the LNP’s rusted on voters.

But this is the point. WE, whether it be the rusted on ALP / Greens voters, OR the rusted on LNP / National voters, aren’t going to change our vote this year. It wouldn’t matter whether the ALP changed leaders in farcical circumstances three times between now and September, or whether Tony Abbott had a sudden change of heart and decided he supported meaningful action against climate change and is keeping the carbon price / ETS unchanged, there would hardly be an election in Australia’s history whereby the supporters of each party were LESS likely to change their votes between now and September.

So in the lead up to the big day in September, I’ve been willing to advance my reconnaissance missions, whether it be to seek conversations with an LNP voter or to look for the ‘uninformed or not decided’ members of the electorate , whether at work, socially or on Twitter or Facebook. Heck, I even read comments on news.com.au sites very occasionally, when I’m feeling bold. I think it’s important to try to understand what sort of issues, or the reporting of perceived issues, influence people’s votes. Or what has driven them already, to choose and actively support one candidate over the other.

This leads me to a conversation I had on Twitter recently, which, unexpectedly, went from being a conversation with (what I thought was) a Rudd supporting ALP voter, to a conversation with a rusted on LNP voter (reconnaissance)! But degenerated quickly into, what I am now led to believe, is a conversation that is very typical on Twitter for those of us who identify ourselves as left leaning Australians of the female variety.

It was two days after the embarrassing Rudd ‘no spill’ fiasco and a tweet appeared on my newsfeed from a ‘Greg Jessop’ (kudos to anyone on twitter who doesn’t hide behind a fake name – less likely to be a troll). His avatar was a photo of Kevin Rudd with the words ‘Its On’. Note this avatar has since changed to stick figures having intercourse. Charming stuff.

I tweeted him with a leading:

Tweet1

His reply:

Tweet2

At this point I realised he wasn’t a Rudd supporter at all, but an LNP voter disguised as a Rudd supporter in order to, as he put it, destabilise the ALP from within. A double agent one might say.

Now I’m not suggesting there is anything wrong with having an avatar, or even a name, that suggests you’re supporting something you’re not. I mean, sure, the actually satirical fake politician, or fake Andrew Bolt twitter accounts are much more entertaining than someone who uses their real name and poses as a fake Kevin Rudd Supporter, but again, as long as you’re not a pesky troll, I figure, I don’t mind talking to you.

I might even poke fun at you with a:

Tweet3

Now this comment was designed to hurt the guy’s ego. Sure it’s not ‘nice’, so to speak, but I figure, it’s a harmless way to tease someone on twitter who has dedicated over 5,000 tweets yet amassed less than 200 followers (I personally pride myself on my tweet to follower ratio being currently a fairly steady 1:1, but then I don’t tweet very often so I can’t really gloat).

He responded, unabashed, with a friendly-enough ‘stay mad, stay insignificant’, but then rapidly changed the topic drastically with the taunt ‘I do hope you’re looking forward to a decade of in Opposition and the return of WorkChoices’.

Tweet4

Part of me was surprised to see it was the first time I had been taunted on twitter by someone who could actually spell ‘you’re’.

The other part of me was a bit surprised that an LNP voter was taunting me with a jibe about WorkChoices.

I would have thought that most LNP supporters considered that a ‘no go zone’ after it had, in part, delivered Howard not only a heavy loss of an election, but also the loss of his own seat, being only the second ever Australian Prime Minister in history to achieve that feat.

I mean, sure, many LNP voters are very attracted to the WorkChoices policy and would support its return under the guise of a different name, but even Abbott is well advised enough not to CALL it Workchoices, as I pointed out to Greg Jessop:

Tweet5

Moving on.

Greg argued his wish for the return of a form of Industrial Relations Reform:

Tweet6

My retort, like the ‘tweet to follower’ ratio was on the slightly personal side having discovered from Greg’s bio that he was a Geotechnical Engineer, I used the normal ‘in’ engineering term:

Tweet7

Greg stayed in the LNP ‘groove’ with a dig at the unions:

Tweet8

This is where my reconnaissance missions, I feel, start to pay off when I can actually counter LNP ‘lines’ with a little thing I like to call ‘facts’:

Tweet9

I might add, at this point, that I’m actually enjoying this conversation now, more than I was at the beginning, when I thought Greg was a Rudd supporter. All pretty harmless fun.

Greg, in further LNP-voter predictable fashion used a ‘me’ example to refute a national statistic.

Tweet10

By this stage, I’m wondering how much further this guy could follow the ‘I’m an LNP voter on twitter’ playbook. I goaded him with a double edged attack both on his ‘me’ mentality and an open ended query on his stance on climate change:

Tweet11

His retort was probably equally as predictable:

Tweet12

Tweet13

And that’s where the ‘pleasant’ retorts spectacularly ended.

Greg Jessop, clearly ENGRAGED by conversing with someone who not only supported unions, but agreed with 98% of qualified scientists that AGW exists, exploded with a:

Tweet14

Wow. That one, I didn’t see coming.

But was I that surprised?

Well. A bit. Greg didn’t originally present himself as the kind of person to resort to misogyny at sign of losing an argument, or at least, not as rapidly as he did.

And as I said to Greg:

Tweet15

I don’t think we as a society will ever understand why so many men, particularly belonging to the right side of politics, hate women so much. The Workchoices, the unions, the false economy statistics, the Climate Change denial, these are all standard LNP lines. But in chicken and egg, I don’t think the hatred of women is something these men have developed purely because Tony Abbott does. I think they always have and it’s not a problem we will solve in a hurry.

I would like to be able to converse with these people I disagree with, without being called a whore. But in my experience, there are very few right wingers, even amongst those using their real name and profession in their twitter profile, who are willing  to engage about political policy, the state of the economy or anything they disagree with me about, without quickly going to the gutter with nasty personal, unwarranted attacks. It’s a real shame.

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19 Comments on “stupid lefty whore”

  1. Welcome to the Rollinson Media Empire. Here I know I can look forward to more of the commonsense we no longer find in the Mogul’s Media.

    This descent into the verbal gutter is one of the sad things about Twitter. The old “News Groups” of the mid-1990’2 also went the same way. Instant communications seems to bring the haters out in full force. Men also suffer from abuse. Currently one of the most common from the right is to call any male on the left a “Paedo”.

    Around a decade ago I was having a discussion about religion with a self-avowed Christian and, as I was not falling into line with his rather proto-teapartyish ideas he closed the thread with “Archie you are just a dumb atheist leftist sodomite pervert f*ckwit troll.” I think he expected me to be hurt, not wear it with pride *grin*.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Great article Catherine. The Rollison genes are strong. 🙂

    You are so spot on about how quickly the rusted-on LNP male voter will degenerate to misogynistic ridiculous spluttering retorts. One only took one tweet from me to dismissively tell me to go have a cup of tea & talk to my plants. Sheesh!! They usually never respond to a pertinent question or counter any decent argument as they tend not to have any answers. That is when they make the patronising sexist tweets & poof off.

    Like Tony Abbott, they lack any real courage & usually cannot give a rational explanation for the beliefs they try to cram down our throats. Most of these are learnt parrot-fashion from shock jocks & the MSM LNP propaganda without little true understanding of what it all means.

    Keep up the good work, Cat. 🙂

    • Joy Cooper says:

      Forgot to fill out my name with the above comment. Sorry about that. Can you change it? Should say Joy Cooper. :blush:

  3. wrb330 says:

    Enjoyed the ride and I too am little surprised at the abrupt ending, however I must say when battling a rusted on LNP supporter the best way to end it is to ask for facts & links to LNP policy.
    The get enraged as even they dont know what Abbott is planning or intending which makes thier blind suport al the more baffling.

    Great article, thanks for writing it.

  4. Robert says:

    Welcome Catherine. A good article. I don’t know either why ‘humourless men’ of the LNP variety (although non-LNP men in this category abound as well) have to resort to put downs of women who out perform their intelect. Tony Abbott, although a strong practictioner of anti-intelectual/women misogyny, is not to blame for this prevelance in Australian society, though he should be held to account for encouraging it by example! All these Rudd supporters who love him but won’t vote for Julia Gillard are really masquarading LNP voters who would never vote for the ALP ever! Encourage your parents to listen to non-Labor views, if only to reach an understanding of the why & where-fores of their arguments. They need not agree with these views, but understanding of where they are coming from can only enrich the debate. Keep writing and I’ll keep reading!

  5. Marion Groves says:

    Obviously the person who calls himself Greg Jessop is a nasty troll. See http://theantibogan.wordpress.com/tag/greg-jessop/

  6. Graeme SMART says:

    I too think it is useful to hear the other point of view. I listened to Couterpoint on ABC RN for many years and learned a lot about how the other mob ticked. I sometimes even agreed with guest! Unfortunately “our abc” has now handed Counterpoint to Amanda Vanstone to use as a LNP tool so everyone loses again 😦

  7. Perhaps some could ask Amanda Vanstone when she is Counterpoint how sorry she is for her and her government part in the disgraceful supply of unsafe Custom boats to Torres Strait Island people that resulted in the death of 5 people. I was there when she flew into Torres Strait with a contingent of press lap dogs so that she could get on the news handing over these boats for border protection.

    For further details Google “Malu Sara” . Its the boat that sank about 3 weeks after she handed them over.

  8. JamesH says:

    Hi Catherine (The Cat) Jokingly mate. Love your maiden blog post on those people who become rusted on. The only suggestion I could put forward into debate is some kind of Penitrine to soften their entwined ideological one liners with no substance which is now crusted into their brains. Thus they cannot see the world as it is from Tony’s one liners. The Economy is going down-down from a no good government. Sounds like one of those obnoxious Colas advertisement situations; Stop the Boats.

    Stop the Boats by Scott Morrison. Just how are you going to stop the refugee boats Scott Morrison? We will do it when it is safe to do so. When will that be? It will be a procedure operational matter and I cannot tell you for the enemy will know what we are going to do.

    No, no, I don’t want to know about how to tow boats through the sea as I have had the pleasure of being towed and towing a couple of boats over my lifetime on the sea.

    I want to know if it is legal by International Law of the Sea, outside the jurisdiction of Australia’s economic zone to do so?

    No answer as yet on this legal subject.

    I know that our navy or customs ships can take into custody any vessel within our territorial water zone and tow them around in circles if they like. It is when they leave our legal waters and into another country like Indonesia and where permission must be gained before we hand over the refugee vessel. As it is Indonesia has refused those requests since 2003 to take back any of those privately owned Indonesian small craft since.

    The facts are. Since Italy had tried to tow back some refugee boats to Libya. The European Court of Human Rights had affirmed in 2012 in the Hirsi case, when the Italian policy of intercepting migrant boats in the Mediterranean sea and returning them back to Libya was found to be illegal by law of the sea and the movement of refugees.

    Then there is our legal High Court decisions on the Malaysian Solution over ruled the Labor government when it was challenged. They only reason that the High Court ruled in favour of the Howard Government was the fact that the Tampa belonged to another nation who had rescued the survivors from the sea.

    Yes Tony it wont be so easy to tow the boats back especially if they are laden to the gunnels with human cargo. So very easy to capsize when under tow or pull those flimsy boats in halve.

    Anyway Cat keep up the good work and we can see how writing is in your DNA.

    Cheers mate and not so rusted in my old age.

    • Marilyn says:

      It’s also not legal to ship refugees off to Nauru and Manus Island, jail children, have cops stopping them from leaving persecution and employing the IOM to force them to go home from places like Indonesia but we do all of that.

      The high court did not rule in favour of Howard over the TAMPA, they simply refused to hear the case because the people were already in Nauru.

      I am curious though why young women thing that being called a leftie whore is misogynist? I call men like this twat right wing scrotums, it’s just an expression.

      • JamesH says:

        Good to receive your reply Marilyn.

        Initially the Habeas Corpus for the asylum seekers proceedings started in the Federal Court on the 1st of September 2001 and Judge North said there was grounds for the Habeas Corpus writ against the Government for detaining the rescuees (North used this terminology).

        The Federal Government appealed to the Full bench of the Federal Court and on the 18th September 2001 the Chief Justice French with Judge Beaumont found that there was indeed a prerogative power for the Australian Government to prevent the entry of non-citizens entry into Australia and ha the right to detain them. While Judge Black dissented to a degree with these findings.

        The Howard Government managed to pass the Bill through parliament for the Border Protection Act on the 26th September 2001 with Labor voting against it.

  9. Catherine,

    Fascinating post. I really enjoyed the discursive analysis of the tweets – as a relative ‘newbie’ to Twitter, I’m still getting my head around the conventions of virtual conversation.

    One thing – interesting that it was the climate change comment that finally sent this chap over the edge with the abuse. Something about climate change seems to really bring out the aggro – something I’ve posted about here: http://climatepeopleorg.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/climate-change-an-emotional-business/

    My working hypothesis is that we all get climate change is a very real existential threat and that we are complicit in its production (consumption, lifestyles etc). However, for those on the Right accepting this undermines their very sense of being and so must be resisted both internally and externally. How else to explain the vitriol?

    Chris

  10. Johanna says:

    Lovely to have a guest post… And thanks for taking the time to share your story. I agree that Twitter can get nasty. I think it is a combination of trying to cram a though into 140 characters, with the (relative) anonymity and the immediacy of social media. I am sorry that the person who tweeted you was rude…and you are right – it was unnecessary. BUT calling someone a whore, does not make them a mysoginist! I think we are doing the Sisterhood a severe disservice by pulling out that charge whenever we hear something we don’t like. I have to be honest – really honest – I thought your tweets were borderline rude leading up to his unnecessary one. Does that mean he had the right to snap? No… But it likewise doesn’t make him a mysoginist.
    On a brighter note – I hope this doesn’t put you off Twitter (or blogging). Engineer or not, you have an easy way with words that I really enjoy!

  11. anonymous says:

    Thanks for writing this blog. I’ve encountered this idiot recently. No point engaging him. Obviously would go around in circles and revert back to hardened ignorant right wing extremist attitudes. I’d call myself middle of the road, perhaps slightly left but this guy is a nutter.

  12. anonymous says:

    Bet he masterbates to Fox News. Such a coward he can’t even show a picture of himself on his Twitter profile.

  13. Everyone loves what you guys are up too. This type of clever work and coverage!
    Keep up the good works guys I’ve added you guys to blogroll.

  14. E G Jensz says:

    Having been actively involved and now only interested in Left Politics since 1969 I find it refreshing to find another family such as ours who have strong political views and are not frightened to voice them even against a background of mainstream media which has a distorted right wing bias. Both my sons are left leaning and both are frequently in political stoushes with their Liberal Party member cousin from Perth. The debates they have online are always good natured and well-mannered, including my Liberal nephew, but often I dispair at the nonsense he gleans from his Liberal Party compatriots.

    I understand that business, mining and agriculture have their own barrows to push and there are always differing views but it is instructive regarding Right Wing supporters that they begin to sling personal abuse when they are losing an argument. This is what happened to Julia Gillard, it was all personal because there was no fault to find with her policies and the implementation of them under the trying conditions of compromise with the independents.

    The other way Right Wingers argue is to use anecdotes which are unsupported by real evidence such as Jessop’s 320 applicants nonsense. He thinks he can say what he wants without providing proof.

    My wife always trots out a saying one of her teachers taught her at high school when she reads things which are a rationalisation of a situation as a basis for an argument – “when you rationalise you are using rational lies” – it is a common basis for Right Wing debate.

    Loved the article – well done.

    • E G Jensz says:

      Further I should admit that in my household I am the one who mutes the likes of Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey and all their ilk because this is my form of censorship. They never have anything to say that I want to hear. I turn the lot off if their comments are too long winded and I have to look at them!

      • Joy Cooper says:

        Love it, E.G. 🙂

        Personally, the entire Coalition make me feel physically ill, especially Joe, as he just comes across as super sleazy & nasty when he spouts the party line nonsense which he cannot truly believe is accurate. As for Tony, well………..


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