The Cube

October 27, 2022 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, AUSTRALIANIA, TRAVEL |

d’Arenberg winery, October 2022 d’Arenberg Cube is a five-storey, double-tempered glass building situated within the Mourvèdre vines of d’Arenberg winery in the little town of McLaren Vale, itself a great stop and gateway to South Australia’s famous Fleurieu Peninsula. The design concept for the Cube came from d’Arenberg’s Chief Winemaker, Chester Osborn, by way of inspiration from Toyo Ito’s Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London and Ernõ Rubik’s famous puzzle. Built in 2014/17 at a reputed cost of $15 million to $16 million Australian dollars, it rises, or ‘floats’ above gently rolling hills and vines, in no way creating an eyesore. You…

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Victims ‘R’ Us

October 23, 2022 | Posted by Guest Reviewer | AUSTRALIANIA, CRIME, LIFE |

2022: the new Government in South Australia has produced an important ‘law reform.’ The Government website states: If someone pleads guilty or is found guilty of the crime, you can tell the court about how the crime has affected you. You can do this by making a Victim Impact Statement (VIS). Your VIS can help the judge or magistrate understand how the crime has affected you and is one of the things they think about when deciding what penalty to give the offender. A VIS gives you a chance to talk about how you feel, and what has happened to…

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The Descent of Comedy

October 8, 2022 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, Comedy, POLITICS, TV SERIES |

Oh dear. Shaun Micallef was once a genius of the Theatre of Embarrassment. But if you’re going to “go political” in comedy, you need to visit a plague on all houses. Not merely pander to the cognitive elites, smug in their infallible bubbles. Alas, he’s now the Australian Stephen Colbert.

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Moonage Daydream

September 30, 2022 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Documentary, FILM, Modern Music, MUSIC, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Written and directed by Brett Morgen) (2022) The great David Bowie died in 2016. He’d have liked this ‘documentary,’ we suspect, because like him, it is sui generis, an assault on the eyes, ears, and (pace his philosophical meanderings) the mind, that satisfies for almost all of its 2 hours and 15 minutes. With a mountain of footage and full estate authorisation, Morgen has lovingly assembled a vibrant, moving monument to the peripatetic searcher and androgynous transformer who was Starman, Ziggy Stardust, Cracked Actor, DJ, the Man Who Sold the World, the Space Oddity, a Young American, a Hero, and…

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The Great Degeneration

(How Institutions Decay and Economies Die) (Niall Ferguson, 2014) This compendium of Reith Lectures by historian Niall Ferguson given in 2012 is no less topical a decade later. In fact it is a fortiori, given that the subsequent years have borne out many of the predictions made. For example, the author quotes ‘cliometrician’ Peter Turchin predicting “the next instability peak [of violence] should occur in the United States around 2020.” Orwell’s pigs have taken over Manor Farm: “What Charles Murray has called the ‘cognitive elite’, educated at exclusive private universities, intermarried and congregated in a few ‘super zip codes’, looks…

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