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The Weekly Round-Up: Benevolent parental neglect, David Koch and Controversial Advertising

Each week we share five exciting and provocative ideas, links and articles making waves on the internet.

CLEMENTINE FORD RESPONDS TO THE DAVID-KOCH-DOESN’T-APPROVE-OF-BREASTFEEDING DEBACLE

David “Kochie” Koch was subject to an angry backlash this week after he made some ill-advised comments about public breastfeeding, and his opinion that it should be discrete and ‘classy’. While acknowledging that “it is intellectually exhausting that this boring conversation is occurring at all,” Clementine Ford makes the argument that the real issue  is the antiquated cultural mores of Australia’s broadcast media.

LANCE ARMSTRONG’S STORIES ARE OFFICIALLY FICTION

In the wake of disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong’s confession that he was not only a liar but also a bully and a narcissist, a sign posted by Manly Library went viral. The sign read “All non-fiction Lance Armstrong books, including ‘Lance Armstrong: Images of a Champion,’ ‘The Lance Armstrong Performance Program’ and ‘Lance Armstrong: World’s Greatest Champion,’ will soon be moved to the Fiction section.” Proving that there is no greater fury to fear than that of a scorned librarian.

THE ‘RACISM’ CONTROVERSY OVER DICK SMITH’S AUSTRALIA DAY COMMERCIAL

In the wake of Dick Smith’s controversial Australia Day commercial, where we learn that the real reason asylum seekers are washing up on our shores is to get their hands on some Dick Smith-brand Ozemite, Ben Pobjie questions whether the ad is actually racist, pointing out that “one man’s racism is another man’s innocent pride in the superiority of people who share his skin colour. There’s such a fine line between “patriotism” and “being a dick” that in many ways, it’s not a line at all and they are literally the same thing.”

THE RHONDA AND KETUT ROMANCE MAY BE MORE SORDID THAN IT FIRST APPEARS

For everybody who’s given a passing giggle to the on-going whimsical romance of Rhonda and Ketut from the AAMI advertising campaign, Nigel Bowen’s article for The Drum might make you sober up. He points out that the ad taps into the sordid tradition of Westerners journeying to an exotic locale and exchanging money for sex and romance with a local, a fantasy which is no longer confined to men. “How much longer,” he asks, “are we going to continue excoriating all those Rons for the kind of behaviour we condone and even celebrate when Rhondas engage in it?”

CATHERINE DEVENY ADVOCATES DETACHMENT PARENTING

In this video filmed as part of the Wheeler Centre’s Soapbox/Lunchbox series, Catherine Deveny rails against helicopter parenting – parents who hover. “Let’s get this into perspective. In 1975 I swallowed a coin. Mum took it out of my pocket money. In 2012 my nephew Harry swallows a coin. My sister-in-law calls an ambulance.”Arguing that the energy and time parents typically dedicate to their children these days is narcissistic, suffocating and oppressive to both child and parent, Deveny advocates what she calls Detachment Parenting: “benevolent neglect, quality boredom and independence as a result of parental indifference.”