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3 hours ago, GoatmasterGeneral said:

You can't think of it that way though. Music is life mate

When he is wrong he is so wrong (eg about Vegemite and Krallice), but when he is right the GG nails it. And this is right.

 

1 hour ago, Dead1 said:

I have nothing against medical cannabis ie properly prescribed by a trained medical professional and properly dosed stuff.

And nor do I. There is a big element of fashion and groupthink in medicine as with every other aspect of human culture, and the evidence for what cannabis can and can't do and how it should be used is pretty thin. But people want to try it and  so be it. Research and experience will teach us what to do with it.

Recreational. Yeah, whatever. I don't drink to get drunk and I don't care to get high. I have, of course, done both. I have never smoked otherwise, so smoking a joint I always found unpleasant and - when shared - unhygienic.

And you really shouldn't smoke at all, kiddies. There are other ways.

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27 minutes ago, Thatguy said:

When he is wrong he is so wrong (eg about Vegemite and Krallice), but when he is right the GG nails it. And this is right.

 

And nor do I. There is a big element of fashion and groupthink in medicine as with every other aspect of human culture, and the evidence for what cannabis can and can't do and how it should be used is pretty thin. But people want to try it and  so be it. Research and experience will teach us what to do with it.

Recreational. Yeah, whatever. I don't drink to get drunk and I don't care to get high. I have, of course, done both. I have never smoked otherwise, so smoking a joint I always found unpleasant and - when shared - unhygienic.

And you really shouldn't smoke at all, kiddies. There are other ways.

We are still learning about its medicinal uses, but at this point we have a lot of research which suggests marijuana, particularly when ingested, is less damaging to your body than alcohol. I’m absolutely against decriminalising harder drugs but it has never made sense to me for weed to be included in that category. Besides if you’re decriminalise it you can text it the same way we do with cigarettes and alcohol, free up the courts because they aren’t having to deal with misdemeanour offences for possession. So actually there are many benefits to making it legal.  Tax I mean, damn siri.

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We can’t rely on any single tax on any goods, services, or income to cover the cost of much-needed government services. Decriminalising Mary-Jane is just one Avenue the government should pursue. Overhauling our income and corporate tax systems is another,the wealthy and large companies should have to pay their fair share. I better stop myself before I start talking about universal basic income, the transition to sustainable energy, etc.

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37 minutes ago, RelentlessOblivion said:

We are still learning about its medicinal uses, but at this point we have a lot of research which suggests marijuana, particularly when ingested, is less damaging to your body than alcohol.

I agree. It should certainly be decriminalised. Tax it but don't smoke it.

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Delta 8 THC Rainbow Ring Gummies 30mg - OC Wellness Solutions

 

It's legal here in most of the USA for recreational use now, so I'm sure the states are taxing the hell out of it like they tax the hell out of gas and booze and cigarettes and everything else discretionary. Legalization came way too late for me as I haven't smoked weed (or tobacco) in probably 15 years. I will eat the occasinal THC gummy that I bought at the local weed store, but it's not a regualr thing for me. I might eat a half of one about once a month if that, probably less than that because I forget I even have them. I do enjoy it NGL, but I could live without it. I enjoy a beer and/or a drink of whiskey nearly every day but I don't drink to get drunk because unlike getting stoned I don't enjoy being drunk at all and I never have. Haven't been intoxicated in decades. I've never done any other 'harder' drugs or used any hallucinogenics because I've just never been interested. 

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"can't be bothered" sums up my attitude these days. Weed is easy to get, always has been really. Cops don't really give a crap unless it's a commercial quantity or it's added to a longer list of criminal activities, gone are the days they search long haired guys in black band t-shirts looking for a little baggy of weed. But I just can't be bothered going and getting it. I'd like to say I gave up smoking for my health but I also know that I gave it it mostly because I couldn't be bothered going to the shop to get them. If I'd lived 5 minutes walk from the shop I'd probably still be smoking today.

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6 hours ago, RelentlessOblivion said:

We are still learning about its medicinal uses, but at this point we have a lot of research which suggests marijuana, particularly when ingested, is less damaging to your body than alcohol. I’m absolutely against decriminalising harder drugs but it has never made sense to me for weed to be included in that category. Besides if you’re decriminalise it you can text it the same way we do with cigarettes and alcohol, free up the courts because they aren’t having to deal with misdemeanour offences for possession. So actually there are many benefits to making it legal.  Tax I mean, damn siri.

 

I think tax is a poor reason because like cigarettes and alcohol there are massive social and economic costs that outweigh the taxes raised - especially given taxes raised on cigarettes, alcohol and fuel aren't connected to spending on health, social services or roads.

Someone proposed banning sale of cigarettes to all people born after 2000.  A great idea!  It was knocked back because of impact on tax revenue which isn't linked to spending on health etc.

If  tobacco related health treatment and social services (eg needing home care services earlier due to incapacitation from cigarette related illness,) was directly funded by cigarette taxes, they'd have a massive deficit and society/government would be pushing to make it all illegal.

Same with alcohol or any other drug.  indeed in some jurisdictions where marijuana was legalised they ended up with a marked increase in drug related car accidents including both fatalities and injuries due to people driving stoned.  

Same applies to alcohol or other drugs.  Depending on jurisdiction anywhere up to 50% of road fatalities are due to substances.  

 

For example in South Australia  in period 2015-19 23% of drivers involved in fatal accidents tested positive to THC (marijuana), Meth or MDMA.   That's a huge number. 

(You'd find worse stats on alcohol simply because it's more accessible).

 

None of that gets accounted for under costs - I work in health finance and we are beyond incompetent at capturing costs especially all those hidden ones that don't seem related but are a direct result.    

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free up the courts because they aren’t having to deal with misdemeanour offences for possession.

 In Tasmania most marijuana possession is never prosecuted.  I lived in a shit place called Ravenswood and knew a lot of dealers (most of my mates were stoners who then got into ice, speed, ecstasy and some of my friends were dealers).  They got no grief from the cops.  Some of the bigger guys got raided if they got on the police radar.     

If cops caught you with a small amount, they'd just take it and that's it.  If they busted you drinking in public or underage (happened to me a couple of times) they'd just get you to pour the booze on to the street or told to go home. 

I know 3 guys who were caught drink driving and let go without a warning let alone being charged- I was one of them, my brother is the second and my best friend the third.  My best friend had been drinking for over 12 hours straight and the cops still let him walk after they took him to the station and had him sit in the reception to sober up a bit!

----

The courts are congested but that's because of the convoluted nature of appeals etc and often for far worse things ala domestic violence, assault, etc.

Revolving prison system doesn't help either.  Often the offenders have their time in court, are convicted and then walk out free as time served in lead up to court appearance counts as time served.  They then go and do more stuff - assault people, steal things, beat up/rape their partners, murder their animals (happens a lot in domestic violence), etc etc   Reoffending rates are huge.

Usually your average dirt bag has multiple cases against them - an assault here, domestic violence there, breach of bail there, break and enter there, drink driving there and drug dealing here.  Often there's multiple domestic violence cases with different partners.

Modern progressive ideas cause problems too - eg multiple appeals, presentencing reports, psychological assessments, or processes to determine if scumbags are suitable to sit trial.  More liberal minded magistrates tend to give people dozens of chances which means they're out reoffending which in turn requires more court appearances!

And because it's all based on due process, a lot of the court time is taken with procedural breaches - eg scumbag required to stay at home but was then picked up somewhere else.  That requires a breach of conditions appearance etc etc.

 

My wife works in court support for domestic violence and she has a lot of stories about how the legal system doesn't work and how it's just a bureaucratic mess.

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5 hours ago, KillaKukumba said:

Well if people keep giving up smoking in large numbers the government are going to have to get their money for Medicare somewhere so they may as well make it from weed. We can't rely on Unkie Kev's alcopop tax and speeding fines to pay for Medicare alone.

 

You humans have no idea how convoluted and disconnected from reality the government budget setting process is.

 

Alcohol & cigarette excise taxes are not linked to funding Medicare let alone funding for hospitals and health services which are funded by states who don't raise excise taxes. 

States receive grants from Commonwealth but these aren't linked to excise taxes but rather to various intragovernmental agreements and obscure mathematical formulas based on some policy wonk's latest brain fart and shitty compromises.

 

Do you know nearly every time the Commonwealth fund some awesome new health initiative or tax cutback for people or funky new social subsidy, they fund it by reducing grants to state governments, the same grants which fund hospitals, schools etc?

So you get your little Commonwealth Government cash bonus or some service subsidised but at the same time you've lost a lot of funding for hospitals and schools.

 

Commonwealth government's main role is getting politicians re-elected.  State government is responsible for delivering actual services.

 

 

 

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Refers to others as "you humans".

Refuses to see a positive side to anything in life.

Regularly suggests the world as we know it should end.

Regularly makes comments about how much better AI drones could run the world.

Maybe those AI drones aren't as far away as some predict.

 

*note: I know I said I'd stop trying to inject sarcasm into conversations, but fuck it!

 

 

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10 hours ago, Dead1 said:

I am an obsessive anti-hoarder.  If I don't use it, I sell it or give it away or chuck it.  I still own several hundred CDs and vinyl but that's what I actually listen to!  I've probably got rid of more CDs than I currently own over the course of the last couple of decades.

This is how everyone should be.

Excessive clutter is a source of stress most people can't recognise. It's funny, I say this sitting in my 2.1 x 2.5 m man cave that doubles as studio and home office, which is pretty cluttered (mainly because I just can't avoid cables and effects pedals all over the floor because they are in constant use) - but I am very mindful of not ever leaving my shit laying around the rest of the house. LPs live in the lounge but are always put away, except for what is playing on display. 

I have been on a eBay selling bender of late to clear stuff out. Sold almost all my lead miniatures (what nerds paint) and made some good coin. Will start on the Star Wars figures soon. 

Which reminds me. Obi-Wan Kenobi - what a pile of shit that was.

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2 hours ago, KillaKukumba said:

Refers to others as "you humans".   Well that is a nicer way to address us than "you contemptible ignorant fucks."

Refuses to see a positive side to anything in life.  He lives in Tasmania married to a materialist with a dog who shits all over the house and he works in a pointless govt bureaucracy, give him a fucking break.

Regularly suggests the world as we know it should end.  The world as we know it will end. It will become the world as we haven't known it.

Regularly makes comments about how much better AI drones could run the world.  Well you have to admit the contemptible ignorant fucks haven't been doing the best job of things.

Maybe those AI drones aren't as far away as some predict.  My best guess is they'll be arriving sometime after the holiday weekend.

*note: I know I said I'd stop trying to inject sarcasm into conversations, but fuck it! You didn't really think you could stick to that for more than an hour didja?

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, JonoBlade said:

Which reminds me. Obi-Wan Kenobi - what a pile of shit that was.

I won't be watching it until I am about to stay with my mate whose Disney Plus I ride on and who watches all the Star Wars stuff and will expect me to be on top of it. And I have no interest really.

2 hours ago, GoatmasterGeneral said:

Refers to others as "you humans".   Well that is a nicer way to address us than "you contemptible ignorant fucks."

He could call you  kiddies or the unworthy like I do...

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I don't mean to imply contemptible ignorant fucks, merely that most people really don't understand how government or conplex bullshit money spinners like financial markets* work behind the scenes.  The word byzantine really does apply.

 

*These days even I don't get finance markets and I used to make a living selling and buying rights to sell/buy shares for rich people (who incidentally never ever brought or sold any of those shares).  Eg According to Bank of England banks apparently create money out of thin air because the money they are lending often doesn't exist!

 

How do you lend something that doesn't exist?  But this is a thing now.

 

----

Getting back to the drug thing I did an idea for a vending machine that dispenses one shot self heating crack pipes in colourful packaging called "Bongers".  They jlhave a built in lighter They would come in different flavours - "heroin", "marijuana","acid", "cocaine" and "peanut."  But all would be cheap crack.

 

More critically to appeal to modern people they would be really funky and completely environmentally ruinous nit also collectible because they would cone in different aesthetic styles and colour.

I think the world is ready for Bongers!

4 hours ago, JonoBlade said:

This is how everyone should be.

Excessive clutter is a source of stress most people can't recognise. It's funny, I say this sitting in my 2.1 x 2.5 m man cave that doubles as studio and home office, which is pretty cluttered (mainly because I just can't avoid cables and effects pedals all over the floor because they are in constant use) - but I am very mindful of not ever leaving my shit laying around the rest of the house. LPs live in the lounge but are always put away, except for what is playing on display. 

I have been on a eBay selling bender of late to clear stuff out. Sold almost all my lead miniatures (what nerds paint) and made some good coin. Will start on the Star Wars figures soon. 

Which reminds me. Obi-Wan Kenobi - what a pile of shit that was.

I collect miniatures for wargaming,albeit historical (mainly WW2).  New Star Wars ones for Legion look pretty cool though.

 

Insane what second hand lead and plastic minis (especially those produced by Games Woorkship) will go for these days!

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11 hours ago, GoatmasterGeneral said:

You didn't really think you could stick to that for more than an hour didja?

It's a hard life. I'm torn between being an out and out smart arse or being sarcastic.

The problem is that some of the ignorant fucks really do know how the world works but they can't be right because the young whipper snappers of the world think it's their way or no way.

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On 7/1/2022 at 12:40 AM, SurgicalBrute said:

I've generally found with cats, that if they're going the bathroom anywhere besides in their box it's either because they're unhappy about something (because they can be spiteful little shits when they want to be) or it's a medical issue and it's time to haul ass to the vet. Despite the stereotype, I wouldn't say cats are necessarily "clean" creatures, they're actually little dirtballs...but by instinct they do want to bury their shit just to hide it from bigger predators so when given the choice they tend to prefer their box.

With dogs, I think it comes down to four things...I'm a puppy and don't know any better. My tummy hurt because I just ate an entire box of cheese danish when you weren't looking (true story). I had to go really bad and no one was around to let me out. I'm 100 years old in people years and had an accident while I was sleeping

Good reasons. 

Fortunately all our cats were not spiteful little ones.  All ours kept themselves super clean which is expected I'm guessing. I've heard from friends there cat is a right one and even a little untrustworthy. They did not leave that little kitty with the newborn baby on its own. There cat did not like losing the owners attention at all and the behaviour did change for the worse when the little one arrived. There cat was the joyful little creature who'd wee all over there house. They got the cat happy eventually. It was very grumpy after a house move

I watched a you tube video where they claim cats don't like to be stroked on the tummies. Apparently it's seen as an aggressive move. Do you know about this? Is there truth to it?  You tube is not always reliable. Have not had time to check this one yet. 

My mum's dog ate a box of chocolates. She was just sick. An entire box of cheese Danish. Oh dear that's not good fortunately none of our pets did this.  Our dog once bit through the Christmas tree light power cable. After that yelp she never bit another chord again. She did live a long life after this. Honest😉

 

 

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On 7/1/2022 at 5:41 PM, GoatmasterGeneral said:

All this rub your dog's nose in his poop business has got me to thinking. Do you think if we made you consume one of your 10kg bags of sweets all in one sitting that there's a chance that would make you sick and help you get past your sweet cravings and finally kick the habit for good? Sounds crazy, but you never know.

Eating 10kg of sweets would put me off for a time but only for a time. I used to overdo drinking alcohol.id always say never again  but I'm still drinking but I pace myself more now because I need to stop the bad hangovers and blacking out. I once took my kid swimming after drinking alot night before and it was alot. I was safe to drive per limits and stuff but it was no fun. 

 

 

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17 hours ago, Dead1 said:

Insane what second hand lead and plastic minis (especially those produced by Games Woorkship) will go for these days!

I sold a couple of boxes of Regiments of Renown Citadel (Games Workshop) armies. These cost (I think) about £10 each in 1987 and sold for about £40 in 2022. I guess with inflation that is about even. And made in UK too. Can you imagine?

I also had/have a bunch of Grenadier miniatures which was a US company but pretty much all of the ones I had were made under license in New Zealand. Again, can you imagine? Products used to be made under license in different countries (even backwaters like NZ) so it kept local industry going, rather than getting everything made in China. These things weren't super cheap but they were still affordable and had more inherent value because of it.

Get. Off. My. Lawn.

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19 hours ago, blaaacdoommmmfan said:

Good reasons. 

Fortunately all our cats were not spiteful little ones.  All ours kept themselves super clean which is expected I'm guessing. I've heard from friends there cat is a right one and even a little untrustworthy. They did not leave that little kitty with the newborn baby on its own. There cat did not like losing the owners attention at all and the behaviour did change for the worse when the little one arrived. There cat was the joyful little creature who'd wee all over there house. They got the cat happy eventually. It was very grumpy after a house move

I watched a you tube video where they claim cats don't like to be stroked on the tummies. Apparently it's seen as an aggressive move. Do you know about this? Is there truth to it?  You tube is not always reliable. Have not had time to check this one yet. 

My mum's dog ate a box of chocolates. She was just sick. An entire box of cheese Danish. Oh dear that's not good fortunately none of our pets did this.  Our dog once bit through the Christmas tree light power cable. After that yelp she never bit another chord again. She did live a long life after this. Honest😉

 

 

Most of my cats have been pretty good overall. I've only ever had one who I'd say tended to get a little touchy about certain things. I was basically her person, so she got mad at me when I left to see some relatives over a holiday once. I was gone for a few days, so when I got back she ran up on the couch, looked right at me, and pissed right on the couch cushion. She also didn't like the younger cats using her litter box. So she'd wiz right in front of her box to let me know she was upset with it's current contents and wanted it cleaned. We basically had to put her box in a separate area that the younger ones couldn't reach.

For the belly stroking thing, I think it depends on the cat. I've had a couple that wouldn't have let me do it, but the three I have now don't really seem to mind it too much. My older cat actually likes it, and she'll just lay there on my desk, on her side, to get her belly rubbed. My two boys aren't even 2 years yet, so sometimes they want their belly rubbed, and sometimes they'll use it as an excuse to wrestle with your hand.

The dog I have now is the last of the original three my wife and I started with when we got married, and she's always been a handful. Great dog, and she loves people, but she's always been a bit of a bonehead. I have a ton of stories involving her doing one ridiculous thing or another...like putting her head through the screen door or making a dog bed out of a basket of clean laundry

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My cat "Smudgey" has issues. We've been renovating this old house for what seems like forever. A few months ago once we had the new bathrooms and everything finished up here, painted the new sheetrock and had carpet installed, we moved the beds and the furniture and all our clothes n shit upstairs and now we live up here. But the cat would not come upstairs with us. We'd call to her but she was stubborn, she'd just stand at the bottom of the stairs meowing at me. Tried carrying her up with me a few times and she'd bolt right back down.

One Sunday afternoon it was very cold and it was forecast to get down into the low single digits that night. We had no heat downstairs, the pellet stove had broken (auger wouldn't turn) so our only heat source was the new electric hydronic baseboard heaters upstairs. So I decided to bring her upstairs for her own good that evening and once I had her in the bedroom I closed the door behind us before I let her go so she couldn't run right back down. She found herself a safe hiding spot under the dresser and then stayed there for a good solid month. I opened the bedrrom door the next morning and left it open so she could have gone wherever she liked. But she just stayed in her spot under that dresser. 

So we brought all her shit upstairs for her, the water fountain and her food and box and everything but she refused to come out from under there at all. Not even briefly to eat or drink or use the box which was all placed in her direct line of sight just steps away from her hidey hole. After a few weeks I did notice that she had finally used the litter box and eaten a small amount of food so she must have come out. Then she started coming over to the corner closest to my computer desk in the evenings and she'd meow at me from under there but she still wouldn't come all the way out. 

Finally after about 4 or 5 weeks she finally started venturing out from under the dresser for several minutes at a time. After a week or two of exploring her new area she felt comfortable claiming the entire master suite up here as her domain, and she stopped retreating under the dresser. She started sitting on top of my chest or in my lap whenever I was in my computer chair to the point where it became annoying. Anytime I laid down on the bed she would follow me and walk back and forth across the bed right over my head. Sometimes as I was trying to get to sleep she would poke at me with her paw to wake up and pet her and then eventually she'd lay down right next to my head and sleep.

This went on for a month or two I guess and then as the seasons changed one evening it felt rather warm so I turned on the ceiling fan. She was clearly terrified of it, both the whoosh of the scary blades and the hum of the motor. She didn't run back under the dresser but she stayed away from the fan and she stopped eating her food, even though I had turned the fan off. Didn't eat for about a week. I even tried changing her food but no luck. Then one morning I woke to find her standing on my bedside table meowing at the fan which wasn't even on. Then out of the blue she bolted for the stairs and now she lives downstairs again, won't come back upstairs. I can coax her up to the 2nd step but no farther.

Problem is all her shit's upstairs now, and it's a total construction zone downstairs. So every morning now I come down to the disaster area we call a kichen and she meows like crazy and walks figure 8's between my feet. I have to turn on the water faucet in the farmhouse sink to a slow steady trickle and let her jump up and stick her head under there to drink. We do this several times a day now because she won't drink from a bowl of standing water, and I don't want to bring her little kitty fountain down and get all this filthy dust and debris in it. We converted the living room into our woodshop where we made the kitchen cabinets & doors and we rip down pine to make trim and she's been using the perpetual pile of sawdust under the table saw for her bathroom facilities.

This has been going on for about 2 weeks now so I need to decide if I should bring all her crap back downstairs and try to set up an area for her even though we don't have any rooms actually finished yet down there. Or should I force her to come live upstairs with us again until the kitchen is done at least? I think I'll probably leave her downstairs for now, she does seem happier down there. And when the time comes to demo the plaster walls and ceilings in the living & dining rooms then I'll have to force her back upstairs for her own good because the dust that plaster kicks up is rather toxic. And also she killed a rather large mouse the other night so I'm hoping maybe she can get the rest of them for me too.

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3 hours ago, SurgicalBrute said:

 I was basically her person, so she got mad at me when I left to see some relatives over a holiday once. I was gone for a few days, so when I got back she ran up on the couch, looked right at me, and pissed right on the couch cushion.

Yeah that's just about how my son reacted the first time I left him for 4 days to go to MDF in 2018. I was his person and he wouldn't even look at me or respond to me when I showed up at my sister's to pick him up Monday. Then later on he started making some comments but I gave him some leeway since I felt guilty about leaving him for so long. Took him a long time until I could leave him with anyone again even for an hour or two, he would always panic and ask me 1,000 times if I was sure I was really coming back.

I had left him previously to go to MDF in 2014 when he was a 4 month old baby, but obviously he doesn't remember that and he was still home in familiar surroundings with his mom the whole time. For subsequent MDF's I had to bring them both along with me and get a nice hotel suite for us all because even though she was a full grown adult, she didn't like being left home alone with the baby for 4 days either. Don't think she pissed on the couch when I got back but I might have been sleeping on the couch. Either way I thought I'd never hear the end of it in 2014. But then those 2 years that we went to Baltimore as a family we had to board the cat back home, who by all reports was absolutely terrified and miserable during her entire stay at the animal hospital for 4 days causing us all much grief. So either way I knew each May someone was always gonna be pissed off at me for leaving them alone.

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When my eldest was only about 3 I was booked in for a long haul, across the country to Perth, Perth to Darwin, Darwin to Perth, back to Darwin and home. It was one of my last long hauls and probably the straw the broke the camel's back. I'd been on local runs since she was born with only a few overnight absences, but we knew the trip was coming so we tried to speak about it and make it easier for the kid to accept that I wasn't going to be around for 3-4 weeks. A few weeks before I was due to go we decided to take her in the truck to show her what Dad did, it was only a local run but we were on the road for 13 hours. The day after that trip she told her mother she was ok with me going away because she didn't want to spend such a long time in the truck.

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15 hours ago, JonoBlade said:

I sold a couple of boxes of Regiments of Renown Citadel (Games Workshop) armies. These cost (I think) about £10 each in 1987 and sold for about £40 in 2022. I guess with inflation that is about even. And made in UK too. Can you imagine?

I also had/have a bunch of Grenadier miniatures which was a US company but pretty much all of the ones I had were made under license in New Zealand. Again, can you imagine? Products used to be made under license in different countries (even backwaters like NZ) so it kept local industry going, rather than getting everything made in China. These things weren't super cheap but they were still affordable and had more inherent value because of it.

Get. Off. My. Lawn.

 

Was indeed the case with most things - here in Australia we produced military aircraft, buses, locomotives etc all under licence.

But than Paul fucking Keating decided to free Australian workers from the production line (his near exact words).

 

 

I got rid of all my Warhammer stuff a long time ago but sold it cheap given back then no body was willing to pay a ton for plastic minis.  Apparently I did sell my Orks too cheaply - apparently they were painted quite well but I didn't see it.  

 

These days it's mainly WWII, American Civil War and some Vikings for a nifty little system called Saga.

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    • Whichever tier of thrash metal you consigned Sacred Reich back in the 80's/90's they still had their moments.  "Ignorance" & "Surf Nicaragura" did a great job of establishing the band, whereas "The American Way" just got a little to comfortable and accessible (the title track grates nowadays) for my ears.  A couple more records better left forgotten about and then nothing for twenty three years.  2019 alone has now seen three releases from Phil Rind and co.  A live EP, a split EP with Iron Reagan and now a full length.

      Notable addition to the ranks for the current throng of releases is former Machine Head sticksman, Dave McClean.  Love or hate Machine Head, McClean is a more than capable drummer and his presence here is felt from the off with the opening and title track kicking things off with some real gusto.  'Divide & Conquer' and 'Salvation' muddle along nicely, never quite reaching any quality that would make my balls tingle but comfortable enough.  The looming build to 'Manifest Reality' delivers a real punch when the song starts proper.  Frenzied riffs and drums with shots of lead work to hold the interest.


      There's a problem already though (I know, I am such a fucking mood hoover).  I don't like Phil's vocals.  I never had if I am being honest.  The aggression to them seems a little forced even when they are at their best on tracks like 'Manifest Reality'.  When he tries to sing it just feels weak though ('Salvation') and tracks lose real punch.  Give him a riffy number such as 'Killing Machine' and he is fine with the Reich engine (probably a poor choice of phrase) up in sixth gear.  For every thrashy riff there's a fair share of rock edged, local bar act rhythm aplenty too.

      Let's not poo-poo proceedings though, because overall I actually enjoy "Awakening".  It is stacked full of catchy riffs that are sticky on the old ears.  Whilst not as raw as perhaps the - brilliant - artwork suggests with its black and white, tattoo flash sheet style design it is enjoyable enough.  Yes, 'Death Valley' & 'Something to Believe' have no place here, saved only by Arnett and Radziwill's lead work but 'Revolution' is a fucking 80's thrash heyday throwback to the extent that if you turn the TV on during it you might catch a new episode of Cheers!

      3/5
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    • https://www.metalforum.com/blogs/entry/52-vltimas-something-wicked-marches-in/
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    • https://www.metalforum.com/blogs/entry/48-candlemass-the-door-to-doom/
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    • Full length number 19 from overkill certainly makes a splash in the energy stakes, I mean there's some modern thrash bands that are a good two decades younger than Overkill who can only hope to achieve the levels of spunk that New Jersey's finest produce here.  That in itself is an achievement, for a band of Overkill's stature and reputation to be able to still sound relevant four decades into their career is no mean feat.  Even in the albums weaker moments it never gets redundant and the energy levels remain high.  There's a real sense of a band in a state of some renewed vigour, helped in no small part by the addition of Jason Bittner on drums.  The former Flotsam & Jetsam skinsman is nothing short of superb throughout "The Wings of War" and seems to have squeezed a little extra out of the rest of his peers.

      The album kicks of with a great build to opening track "Last Man Standing" and for the first 4 tracks of the album the Overkill crew stomp, bash and groove their way to a solid level of consistency.  The lead work is of particular note and Blitz sounds as sneery and scathing as ever.  The album is well produced and mixed too with all parts of the thrash machine audible as the five piece hammer away at your skull with the usual blend of chugging riffs and infectious anthems.  


      There are weak moments as mentioned but they are more a victim of how good the strong tracks are.  In it's own right "Distortion" is a solid enough - if not slightly varied a journey from the last offering - but it just doesn't stand up well against a "Bat Shit Crazy" or a "Head of a Pin".  As the album draws to a close you get the increasing impression that the last few tracks are rescued really by some great solos and stomping skin work which is a shame because trimming of a couple of tracks may have made this less obvious. 

      4/5
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