Parenting allowance cuts a boon for Australia's sexiest single mothers - 10 Things
In what is either a dark day for the notion of of an equitable society or a shot in the arm for our moribund commercial sex industry, there are not-at-all-hysterical-sounding reports in the Age that three weeks of the reduced parenting allowance have seen single parents across the nation turn to sex work. Yes, with parents of children eight years and older being switched to Newstart - a change that means "more than 60,000 single parents now receive between $60 to $100 a week less", according to the piece - pole dancing venues, strip clubs and brothels have reportedly seen an influx of applications. Now, let us be clear: we're no fans of welfare cuts, particularly when they're applied by an ostensibly left-ish government and adversely affect those least able to afford them. However, the changes came in on January 1st: doesn't the idea that a $180-to-$300 shortfall is all that's standing between most single mothers and prostitution seem a wee bit… well, unlikely?
And that's not the only controversial reductions that Australians are facing: Subway briefly responded to the question posed by Matt Corby (a teenager in Perth, not the identically-named Sydney-based chart-topping folkie dreamboat and Australian Idol runner-up) as to why their footlongs were not a foot long, to get the somewhat confusing response at the official Subway Facebook page that footlong "is a registered trademark as a descriptive name for the sub sold in Subway Restaurants and not intended to be a measurement of length." The response has since been removed, but should provide a sound justification for all Australian men whose profiles on adult dating sites should be seen as being descriptive, and not intended as a measurement of length. And thank you, Corby, for refusing to be shortchanged. You're the Rosa Parks of sandwiches.
Great, now all the young people will be doing it: in another one of those irresponsible pop star moves, EDM artist and drop enthusiast Skrillex, known to his mum as Sonny Moore, managed to accidentally set his hair on fire while blowing out candles at a birthday party last week. Fearing a public backlash, TheVine hears that the powerful National Candle Association are currently preparing a new campaign "Candles don't burn hair - dubstep does".
On a satirically-related note, Gun Appreciation Day events were held all over the US on Saturday and, as Gawker reports, people used those guns to do what guns do best: accidentally injure people in totally avoidable ways. A 12 gauge shotgun accidentally discharged when being taken out of its case at the Dixie Gun and Knife Show, injuring three people; a man accidentally shot himself with .45 caliber semi-automatic while loading it in the parking lot outside the Indy 1500 Gun and Knife Show in Indianaoplis, and a gun dealer at the Medina County Gun Show managed to shoot himself while checking out a semi-automatic handgun he'd just bought off a punter. And, as with the recent spate of shootings in US schools, obviously the reason that these accidents took place was because not enough people had guns at the time. Then again, the British failed to invade again on Saturday, so entirely unnecessary maiming seems like a small price to pay. Thanks for the freedom, Second Amendment!
What do you get for the Arcade Fire fan that has everything? How about their church? Yes, the Grammy-winning Canadian collective are selling the converted church in Farnham, Quebec, where they recorded their last two albums, and are asking for a mere $CAN325,000 - although keep in mind that it needs a new roof so, much like the second half of Neon Bible, it needs some fixing up. On the other hand, the listing makes clear that the pews are included so there's a saving right there.
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is continuing his campaign to roll back all the progress made between Israel and Palestine in the name of political gain by announcing that any suggestion that a Palestinian state should be established as per the pre-1967 Green Line (as in, land that Israel captured in the Six-Day War) can go fuck itself. Such a move would put Hamas "400 metres from my home" he declared in a television interview ahead of tomorrow's election, not mentioning all those settlements that he's been playfully building in the disputed zone. It's expected that Netanyahu will probably maintain power but be forced into a coalition with the ultra-nationalist Jewish Home party, which should really calm things down in the region.
Music lovers and nerds are outraged, and not unreasonably, at the makers of Glee for their gentle, melodic version of Sir Mixalot's timeless 'Baby Got Back' which aired in a new episode this week. Sure, it's a cover - but it's almost note-for-note a lift of nerd-rock hero Jonathan Coulton's cover from four years ago, which replaced the beats'n'rap with jangling banjo and sweet, sweet melody. The AV Club has a comparison up, but here's Coulton's (rad) version - the Glee one's the same, but with autotune. It'd be a hard case to win in court (plagiarism for arrangement is especially hard to prove), but it appears Coulton's just taking the high road by calling Glee's producers a bunch of dicks. Which is, let's be honest, fair.
Today in Justin Bieber news: it's nothing but wins for the Biebs at the moment with reports that a $US9 million suit against him for damaging the hearing of a woman who attended one of his concerts has been dropped, despite her plaintive claims that he incited the crowd by "waving his arms in a quick and upward motion", which is basically assault. And also everything's on track for the release of his mum's first cinematic effort: an anti-abortion film which she's executive produced. Crescendo will, according to mama Bieber Pattie Mallette, "encourage young women all over the world, just like me, to let them know that there is a place to go, people who will take care of you and a safe home to live in if you are pregnant and think you have nowhere else to turn." Whether "a safe home to live in" is actually a euphemism for "the Australian sex industry" has yet to be confirmed by the Age. In comedy, that's what we call a "callback".
The Guardian is reporting that UK Prime Minister David Cameron's set to make his hey-look-Eurozone-I-just-want-to-be-friends speech around the middle of the week amidst reports that the UK is looking to be heading towards another recession and honestly, these foreigners with their spicy foods and their confusing road signs. He's likely to call for a referendum on whether the UK should stay in the Eurozone following his likely victory in the 2015 election, although given that Scotland are planning to have their own secession-from-the-UK referendum around the same time, maybe it's not the best time to totally go it alone.
And finally, start your week on an adorable note with this video of two dogs Skyping each other, because hell: it's Monday and we need something. Don't judge, just love.