Learning how to write

It seems an odd title I know, since I do know how to write.  And I like to think that as far as grammar goes I keep the mistakes to reasonable levels; although some pedants might argue my use of the word ‘reasonable’ when it comes to something as important as grammar. Smile with tongue out  Still, I suppose at least I know my failings and I do try to improve on these skills.  Especially now that getting HDs is somewhat dependent on my ability to not only string together logical arguments but also have perfect grammar and AGLC.

I also have a nasty habit of abusing the English language … sigh Crying face so I’m outing myself here Surprised smile.  Any of you who have ever received an email from me will know exactly what I’m talking about.   And then there’s my very bad habit of failing to give context to statements.  Sadly I am often misunderstood and I cannot blame anyone but me for that.  I do a really bad job of explaining things.  In short, I am a sloppy writer/communicator … and it’s a problem.

The problem isn’t quite so bad when I get email responses answering some of my question but then noting the writer has no idea what “that” refers to.  (and here you have another prime example of sloppy writing … Winking smile).  It’s not even hugely problematic when people choose to argue with me in some online forum and taking offence at my statement – when we’re on exactly the same page but I have expressed my thoughts differently.  Not sure if that one counts as ‘sloppy’ or being obtuse – but either way it does point out that there is a major problem with my communication style.

Some things are easy to communicate.  For example not many people have been told I love them – if I’ve told you there’s no doubt that I do love you (so far I have not simply stopped loving anyone – which seems unusual even to me but there you go Smile with tongue out).  However, I have been told I’m somewhat flirtatious and have been hit on by men who are sure I’m interested in them (so do I change how I interact with people in the future to avoid any embarrassing incidents or just chalk it up to experience?)  … Oh look, another flaw in my thinking Surprised smile  … maybe there is no such thing as ‘easy communication’ but only ‘sloppy communication skills’?  eeeeeekkkkkkk now it’s getting messy to boot.

And all I really wanted to say is that I need to improve how I write – so that when I do exams my answer is so clear the marker is in no doubt what I mean to say; when I write assignments there is no confusion as to which Act applies to what and so on.

It’s hard to say which particular writing offence is my worst … sometimes in an effort to be brief I leave out important details that really do change the proposition.  Sometimes I discuss a couple of ideas and then fail to differentiate as to which “that” I refer to in drawing some conclusion.  Then sometimes when I draw conclusions I can be fairly accused of drawing a long bow … although in my defence I like to think that when something looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and waddles like a duck it is, in all probability, a duck!  Although try telling that to a duck that thinks it’s an eagle Sad smile.

But why would I worry about that when my writing skills seem to be reasonable and I do better than merely okay in my studies?  Would you believe that I worry about stuffing up my client’s chances if I don’t get things articulated in just the right way?  What if I end up working for, say a mining company, and something I’ve written can be interpreted in a totally different light and that in turn leads to a whole lot of people being financially damaged by my mistake?  It could happen – never say never in the legal game – the improbable is not impossible; and sometimes a whole lot rides on the difference between using the word OR and AND, such tiny little words that pack a whole lot of punch Surprised smile.

Don’t think that’s a far-fetched idea either – think about how much litigation revolves around the interpretation of some part of some Act that isn’t quite clear.  I remember sitting in court listening for some three hours while a barrister explained his argument that the interpretation of the Act by his learned colleague was absolutely flawed and therefore the whole case depended on the court seeing that his interpretation was the only one that mattered.

It was a loooooong three hours (was it really three hours or did it really just feel that long? Confused smile) – I remember even the judges yawning, and fidgeting, and finally when the barrister complained that his submission had been limited to a mere 20 pages one of the judges remarked “yes, and I note that you managed to find the smallest font still visible to the naked eye to make the most of the 20 pages”.*  I love a judge with a sense of humour Smile with tongue out.

I guess the poor judges might have been saved the tedium had the original drafters of that particular Act paid a bit more attention to the language they used.

Then again, some argumentative jerks have been known to argue not because the other person was wrong but because they expressed their position awkwardly.  Again outing myself as I once won an argument with someone near and dear to me wholly on account of being able to argue the way he’d expressed himself – he was right, I knew he was right, but what he’d said could be interpreted in another way.  So I argued … and when he finally threw his hands in the air and called an end to the argument I owned up and told him which bit of his statement had made him ‘wrong’ despite being right.

I guess ^that’s the reason why some of my family and friends think I will make a great lawyer … Embarrassed smile

Anyway, I still have to work on my written expression – and that’s the next challenge in my study career – to get on top of sloppy communication skills and ace the language thingy.

Because you know, none of us  want to be misunderstood Winking smile

OR this version wlEmoticon-winkingsmile.png

Take care out there in Banksterland  Winking smile

Oh and if I haven’t told you in a while … you know who ‘you’ are – I love you Flirt female Red heartSend a kissSmile with tongue out


Lady Rosie xxx


*please note the disclaimer that this is not word for word what the judge said – I guess I was laughing too hard to really remember everything verbatim Smile with tongue out

Exams and other bruises

It’s the pointy end of the semester, the week where you have no lectures or tutorials (unless you have a super duper awesome lecturer who takes pity on you and gives your class a revision tutorial – especially when these take the form of a pep talk Winking smile).  The time when you’re reading through your study notes and wondering if you’re going to remember enough of this stuff when you’re in exams.

This semester is the first time I’ve come across a take-home exam in this degree and I had two to complete.  When I first saw that in the unit outlines I wasn’t sure if this was a bonus or if it was a trap.  I’ve now come to the conclusion that it is definitely a trap Smile with tongue out.

Here’s the thing, when you rock up in your exam room you know that you have a limited time in which to answer all the questions.  You know you have to at least attempt every question because you might get some of the easy marks in a brief outline of your answer.  With enough planning you can figure out how much time each type of question will take.  You know you can’t go into detail in any answer because, well, you know … time.

One of the things I did to figure out how to plan an essay type question was I printed out 800 words of a sample answer for one of my units and then timed myself to see how many words I could actually write legibly in 40 minutes.  I’d already figured out that 40 minutes would be the maximum time I could allocate to the essay question (going by a previous exam made available by the university).   I managed to write only 649 words in that time … I could have written faster and achieved more but then the marker wouldn’t have been able read it and that would be a bit of a fuck up methinks!

So then I dummy up an answer on a random topic that is examinable – and that’s to figure out how much detail I can put into each point that has to be covered.  Remembering your marks get into the distinction and high distinction level the more depth of knowledge you can show.   Of-course the trick here is to remember the nuances; and always talk about the prickly end of the pineapple.

And this helps me with the pre-exam panic (I don’t have the time to panic while I’m actually in an exam even if I am stunned by the War and Peace length exam question).

Take-home exams are not like this.   I understand that there is this this idea that take-home exams are easy; trust me, they’re not.  Take-home exams come with so many levels of evil that makes a 3 hour equity exam with said War and Peace tome question feel like you’re lying on the beach with some honey bringing you an endless supply of your favourite tipple and nothing better to do than think about what you might fancy for dinner.

Take-home exams suck …. totally.

Remember those 649 words I can write in 40 minutes?  One of my take-homes was a maximum of 4500 words, the other 3500 words … and just because it says ‘maximum’ you’d be an idiot to think that maybe you can get by with 2000.  It doesn’t quite work like that, not if you want to address the main issues and then the curly bits.  So I spent days working on them … for a couple of reasons.

First, I wouldn’t mind keeping my HD and secondly (probably this is really number one) – I didn’t want my lecturers thinking I was a slacker who put in a minimum amount of effort.  Funny how I don’t care what most people think about me but I am seriously committed to working hard so my lecturers know I care enough about my studies to actually, you know … study Smile with tongue out.

And do you know how I feel about my efforts after all of those hours analysing the question and then setting out the best possible answer I could come up with?  Not great … that’s how I feel.  I wonder if I analysed the question enough, wonder if I identified the right points I needed to address.  I worry I didn’t give a good analytical answer.   I second-guess myself just as much as I do after a three hour exam but I’ve spent so much more time on it.

Take-home exams are a trap … give me a tortuous invigilated exam any day of the week – and here I am just hoping that today’s song choice won’t be me after I get my results back … I live in hope after all Rainbow

Oh, and I think I know how to approach this whole bank fraud thingy from an academic perspective now … so it’s all coming together quite nicely thank you Nerd smile

Take care out there in Banksterland peeps Peace


Lady Rosie

The social media trap

I’d call myself a bit of a social media expert … after all, I have a BA in Internet Communications and spend a lot of time in various online groups and see how social networking works (or doesn’t).  Last semester we spent a fair bit of time on defamation law and of-course there was that attempt at suing me for defamation from some turkey who really ought to be sued for defaming me in the first place (among other things) … but hey, I’m kinda busy atm Smile with tongue out and I don’t want to get into this tit for tat litigation thing that a few people have going on.

But there is a fair bit of stuff happening in defamation litigation involving social media atm that has a few of my family and friends concerned, not just for me but for our freedom of speech in general.  I’ve written about SLAPP before (that’s a strategic lawsuit against public participation) and how defamation law is abused to stop people from discussing issues of public concern; especially on social media platforms like Facebook, where a lot of the current crop of litigation seems to stem from.

I don’t want to talk about the legal implications, I’d much rather share my thoughts about my journey through this acceptance of an online persona that leaves a huge digital footprint – Google my name and there’s an awful lot that is about me.  I’ve set up Facebook to not allow browsers to find my comments but I’d bet a few of them still find their way into the public forum.

One of the reasons I was careful in the beginning of starting to use Facebook and other apps is because of the questions raised during my studies (I’d also note here that the reason I got so involved with so many apps out there is because of my studies Eye rolling smile).  I was very careful about not adding people I knew through the blog because they were caught up in banking litigation like I was.  I would be super careful that when I commented on newspaper stories online that I kept the tone just fine and dandy (still managed to get blocked on a few haha Smile with tongue out).  I tried to watch my Ps & Qs.

So why was I careful about who I added as a ‘friend’ on say, Facebook?  Initially it was because I didn’t want to have the expectation that all I post is bank stuff …. I sometimes share bank stories but my Fb wall is supposed to be a social experience for me.  I share funny videos, music videos, quirky things and some downright unPC stuff that tickles my funny bone.   A part of me only wanted people who really were friends in my real Facebook account.  I was so anal about it I had a couple of ‘fake’ accounts just so I could play games like Farm Town and Castleville and ‘friend’ people to my hearts content and they’d never get to know the real me.

The real me was pretty much non-existent following my bank experience so I played with developing a new me online and seeing if that could translate to being a whole new, functioning me offline too.  Sometimes I’d use the fake me’s email accounts to post comments on stories about banks (after real me was banned hehe – oh my, maybe I’m not as sweet and lovely and straight down the line as I like to pretend?  oooops, my bad Embarrassed smile).

But the more I studied, the more I learned about me in the process, I grew back into my own skin.  I still worried that my digital footprint would hurt any future career, especially this blog – everything I write on here is open to scrutiny – people will judge.  Will it cost me a job?  I know family and friends were really worried about supporting me because, you know, they might need to get another loan one day and they wouldn’t want the banks to know they supported me or anything (that’s probably one of the biggest reasons fraud in major corporations can flourish – who feels powerful enough to stand up and be counted?  Can affect your job, finances, standing in the community – say the wrong thing about the wrong company/person and your life can effectively be over – that’s mass censorship based on nothing more than fear – and it’s bloody hard to beat).

There’s this frightening phenomenon at the moment where self-righteous do-gooders feel it is their duty to contact employers of Facebook users who dare to post their personal opinion on refugees in a public forum and demand these people be sacked.  They then brag about how many people they have gotten sacked and feel good about doing this – never mind the fact that the people sacked have mortgages and now their kids will probably be facing poverty because of a smear campaign that is unwarranted.  I’m not sure the particular refugee advocate I am referring to even gets the hypocrisy of her actions, but it’s social media – apparently it’s okay for one person to destroy people’s lives because they can’t agree on something.

So I’ve always been a bit circumspect about what I post and how I word things (I have pretty average, run of the mill opinions and the most controversial thing I’ll say is that I think banksters and those who allow them to strip assets off customers with illegal/dodgy scams need to be thrown in jail and the key accidentally lost).

But recently I’ve developed a bit of a rebellious streak – I’ve accepted that there will always be people who judge me by what I write on any given day (and sometimes I write on a bad day when the world is total crap and my words won’t be measured).  Any potential employer that sees this blog and doesn’t see the personal journey I have had that makes me a bloody good employee will miss out on having a great team player who understands the meaning of ethics and morals.   That’s life.

I’ve started accepting and sending out friend requests on Facebook to all sorts of people who couldn’t  be considered ‘friends’ in any real sense of the world.  I’ve now got a large cohort of bank victims being subjected to my odd sense of humour and my occasional (or maybe not so occasional) foul mouth (is it still a foul mouth when you type excessive expletives?).  If you have a love of the irreverent, the downright odd or just like to look on the bright side of life (and don’t mind reminders that Christmas is coming  313 days before the event) then maybe I’m the Facebook friend for you hahahah Smile with tongue out.

I would note that I fell foul of my own brother once and he unfriended me on Facebook!!!  (yes, that really did need the extra exclamation marks Winking smile).  What was my great offence?  Erm, okay, I posted this

gay marriage

and when he made a derogatory comment I told him it was totally unfair that marriage could only make heteros miserable … oh dear Nyah-Nyah.  It’s all good now but gees, after what happened with the bank we had a pretty difficult relationship anyway – and this is just something I sometimes give (fleeting) consideration to.  Apologies to all deeply emotionally attached people on either side of this particular fence, but I have other things to get worked up about and at the moment I have a pretty short fuse on all things religious.  And yes, I find lawsuits against Christian bakers who refuse to bake a gay wedding cake to be a batty idea ….  The law should not exist to kiss anybody’s booboo better (sh*t it didn’t give a damn about mine and mine wasn’t hurt feelings FFS … oh dear, my happy bubble just got pricked Crying face).

Best sign off and get on with it … and just to end on a happy note (reinflating the happy bubble) enjoy Smile

oh and I found a really funny video but that one made it on my Facebook wall, because, you know, at least it’s (mostly) private so I won’t be judged too harshly hahaha Smile with tongue out

Hang in there and take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile


Lady Rosie

Understanding expert opinion

This is just a very quick post about something that has been bugging me for a long time.  When I say a long time, I really mean since I was a child and being told what to do by people who knew better than me – which judging by how often this happens this is pretty much everybody.  And doesn’t everybody really like to make sure I know it!  Smile with tongue out

It doesn’t matter how old I am or how much I know from serious studies – whenever I state an opinion or query some action (like why would the government do *insert whatever crap thing the government has done now* ) and put forth alternatives, all and sundry go all Ygritte on me Sad smile.   Because there are experts who say it’s all good and I am wrong to have my opinion (ergo I know nothing).

It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside when I’m told I’m doing it wrong, or I’m wrong to feel how I feel, or I should stop talking about what is happening (this is not specifically about the government ignoring calls for a Royal Commission into banking).  Apparently only experts are allowed to have an opinion and ignorant me needs to get with the program

Don’t get me started on the fact that I have armchair experts tell me that I can’t be a lawyer and write this blog so  I need to stop blogging about what happened to us and not talk about any problems I might have during the semester because somehow this will lessen my validity.  When I counter that argument and say that this adds to my portfolio of useful life experiences and shows my willingness to engage with deeper analysis of legal problems I am often on the receiving end of “the look” Surprised smile.

Mind you, I’m sure I am the giver of “the look” when I get sucked into arguments on some legal point and the armchair expert (who acquired their legal knowledge by osmosis) knowledgably informs me that when SCT* happened to X** the law screwed them over because of STIR.*** Silly me thinks that maybe they want to know whether poor X could have been saved by the law or wondering if they might get caught up in the same web of deceit (usually the context of the conversation leads me to assume they want to test the state of my current legal knowledge).

Even when I call them out on the DSB**** by stating the law and the consequences/remedies (sometimes I’ll even know a case on point) and ask if they’re sure they have the details right (the devil’s in the details) they confidently tell me that is exactly what happened and obviously I’m wasting my time studying law because I remain the feminine version of Ygritte’s Jon Snow Eye rolling smile.  Looking on the bright side this does prepare me for stepping into any professional role where I will be derided by other experts because my opinion based on my understanding of complex matters is plain old wrong.

The problem with expert opinion is that the opinion part gets confused with set.in.stone fact and anyone who doesn’t agree with the majority view is a denier, a conspiracy theorist or just an idiot.  Have a look at politicians and the kindyesque shenanigans our current crop of parliamentarians are up to; they pick an expert opinion that reflects their agenda and state it as fact i.e. there is no need for a RC into banking because there isn’t a real problem – the banks have explained it all in a totally believable way.

Or think of the scientists copping flak for not agreeing with climate change and economists who argue with current economic policies,  the personal attacks on the integrity of these individuals are breathtaking and abhorrent. (so we’re all entitled to our opinion as long as everybody else has the same opinion?)  Watch any debate on the telly and there are at least two sides – and which side wins invariably depends on who puts forward the better argument.

So who are the experts whose opinion counts more than mine?  Well, realistically they are just people like me – people who have an interest in a certain subject/object and then study the arse out of it.  They talk to other people who share their interests and the top of the whizz experts really delve into the dark side of the matter.  And they write about it, and share their conclusions (these would be the opinions they have formed given all of the evidence) – there are no guarantees that they are right in the God-like sense.  It’s just they hold a set of beliefs based on their knowledge.  The quality of their knowledge is not dependent on whether the majority agrees with their opinion.  Over time some people might get stuck in one particular mind-set and be immovable from that position regardless of new information that arises but most experts continually reassess whether their original opinion is still valid.

I guess that makes me an expert in my field … and I’m really enjoying the challenge of figuring out what’s what and what matters and how to fix the system that allows banksters to get away with dastardly deeds.  And yes, there’s a part of me that would really like to work in a bank and sort it out within its hallowed halls – sometimes a good bog-out is quite therapeutic Smile with tongue out

Anyhow, that’s all I have time for just now, a thrilling week of readings awaits :P – have a great week and take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile


Lady Rosie xxx

*some crap thing  ** invariably some step-brother of the boss’ niece’s step-mother-in-law’s next door neighbour *** some totally illogical reason **** deeply suspicious bullshit

Running on empty (or running out of catchy titles for blog posts)

Or the past always comes back to bite you on the bum Crying face

Apologies for my prolonged absence – things have been … erm, interesting here Disappointed smile, as I’m not one to make mysterious statements and leave people guessing (hey, I’m writing a warts and all blog – it seems counterintuitive to go all shy now right? Smile with tongue out) I guess I can fess up and say that last semester kind of broke me.  It was a whole lot of things ganging up on me that combined to present the perfect storm really (metaphorically speaking – I would have hated to have been in that shit storm if it was an actual, physical shit storm Surprised smile).

People who only know me because of what happened with the bank may get the impression that this was the first “bad thing” to happen in my life … but family and long-standing friends know that since my husband and I got together we seem to have lurched from  one  disaster to another.  Life has been kind to us in an unkind kinda way.  Even though our family has seen more disasters than seems fair for one family to handle we seem to have had a reasonably good outcome considering the circumstances.

For example our premmie son didn’t die (with just one factor different he would not have lived – we got a lucky break) – this same son has had so many near misses I’m beginning to think he’s got a fair bit of cat in him (he almost died in a car accident and a couple of years later almost died from Wegener’s Granulomatosis, there’s also been other near-misses that didn’t involve hospital visits).  I won’t bore you with the sad-sack stories of my own medical disasters but some of that became a part of the perfect storm.

To put it simply; even though we have faced adversity, we seem to have had it easier than others who have faced similar circumstances and I am both aware and grateful that we got the breaks (I’m guessing my guardian angel was on holidays trying to recuperate from saving my sorry arse all the time when the semester from hell rocked up).  Even with this bank thing – we didn’t go bankrupt and hubby started looking on the bright side long before I started accepting things (for me the only bright side is that I ended up going back to uni and have finished one degree and I got the confidence to start the law degree – no idea where life will take me but I know this wouldn’t have happened but for the bank screwing us over – and yes, still wishing I had my old life back … Confused smile).

I have always talked about the crap fest that seems to happen to us, not because I feel sorry for myself, but because I figure maybe by sharing someone else may benefit from my experience and either handle things differently/better or just know they’re not alone in having to deal with stuff.  When I first started sharing my story with the bank via the website and blog I had no idea just how big this thing really is and how hard it would be to get the system cleaned up – six years later and I’m still hitting my head against a brick wall.   Although there seems to be a turn-around in the fortunes of customers at the moment – great in one way as I really am happy for them but it does tend to amplify my own losses.  Just as well I’m a big girl now eh?  Smile with tongue out

So I talk about all the bad stuff that happens to us – except I don’t – not all of it – there was one thing that happened that family and close friends knew about but we don’t talk about it.  I don’t think I’ll ever wrap my head around it or get over the mix of feelings.  And while I won’t say what this thing was trust me it was big, it was ugly, too many families have to deal with it and too many people excuse it.  And this thing was a discussion topic in one of my units for what seemed like every lecture and tutorial (I’m sure it wasn’t but it still feels like it’s all we talked about).  I let the lecturer know but that didn’t help.  I put the anxiety down to the massive work-load and the medical problem that affects me intermittently (an injury from a car accident that gives me curry every now and then making life a bit unpleasant); I told myself that I could look at the content of the unit in a dispassionate way just like lawyers should.

Silly me didn’t allow for the fact that I’ve been a mother longer than a law student and I’d dealt with the situation but not with how I felt about it Embarrassed smile (the embarrassed emoticon is because I’m a trained counsellor and should have seen it coming a mile away … le sigh).  And of-course every week I told myself that now that we’ve dealt with it in class I don’t have to worry about it again – not realising that this was the topic the lecturer had chosen to teach the whole damned unit through and that it would be right there every week in some shape or form.   Fast forward to exams and this unit was the second exam – I think I felt myself break when I read the questions …

So not only did I give limited attention to the blog during that time but since that exam I’ve been pretty much AWOL from life.   We’d already booked an eleven day break in Phuket so at least I had some warm weather to look forward to.  I managed to read five and a half novels in that time and still spent a lot of time doing stuff (read Dan Brown and Terry Pratchett if you’re interested Smile with tongue out).  We even managed to catch up with an old friend while we were there so that was good.

Do I feel ready to put ye olde nose back to the grindstone next week?  Probably not, but I know how to pick myself up, dust myself off, spit out the blood and get back into it … anyway, I have nothing else planned so may as well ace this semester eh? Winking smile

Oh and I did okay with all my units so no need to stress about having failed one, so sex ed remains the only thing I have ever failed in my study career (as I patiently explained to my teacher, it really doesn’t help me to know what all the internal bits are called because if anything goes wrong with them I will have to see a doctor who knows all the names Smile with tongue out).

Hopefully my energy levels will rise to my normal level of exhaustion by next week – I’ve certainly given my body and soul a break, although now I feel guilty that I didn’t manage to do all those semester break odd jobs I’d promised myself I’d get around to … oh well, can’t win them all.

So enjoy today’s music video …


Remember – take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile


Lady Rosie

… exams

That’s it, exams are here and I am feeling more than a little underdone; and part of the reason is probably that I’m pretty sure I get it.  I get the nuances of law, that the approach you take depends on who is asking you to help them; that there is no black and white but more than a touch over 50 shades of grey.  Right and wrong don’t come into it; there is just the law (and equity but let’s not go there this fine morning haha Smile with tongue out).  What you get when you go to court isn’t justice per se – you get the law (only winners are grinners in this game).

I worry about spotting the issues when the pressure is on, although I have noticed I do that much better in a quick glance at a problem than I do after long and careful analysis (the luxury of time makes me far too creative in dealing with issues … thinking equity here where there’s a few ways to skin that legal cat Surprised smile).  For one exam I am really, really worried about fish – well, actually, only one kind of fish – the red herring.  There is one lecturer who has spent the whole semester posing problems with the veritable school of red herrings happily hiding in amongst the issues he’d like us to address; it makes for awesome mind-gymnastics and is closer to real life than most hypotheticals we work through that teach us the rules of law.

He also had a habit of giving our hypothetical clients unsavoury habits (like breaking the law) but when it boiled down to it there was a way to resolve the issues in their favour because despite being awful people they did have a good case to present to the court and their numerous misdemeanours had nothing to do with the case in hand.  It has been a great lesson in understanding we won’t always feel sympathy with clients but can still do our job.

For me this has been a particularly difficult thing to wrap my head around because all semester long I felt that I was representing a certain bank and helping them to screw over customers because the law was on their side.  I have a lot more respect for the lawyers who work for the banks; while some sociopaths no doubt enjoy that kind of work and the suffering they inflict I think I understand the reasons for the statistics on depression in the legal profession much better now.

As I get ready to meet my doom (haha, slight exaggeration really Smile with tongue out) I thought I’d share this song – because well, I can, and it reminds me of the good old days – you know, when my memory was great, hopes high, the future bright and the music awesomely good fun.

Anyway, take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile (note there’s yet another inquiry to make submissions to – will blog about it after exams).


Lady Rosie Peace

The study blues – or not

So I survived finishing four assignments in three weeks, I think I must have written about the equivalent of War and Peace, and now I just have to hope that this time I didn’t edit out the stuff they’re looking for Surprised smile (yes, did that for the migration unit, had it, covered it and then edited it out … oops, my bad Smile with tongue out).   I thought I’d feel better and be able to relax a little now the work is done, get on with some extra-curricular law stuff and all that … but no, here I am getting ready for exams.  Unbelievable that we are already in the home straight and looking at exams!

The stress factor for me remains all of the stuff I’m learning about how the law would have saved our financial bacon – it’s beginning to feel like all of the original conspiracy theories I held and tried to ‘get over’ are actually true.  Surely with so much case law covering so many aspects of our case we should … but there’s no point rehashing this is there?  We got thoroughly screwed and it’s just learning about all the ways we should have been represented is a bit of a downer really Disappointed smile.

I am thinking of adding a new section here on the blog for case notes and stuff – but at the moment I just don’t have my energy levels screwed up to ‘Energizer Bunny’ so I suspect this will be a work in progress.  Although I did start up a new wiki page last week that I hope to populate with relevant banking law and case notes – again, a work in progress and so far it is private (that way I can pretend I have gotten further than simply naming it and picking a nice looking template Smile with tongue out).

This story might interest those of you who think your bank led you up the garden path with their prettily worded and totally useless  Banking Code of  Practice … turns out a judge decided that the code does have contractual force – woohoo.  Stick that in your pipe and smoke it *** Smile with tongue out.   Although I suspect the High Court will overturn the ruling (but no cynicism here, honest) this is a step in the right direction; why bother having a code of conduct if you’re not going to follow it?

I also listened in on the Senate Inquiry the day they heard the bank CEOs explain their banks’ behaviour in relation to the financial planners scandal.   That was a fun few hours Winking smile.   One of the things the Senators asked about was the confidentiality agreements the banks forced customers to sign as part of their settlement agreements.  They raised the same point I always make that these agreements protect criminal employees and mean more customers can fall foul of their scams because no-one is able to warn trusting customers.  It was most interesting to hear Mr Thorburn say that the NAB will not pursue people who signed a confidentiality clause and then talk about what happened to them.  That’s mighty big of the bank (overly cynical comment removed because well, no need is there?)

Oh well, that’s enough musing for today, property law awaits Open-mouthed smile (see, already getting that enthusiasm up Smile with tongue out).  I’ll leave you with a couple of songs to enjoy and yes, the first one is all about the exams hahaha

Meanwhile take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

Love Lady Rosie Open-mouthed smile

Overworked and underpaid

Some days that’s how I feel, probably because my longest employment was in the family business and doing volunteer work.  Now it’s study and just a small amount of volunteer work; so yesterday, when I hit the study wall and just couldn’t read another word of another case I took a break – and came up with this – seems to sum up my life perfectly atm Smile with tongue out

Lady Rosa's Lament

Of-course I am not passively sitting by the dock waiting for a ship that may never arrive, that would be pretty silly (while I admit to doing many silly things – that’s not one of them haha).  I am busy studying and learning a new craft, and questioning all there is.

And it seems nothing is out of bounds when it comes to questioning stuff.  It’s not just hours devoted to how the law works (really enjoying Equity BTW – and it’s fascinating/depressing to think where it could have helped us in our case – but more on that later Winking smile).

There are questions of where do I want to take this course of study – become a lawyer or work for a corporation?  And until a friend mentioned it the other day I hadn’t really considered becoming an academic … but perhaps that holds possibilities too?

Then there’s the personal stuff like who am I now?  Given all the changes in my life how many of my old ideas still hold true?  Has my cynicism made me too dark for even me to put up with?  Exactly how long can a long-suffering husband really put up with a wife who apparently does not subscribe to the idea that all women can and must multitask the crap out of life.  I literally can’t multitask – I do not even pretend to be able to do that.

Okay, so I can sit here and write this as well as drink a cup of coffee while the washing machine does its thing and the oven is taking care of breakfast (don’t ask – I can’t do the diet thing either … le sigh).  But that’s not really multitasking – I am only doing one thing and that is all I can give my attention to at this minute.  And I have to hurry through it because those books still refuse to read themselves Surprised smile [bastards – just sayin’ Smile with tongue out).

So over the next 2 weeks I have a big problem – 4 assignments due within 6 days of each other, keeping up with the normal readings/study and somehow trying to fit in being a dutiful and attentive wife on the week-ends.  Hmmm, I think one of those things is just not going to happen – sad but true.  Still, I have been busy trying to organise fishing buddies so the MOTH doesn’t notice the neglect too much Eye rolling smile.

[When I was younger I always wished I could honestly say that my husband was my best friend – now that I’m a touch older, I’ve realised that a) I really am married to my best friend and b) that there is a downside to that.  It never occurred to me that there could be a downside to that – funny eh?  Just as well that he’s okay taking a back seat to my studies, else we could be in big trouble (again).]

And then my friend told me about a Canadian case where the judge did a really great job on tearing apart pseudo law … so now I want to read that and write about it and absorb it and … guess you get the picture – but I can’t do that until I’ve got these assessments out of the way and I have a bit of breathing space … bugger Crying face.

But one thing I have learned (while waiting for my ship to come in) is that you really have to prioritise your time – some things have to wait in the greater scheme of things.  Some of those things are matters of the heart you want to give priority to (who doesn’t want to be happy and in love?  or at least happy? just give me happy Smile with tongue out).  Other things are the practical things like work, rest, play, spending time with family and all the other things that make demands on our time and energy.  But right now they have to wait – and hopefully be given enough attention to not fall apart.  (theoretically you’d be aware enough that something else suddenly got priority so that you can head problems off at the pass – but that goes back to multitasking really – can you give your all to the BIG THING requiring immediate attention and not ignore something bigger just because you haven’t noticed it? – no idea, hoping for the best here, any and all discussion on this point is probably worthwhile haha).

Sometimes you have to call a time out – I did that last week-end when I did something I have never done before but it’s made me feel like a *real* uni student Smile with tongue out – on Saturday I had a party and then a couple of girlfriends and I ended up going to Murphy’s Irish Pub in Mandurah at about 9pm – so much for studying at night.  Then on Sunday I went to ComicCon, where I met husbands number 2 & 3, although number 1 husband isn’t worried because he knows I have Buckley’s getting with them* – not sure if I should feel insulted or agree given that this is the case Smile with tongue out.  I did point out that now that I am a real lady that this would make a difference but he’s still convinced nothing will come of it (this is no doubt a great relief to Michael Shanks and Ben Browder In love never mind their beloveds hahaha).

Anyway, the washing machine is squealing at me that it’s done, the oven timer has chimed in to say it’s time to eat, the coffee is getting pitifully cold (turns out I can’t write and drink coffee at the same time … oh dear Surprised smile) so it must be time to finish and get the nose back to ye olde grindstone … story of my life haha.

Oh, and take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

Love Lady Rosie

* I have a photo of Husband #2 totally ruined by me being in the picture but the photo of Husband #3 is awesome (aided by the fact I’m not in it obviously haha).  I Photoshopped me out of the first pic and nicked the second one from Wikipedia (given that the signed one I have is a stock photo from his Stargate days Winking smile)



** oh, and for anyone who might think I’m serious …. bahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah yes, my life is tragic but I am not hehe Smile with tongue out

[edited out the guff on why I couldn’t add videos – but I figured it out, cos I’m a problem solver haha]

Sometimes the more you learn …

The more annoyed you get (you should be proud of me, annoyed wasn’t the first word that came to mind).  I’ve often discussed how my original legal eagles handled my case and that in my opinion, they didn’t even try.  Sadly for me, the more I learn at uni about how the law can be used to get justice, the more I know that I was right.  They didn’t even try.

Take the single case my lawyer emailed to me that he reckoned supported my case, National Australia Bank v Blacker (2000) 104 FCR 288.  Just a couple of months ago I cynically observed on this very blog that my lawyer couldn’t even make it past the Bs when he was looking up cases to help my cause.  Turns out it is much, much worse than that (in my humble opinion).  You see NAB v Blacker is a first year Property Law case that all law students are taught – it’s used in relation to fixtures and chattels …

Now I’m also studying Advanced Torts so have spent the last 4 odd weeks wrapping my head around defamation – which means I’m now firmly convinced that the current defamation laws exist to protect the legal fraternity from aggrieved clients who only want to discuss the failures of their legal eagles.  Having had one of the illustrious pair file a defamation suit against me just pissed me off when he did it.  Now I know that when I first discovered that he had discussed my case with my brother and told my brother and a couple of other people that I didn’t have a case and I was crazy, I should have sued the arse off him.  But I didn’t know, just like I didn’t know a lot of other stuff.

Am I worried now that I might say something that will set either of these two geniuses off and encourage them to file a defamation suit?  Nope, I only write what is true and what I can prove.  I have my brother’s affidavit, and my son was pulled into this so he also knows what my brother believed courtesy of his good friend the legal eagle.  And I’m not the one with a recorded conviction or a couple of other hearings (downloadable from Austlii, so consider that recorded and public) discussing my suitability to practice the law … just sayin’.

I’m finding the study hard going – because this semester 3 of my units are pointing out the failures of my original legal eagles.  I had equity to help me … they didn’t consider that at all from what I can gather.  Surely when someone’s livelihood is at stake you throw everything you got at it?  Where contract law let us down, equity would have been sympathetic … but it was never raised as an issue and I want to know why not.

I’m a first year law student and I thought by studying law I’d get closure, understand why I lost everything and be able to move on.  But that’s not what’s happening.  What is happening is that I see so many gaps in the system, so many flaws, so many people reaping the benefits of their profession without actually providing an adequate service.  It’s not even close to being fair, just or acceptable.

No wonder people like Shane Dowling won’t let it go and risk everything to expose the corruption (his matter was not related to bank fraud but his story about the court process is scary).

So here I am, wrapping my head around all of the options my legal team had to save our financial position and I’m thinking that this is all really, really depressing.  I have a well-honed sense of justice, I believe I have good morals and great ethics.  I believe the only time I should be looking down on anyone is when I’m helping them up.  I know that despite how much I despise these geniuses who ruined my life (lumping all of them together here, from acting bank manager right through) if I were to come across them in an emergency and they were in the deep shit I’d help them.

Not sure who else says this a lot, but it’s common in these here parts – “I wouldn’t piss on him if he was on fire” – well, that’s not who I am.  Despite how badly these people treated me, the shit they did because money was more important than people, you know what?  That’s their issue.  I think they should all be in jail for what they did – but if they were about to die and I was the only one who could help them I would (okay unlikely scenario but give me a break, I’m trying to make a point here Smile with tongue out ).

And the reason boils down to this – they deserve to be in jail but the death penalty is a tad over the top.  So while I hope the Karma bus comes along and clips them behind the ear in spectacular fashion – maybe getting a bit of what I’ve had to go through is enough?  Maybe having their life torn apart and having to start again from scratch might let them reconsider their priorities and make them decent human beings?  (okay, again with the happy bubble but gees life should be about looking after each other not tearing each other apart).

I’m still trying to rephrase, to re-form, to make a shiny new Rosie, and it’s tough going.  But the first thing I really had to learn to do was to let go of the crap – and there is so much crap surrounding my case.  I could have stayed angry but I know that the only person that would have hurt is me, and I’m kind of tired of hurting and stressing and blaming (usually myself because I did get myself into this mess, admittedly I had a lot of help from people who benefited from my disaster but hey, the buck stops with me).

Anyway, it’s Easter – a time to reflect on the bigger picture and embrace the spiritual opportunities on offer.  Have a lovely Easter and may the Easter bunny, God and the Universe bring you plenty of chocolate and blessings.  But most of all, I hope you can find some peace in your soul, even if that means doing the unbelievable and embracing forgiveness of those who destroyed you.  Remember, they don’t give a crap, they waste zero seconds every day thinking about the pain they caused you.  All you can do is look after yourself – I can’t even cheer you up and say ‘trust that this fraud will be exposed and those responsible jailed’ – because I have no faith whatsoever that our government will ever have the balls to stop this bank fraud.  They’ve had so much evidence of dodgy banks and still haven’t called for a Royal Commission – so I’m guessing they like the status quo.

Bugger that is far too depressing, so time to sign off, stay healthy, stay sane and well – live life, it’s far too short for all this bullshit.

Here’s some vids to get you through the week-end Open-mouthed smile

(Spirit in the Sky – Norman Greenbaum)

(Let it Be – Beatles)

(Somebody that I Used to Know – Gotye)

… and don’t forget, take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile

Lady Rosie xxx

Cracklin Rosie is a song about what?

There are many times when I am wont to say “I did not know that” … take that awesome song from Neil Diamond “Cracklin Rosie” (always been one of my faves and not just because my name is Rosie Smile with tongue out ).  A couple of weeks ago I found out that this song is not about a woman but a wine …  apparently Diamond heard a story about a native Canadian tribe where there were more men than women, and the men sans the fairer sex would sit around the camp fire cradling their wine.  This is from Wikipedia which also goes on to say that perhaps the Rosie is a play on rosé (okay, Wikipedia says that’s a misspelling … but I don’t buy into that interpretation, what with my utter faith in music God Mr Diamond knowing exactly what he’s doing Winking smile).  I guess I can still look on the bright side though … the song can still be my theme song – perhaps I am like a bottle of wine – simply getting better with age Open-mouthed smile.  I will be celebrating my umpteenth 21st this month – oh, so does it still count?  Thinking smileI don't know smileConfused smile I might have to snuggle with a glass of wine to ponder the conundrum Smile with tongue out.

But the whole point of bringing it up is that no matter how old we get we can always have our assumptions and beliefs challenged.

Take my reading for Criminal Law this week (6 substantial chapters of a book written in the tiniest font they could possibly get away with … but I digress Surprised smile) – it was certainly an eye opener for me.  It’s hard for me to explain the nuanced difference between what I believed the law was in relation to corporations being charged with a crime, what I had been told by a couple of lawyers and what this book explained as the current state of affairs in relation to corporations found to be breaking the law.  As far as research topics go this one sounds really promising as well – especially in light of the calls for a Royal Commission into banks and their unscrupulous activities (okay, criminal activities – they are all guilty of crimes).

The more I learn about the law and how it is meant to operate, how the courts have ruled in the (not so distant) past and how things are going now in bank fraud cases (where the bank employees have committed the fraud and the banks are taking their customers to court to pay the ultimate price) the more depressed I get.  To say I have days when my readings/lectures/tutorials trigger unwanted emotional responses is an understatement.  The more I learn, the angrier I get about how the system was used against us so that we could not possibly win even though the law was actually on our side.  We had law and equity to draw on … and got screwed over by lord knows whatCrying face.

When I first thought about starting this degree I didn’t consider becoming a lawyer and dealing with the banks on behalf of people like me.  This has not changed, rather, I am more convinced than ever that I would not be an exceptional advocate for people like me.  I fear I would hamper their case as my ‘issues’ cloud my judgment and my emotions run riot (I have visions of slapping my learned friend when s/he implies my client is a master criminal who had intended to defraud the bank, or smugly says “caveat emptor” … I take it you get the drift Smile with tongue out).

While I want to research this whole shemozzle and be a part of the change that needs to happen, I don’t’ see me making a good living out of that – and because of what happened to us I have become a convert to the “show me the money” philosophy of career choice.  So right now I’m thinking specializing in mining law with all the other laws that come into it (you know, environment, employment & corporate law) but hey, I haven’t even finished my first year yet so plenty of time to figure out where I want to be … right?

Anyway … my head is fried and I still have readings to do before heading off to tomorrow’s lectures and tutes so I’ll leave you with my favourite song about wine …

and don’t forget – take care out there in Banksterland Winking smile