1. Well I guess his death wouldn’t have gone (and shouldn’t go) unnoticed, he was charismatic enough to make headlines. I haven’t been online much today but if you’re referring more to the fact that maybe his death was put up front as “the most important news right now”, well what can you expect when they gave that much attention to Brad and Angelina’s newborn baby?

  2. Struth mate! Even I was gonna blog about it!

    It was the first thing my daughter said to me when she got home from work yesterday. Irwin’s zoo is 15 kms from me here in Brisbane.

    There’s a few features that you maybe missed.

    (1) The irony that a guy who promoted easy access to deadly creatures got his cumuppence that way. And he has always been so careless with other’s safety too as a few incidences have indicated.

    (2) The irony that he was killed not by a deadly creature but a rather benign stingray is almost pathetically tragic.

    (3) The irony that a guy who has been so careless with his own kids in regard to safety should have been tricked by this ray to orchestrate his own death. He slipped up despite everything he apparently told us we could and could not do. He failed his own exam.

    This is an unusual death — the ray’s barb entered through the sternum and plunged into his heart.(It has apparantly happened on board a fishing vessel before when a skipper was handling such a ray) I understand that this species of ray is one of very few that can flex so sharply as a ray’s barb — and I’m familiar with the critters — are mainly a problem for humans if you stand on the creature while wading. But the jab is never fatal.Of course any jab with anything into the heart is bound to have consequences.

    Irwin was also a keen supporter of John Howard here in Australia as his politics were very free enterprise ideology. He even went on record as calling Howard — “our greatest prime minister ever”.

    Which hasn’t endeared him to those who are suffering under our branch of G W Bushism.

    The other aspect is how much of an environmentalist was Irwin? I tend to see him as a tourist — that promoted interaction. That while he respected animals and such he didn’t offer a broad ecological sense of their plight under any number of pressures that are baring down on them. For him, animals in the wild were a version of animals in the zoo — such that their context seemed to be diluted in the way he so boldly interacted with them. He was first and foremost a zoo keeper as that was the family business.

    So in any Irwin docu he was the star not the creatures. At most they were his sparring partners.

    It was another version of man against the wilderness and encompassed a lot of that frontier ideology that Americans seem to embrace so keenly. It was a very individualist and self centred outlook that had no sense of a broad and campaign driven environmentalism that the world so urgently needs. He was never an advocate unless he was being paid to do so or it suited his business plan.

    dave riley

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