Pranks, Hoaxes, Graffiti and Political Mischief-Making from across Australia
FIRST EDITION CURRENTLY OUT OF STOCK.
Also available in good bookstores nationally for the Recommended Retail Price of $29.95 (Aus) .
This collection reveals Australia’s radical past through tales of Indigenous resistance, convict revolts and escapes, picket line hi-jinks, student occupations, creative direct action, media pranks, urban interventions, squatting, blockades, banner drops, street theatre and billboard liberation; including stories and anecdotes, interviews with pranksters and troublemakers, and over 300 spectacular photos documenting the vital history of creative resistance in this country.
Written, compiled and researched by Iain McIntyre.
Book design and Photo Editing by Tom Sevil.
Additional research and editing by Lou Smith.
Foreword by Andrew Hansen from The Chaser.
How to Make Trouble and Influence People
Pranks, Hoaxes, Graffiti and Political Mischief-Making from Across Australia
Published by Breakdown Press, 2009
276 pages, 210mm x 206mm, 48 colour pages.
Printed in Australia on recycled paper using vegetable based inks.
For more information on the book:howtomaketroubleandinfluencepeople.org
Including 14 interviews with Australian Troublemakers: John Safran, Pauline Pantsdown, Dave Burgess, The Chaser, Buga-Up, Grevillea, Kevin Buzzacott, Meredith Burgmann, Deborah Kelly, Order of Perpetual Indulgence, Stuart Highway, John Howard Ladies’ Auxiliary Fan Club, No To Pope Coalition and The Graffiti Games Organising Committee.
What people have said about the book:
“If you’ve ever thought of speaking out about an issue or have idly wondered what you could do to make the world a better place, this is the book for you! Fascinating interviews, quirky historical snippets and stunning photos chronicling all the Australians who have made a difference¾and who have done so with courage, audacity and a lot of humour! Keep it on your desk at work for all those moments when you need some inspiration, a bit of hope or just a good laugh.”
Jill Sparrow (Co-author Radical Melbourne 1 & 2)
“A fascinating recovery of Australia’s neglected past and a worthy inspiration to today’s would-be troublemakers.”
Sean Scalmer (Author of The Little History of Australian Unionism and Dissent Events: Protest, The Media and the Political Gimmick in Australia)
Extracts from the book:
“Who’s to define what’s funny, what’s clever, what’s offensive? Politicians, talkback presenters and current affairs reporters seem to think the job’s up to them. But the truth is the job’s up to all of us.”
Andrew Hansen, The Chaser, from the Foreword.
“The APEC stunt was one of those days when you just get lucky. The odds of getting into the official APEC restricted zones were extremely slim, but we were all determined to give it a crack. The massive security measures had been a big news story, as well as a major inconvenience to Sydneysiders, so we thought it might be interesting to see how tight the security really was. We came up with a couple of ideas to try to gain access to the restricted areas: one was to “accidentally” drift into the restricted water zone on a pool pony; the other was to try to drive in by pretending to be one of the official motorcades attending the conference.”
Chris Taylor, from The Chaser interview
“The fantastic thing was that it actually stopped the game. I think we were the only people to stop the game. Africans listening to it in South Africa have told me since how exciting it was for them to listen to that happening on the radio. It was, in retrospect, a very proud moment. At the time I didn’t think of it as anything terribly huge, but I think in the scheme of things it was pretty important.”
Meredith Burgmann, reflecting on the anti-apartheid movement in the 1970s and the actions at the South African Springbok rugby team tour.
“Well, the people I knew generally used paint filled eggs. They were pretty good. You could get a pretty decent throw with those. Other people used balloons but they weren’t as easy… I heard of one guy who had adapted the back of a panel van so that he could open the back doors of the van and he had this catapult in the back and he could hit quite high billboards with this method. Mediaeval… and quite large paint bombs. I seem to remember that I have seen the results of his work and they were quite high and very effective. He was a very good aim.”
TOFU, from the BUGA-UP (Billboard Utilising Graffitists Against Unhealthy Promotions) interview
Iain McIntyre is a Melbourne-based writer and community radio broadcaster. In the late 1980s he was involved in anti-racist and environmental activism in Perth, Western Australia where he also co-edited his first publication Freakzine and presented a number of music shows for 6UVS/RTRfm.
In 1992 Iain moved to Melbourne where he continued his activism and began co-editing the Melbourne-based fanzine Woozy with Laura MacFarlane. Woozy ran for the best part of a decade and brought DIY currents around music, politics and comics together in the one publication. Twenty Two issues, involving over 100 contributors, were produced and more than 20 benefits and launches held. Woozy also spawned Choozy which distributed a number of zines and musical works in the late 1990s.
In 1996 Iain began contributing to, and later co-hosted, Community Radio 3CR’s Squatters and Unwaged Workers Airwaves (SUWA) show. 3CR published Wild About You: Tales From the Australian Rock Underground, 1963-68 in 2004, a book which was co-written with Ian Marks. In 2005 Iain produced the Australian Troublemakers’ Calendar as a benefit for the SUWA show. The following year the station financed a higher-end version and a collective was formed to produce and nationally distribute the Seeds of Dissent Calendar. The calendar has been designed by Tom Sevil from Breakdown for its five year existence and this is where Iain and Tom first began working together making publications about radical history. Iain continues to provide an Australian radical date for each day of the year and also produces occasional programmes focusing on music and radical history.
The first volume of How To Make Trouble and Influence People, which gave rise to three sequels and this book, came out in 1996 under the pseudonym of the Question Mark Collective. Since 2003 Iain has run Homebrew Press which has self-published three of his books (Revenge of the Troublemaker, Disturbing The Peace: Tales From Australia’s Rebel History and Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life: The AIDEX ’91 Story) and two of his pamphlets (Up Against The Wall Motherfucker! and Lock Out The Landlords: Anti-Eviction Resistance, 1929-36). In 2006 Wakefield Press published a collection Iain edited entitled Tomorrow Is Today: Australia In The Psychedelic Era, 1966-70.
Over the years Iain has also played in a number of bands, including Ninetynine, The Kleber Claux Memorial Singers and The Hatchets, and contributed to more than 40 publications. He continues to reside in Melbourne with his partner and child.
————————Reviews, Media & Excerpts about How to Make Trouble and Influence People
“An impassioned McIntyre gets down and dirty in an insiders account of activist pranks … McIntyre has amassed hundreds of tales alongside dramatic photographs in what is unashamedly a songbook for Australia’s future culture-jammers and mischief makers.”
Katherine Wilson, The Age.
“An absolutely fantastic book with a sensational cover image…”
Alan Brough, ABC 774 Melbourne interview
“A great chunk of our social history.”
Louise Maher, ABC 666 Canberra Drive
“An exquisite production with beautifully reproduced posters and photos … a compilation of stories and images from various troublemakers and ratbags throughout Australian history. Even if you’re a person who doesn’t like history per se I think you’ll find this book hard to resist.”
Jeff Sparrow (Overland editor), RRR Melbourne,
Aural Text interview
“Fantastic, fun, entertaining and very enlightening…”
Lou Swinn, RRR website review
“Fascinating interviews with Australia’s best troublemakers, including John Safran and The Chasers, and pics galore, make for a riotous scrapbook covering our radical history of revolts and resistance.”
Rachel Power, AEU (Australian Education Union) News AEU News summer reading article
“The perfect book for enlightened coffee tables.”
Rachel Evans, Green Left Weekly
“If you’ve ever thought of speaking out about an issue or have idly wondered what you could do to make the world a better place, this is the book for you! Fascinating interviews, quirky historical snippets and stunning photos chronicling all the Australians who have made a differenceand who have done so with courage, audacity and a lot of humour! Keep it on your desk at work for all those moments when you need some inspiration, a bit of hope or just a good laugh.”
Jill Sparrow, Co-author Radical Melbourne 1 & 2
“A fascinating recovery of Australia’s neglected past and a worthy inspiration to today’s would-be troublemakers.”
Sean Scalmer, Author of The Little History of Australian Unionism and Dissent Events: Protest,
The Media and the Political Gimmick in Australia)
Sydney Morning Herald – Dave Burgess Interview republished – 17/12/09
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Two Centuries of Troublemaking
Review by Rachel Evans
18 November 2009
From: Cultural Dissent, Green Left Weekly issue #818 18 November 2009.
Ever wondered what happened to billboard graffiti artists BUGA-UP? Want the low-down on the Chaser’s APEC stunt or an insight into Australia’s convict revolts? If so, How to Make Trouble and Influence People is the book for you.
In his perfect book for enlightened coffee tables, author Iain McIntyre reveals the vital history of creative resistance in Australia through tales of Indigenous resistance, convict escapes, picket-line hi-jinks, student occupations, creative direct action, media pranks, urban interventions, squatting, blockades, banner drops, street theatre and billboard liberation.
Included are stories and anecdotes, interviews with pranksters and troublemakers, and over 300 spectacular photos.
McIntyre is a Melbourne-based writer and community radio broadcaster. He began his ratbag ways in the late 1980s in anti-racist and environment movements.
McIntyre said: “The book brings to life knowledge that would otherwise be buried in the realms of academia and in the memories of those who lived this history.”
How to Make Trouble explores the political mischief-making of anti-apartheid campaigner Meredith Burgmann, John Safran, “No War” Opera House decorator Dave Burgess and political artist Deborah Kelly. McIntyre interviews The Chaser on its great APEC hoax and gleans wisdom from the women behind the John Howard Ladies’ Auxiliary Fan Club.
Howard’s Fan Club would race out to meet him in ’50s dress and appropriate signage. On their clothing was an explanation: “We were channelling the Queen. We thought that was appropriate as Howard had taken us back to 1952, or at least wanted to.”
The women launched a white blindfold campaign and “produced little origami white blindfolds which were handed out to passengers and said ‘Now this is the official John Howard view of history. What happens with the white blindfold is that you put it on and you can’t see a thing. It completely whites out everything. All you can see is white.’”
Kevin Buzzacott is an Arabunna Elder who played a key role in the campaign against the South Australian “Water Thieves” Olympic Dam mine. His humble interview about imaginative actions taken, from serving eviction notices on Western Mining Corporation through to engaging in thousand-mile long peace walks, is an inspiration.
Grevillea was a “creative inspiration group” that took action against torture in Chile. Alan Bond, who owned most of Perth when Grevillea was active, was supporting the Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet by buying into the Chilean telephone exchange.
At an art gallery opening that included a Bond-owned Van Gogh painting, a Grevillean activist got up with a megaphone in front of champagne sipping well-to-dos and said: “Ladies and gentlemen…While you are sipping on your chardonnays, I hope you are happy with the idea that the money that is funding this event is coming from the torture of dissidents in Chile.”
She was escorted out, but the point was made.
McIntyre interviews the Graffiti Games Organising Committee; Stuart Highway, leader of the Network Against Prohibition, campaigning against the “war on drugs”; the gay male order of nuns – the Order of Perpetual Indulgence; and NoToPope Coalition activists.
Interspersed between interviews and vivid photos of inventive actions are brief notes of historical resistance. For example — in Adelaide in 1970, an annual Miss Fresher beauty contest at Adelaide university was shut down when 60 feminists and their male supporters occupied the catwalk.
In Sydney in 1798, an Irish convict was given 100 lashes at Toongabbie for throwing down his hoe and giving three cheers for liberty.
In Melbourne in 1992, racist “Asians Out” graffiti was revised to read: “Take Asians Out to Dinner — No Borders” and “Asians Shout Death to Racists”.
How to Make Trouble is full of ideas for future actions against bigotry and injustice. As McIntyre said: “History is filled with individuals and organisations who were totally out of step with the mainstream of their time… In learning about the deeds of rebels past, we are provided with a memory bank of ideas and tactics from which to draw.”
[The Sydney launch of How To Make Trouble is on December 5 at The Red Rattler Theatre, 6 Faversham Street, Marrickville, 8pm-midnight. Iain McIntyre and Dave “No War” Burgess will be there with music by Lee Memorial, The Kleber Claux Memorial Singers and NinetyNine.]