Brisbane; Worlds Ugliest City: a Philosopher’s View

A Philosopher

Last week a man whose name I shan’t even bother to mention flew in to Brisbane to promote a book the title of which has absolutely no relevance whatsoever.

The only important words in the above statement are ‘promote’ and ‘book’.

Next thing we know is that this man’s name is plastered all over our popular online press and he is being associated with saying that Brisbane is the ugliest city in the world.

Brisbane the ugliest city in the world? That really would be a crazy statement to make.

Fortunately we do not have to question his sanity because he didn’t actually make that statement from what I have seen. Here’s (some of) what he did say…

I would allege that certain vistas of Brisbane would qualify in a humanistic way as ugly.

Ooh, he speaks quite fancy for a Pom, don’t he? He also said…

First of all its central Brisbane, it’s, er, you know, on the waterfront and that part of Brisbane has been taken over by property developers who have been allowed to run riot for the sake of money.

Okay, let’s have a look at the waterfront in central Brisbane shall we?

South Bank Parklands

You can’t really get any closer to central Brisbane waterfront than South Bank Parklands. 17.5 hectares of grass, riverfront promenade, fountains, a lagoon, the rainforest and some golden sandy beach.

Free to get in.

Pictures describe it better than words…

South Bank Parklands

South Bank ParklandsDoesn’t much remind me of property developers being allowed to run riot.

How about this (waterfront/central) picture of Brisbane, does this particular vista qualify in a humanistic way as ugly?


I think not.

With that, I should rest my case. Instead though, I can show you more of beautiful Brisbane with this wonderful timelapse video…

This Is Brisbane 2014 (HD Timelapse) by Daduxio

Brisbane isn’t ugly at all; it’s modern, clean, and in the eye of this beholder, beautiful.

Why say Brisbane is ugly?

The clues were given earlier when I mentioned the words ‘promote’ and ‘book’ and the tactic seems to have worked well for him, although he’ll be getting no direct promotion here.

Anyway, turns out this man has studied philosophy…

Philosophythe rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge, or conduct.

So he is a philosopher…

Philosopher a person who offers views or theories on profound questions in ethics, metaphysics, logic, and other related fields.

It’s what he does for a living. He talks a lot about what “he” thinks.

Thanks Dictionary

Here’s the clever bit; the book he is promoting is about how we consume the news. So he creates the news by saying something ridiculous about Brisbane and then watches how we consume it.

We’ve all been tricked.

Blinking philosophers!

He reminds me of a song by The Fall, here’s the chorus:

He talks a lot of wind
He talks a lot of wind
He talks a lot of wind
He talks a lot of wind
He talks a lot about wind
He talks a lot about wind
It’s a lot of wind

… or something like that.

Good luck with the book mate, whatever it’s called.

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{ 7 comments… add one }
  • vhoy May 28, 2016, 8:57 pm |

    I’ve been to Singapore for 6 years, Melbourne for 2 years, visited Sydney, Canberra, and now living in Toowoomba. We visited Brisbane today and the place is a mess (if not ugly). Its like heaven and earth when you compared Brisbane to Singapore or Melbourne

    • BobinOz May 30, 2016, 3:26 pm |

      Are you the philosopher’s mother by any chance? 🙂

  • djmcbell April 1, 2014, 5:54 pm |

    I’ve never been to Brisbane (would like to one day) but the you’ve got here Bob definitely make it look nice.


    The author believes certain places are ugly. He hasn’t said “it’s the ugliest city in the world, for the love of God get me out of here”, he’s just said that certain bits of Brisbane, in his opinion, are ugly from “a humanistic point of view”.

    The waterfront area you’ve posted does indeed look very nice. Could the author mean around the streets in the area? Is there a lot of ugly property development taking place here? A quick look along Grey St on Google Streetview doesn’t seem to indicate this (one or two things being built, nothing out of the ordinary) – it all looks quite clean and nice.

    At the end of the day this guy hasn’t said “it’s the ugliest city in the world”, he’s just said that parts of it could qualify as ugly, from a certain point of view. The same would be true of anywhere.

    • BobinOz April 2, 2014, 12:10 am |

      It’s difficult to know for sure what the author truly meant, but I’ll have a stab at it. I think what he was trying to say was “I’ve got a new book out, please give me some free publicity now that I am in Brisbane to promote it.”

      I’m not sure if you are aware, but this guy posted a picture of ‘Brisbane’ on his blog to prove his point, except it was a picture of Ipswich.

      Oh dear.

      • djmcbell April 2, 2014, 5:23 pm |

        I can quite imagine Brisbane isn’t as bad as Ipswich!

        • BobinOz April 3, 2014, 12:30 am |

          Neither are bad, but you would have thought he could have at least put up a picture of the right place.

      • Bonny & Josey November 27, 2014, 7:49 am |

        Are there any Donkeys in Brisbane? well i wouldn’t mind if the place is a
        “Ses-pit” as long as there’s a Donkey or two with which to have a laugh & a snigger, then i’m sure that i’ll be as happy as Larry & i’ll love Brisbane to bits. Who gives a stuff about the Friggin buildings.Any how isn’t the essence of beauty in the
        eye of the beholder,isn’t that what the wise one’s tell us.
        Best wishes to all in Brisbane from Bonnie & Josey

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