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What a “couldn’t care less” lot we are

What a laconic couldn’t care less lot we are. Even when we get agitated over something we rarely make a ripple on Bondi beach.

The last time I can remember us getting a wee bit pissed about a something of importance was the marriage equality debate when we told the politicians enough unfairness was enough and to just get on with it. Then Turnbull claimed the credit.

It is true, I think, that we have a morbid distrust of seriousness and we are less enamoured by a sense of occasion than others. Although Anzac Day and sport may be the exceptions that generally raise our collective nationalism, but otherwise we remain indifferent in the face of things worthy of protest.

So forgiving of bad governance have we become that we have twice voted back in the governments that have been spectacularly unscrupulous without the blink of an eye. On current reckoning we will even allow them to wreck the planet without the slightest resistance.

Our national character is of loudness, speaking our minds when the situation demands it, so long as it doesn’t interrupt something more important.

Understanding the sovereignty of our Indigenous folk has been a thought for most, too difficult.

We still cling to the monarchy with childlike fascination and a republic is a threat to the celebrity of it.

Domestic violence is a crying shame but like many other things we sit quietly and say little. The same can be said of our underlying racism.

Suicide, the scale of it, explains the utter hopelessness we have created with our vision of what life and society is.

Men, those younger than I, seem to be narcissistic unfeeling creatures who derive pleasure from what life can give them rather than what virtues their maleness can give the world.

The rise of narcissism and inequality and the demise of compassion illustrate the state of the world.

Rightly or wrongly religion is dying. We are replacing it with the worship of celebrity. The young, in particular, adore people of the most mediocre endowment as if they were gods to be deified. Royalty, sports and television stars fill this category.

Our politics is confrontational, even ugly, and in the last 20 years or so has done its best to uphold our larrikin anti-authoritarian nature.

We exercise our involvement in our democracy every three years by voting. After that the vast majority takes very little interest. Why is it so?

In trying to describe what ‘Australian culture’ is we are confronted with the contradiction of an incredible culturally diverse nation. Our immigrants come from all over the world with one in four Australian residents being born outside of Australia.

Few understand the rich cultural diversity immigration has given us because politicians of the ilk of Tony Abbott have taught them the political value of hatred.

We have not yet grown into, or obtained the truth, that people are just trying to find a place in the world where they can be secure and loved. Our reputation around the world, perpetuated by the likes of Peter Dutton on immigration, is pitiful.

I guess that what I am trying to say here is that Government is responsible for all the laws made at a national level, state government at a state level and local councils at a community level. That’s three levels of government for 25 million people.

As a result of the political malaise we find ourselves in the government has been unable to govern to a standard befitting the needs of this nation. Its first problem is it’s standard of leadership. The second its quality of representation where one wonders how many MPs got past pre-selection n the first place. The third, of course, is that economic decisions have human consequences. That economics and society are  interwoven.

Character is a combination of traits that etch the outlines of a life, governing moral choices and infusing personal and professional conduct. It’s an elusive thing, easily cloaked or submerged by the theatrics of politics. But unexpected moments can sometimes reveal the fibres from which it is woven.

Examples of the government’s inability to govern arise every day. Last week we had an almost total breakdown in diplomacy with China.

China is an emerging power while the US under President Trump is vacating its once held position as leader of the free world.

China is speaking to the world in its own language and we are failing to comprehend.

We should remember that China, in rescuing millions of its people from poverty in 30 years or so has performed a miracle of sorts. To my knowledge it has never started a war but is now saying that it won’t be pushed around by the likes of Trump and Morrison.

Our government, instead of using words of understanding to China, seems intent on climbing aboard Trump’s hateful bandwagon. The leader of China is at least sane whereas the leader of the USA should be encouraged to get in as much golf as possible.

This is not to say that they are right in their actions. They are not. We are in a new phase of our relationship with China.

It says that it is incumbent on us to choose our words more carefully or pay the consequences.

The more we say the less the better about Chinese diplomacy.

After 19 attempts to arrive at an energy policy our government has reverted to old technologies to resolve this issue.

Even in the face of calamity it cannot bring itself to admit it was and is still wrong on climate change. Christiana Figueres – considered the world’s top climate change negotiator – commented that:

“I am deeply pained by the attitude of the current Australian government: that still after the worst disaster that has ever hit the planet, the bushfires in Australia, that this government is still denying climate change and denying the fact that there is a lot that Australia can and should be doing.”

Another display of incompetence occurred last week and remains a bone of contention: How on earth was the error of Job Keeper/Seeker not picked up earlier? It seems incomprehensible and a better explanation is required.

We now end up with the following:

  • On Job-Keeper the PM announced a spend of $138 but is actually spending $70b.
  • On the drought fund the PM announced $7b but is spending $2b. On the Bush Fire fund it is $2b with the actual at $250 mil.

The government has become accustomed to making announcements without putting in the hard yards of meticulous planning. I expected Morrison’s speech on Tuesday May 26 to be much the same – and I was correct – but I hope he is successful for the sake of the common good of the nation. Having said that, I wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him.

My thought for the day

People need to wake up to the fact that government affects every part of their life and should be more interested. But there is a political malaise that is deep seated.

 

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33 comments

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  1. Geoff Andrews

    As the poit sez, (in describing us little battlers):

    “And they all grew idle and fond of ease,
    And easy to swindle and hard to please.”

  2. Kathryn

    Well said, John Lord! The rising level of political apathy, right-wing conservatism and self-indulgent, self-serving complacency in this country, is absolutely appalling – especially when one remembers the politically active, societal awarness during the late 1960’s and 1970’s. When good men and women do nothing, great evil prospers and this is WHY we have the loathsome, totally corrupt, self-absorbed pack of callously inhumane sociopaths running our nation right now tearing down our democracy, vandalising our environment and selling off everything we hold dear!

  3. wam

    What a giggle this morning lord,
    Only 38% of us voted no.
    Yes The ACT lowest ‘NO’ 26%’with NSW lowest YES.57%
    ABS:
    12,727,920 (79.5%) eligible Australians participated in the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey.
    Those aged 70 to 74 were the most likely to respond to the survey, with 89.6% of eligible Australians in this age group participating. The participation rate was lowest in those aged 25 to 29 at 71.9%. The youngest age group of eligible Australians (those aged 18-19 years) were more likely (78.2%) to participate than any other age group under the age of 45 years.

    “We will even allow them to wreck the planet without the slightest resistance.”
    That is a bit harsh, the loonies apologised last year for that 2009 vote.
    (Still waiting on their 2013 and boobby’s hidden agenda 2019 caravan confession but).

    Spot on about excessively governed how wasteful are we to have 9 active???ministers for education and dozens of retired education ministers drawing huge pensions???

    Even the coppers when pressed will agree that smirko is not to be trusted but trust labor less and are disgusted by the loonies.
    Weirdly, they are unknowing supporters of multiculturalism because the police culture is so weakly rigid they think the europeans have assimilated. The chinese can’t because they still look different. and there are few in the force certainly none visible.

  4. Jack Cade

    Trump got 46% of the votes cast in 2016, on a voter turnout of 61%. So he was the deliberate choice of on 28% of the electorate. So 72% of US voters can say ‘We didn’t vote for him.
    (Clinton got 48%, but well, that’s democracy, isn’t it?)
    The Conservatives got 43.5% of the votes in the UK in 2029, on a voter turnout of 67%.
    So they govern at the will of only 29% of the electorate. So 71% of UK voters can say ‘We didn’t vote for Johnson.
    Bolsonaro became president of Brazil on 55% of a voter turnout of 80%, which means he was the choice of 44% of the electorate; the other 56% can deny that he was their choice.
    The L-NP won government in Australia with 51% of the vote in a country where voting is compulsory.
    Australia has no excuse whatsoever. It knew what it was getting so we assume it’s what we wanted.
    The other examples of buffoons being elected – one at least of which could be reasonably described as a malignant man – are the result of apathy.
    Australia’s government was deliberately elected by most voting Australians.

  5. Baby Jewels

    One in four of us were born in another country. I find it deeply disappointing that so many of these immigrants are embracing the racism, the inequality and demise of compassion that they themselves ran from. My own ex in laws, one from a war torn nation, the other an economic refugee, now vote Pauline Hanson. I would like to know how this came about because I don’t understand it. Well done, John, you hit the nail on the head with so much of your article.

  6. Baby Jewels

    I’ve always wondered why talking about politics was taboo. It’s important! I grew up in a world where I never heard politics spoken of. It was “unseemly” to discuss politics. So I knew nothing about it really. It was only when, in the early 2000s, in a state of apathy and ignorance, I voted for Pauline Hanson and someone pointed out a few facts to me. I’ll be eternally thankful to that person because it started my interest in politics and every day I learn more, and form a stronger picture of what it is, that I want for my family and my country. So, my thoughts are, we should discuss politics more. This could result in arguments and broken friendships even, but it is worth it because such an important subject should not be taboo!

  7. Ellen Smith

    I am from Northern Ireland, grew up in a household where the Queen, Ian Paisley and Maggie Thatcher were gods. Labour Party were likened to communists. Once, I was about 16, I made a comment that “Clem Jones had done a lot for Brisbane”my father yelled at me saying something about how bad Labour was. Since then I developed an interest in politics probably bordering on morbidity. I lived through the Joh years arguing with my father about his corrupt ness (or not in Dad’s view) When Peter Beattie won an election my mum whispered to me that she voted for him because she really liked him and couldn’t stand the Opposition leader at the time. Thankfully my dad mellowed in later years and praised Clem Jones for his work, although he hated Jim Soorley and loved Sallyanne! He also liked Annastacia and Tanya Plibersek, but still wouldn’t stray from the Liberal path. I thank Dad now because he unwittingly caused me to become a political animal! Living in the safest National Party seats in the country doesn’t do much for me tho🥴

  8. Old bloke

    Jack, a very interesting take on voting intentions. Well done. I lived and worked in China for about 8 years and got to know the Chinese pretty well. Recently in the Sydney Morning Herald a letter writer referred to the ‘abject poverty’ and ‘disgraceful education’ of the Chinese. So how did he ‘know’ this? I saw no abject poverty, but some poor people compared to others, but still well fed. The correspondent clearly knows nothing of the ‘iron rice bowl’ where no Chinese would starve these days. I did some corporate training of professionals and in one American company (joint venture), the receptionist on the front desk had a masters degree in engineering. I was at one stage the principal of a college which prepared Chinese students for undergraduate and post graduate studies in UK and Australian universities. The Gao Kao, equivalent to our Year 12 finals exam is perhaps the most important thing in a Chinese teenagers (and parents) lives. During the Gao Kao exam week, streets around the schools are closed to traffic so there can be no disturbance during the exams. So for disgraceful education.

    Now, about the ‘brain washed’ Chinese population: yes there is some, just as there is in Oz. However most educated Chinese I knew actually had contempt for the Communist Party, but didn’t much care about politics as long as they had a good life, must as it is in Oz. My reasonably educated sister although a Labor voter is an admirer of Pauline Hanson and when I scoff at this she says that Pauline is only saying what so many are thinking. Thinking? If morons think, well yes, thinking. You know, as the Romans reckoned….give them bread and circuses and all will be peaceful and I reckon that is true anywhere.

    Sorry that this might have been be a bit off topic, but my intention is to highlight the lack of knowledge and carelessness of our voting populations.

  9. Gangey1959

    When mafs and love island and “real” housewives of whogivesaratsarse are the mainstay of our entertainment, and nicola gobbo and the afp raids have proven how low our legal/justice system has sunk, what can we expect from our gen y’s and later.
    I even get “Boomer” from some of them, just for having an opinion.
    Has china started a war? Well no, they haven’t invaded “Poland” as such, but ask the Uighurs what is going on. And their actions in the South china Sea? That’s War! Just no bullets. Yet.
    Australia feels like a rudderless ship in a storm at the moment. We have so much potential, but noone at the wheel, and all of the crew fighting over the map and compass.
    And the rocks are getting closer and closer.

  10. Old bloke

    Baby Jewels: as I learned as a kid, do not talk about politics or religion at the dinner table. I suspect that was to keep the peace.

  11. New England Cocky

    @Ellen Smith: I can sympathise with your position as I live in New England where the Nazional$ are represented by Barnyard Joke, the amoral, alcoholic, adulterous, bigoted, misogynist who allegedly upholds all the “family values” of the Nazional$ by spawning two bastards with his Press Officer.

    The difficulty here is that the locals think that “the reds are under the beds” (as told by Menzies in the 1950s), that David Drummond is a wonderful Federal MP (he retired in 1961 and was replaced by Ian “Sinkers” Sinclair until 1997, then by Stuart St Clair, Tony Windsor and now the Joke) and that COALition misgovernments are looking after the best interests of the electorate by spending $100 MILLION on renovating Redfern Railway Station Sydney, while ignoring the renovation and re-opening to freight and passenger services of the Great Northern Railway between Armidale and Wallangarra at a cost estimated as about $44 MILLION.

  12. Jack Cade

    Old Bloke

    Re: China. I spent 8 weeks in China two years ago, mixing with Chinese people and met absolutely no other foreigners. I was in Nanjing most of the time.
    I saw no poverty. I saw poor people, but no beggars, no people sleeping in the streets.
    One late evening I was walking home through some very rundown streets. This was 1am. Three men were walking toward us. I said to my companion ‘Get ready to run!’ She said ‘You are not serious! You do not understand at all, do you? You are absolutely safe! They would not DARE to attack us, even if they were inclined to.’
    Correct! All we got was a cheery greeting and a wish good night!
    I would not walk around Adelaide’s CBD at 1 am. No way!
    I have no desire to live in China. But I would choose it all day long rather than the USA, which is a dysfunctional nation. Someone once quipped that the USA went from the primitive to the decadent without ever being civilised.
    I am only mildly interested in the HongKong conundrum. But HK is part of China, and will be fully in 25 years or so. We get little or no news about the convulsions going on in France with the Gilet Jaunes rioting and seeking major change. We care little about the Basques rioting, wanting to exit Spain. If Hawaii wanted to leave the USA there would be carnage, beyond any question.

  13. Paul Falconer

    I’m always a tad perplexed when it comes to looking the other way with China.

    For exmple – China never having started a war. Look at the history of Imperial China – say 200BC to the twentieth century. All internal you may say. So what? A war is a war. Then there’s Tibet, Korea and even Vietnam.

    China is an autocratic, totalitarian dictatorship. It’s citizens are surveilled, and if they step out of line, they are jailed (at best).

    Tianamen Square – how soon we forget.

    They meddle in our affairs at every level – they see us as a future vassal state. Their bully tactics become more blatant – toe the line or pay the consequences.

    Their investements in other countries are thinly disguised attempts to, at best influence, at worst blackmail them into subservience.

    Everything about the Chinese regime screams “Beware”. They are everything progressives should abhor. I cannot understand how many folk of a progressive bent are prepared to forgive its many, dangerous shortcomings. The dissidents in Hong Kong are not fooled.

    The US has its (many) faults – Trump being a manifestation of the worst of the country but they can vote the bloated criminal out and lock him away.

  14. Old bloke

    Jack, I worked mostly in Shanghai with an official population of about 18 million then. Also worked in Chongqing, Chengdu and Wuhan with short stays in Suzhou. A highlight was in a town called Naiman in Inner Mongolia where I introduced the IELTS English language exam system. Second language there was Russian. It turned out that I was the first foreigner (apart from the Japanese) they had seen. They were dirt poor, but generous to a fault. No matter where I was in China I never, repeat never felt unsafe. I would not however go into Hunter Street here in Newcastle late at night. Having a white face classified me as an American to the Chinese. My little bloke when hearing the locals talking about me would stamp his foot and forcefully say ‘wode baba bu shi meiguo ren, ta shi aodalia ren!’ ‘My father is not an American, he is an Australian!’

  15. Zathras

    After decades of global humiliation, grinding poverty and being literally forced to trade with the West at gunpoint, China managed to replace one repressive regime with another but became a superpower in about 50 years and lifted most of it’s population out of poverty.

    They now have been given a choice between wealth and freedom but cannot have both.
    Now the average bank balance per person in China holds $363 while in the USA it is minus $2,490.

    As for Tibet, most people are unaware that pre-China, Tibet did not have a single school, hospital or paved road in the entire country, it’s rural population lived in a form of owned serfdom and their former leaders fled the country taking almost all the wealth with them.

    Everybody seems to forget that Communist regimes come about via popular revolutions once conditions become so intolerable for their citizens they are left with no real alternative. The further the pendulum is dragged to the right, the harder it will swing back the other way.

  16. Jack Cade

    Paul Falconer

    Everything you say you abhor about China can be said about the USA. You cite three countries they treated badly, two of which were almost bombed out of existence by the USA, not to mention the 1 million land mines they dropped into adjacent Laos and Cambodia, with which they were not at war.
    The world was appalled – and rightly so – at ‘9/11’ (executed by citizens of a US ally – by the way), but the USA has visited countless 9/11s on many countries. They have interfered in the electoral processes in 80 countries including Australia, and are doing so now – almost certainly in HongKong, and only last week they attempted to kidnap the prime minister of Venezuela in yet another attempted coup, to get their oil. Don’t give me the shite about America being a beacon of democracy. It’s only motivated by other countries’ resources. They provoked a coup in Iran to get their oil, they destroyed Iraq to get their oil, they destroyed Libya to get their oil…
    Suggesting Australia will be seen as a ‘vassal state’ of China is risible – we are already seen as a vassal of the USA, indeed we are the ultimate vassal State, actually begging to be invited to join in its filthy wars as we do.
    And you can bet your balls the barley China stops buying from us will be offered by the USA.

  17. Paul Falconer

    Jack,

    You will note i stated that the US has many faults. Particularly under IQ45.

    My point is that I am perplexed why progressives apologise for a regime that is against everything a progressive stands for.

    Go to China and start a demo against the government. You will go to jail.
    Go to the USA and start a demo against the government. Some MAGA might wave a gun in your face. Maybe.

    BTW, I’m not saying we’ll be seen as a vassal state – they are contriving means to turn us into one.

    The Chinese regime is not our friend.

  18. Jack Cade

    Paul

    I am not advocating China – I wouldn’t last a week there because I could not resist commenting on authority. But the USA is as close to civil war now as it has ever been, whereas China seemed to me to be a nation totally at ease with itself.
    If a MAGA were confronted by someone suggesting the USA was not the greatest society the world had ever seen, and he discharged his automatic weapon, he would very likely not ever be convicted. The US police forces are not trained -Hollywood lies about their competence and their motives – a black man has zero chance of justice in the USA.
    In the old John Wayne movies the 7th Cavalry came over the hill and rescued the oppressed. The REAL 7th Cavalry was the dregs of society.
    There are possibly more genuine poor in the USA than in China.
    Australia should have followed the NZ example and showed some self-respect instead of turning ANZUS into ANUS

  19. Andrew Smith

    One of the most important issues in Australia nowadays, amongst related, is that an informed electorate is needed but precluded by our now narrow, shallow and consolidated media based mostly on PR, bypassing grounded electoral democracy. This same media transmits US/UK right wing libertarian political ideology (channeled by the IPA) and WASP (expanded to include Irish Catholic, Jewish and European) culture while even ignoring NZ, Canada and Ireland for influence.

    Maybe the saving grace, watching the angst that Victoria creates for the LNP is changing more diverse demographics across the nation that will follow the oldies and baby boomer (demographic bubble) generation dominated by WASP culture whom still dominate; weaponised by John Howard.

    The issue will be, has the US radical right libertarian culture promoted through our politicised media and culture of past decades been successful in making itself permanent by not just embedding what people think but changing how they think (key strategy according to Jane Mayer of Dark Money re. Kochs etc. fame; same channeled by IPA and NewsCorp).

  20. Old bloke

    Jack, Paul, in support of what you are both saying: as the DOS (Director of Studies) of an Australian joint venture education company in Shanghai, I had employed a young pommie graduate and gave him a set of written instructions in what to avoid in dealing with Chinese students. For example, leave the girls alone (had to sack one yank for this in another company). Also, do not talk about religion or politics. So, off he goes to a university and sets about criticising the Chinese for their policy towards Xijiang (Muslems) and about how useless the Chinese were. A month or so later I get a call from the communist party secretary for the university. It was quite succinct….the pommie is to be out of China tomorrow. The point is this, you have come to China and are allowed to work there by their grace. It is their country. You might not agree with them, but they have their laws. I had to deal with Farlungong member of staff, but she was Chinese. We had a group of academically highly qualified American Mormons who were inviting students to their flats to preach, absolutely against the law in China. Many of the expats I worked with had and showed contempt towards China and the people. Jesus Christ I had my hands full. Had to turn a blind eye to Chinese managers with hands in the till. But with a lot of trick cycling I managed to not only survive, but to be successful. That success came from respect for the country and its people and they have as many dills as we do pro rata. But I knew and worked with some really fine people too. And the older professors still were afraid to show their feelings about one of the 3 monsters of the 20th century (as one of them described Mao Zedong to me).

    As I read the blogs in the papers I see a lot of uninformed tripe from people who base their views on simplistic propaganda they read in our pathetic MSM. And some of the views are simply racist. China bashing is the new sport…for a while anyway. My wife is afraid to go to Sydney to visit our son who is at university on a train, because she is Chinese and would wear a face mask for health reasons. She is afraid of the racist Australians who have been ‘given permission’ by the media and politicians to display their racism.

    Sorry if I sound angry. And Zathras is right about Tibet. The common people of Tibet were liberated by the Chinese but refused to modernise. Not saying the Chinese were always correct in their behaviour though.

  21. Andrew Smith

    Old Bloke, I concur, done similar elsewhere. Issue for Australians has been like many British too, influenced by US in preaching exceptionalism and boasting while (indirectly) denigrating others (part of the conservative agitprop).

    Too many Australians have a well earned reputation in being conservative, shallow and racist or prone to stereotyping (often through laziness). I advise many off travelling to not hang out with Australians all the time, do not talk about Oz (AFL, property prices, immigrants, Anzackery and money) and avoid talking about (or up) themselves.

    Australia used to have a cool brand for younger generations but that changed from about the time of Howard, when Australia changed….

  22. Old bloke

    Andrew, I’ve oft said that John Howard was Australia’s most successful prime minister in that he made the country into a facsimile of himself: mean, uncaring, racist, dishonest and shallow. You have only got to see what passes for TV entertainment now in Oz to see how shallow were have become.

  23. Jack Cade

    Old Bloke

    John Howard visited a newly-built school in the suburb in which I lived in Adelaide, and my late wife was teaching there. He visited her class and he shook her hand. It provoked the only harsh words she and I ever exchanged in our 20 years of marriage. She was a sweet, lovely girl and would not have been rude enough to refuse to shake his hand (he was Frasers treasurer then, I think.) She said to me ‘You would have shaken his hand!’ to which I said ‘If I wanted to dip my hand in shit I’d have become a plumber.’
    She thought that was awful…
    That was nearly 50 years ago. I loathed him then and I loathe him now, and all he stood for.

  24. Zathras

    Jack,

    Unlike many self-professed “experts” on those heady days I also lived through that era and have noticed that despite being much older and less passionate about some things, “maintaining the rage” is getting easier for me with every successive Cancervative PM that crawls up from around the S-Bend of politics.

    When Fraser started to sound like the sole voice of reason and compassion that said a lot about his successors.

    Howard’s legacy has also been a resurgence and self-validation of the extreme right that has stained and corrupted us as a nation.

  25. Ray Tinkler

    Could it be that the heat of the Sun on the heads of the descendants of the 1st fleet’s masters, unsuited as they were to the change of climes, are now being affected by the increasing average temperatures of climate change and like the ice at the world’s poles, their brains are melting too, causing this strange malady.

  26. Sammy

    The time of the west is coming to an end. China will rise and surpass America as the dominant power in the world. Australia is in a very difficult position but we don’t seem to behave like we are. We are racist, arrogant, and pig-headed and our leaders act like we are a huge nation with great power when really we are literally like “the gum stuck on somebody’s shoe”.

    We need to wake up and realise that like it or not the only reason we have such success and influence is because of the US. And that the US is on the way out. We can either follow them down the plughole or start to take a more neutral position in regards to China. Our ‘Leaders’ know this but are too stupid and short-sighted as well as lacking the leadership skills to actually achieve this.

    We have two huge challenges to face in the first half of this century. 1) Maintaining a similar quality of life in this country during the rise of China. 2) Surviving climate change, especially considering we are likely to be in one of the worst affected areas and are already suffering mild consequences.

    Sadly, the behavior of so many during the coronavirus pandemic has demonstrated that we are incapable of successfully navigating either of the above points. One need only look at the media and political blitz on the Queensland government regarding borders at the moment. Why Queensland? Its a Labor state and there’s an election later in the year.

    The so-called Snap Back is more about a snap back to the reality of the Neoliberal norms than the economy and it is plain to see many employers and business groups ready to take advantage of the people at the first opportunity.

    There is nothing special about us Australians. We are Caucasian and have a few minerals and stick to the US like glue and that is the only difference between us and most of the Pacific nations, several of which are much larger than us.

  27. Old bloke

    Sammy: ‘We are Caucasian’. I wonder what the original Australians, or those from other racial groups who are naturalised citizens would think of that? To my mind they are all Australians and as citizens have the same rights and responsibilities as Caucasians born here. I was born here and am from Celtic stock. Where does that leave me? I’m sure you did not mean it, but it does sound a bit like ‘terra nullius’ or as Tony Abbott said once (or words to the effect) ‘there was nothing here until white man came’.

    I think I should bugger off now.

  28. Sammy

    Old Bloke: Good point. That was not my intention. What i was trying to say was a large proportion of our population are from a similar ethnic background as the US, UK, etc in comparison to say Indonesia and in the context of trying to say there is nothing special about our ethnic background. I could have worded that better.

    Lol, you know you have stuffed up when somebody compares you to Tony Abbott 🙂

  29. Jack Cade

    Off on a tangent, I know, but I was heartened to hear that WE will be able to find out what ‘sejonka’ told Betty Battenberg about Gough’s desire to wrest Australia’s self-respect from her and others.
    I’d also like (fat chance, I know) to see the correspondence between ASIO, MI6, and the CIA about Australia’s attempt to escape the Stockholm Syndrome.

  30. Ray Tinkler

    Well, Sammy (and Old bloke), when we have a govt that is constantly referring to “Australian values” as what should guide us (and be written into law if they have their way) from what background are they speaking and from what racial base do they draw those “values”. I put it to you it is not from any other but Caucasian. Even then the emphasis is only from one sector of that.

  31. Old bloke

    Ray Tinkler: Hear hear! And they know that that ‘Caucasian’ (Anglo) sentiment must remain hidden, because you know, people might think it racist in nature, but nevertheless press on.

    And Sammy: good reply, thank you. Anyway we don’t get many of the fascist nature reading and responding to this medium. When I tell my young bloke (half Chinese, half Aussie…has his mother’s good looks and brains) that aborigines were classified as part of Australia’s fauna, he has that incredulous look on his face.

  32. Jack Cade

    Old Bloke

    Why would your son think it odd that Indigenes were classed as fauna? After all, it cannot have escaped his notice that Australia is governed by reptiles…

  33. Old bloke

    Indeed Jack. The young man has his brain and heart in the right place. He shows a healthy contempt for the Liberal Party and hangers-on. He is studying at uni to become a clinical psychologist and hopes to help others. I think given what is happening in Oz he is going to have plenty of patients.

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