Critical Comment

28. Jul, 2022

I usually avoid discussing matters relating to the daily grind but, in these grainy days of growing inflation and the lack of readies, I intend to address an important bread and butter issue.

With all due apologies to Karl Marx: there is a spectre haunting our café culture – that spectre is the Unbuttered Sanga. 

It has been an unalterable law, a Hegelian dialectic of history, built upon centuries of syllogistic reasoning, that the thesis and antithesis of two pieces of bread, plus butter, creates the synthesis long-known as the ‘basic Sanga’ [some cultures with less advanced consciousness know this as a sandwich].

To discourse briefly on the ‘essence’ of the basic Sanga, following Marxist dogma, any ‘filling’ inserted into the Sanga can only be considered to be analogous to bourgeois superstructure per se. The filling does not change the intrinsic essence of the Sanga. It merely adds to its nomenclature, for the sake of example, a ‘cheese’ Sanga or a ‘tomato’ Sanga.   

Let us now turn to the aforementioned spectre: There exists a creeping postmodernist revisionism tendency whose aim is to reduce this dialectic to a pre-Socratic form of utter simplicity, namely, the unbuttered Sanga. This oxymoron totally encapsulates the simple-mindedness of Wokist Class. Furthermore, the bourgeois-faddists flogging these dodgy Sangas provide a classic woke justification for their penny pinching, dialectic destroying and indigestible offerings: Most people today are mindful of their wellness and choose not to have fatty animal extracts in their Sangas.   

Apart from the obvious riposte that a Sanga without butter is not a Sanga, I have a most decidedly un-woke answer to this ambiguation – Bollocks.

If a snivelling, mung-bean-munching, soy latte dribbling toss-pot wants his Sanga emasculated, then let him plead his case over the counter. There is no excuse that his ‘mindful-wellness’ should have any bearing whatsoever on the actual reality and pure essence of a Sanga.

There exists of course a far more subtle factor behind this revisionism – the ugly face of Capitalism. The petty-bourgeois cohort of our population attracted to running cafes, ever ‘mindful’ of their own economic ‘wellness’, have alighted upon a splendidly woke justification to embark on cost-cutting at the consumer’s expense.    

The question is, are we red-blooded and traditional Sanga aficionados, going to accept these penny pinching bourgeois diktats of commerce, or the faddish diktats of our intellectually and spiritually ambiguated brethren who wouldn’t know the difference between a black-pudding and horse road apples?  

How do I deal with this crisis when I find it? Decisively! I open the offending offering, fully exposing it in all its pathetic and unbuttered nakedness. I then photograph same with my cell phone and, having thus done, call the waitress or waiter over – or return same to counter myself as appropriate – and I begin to declaim loudly and at length on the intrinsic essence of a thoroughbred Sanga. I gesticulate with my phone and photo and mutter imprecations about consumer affairs. I have this art perfected to such a degree that I have ceased to embarrass my wife. Indeed, in an endeavour to pre-empt a scene, she hastens to order first, emphasising, to the point of pleading, for the bread to be buttered. Although her entreaties are effective they have deprived me of a lot of fun.

But, to conclude on a serious note – As our Brother in Discontent might well have said: Sanga eaters disdain to conceal their views and aims. Let the Wokist Culinary Classes tremble at the Sanga counter-revolution. Sanga lovers have nothing to lose but their appetite. They have a sandwich to win.

 

4. Jul, 2022

My attention was caught over the weekend by one of many stories of various aspects of discrimination against Christians around the world, but this one from the home Anglicanism, really stretched my ill-humour. Some of my British readers might well be acquainted with the story, but I consider it worth retelling.

The story is about the Rev. Bernard Randall, a school chaplain [2015 - 2020] fired from his job at Trent College, a Church of England School in Nottingham: His crime? To deliver a sermon in which he told pupils that they did not need to accept LGBT ideology if they felt it went against their beliefs or the beliefs of the Church.

Rev. Randall attended the recent International Religious Freedom Summit, a panel on “polite persecution” — a phrase coined by Pope Francis — assembled by The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington

During the course of the summit Randall described how secular abortion and gender activists are gutting cherished freedoms in countries that have historically championed religious liberty. Often, he observed that this religious persecution is state-sanctioned.

I picked this story up in the Christian Post of last Friday, 1 July 2022. I shall let Brandon Showalter, Senior Investigative Reporter with the Post, tell his own story:

From the Post 

 In his remarks, the Rev. Bernard Randall recounted how just over three years ago, he, as an ordained chaplain, was reported to authorities and investigated as part of a government anti-terrorism probe for espousing Christian sexual ethics during a chapel service in a Church of England school. 

The school had invited LGBT activist Elly Barnes, founder of Educate & Celebrate, an LGBT education charity, to a staff training session to introduce a new curriculum under the guise of anti-bullying education, he said, noting that no one objects to protecting students from bullying. Yet, he soon found out that there were aspects of this training that were not about bullying but the indoctrination of LGBT ideology. It went so far that at one point the trainers had the staff chanting about the need to “smash heteronormativity.”

“That’s something well beyond not bullying people,” Randall said. 

The LGBT group further taught staff that there are nine characteristics that are protected under British law, among them “gender” and “gender identity.” But that is not true, Randall stressed, noting that the trans movement has coerced the public into believing such claims.

Since the aim of the Educate & Celebrate curriculum material is to “embed gender, gender identity and sexual orientation into the fabric of your organization,” students asked Randall to address the issue at a chapel service. 

After doing so, he was summarily dismissed from school for gross misconduct and reported to the counter-terrorism program after he told students, aged 11 to 17, that they were not compelled to “accept an ideology they disagree with.” He also told the students that they could make up their own minds about gender identity and sexuality.

Randall added that students could either choose to adopt the thinking of LGBT activists or adhere to Christian sexual ethics — that marriage is only between a man and woman and that sex is confined to that context. Most importantly, he advised students to show respect for those who disagree.

“I was summoned into what I can only describe as an interrogation by the senior leadership," he said. "I was suspended. And I was fired for gross misconduct for doing my job as per the job description."

Randall was also reported to Child Protective Services and a British government anti-terrorism program as a potential violent extremist. 

“I’d like to think that I’m a reasonably moderate sort of chap,” he said, reiterating how he left the question of believing the claims of LGBT activists open-ended in his chapel remarks. 

But his firing and being reported to the government anti-terrorism task force was a revealing moment showing how far the school's administration had gone to the other extreme. 

He is now suing the school for religious discrimination but noted how astonishing it is that he has to take legal action against a Church of England institution, for proclaiming Christian beliefs in a sermon during a chapel service. The Christian Legal Centre has since been representing him.

Speaking of the relevance of the international religious freedom summit, the Anglican chaplain stressed that freedom of religion includes freedom from religion. The Marxist progressive ideology at work functions much like a religion and people should be free from that if they wish to be. 

“If Western countries cannot protect their own religious groups from discrimination there is absolutely no reason that the other countries at which we might point the finger” who are violating religious freedom, and they can say to the West and say, “You’re not taking it seriously, so why should we?” he said.

When asked by The Christian Post why gender ideologues won't even allow a disagreement, Randall pointed to its philosophical roots. 

“It seems to me that if you look at the Marxist-type origins of this sort of thing, what’s going on is that they are objecting to what they regard as religion — the opiate of the masses — this sort of false consciousness, and they just have to educate us into true consciousness,” he said.

“But anybody who says ‘Oh no, I’m quite happy with my religious ideas, I’m quite happy with this consciousness I’ve got already’ is a real threat to the whole set of concepts. They are a threat to the idea that what everybody believes is false and the Marxists will take us to this new wonderful, enlightened utopia.”

“And they cannot tolerate that kind of threat. It’s a very totalitarian system," he added. 

What Randall experienced three years ago in England is what he and others have called “soft totalitarianism,” whereas what people endure in China is “hard totalitarianism.”  

“But the difference between them is not as much as we might like to think,” he stressed.[1] 

ENDS

Doing further research on this subject led me to the Reverend Randall’s sermon, which I attach immediately below. Should you choose to read this, I would like you to remember that consequent to delivering this sermon - at an Anglican school remember - Reverend Randall was not only suspended and then fired but reported to Britain’s Prevent anti-terrorism programme by the school. The Prevent programme is geared towards preventing people becoming or supporting terrorism. Quite obviously the school considered the good Reverend to be a subversive influence endeavouring to radicalise his pupils into Christian terrorists! Still, they crucified Christ for less.

This type of political activism can no longer be regarded as nonsense. It is a ‘clear and present danger’ to all our civic, religious and societal freedoms. Anyone who has cursorily read anything about totalitarianism should recognise this. Those who deny this are either extremely stupid or are themselves of totalitarian inclinations. There is a distinct difference between robust and unfettered debate and shutting down your opponent. As my readers will readily know I hold firm views on a variety of subjects. I reserve the right to express them publicly as I defend the right of people to express opposite views. The old maxim needs restating, politics in a healthy democracy is the competition of ideas.

I will conclude this sad story by confirming my long-standing contempt for the morally perverse leadership of the Church of England and to reiterate my oft expressed imprecations to you all to speak out, clearly and continuously, against the increasing and most obvious curtailment of your freedoms.

Enjoy the good Reverend’s sermon and then think about this story.

ENDS

10 May 2021

‘Competing ideologies’ was the school sermon given by Rev. Bernard Randall to students at Trent College. After giving this talk, Bernard was reported to the government’s counter-terrorism watchdog, Prevent, by the school as a potentially violent religious extremist.[2]

The full text:

I have a theory about Brexit. It seems to me that people who voted to leave the European Union voted for largely political reasons – to do with democratic self-determination; and people who voted to remain did so for largely economic reasons – to do with prosperity and jobs. Of course I’m simplifying here, and both sides claim to consider both, but it seems to me that which set of ideas, which ideology, takes priority determines which way many people voted. And while we can easily discuss facts, and try to find the truth behind factual claims, ideals aren’t true or false in the same way.

And so the problem with the often very heated and unpleasant debate ever since the referendum, is that people haven’t managed to cope with there being two competing sets of ideals – two ideologies. Now when ideologies compete, we should not descend into abuse, we should respect the beliefs of others, even where we disagree. Above all, we need to treat each other with respect, not personal attacks – that’s what loving your neighbour as yourself means. By all means discuss, have a reasoned debate about beliefs, but while it’s OK to try and persuade each other, no one should be told they must accept an ideology. Love the person, even where you profoundly dislike the ideas. Don’t denigrate a person simply for having opinions and beliefs which you don’t share.

There has been another set of competing ideals in the news recently. You may have heard of the protests outside a Birmingham primary school over the teachings of an LGBT friendly “No Outsiders” programme. In a mostly Muslim community, this has been sensitive, because many parents feel that their children are being pushed to accept ideas which run counter to Islamic moral values. Many in that community are concerned, even angry, that their children are having an agenda, an ideology pushed on them, which is in conflict with their religion.

And in our own school community, I have been asked about a similar thing – this is one of the requested topics, and the question was put to me in a very particular way – “How come we are told we have to accept all this LGBT stuff in a Christian school?” I thought that was a very intelligent and thoughtful way of asking about the conflict of values, rather than asking which is right, and which is wrong.

So my answer is this: there are some aspects of the Educate and Celebrate programme which are simply factual – there are same-sex attracted people in our society, there are people who experience gender dysphoria, and so on. There are some areas where the two sets of values overlap – no one should be discriminated against simply for who he or she is: that’s a Christian value, based in loving our neighbours as ourselves, and God making humankind in his image, male and female, and himself loving everyone equally. All these things should be accepted straightforwardly by all of us, and it’s right that equalities law reflects that.

But there are areas where the two sets of ideas are in conflict, and in these areas you do not have to accept the ideas and ideologies of LGBT activists. Indeed, since Trent exists “to educate boys and girls according to the Protestant and Evangelical principles of the Church of England,” anyone who tells you that you must accept contrary principles is jeopardizing the school’s charitable status, and therefore it’s very existence. You should no more be told you have to accept LGBT ideology, than you should be told you must be in favour of Brexit, or must be Muslim – to both of which I’m sure most of you would quite rightly object.

Now I don’t know about the faith of the person who asked me to talk about this topic. I don’t think he would say is religious, though I may be wrong, but I am aware that there will be a good few in our community who will have been struggling, if they feel they are being told that they must accept ideas which run counter to their faith – or indeed non-faith based reasoning about the world. So I want to say to everyone, but especially to those who have been troubled, that you are not obliged to accept someone else’s ideology. You are perfectly at liberty to hear ideas out, and then think, “No, not for me.”

There are several areas where many or most Christians (and for that matter people of other faiths too), will be in disagreement with LGBT activists, and where you must make up your own mind.

So it is perfectly legitimate to think that marriage should only properly be understood as being a lifelong exclusive union of a man and a woman; indeed, that definition is written into English law. You may perfectly properly believe that, as an ideal, sexual activity belongs only within such marriage, and that therefore any other kind is morally problematic. That is the position of all the major faith groups – though note that it doesn’t apply only to same-sex couples. And it is a belief based, not only on scripture, but on a highly positive view of marriage as the building block of a society where people of all kinds flourish, and on recognizing that there are many positive things in life more important than sex, if only we’d let them be. This viewpoint is recognized by many people as extremely liberating. And it’s an ethical position which could also be arrived at independently of any religious text, I think.

In other areas you are entitled to think, if it makes more sense to you, that human beings are indeed male and female, that your sex can’t be changed, that although the two sexes have most things in common, there are some real, biologically based, differences between them overall. And if you think that, you would be in accord not only with the Tradition of most Christians, and other faiths, but much of the biological and psychological sciences too.

You are entitled, if you wish, to look at some of the claims made about gender identity, and think that it is incoherent to say that, for example, gender is quite independent of any biological factor, but that a person’s physiology should be changed to match his or her claimed gender; or incoherent to say that gender identity is both a matter of individual determination and social conditioning at the same time, or incoherent to make claims about being non-binary or gender-fluid by both affirming and denying the gender stereotypes which exist in wider society. And if these claims, which do seem to be made, are incoherent, then they cannot be more than partially true. Yet truth is important as we try to make decisions about the consequences of these ideas.

And you might reasonably notice that some LGBT activists will happily lie about gender identity being a legally protected characteristic (which it isn’t), and from that observation wonder whether there are other areas where their relationship to truth is looser than might be ideal. But by way of contrast, no one has the right to tell you that you must lie about these matters, to say things you sincerely believe to be false – that is the tactic of totalitarianism and dictatorship. On a more positive note, Christians will want to have a discussion about human identity which focusses as most important on the things we all have in common, rather than increasingly long lists of things which might divide us. At the same time, the Christian concern for truth will be trying to distinguish between false stereotypes and those areas of human interaction which are assisted by the practical wisdom of past generations.

You might be concerned that if you take the religious view on these matters you will be attacked, and accused of homophobia and the like. But remember that religious belief is just as protected in law as sexual orientation, and no one has the right to discriminate against you or be abusive towards you. Remember too that “phobia” words have a strict sense of extreme or irrational fear or dislike, like arachnophobia, fear of spiders, or triskaidekaphobia, fear of the number thirteen – well there’s nothing extreme about sharing your view with the Church of England, established by law, and of the majority of the world’s population who belong to these faiths. Nor is it irrational to hold these views, since they can be based both on secular reasoning and on scriptures – and if, on other grounds, you are sure that the scriptures reflect the mind of God, then they provide the very best reasons possible for anything. But “homophobia” and “transphobia” have come to be used in a looser sense to mean often simply “you disagree with me and I’m going to refuse to listen to you, and shame you to shut you down.” In other words they have sometimes come to be terms of abuse, used in a dictionary-definition bigoted and bullying way. You can safely ignore these uses, although that takes real moral courage, I know.

And you may think that LGBT rights are different somehow, because no one chooses to belong to the varied groups represented by these ideas. To which I would remind you that equalities law does not recognize that distinction – all equalities are in fact equal. And I’d also encourage you to remember that what is under consideration in religious and ethical thought is only the actions and choices we do make. And what it may never have occurred to you to realize – that religious people don’t have a choice about what they are either. So, for example, I can no more wake up one morning and choose not to believe in God, than I can choose to believe that the Moon is made of cheese. I just know it isn’t, and I can’t change that.

So, all in all, if you are at ease with “all this LGBT stuff,” you’re entitled to keep to those ideas; if you are not comfortable with it, for the various especially religious reasons, you should not feel required to change. Whichever side of this conflict of ideas you come down on, or even if you are unsure of some of it, the most important thing is to remember that loving your neighbour as yourself does not mean agreeing with everything he or she says; it means that when we have these discussions there is no excuse for personal attacks or abusive language. We should all respect that people on each side of the debate have deep and strongly held convictions. And because, unlike Brexit, this is not a debate which is subject to a vote, it is an ongoing process, so there should be a shared effort to find out what real truth looks like, and to respect that that effort is made honestly and sincerely by all people, even if not everybody comes up with the same answers for now.

ENDS

 


[1] https://www.christianpost.com/news/anglican-school-chaplain-fired-not-caving-lgbt-indoctrination-warns-of-soft-

22. Jun, 2022

Just when we thought we could forget about the appalling Morrison a bleak joke recently appeared to remind us of his truly atrocious tenure as Prime Minister – Ita Buttrose.

We all remember dear Ita – butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth – Buttrose. Her picture that launched a thousand quips.  Australian of the Year, founding editor of Cleo, long-time editor of the Australian Woman’s Weekly, the perennial face of the modern woman who worked her way to the top in a man’s world – right, you’ve got the picture.

What you’ve doubtless forgotten was that, in 2019, she was Morrison’s ‘Captain’s Pick’ to head that fusty and atavistic consumer of public monies, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Appointing a 77 year old Australian fashion icon and journo and the seemingly embodiment of all that was decent and wholesome, to control a crusty collective of Marxist recidivists and a crèche for political wannabees unable to find real work elsewhere - whatever was the man drinking?

Not all her skills, including her 2011 book, A Guide to Australian Etiquette, could prepare Ita for that. In no time the duckies, the luvvies, the assorted puppeteers of the left together with the general social misfits that inhabit that space had her house-trained. Soon she was really talking the talk – and to prove she could finally walk the walk in February this year she conned Morrison to the tune of $3.3bn over the next three years.

The transformation was complete: independent, well-respected Australian journo, businesswoman and decent person transmogrified into the compleat regressive prog stooge. 

But hold the horses -  only last weekend came the news that:  ABC chair Ita Buttrose has been accused of failing to comply with the broadcaster’s own editorial style guide in a major speech where she referred to First Nations people as “Aborigines”.[1]

My God. Shock, awe and horror! NCA NewsWire journo Ryan Young reported that:  Former ABC, SBS and NITV journalist Jennetta Quinn-Bates took offence at use of the term “Aborigines” and took to Twitter to highlight it was not in line with the ABC style guide.

Evidently the hapless Ita used the term in Sydney on Friday night as she delivered an annual media lecture in honour of the distinguished journalist Andrew Olle, who died in 1995 at age 48.

Multiplatform Journalist at SBS and NITV, Ms Quinn-Bates’ rage was palpable: “She’s still calling us Aborigines and basically reminding First Nations people we’re lucky for any air time at all,” Ms Quinn-Bates wrote.

Responding to comments her Twitter post had attracted, Ms Quinn-Bates said “speaking this way sets a terrible example…..Leaders are meant to be admirable, not ignorant and borderline racist…This is unacceptable.”

Ms Quinn-Bates took it upon herself to express: “Sincerest apologies to my former ABC indigenous colleagues.”

Well – What to say about all this anger, insensitivity and self-righteousness?

I’ll start off by saying I’m totally discombobulated. I’ve always understood the word aborigine to be of Latin extraction, being: ab origine – ‘from the beginning’. 

To this end I thought an aborigine was a person, or descendant thereof, that has been in a country or region from the earliest of times:  thus, in the Australian context, to describe the earliest inhabitants of our continent, aborigine [noun] and its adjective, aboriginal, were therefore correct, proper and ‘good’ words. 

Moreover, for years I’ve lived by the definition given by Australia’s own Macquarie [National] Dictionary: aborigine noun 1. one of a race of tribal peoples, the earliest inhabitants of Australia. 2. a descendent of these people, sometimes of mixed blood.  3. [pl] (generally) the primitive  inhabitants of a country;  the people living in a country at the earliest period.[2]

Thus a definition that has served everyone well – including Blackfellas and Whitefellas – yes, those terms are still the accepted currency of mutual classification in many parts of non-latte chatterati Australia.

On the 27th of May 1967 Australians were asked to vote in a referendum to approve or disapprove:

"An Act to alter the Constitution so as to omit certain words relating to the People of the Aboriginal Race in any State and so that Aboriginals are to be counted in reckoning the Population"?

To which 90.77% said yes.

Personally I have trouble with the wording of the question inasmuch it fails to distinguish between noun and adjective in the word ‘Aboriginal’ – but then, who am I to question the wisdom of our constitutional lawyers who framed the question. 

But I am more than happy to discuss the question of what to call our aborigines.

Let’s start with the nonsense raised by Ms Quinn-Bates. I thank her for letting me know that the ABC style guide wants us to refer to them as First Nations Peoples.

One can theorise, rant, rage, write revisionist history or use as much sophistry as one likes, but one can never describe the motley collection of hunter gatherer tribes that sparsely populated Australia as ‘Nations’. One can change the definition of nations until it becomes meaningless – say, any group of two or more subsisting in the wilderness – they are not a nation.

So what to call them? Let’s look at the history of their collective description. ‘Natives’ seemed to be the original formal choice of colonial times.  Agencies of colonial governments were set up to protect natives, to provide native welfare, the police had native trackers and native mounted police and so on. That term fell out of popular parlance in favour of aborigines. Thereafter existed a raft of government agencies providing aboriginal welfare, aboriginal housing, aboriginal health, aboriginal education and so forth.

Indeed, in 1990 the Hawke government established The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission [ATSIC], the Federal Government body through which Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Islanders were to be formally involved in the processes of government affecting their lives. A great deal of money was expended on a great number of aboriginal programmes under the aegis of ATSIC. Moreover, evidently the Commission provided, on the side, a great deal of money to select and favoured people before it was dissolved in 2005 after extensive investigations into corruption and embezzlement.

At this point further collective names were coming to the fore in the lucrative field of aboriginal politics.  

The term ‘indigenous’ began to see favour, meaning a peoples originating or occurring naturally in a particular place, native to or associated with a place by birth: being an indigenous inhabitant of Australia. Thereafter the idea of ‘custodians’ of the land received some traction as did ‘traditional owners’, and now we have ‘first nations’.

The term ‘first nations’ was coined in the hotbed of woke guilt, Canada. As evidenced by everything woke in Australia, practising wokists are far too bland to imagine original terms for their perceived social injustices – so looking further afield for inspiration as to how best to describe our aborigines let us cast our eyes to the crackpot demi-nation south of Canada, the so called United States. That benighted nation contains Black Americans, White Americans, Afro Americans, Hispanic Americans,  Asian Americans, Latino Americans, Native Americans - in fact as many Americans as there are other nations in the world.

So, given that our aborigines don’t like being called aborigines; given they do not qualify remotely as a nation or a collection of nations, and given the foregoing examples of choice, we could call them – Black Australians, or Native Australians,  Aboriginal Australians,  Abo Australians,  Australasian Australians, Austro Australians, Southern Oceans Australians, Oceanic Australians or, perhaps my favourite, Proto-Australians. The latter infers that these peoples lived on the continent before Australia existed and therefore they should be free to enjoy all the rights, privileges and protection in place in this continent before the civilising influence of the Crown.

Let me set aside this satirical tone in favour of some serious comment. The tribes that inhabited this continent before colonisation were not the Rousseauan idyll of peoples living in paradise corrupted by the advent of Western civilisation, as so many contemporary commentators would have us believe. The Australian continent is generally extremely harsh. The tribes were disparate hunter gatherers, a minority of whom practised cannibalism; some of whom for extremely practical and sound reasons, practised infanticide. In short life was, for most, ‘nasty brutish and short’ to coin a phrase. 

This history has been totally expurgated to the point that today’s schoolchildren are being taught meaningless rubbish about our early Australians.

There can be no doubt that the aborigines of Australia were often treated harshly, many were killed, deliberately. This is regrettable, it is tragic. It is also history. They were the values and attitudes of the times – white people were also treated harshly – brutally – that is also regrettable. They were hard harsh times. We should read and appreciate our history accurately, sometimes with sadness, perhaps sometimes with shame, and sometimes with pride. It is one thing to bring historical events to our notice, but it is totally another thing assume the moral arrogance in judging values retrospectively and then visiting the perceived sins of the fathers upon their sons. None of us have that right. To do so is not only a travesty of justice but a sheer moral nonsense. It serves only to perpetuate discord, injustice, discrimination and the enrichment of a select and undeserving few.

I have no doubt Ita will cave in to her Tea Room Soviet back at the ABC. Having now reached the age four-score, I’m sure she has far better things to do with her remaining years than trying to deal with that confounding farrago.

So, in conclusion, what are we going to call that marginal [3%][3] cohort of our broad Australian community who claim their lineage back to the original tribesmen of this continent – let’s simply call them Australians.

ENDS

22. May, 2022

Well the election has come and gone. Our cumbersome farce and so overly democratic electoral system, ceasing to be representative in any meaningful manner, has delivered us into the hands of a new set of the ineffable Chesterton’s ‘unhappy Lords’.   

On a positive note, it did rid us of the abhorrent Morrison and his excuse for a government and it has provided us with lots of angst and outright entertainment in watching the new bunch of clowns in their endeavour to implement their various social engineering, environmental and clean energy policy. Their forays into foreign affairs should be at least as much fun as the last shower.

Let me be plain. I disagree with nearly everything this new government stands for- but I respect the fact that they stand for something and I wish them well. If they can get this country out of its current moral and economic slough they will deserve our gratitude. I do not however hold out any hopes.

I am however far more interested in the important lessons to be absorbed from this election.

The farcically low vote for the two major parties amply indicates a deep electoral dissatisfaction with politics, politicians and all their doings. It is surely time for this benighted species to smarten their footwork and actually listen to and act upon the wishes of their electors.

The appalling paucity of policy debate during the course of this election totally confounds belief. This country stands in the cross-hairs of geopolitical crisis; it is in hock to god knows who for trillions of dollars; its economy is in peril; urban Australia is busting at the seams and the price of housing is a national disgrace; our manufacturing base is non-existent; our agriculture sector is flailing; our island continent has been recently ravaged by drought; fire and flood; our armed forces are pathetic; we are a maritime nation without a merchant fleet and the list continues.

Where was the debate about infrastructure planning; regional and urban planning; manufacturing development; agricultural development; dry-land farming and water security; defence planning and ship-building; value adding our mineral resources; immigration policies and so forth and so on?

Watching television yesterday was a depressing experience, as swathes of the great unwashed, interviewed on camera, repeated the mantra – climate change; women’s rights, the economy – period. Not a word about the big picture. Why?

Because none of our putative leaders led any substantive debate or unveiled any cost effective and practicable polices in these critical matters.

A distinguishing feature of this election was the eloquent affirmation of the old maxim that ‘money talks’. The overnight appearance from the posh catwalks of our country of a bevy of haute-couture and well-heeled teal bimbos spruiking the same and only song they knew – climate change – made a total mockery of the term ‘independent’. These ‘independents’ were underwritten largely by a scion of one of the most ruthless and rapacious West Australian tycoons of the ‘seventies and ‘eighties, who himself, and of course totally coincidently, is purported to have large investments in the alternative energy sector. This agenda-laden bevy of air-headed beauties represents a disturbing trend in Australian politics being the exercise of blatant wealth and pure and untrammelled elitism.      

A cursory review of the credentials of most of these independents reveals that many come from old money and old political families – suggesting perhaps a ‘born to rule’ attitude whilst others come from media and activist backgrounds. All contested and many now represent affluent and once classical Liberal electorates and all may be classified as being part of Australia’s wealth elite.

The American term ‘luxury belief’ is most apposite here. This virtue signalling tokenism to socio-political fads and fashions such as ‘climate change’ is readily affordable to the wealthy who can afford it: but it comes at great cost to the poor and struggling classes who cannot.

This new political elite introduces a new and unwanted element into Australian politics. It smacks of the egregious British class system and, more significantly, distorts quite substantially the national debate about the subject. Sadly it speaks volumes about the electorates that voted for this vapid and pampered cohort of political irritants.

On this theme, the significance of the Green vote in the inner urban electorates is also indicative of a dangerous trend in Australian politics. It represents solidification of the divide between not only ‘town’ and ‘country’ but of ultra-urban and regional Australia. Although the divide between town and country had been a natural feature of politics in every country since time immemorial, hard Green policies designed to appeal to the ultra-urbanite Green voter has the potential to play a disproportional role in shaping both Liberal and Labor policies. Moreover, the Greens can rely upon a ready and willing cohort of vocal and violent supporters and activists to press their point.

As inner urban dwelling became chic so did the appeal of the Greens to the extent that they now are a credible force dictating policy over industries such as mining, fishing and agriculture that they know little about. The divide between city and country is a matter that requires serious address.   

This election has highlighted the need for a totally new centre-right force in this country’s political milieu. A force that can openly, honestly and actually aggregate the aspirations and values of ordinary working men and women of Australia. We had a party like that once – it was called the Liberal Party. Sadly, it disappeared.

From a personal perspective I am delighted at the results of this election. It supports my long-held thesis that the time for liberal representative democracy has come and gone. Secondly, the advent of the aforementioned bevy of independents has relegated my far too long-standing, rancorous and abominable independent local member into a furthered role of total irrelevance.   

ENDS

11. Apr, 2022

 To mark the beginning of Holy Week, the most sacred period in the Christian calendar, Australian Prime Minister Morrison called a Federal election for 21 May.

 As though this wasn’t depressing enough for those of us that had our mind on higher things, the headlines of Queensland’s Sunday Mail blared: “Race that Defines a Nation” rubbing it in that the triennial electoral cycle of nonsense had commenced. Confirming this, pages four and five contained editorial puff pieces by the Leader of the Opposition and the Prime Minister under the respective headings: We can be a nation that builds and You know what we stand for.  

 What utter tosh!

 The leader of the Labor-Green Axis has gone the complete Biden in his non-articulation of policy or specific ideas. Moreover his political movement has proved itself either diametrically opposed to, or totally incompetent at effecting commercial progress, economic development, mineral mining and sound infrastructure development.

 The current Labor-Green Axis is not my choice of government – however I respect their commitment to their principles. They wish to totally re-engineer Australian society. I have greater respect generally for leaders of the Labor Party. They have a broader vision of what society could be like. Unfortunately I find most of their offerings in this regard quite abhorrent. But I really do know what to expect with such a government under their watch.

 By contrast, the Prime Minister’s blatant lie is as insulting as it is manifestly obvious. We certainly do not know what he stands for! In three years he has proved himself as evasive, slippery and treacherous as King John in his dealings with his nobles over the question of the Magna Carta.

 This Prime Minister has, for three years, played fast and loose with every principle and policy he articulated at the last election. He has demonstrated he is a straw man without any political conviction and will blow wherever the wind takes him. Over the Covid crisis he provided no strength of Prime Ministerial leadership, letting the states ride rough-shod over him. A National Cabinet for heaven’s sake! He was the Prime Minister. Period. His word should have been enough. Period. He should have led and directed. Period. Who can forget his cringing comments on 6PR radio in Perth supporting McGowan’s lockdown only days after he had publicly railed about it!

 He is a straw man and, like a man clutching at straws, he imposed upon us a new defence treaty, the full ramifications of which we know little about – probably because none of the signatories really appreciate what it’s about, being policy made on the run by all parties.

 On the question of defence, let us not forget the Prime Minister’s craven withdrawal from Afghanistan. Let us not forget how quick he was to condemn the Special Forces soldiers before they’d even had a trial! Let us not forget how he sent troops and police to the Solomon Islands to shut down the rioters who were rioting against Chinse influence in their islands!  And now we are involving ourselves in a perceived popular bandwagon by sending our expensive military assets to yet another war which is none of our business. As for the saga of the submarines…

 The Liberal-National Axis comprise a species of political humanity I detest. From years of experience dealing with them I know they stand for nothing, they understand nothing except the bottom line and they see the world through the prism of the next election.

 They, of which this Prime Minister is a prime example, constantly pander to the woke and progressive side of politics; time and time again they fritter away heaven sent opportunities to seriously push back; they reward their enemies and ignore their friends; they have no inclination or stomach to engage in the culture wars; they stand in abject cowardice before the education and university establishments; their much vaunted expertise in economic management is no more than sensible book-keeping and reducing costs, and they have no taste whatsoever for major long-term defence and infrastructure planning – one of the key foundations for Australian federation in the first place.

 The electoral choice facing Australians in forty days’ time is extremely dismal: a government of political chancers who have proved over their past three terms that they are unfit to govern, or a government of radical progressives who will endeavour to turn this country into a socially nihilistic state sans freedom of thought and expression fit for the likes of crazies such as Nancy Pelosi.

 I caution however that although the former – the devil you know - might sound the more tempting option of the two, a vote for the Liberal-National Axis is essentially a vote for the other side inasmuch that their continuation to pander to progressivism in truth represents a death by a thousand cuts.

 Neither of the two major parties can in any sense be called democratic or truly representative of their electorates. The electoral wheeling and dealing; the so-called ‘captains picks’; the candidate parachuting into electorates and so forth of the past few months amply demonstrates that the parties care not a tinker’s tuppence about the individual electorates. They want high profile candidates to garner votes no matter his or her political convictions.

Sadly, we will never be able to reconstitute our failed system of representative democracy as it stands. It requires a root and branch overhaul. But we can apply some badly needed first-aid. In doing so we have to accept that both major political groupings are badly soiled. Having thus done, it behoves us to apply serious contemplation on the individual candidates on offer in our electorates.

Have they really represented you and your values during their term in parliament? What about the party they belong to? Has that party really lived up to your expectations? If you answer these questions critically and honestly you might surprise yourself.

 Then, quite obviously, we should turn our attentions to alternatives. Forget the imprecations of the major parties telling you not to ‘waste or throwaway your vote’ and so forth and so on. They have a necessarily vested interest in you following the party ‘How to Vote’ card. Have a look at the alternative candidates. Do their values align more with yours? What about alternative parties you might not have considered before – do their policies resonate better with you than the same old same old?   

 In the spirit of Holy Week it is my view that we badly need some restoration of spiritual values in the Federal Parliament: we badly need representatives that are able to discern the difference between right and wrong, representatives who have the strength of conscience, will and intellect to stand up to the majority and tell the Emperor that he isn’t wearing any clothes.

 If you share my general disgust with all politicians and all their doings, I urge you to exercise your considered choice in this election. I know we have a crock of inconsequence to choose from, but as each election cycle spews out less attractive candidates than the previous one, the very least we can do is to make a concerted endeavour to leaven the moral fibre of those who seek to govern us.

ENDS