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:: Monday, 22 September 2003 ::

Never give a wog an even break

The Guardian reckons this:

Iraq was effectively put up for sale yesterday, when the US-backed administration unveiled a sweeping overhaul of the economy, giving foreign companies unprecedented access to Iraqi firms which are to be sold off in a privatisation windfall.

Under the new rules, announced by the finance minister, Kamil Mubdir al-Gailani, in Dubai, foreign firms will have the right to wholly own Iraqi companies, except those in the oil, gas and mineral industries. There will be no restrictions on the amount of profits that can be repatriated or on using local products. Corporate tax will be set at 15%.

Iraq has a Finance Minister? It has a more attractive corporate tax rate than Oz? Oil gas and minerals, the biggest earners for Iraq's government are not being privatised so the State of Iraq can get international funds into itself through retaining control of its oil gas and mineral reserves? Iraqi 'firms' (a.k.a 'public sector companies' a.k.a staterun Ba'athist monopolies, 192 of 'em, are being privatised and bidding compeition is fierce, leading to an influx of funds into Iraq and loads o' jobs for local Iraqis? And even Oz companies can get involved?

This is a bad thing?

Jees. What can you do with lefties? A rundown socialist shithole governing structure is getting the heavy duty exfoliation to reveal the supple tightened pores of an active freer market beneath, and the Guardian thinks that's bad.

Read the article. Obligatory sneer at Haliburton and Cheney. Obligatory Doug-an'-Wendy-Whiiiiiinerrr voice natch recorded by the BBC (as if they could even find a Mahboob in Baghdad who actually is interested in making a living. Oh no. Nope. Those guys sure don't exist anywheres about).

Any superintense tendering process like what is going on now cannot possibly go alright all the time. There have to be guys doing the sleepless nights getting bids ready, pitches perfect, proposal printed, powerpoint presentations primed and CD's burned all in readiness for their chance at winning an engineering bid here or an IT services contract there or whatever. Iraqi guys included.

I reckon it is a top thing to see how damned fast all this is happening. And with bombs daily still the country gets better and better.

Any jackass wants to craft this as 'rape' the way the Gaurdian does in this tinking article, well, have at it.


:: WB 4:09 a.m. [link+] ::
Super thoughful stuff about Islam and Europe

Islam and Europe. Usual high standaards from Euro bloggers.

:: WB 3:46 a.m. [link+] ::
"She wants chocolate. Mum's not lookin'. "Here. Have the whole bloody block." And you know what? It works out. She's not a chubby little chocolate freak kid."

Steve Irwin, Crocodile Hunter. Quote from 'Australian Story' talking about his baby daughter.

:: WB 3:23 a.m. [link+] ::
Oh Lileks.

Ooooh, Monday Lileks. How could you? How could you call such delicious comestibles by that horrible horrible name? You bad bad man.



:: WB 3:10 a.m. [link+] ::
Good Lord. What is The Sun thinking?

I mean this whole beating thing is a totally serious matter. But "Woman editor"? Could you be any more sexisty patronisy?

And what is with the cartoon accompanying this editorial?


:: WB 3:08 a.m. [link+] ::
:: Friday, 19 September 2003 ::
This is not good

But Jeez, must you try to overtake a goddam American military convoy with the boys with the guns on the top? And must they shoot so fast? Maybe it is just a guy driving an impatient Italian nagging at him to overtake and go faster.

God, how awful.

That, and the awfulness of that recent Iraqi police shooting thing, with the car chase and the Americans firing on the good guys in an unmarked car chasing the bad guys in an unmarked car and the hospital and the more firing, amemba?

Somebody needs to get to Baghdad quick and start marking the cars.

Surely there's some idle graffiti-ing youth we can send out for this superurgent task.

Urgh. Now I am sad.

Buona notte.

:: WB 7:06 a.m. [link+] ::
Hands off Gilligan...

Is there nothing the Tories won't stoop to?

The deal seems to me to be this: today is 19 September. Then it was, what, May or something. What we know now is that Saddam was a horror. What we knew then was that Saddam was a horror. What we know now is that there is a part of this planet that is really stuffed, and it is the Middle East. What we know now is that one less despot rules in the Middle East.

Anyone wants to go back, shoot yourself already.

Anyone wants to bleat about how 'my govt lied' ask yourself this: if they didn't would you have ever been in favour of lifting a finger to help some wogs on the other side of the world?


Didn't think so.


:: WB 6:46 a.m. [link+] ::
Top Observation

Iranian farmers -- a chicken in every pot, an anti-aircraft missile launcher on every tractor.

On the blogroll.

:: WB 6:31 a.m. [link+] ::
:: Tuesday, 16 September 2003 ::

Since the articles about this are confused for the moment ('cept the above one is a start, but), let the wog help you understand just what has happened in Cancun:

70 nations of the world, not including competent nations like Chile and Italy and Australia and New Zealand and Ireland etc etc, but including nations such as Brazil and India (you see my point already yes?) let the whole world trade thing fall over in Cancun by refusing to even contemplate, for a minute, the matters listed below, opting instead to insist that first, countries like Australia and Italy and Chile must open up their markets to the agricultural goods of the Brazils and Indias, without getting any corresponding opening up of markets in return.

And what were the issues which the 'poor' 70 countries flat out refused to address:

1. stop with the corruption you corrupt shitheads with the backsheesh and the bribery (otherwise known as transparency in govt procurement);

2. No, you cannot have a kickback (otherwise known as transparency in customs clearances);

3. Do I look like I am standing in a medieval bazaar? I will not barter with you (otherwise known as transparency in foreign investment);

4. Just tell me what the thing costs, man. Please. No, not the 'tax man costs' winkwink, and then the 'for you cashmoney costs' nudgenudge (otherwise known as transparency in facilitating trade).

No one else wants to say it. But I can cos I am a wog.

I think I may have to check these 70 nations.

Money down they are listed on the Human Rights Watch as the worst offenders on earth, they all got lousy crime rates, stinking poverty and they are all as corrupt as all get out.

Money down this state of affairs is their own doing too.


Makes it hard to love wogs, eh?

:: WB 4:58 a.m. [link+] ::
:: Monday, 15 September 2003 ::
Quality Work From Quality Euro Bloggers

It's all good.

:: WB 3:04 a.m. [link+] ::
:: Sunday, 7 September 2003 ::
Sheikh Khalid Yasin speaking on ABC radio (natch)

Islam is under some pressure for terorism lately. How do you respond to to this?
It's a bit rich for the West to address Islam and terrorism when the West's own history is one of terrorism. Terrorism is not a place where we should start to evaluate Muslims. Let us start instead not even with Muslims. I mean, I wouldn't just Christendom by Christians.


How do you deal with fanaticism?
How does a government govern citizens? Through regulation. So how can Muslim leaders do it? We have no government. We can only preach. We can onlyl try to educate. To teach tolerance. But it is very unfair for Muslims to be denied global representation. They are denied global representation. Muslims need central government. I believe we need for things to come from the top down. I therefore promote that Muslims should be attached to ideas of community. This is the seed of Islam.

Where does the Shari'a fit into that?
Well, this is the rules, the law. If you do not have a people who are governed by Shari'a then you have a lawless people.

Oh, ladies, you must just lerv that.

How do you consider the operation of legislation and the role of Islam?
There is no law without God. This separation of church and state does not exist in Islam. Because the law is God's law, not man's law.

So do you think there can be a secular Islamic state? Turkey?
No. It does not work. It cannot work. The law is God's law. The source of law in Islam is superior to anything else.

What's your view of Malaysia and Indonesia, they are struggling with this at the moment?
Well, change cannot occur immediately. But we can look at Nigeria as an excellent example of Shari'a. Sweeping changes have been made.

But what about that case of the stoning?
One case of thousands is not a fair comparison. Her isolated case is not for Western reactions.

Do you think Shari'a can entertain the tolerance to allow others to practice their own religions?
Historically Islam has always shown tolerance, Shari'a is Spain, Shari'a in the Ottoman Empire. Nigeria needs some time.

How do you marry reporesentative democracy with Shari'a?
Representative democracy is by the people for the people. But God's law is settled and it is not for men to make laws where God has laid down law.
Represetnative democracy involves legislation, where men can marry men and women can marry women, they can adopt children and whole notions of family are turned upside.

Now, what you are saying is that Shari'a is above representative democracy, above parliament, is that right?
Yes. That's right and we make no apology for it. It is God's law, it is superior.

But Christians are in conflict with this because representative democracy can function with Christianity. Your solution is that Christians must capitulate to Islam?
No. No. Not conflict. Competition. We Muslims strive with dignity, without subversion, with tolerance, we strive to live under Shari'a. And it is only right that we be given the same opportunity as others to have our laws. Christians have their laws.

Calvin in Geneva and Cromwell in England - in Christian tradition, theocracy has been tried and has failed because the diversity of interpretation led to a conclusion that the preachers could not be paramount over parliament. Doesn't Islam too have many preachers?
No. There is a clear law. An apple is an apple whether it is rotten on the tree or falls or what the fuck? No idea what that is about.

Enough. Now they are talking about him.

He has a lovely voice, and a cool down with the homies kinda language. But it is still Shari'a. And he's not ashamed of his homophobia or of the stoning of girlies in Nigeria.

I don't wish to be tolerated, sir. I wish to be full on ignored by you and yours.

:: WB 6:51 a.m. [link+] ::
:: Saturday, 6 September 2003 ::
What can I say?

I do not share all Berlusconi's views. But I am interested in the Economist stuff, becuase that magazine really loathes Silvio and they want him gone gone gone.

Now, I was a devotee of the Economist for a few years but I started to get shitty with its coverage of Oz. It is just plain off. No idea. Spiral arm stuff. No connection with us, almost as bad as that stupid BBC-er who does the world news stuff. But I still kept up with the magazine, cos I found its editorial position on Iraq pretty persuasive, although the Italian stuff began to annoy me too.

Slow. Did not put two and two together as it were, not til recently.

Cos if it is wrong about Oz, then it can be wrong about other stuff. And it is wrong about Silvio - they hammer him too hard and they do mistake the cops and the robbers. A politicised magistracy is a fact of life in Italy. You cannot deny the leftwing philosophies that pervade public positions. It is all over, self-serving, and zealous. His laws putting off the trials til after he leaves office is probably the best compromise to shut the magistrates investigations down in an official way now. They can still dredge up all they want, of course. They just cannot tie up Silvio in court over and over.

And the whole Italian teevee media thing is a bore because Silvio is right - most press and teevee is leftwing. A fact of life. How can the Economist have missed that? They must have a man on the ground, like the BBC fool here in Oz, who simply cannot see it, cannot see past his own biases.

Anyhoo, I cannot defend Silvio for his Andreotti nonsense and I am not gonna try.

But I do love that he sticks it up the Germans.

:: WB 6:26 p.m. [link+] ::
Just a little bit further.

It is not enough to admit that they overplayed Kelly's status.

Kelly did not support their spiral-arm allegations. Kelly was in fact pro-war.

They need to admit that Gilligan and they had an agenda that was anti-war and they ran it, using Kelly wrongfully.

:: WB 6:16 p.m. [link+] ::
Germaine Greer hates wogs.

She hates them so much they are not even allowed to exist in her lexicon. How do I know? Cos she is in the Aus this weekend (no link) writing a huge piece all about how whitefellas have been influenced by Aboriginals way more than anyone has ever realised. Note to crazy lady - no one has noticed cos it is overstated bullshit.

People, white black and oily, are influenced by each other. Full stop.

And Oz is not made up of whitefellas and blackfellas. It is made up of whitefellas, wogs and blackfellas. It is. Get it together. And there are more wogs in Oz than Aboriginals. There just are. And most wogs have not even come into social contact with Aborigines. So there is simply no influence there at all either way. And the wogs that have come into contact with Aborigines are of course influenced by them, and vice versa. Why on earth wouldn't they be? They are people with something to contribute. Natural influence.

No need to overstate it.

And no need at all to write this rubbish:
Non-Aboriginal Australians no longer understand Kriol [creole language used in Northern Australia]...

As if we ever did. As if all Aboriginal Australians even ever did. Ahem. The south and the east and the west never spoke Kriol or understood it, not in 1788 and not anytime between then and now. Why would they? Aboriginals aren't some vaste herd of hive minds. It is a big country and folks from all over are not the same. Adelaide today has a accent - is that the Aboriginals dyathink or the German free settlers? My money's on the wogs. Have you ever been on a tram in Melbourne listening to Vietnamese kiddies? They sound just like Italian wogs in Carlton. Full on. O. Mo. God. Not an Aboriginal linguistic influence in site. Where do they fit in Greer's idiot vision. Nowhere. There is no room for wogs in her world.

I think she is an awful person. A panderer to blacks cos it suits her to feel she is in a vanguard, even when she's just an old moll cruising through life in the last cabin of a road train. She thinks blackfellas, like wogs and whitefellas, really enjoy arselickers. How freakin' wrong can she be?

We like credit where it is due. Like everyone else on the bloody planet. And never where it isn't.

Useless old slapper.

:: WB 5:23 p.m. [link+] ::
I think Former Prime Minister Paul Keating is waiting for me to die.


Otherwise, what to make of this stuff he spoke about in The Age when lauching that book attacking Windshuttle?

Let us take a closer look, then, eh? This is gonna take a while and a few posts.

The protagonists and antagonists in the debate about Australia's history and identity are surrogates in a broader political battle about Australia's future, a battle that is being fought in the pubs and on the footpaths.

For the Australian story to be a record of continuing success, it has to come to terms with our expropriation of the land, our ambivalence about who we are, and our place in the new geopolitical make-up of the region.

Okay. Paragraph 1. he is on the money about the pubs and footpaths, if by them he means everywhere from the factory floor to the butchery to the University Law Quadrangle and to the top end of town. But it is hardly a battle. It is a discourse. And it is hardly a unique discourse – it is going on everywhere from the fake Irish pubs of Italy to the footpaths of Mexico City. It is a discourse about leftwing philosophy and how lousy it is.

But paragraph 2? We have come to terms with our expropriation of land. It was expropriated. And there ain’t no one wants to go back. And we are not ambivalent about who we are. We are Australians living in the (second) greatest country on earth. And our place in the region is known. Number 1. With daylight between us and numbers 2 et al, and that won’t change no matter how much numbers 2 et al mess with their own geopolitical make-up. I mean really.

You gotta break this down ‘cos it is a code. ‘Come to terms with expropriation’ means we must apologise to the Aboriginals for the expropriation by which we come to be living here, never mind that many of the folks here, being wogs, have absolutely zip zero to apologise about and frankly if it has to be anyone it has to be the descendant so of the Irish and the English who did the expropriating, if they can be identified, to do the apologising. Otherwise drop it. It is boring.

We must become a republic because until we become a republic we cannot possibly be fully functioning human beings with a stable democracy. Noo.

And geography means more than culture so we must eschew the magna carta tradition that functions here in Oz in favour of engaging more closely with the countries of Asia with whom we share precisely no historical or cultural connection. Because they are Asians, Not Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesians, Malaysians, Taiwanese, Singaporean, Philipino. Nooo. Just little brown hardworking Asians. Aren’t they cute? Urgh. Suffocating racism.

History is always our most useful tool and guide, because knowing our past helps us to divine our future.

The question for this nation is, how do we find a pathway to a genuine security, a naturally reinforced security in Asia and not from Asia, where we are not a client state perennially searching for a strategic guarantor. Once it was the British navy. Now it's the American defence establishment.

More code, you see it? Stop with the Yank arselicking and develop a taste for sucking Asian arseholes. Vulgar, I know. But that is Keating’s sentiment. And zif we get fake security now out of our relationship with America when we could get into some real genuine security by making nice with Asia. Be a republic, piss the Yanks off and get with the Asian program. Same old Keating. Cos everyone knows we do not need to be on side with the Yanks any more. It is not like there is a war on terror or anything important going on, or any horrible murmurs from Indonesia’s number 2 sounding just like the Bali Bombers, and Mahathir’s regular slurs, meaning noises from Asia. Nooo. It is not as though now might be a good time to preserve some history and to be on the side of fighting against terror and in favour of democracy. Nooo.

Moving along.

Those who militantly defend the conservative orthodoxy see all change as an affront to the past, especially their view of the past - whereas knowing the past and seeing it for what it is, with all its blemishes, allows us to divine our destiny for our appointment with reality.
That appointment with reality has come. We are no longer part of some empire. We are no longer some appendage dangling off the British Isles. We are no longer protected by the British navy. While people may say we're protected by the Americans, we have to understand what reality here means.

Republic, Republic, Republic. Dump the Yanks and damn the consequences. It is not matter of whether I may say (thankyou so for letting me speak, m’lord) or do say the Yanks protect me. It is a matter of fact that we share, among other things, a common view of robust democracy as an objectively good thing and an alertness for imbecilic terrorists and an aim of preventing terrorism as well as punishing it when it does occur. And the reality is that our relationship with America might piss the terrorists off, but frankly, terrorists are imbeciles who cannot be reasoned with so who cares what they think.

As for this business of ‘all change being an affront to the past’ well, I will go out on a limb and say the ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ philosophy is, in my view, a good one, so long as you stay alert for when the ‘it’ actually does break. But Keating has an ‘I am telling you it is broken’ zeal that is disconcerting. He has no argument, just a slur – in this case dangling appendage. Nice. He expects me to assume the kneeling position before his dangling appendage, yes? Cos there is no other compelling argument he can raise for a republic.

I've never understood why the John Howards and the Geoffrey Blaineys et al are defensive, so resistant to novelty and to progress. They are more than conservatives. They are reactionaries.

Conservatives accept changes. Reactionaries resist those changes. Understanding and acknowledging the past and moving on to bigger and better things is anathema to them.

Those who want to celebrate only our European past, rejoicing in its prejudices, and who want us to be exclusive and cocooned, must lose.

Good grief. This code is hardly code at all. People who are not ashamed of Captain Cook and Gould, and are not ashamed of the Black and White Minstrel Show and Coons shoes, well, they must lose the robust pub and footpath battle. They have to be battled until they are ashamed. Shame is the aim. God help us. Shamed into a republic. As if that is a reason to become one. God.

And people who think the mandatory detention of folks who turn up in Oz without the slightest authority (and having shown nothing but disrespect for our laws and for international laws concerning the movement of folks in trouble, having passed on hanging in other Asian nations on their way to our waters, and having paid a criminal to put their own lives in danger and those of their families, and who bloody well have thrown their kids into the water, just like they do in the Adriatic to the Italians) is okeedokie by them, so long as it leads to processing and a final decision in or out - well, apparently they must lose too. They must be battled in the pubs and on the footpaths until they no longer give a shit who comes here and how they get in.

Must lose. Sheesh.

And as it happens, I am one who wants to celebrate only my European past and prejudices. Natch. I am a wog. You think I am going to celebrate some Croat’s past? Nah. He can celebrate it. Good for him. I got my own thanks a lot. Jeez.

They insist on their view and the lessons they see in our history. Yet in their insistence, their proprietorialness, their derivativeness and their rancour, they reduce the flame and energy within the nation to just a smouldering incandescence.
What they effectively do is crimp and cripple our destiny. It's like suffering from some sort of political anaemia, because the energy is not there.

Well now. That certainly is blunt. I am crippling our destiny.

I am not, actually, so relax.

But do you see the code?. Historians who insist on disinterested objectivity and fact (Blainey Windshuttle) are challenging ideological history (Reynolds Macintrye Clark Clark Ryan Manne et al) and this is bad because made up history allows us to get to the shame thing all the quicker, and that will lead to a republic quicker too. And that is what we want. But these guys are slowing us down. Sapping our energy. Bugger. Who knew shoddy scholarship would ever need defending, and that defending it would take up so much time?

:: WB 4:29 p.m. [link+] ::
Part 2:

The problem that the Howards and Blaineys have is that their story is simply not big enough for Australia. No great transformation can come from their tiny view of us and their limited faith in us. Their failure is not simply one of crabbiness or rancour; it's a serious failure of imagination, a failure to read our historical co-ordinates correctly and usefully and to move to a bigger construct, a bigger picture of who we are and what we can be. That's the job of political leadership.

Their timidity not only diminishes their own horizon, it is a drag on the rest of us. The country always has to make its progress despite them. These people never help. They always have got to be dragged along, and they will accept a new norm only when someone else has struggled to put it into place.

But the fact is, this view will not win. It cannot win because it has no policy framework to it - and deep in their tiny, timorous hearts they know it. The undertaking is simply too big for them.

That is why you get all this thrashing around in the press. It's babble, because at the heart of their wrong-headed campaign is an attempt to contain and censor the human spirit, to muffle, muzzle and vitiate it.


What great transformation are you after? A Rinascimento (or, to use the coarse french, renaissance)? A civil war? The renewed production of the Bolwell? What?

Australian history is the history of this nation. It is not make believe. And it is not small. It is a vibrant weird history of Aboriginals, convicts, dreadful snobs, Irish, wogs galore, huge distances, the Bungle Bungles, beaches, pride, courage, lamingtons and love. As is. Without embellishment. And as for ‘limited faith’ well, what can you say of a paragraph that ends with ‘political leadership’. Jeez. Which is it? Are we all to participate in the great transformation? Or are we simply to be led to it? Hmmmm? Honestly.

Their exclusiveness, whether we are talking about White Australia in the past or boat people now, relies on constructing arbitrary and parochial distinctions between the civic and the human community. Who is in, and who is out. Who is owed possession. Who has rights.

What is the common policy between the le Pens, the Hansons and the Howards? It is citizenship - and it has always been so with these people. Who is in, and who is out. Wolfgang Kaspar, writing in Quadrant, was brazen enough to write about the "frictional costs of Australian settlement of Muslims". This is an example of the new fascism.

Rather than celebrate the successful multiculturalisation of Australia, they seek to shear people off and play on old prejudices by the use of implicitly negative phrases such as "for all of us", when they really mean "for some of us".

Good grief. What can you say to this? Are we not to give a shit about who we are? Does “us” mean nothing at all? Earlier we needed to stop being ambivalent about ourselves. Now it is bad to be too sure about who we are. And apparently in this multicultural country, it is only okay to celebrate wogs, but it is verboten to actual see them, hear them and understand their contribution, good bad or indifferent in the country as a whole. Who’s being exclusive and cocooned now? And whatever you do, don’t mention the Muslims, ya fascist.

Fer Chrissakes. We have mentioned the Italians and Greeks with their cash-money no taxes society, we have mentioned the Chinese with their Triad violence, the Vietnamese with their gangland drug running, the Pacific Islanders with their violence full stop. What the fuck is so fragile about multiculturalism that we cannot raise matters that matter? There is nothing fragile about wogs. It is so typical of a Labour man to imagine wogs need his protection. Thankyou but no thankyou.

And the Le Pen thing is just a cheap shot. Pym Fortuyn. Got a problem with him RIP? Get. Far. Away.

This is a government that talks in code. John Howard does not understand that base motivations run through a community and a polity like a virus, that these things are poison to the nation's soul. They are part of an anti-enlightenment. I think he has re-calibrated Australia's moral compass, where due north is only for the elites, whatever they are.

Blunt, huh? Gotta watch those Aussies. Just a pack of racist fascists pretending to be egalitarian hard workers. Even the wogs. Spending night and day out at Woomera and at church meetings taunting unauthorised entrants. Oh yeah. That is us.

The contempt in that statement, the dripping loathing his countrymen is just awful. Damn them for electing Howard.

:: WB 4:25 p.m. [link+] ::
Part 3:

A national leader should always be searching for the threads of gold in a community, nurturing and bringing them out and focusing on the best instincts - running with the human spirit and not punishing it.

A growing public morality and probity based on notions of charity and human regard should not be traduced by slurs such as "political correctness", with the implicit support for an incorrectness.

It takes a long time to build institutions and new norms of behaviour and new acceptances of protocols in any country. To build them and then have them traduced is a terrible thing.

Oh dear. It is not incorrect to call wanking insufferable political correctness out for what it is. We are robust enough to deal with all this. I have written before that we are in grams and millimetre territory – it should be possible to measure the good of political correctness – no sacking a guy just because he is a Muslim – to the bad of it – never noticing the fact that Muslim communities in Oz aren’t fitting in altogether well in Lakemba.

And as for that last line, well it reeks of sadness over losing the 1996 election and the suggestion, the code here is that Howard has ruined Oz by dismantling all Labour’s good work. He has not. We have not gone backwards.

Those who want to celebrate only our European past, rejoicing in its prejudices, and who want us to be exclusive and cocooned and who employ division and ridicule in their quest, must lose.

Must lose. Again. Simply must.

This is reminding me of a speech I attended which Keating gave to a pro republic dinner before the 96 election. And it is about now I am feeling bad about my language in this post because at that speech, as in this speech, he is stridently calling like minds to the battle. And they weren’t there then. He was terribly mistaken about Australians then.

Many people are dispirited by this period, and they think that somehow the Andrew Bolts and the Paddy McGuinnesses and the Frank Devines, all these people, have somehow got the upper hand. But they will simply be a smudge in history.

What have they put into place that is enduring, which makes the heart skip a beat? Nothing. And, in the end, there will be no punctuation mark in our annals of history from their efforts, because the game is too big for them.

Gosh. I’ll bet the crowd applauded these slurs. Neither Bolt nor Devine and certainly not McGuiness is about to desalinate the Murray but give them a break, they are just journos. With a point of view. Call them a smudge. Guess that makes me a smudge too. Awful Keating snobbery here. Bad bad.

This is why those of a progressive mind shouldn't despair so much, because, arid as this period is, in the end these people have made no headway.

True words – you can’t make headway with a group that has circled the wagons and is admitting to waiting out this ‘arid period’ till all we right wingers simply die.

Always hitting them will be all these questions: Who are we? Can we borrow the monarch of another country perpetually? Can we go to the region and say we've turned over a new leaf but, by the way, we have never got to a proper basis of reconciliation with our indigenes? How do we find our security in the region? How do we make our multiculturalism work better? How do we make everyone feel as though they belong, that the place truly is for all of us?

These questions remain on the agenda, unsatisfied, unattended. But they are still sitting there.

These are good questions. And they are getting addressed in the pubs and on the footpaths as Keating identified. But the progressives do not like the answers. They do not even like the people who are giving the answers – other Australians with a non-left point of view. And they do not like the other questions that are now getting raised:

Who the hell are they? Why do they think their compatriots are all stupid? Why do they shit themselves about how the region feels about our Aboriginals? How can multiculturalism work better when they always want to treat wogs like victims?

Urgh. Basta on this one. That is a way lot of typey typey. But the papers this weekend were a rich vein of madness warranting some close wog scrunity.

:: WB 4:23 p.m. [link+] ::

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