Whenever our nation is in crisis we yearn for the good old days when threats like this did not happen. Whenever we avoid a crisis we say it is because we honoured old traditions that were certain to keep us safe. Of course, as we all know, there has never been any such things as good old days, nor could we revive them even if there were. We just enjoy a bit of nostalgia here and there. Continue reading “TONY ABBOTT AND THE LONG SEARCH FOR YESTERDAY”
Creating a Union of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands
In the 1890s, when the Federation of Australian States was being fervently debated, there were seven negotiating parties at the table — five States on the Continent, plus Tasmania and New Zealand.
Just before referendums were held to determine whether the grand venture would go ahead, New Zealand withdrew. Their stated reason was that Australia was experiencing a major economic recession brought on by the bank collapses of 1893, combined with the worst drought of the century. New Zealand had avoided both of those disasters and was motivated to take the short term view that it would be wise to pull out. In hindsight, it was a bad decision.
So, Federation proceeded without them. Yet, the provision remains in the Constitution for them to change their minds at some time — but it is an option that has never been taken up. Continue reading “The Commonwealth of The South Pacific”
The first step in answering this question will be for us to decide that we do want Indonesia to be an integral part of our world. Nothing in our national body language to date conveys a genuine desire for this to happen.
For example, we can take a look at the vexed issue of boat people. On every occasion that an Australian politician declares that he or she will ‘turn back’ the refugee boats and point them in the direction from which they came, we offend the Indonesian nation, as the refugees are not their citizens and the people smugglers are a criminal element of their population that they do not condone.
It is to our shame that the smugglers are often supported by the Australian underworld.