Saturday salon 13/1

I’m posting early, because I’m heading out to Dulacca today, returning next Tuesday. I’m not expecting to be online.

1. Cryptocurrency crash

Bitcoin and just about every other cryptocurrency has taken a dive. There’s more at the ABC. Falls have been 20 per cent for Bitcoin and more than 40 per cent for some of the others.

Here’s an explainer on what’s behind the Bitcoin mania.

This is helpful:

    I should emphasize that the algorithms used to generate Bitcoins are pointless. They serve no useful purpose. To some partisans, that’s a good thing, because if they were tied to some useful purpose, that might confer some intrinsic value upon the currency; best to let its value float freely, limited only by the human imagination.

This is horrible:

    According to some estimates, Bitcoin’s power use already may equal 3 million US homes, topping the individual consumption of 159 countries.

John D sent me this link:

Bitcoin uses more power than Serbia – the environmental cost of cryptocurrencies.

The current scare is said to be because South Korea is thinking of banning it. Seems everyone should!

2. Most don’t care when Australia Day is held

It seems only yesterday that we were talking about when Australia Day should be held. They say time goes fast when you are having fun, but perhaps it’s because I’m old and it’s all spinning so fast that I will soon be thrown off.

Any way a new poll shows that 84 per cent think it is important the country has a national day of celebration.

    But 56 per cent say they don’t mind when the day occurs, challenging the notion that Australians see January 26 as sacred or untouchable.

Some 37 per cent realise the date is offensive to many Indigenous people because it represents the beginning of the dispossession and violence of British colonisation.

Sooner or later we’ll do it. Mark Latham is heading up a Save Australia Day campaign, so that should help push things along. Cory Bernadi is behaving like a meat chop. Powderfinger are saying that they don’t want to be on his play list, not that he can’t use them. Bernadi has hit out accusing pop stars of plagiarism and drug use, as though that disqualifies them from expressing an opinion.

John D sent me this, but we don’t know where he got it from:

    “Jan 26 was the day the English established an offshore detention center in the Pacific forging a tradition that we still follow today.”

3. Milkshake duck

“Milkshake duck” has been selected by Macquarie Dictionary as their word of the year. I think most have never heard of it, but it means:

    “a person who is initially viewed positively by the media but is then discovered to have something questionable about them”

Personally I think they’ve jumped the shark.

148 thoughts on “Saturday salon 13/1”

  1. 20/1 ?

    Meanwhile, across the dutch, Ms Ahern is pregnant.

    Not deliberately barren, it would seem.

  2. Ahem


    Let us watch to see how the South Pacific western democracy’s Aotearoa Patriarchy deals with that.

    Apologies to all the Ms Aherns who are also pregnant. No disrespect intended. Just cos you aren’t PM.

  3. I chatted with one of the Lads I work with about Australia Day being on the 26th January, his heritage it 50/50 Abo/TI.
    He said there wasn’t anyone he knew in the ” Darky Mob that gave a shit ” ( his words ).
    He said a big BBQ at a local beach park was the norm for his extended family and friends.

    He’s not very political at all but reckons that green bloke should stop speaking for Darkies, they can speak for themselves.

  4. Numbers of indigenous people I know certainly regard the location of Australia Day on the 26th as a significant issue

  5. Congratulations jumpy to your ingenious piece of social research. Could you tell me the margin of error for your results with a sample of 1. Or if you are a betting man what are your odds.

    ABS figures for 2016 census gives a number of close to 650’000 self identified Australian Indigenous peole. TAI sampled 1417 according to jumpy. Given sample size and the questions, I don’t know how good your stats skills are, but me I would be confident their margin of error on their result would be below 5% and very disappointed if higher than 10%.

    If you want to start a right wing left wing pissing contest, go somewhere else. I have had enough of unsubstantiated and unreasonable arguments on the rest of social media.. Just because some people can not deal with the idea to walk in some others shoes and that there are sensitivities and injustices that need to be addressed. It was the same with Gay marrige. What a drama that was – for what? And now, has the sky fallen in? What gets me is that the most who are stuck on their Australia Day don’t even know it’s historical significance.

    Now go on and call me a leftard filthy greenie snowflake, I am used to it.

  6. Jumpy: Cannot understand why you want to celebrate the day the English took some land from the local Aborigines to set up an offshore detention center in NSW?
    Also cannot understand why we are sending people overseas to offshore detention centers when NSW had already been set up to be one.

  7. Jumpy: The angry public support for keeping Australia Day by people like Barnaby Joyce reinforced the idea that there is a lot of hostility out there towards Aborigines and their feelings.
    The disgraceful attacks against Victoria’s first female Aboriginal MP for having the hide to want Australia day moved reinforces this impression it would be good to move the date sooner than later.
    From a practical point of view having Aus day close to a bunch of holidays and, even worse in the first week back at school for Qld doesn’t make sense. It should be moved to another part of the year when there is a shortage of public holidays. Wife thinks sometime in July makes more sense.

  8. The events of the 26th January, 1788, and afterwards did happen – and all the wishing in the world can’t ever make them unhappen, no matter what the Neo-Puritans bullies and show-offs desire.

    The important thing is, what do we do with that anniversary?

    I think both boozy triumphalism and self-flagellation are destructive wastes of time.

    That anniversary marks the permanent meeting of two very different and very successful cultures. So, let’s remember all of that : the good as well as the bad, the strange and the familiar, the happiness and the cruelty, the wonder as well as the neglect, the progress as well as the neglect. Let’s put the coolamin, the woomera and the returning boomerang on as prominent a display as the Eureka flag, the surveyors peg and the cross-cut saw. 26th January is as much the Aborigines’ day as it is the white fellas’ day or anyone else’s day.

    The song for the day? “We Are One” of course. And maybe that should be our National Anthem too.

  9. I also agree with GB’s sentiments.
    But as a sandgroper I can’t see the relevance of January 26.
    That is the anniversary of the day Arthur Phillip “took possession” of the eastern seaboard of what was not yet Australia (New Holland anyone?).
    He ignored completely the western third of the continent.
    Like Massa Jumpy’s Darkies I (and, I suspect, a lot of Aussies) don’t give a shit about Australia Day. In my case because it’s really NSW Day, and for most because it’s just another day off.
    Let’s have a non-binding postal survey to settle the date.

  10. For me it’s celebrating being Australian today.
    I put behind me the fact that some of my ancestors were not only dispossessed but removed from their Land and forced into slavery.
    But it was the date of a beginning as well as an end.
    Funny how those two go together.

  11. Zoot:
    Hey, how about commemorating or celebrating 3rd June, 1629, when the Dutch ship, Batavia, was wrecked off the Western Australia coast? That’s 158 and a bit years before the English prison fleet turned up in what became known as Botany Bay. Mind you, that wasn’t the real First Contact: that would have been in ancient times with the Melanesian bow-and-arrow wielders were driven back, or the Polynesians who missed out on being wrecked on the Great Barrier Reef but didn’t make a permanent beachhead here. Mind you, the 16th Century Macassan trepang fishermen and the crew of the Portuguese “mahogany ship” wrecked on the Victorian coast were there quite a long time before the English cheap slaves and their overseers arrived. Then there was the 1606 arrival of the Dutch ship, Duyfken, up on the Peninsula – however, the powers-that-be would need a lot of convincing before they made that anniversary a day to celebrate multiculturalism and understanding – besides, that didn’t happen in Western Australia.

    No. It looks like the 3rd June, 1629, is the most likely rival to 26th January, 1788, as the true date of the founding of Australia – besides, it would keep the Western Australians happy.

  12. The nation of Australia came into existence on January 1, 1901.
    Which seems to me a much more appropriate date to celebrate what our nation has become and meditate on what it can become in the future.
    But that’s just me.

  13. Zoot: 1st January? No way! That’s the anniversary of the cunning and treacherous diversion of a united Australia from its path to full sovereignty and genuine independence. How I do envy the Norwegians for what they achieved on 7th June, 1905 and confirmed on 13th August that year – and all we got here was the booby prize.
    All the scary stories of what a terrible place an independent Australia would have been like were nothing but pure garbage. Who knows but we may have stayed out of the Great War or else entered it under less punitive conditions. We may have had mutually beneficial reconciliation with Australian Aborigines by the ‘Twenties as well as a Melbourne to Darwin railway as well as the Trans Australian railway. It is amazing what an energetic people can do once the colonial shackles are removed.

  14. If you say so Graham.
    I never realised there was a united Australia before 1901. Thank you for correcting my misconception.
    I’m also intrigued that the only dates you consider suitable to mark the foundation of “Australia” are those when Europeans first arrived in Terra Australis or New Holland (your comment at 8:25 pm).
    If we mark it with the date the first group of humans travelled beyond their horizon to settle what we now call Australia we can literally choose any day of the year we like.

  15. I like the idea of Australia day being the day when the 1967 constitutional referendum was passed and Aus no longer had a racist constitution that discriminated against Aborigines. The date has a positive message for both Aborigines and the rest of us..

  16. How about the date of the Rum Rebellion that ousted a corrupt, overbearing government ?

    Once again specific to NSW.
    For corruption and ousting of governments I thought you, of all people, would have preferred November 11, 1975.

  17. 1964

    The Australian Natives’ Association prompted the formation in Melbourne of an Australia Day Celebrations Committee (later known as the Australia Day Council) to educate the public about the significance of Australia Day. Similar bodies emerged in the other states, which in rotation, acted as the Federal Australia Day Council.

    Celebration Committee.

  18. Na zoot, Australians though Whitlam sucked as proven in the subsequent election.
    If you’re a fan of Democracy that is, I can’t tell.

  19. My mistake ” elections ” plural, there were two in which the people of the day, living under his rule, rejected him.

    But I’m gussing his trashing the economy can be put down to the ” unlucky ” pattern of ALP governance.


  20. Goodnight all, school night an all.
    Looking into the black market as a share of GDP, but it’s not counted. Fascinating stuff, up to 40% in some places. The market will find a way.

  21. Jumpy: Gough had to deal with the OPEC crisis in case you forgot. The OPEC crisis caused problems world wide. Frazer got thrown out because he and Howard couldn’t handle stagflation. It took Bob Hawke and his skills at getting unions on side to fix stagflation.
    The big difference is that Gough actually changed so many things we take for granted these days. What durable changes to Frazer make?

  22. I think we need an Australia wide treaty before we have a national day. First a treaty, then changes to the constitution, then a national day (I’m not sure that we need a national day, but if we must have one, perhaps it could commemorate the day we sign a treaty). Everything else is a compromise.

  23. Val:
    Several similar and beneficial treaties, please, because Aborigines are nowadays more diverse than in historic times and each type or group of Aborigines has different needs and ambitions. However, how do we prevent the land-restealers, the do-badders , the crypto-racists, the entrepreneurial lawyers and every other scoundrel shoving their agenda into the whole issue and inflicting more harm with a botched collection of so-called treaties? We have to be pretty brisk too – we have shilly-shallied for so long that the song, “Treaty Now”, is probably classed as Classical Music these days.

    Zoot (11:36pm Friday):
    Hey, fair go. I did mention non-Europeans: Polynesians and Melanesians – just didn’t have exact dates – and wouldn’t it be funny if one date happened to be 26th. January, 788AD?

    Apart from the shameful exclusion of Aborigines, Pacific Islanders and Asiatics resident here, Australlia was, by 1st January, 1901, a socially and culturally united country – the dodgy pooliticians, the uneminent lawyers and the “more-English-than-the-English” toadies who caused the semi-constitution and that monkey-cage pretending to be a parliament, they were a long long way behind public sentiment.
    Still, I suppose 1st January, 1901, could be a contender as it marked the first anniversary of the Battle of Sunnyside in the South African War, one in which so many brave Australians fell whilst serving the British Empire.

    Didn’t you like3rd June, 1629? Aw, gee, thought you would like it because the events that followed it seemed to typify the way major businesses in Australia would behave over three centuries later. The ignoble start of an enduring tradition.

    John Davidson:
    Really do wish I could go along with you on proclaiming the 1967 referendum date as our national day – but given the appalling lack of progress and the needless loss of life since that day of great hope, I think it ranks with Anzac Day as our second day of national sorrow and solemn reflection. Maybe in another half century …..


  24. Graham, there are many local treaties being negotiated, which is very positive. However we can also have a national one. My understanding is that tjurkurrpa or Dreaming (as we white people call it) or the many other names for Indigenous sprituality/law was connected across the continent, so I’m sure we can have a treaty across the continent.

  25. I don’t see any logical difficulty about a treaty. Other countries have done it with diverse indigenous populations.

    Have a listen to Linda Burney for an intelligent comment talking to Patricia Karvelas. She suggests NAIDOC Week in the beginning of July to celebrate the beginning of human settlement on the continent 65,000 years ago. Can’t get more inclusive than that!

  26. I’m back a day early, but got nothing done tonight. I was offline, but my bro had is smart phone on while I was driving between Dalby and Toowoomba.

    To be honest I groaned when he read out Jumpy’s first comment, which we both thought was disrespectful.

    I don’t think we’ll understand who we are and where we are until we respectfully recognise the people the Brits pushed aside when they set up a penal colony here. The one day we can’t have a national celebration is 26 January.

    As I said, we’ll get there sooner or later.

  27. Looking across the ‘dutch’ they have Waitangi Day on February 6 as their National Day. They have a female Prime Minister who announced her pregnancy with a cheer going through the country and a sensible conservative opposition leader, saying she shouldn’t be held to higher standards just because of her role, and ought to be treated graciously as she acclimatises to motherhood.
    “I hope she gets the space to be able to do some of the things other people do, like turn up to work tired and not get a hard time for it,”

    Oh and btw way ‘Space is open for business’: NZ start-up successfully launches rocket.

    Meanwhile, Xinhua reports

    “Over the decade since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), the wealth of Australian billionaires has increased by almost 140 percent to a total of 115.4 billion AUD (92.1 billion U.S. dollars) last year.
    “Yet over the same time, the average wages of ordinary Australians have increased by just 36 percent and average household wealth grew by 12 percent.
    “The richest 1 percent of Australians continue to own more wealth than the bottom 70 percent of Australians combined. While everyday Australians are struggling more and more to get by, the wealthiest groups have grown richer and richer.”

    Also reported today

    *People phoning (Centrelink) about disability, sickness or carers payments waited on average 28 minutes and 17 seconds — more than three minutes longer than the previous year.
    *People calling employment hotlines were typically on hold for 30 minutes and 21 seconds — up by about five minutes.
    *Young people and students dialling Centrelink waited on average 31 minutes and 15 seconds — an increase of nearly six minutes.

    How about we celebrate on the 26th the incoming business tax break and practice our social underarm bowling, which we are so fond of, while we dress the place and ourselves with made in China blue, red and white merchandise, then get on the piss to cope with the ongoing heatwave and cross fingers the power stays on.

    Onya Australia – the lucky country!

  28. Good to see you back Brian, re your:
    “I don’t think we’ll understand who we are and where we are until we respectfully recognise the people the Brits pushed aside when they set up a penal colony here. The one day we can’t have a national celebration is 26 January.”

    The tragedy is, we keep on perpetuating the myth of Australia as a fair and equal Nation, while we continue to marginalise and dispossess all kind of people not just indigenous. We continue with the division between ‘us and them’, the racial dog whistle, the poofter bashing, the belittling of women, even dispossessing farmers while digging up and soiling some of our best land, piss water and other natural resources and people depending on it in the wind. Neoliberal corporatism on steroids has replace Colonialism, we still handing out the trinkets to the ‘natives’ while rape and pillage of the country goes on.

    What chance have we got for Australians to realise what is going on in this country, when most people don’t know why Australia Day is held on January 26. And it is not just the the TAI research which reports: “Only 38% correctly identified the events of that day as the First Fleet landing at Sydney Cove” . Enter any discussion on social media and the ignorance of basic events in Australian history is just astonishing. How patriotic is it to continue to divide a nation not just between black and white, but you name it, between sexes, races, socio economic background, religion and so on. The Blue vs Maroon may has its place in sport but in a nation as diverse as ours the divisive sledging and underarm bowling practices, to win at all cost, has no place. That sort of populism not only detracts from the pressing issues we are facing but it seriously handicaps our Nations future.

    As my Friend and Australian Historian Timothy Bottoms said in the conclusion of his address to the annual Myall Creek massacre commemoration, where descendants of victims and killers unite in an act of mutual apology and forgiveness:

    Recognising the truth of our history, from the frontier wars, ugly violence and rape, to the dictatorial control of the 20th century concentration camps, euphemistically called missions and reserves, we can more honestly acknowledge these, as well as the aspects of which, we can more readily, be proud.

    This is what a 21st century Australia has to synthesise and honestly come to terms with.

    It is essential as contemporary Australians that we acknowledge that we are not responsible for what happened on our colonial frontier, but we are responsible for not acknowledging what happened. If we do not, our integrity as a nation is flawed and we are shamed as a people for perpetuating a lie – ‘Lest We Forget’.

  29. Great comments, Ootz.

    I have to run, out to work, but I’ve just heard a really horrific hour on local radio addressing the topic of bullying, which is culturally endemic. Will find the link tonight.

    No act of bullying can be resolved until the bully sees the need for restitution and is prepared to do just about anything to make things right.

    I say “just about” because we don’t want the victim seeking something unreasonable and effectively seeking revenge.

  30. Brian

    To be honest I groaned when he read out Jumpy’s first comment, which we both thought was disrespectful.

    Really ?. To whom did your brother and yourself think my Indigenous friend was being disrespectful too ?

    I don’t think we’ll understand who we are and where we are until we respectfully recognise the people the Brits pushed aside when they set up a penal colony here.

    Well, we’ve got 15 March – National Close the Gap Day, 26 May – National Sorry Day, 27 May to 3 June – National Reconciliation Week, 8 to 15 July NAIDOC Week, 4 August National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day plus 9 August International Day of the Worlds Indigenous Peoples.
    Plenty of recognition there I’d say.

    The one day we can’t have a national celebration is 26 January.

    Even The Australia Institutes dodgy online poll finds most folk can’t be upset about the 26th Jan because they don’t know its significance.

    Anyway, I’ll take the words of my trusted Indigenous friend ( that is part of a huge Indigenous network ) that is so apolitical he’s not enrolled to vote over an opposition Minister with a strategy to push and couldn’t disagree with her cabinet even if she wanted to.

  31. I am mortified to find that my comment at 8:57 pm, January 20, 2018 is in error. Gruebleen (in a comment at Loon Pond) explains via this lightly edited extract:

    1 January 1901 was merely the ‘federation’ of multiple largely self governing dominions (aka ‘states’) under an overarching ‘federal dominion’.

    We didn’t even have such basic things as ‘citizens’ until Ben Chifley pushed through the Nationality and Citizenship Act 1948, which came into force on 26 January 1949.

    But even that doesn’t make for an ‘Australia Day’ because the various dominions (including the ‘federal’ one) were still subject to laws made by the British Parliament.

    It wasn’t until the joint Australia and UK ‘Australia Act’ legislation finally took effect at 0500 GMT (1600 AEST) on the 3rd of March 1986.

    Note: “The ceremony was presided over by the Australian Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, to whom Elizabeth presented the signed copy of the proclamation, along with the Assent original of the UK Act.”

    So, 3rd of March 1986 was when the Australian nation finally came into existence in place of the colonial dominion that was until then still under legislative control by the UK

  32. Ootz

    I believe those NZers across the dutch have Waitangi Day to celebrate a Treaty signed between Maori leaders and representatives of Queen Victoria, in 1840.

    Whatever its faults, there was a founding treaty and many aspects of recognition which developed later, e.g. land and fishing rights, traditional villages and sacred sites recognised, reserved Parliamentary seats, and so forth.

    The Maori arrived from Greater Polynesia around 1300AD I think. Relatively newcomers. According to a display in Te Papa (national museum) in Wellington, DNA samples show that the Maori ancestors lived long ago in a few valleys on the island of Taiwan.

    Sorry, Thor Heyerdhal: just because it is possible to sail a raft from Sth America to Tahiti, that doesn’t prove that the Polynesians came from Peru or Chile.

  33. Val:
    Glad to hear there are local initiatives. At least that is happening faster than the simple -very simple – matter of including Aborigines in the Preamble to The Constitution. Geez, any of us could have done that in a single night on just one cup of coffee..

    All you good people:
    How do we involve everyone – Aborigines, descendants of the White Slaves, descendants of their Mastas, descendants of migrants and recent migrants – in commemorating our founding (1788 AND circa 65 000 BC), celebrating the good things in our life and our history and also reflecting on bad things in our life and history?

    That was the easy question – now for the tough one …..

    How do we do this without rewarding every grant plunderer,
    mischief-maker, evil-doer and every other scoundrel who profits by hindering genuine reconciliation and by stirring up hatred?

    Yes. Good comments indeed.

  34. For the record, here is the Uluru Statement from the Heart and here is a response to the Turnbull government’s rejection – an “act of political bastardry”.

    The Uluru statement asks for, firstly, a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution, and secondly:

    a Makarrata Commission to supervise a process of agreement-making between governments and First Nations and truth-telling about our history.

    Given the reaction of the rednecks of the right, I’d like to think a Labor government would go down the path any way. neither strictly needs a change to the constitution. Legislating an ATSIC-like body would allow us to work out in practice a model to go forward with which could then be ratified in the Constitution.

    A treaty could come later again, but if we walk down the path of the Uluru statement with good will I think at that stage we could have a new look at a national day.

    locating it in NAIDOC week would make the inclusion of indigenous peoples unambiguous.

    To answer Graham’s concerns, and taking account of what Zoot said, I would not place any undue emphasis 1901 and Federation. I would seek to inclusively celebrate who we are now, which is the only place in time we can ever be, and look towards the future. The past can be remembered in a manner of our choosing, honestly but in a way that contributes to the present and future.

  35. Jumpy you were being disrespectful, not your indigenous friend.

    You took one example and suggested it invalidated a survey with a professional sampling method, upon which you then sprinkled dreck, typically knowing better than the professionals in the field, when it suits you.

    Back in the 1970s when I was doing a bit of educational sociology I was introduced to a concept of the ‘internalisation of ruling-class values’. So you work it out, but your friend does not speak for anyone other than himself.

  36. My understanding is that tjurkurrpa or Dreaming (as we white people call it) or the many other names for Indigenous sprituality/law was connected across the continent, so I’m sure we can have a treaty across the continent.

    Thank you Val
    <3 <3 Happy Bama Bulmba Day to you too 😀 😀

    Ngandu mayin! Be joy filled . Badabagay! To the top!
    Nyurramba mamingalndjirrin! Love each other! Guda:guda:. Forever. Nganydji garrang nyiwul-mu. We come from one. Bulurrum. From Bulurru the Storywaters. Nganydji bibunbay Gudjugudju-barra. We are the children of Bulurru, Gadja Bama-djada. You fellow, Me fellow – together!
    (I wish to pay my respect to those who came before me here on this land and our Nation, as well as those who will follow me)

    Every Nations has skeletons in the closets, they can be festering sore spots or they can be a source of great healing, profound learning and transformational opportunities. It would be a great loss if we would ignore the blood that was lost by convicts and first nations at the birth of modern Australia and not learn from that lesson we paid a heavy price. There got to be a better way to be more civilised with each other, less divisive, more understanding and responsible.

  37. BTW

    Looks like a Trans Pacific trade deal is on the cards without USA.

    Regardless of its merits I take heart. International diplomacy continues and cannot be vetoed by Pres Trump.

    Step around him when necessary. Don’t be caught dazzled in the headlights like a panicking rabbit.

    Show some spine. Cooperation can still work.

  38. Ootz, my point about the present is that while we can’t change what happened in the past we can choose what we learn from it and use for the benefit of all in the future.

    I’d concur with your last para.

  39. Another excellent article on the issues surrounding January 26.
    It details the range of positions held by our first nation people. But I would also note that the Uluru Statement demonstrates they are more than capable of compromise and consensus.
    As always, it’s the Whitefellas blocking progress.

  40. Few Days ago John Hewson wrote a notable OP on Trump. He starts thus:

    Of course, there is a huge academic literature on the appropriate definitions to be used in discussing the issues of race and ethnicity, but most of this is irrelevant to the point in the sense that most people know and can recognise racism when they experience it, hear it, or read about it. Sometimes its quite overt, sometimes a mere “nod and wink”, but few miss the racist-based message.

    Love him or hate him, Jeff Kenneth has the reputation as “The Straight-Talker”:

    “And you know Peter Dutton was a policeman. If he was a policeman, he would not be making those comments. So he’s gone from being a policeman with that training and that discipline to being a politician, which is just to take a cheap political potshot at whatever you can, so it’s not helpful,” Mr Kennett told Sky News on Thursday night.

    “You’ve got actually try and bring people together rather than simply divide them.”

    In other news, RIP Hugh Masekela, the man who got Louis Armstrong’s trumpet , one of the first to introduce African music to the world and a lover of his native tongues. His own rendition of his famous “Stimela” is unforgettably striking, you’ll never look at a steam train the same again.

    Sala hantle moea o moholo, u re file thabo le pululelo.
    Farewell creative spirit, you brought us joy and inspiration

  41. Zoot, I think your link for Jumpy covers the matter completely.

    There is so much that should be said about this.

  42. Aborigines were protesting about Australia Day in 1938. One quote caught my eye:

    The 150th anniversary of the landing of the First Fleet in Australia had for others been a time to celebrate — there was a parade and a re-enactment of the landing, with Aboriginal men brought in from a remote area to assist in the re-enactment after Sydney residents refused to participate.

    My grandfather, Sir Douglas Nicholls, along with our Uncle William Cooper and about 100 other fellow Indigenous protesters, had to wait patiently for the festivities to pass before they were allowed to march.
    One of the first civil rights protests by Indigenous people against their callous and discriminatory treatment in Australia, the gathering was not allowed to enter via the front door when they arrived at the Australian Hall in Elizabeth Street — the protesters were instead told to enter through the back.

    Some progress has been made.

  43. ” 70% of Australians believe Australia Day should be celebrated on 26 January, only 11% believe the date should be moved. ”

    ” 87% of Australians are proud to be an Australian, only 3% are not ”

    Is this a professional sampling method by professionals in the field, or do we sprinkle dreck on it ?

  44. In general, I am a bit skeptical about pursuing symbolic gestures on Aboriginal issues. My take is that the effort may be better spent on more tangible things. Equally important, the demand for symbolic gestures from the non-Aboriginal population can be a self inflicted put down.
    The message can be something like: “We can’t do do …… unless someone other than us does……” Sometimes this is true but in many areas like health and education the only people who really have the power to fix these things are the Aborigines themselves.
    However, when it comes to cutting the link between Australia day and invasion day the symbolism is important. It has become important in my mind for a number of reasons. Firstly, Australia day changed recently from an excuse for a public holiday when the LNP decided that the holiday had to be on 26 Jan instead of the nearest Monday. A very clear message that the LNP thought it was all about celebrating the invasion. To make matters worse they upped the celebration and allowed nationalistic yobbos wearing Australian flags to run loose.
    Then there has been the angry reaction of people like Barnaby who seem to be saying that Aborigines shouldn’t be complaining.
    I hope that 2018 is the last year Australia day is held on the 26 Jan. I have got no firm idea about a date but suggest it would be better if it were not linked to anything in Australia’s past or future history. Perhaps something like “second Monday in July” if this is more a more logical time for for a public holiday. A public holiday that celebrates what ids good about our diverse society?

  45. John, yesterday at 4:01pm is the link to all the questions.
    I’m not advocating any poll as evidence, I’d rather chat with folks I know and trust.
    The IPA seems closer to my findings.

    I thing the symbolism is trumping the practical on the Indigenous front.
    And the virtue signaling is over the top and does SFA.

  46. Thanks, Brian, for the Uluru Statement From The Heart.

    It’s a little bit long but it will do me as an Interim Preamble For The Australian Constitution. Interim, that is, from the 25th January, 2018 until 25th January, 2028..

    Surely, in that 120 months period, a more concise, elegant, strong and timeless Permanent Preamble For The Australian Constitution can be developed. We have the talented people – especially among young, educated Aborigines -, the will to do it and the need to do it.

    In the meantime, the Uluru Statement From The Heart will do me just fine – don’t know about the other 24 million though.

  47. Thank you Jumpy for bringing up research and not making any assumptions, that is a step forward and as such I congratulate you for making that step. With regards to your:

    I thing the symbolism is trumping the practical on the Indigenous front.
    And the virtue signaling is over the top and does SFA.

    Could I ask you, do you think the same about the Uluru statement, which was after all put together by a government commissioned and highly representative body of first nation people?

  48. Zoot that article from The Guardian was particularly impressive. It links to a number of other articles on the subject, including one, also by Calla Wahlquist – Map of massacres of Indigenous people reveals untold history of Australia, painted in blood.

    150 massacres have been identified. I heard commentary the other day that after Myall Creek settlers took good care to leave no evidence, and in many cases the police simply looked the other way.

    Today I heard three excellent segments on the issue on ABC RN.

    First The Minefield with Walled Aly and Scott Stevens, including later in the segment Gemma McKinnon, who is the Aboriginal HDR Fellow at the Law School of the University of New South Wales. Aly and Stevens ask Is There a Morally Credible Case for Not Changing the Date of Australia Day?

    They suggest that the argument is over, there is no case for retaining the 26th January, unless we change what the the day is about. Stevens said there is a case for having a day to acknowledge the great wrong committed which started on that day. As McKinnon says in an opinion piece:

    The date is synonymous with invasion – the beginning of mass slaughter, dispossession, genocide and land theft.

    The Religion and Ethics Report which today was on Australia Day, reconciliation and apostasy includes an interview with Cassandra Gibbs who runs a program “Let’s Talk” under the auspices of the Edmund Rice Foundation. The interview begins about 9 mins 30 secs into the program and lasts about 9 minutes.

    One of the things she said was that some Aborigines did not want to lose 26 January, because then we would all forget what happened on that day.

    She said much else, it’s worth a listen.

    Finally, Patricia Karvelas interviewed Ken Wyatt in “There is hurt”: Parliament’s first Aboriginal minister on Australia Day debate.

    Let’s just say that his views are incompatible with what Malcolm Turnbull said.

    I think we need to commit to a path of recognition, acknowledgement and restitution. This may well end in a treaty, but should begin with taking the Uluru Statement seriously.

    Then when sufficient healing has occurred we will know better what we want to mark and celebrate and how and when we want to do it.

    BTW we should also give Betty Windsor the flick as queen of Australia before we can claim to be a grown up country.

  49. Jumpy, I have no problem with you reporting what your Aboriginal mate said, but you put it forward as representative and essentially nixing ideas about changing Australia Day to a different date. He’s entitled to his views, and they are of interest. However, he doesn’t represent First Nations people generally.

    The Calla Wahlquist article zoot linked to says:

    Rod Little, a Yamatji and Wadjuk man and co-chair of the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples, supports changing the date.

    “We can’t undo history but the naming and the celebrating of us as a unified nation … the 26th isn’t that day,” Little says.
    It’s convenient to say Aboriginal people support Australia Day. But it’s not true.

    National Congress is a peak representative body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations. Initial responses to a survey of its members last week found that 83% supported changing the date and 50% said doing so was important for reconciliation.

    TBH Cassandra Gibbs says some Aboriginal people would rather talk about something else. There are various views held, which is why Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be consulted the I guess put to parliament and the First Nations Voice.

    As to your IPA survey, if it is accurate it does not mean that the majority are right.

  50. I had a quick look at the methodology section of the two researches published by TAI and IPA. One of them did publish the sample distribution of ‘political leaning’ the other did not, hence we don’t know if their sample was truly ‘representable’. More importantly, looking at how their questions were formulated and sequenced, one can get the drift of their null hypothesis, basically what they were fishing for. It would appear one is measuring basically the flag waving capacity of the nation the other looks at the nations knowledge about itself and social flexibility. Anyway you get the drift when you look at the general research focus of those two Think tanks.

    Patriotism is synonym with loyalty, nationalism, allegiance, chauvinism, flag-waving and public spirit, according to online Thesaurus. Under Fanatical Patriotism it lists fanaticism, jingoism, nationalism, narrowness, zealotry, bellicose and ethnocentricity. A famous quote goes “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” others were less complementary, such as Thoreau, “Patriotism is a maggot in their heads.” or Guy de Maupassant “patriotism is the egg from which wars are hatched.”

    There you go Geoff Miell, this is where conservative thinking is focusing on to deal with the massive challenges the fundamental shake up of our non sustainable lifestyle present.

  51. In shock, breaking news:

    Pope Francis lays out moral case against fake news, propaganda

    is currently a headline in Fairfax online.

    Pope opposes lying!!

    What next?

    Archbishop condemns stealing?
    Imam rejects rude gestures??
    Sunday school teacher says we should brush our teeth every day???

  52. Ootz

    Thank you for your tribute to Hugh Masekela.
    I went to read the lyrics of Stimela and agree: never will a distant train sound the same.

    For everyone, here they are:

    There is a train that comes from Namibia and Malawi
    there is a train that comes from Zambia and Zimbabwe,
    There is a train that comes from Angola and Mozambique,
    From Lesotho, from Botswana, from Swaziland,
    From all the hinterland of Southern and Central Africa.
    This train carries young and old, African men
    Who are conscripted to come and work on contract
    In the golden mineral mines of Johannesburg
    And its surrounding metropolis, sixteen hours or more a day
    For almost no pay.
    Deep, deep, deep down in the belly of the earth
    When they are digging and drilling that shiny mighty evasive stone,
    Or when they dish that mish mesh mush food
    into their iron plates with the iron shank.
    Or when they sit in their stinking, funky, filthy,
    Flea-ridden barracks and hostels.
    They think about the loved ones they may never see again
    Because they might have already been forcibly removed
    From where they last left them
    Or wantonly murdered in the dead of night
    By roving, marauding gangs of no particular origin,
    We are told.
    They think about their lands, their herds
    That were taken away from them
    With a gun, bomb, and the teargas, the gatling and the cannon.
    And when they hear that Choo-Choo train
    A-chugging, and a pumping, and a smoking, and a pushing, a pumping, a crying and a steaming and a chugging and a whooo whooo!
    They always cuss, and they curse the coal train,
    The coal train that brought them to Johannesburg. Whooo whooo!

    Cry, the beloved country.

  53. One thing is for sure, shovelling more and more dollar$ at Indigenous folk doesn’t do much at all,

    In 2015-16, total direct government expenditure on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians was estimated to be $33.4 billion, a real increase from $27.0 billion in 2008-09.
    • In 2015-16, the estimated direct expenditure per person was $44 886 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, around twice the rate for non-Indigenous Australians ($22 356); a similar ratio to previous years in this Report1. The higher per person expenditure (difference of $22 530) reflects the combined effects of:
    − greater intensity of service use ($14 349 or 63.7 per cent) — because of greater need, and because of the younger age profile of the population
    − higher cost of providing services ($8181 or 36.3 per cent) — for example, because of more remote locations, or because targeted services are provided in addition to mainstream services (for example, Indigenous liaison officers in hospitals)

    I recon the Governments and law treat everyone equally.

    Oh, and Brian, it wasn’t my IPA survey or IPAs, it was done by Research Now
    The AI survey was an in House thang, I would call it yours just because you presented it to the group.

  54. Who mentioned anything about money Jumpy? Or are you running out of decent arguments why we should not acknowledge indigenous concerns re Australia Day?

    But while we are at it with money, you probably want to brush the stolen wages under the table too.

    I am not surprised the the indigenous person you ‘surveyed’ gave you the answer you wanted. Why would he said the truth about his feelings on the issue with someone as one-sided and ethnocentric as your good self. What good would it have brought him to say otherwise, because you would not understand and would have only added insult to injury with arguments such as above re “shovelling money”.

  55. I recon the Governments and law treat everyone equally.

    Too right! It’s way past time we treated multinational companies like Jobstart recipients.
    But what’s that got to do with January 26th? Do I discern an embryonic Gish Gallop?

  56. Ootz, do I need for others to raise subjects on the open tread?
    I wouldn’t have thought so.

    You can mischaracterise me, imagine false senerios, embue invective and virtue signal all you want in your cyberbullshiting attempts.
    I’m awake the that Alinsky crap and won’t cower to your bullying efforts.

    How about just not trolling me and have a honest chat eh ?

  57. I’d like to raise the topic of popular songs of the forties and fifties.
    Who remembers “I’m a Lonely Little Petunia in an Onion Patch”? (punchline “And all I do is cry all day”)

  58. A small thought exercise.
    The War of Independence didn’t happen in America and the Poms didn’t need an alternative destination for their filth.
    Would Australia still be uncolonised ? (I doubt it. )
    If not, would the colonisers of the time, Spanish or Dutch been better for the Aboriginals given their record with other colonisations with respect to the indigenous populations ?

    ( unprovoked line of subject, hope Ootz doesn’t mind too much )

  59. zoot

    what about the sixties, “My boomerang won’t come back”?

    In the badlands of Australia,
    Many years ago,
    The chiefs of the Aboriginal tribes
    Were having a big pow-wow.

    [Oom yakka baywa, Oom yakka baywa]

    “We got a lot of trouble, Chief,
    On account of your son Mack.”
    “My son Mack,
    What’s wrong with him?”

    “My boomerang won’t come back!!!”

    No hurt feelings there, just a can-do attitude.

  60. Lol jumpy, the irony of you accusing me of virtue signalling. Me cyberbullshitting, just because you run out of reasonable arguments on the issue. Re “Alinsky crap”, have you been hanging around Breitbart for your political fear fix again? Lucifer – who me, just because I have read a few books, speak several languages fluent, because I can hold an argument in a debate, back it up with valid and reliable research, capable to analyse underlying issues in complex problem. Me an amoral revolutionary, you must be lost in your haze of fear.

    Honest chat, sure anytime, it is my preferred communication mode, you know cutting the crap getting to the point. So I go back my honest question above.

    I thing the symbolism is trumping the practical on the Indigenous front.
    And the virtue signaling is over the top and does SFA.

    Could I ask you ‘honestly’, do you think the same about the Uluru statement, which was after all put together by a government commissioned and highly representative body of first nation people?

  61. If not, would the colonisers of the time, Spanish or Dutch been better for the Aboriginals given their record with other colonisations with respect to the indigenous populations ?

    I appreciate your question Jumpy, it provides me with a excellent opportunity to illustrate that you don’t actually understand what the underlying issue is. So let me answer your above question by asking you what ever gives you the idea we should not question and address tragic incidents be cause someone else perpetrated them? That would be inconsistent, thats not me.

  62. Congratulations to quantum physicist Professor Michelle Yvonne Simmons, Australian of the Year.


    What more could we want?

  63. Ootz, lets referendum the recommendations of the Uluru ( Ayres Rock ) Commission, how about that ?
    Give you a platform to promote your collectivist tribal separatist divisions over my individualist equality and harmony.

    ( ps, never seen brietbart, that you bullshiting again to the mob. Sad. )

  64. Graham Bell @ 7:48 pm: I recently underwent an angiogram and the cardiologist explained that he no longer reached the heart via the femoral artery (entering at the groin) but he now entered through the wrist; a technique he learned on a visit to China. Apparently the Chinese are world leaders in such matters.
    Then there’s this. I would advise any potential Australian leaders to do a Rudd and brush up their Mandarin.

  65. What exactly is your heritage Ootz?
    Just because you want this personal.

    Me, I was born here. Couldn’t ask anyone’s permission, had no say in it.
    You ?

  66. Settle down, Mr J.

    Many of my friends were born overseas, and/or their parents were. Not a problem.

    Are you against all migration? If so, please ascertain your predominant (pre-Australian) ancestry and book your tickets back there. I hope the land of your ancestors is not currently war-torn or poor.


  67. Groin entry is what got us in this bl**dy mess in the first place zoot!

    Not very tasteful to raise that here. I hope His Grace the Archbishop doesn’t read your post.

  68. Johnathon Thurston thinks there is a need for a conversation about Australia day.

    Johnathan Thurston believes Australians need to be more informed about why the date of Australia Day is hurtful to Indigenous people.

    Thurston, 36, who is set to retire from rugby league as one of the sport’s greats after the upcoming season, also urged governments to make Indigenous affairs a priority after an “alarming” failure to meet Close The Gap targets over the past decade.

    Thurston said the country needs to “have a chat” about Australia Day.

    On the anniversary of the First Fleet of British ships arriving at Port Jackson in 1788, Australians get a public holiday to celebrate the country’s national day.

    There are calls to change the date of Australia Day to make it a celebration that is inclusive of the people who lived here before those ships arrived.

    For some Indigenous Australians, January 26 marks the day when their land was no longer only theirs and in the years since there have been several calls to stop marking the day with celebration but with “mourning and protest”.

    “It’s not just about the First Fleet, it’s about the stealing of the land, the misplacement of the stolen generation and the injustices that were done over the years,” Thurston said.

    Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said Johnathan Thurston was pointing out that some people don’t feel the date is inclusive of all Australians.

    “I think Australia Day does need to be inclusive of all Australians, and it is a conversation that people will need to have and it is good that he is raising that issue,”
    Cant argue with what Thurston said and Annastacias comment on what Thurston said.

  69. Mr A , of course I’m not arguing against all migration.
    I’m arguing white migrants being forced to migrate shouldn’t be vilified and their descendants shouldn’t be culpable.
    I’m arguing we are where we are, now, together and we don’t need dickheads stirring the pot.
    We certainly don’t need voluntery migrants doing that no matter how clever they think they are.
    And I’m as calm as a cucumber, don’t you worry about that.

  70. I’m arguing white migrants being forced to migrate shouldn’t be vilified and their descendants shouldn’t be culpable.

    Who is vilifying whom? Since when is acknowledging wrongs in history making the descendants culpable? What ever gave you the idea that YOU are the victim here?

    The only thing you are culpable of is rejecting the truth at all cost and blame everything under the sun for your cage being rattled by it.

    Oh, if only these pesky Abos would know their place again and the uppity wogs would piss off to where they came from, so you can wave your made in china plastic flag and wallow in the glory of the Empire in comfort.

    Mate, your display on here is the best argument to change the date if I have ever have seen one.

  71. John D, I was trying to ascertain the other day wether we actually have a Minister for science again or not, as I can’t keep up with the coal-ition’s pea and thimble trick on this. Remember the relaxed and comfortable old Howard days when the Australian Chief Scientist’s position was part-time and his One Religion is Enough speech putting science in it’s place.

  72. Mr J

    Joh B-P of blessed memory, Danish ancestry, born in NZ. Nobody accused him of massacring Maori.

    You have Venezuelan friends I believe. I bet you’ve never confronted them about the plunder and murder committed by the Conquistador Bastards.

    Steve Bracks has Lebanese ancestry: did we ask him to disavow all the crimes committed in Lebanon? If we did, I don’t recall it.

    Personally (sample size N = 1, N -1 = 0) I value Ootz’s contributions and am glad he chose Australia.

    Strike a light Mr J, get yer hand off it, fair dinkum, no wog-bashing here mate!! And ask Mr Katter about his Lebo and Abo heritage.

    The overseas foreign-born migrant known as Ambigulous

  73. Happy White Australia Day (TM zoot, 2018)

    Ummm just to clarify my “get yer hand off it”
    Ahhh it’s a figure of speech, like “Give it a rest!”

    Not implying in any way that Mr J starred in the cult film
    Onan The Barbarian.

    Never met him.
    Don’t know his hobbies, apart from fishing.
    Maybe he loves XXXX (kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss)?
    Maybe he likes the occasional [ahem] “smoking ceremony”??

    Chacun a son gout!! I reckon.

    Cheers, cobbers all.

  74. Good one John D …. STOP THE BOATS

    I am spending OSDD reading up history. After all according to the Australia Day council

    Australia Day, 26 January, is the day to reflect on what
    it means to be Australian, to celebrate contemporary
    Australia and to acknowledge our history.

    Looking at primary sources the flag rising was a low key event with just the Phillip and a few high ranking officer toasting King and country.

    “On the Evening of our Arrival (26th January 1788) The Governor & a Number of the Officers assembled on Shore where, they Displayed the British Flag and each Officer with a Heart, glowing with Loyalty drank his Majesty’s Health and Success to the Colony.”

    The actual official ceremony occurred on the 7th of February, when Phillip claimed half of the continent plus islands of the South Pacific as far as NZ.

    How dare the Kiwis celebrate the day of their treaty with their indigenous people as their Nation Day, rather than when they were ‘claimed’ by the British Crown.

  75. And why don’t they call it New Zealand Day ?
    Or would that be too inclusive of the filthy Pakeha ?

  76. In the spirit of inclusiveness and co-operation that underpins January 26, I’d be very appreciative if someone could explain the logic of Jumpy’s comment at 12:45 pm.

  77. Zoot (Thu. 8:37pm):
    (I) Chinese are now free to innovate – so they do.

    Australian innovators, on the other hand, are punished because they do whatever nobody else has done, “therefore(??)” they cannot demonstrate a “profit(??)” for their innovation. That’s why Australia is the Clever Country; it reely trooly is.

    (2) Nowadays, I urge any and every Australian to avoid learning Chinese like the plague . I busted my boiler for years reaching a very high level of Kuo Yu/ P’u T’ung Hua/Kuan Hua/ Mandarin Chinese/Hanyu and that was a complete waste of time, effort, money and resources. (And the sample size of Australians so affected is somewhat more than 1; your reserved seat in the public gallery at the Royal Commission Into Asian Studies And Asian Languages And Their Use By Australian Businesses is in the mail)

  78. J

    I think Waitangi is a place name. Suppose we had a treaty. Then it might be called The Sydney Treaty.

    In Aotearoa/New Zealand there is a basic understanding between Pakeha and Maori. Not ideal, but what ever is??

    Now we might argue whether the Treaty caused the basic understanding, or whether the Treaty was a result of basic goodwill.

    Isn’t it a reasonable suggestion that we might look to other former British colonies, to compare and contrast relations between Caucasian settlers and locals and other groups? For instance Aotearoa, Canada, Malaysia, Negara Singapura, Fiji, South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe.

    So much to learn…..

  79. Ootz (Thu. 8:01pm):
    My oath we should examine and discuss tragic events – if for no other reasons than to help prevent them happening again.

    However, the discussion must be on all aspects.

    For example: it is downright dishonest to discuss Blackbirding without mentioning its evil financial backers (yet the name “Townsville” persists unchanged) and the opportunistic island chiefs who used the white pirates as a convenient way of disposing with potential young rivals for their power.

    What I really abhor is the dishonest blame-shifting.

    For instance: None of those awful smelly Boagans of today took part in the massacres of Aborigines a century and more ago – so why blame them? ….. unless doing so protects the reputation and the patrimony of those who committed the atrocities. By the way, a few of my relatives died unspeakably at the hands of the counter-Bushido Imperial Japanese. My hatred for those vicious acts is undiminished – and yet, none of that makes me despise the Japanese who were not ever born back then. Why should it? The only one who would be hurt by me shifting the hatred and blame onto another generation, is me. Besides, early in my life, I learned to like and respect the Japanese – and that is not dishonouring my dead relatives at all..

    To blazes with that useless concept of the sins of the fathers being passed to the children and grandchildren forever and ever. All that does is hinder progress, destroy happiness and start even more useless wars.

  80. For instance: None of those awful smelly Boagans of today took part in the massacres of Aborigines a century and more ago – so why blame them?

    Graham, I’ve not noticed anyone blaming them. Have I missed something?

  81. Yes Graham

    And to its credit, British law does not visit the sins of the fathers… to be guilty of murder a bloke must have done it themselves and intended to do it, shown beyond reasonable doubt.

    Confiscation of “the proceeds of crime” seems fair, though it could temporarily disadvantage the sons and daughters of the crim.

    Patrimony…. that’s tricky.
    Perhaps room for a Truth and Reconciliation Tribunal??

    In Gippsland, the weekend hunting trips of Angus McMillan have been known for decades. Recently it has taken publication of a book by a descendant living on the Isle of Skye, to bring those murders into public view again.

    McMillan has a federal electorate named after him.

    Graham: your attitude to modern Japanese is humane and admirable. May your murdered relatives rest in peace.

    We can do without “the law of the vendetta.”

  82. Everyone recognises bad shit was done in the past.
    As far as I can tell, no bad shit went down on 26/01/1788.

  83. Jumpy, the bad shit was that they came and stayed as though the place was empty. When they found it wasn’t empty, they killed the people there like vermin.

  84. Zoot:
    “You” second person plural is pretty unmistakable.
    “Australians” is pretty specific too. Even if its slippery application confounds inhabitants with decision-makers, and maliciously confuses Australia in the 19th Century with the formerly sovereign nation of Australia in 2018.

    The deliberate dishonesty on both sides of the arguments annoy the dickens out of me.

    Yes. A Truth and Reconciliation Commission would do much to bring about an enduring and just Reconciliation – but only if there were NO Australians whatsoever sitting on it, proving support services for it, investigating for it. No grant-plunderers, no do-badders, no closet-racists, no show-offs, no agents of foreign governments, no entrepreneurial lawyers, no imitation indigenes, none of the crooks and scoundrels who have distinguished themselves stirring up hatred. A Truth and Reconciliation Commission made up of compassionate, patient, responsible, experienced and observant Sotho, Zulus, Afrikaaners, “Asians”, Tswana, Xhosa and any other South Africans who fit the bill, but definitely NO Australians whatsoever. Australians of all colours and creeds have proven they are incompetent to deal with this matter without manufacturing more hatred and distress with absolutely no justice. And whatever you do: keep that useless United Nations bunch of twits right out of it.

  85. Thanks Graham, yes thats why I quoted Timothy Bottoms speech above because it points to the essence of this whole debate:

    It is essential as contemporary Australians that we acknowledge that we are not responsible for what happened on our colonial frontier, but we are responsible for not acknowledging what happened.

    And with regards to place names you are quite right, these are an extension of that acknowledgement required. Often too the original names for places are much more interesting and memorable then some greedy slave drivers like John Mackay and Robert Towns or psychopaths like Patrick Logan or corrupt politicians with blood on their hand like Queensland’s first premier Robert Herbert. To neglect recognising fundamental wrongs in our history leads to the repetition of more wrongs. To glorify European history without identifying it’s clear failings is to neglect to learn the hard but valuable lessons inherited therein.

    We know from the justice system how important victim impact statements are and restorative justice in the contemporary justice system is. Why can’t we use a similar approach to deal with these past wrongs. Why can’t we be proud that we are able to acknowledge these wrongs along with the amazing achievement our European heritage has given us? It would be such a simple gesture, yet it could give us so much. What I can’t understand is why is there such a hangup about this?

  86. “You” second person plural is pretty unmistakable.
    “Australians” is pretty specific too.

    Graham, you stated that Australians living today have been blamed for massacres that occurred in the nineteenth century.
    I have seen no evidence of this so I am simply asking you to clarify who made the accusations and preferably when.
    (According to my browser’s search function “you Australians” doesn’t appear anywhere on this page.)

  87. Ootz, this is just from memory.

    Last year on the ABC I heard an interview with John Mackay’s granddaughter (they didn’t go into specifics on her age, but she was certainly of sound mind) who wished to set the record straight.

    She said that John Mackay only once captained a ship that went blackbirding, was there only as captain, was uncomfortable about his role, so he desisted and made his opposition to the practice clear.

    I note that Ben Doherty in The Guardian says:

    Mackay pioneered European settlement of the town that now bears his name in the 1860s. He was heavily involved in the blackbirding trade, commanding ships across the south Pacific for nearly two decades.

    However, the Australian Dictionary of Biography entry makes no mention of blackbirding.

  88. I wasn’t an invasion, it was settlement, we went through this last year.
    If it were invasion then native title is extinguished, the High Court found exactly that in the Mabo case.
    And Brian, I gave a specific date, what bad shit happened that day ?

  89. Arrival with intention to stay.
    Brought convicts, guards, soldiers.
    Fairly straightforward, open, clear, I think.
    No subterfuge or hidden purpose. Some of the gaol terms were very long, as I understand it.
    Establishing a Penal Colony*

    The Fleet was most certainly not there to conduct a “Botany Bay and Surrounds Guided Tour” stopover in a Pacific cruise.

    * anyone having difficulty with ‘Penal’ or ‘Colony’, please consult a dictionary.


    Thanks Graham B, Ootz, Brian, John D; Mr J. and zoot.

    Obviously I had in mind the South African “Truth and Reconciliation Commission” – whatever its origins, a wonderful application of Christian principles to the domain of Caesar (politics).

    The guiding principle was that someone testifying there (and there were plenty of living perpetrators) had to tell the whole truth before the Commission.

    This nation needs to acknowledge the whole truth.
    Not (I think) primarily motivated by feelings [or accusations] of “white guilt” but for the sake of truth and sincerity.

    Veritas liberabit vos – the truth shall set you free.

  90. I think you may be mistaken when you write “if it was invasion native title is extinguished” Jumps old bean.

    I can think of any number of invasions where the invading power A left the vast majority of land ownership, business ownership, legal system in the invaded nation B, entirely intact.

    Because it’s simpler.

    Take over the military bases, govt ministries, press etc. as a first priority. Leave most of the rest intact. Nation A simply doesn’t have the manpower or the need, to try to run everything, in the sense of physical ownership and residential occupation.

    Of course, if A is ruled by a tinpot despot, he might help himself to the odd palace or gold ingot or Old Master painting…..

    But he and his invading minions will generally not be interested in the Jumpy home, or my car, or Mr Smith’s old backyard compost heap.

    It’s the vibe of the thing, invasion is a tricky old caper.

  91. Jumpy: The people who had an English offshore detention center settled into the middle of their land probably thought that it was bad for them no matter what weasel word you choose to use.

  92. Zoot (Whatdoyoucallit Day 10:51pm):

    “YOU killed off (all) your natives”.
    “YOU committed genocide”.
    As well as,
    “YOU have ((far more common than ‘had’) YOUR White Australia Policy”.
    “YOU AUSTRALIANS robber/deported/enslaved/murdered Chinese in Australia”

    Do-badders and other scoundrels in Australia.
    Ethnic Chinese in Australia, China and South East Asia..
    Visitors to Ausralia, such back-packers and 457-visa workers. from the US, Canada, Europe, Japan, Brazil.

    Why your browser couldn’t find it:
    Does your computer have ears so as to follow coral conversations?
    Does your browser have access to Facebook, Twitter and other social media?

    Australia does have a serious image problem. One that cannot – and should not – be sweetened by lying propaganda, nor be surrender to tiny cliques of self-serving scoundrels with their serious omissions and deliberate distortions.

    We do need a thorough and truthful recrafting of our national stories: good and bad, surprising and well-known; a recrafting that includes all participants and all institutions; one that admits mistakes and crimes as well as progress and benefits.

  93. Mr A, yes, the whole truth. The good stuff too. I’m arguing the good far outweighs the bad.

    Truth may be that none of the First Fleet had any options other than land and settle on Australian soil. Not the soldiers under orders, the convicts under force ( some African, some American, some born in transit )

    I reject the signs like ” Australias Day of Shame ” or professional shitstirers saying ” F***k Australia, burn the whole Country down ”
    Maybe the English Government/monarchy of the time need say sorry for 26/01/1788, not the folk thrust together.

    And if you want to argue about High Court competence and decisions, your not alone, there’re plenty of areas of contention with the Mabo case.

    Now, today is the 27th, is anyone better off because of antics yesterday? Are we as Australians closer together ?

    There was plenty of blame passed around, unearned blame, that’s a sure fire way to divide and anger.

  94. Jumpsie 9.50am.

    “The good stuff too.”

    Yes of course, we all have some “good stuff” in mind also when we step back and examine our nation, history, and our personal experiences.

    But a Commission (e.g. Royal Commission) always has – must have – a narrow focus. That is the limitation of the law and human thought.

    No doubt you have heard folk criticise the terms of reference of some Royal Commission. Jack will say, “Too narrow”, Jill will say, “Too broad”.

    How’s about you write us out a suitable set of terms for the proposed Truth and Reconciliation Commission??

    There’s a positive and practical contribution you may care to offer.

    Court. Ball. Yours.

    Thank you lines persons, thank you ball boys, ball girls and ball trans.


  95. Betrayal – Noel Pearson. The Turnbull government has burned the bridge of bipartisanship.

    History will ever remind Australians that at a crucial juncture of our history the prime minister lied, and his lie was a slur on the country’s most unequal people – its First Peoples.
    More than a week later Turnbull finally spoke to the press and doubled down on the lie in his government’s response to the Uluru Statement, that a representative voice of Indigenous peoples was “contrary to principles of equality” and a “third chamber of parliament” – this was the same proposal Turnbull supported in 2015.
    The equality rhetoric was pure Institute for Public Affairs (IPA) pabulum – an unprincipled pastiche of right-wing demagoguery more redolent of the equality rhetoric of US-style corporate libertarianism than genuine philosophical liberalism.

    And that is what had changed on that faithful moment late afternoon 26th of January 1788, when according to Sirius surgeon Worgan

    The Governor & a Number of the Officers assembled on Shore where, they Displayed the British Flag and each Officer with a Heart, glowing with Loyalty drank his Majesty’s Health and Success to the Colony.

    Corporate liberalism had arrived with the colony. The same mind set who make a decent profit from the offshore detention industry today, as John D points out. From the Empire to Australia Inc. where there is no space for humanity and plenty of virtue signalling with equality.

  96. Graham Bell @ January 27 at 9:09 am
    I obviously lead a more sheltered life than you since I have not seen any of these outrages. Thank you for your examples.
    I stand corrected. Some idiots (no doubt exercising their freedom to be bigots) have blamed people alive today for the atrocities committed by people in the past.

    How is this an argument for keeping January 26 as Australia’s national day?

  97. “” Corporate liberalism had arrived with the colony. “”
    Yeah sure.
    Remind us what Corporations profited from the First Fleet.
    Nothing at all to do with the State coercive force.

    Also, anyone that doesn’t know the difference between Corporatism and Capitalism would do well to read a bit about them and figure it out. In any event, neither has any direct connection to 26/01/1788.

  98. Jumpy your grasp on history is as tenuous as on reality.

    The Empire got private enterprise involved for the 2nd and 3rd Fleet which were unmitigated disasters.

    But while it’s not widely recognised, Australia’s founding myth is tied up with outsourcing. As with many public services in the late-18th and 19th centuries, convicts brought to the Australian colonies were transported by private companies under contract to the British government.

    Dilemmas faced by governments writing contracts for complex human services today, such as trade-offs between price and quality, and how to capture motives and incentives effectively, were present over 200 years ago.
    Conditions on the voyage — run by the slave trading company Camden, Calvert & King — were horrific, with convicts being poorly treated and given inadequate provisions. Despite an outcry in London after details became public, the Navy Board did not impose any financial penalty on the contractor. So what went wrong?

  99. Thanks to several posters for mentioning “blackbirding”. The Wikipedia article is quite detailed.

    (Interesting that it includes a footnote to a biographical piece by Peter Corris, who was an historian of the South Pacific before he came to wider fame as a writer of detective fiction.)

  100. Zoot: My main reason for keeping 26th January as Australia Day is that so long as it remains the anniversary of the arrival of the first prison ships – and of the first permanent contact between two very different cultures, races and world-views – these things cannot be and will not be ignored and forgotten.

    Change the date and the risk of these events and their consequences being forgotten or ignored increases
    Or worse yet , becoming distorted out of sight. Cheers.

    Ootz (12:22pm):

    Thanks for that link to Noel Pearson’s essay. (Don’t like him personally but respect and admire what he is trying to do).
    My strategy of reaching out to the political leadership of the right availed us nothing in the end. This is the bitter truth I learned these past 17 years.” and his criticism of today’s Labor Party is spot-on.

    My own contribution has always been along the lines of having each Governor-General and state Governor a person who has at least one ancestor of the Australoid race who was born in Australia – mainland or islands -prior to 26th January, 1788. Why not? And then having at least one-sixth of all Senator and Members with the same qualification. Well, we wouldn’t be worse off than with all the rubber-stamps we have now, would we?

  101. Cheers Graham, I concur with you on Pearson. Also I understand what you mean re keeping the date. In some ways the date has embedded symbolism with potential to hurt and heal, a day made to have a debate who we are and what we are made off. In contrast we now have a day of excesses with cheap plastic flag waving and insane patriotism as a recent corporate liberal gift to atone the masses and root the Nation.

    Yes, Australians in those days did criminally ignore Aboriginal people and fail to recognise that Australia Day commemorated an invasion. That hasn’t changed. But there wasn’t yet such a focus on rubbing it in.

    The main Australia Day activity in 20th century Sydney was standing on the edge of the harbour, watching the annual ferry boat race, mainly because they were wooden and old, much like John Howard. Like him, eventually one sank.

    But his legacy remained. For some reason, people now seem to think that Australia Day has always been about plastic bling from The Reject Shop and drinking the worst possible booze in large quantities. No, that was the Australia Day of British backpackers on Bondi Beach, never us.

  102. Ootz, the heading,
    ” Contracts and convicts: How perverse incentives created the death fleet”
    The Dear Leader paid whaler/merchants to do this disgusting job why? Perhaps Dear Leader was at war against freedom with the Navy? All taxpayer £s im guessing.
    Big Governments a peach to you isn’t it.

  103. My main reason for keeping 26th January as Australia Day is that so long as it remains the anniversary of the arrival of the first prison ships – and of the first permanent contact between two very different cultures, races and world-views – these things cannot be and will not be ignored and forgotten.

    Graham, (as do a number of first nations people) I agree that is an excellent reason,
    The conversation we have regarding how we deal with the current consequences of that arrival will inevitably involve at least some of the people you have identified as blaming contemporary whitefellas for historical atrocities. It is counter productive to get all hurt and unhappy because some idiot called us names.

  104. Zoot: There are two separate issues.
    The first is when we should have Australia day? Answer:definitely not invasion day.
    The second is should we commemorate the arrival of the first fleet? Answer: Yes. It is a key part of our history.

  105. ” As always, it’s the Whitefellas blocking progress.
    Zoot. “

    Do you have a point, or is this just a quip aimed at me rather than productive discussion.

  106. John
    The first arrival of the first ship of the First Fleet was 18/01/1788, will that do as ” invasion day ” ?

    Does anyone think, even if every Australian recognises every aspect and detail of history since then, that there won’t be criticism of the day chosen?

  107. Jumpy: First fleet day should be close to a date associated with the arrival at Pt Jackson or departure from England of the first fleet.
    What is important is that it is celebrated in a way that acknowledges both the achievement and the wrongness of the land stealing in a low key way.

  108. Does anyone think, even if every Australian recognises every aspect and detail of history since then, that there won’t be criticism of the day chosen?

    Of course there’ll be criticism, in this thread alone we have come up with at least a dozen possibilities and we haven’t achieved 100% agreement on any of them.
    Doesn’t mean a consensus within the Australian polity is impossible. What’s Bob Hawke doing these days?

  109. For mine, celebrating being Australian in 2018 can be as low or high key as any individual sees fit, whatever DNA one has or on any date.
    Everyone has some shitty stuff their ancestors did, everyone.
    The attitude of Graham Bell is one that can promote harmony. His comments are well worth rereading and takeing on board.

  110. Working some more in discussions on the concept of Capital Growth Restrained Property Titles (CGRPT’s), the most common question is “who would forgo growth of “value” when they don’t have to”.

    The kind of people who ask this question are mostly those who have already benefitted by the Howard Property Ponzi Scheme (Baby Boomers), or those who hope to in the future (those with elevated incomes and zero educational debt).

    The answer so far was limited to those who are entering the property market from a below ground level position (high educational debt, poor circumstances, minimal pay, minimal work experience, or any combination of those elements). However from yesterday’s conversation I believe that there is one very large sector which is well resourced which would drive CGRPT’s harder than any other group.

    These people are the downsizers. Those who have benefitted from the capital growth of the Howard influence, have only one property, modest superannuation holdings, and high expectations of what to do with their time remaining. This group would potentially provide the capital to rapidly expand the stock of affordable properties, turn them over in a relatively short period, and benefit from having access to more of their accrued capital with which to achieve a better lifestyle with fewer compromises.

    The discussion continues.

  111. Ootz (Re: JANUARY 25, 2018 AT 2:21 PM):

    There you go Geoff Miell, this is where conservative thinking is focusing on to deal with the massive challenges the fundamental shake up of our non sustainable lifestyle present.

    I don’t think “conservative thinking” has a monopoly on failing to deal with the massive challenges looming that will shake up our present non-sustainable lifestyle.

    As an example, when the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd incumbency held sway, the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) had prepared a report in March 2009, designated Report 117: Transport energy futures: long-term oil supply trends and projections. This report was sent to a few (at least three) referees for peer-review. This report has never been officially released, and you won’t find it on the BITRE website. I think it’s rather ironic that an alternate official BITRE Report 117 concerns aviation.

    Despite the best efforts of the then Labor Australian Government to bury/suppress the original BITRE Report 117, it was subsequently leaked. This post (20 Jan 2012) and this (24 Jan 2012) at go into some detail on the key information apparently not being publicly considered (I think more likely deliberately ignored) by successions of governments concerning Australia’s liquid fuel security. I think this conclusion, posted on 24 Jan 2012, hasn’t appeared to have changed all that much since:

    It is crystal clear that the current government and top officials in various departments are in no mood to deal with peak oil. Therefore – using a quote from the internet – peak oil will deal with them, err.. with us. Unfortunately, we need to wait until either skyrocketing oil prices or physical shortages at filling stations wake up the general public to make peak oil an election issue. It will then be too late to prepare for declining oil production.

    In The Sydney Morning Herald, on 28 Feb 2017, in an article headlined Low oil prices set to recede, BHP warns, amid sluggish output gains, Michael Hovers, BHP Billiton group’s marketing petroleum vice-president, reportedly said:

    “The yields from producing [oil] fields decline at an average rate of around 3 to 4 per cent per annum. Therefore, even in the absence of growing demand, significant ongoing investment is required just to stand still.”

    “On our estimates, by 2025 the world will need approximately 30 million barrels a day of new supply to come online. This is a staggering one-third of current annual global demand and excludes projects already under development.”

    Are Michael Hovers’ comments exaggerated and alarmist? The International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2016 (published Nov 16) included Figure 3.16: Global supply outlook from selected sources in the New Policies Scenario that shows for the first time that a supply-demand gap emerges (as indicated on the graph) before 2020 “that must be filled by production from conventional crude oil projects yet-to-be-approved”. Is the IEA being alarmist and exaggerated too?

    Despite the 2009 original BITRE Report 117 projections that:

    The outlook under a base case scenario is for a long decline in oil production to begin in 2017, which will stretch to the end of the century and beyond.

    …have been proven wrong, as far as timing is concerned – it’s now early 2018 and the decline hasn’t happened yet – that’s no cause for gloating or celebration. That means we have had more time to transition away from petroleum-based fuels, but we (as a society) have squandered that time and done little to reduce our dependency on petroleum-based fuels.

    And didn’t Kev Rudd at some stage say that climate change was the great moral challenge of our time, or words to that effect? And what happened when he was in a position to do something about it? He reneged. The same with Mal Turnbull.

    When the going gets tough, it appears most politicians (and business leaders) don’t have the courage to deal with the critical issues.

  112. GM: What you have to keep in mind is that oil exploration is very expensive. As a result, oil companies are going to slow exploration once they have found reserves to cover their projections for a limited number of years. You have to ask whether peak oil claims really do mean that we are about to run out of oil or are looking at a construct driven by oil exploration policy.
    This is not to say that we aren’t getting closer to peak oil nor that we shouldn’t be getting on with the action required to reduce oil consumption, reduce energy requirements and/or increasing production of renewable replacements for oil.

  113. John D (Re: JANUARY 31, 2018 AT 11:31 AM):

    GM: What you have to keep in mind is that oil exploration is very expensive. As a result, oil companies are going to slow exploration once they have found reserves to cover their projections for a limited number of years.

    Indeed – oil exploration is very expensive. The price of oil is not helping either. This video from Bloomberg may be of interest.

    The time-frame from discovery to field/play development to full production can be of the order of decades, particularly if it is off-shore. So, a few years of reserves is not enough – you need decades.

    You have to ask whether peak oil claims really do mean that we are about to run out of oil or are looking at a construct driven by oil exploration policy.

    Peak oil is NOT about running out of oil. It is about the all time peaking of production of oil – for an individual well, a group of wells, a regional area of plays, or globally – followed by a sustained decline in production, that may take years to decades, to perhaps a century to end production. The danger for our civilization is remaining heavily dependent on oil when the supply begins a sustained decline – not enough oil to go around and there’s nothing we can do about it, other than to live without it.

    As I said before: We must leave oil before it leaves us. We must leave oil to mitigate dangerous climate change.

  114. GM:

    As I said before: We must leave oil before it leaves us. We must leave oil to mitigate dangerous climate change.

    Yep. And the potential contribution from biofuels to this project will probably be very small if increased food shortages and environmental damage are to be avoided. (I say “will probably” because I am conscious that some saltwater algae based systems may work without requiring a lot of land. )

  115. John Davidson (Re: JANUARY 31, 2018 AT 4:40 PM):

    And the potential contribution from biofuels to this project will probably be very small if increased food shortages and environmental damage are to be avoided.

    These are the latest crude oil production stats from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). They are revised monthly and published towards the end of the month.

    On Monday, a Qantas 787 Dreamliner took-off on the world’s first US-Australia biofuel flight, as reported here. The article states:

    The carinata makes high-quality oil considered ideal for aviation biofuel, with one hectare of seeds yielding 400 litres of biofuel and 1400 litres of renewable diesel.

    The seed is sown in fallow areas where other food crops have failed or in between regular crop cycles and provides an added economic boon for farmers.

    I think a yield rate of 1800 litres (aviation + biodiesel) per hectare is poor compared with sugarcane to ethanol yield rates (9000 – 12000 litres per hectare), as discussed in an earlier thread.

    Qantas used 4.8 billion litres of conventional jet fuel in 2016.

    Other questions unanswered include:
    How much petroleum fuels are consumed to produce these biofuels? If the farmers use petroleum fuels, then the process is not sustainable.
    What’s the EROI for this process? If the EROI is below 5:1, then it’s not sustainable long-term. Below 10:1, it’s still marginal.
    Does this crop require phosphorus supplementation to boost yield rates?

    (I say “will probably” because I am conscious that some saltwater algae based systems may work without requiring a lot of land. )

    According to the evidence I see, global peak oil looks like it will arrive soon (perhaps before 2020, if we are really lucky; before 2030). If the solutions to replace petroleum aren’t already available to deploy now, it’s probably now already too late. We’ll see.

  116. GM: In terms of non-bio renewable fuels based on currently commercially available processes there is no overwhelming reason why production could not be started up relatively quickly.
    However, it would be smart to start doing the planning now, decide which of the possibilities is going to be pursued and perhaps do some R&D to optimize the processes and develop alternatives.

  117. So, with the bio-
    ones, there’s a longer lead time because
    * suitable sites needed
    * crops to be planted
    * crops to grow
    * water supplies etc need soring

  118. Ambi: If we are talking replacing fossil oil with biofuels you also have to decide where the food that was produced on the land diverted to biofuels is going to come from or what part of the wild environment is going to be sacrificed.

  119. John Davidson (Re: FEBRUARY 1, 2018 AT 2:47 PM):

    GM: In terms of non-bio renewable fuels based on currently commercially available processes there is no overwhelming reason why production could not be started up relatively quickly.

    What “non-bio renewable fuels” are you referring to, particularly for transport applications (road, sea, air)? Could you please enunciate them? And how quickly (i.e. time-frame in years) do you think these could be deployed, if the will was there to proceed?

    However, it would be smart to start doing the planning now…

    I agree. But I don’t see it happening to any great extent and with any real sense of urgency.

    …decide which of the possibilities is going to be pursued…

    Last July, the UK and French governments announced the banning of the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040. And it seems the Indian & Chinese governments may do the same, perhaps bans by 2030. I think these are steps in the right direction, but is it enough and urgent enough? I doubt it.

    And where is the Australian government on this issue? They won’t even consider the possibility of declining petroleum fuel supplies – although Josh Frydenberg’s recent op-ed on electric vehicles is perhaps an encouraging sign that there’s maybe a rethink occurring.

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