Monday, November 06, 2006

GOVT Frustrated and not liking difference

"I expressed my frustration that the term is not often helpful because different people listen to it and give different meanings to it"- parliamentary secretary Andrew Robb on the subject of term multiculturalism(1), as he ponders whether or not to reinstate the council of multicultural Australia.

I don't know what else multiculturalism is meant to be? Multiculturalism is surely a challenge, but that doesn't mean we should shy away from it. The alternatives is assimilation, hidden under the slightly less offensive term of 'integration'. A bland, dry, homogenous Australia is what this Govt. wants, and others seem to want it too.

As Howard turns the screws, this country is experiencing a distinctly nationalist/fascist turn. In history, the right to one’s opinion and practices was one of the founding principles of western democratic thought. It was the ideal that we strove for. How strange that, in 2006 as we send soldiers overseas to “enforce” democracy, our govt would rather enforce homogeneity through governmental policy than help us learn how to be accepting and get along. It favours abandoning this ideal in favour of wiping out the concept, halting progress and retarding us backwards into a paranoid, suspicious mindset.

Of course things would be easier for governments if everybody was the same! Like semi intelligent robots with simple desires searching for simple pleasures, we would faithfully pay taxes so that the bureaucrats and generals can play lego with our society.

It’s time that somebody patted Howard on the back and took him back to the ward, where he'd be free to hallucinate for the rest of his days about a white Australian monoculture with shared values, tastes, names, pastimes and persuasions. Foreigners would be distrusted, their customs shunned and ever so gradually, no-one would have the right to practice any form of individuality. Anti-social bigots, drunk chauvinists, and agro footballers excepted! Pissed larrikens are a cultural ideal, especially at weddings, b'days and, well... all the times in between.

That's the fascist pipe dream: a country of governable minds, with no aspiration to govern themselves. Coupled with the idea of "free" enterprise, the govt. will have us doing everything for ourselves. Why then do we have a govt? I'm getting side tracked but when a govt. can no longer provide for its people, it becomes obsolete. When NGO's pick up the waste produced by this fascist economy which is both environmental and social, I think that they are in fact doing the job of an obsolete government.

Getting back to the point, we are already multicultural in so many ways. The food we eat, the music we listen to and so much more. I think it will be hard to just kick the habit, but they will try to make us forget we ever dared thinking of just getting along.

So we wait for the new replacement word and whatever policy decisions they might follow it with. Whether they retroactively replace 'multiculturalism' in everything, or they start enforcing the new meaning/word, I'm scared for the country I live in. I feel ashamed that such acid may is leaking into the public consciousness. I imagine a huge green monster sheepishly wiping the spittle from its mouth, beady eyes greedily wondering what to consume next.

(1) Andrew Rob in The Australian, article by Cath Hart, November 04, 2006 12:00am,,10117,20698659-421,00.html?from=public_rss


Blogger Tristan Louth-Robins said...

I am in no doubt about your observations here. We are currently have an elected government exercising an atmosphere of paranoia and fear - which is being pushed through in draconian policies and agendas not far removed from McCarthyism of 1950's US, and more alarmingly there are echoes of Italy under Mussolini during the 1930's. Such activities are being used as vehicle for social control. Propaganda is a loose term, but Fascism (as you stated) is the more appropriate definition. We have witnessed over the past few years a culture of 'truth dodging' emerging where our elected representatives behave like crooked lawyers - unrepentant and golden, garaunteed of a fat pay cheque and secure exile when they eventually fuck up. These fascist agendas are passed through and no-one bats an eyelid because they've been given the assurance that they'll remain housed clothed and fed. I can see what it's doing. It's turning our own society against each other. Everybodies looking under each beds and checking their front yards to see if we've been invaded. The news has turned into light entertainment because seeing real news hurts peoples heads. Being forced to think and question the status quo - the poor dears. And we can forget about any utterance of 'multicuturalism' from Howard, etc. That's just an open invitation for cultural and religious harmony, and we don't wan't that. What the 'government' has to wake up to is the fact that the world is officaly globalised, and as long as we keep illigally invading countries and exploiting third world resources, there will be scores of people seeking refuge here. Sending them back home, cosigning them to attols and pursecuting their very intentions will send a negative message. And when you start doing in this country, serious problems arise. Angry grafitti. Negative so far, but I would take heart in the recent results in the US congressional elections. Sure, the Democratic party aren't much better than the neo-cons, but they have more of a conscience regarding domestic and international affairs, and the people turned out to vote and initiate change. I think there's still hope for this country, as I'm old enough to remember how much better it was before Howard took control and started destroying what poeple had worked so hard towards over the last thirty odd years. Change works on strange levels: it might restore global harmony a little, keep the ABC intact and keep this planet together for a few more generations. I was hoping to have kids after all..Cheers,tlr

November 09, 2006 9:57 PM  
Blogger Jodie O'Regan said...

I think you can take political action by simply buying products from bands that feature a diverse ethnic spread in their advertising.
Beneton for eg.

Yes that should do it nicely.

November 14, 2006 9:24 AM  

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