[I have been busy with other things, so not posting very much. It's partly distraction, partly finding a different approach, wanting to give less power to the nonsense that passes for mainstream political and social commentary, and more power to important and sane things. I'll probably post about it before too long. Also I have (yet) another idea on how to present my economics thoughts so they might attract some attention. I'll share that at an appropriate time too.]
I realised, from reading and interacting with indigenous folk, that my recent Anthem words still lacked something important. Fortunately there was a line that could be readily modified to cover the need. Perhaps this version is ready to promote more widely. (You may share it freely, with attribution to me.)
[Another post from the Two Fires Festival , specifically here. I want to promote this more widely when I get a chance.]
Many people find the words of our national anthem, Advance Australia Fair
, to be unsatisfactory, for various reasons, such as
• no mention of the First Australians
• too redolent of old British Empire attitudes (the original version was written in 1878).
• the land is to be owned and used, rather than being a wonder we preserve and a provider we care for and pass on
• the antiquated phrasing (and not just “girt”).
[A good piece from one of my favourite sources, Campaign For America's Future (formerly TomPaine.com). Read the Greider piece too, it's not very long.]
by Dave Johnson
Have our trade policies helped or hurt the country? You can look down at equations and models, or you can look up and see what is happening around you. Equations and models will tell you that “free trade” is a good thing. But if you look up and see what is happening around you … “not so much” is such an understatement. So a comparison of what economists predicted “free trade” would bring with what has actually happened might help us find a way out of the economic mess we are in.
[I am involved in organising an unusual local festival that combines Arts and Activism, the Two Fires Festival in Braidwood, NSW, 12-14 April - soon! That's the main reason there hasn't been much posted here lately. I'll put a few more festival things up over coming days. Here is the blurb on the session I care most about.]
The challenge for our generation is to create an enduring way of being, in Australia and around the world, so that our children may look forward to an indefinite future of healthy life in a healthy landscape. Our agricultural and other direct involvements in the landscape have a key role, and the search for enduring systems has been under way for some time.
Historian Bill Gammage’s remarkable recent book The Biggest Estate on Earth teaches us that if our descendants fulfil this aspiration they will not have been the first. For millennia prior to the arrival of Europeans, the Australian landscape was managed comprehensively, intimately and enduringly to be productive, diverse, and safer from fire, flood and drought.
[I sent this to The Canberra Times Sunday (24th). Still waiting for a response, though it's highly apposite to the local Senate race, with Zed Seselja having ousted Gary Humphries from number one on the Liberal Senate ticket, and Simon Sheikh being a vigorous Greens candidate with at least an outside chance.]
“Left wing” and the “most extreme government in Australia”, is how Jeremy Hanson chose to label the ACT’s Labor-Green Government upon winning the local Liberal leadership recently. Clearly he was singing from the current Liberal Party song sheet, which seeks to label the Greens “extremists” at every slight opportunity.
Now that local Liberal Zed Seselja is gunning for the national stage in the Senate, we should put these claims in a little perspective, and examine who is extreme and who reflects “good common-sense values”, to quote Hanson again.
Part 3 of 3 on Independent Australia.
In this final part of his three part series, Dr Geoff Davies surveys the current political scene, including the disarray of the Labor Party, from a longer perspective.
Part 2 of 3 on Independent Australia.
“In this second part of his three part series, Dr Geoff Davies looks at the causes of the dramatic political shift to the Right since the 1980s, along with its flimsy basis.”