In the Great Southern Land we have an anticipatory aphorism: “She’ll be right, mate.”
Deployed phonetically as “shilbi roight moite,” it’s designed to comfort wunnannuther with some future bliss.
Although it hasn’t been seen in print or heard in conversation for half a century, and back then only in mawkish Cinema Australiana or suchlike, it’s a crucial strut in the mythical truss supporting a camaraderie of self delusion in this petulant and loud-mouthed little band of South Pacific former felons.
Problematic as apothegms are, this one was rather prescient. For “she,” the country, has indeed become “right,” politically.
Carefree and Happy
The world is chang’d I know not how
For men Kiss Men, not Women now
The Cosmopolitan Reader might regard a small cabal of radically-conservative conformist-dissidents whose urge to be noticed has overcome all semblance of common sense.
Throsby last recalls such juvenile behaviour in his first high school year when disparate personalities from around the region were corralled into a stultifying community that rapidly coalesced into those familiar groupings: popular, extrovert, jock, jocular, egghead, introvert, queer, and, of course, attention seekers.
An apparent sudden reappearance of the latter might be explained by the rise of conventional media’s various spin-offs and the ubiquitous Internet hangouts where this band of cantankerous carpers has regained visibility.
These proudly politically-incorrect social heretics revel in teasing the soul casing out of anyone taking issues too seriously, professing lefty tendencies, or merely hinting at compassion for the less fortunate.
Enter LGBTQQIA (+ABCDE…).
Both the libertarian thuggish and the Christian evangelical found themselves on the same side in Australia’s Marriage Equality debate.
Suddenly they are a white minority whose religious rights or freedoms of speech are threatened – in a secular country of predominantly white Christians whose religious and speech freedoms are not only enshrined but rarely tested.
Disturbingly, even for these interesting times, and in unison they lauded the Lord of Irony, Milo Yappenpoulos, on our balmy Pacific shores. A gay libertarian no less, one of many oxymoronic descriptors, but nevertheless a considerable disappointment if one was expecting Oscar Wilde. How droll.
Bobby, this is Rubbish
Oh Glory to the Scribes of Hansard:
Mr Katter: Mr Deputy Speaker, there is an ultimate statement upon a race of people, and that is that they simply vanish from the gene pool. If you take out my cousin-brothers, the First Australians, and if you take out the migrant population in Australia – recent migrants – then we have the lowest birth rate on earth. We are a vanishing race. Bob Birrell, the demographer from Melbourne, wrote an article in which he said that the current population of Australia is 22 million and within 100 years the population of Australia will be 7,000 [sic]. I thought, ‘This is ridiculous!’ I went down to check it in the library. He said that when 20 Australians die they’re replaced by only 17 people, and if that happened five times over a century then we would go from 21 million or 22 million people – whatever it was at the time – down to seven million people.
Mr Pyne: Bobby, this is rubbish.
Mr KATTER: I don’t know; you might be a member of the vanishing race. You’d better shut up because you will be shortly if I lose my temper. I finally conclude on this…
The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Mr Coulton ): Order! The member’s time has expired. Pursuant to resolution…
Mr Pyne: The ‘vanishing race’ thing is rubbish!
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Leader of the House, I’ll just finish up here, if that’s okay. Pursuant to the resolution agreed to earlier today, the House stands adjourned until 9.30 am tomorrow.
Throsby calculates, on Mr Katter’s figures, that 3 short for five generations is only 15 people, a small fraction of those incarcerated offshore, are needed to make up the missing 15 million. No, wait, that doesn’t seem right…?