Wasted Political Capital

Wasting precious political capital on useless symbolism was once the preserve of the political left. Now it is emerging on the right side of politics.

Wasted Political Capital

The first political announcement of the new Year by the government was that the national anthem was to be changed.

No, it wasn't going to be abandoned for something better, just tweaked a little in the hope of appeasing a few squeaky voices of complaint.

The PM chose to expend some of his hefty political capital on changing a single word - going from 'we are young and free' to 'we are one and free'

It doesn't mean much except to the wokesters who see meaningless symbolism as an excuse to do nothing meaningful about serious problems.

And there are serious problems in many Aboriginal communities. Alcoholism, substance abuse, domestic violence, child abuse, kidney disease, diabetes, obesity...I could go on. We've been saying for years we need to close the gap...which is now more like a gorge than a narrow space

The symbolism of marching across the bridge, a national apology, adopting fabricated ceremonies like welcome to country, endorsing a commercial design as a national flag and other assorted cures have done nothing to fix these systemic issues.

Throwing billions of dollars at them every single year hasn't done much either.

My opening editorial from Sky News Behind the News program.

That money has simply enabled government departments to grow, allowed Aboriginal corporations to squirrel away billions of their own, funded a plethora of programs and yet many Aboriginal people continue to live in conditions we could only describe as third world.

It's clear money, bureaucrats and symbolism don't make a difference. The only thing that will make a difference is attitude.

We have to change ours and sections of the Aboriginal community need to change theirs.

We are not oppressors or enslavers. They are not victims or the oppressed. We are all Australians who need to live under the rule of law and in accordance with basic societal expectations.

That means not turning away from the confronting conditions and harrowing actions taking place in some Aboriginal communities. It means expecting similar standards from all Australians whatever their skin colour.

That's what makes this minor change to our Anthem such a surprising and wasteful process. The militants want it dumped all together. The only people I have heard champion this are inner city left leaning politicians wanting to appear so sensible and compassionate.

It's a nonsense and I doubt that most people will really care. But this change will not unite the country. Instead it will serve as a further instance of division.

Some will sing the original version of Advance Australia Fair while some will go for this version by decree - likely to make themselves feel better.  Most people probably won't even notice he change because they don't know the words to the anthem in the first place.

The radicals who proclaim they live on some fabled historical land or are part of an American style  'first nation' will continue to rail against everything that contemporary Australian society provides - except the taxpayer money that funds their lifestyle.  

They'll continue to demand racist laws and special clauses to help them while also condemning 'racist laws and special clauses' for holding them back.

It's a nonsense but it is also a profitable industry of grievance. Countering this is the key to making a meaningful difference in the lives of those who truly do need and want our help.

Symbolism isn't the answer, nor is money. The only thing that will change the plight of some of the most marginalised in our community is attitude.

Changing from young to one, does nothing to make that happen.

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