Tuesday, November 01, 2022

Why do few people have positive views of Aborigines?

Noel Pearson says that few do and he is undoubtedly right. Helen Trinca below reinforces that point and tries to explain it. Her explnation is however a work of desperation. She mimics American blacks in saying it is all due to the past -- to the bad treatment of their ancestors. She appears unaware that NOBODY has had ancestors as badly treated as the Jews -- 4,000 years of persecution! -- and yet present-day Jews flourish mightily. Blaming the past is rubbish. It is the present that counts.

Psychological research has repeatedly shown that impressions we have of others are highly malleable. We are strongly influenced by what we have most recently seen. It even has a name: "The recency effect". Our views rapidly move towards what we ourseves have recently experienced. Expectations and stereotypes rapidly give way to actual experience. Some of the academic research findings to that effect is summarized here and here

So whatever view we have of Aborigines will be strongly founded in our experience of them. And we DO have some experiences of them, even in the cities. And if I can summarize that experiences briefly: We see them mainly as drunks and beggars and layabouts. We do not like WHITE drunks and beggars and layabouts so there is no likelihood that we would like that in blacks.

So why are so many blacks like that? No mystery. They are the victims of their separate development (Yes. I know of another usage of that phrase). For 60,000 years, they have evolved in geographical isolation as superb hunter gatherers and have some quite eeries abilities in consequence of that. But they have NOT evolved the abilities that allow them to fit in easily with the differently evolved people of the Eurasian continent. They are like fish out of water in a modern Western society. Many thousands of years of fierce competition among the many people of Eurasia has enforced an adaptive evolution in them that very few Aborigines can easily co-exist with. They don't "fit in".

Just a final and relatively minor point: Trinca mentions the hard time that football fans gave Aboriginal player Adam Goodes and blames it on racial prejudice. She omits much in that. See here and here

Noel Pearson opened a new front in the story of Indigenous Australia when he used his first ABC Radio National Boyer Lecture to talk about the unpopularity of First Nations people.

It was a shocking statement that came early in Pearson’s impressive opener to the four-lecture series delivered first on television on October 27 and repeated on radio on Sunday, and it’s worth quoting at length

“We are a much unloved people,” Pearson said. “We are perhaps the ethnic group Australians feel least connected to. We are not popular and we are not personally known to many Australians. Few have met us and a small minority count us as friends. And despite never having met any of us and knowing very little about us other than what is in the media and what WEH Stanner, whose 1968 Boyer Lectures loom large over my lectures, called ‘folklore’ about us, Australians hold and express strong views about us, the great proportion of which is negative and unfriendly.

“It has ever been thus. Worse in the past but still true today. If success in the forthcoming referendum is predicated on our popularity as a people, then it is doubtful we will succeed. It does not and will not take much to mobilise antipathy against Aboriginal people and to conjure the worst imaginings about us and the recognition we seek. For those who wish to oppose our recognition it will be like shooting fish in a barrel. An inane thing to do – but easy. A heartless thing to do – but easy.”

Many non-Indigenous Australians would have felt a stab of recognition on hearing those words but, worse still, despair for the future. Pearson was calling it as it is, not in anger but with a profoundly sad pragmatism that reminds us that he is not just good at rhetoric, he’s also a good thinker.

Pearson is urging us to go beyond the truth that racism has in various ways helped shape many views of Indigenous people to a more subtle but perhaps more damaging truth – that lack of familiarity and friendship with First Peoples could determine votes in the referendum on the advisory body, the voice to parliament.

The 2022 Boyer lecturer drew on the horrible sledging of former AFL great Adam Goodes to make his point. What happened to the footballer reminded Pearson of the trouble people had with Indigenous Australians, trouble that could readily be called racism and “certainly racism is much to do with it, but the reality is not that simple”.

“Unlike same-sex marriage there is not the requisite empathy of love to break through the prejudice, contempt and, yes, violence of the past. Australians simply do not have Aboriginal people within their circles of family and friendship with whom they can share fellow feeling.” It does not detract from the truth of Pearson’s comments to see this as an inspired tactic – sidelining the unhelpful argument about what is or is not racially motivated behaviour and staking out far less threatening ground for a conversation with opponents of the voice. Yet it has rarely, if ever, been articulated.

Most non-Indigenous Australians – even those committed to the voice and a treaty, those who value the deep culture of Aboriginal people; those who want in every way to atone for the wrongs of the past – know Pearson is right when he says Aboriginal people are simply not in the friendship and family groups of the overwhelming number of Australians.

It is difficult for many non-Indigenous Australians to even meet an Aboriginal person, given that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders comprise less than 4 per cent of the population. Many Australians will never see an Indigenous Australian other than in a media photograph or on television. Views are formed through news stories or cultural products such as paintings, dance, literature, film and music or exhibitions or books. There’s sport of course, the great Australian equaliser, which allows for largely positive recognition – except in cases such as that of Goodes. In country areas, First Nations people are more visible, but again class, economic differences and the social problems in many Indigenous communities mean the distances between the groups can be even more pronounced. The reality is unless you work in the arts, universities, the public service, or you are an elite sports person, you may have little chance of finding an Indigenous friend. It’s very different when it comes to homosexual people, for example.

A colleague reminds me that more than a decade ago we were at an election event at Rooty Hill in outer suburban Sydney when a woman got to her feet and asked Julia Gillard, the prime minister at the time, why she could not marry her same-sex partner. The crowd erupted with clapping and one knew then the experience of many families was dramatically shifting attitudes. Legislating for same-sex marriage is not the same as amending the Constitution, but Pearson’s point is well made.

Time, then, to come to terms with the reasons behind this “enduring antipathy against my people” – in short, that the colonial project required the first settlers to deny the rights of Aboriginal people to succeed. There are other reasons why Indigenous Australians may not be popular, but terra nullius underpins them all. That original denial and its tragic consequences are well documented yet still so little understood by many Australians offered little or inadequate history across so many decades. Australians need to accept and absorb this if we are to have any chance of exercising good judgment in the forthcoming referendum.


Greenie fanaticism in the schools is hurting kids

The Age of Anxiety has dawned. While this may be easy to dismiss as a natural corollary of the recent pandemic, when one looks a little closer, it’s not hard to see where this phenomenon manifested and where it is sustained.

In 2021, The Lancet published a global survey of responses from 10,000 young people, aged 16–25 years from Australia, Brazil, Finland, France, India, Nigeria, Philippines, Portugal, the UK, and America.

The survey found that 84 per cent of young people aged between 16-25 were ‘moderately to extremely worried’ about climate change. More than 50 per cent of respondents reported feeling sad, anxious, angry, powerless, helpless, and guilty.

Over 75 per cent said that they think the future is ‘frightening’. Climate anxiety and distress were correlated with perceived inadequate government response and associated feelings of betrayal.

Yet despite decades of technological and medical advances and the raising of hundreds of millions of people out of poverty, the natural question that arises is, where did this anxiety come from?

You need look no further than our education system and what is being taught to students of all ages on a daily basis.

For years the University of Sydney’s Environment Institute (SEI) has been at the forefront of Woke ideology and radical climate activism. According to the SEI’s worldview, radical climate activism is an antidote to falling education standards and eco-related mental health problems.

Ultimately, activism-driven anxiety is a product of the left-wing vanity project to achieve Net Zero emissions by 2050.

It’s a dream being fuelled by Australia’s oldest and most prestigious sandstone university and its treatment of the climate debate.

Who cares about numeracy and literacy? We have a global apocalypse on our hands! This is the mantra repeated by the Greta Thunbergs of the world and supported by SEI research.

The upshot: schools should be replaced with climate activism camps.

According to SEI Postdoctoral Fellow Blanche Verlie and Melbourne University’s Alicia Flynn, ‘ecocidal global socio-economic systems’ can be blamed for most problems in the modern world.

Verlie and Flynn ask, ‘What if education is not the solution, but part of the problem?’

They question whether education has ‘young people’s best interests at heart’ and claim schools constrain ‘cultural and political agency and effect’.

‘The transformative response is to reorient educational structures, practices, and relations towards those that sustain life on Earth. It is time for education to reckon with its role in the climate crisis and its entanglement within colonial-capitalist extractivism.’

In other words, the likes of Verlie and Flynn believe schools should be turned into centres where future social justice warriors can be trained the transform the ‘ecocidal’ structures from within.

Verlie and Flynn also remain stubbornly attached to the notion that there is ‘insufficient climate change education in schools’.

Perhaps they have not read the latest version of the National Curriculum, which is liberally littered with environmental content, thanks to the presence of ideologically driven cross-curriculum priorities like ‘sustainability’.

The criticism doesn’t just stop at schools, it extends to universities as well.

‘Our ecocidal global socio-economic systems (namely colonial-capitalism) are largely the result of work by people with BAs, BSs, LLBs, MBAs, and PhDs,’ Verlie and Flynn claim. ‘The transformative response is to reorient educational structures, practices, and relations towards those that sustain life on Earth.’

Well then, out with the old and in with the new!

Such extreme rejection of the Western intellectual tradition also undermines the SEI’s role as a department of research, but we cannot be surprised. After all, it was the University of Sydney that promoted the Unlearn campaign encouraging students to ‘demolish social norms and rebuild new ones in their place’.

To promote research and innovation, the University of Sydney said that preconceived ideas about ‘truth’, ‘love’, ‘medicine’, and ‘criminal’ must be questioned. Calling for students to ‘unlearn’ basic fundamental ideas of knowledge will leave young and impressionable Australians unaware of the basic principles which built our way of knowing and way of life.

Similarly, advising students – terrified that the end of the world is nigh – to attend climate rallies, is a recipe for disaster.

More activism is the last thing that Australian children need at school right now. The most recent report from the OECD Program for International Student Assessment confirmed that Australia has continued its 20-year decline in education standards.

Throwing education out the window entirely and replacing it with more climate activism is not the answer. Neither is it the answer to the growing mental health crisis among younger generations.

The educated SEI elite, living in a world of ideas, rather than reality, must start to present real solutions to the problems they identify.

Obliterating the entire ‘ecocidal’ system which includes Western literature, culture, education, morals, values, institutions – to make way for a green new world – is a fine example of Einstein’s observation of infinite ‘human stupidity’, not progress.

https://spectator.com.au/2022/11/the-kids-arent-alright-2/ ?


Is Mt Warning closure anything other than reverse racism?

Another small slice of Australia was roped off the other day, reserved for the enjoyment of a few and off-limits to the community at large.

It occurred just across the border in the Tweed Valley with the permanent closure of the National Parks and Wildlife Service’s Mt Warning hiking trail following a claim by a group of Indigenous people that it was not “culturally appropriate” for non-Indigenous Australians to walk the trail or climb the mountain.

World heritage-listed Mt Warning is the first point in Australia to catch the day’s sunrise and has been popular with hikers for decades.

But according to the self-named Indigenous Wollumbin Consultative Group, “public access is not culturally appropriate or culturally safe”.

“Wollumbin should not be a recreational space for the public to visit or use for tourism, including use of the image of Wollumbin for advertising purposes,” it declared, demanding the immediate closure of the site.

Predictably, the National Parks and Wildlife Service, which has been denying rumours of a proposed closure for the past year, rolled over and shut the gates.

No case had to be made. Just a demand by an unelected body to lock out all non-Indigenous people.

Local Indigenous leader Fiona Noble has questioned the processes of the WCG and the lack of consultation and says that “false naming and false stories” are being used to ban access to the region’s natural attractions.

Local businesswoman Peggy Lemaire says up to 90 per cent of the area’s national parks could not be accessed and that locals had rarely been informed in advance of a series of arbitrary site closures over the past three years.

Meanwhile, over on North Stradbroke Island, Queensland Parks and Wildlife has stipulated that part of a popular camping and fishing spot about 10km south of Dunwich be reserved for the exclusive use of local Indigenous people.

QPWS has said that the new rules provided “an opportunity for all Queenslanders, including the Quandamooka People, to immerse themselves in this unique natural and cultural setting.” It is difficult to see how it is an opportunity for “all Queenslanders” when the site is divided along racial lines.

Were a caravan or camping park operator to divide their property into White and Non-White sections, there would be justifiable outrage.

But when the reverse occurs, everyone looks the other way.

Some, including former local federal MP Andrew Laming, have called the move reverse racism. “If we’re really serious about reconciliation, why wouldn’t you share the site and camp together?” he asks.

In Victoria, the trend is the same as large areas of national parkland popular with hikers and rock climbers are gradually been closed to non-Indigenous people on cultural grounds.

In Queensland, it’s only a matter of time before Mt Tibrogargan, just north of Brisbane in the Glass House Mountains National Park, is closed to anyone who can’t claim Aboriginal heritage and it would naive to think that what is happening on North Stradbroke Island will not spread to Moreton Island and Fraser Island.

No one is in the business of denying the embrace and celebration of culture but it’s a strange thing when a particular group declares that the only way it can preserve its culture is by erecting racial borders.

The debate surrounding the referendum seeking approval or disapproval of the establishment of an Indigenous-only voice to parliament is gathering momentum.

If approved, it seems that it will only add to the Them and Us attitude that is becoming pervasive and which creates division while preaching inclusion.

The creation of a publicly funded body elected only by non-Indigenous voters in 2022 is unthinkable, yet we are told by some that the reverse, creating two classes of Australians, would be a good outcome.

Many years ago, as a callow youth wandering wide-eyed around the US on my first trip overseas, I walked into a cafe in the main street of a town in Mississippi. The black American man behind the cafe counter took one look at me and said: “Boy, ya’all got y’self in the wrong place.”

He was right. I’d unknowingly walked into the Blacks Only eatery. The Whites Only one was a little further down the street, past the Whites Only park bench and the Whites Only water fountain.

I remember thinking back then that you would never see Australia allow divisions to be put in place which were decided by race.

How wrong I was.


‘Cheaper childcare’ to get more Qld mums, dads back to work
More than 7000 Queenslanders will be able to get back into workforce, amid a labour shortage, off the back of Labor’s childcare reforms, the federal Treasurer claims

Positive predictions by politicians are usually to be viewed skeptically and this one is no exception. Cheaper care will mean more demand and, under existing regulations, that will require more staff to be hired. So the new measures will both expand and reduce the available workforce. Which number will be greatest? Who knows?

More than 7000 Queenslanders will be able to get back into workforce, amid a labour shortage, off the back of Labor’s childcare reforms according to new data from Treasury.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers seized on that data as he began his post-budget sales pitch.

He started a budget roadshow in Brisbane on Monday, as he prepared to hit five cities in four days.

Dr Chalmers is seeking to sell a “family-friendly budget”, after the nation’s finances last week revealed gloomy economic figures and rising inflation preventing the Albanese government from using cash handouts to ease growing cost-of-living pressures.

Labor’s policy to increase the maximum childcare subsidy to 90 per cent, while increasing the subsidy rate for all families earning up to $530,000 a year, will benefit up to 280,000 Queensland families, according to the data.

But Dr Chalmers said it meant more Queensland mums and dads would be able to get back to work sooner or do more hours – the equivalent of 7000 full-time staff across a range of fields.

“With high and rising inflation and rising interest rates, we know that Queensland families are doing it incredibly tough right now, which is why our family-friendly budget is focused on responsible cost-of-living relief that doesn’t make our inflationary challenge worse,” he said.

“Cheaper childcare is cost-of-living relief with an economic dividend – easing pressures on families while unlocking thousands of workers for Queensland businesses.”

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton said young families, self-funded retirees and pensioners were feeling real pressure at the moment.

“A lot of people heard the Prime Minister on many occasions – in fact, 97 occasions – say before the election that power prices would go down by $275,” Mr Dutton said.

“Now, the problem is that the Prime Minister has never mentioned that figure since the election.

“I think there is a level of growing disenchantment of people who are really dismayed that the Prime Minister was so adamant that he was able to deliver this promise, and people voted for him on that basis, and now, it really becomes a question of trust.”

Dr Chalmers also revealed money in the budget meant there would be 2811 additional places at Queensland universities.

This includes 932 places at Southern Cross University, 780 at the Queensland University of Technology, 379 at the University of Queensland, 364 at Central Queensland University, 123 at James Cook University, 120 at the University of the Sunshine Coast and 113 at the University of Southern Queensland.


Also see my other blogs. Main ones below:

http://dissectleft.blogspot.com (DISSECTING LEFTISM -- daily)

http://antigreen.blogspot.com (GREENIE WATCH)

http://pcwatch.blogspot.com (POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH)

http://edwatch.blogspot.com (EDUCATION WATCH)

http://snorphty.blogspot.com/ (TONGUE-TIED)

http://jonjayray.com/blogall.html More blogs


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