September 10th 2005

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Articles from this issue:

CANBERRA OBSERVED: The Telstra sale and economic ideology

EDITORIAL: Telstra: a better way forward . . .

SPECIAL FEATURE: The human cost of sexual exploitation (Part 1)

BIOETHICS: Review of cloning and embryo research laws

ECONOMICS: What future for globalism?

PRIMARY INDUSTRY: Pork farmers under attack on two fronts

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Revolting students / Precondition for education / Drugs and Asia / Swallow insult / Waldheimer's disease / Warning shadows

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS: China frustrates Taiwan's bid to play bigger role

TAIWAN: Fostering democracies on the Pacific Rim

VIETNAM: Remembering the battle of Long Tan

CINEMA: Romantic comedy 'Wedding Crashers' lauds boys behaving badly

Competition Policy killing cane-farmers (letter)

Cornelia Rau not Australian (letter)

Elephant in the room (letter)

Profits for the people (letter)

Rights deprivation syndrome (letter)

BOOKS: The Criminalization of Christianity, by Janet L. Folger


Books promotion page

Revolting students / Precondition for education / Drugs and Asia / Swallow insult / Waldheimer's disease / Warning shadows

by Max Teichmann

News Weekly, September 10, 2005
Revolting students

The mob rule that seems to have reared its familiar and ugly head at Sydney University, demonstrates - if demonstration were needed - that students' unions, as presently constituted, have virtually outlived any usefulness that they might once have possessed.

They are unrepresentative, expensive and wasteful, and are simply providing platforms for careerists and exhibitionists who don't like serious commitment to study, i.e., who wouldn't work in an iron lung.

The ALP has gone part of the way by separating the basic services that students may want or need, from all the political and social flapdoodle which the Left and small parties and fringe groups see as centrally important. Important to them, so little genuine student or public support do they possess.

Precondition for education

But Beazley has had to retain the compulsory levy for all students, and Brendan Nelson will have none of this. Students, who we are always being told have no money, shouldn't have to pay for services they don't need, as a pre-condition for their being able to be educated.

Education is not about child-care or counselling or the 101 activities which have arisen on campus, sheltering under the rubric of "education".

Those who desire these services should be subsidised, and the unis and the state - federal and provincial - can help. But so long as compulsory student levies remain in any form, the Left and the carpetbaggers will surreptitiously re-introduce their ideological extravaganzas.

Finally, the little mateship that has flourished between certain kinds of administrators and some student leaders, should be wound down, or else made transparent. Education is not about shonky real estate ventures, any more than it should be about bogus politicising.

Drugs and Asia

The continuing drug saga being enacted in Indonesia and other countries in our Asian neighbourhood, is doing more for the local anti-drugs propaganda crusaders than anything that the local campaigners have offered, so far. Not that there have been many intensive forays into this highly lucrative industry.

In the past, our arrogant young tourists, urged on by the hooligan elements in the press, have sought out poor, cheap, Third World societies, where they can live as they please, irrespective of how the locals feel or what moral and religious sensibilities our tourists might be violating.

If the host country has laws forbidding certain forms of behaviour which our tourists enjoy, then the foreigners should waive their laws in our favour. If they won't - if their governments insist on enforcing those laws, without fear or favour - our Government must heavy them to back off. Humiliate them, in other words.

This is the classical colonial mentality so criticised by our Left historians and anti-imperialists, but a mentality entrenched in our media demi-monde and our Beautiful People. Thus, a spokesperson for our fashion industry said that the young model being investigated for possessing drugs, would not suffer professionally, if she were convicted, even if she underwent a period of imprisonment.

No: it would bring her lots of work here. Really?

If true, it shows the extent of the problems we have with our self-appointed radical elites, and their pro-drugs, "everything is permitted" philosophy. Such affirmations are music to the ears of our Mr Bigs, not to mention any bent cops, politicians and lawyers here in Australia.

I think more and more Australians are awakening to certain political and cultural realities with respect to our neighbours, and our real place in the scheme of things.

This is not 19th-century China, where the white imperialists and the Japanese had their own legal systems and cultural enclaves in concessions, within which they were immune from Chinese laws and the Chinese Government.

Swallow insult

The Chinese had to swallow this insult, but never forgot it. Have they? And our radical teachers always hammer this point - rightly. But what else has been happening vis à vis Indonesia, other than that?

Their Government, their courts (even the highest in the land) and their police have been successively and indiscriminately impugned by people here - politicians, journalists, disk-jocks, fleabag journalists and roving civil libertarians - abused for trying to sustain a sovereign state; abused for being hard on drugs, on prostitution, on hooliganism; because we aren't hard here.

And we (and they) are seeing the results here. But the fact is, we come as guests, not conquerors.

After he had been exposed to the unenviable experience of conversations, and at least one BBC debate/discussion, with Gough Whitlam (which I heard), Singapore's Lee Kwan Yew, in the early 1970s, made a series of judgements and predictions as to what Australia would be like, and what sort of people Australians would become, if the hallucinatory nonsense of Whitlam became our guiding philosophy.

I shouldn't have to repeat yet again what he said - but he was right, and it has happened. (I think Malaysia's Mahatir was influenced by this analysis, and friend Keating didn't exactly help.) But we took a wrong turning then, and are unlikely to ever get back to where we were at that time.

But almost as if in denial of sensed realities, Australians have been regaled by our opinion-formers, with the same compensatory vanities with which isolated, malfunctioning societies, with chips on their shoulders, are regularly duped. We are the greatest, at everything. Everyone loves us, or should - and relishes our company, and our advice.

This is a road the Americans trod, and we know where it got them. And money can't buy everything.

We in fact have two good friends - old friends - Britain and the US; though in politics there is no such thing as a free lunch.

We also have a number of Indo-Pacific countries which understand us, yet still like us, plus a whole network of those who will do things with us when it suits them ... otherwise not - as is their right. And a few who despise us.

Our most important regional relationship, that with Indonesia, has so often been stressful or at arm's length; but it now appears better than for many decades - a great relief to most Australians.

But there are those who appear to hate this new amity, and the loss of privileged contacts they once enjoyed. Or else who hate to give Howard and Downer credit for anything, although it is these leaders' job. Or else, those who seek the degradation of the Australian-Indonesian amity as a precondition for the resumption of people-smuggling.

Having just lost Aceh as a ground for troublemaking, we are suddenly hearing of West Papua from various public media hacks.

And of course the disgraceful interference with Indonesia's legal procedures so as to protect Australian drug-pushers and drug-smokers. What a cause to go out to bat for, in Asia!

It is a measure of the strength of the pro-drug lobby and the New Class drug culture here, and of the total decadence of sections of the media and the venality of lawyers.

We should close the door on all these people - especially as, at long last, we are moving, as a government and society, to demand that migrants and visitors respect our laws, our values and our mores.

Waldheimer's disease

The contretemps arising from Victorian federal MP Michael Danby's raising the question of the membership of one of our older migrants of the leading World War II Hungarian fascist party, the Arrow Cross, brings up all the usual feelings. Why bother, at this late date? Why an 89-year-old man? Was the Arrow Cross so bad? Did our old Hungarian play a significant role in events, anyway?

The Arrow Cross was a vile fascist party - one of the worst. Hungary's Regent Admiral Horthy, originally an anti-Semite, protected Hungary's Jews, for most of the war, from the Germans and from Ferenc Szálasi's rabid Arrow Cross.

Overthrown in 1944, with German connivance, for trying to arrange a separate peace treaty with the advancing Russians, Horthy was replaced by this sadistic, rock-bottomed group of thugs and sadists.

The Arrow Cross didn't waste their time fighting the advancing Russians (the siege of Budapest lasted 100 days); they spent the time looting and murdering Jews, Gypsies and political opponents.

Some of the most horrible of all atrocities, against Budapest Jews, were committed by these people. And I'll spare the reader, at this point.

When Adolf Eichmann and his Gestapo turned up, then the mass-deportation of Jews to Auschwitz started in earnest. But the Arrow Cross had done their bit.

Mr Lajos Polgar has said that he was secretary to Joseph Sera, a senior Arrow Cross leader. Sera was convicted as a war criminal and hanged.

Attempts seem to have been made to implicate an old friend Malcolm Fraser, though clearly he would have had no knowledge thereof, because Mr Polgar had changed his name and altered his age.

One ironical note. When the Russians took over in Hungary, they re-filled the camps, not only with some right-wingers, but also with social democrats and any surviving liberals. Looking around for guards, they happily recruited ex-Arrow Cross members who just had to change uniforms.

Finally, the Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who saved so many Jews, was arrested by the Soviet KGB at the end of the Budapest fighting. He was accused of being a CIA spy, and then disappeared forever into Siberia and the gulags.

He might have fared better had he been a member of the Arrow Cross.

Warning shadows

China and Russia are conducting joint military manoeuvres, the first for a very long time.

Keep an eye on this alliance, linked as it is with Iran. It is anti-American, anti-Japanese and - were India to dare to stand up - anti-Indian.

A most momentous development. They, i.e., Russia and China, had earlier agreed to fully exchange nuclear technology.

  • Max Teichmann

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