Hello Cruel World
Wednesday, July 30, 2003
This Government seems to have gone back to their vomit when it comes to the old punitive controlling idea - which they've tried (& sometimes done) a few times before with universities, art bodies, charities, perhaps others.
It really bespeaks a deep pyschological attitude - you can just imagine some of the more dysfunctional family relationships working the same way.
There also seems to be a confusion between government (for, of, by the people. Y'know, that organisation whose function is supporting society, those in it & its supports, not just distributing goodies to your family/tribe/group & hangers-on. That's the sort of thing we criticise 'corrupt regimes' like Suharto's & ones in, say, Africa or PNG, for.) and political parties. There's a similar attitude in assorted totalitarian states, but it also goes back to the old 'strong man' & patronage-style societies, where you lived dependent on powerful persons or families.
From Vaclav/Vaclev Havel's Maiden Speech (as president of Czechoslovakia)
[He describes the authoritarian communist regime as "a contaminated moral environment" ... Of course this can apply to repressive regimes of any ideological/religious slant.]
We fell morally ill because we became used to saying something different from what we thought. We learned not to believe in anything, to ignore each other, to care only about ourselves. ... The previous regime -- armed with its arrogant and intolerant ideology -- reduced man to a force of production and nature to a tool of production. In this it attacked both their very substance and their mutual relationship. It reduced gifted and autonomous people to nuts and bolts of some monstrously huge, noisy, and stinking machine, whose real meaning is not clear to anyone. ... We had all become used to the totalitarian system and accepted it as an unchangeable fact and thus helped to perpetuate it. In other words, we are all -- though naturally to differing extents -- responsible for the operation of the totalitarian machinery; none of us is just its victim: we are all also its co-creators"
[From an article called The Need for a Discontinuity in (Economic) Thinking: The Role of Academe by Nungsari Ahmad Rahi, in a file named usmpkap.pdf. www.weim.com.my/PDF-Mainsite It deals with the need to change economic thinking to help work towards longer-term sustainable economic growth. S/He maintains that the academic community should be a source of diversity & creativity in thought, but that its role has been marginalised, which has several causes. This is quoted in the conclusion.]
Another site with the whole speech:
JOHN F. KENNEDY, 20 January 1961: "A new generation of Americans"
WINSTON CHURCHILL, 13 May 1940: "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat"
VACLAV HAVEL, 1 January 1990
He also said:
Because the regime is captive to its own lies, it must falsify everything. It falsifies the past. It falsifies the present, and it falsifies the future. It falsifies statistics. It pretends not to possess an omnipotent and unprincipled police apparatus. It pretends to respect human rights. It pretends to prosecute no one. It pretends to fear nothing. It pretends to pretend nothing.
- Vaclav Havel, "The Power of the Powerless" (1978)
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Australia, New South Wales, Sydney, English, photography, reading, natural history, land use, town planning, sustainability.