Facts, schmacts. Debunking the Voice power grab.

Facts, schmacts. Debunking the Voice power grab. By Geoffrey Blainey.

Crucial to the national debate is the health of Indigenous people. It is often proclaimed to be a matter of urgency, almost of shame, that they have a “life expectancy eight years shorter than non-Indigenous Australians”.

But that fact, standing on its own, is misleading. The life expectancy of us all, Aboriginal people included, has improved dramatically since 1788. Nearly every country in Africa has a much lower life expectation than Indigenous Australia. Even the EU displays more than an eight-year gap between member nations. There is even a wide gap between north and south England.

Today Aboriginal Australians have a life expectancy equal to that of Bulgaria and rural Romania. Their life expectancy is higher than that in Russia and Ukraine. It is about the same as the average citizen of the world. Indeed, it soon would be improved if those Aboriginal men aged 40 and older were not heavy smokers. …

Price spoke the truth, so they hate her:

I believe most Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are far, far better off today than if they were living in 1788. Price, after recently expressing a similar belief, was flayed by critics who had faint idea what daily life ashore was like before the coming of the First Fleet. Unfortunately, a minority of Aboriginal people still have to struggle with two different values and ways of life.

This land is infinitely more fruitful than it was in 1788, and most Aboriginal people are now the gainers. The whole globe gains too. In some years Australia produces enough food to sustain probably 100 million people in the world as a whole. In the past decade it has produced for at least one billion people the minerals with which to build aircraft, railways, motorways, ships, cars, power stations, schools, stadiums and city apartments. Likewise, here in this continent arose a democratic society that, for all its imperfections, offers liberty in a world where liberty is not normal. …

Most aboriginals:

On election night we often gathered from commentators the idea that most Aboriginal Australians lived in the Northern Territory or in remote tropical outposts to the east and west. In fact, NSW, especially Sydney and its far western hinterland, is the nation’s stronghold of Aboriginal people.

More live there than in any other state and territory; and an update from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows the surprising advances they have made in the 10 years from 2011 to 2021. Their life expectations are higher than the referendum booklet dismally reported. Of their houses, the overwhelming numbers are not overcrowded.

More than 40 per cent of these houses are owned outright or with a mortgage. The proportion of their students who pass year 12 or attend university and other tertiary institutions has soared.

Successful Aborig­inal leader Mundine, originally a tradie, was reared in one of these towns far west of Sydney. …

Remote settlements, jail, and the “stolen generations”:

How can the 1000 or more Aboriginal towns be helped? Have such tiny and remote towns a future? The question has to be asked again and again. It is an experiment rarely conducted in modern history — the creation of isolated towns that grow little of their own food, rely heavily on subsidies and social welfare, are mostly too small to attract a capable nurse, police officer or teacher, and provide few jobs for their poorly educated children. Most of these Aboriginal towns are too far apart to share amenities. They are also marred by family violence.

The Uluru statement laments the high numbers of Aboriginal men in jail but does not mention that so many are there because they bash the women of their own race. This message Price has emphasised. Without saying so too loudly, she knows the so-called Stolen Generations were often Aboriginal children who had to be rescued for the sake of their own safety and welfare.

Such remote and tiny towns can exist only in a nation that is wealthy enough to subsidise them on a generous scale. Yet many are eyesores, viewed by their few visitors as blots on the nation that allows them to exist.

One argument in their favour is that the older people wish to retain their own culture and to oppose assimilation by an alien culture. On the other hand, the recent censuses reveal that Christian pastors — mostly Aboriginal — are more influential here than in most suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne. …

Ruling class delusions:

Albanese’s view is of an Aboriginal Australia that was — for 60,000 or more years — a form of utopia. His vision owed much to historian Bruce Pascoe, an engaging speaker who by pretending to be Aboriginal tended to convince young people, and their teachers too, that he possessed an insider’s knowledge. Pascoe claimed the Aboriginal people invented democracy and that they lived in peace and prosperity until the Europeans invaded.

Obviously, the solution our ruling class will adopt is more censorship. What’s the bet that, in five years time, only their views are legal?