Leading article Australia
3 December 2022
With any luck, Australia should have its first indigenous prime minister within our lifetimes and it will be a conservative one. Only a conservative government with indigenous leadership, and only one with integrity and bravery and true conservative convictions, is capable of implementing policies that will successfully tackle chronic indigenous disadvantage. Or to use the vernacular, to ‘close the gap’. And this will only be possible if the prime minister or deputy prime minister is themselve an aboriginal, such is the putrid nature of identity politics that today’s conservatives must contend with.
The harsh reality is that the greatest blight on indigenous communities in Australia is the paternalistic quasi-communism introduced by Gough Whitlam and his acolyte, the starry-eyed leftist ‘Nugget’ Coombs, back in the 1970s. Under this preposterous fantasy, built on some ‘noble savage’ interpretation of the world that would have made Rousseau raise a sceptical eyebrow, Mr Coombs decreed that Aborigines could successfully inhabit two worlds, the ancient and the modern, and that somehow they would seamlessly blend the two into a successful socio-economic mix. Decades of poverty, alcoholism, domestic violence, child abuse, pornography, crime and misery have been the result of this fool’s hippy dreams and the failure of successive governments to dismantle what amount to communist ghettos across remote parts of northern Australia are a stain upon our nation. Until this indigenous socialism is dismantled, no amount of walking across the Harbour Bridge or smoking ceremonies will make a jot of difference.
The only way forward for these communities is a program encompassing private property ownership and encouraging individual ambition while dismantling the (often corrupt) fiefdoms and weaning the communities off crippling welfare. Jobs, education, dignity and opportunity are the only answers.
But decades of cowardice from all sides of politics have instead entrenched the welfare/victimhood mentality. To dismantle the gargantuan billion-dollar-a-year indigenous behemoth of bureaucratic stagnation and entitlement will require a conservative government with a strong majority and an even stronger stomach.
This week one of the most significant events in our nation’s race-relations history took place, appropriately, outside our federal parliament. Without written notes, speaking straight from the heart, Senator Jacinta Yangapi Nampijinpa Price, the Country Liberal party senator for the Northern Territory, spelled out her opposition to the Labor party’s proposed Indigenous Voice to Parliament.
Senator Price’s speech was insightful, pointing out that indigenous Australians are fed up with virtue-signalling and airy-fairy concepts, of being treated as different, and as somehow unable to be fully in control of their own destiny. It was poignant, pointing out that the Voice is simply ATSIC re-booted. It was tragic, lamenting those many marginalised Australians, indigenous and non-indigenous alike, who fall through the cracks. It was funny, mocking those ‘Gucci aborigines’ in their private airplanes flying in to tell remote communities how to live.
Senator Price clearly has the strength, the wisdom and the integrity to rise to the very top of Australian politics. She is a conservative warrior and is passionate about helping Aboriginal Australia, particularly the women and the children who have suffered so much abuse.
Her arguments are clear, concise, considered and come at personal cost – she has already been attacked by Noel Pearson as a ‘redneck’ – but what was so important is that as Senator Price made her comments, the bulk of the Nationals party stood behind her, including leader David Littleproud. This magazine has been highly critical of Mr Littleproud in the past, particularly on his climate change advocacy, but yesterday he deserved a new nickname – from now on he is David Much-to-be-Proud-of.
The Voice, however, would torpedo any chance of a conservative solution to indigenous disadvantage ever being implemented. This is because a left-leaning, undemocratic, unelected, race-based Voice would vehemently oppose the free market ideas that are urgently required in remote communities. Indeed, the very policies that are to blame for creating and perpetuating the current dismal state of indigenous affairs are those that will be permanently entrenched under a constitutionally-enshrined Voice.
The Voice, ironically and tragically, will guarantee that no conservative government will ever be able to introduce the very policies indigenous Australia deserves and desperately needs. Instead, Labor will never have to worry again about arguing a case or implementing crazy leftist policies, all they’ll have to do is lob it over to the Voice and, hey presto!, no parliament, to paraphrase Anthony Albanese, will dare oppose their demands.
Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price has the vision that Australia needs. She could even go all the way in our political system. But as she herself appears to recognise, a powerful political and legal body such as the Voice makes it almost certain that any policies she might actually manage to get up through our tough and adversarial parliamentary system to change the future for indigenous Australians would never get past the Voice.
That is the tragedy that those ‘conservatives’ who support a Voice are prepared to inflict upon this nation for the sake of selfish virtue-signalling. In order to empower an elite group of indigenous activists and bureaucrats, they would disempower those indigenous members of parliament – all eleven of them – who are prepared to devote their lives to a better outcome for indigenous Australia achieved through the democratic process.
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