Who else is guilty of Rainbow Washing?

Rainbow Washing is the process of using rainbow motifs to claim allyship with the LGBTQIA+ community in the place of any tangible action, and is common among individuals, governments and corporations. But can we use the term to describe another form of questionable behaviour?

Can we use it to describe the process by which LGBTQIA+ issues are promoted to distract people from unethical behaviour of organisations in other spheres?

AGL is the most famous perpetrator of this form of Rainbow Washing.

The Australian energy company was recently awarded Gold Employer status for LGBTQ+ inclusion at the AWEI Awards, while simultaneously earning the title of Australia’s biggest domestic contributor to climate change by Greenpeace. Greenpeace argues that AGL emitted 42.2 million tonnes of carbon emissions in 2019-2020. Greenpeace data confirms that the energy company creates,

“…24.6% of electricity sector emissions and 8% of Australia’s total emissions, which primarily comes from the coal burned at the energy giant’s three coal-burning power stations: Liddell, Bayswater, and Loy Yang A. AGL’s own data confirms that 85% of energy generated by the gentailer comes from burning coal.”

At the same time, AGL boasts publicly that:

“This is the third year we have been awarded Gold Employer status, and the fifth year that we have participated in the AWEI. Our employee-driven LGBTQ+ network, AGL Shine, was created in 2014. The network focuses on providing a safe and inclusive environment for all our employees – while also advocating internally and externally for gender inclusion beyond the heteronormative binary.”

Political correctness?

Ironically, organisations such as AGL could be accused of harnessing political correctness to protect their public image. Ironic, because the defenders of fossil fuels are often the loudest critics of ‘political correctness’. Essentially, organisations like AGL promote their diversity and inclusion credentials to stifle criticism of their environmental destruction by saying,

‘You can’t criticise us because then you’re criticising LGBT+ people, and that’s not politically correct’.

Consequently, LGBT+ people are being used and exploited in order to allow AGL to continue polluting.

Tim Wilson

To what extent did Australian former member of parliament Tim Wilson benefit from this definition of Rainbow Washing?

Wilson is gay and was widely praised for his role in the successful campaign to approve same-sex marriage in Australia, but to what extent did he exploit his sexuality to stay in power?

Wilson was involved in various controversies. There was no mainstream media investigation into strong allegations that Wilson was involved in immoral activities in the parliamentary prayer room with other prominent LNP politicians. The opposition Labor Party also called for his sacking due to alleged conflicts of interest and a “massive breach” of parliamentary conventions surrounding the use of a taxpayer-funded inquiry to spearhead partisan campaigning against Labor’s policy on franking credits. Then, of course, was yet another controversy when he claimed $37,494 from taxpayers in travel allowance after leaving Melbourne’s brutal COVID-19 lockdown for 95 nights during 2021.

Did Rainbow Washing keeping Wilson in power, or did former Prime Minister Scott Morrison?

The Easy Way Out

Promoting diversity and inclusion is easier than taking real action on other issues. Creating a safe space for LGBTQIA+ people is encouraging, but let’s not beat around the bush – how hard is it to be inclusive in 2022?

Encouraging diversity essentially means treating everyone equally. Even if AGL does genuinely support LGBTQIA+ people in the workplace, what exactly does this entail?

It involves affirming the Darlington Statement which articulates the human rights demands of people with intersex variations. A statement written by someone else.

Does it involve AGL, or other organisations, paying a diversity trainer or consultant to conduct training sessions on diversity with employees, or hosting social days to celebrate diversity?

Does it involve allowing all staff to choose their own pronouns and updating HR documents, or posting the rainbow motif on all social media platforms?

It might even include sponsoring a float in Mardi Gras or other LGBT+ events. It might involve targeted employment or other active steps. They might even make a difference to the lives of employees. But how much profit does AGL make in a year, and what percentage of that profit is spent on LGBT+ inclusion?

Either way, winning an award for diversity inclusion does not change the fact that AGL is still Australia’s biggest polluter.

Coca Cola

Joining AGL are multinational corporations such as Coca Cola, PepsiCo and Nestle. Coca Cola was ranked the world’s No.1 plastic polluter by Break Free From Plastic in 2020, ahead of rival PepsiCo, in second, and Nestle in third. The BFFP audit found that Coca Cola’s beverage bottles were the most frequently found discarded on beaches, rivers, parks and other litter sites in 51 of 55 nations surveyed. Last year it was the most frequently littered bottle in 37 countries, out of 51 surveyed. It was found to be worse than PepsiCo and Nestle combined: Coca-Cola branding was found on 13,834 pieces of plastic, with PepsiCo branding on 5,155 and Nestlé branding on 8,633, according to the audit.

At the same time, all three corporations boast of their inclusion and diversity policies.

Coca Cola claims that:

Diversity, equity and inclusion are at the heart of our values and our growth strategy and play an important part in our company’s success.

PepsiCo

PepsiCo, meanwhile, boasts on its website…

“…in 2015 PepsiCo demonstrated its commitment to LGBT+ consumers through its rainbow-colored Doritos.”

That’s right. It’s primary claim to LGBT+ inclusion and ethical business practices is rainbow coloured Doritos. This is a perfect example of Rainbow Washing. A perfect example of superficial change and marketing spin designed to protect the corporation from its plastic waste. Don’t forget, the packaging adorned with rainbows is soft plastic.

PepsiCo does go on to say that each rollout of the rainbow Dorritos raised funds for “…organizations including the It Gets Better Project, Fundación en Movimiento, Casa 1 and Cuenta Conmigo, Diversidad Sexual Incluyente A.C.”

Further to this, PepsiCo has also supported the LGBT+ community through social media campaigns to engage consumers and sponsorships of local pride parades around the world.

What were we saying about rainbow motifs and sponsorship?

Another word for ‘social media campaigns’ is ‘slacktivism’.

Furthermore, the funds donated to those causes were only available if consumers bought the product. Thus, a large percentage of the funds came from the public, not solely from PepsiCo.

Let’s also remember that Dorritos are very unhealthy and this initiative was implemented in North America and Mexico (which is technically in North America) and these two countries have some of the world’s highest rates of obesity, especially among children. The rainbow is thus also distracting the public from the company’s contribution to a public health crisis.

PepsiCo also reminds visitors to its website that:

In March 2019, the Human Rights Campaign awarded PepsiCo a perfect score for our LGBT+ workplace initiatives and designated us the Best Place to Work for LGBTQ equality. In the same year, PepsiCo was one of the world’s worst plastic polluters. A perfect example of Rainbow Washing.

Nestle

Nestle came in third for plastic pollution and carries an extensive list of diversity achievements on its website. Among these boasts are

Support of the UN’s LGBTI Standard of Conduct for Business.

Running workshops and e-learning for employees. See above.

Equal parental support benefits to same-sex and different-sex couples.

Partnering with LGBT+ advocacy groups throughout the world.

Offering unlimited financial support for medical costs to employees undergoing gender transition. Also in Brazil, we offer legal and administrative support to transgender employees who are in the process of recertifying their name and gender.

One might ask, how can a company afford to do all of this for its LGBT+ employees?

By covering the world in plastic waste.

Again, this is all encouraging, but Nestle ignores the fact that its vast plastic pollution destroys the natural environment on which everyone relies, regardless of their gender or sexuality. Praising efforts to promote diversity and inclusion while destroying the planet on which those people live is another perfect example of Rainbow Washing.

Image: Mateus Campos Felipe

How is this legal?

A stranger enters your home.

They throw over your furniture. They tear down paintings and artworks. They break objects and rip items out of draws. They smash your possessions and make a mess that will take for ever to clean up.

They steal what is most vaulable.

Days later, the police catch them. Mug shots and finger prints are taken. Their identities are confirmed. You don’t know them, nor did you invite them into your home. You certainly don’t want them to keep your valuables.

They are not punished.

They do not have to return the valuables they stole.

They do not have to pay a fine.

They do not spend any time in jail.

They don’t even have to clean up the mess, or pay for someone else to do so.

They don’t have to fix or pay for the damage they caused.

This could never happen in Australia could it?

It does.

Every day.

Outsiders steal from Australia. They take what is valuable. They cause enormous and often irreparable damage and refuse to fix what they broke. They also refuse to clean up the mess they made, or pay for it to be done.

Who are these people?

They are mining companies.

Australia’s mining industry is 86% foreign owned. They get away with his behaviour because they have spent over $541 million in the last ten years on lobbying Australian governments.

In addition, foreign companies hold 10 out of 14 position on both the Minerals Council board and the Queensland Resources Council board.

A 2011 report estimated 83% of mine production in Australia was attributable to foreign owners, including BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto. yes, even ‘Aussie’ companies such Rio Tinto and BHP, which called itself ‘The Big Australian’. BHP is 76% foreign owned, and Rio Tinto is 83%. Between them they constitute 70% of listed mining company resources.

This means that less than 10% of mining projects are solely owned by Australian owned companies, while over 90% have some level of foreign ownership. Foreign investment accounts for 86% share of ownership of major mining projects, including 26% from the US and 27% from the UK.2.

If the mining companies are based off shore, the profits go off shore. Australians are left to clean up the mess.

AGL creates gender-neutral coal.

Energy company AGL has been applauded for creating the world’s first gender-neutral coal as a source of energy for commercial and residential use throughout Australia.

“AGL is a leader in corporate diversity and inclusion, and gender-neutral coal is just another exciting initiative in our quest to embrace the LGBTQ+ community,” announced the company, on the same day thousands of school students across the country protested against AGL and other fossil fuel companies.

“Gender-neutral coal does not identify as male, female or any other gender. It was developed by our outstanding research and development team, in close consultation with our marketing department, and cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Every Aussie should be enormously proud of this, and the fact that Australia has the largest per-capita carbon footprint of any country on earth.”

AGL then explained that gender-neutral coal damages the planet as much as gender-specific coal, and helps the company to debunk myths that the mining industry is male-dominated and not welcoming of other genders. It also looks like ‘normal’ coal

“…but we transport it in rainbow-coloured containers.”

It is not the first accolade AGL has received in this sphere. The company was recently awarded Gold Employer status for LGBTQ+ inclusion at the AWEI Awards while simultaneously earning the title of Australia’s biggest domestic contributor to climate change by Greenpeace. Greenpeace argues that AGL emitted 42.2 million tonnes of carbon emissions in 2019-2020. Greenpeace data confirms that the energy company creates,

“…24.6% of electricity sector emissions and 8% of Australia’s total emissions, which primarily comes from the coal burned at the energy giant’s three coal-burning power stations: Liddell, Bayswater, and Loy Yang A. AGL’s own data confirms that 85% of energy generated by the gentailer comes from burning coal.”

At the same time, AGL boasts publicly that:

“This is the third year we have been awarded Gold Employer status, and the fifth year that we have participated in the AWEI. Our employee-driven LGBTQ+ network, AGL Shine, was created in 2014. The network focuses on providing a safe and inclusive environment for all our employees – while also advocating internally and externally for gender inclusion beyond the heteronormative binary.”

The announcement provoked a mixed reaction.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Energy Minister Angus Taylor and Environment Minister Sussan Ley welcomed the news, despite being famously conservative and reluctant to embrace non-heteronormative agendas. The three leaders applauded AGL for using the LGBTQ+ community to distract Australians from their environmental destruction, and thanked the company for giving the Australian delegation something tangible to take to COP26 in Glasgow later this month.

Critics argue that gender-neutral coal is not real, and never will be. They claim that coal is an inanimate object with no gender, and thus cannot be declared gender-neutral. Many suspect the announcement is yet another attempt to win public favour while the rest of the world appears to be transitioning to renewable energy.

AGL rejected assertions that gender-neutral coal is not a real thing, stating;

“It’s as real as Clean Coal”

Angus Taylor launches Pay Now Pay Later.

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor has announced a world-first national energy supply system called Pay Now Pay Later, under which Australians will pay more for their electricity in the present while paying for climate change in the future.

Pay Now Pay Later is a game-changer,” boasted Taylor, from outside a newly-opened coal mine.

“The world-first energy consumption system ensures that Australians will pay higher electricity bills in the present and will pay for the environmental costs of the energy grid well into the future. We will soon be the only country in the world which forces its citizens to pay with their wallets and their futures.”

Taylor was confident that Australians would embrace Pay Now Pay Later, just as they have embraced systems such as AfterPay, BPay, Before Pay, Buy Now Pay Later, Pay It Forward and even the old-fashioned Lay-By.

“Plus, it’s not like they have a choice,” he scoffed.

The system relies on one central component: the burning of fossil fuels. Taylor and his LNP party will ensure that the majority of Australian businesses and households are forced to secure their energy from fossil fuels such as coal and coal seam gas, rather than from renewable energy. Consumers will therefore pay more for their electricity now, and will contribute the destruction of the planet.

“We will continue with our plans to open new coal mines, to push the fallacy of clean coal, and to burn fossil fuels to supply energy to Australian businesses and households. We will do everything in our power to ensure that the majority of Australia’s energy grid is supplied by fossil fuels.”

For the system to succeed, renewable energy such as wind and solar must be suppressed for as long as possible.

“We will employ myriad tactics to suppress renewable energy. We will utilise our propaganda wing, which Australians know as NewsCorp, to spread fear and misinformation regarding renewable energy, and to perpetuate the falsehood that fossil fuels will keep energy prices down for the everyday Aussie. We also thank former rugby league player Darren Lockyer for his valuable service in this regard.”

“What’s more, Pay Now Pay Later will have the greatest impact on people who are not even paying for electricity now – children.”

Taylor also promised to use the COVID-19 pandemic as an excuse to funnel more taxpayers money into the fossil fuel industry, for the benefit of fossil fuel companies, under the guise of a gas led recovery.

“We will also continue to wind back schemes such as the solar rebate for Australian households, and will instead use this public money to prop up the fossil fuel industry, most of which is foreign owned.”

Australians will pay later as climate change causes more severe storms, droughts, floods and fires, which will cost the country millions of dollars. Australians will also pay later when the international economy deals primarily in renewable energy.

“While Australian energy consumers will Pay Now, the whole world will Pay Later.”

Adding his support to the scheme was current Treasurer Josh Frydenberg, who helped lay the groundwork for the scheme as long as six years ago. Frydenberg used his power as federal Minister for the Environment to prevent energy company AGL from dumping coal and embracing renewable energy in 2016.

His underhand tactics were exposed in an article in The Saturday Paper by Mike Seccombe on July 10, 2021, and they centre on the appointment of chief executive Andy Vessey. The article outlines how Frydenberg called board members of AGL personally and pressured them to remove Vessey because the boss planned to transition the company to renewable energy, and to close the Liddell coal-fired power plant in the NSW Hunter Valley, which is described as:

“…one of Australia’s oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power stations.”

Prime Minister Scott Morrison was also present at the announcement and was asked for a comment. All he could do was smirk and hold up a lump of coal.

Image: Darren England

EXCLUSIVE: Australian government cures COVID-19.

EXCLUSIVE: The Australian government is being hailed as a saviour after announcing its COVID Capture scheme to end the global pandemic. The world-first scheme will capture all of the COVID-19 from the air and store it in the ground.

“This plan is magnificent in its simplicity,” revealed the Prime Minister Scott Morrison in exclusive correspondence with this publication.

“The plan involves using state-of-the-art technology, as well as butterfly nets, to catch all of the COVID-19 particles that are floating through the air, then store them in the ground. Patients with COVID-19 can also just dig a hole and cough straight into the soil. Particles will stay in the ground forever, or until a foreign-owned mining company digs them up while exploiting fossil fuel reserves. However, we have been advised by Craig Kelly that if the COVID-19 particles attach themselves to fossil fuel particles, they pose absolutely no threat to the wold’s population – just as Clean Coal is 100% safe for the earth.”

“Once we’ve captured all of the COVID-19, we can return to normal.”

The scheme mirrors Carbon Capture and Storage, a technique touted as a ‘technology’ that could help lower carbon emissions. According to experts such as the Climate Council, however:

  • Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is unproven and expensive.
  • Despite billions of dollars being spent in Australia and overseas, no CCS project has yet been delivered on time, on budget, or to agreed performance.
  • The quickest and cheapest way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is to stop burning coal, gas and oil and replace them with renewables.

Despite this, the government, under the leadership of Greg Hunt (Health), Sussan Ley (Environment) and Angus Taylor (Energy) will proceed with COVID Capture immediately.

“We will mobilise the entire Australian population in this effort. After all, we’re on a war footing and that means we will utilise our defence forces, plus school children and Teachers, the unemployed, those receiving welfare payments, and even doctors, nurses and ambulance workers. The latter will be freed up because no one will suffer from COVID-19 anymore, and our medical facilities will be virtually empty.”

“It really is a genius plan – much like Carbon Capture.”

The highly-touted scheme was invented after other responses to the pandemic proved ineffective, and forced half of Australia to be in some form of lockdown at the time of writing.

“We considered a national vaccine rollout, but that was too hard,” conceded Morrison.

“We tried vaccinating people with slogans, but that didn’t work.”

“We tried lockdowns, but they proved unpopular in focus groups.”

“We called in the army to shoot the virus, but somehow that didn’t work.”

“As a result, we are convinced that COVID Capture is the most efficient, sensible, reasonable long-term strategy for defeating the pandemic.”

Morrison declared the initiative one of the greatest achievements in Australian history.

“This is a momentous occasion for all Australians. Aussies should be proud that this great nation gave the world Carbon Capture, and can be equally proud that we have given the world COVID Capture.”

Image: Susan Gold

AGL awarded Gold Status for including LGBTQIA+ people.

AGL has been officially recognised for actively including the LGBTQ+ community in its destruction of the planet. The energy company was awarded Gold Employer status for LGBTQ+ inclusion at the AWEI Awards while simultaneously earning the title of Australia’s biggest domestic contributor to climate change by Greenpeace.

Greenpeace argues that AGL emitted 42.2 million tonnes of carbon emissions in 2019-2020. Greenpeace data confirms that the energy company creates,

“…24.6% of electricity sector emissions and 8% of Australia’s total emissions, which primarily comes from the coal burned at the energy giant’s three coal-burning power stations: Liddell, Bayswater, and Loy Yang A. AGL’s own data confirms that 85% of energy generated by the gentailer comes from burning coal.”

At the same time, AGL boasts publicly that:

“This is the third year we have been awarded Gold Employer status, and the fifth year that we have participated in the AWEI. Our employee-driven LGBTQ+ network, AGL Shine, was created in 2014. The network focuses on providing a safe and inclusive environment for all our employees – while also advocating internally and externally for gender inclusion beyond the heteronormative binary.”

Data from the environmental activist group indicates that:

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Lesbians

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Gay people

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Bisexual people

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Trans people

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Queer people

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Intersexed people

AGL is accelerating the climate crisis for Asexual people

AGL is also accelerating the climate crisis for hetero-normative people and for any other possible definition within the gender and sexuality spectrum that has not been acknowledged above.

The company reinforced its commitment to treating everyone on the planet equally.

“AGL understands that the natural environment in crucial to the survival, prosperity and wellbeing of every single person on the planet, regardless of gender, sexuality, race, religion, colour, age or nationality. This is why we have ensured that no one single group or sub group of Australian society or any other global society is discriminated against by our destruction of the natural environment.”

“We will all suffer together.”

AGL is the biggest polluter in a country with the highest per capita carbon footprint on the planet.

Critics of the energy giant highlighted the futility of supporting the rights of one particular group of society, when every group in society will suffer from the burning of fossil fuels, to which AGL replied:

“Even toxic rain makes rainbows.”

Image: Vector Stock

LNP destroys highly-paid occupation.

The Liberal National Party (LNP) is being blamed for killing off one of Australia’s most lucrative careers after it forced fossil fuel lobbyists out of work.

“The LNP is the fossil fuel lobby,” stated a representative of the resources industry.

“We don’t need lobbyists advocating on our behalf in Canberra anymore.”

Fossil fuel lobbyists were until recently a common feature of Parliament House, and sought meetings with politicians on all sides to persuade them to create policies favourable to activities such as coal mining, natural gas and coal seam gas extraction. The lobbyists were highly-skilled operators who earned substantial salaries courtesy of the enormous profits of resource companies. They also represented some of the most influential people in Australia such as Gina Rinehart and Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest.

That has all changed.

“All of our lobbyists were given substantial redundancy payments in recognition of their valuable contribution to our cause, and invited to seek alternative employment, because the LNP is now firmly under the control of the fossil fuel industry,” continued the spokesperson.

“Politicians from Morrison down now take orders directly from Gina and Twiggy.”

Experts suggest the LNP became a branch of the fossil fuel industry when Tony Abbott became Prime Minister. It wavered slightly under Malcolm Turnbull, and has strengthened under Scott Morrison. Many claim the close relationship started during the era of John Howard, like so many of Australia’s current ills.

“Tony is a great advocate for coal,” the spokesperson explained. “He is so committed to coal that he rode his bike all over the country to promote coal mining, and Matt Canavan is another disciple. Others like Keith Pitt and Angus Taylor are also devoted to fossil fuels, so any LNP member who is not will never be heard.”

“That said, it’s not just the LNP who have made lobbyists redundant. Joel Fitzgibbon is under the thumb of coal, and Labor as a whole will not commit to ruling out coal as an energy source. If Labor do manage to win the next federal election, our lobbyists may be called upon gain, but as of now, the job of the fossil fuel lobbyist is done.”

As for the plight of the lobbyists themselves:

“One of our former lobbyists has seen the writing on the wall, and last I heard he was working for a solar energy company.”

Image: Mark Nolan

Does China need to invade Australia?

The drums of war are beating. Australia is preparing for war with China as politicians and senior bureaucrats warn of armed conflict with the emerging superpower. Citizens are stockpiling weapons or boycotting their local Chinese restaurant and the tabloid media is disseminating fear to increase sales.

But would China ever invade Australia militarily? Would it ever need to?

China’s global ambitions are undeniable. Its construction of islands in the South China Sea and its actions in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Tibet and Xinjiang indicate plans to expand its influence. Counties throughout Africa, the Caribbean and the South Pacific are also being heavily courted, and China watched on with glee as its major rival self destructed under the disaster of Trump’s presidency. Boris and Brexit must also have pleased Xi Jinping.

China will not need to launch a military attack on Australia because the land Down Under is following Britain and The USA down a path of self destruction. China simply needs to wait and pick off the weakened state when the time is right.

Numbers

China can dominate Australia numerically. Millions of Chinese people comprise the diaspora which has created entrenched communities in Australia, as in other countries. Chinese people came to dig for gold in the 1860s, and since then to seek better opportunities for their families. Chinese influence will continue to grow as the number of migrants, students and tourists from China continues to grow.

Economics and trade

Chinese dominance of Australia will be achieved primarily through economics and trade. China is Australia’s biggest trading partner – and statements from Beijing remind Australia that it is the junior partner in this relationship. Indeed, when the Australian government made ill-timed and thinly-veiled racist comments towards China recently, Beijing imposed restrictions on Australian exports, and many Australian businesses suffered significantly. Some of the comments mirrored those of former US president Donald Trump, and were deliberately designed to appeal to the same demographic: ignorant, racist, narrow-minded, bigoted, lowly educated citizens whose influence has grown in Australia in recent years.

Australia has itself to blame for this situation. Australia has a ‘dumb’ economy. The nation exports almost nothing that requires a university degree to make, and its exports consist mainly of natural resources from mining, and the products of agriculture. Australia’s refusal, inability or reluctance to diversify its economy has made it dependant upon China, and this grants China economic control. It is also another reason that China does not need to invade Australia militarily.

One economic opportunity Australia continues to squander is renewable energy. Intelligent countries, including China, recognise the future economic as well as environmental opportunities inherent in renewable energy, but Australia remains fixated on fossil fuels which will destroy the environment and the economy.

The abundant sun light which attracts so many tourists to the land Down Under each year, especially from China, could be captured as solar energy and even exported for profit, but the fossil fuel industry controls the current government, and the semi-literate Australian mainstream believes the government’s rhetoric about the need for fossil fuels in Australia’s energy market. This is a situation entirely of Australia’s making, and one which weakens the country and makes it susceptible to Chinese dominance.

Education

Academia and intelligence are not prized in Australian culture. This is the reverse in China. Public education is poorly funded in Australia and more money appears to be stripped from government schools each year, especially under a conservative government. There are young Chinese people, studying at Chinese schools in China, with higher standards of English literacy than native-speaking Australian students studying at schools in Australia. Many Australian students don’t read, and won’t read. Their parents don’t appear concerned, the students are not concerned, and both major parties continue to strip money from public education and to further damage literacy rates across the country. Numeracy rates also continue to fall in Australia, and without succumbing to national stereotypes, China’s prowess in mathematics is well known.

In addition, many young Australians lack resilience. Too many primary and secondary students are diagnosed with stress and anxiety disorder, ADD, ADHD and myriad other academic or behavioural conditions. Some students genuinely suffer from these conditions, but many don’t. Australian society has allowed the over-diagnosis of these conditions, and a generation lacking resilience will inherit this country, making it ripe for the picking from a country that does not allow the same exceptions for its students.

A solution to this problem is to fund schools adequately, and to increase wages for teachers – as a starting point.

In a globalised world, Australia is weakened. Young Australians now compete for careers with youth from across the globe, including China, and need to form habits of resilience and dedication in their daily lives in order to protect their own futures and the future of the country.

Universities

Disrespect for academia extends to tertiary education in Australia. Public universities are inadequately funded, and this has further weakened the country. Universities are subsequently forced to operate as businesses and chase international fee paying students, most of whom come from China. Lecturers are pressured to award qualifications to international students even if they fail, because universities rely on their continued income. University staff tell tales of students from overseas, and from Australia, who lack the necessary English literacy skills to pass a course, but are awarded qualifications regardless because the universities need the money. The result is a decline in academic standards which will eventually devalue the qualifications international students have paid a fortune to receive. Soon, international students will seek degrees in other countries, and another lucrative source of income to Australia will be lost. This is a situation of Australia’s making.

Poorly funded tertiary education creates another problem for Australia – brain drain. If the country’s best and brightest are denied opportunities for research in Australia, they will take their intelligence overseas.

Historical pragmatism

China is not a coloniser. Not traditionally anyway. History reveals China’s focus on establishing trade and extracting resources from other lands instead of colonising those lands. Colonisation requires the invading power to manage the lands they invade and to manage the government, as well as transport, health, education, communications and other public services, which all require personnel, money, time and effort. China knew it could still enjoy the economic benefits of dominance over other lands without having to deal with the mess of governing the country. It is likely to do so with Australia.

Australia withdraws from Eurovision Song Contest.

Fans of Australian music are distraught after waking to the news that the country will no longer participate in the enormously popular Eurovision Song Contest. The country’s nominated contestant, Montaigne, has been officially withdrawn from the 2021 edition, and the government has steadfastly refused to sanction the participation of any other singer in the international extravaganza at any time in the future.

In the face of scathing criticism across social media platforms, Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, Paul Fletcher, justified his government’s shock decision.

“Australia contributes so little to the overall voting tally of the Eurovision Song Contest every year that there is no point us taking part. We have never won the event so we should leave it to countries who have won the event and who collect more votes to take responsibility for the survival of the competition.”

Average Australians and music devotees slammed these comments.

“The Australian government is blatantly ignoring the evidence,” claimed one outraged fan. “Dami Im finished second in 2016 and we’ve had three more top 10 finishes – look at the facts Minister!”

Other comments were just as negative:

“We may have a smaller population, but we actually got a lot more votes than bigger nations…open your eyes Fletcher!”

“Absolute disgrace – makes me ashamed to be an Aussie”

” gov totally out of touch with Aussies. They must go!”

“Lame excuse. Lame decision. Lame govt”

“Wake up to the modern world – or get out of government”

Experts also fear that if Australia does not embrace the contest, it will become an international pariah and that this could impact negatively on so many aspects of daily life in the country.

Minister Fletcher thanked the organisers of the event for inviting Australia into the competition in 2015, but explained that the land Down Under no longer shared the values of the majority of European nations.

“Most of these countries are transitioning to modern technology with a whole host of new devices which can create and share music, but we in Australia will continue to rely on devices like cassette tapes and CD players.”

“We will not be pressured by outsiders, or even by citizens in our own country, to embrace any of this new technology – nor will be brainwashed into thinking that this technology represents the future. Even if Australia is the only country in the world using cassette tapes in the near future – we will continue to use cassette tapes.”

Minister Fletcher also explained that the decision supported his party’s policy of allocating only minimal funding to Arts and Entertainment.

“We believe this money could be better spent on a CD deck in a mining truck, or a juke box in the break room of a coal seam gas site.”

Image:www.eurovisionworld.com

Scott Morrison recruits Darren Lockyer.


Prime Minister Scott Morrison has appointed former rugby league player Darren Lockyer as the federal Minister for Women due to Lockyer’s dedication to the rights of women. The appointment ensures that the Liberal National Party will always contain one male member who has been involved in a controversy surrounding sexual assault.

Morrison persuaded the former Australian captain to join the coalition while they were both attending a summit to advance the interests of the fossil fuel industry. The prime minister was particularly attracted to Lockyer’s ability to make light of accusations of sexual assault.

“How good is Darren Lockyer!,” Morrison gloated while announcing the appointment.

“You know I love my footy, and I love Darren, even though he never played for the Sharkies,” he smirked.

“But no, in all seriousness, I’m very excited to announce Mr Lockyer as the new Minister for Women because he is a great role model for young Australian men who has a great empathy for women.”

The Queensland State of Origin hero created controversy in 2004 when he joked about an alleged gang rape involving players from the Canterbury Bulldogs team. As guest speaker at a function in Brisbane, Lockyer commented:

“St George, they won 11 premierships with one Raper. Imagine how many Canterbury will win.”

Morrison said good fortune led him the the new appointment.

“Gina ordered me to attend a conference for the resources sector in Australia, and after Rupert agreed, I cancelled all my other appointments and attended. Luckily, Darren was there in his role as ambassador for the coal seam gas and wider fossil fuel industry, so I chatted to him during the lunch break and invited him to Canberra.”

The smirk returned when Morrison explained:

“I did have to remind him though that I’m now the captain of Team Australia.”

The former Bronco will begin his new role immediately, and he is looking forward to the challenge.

“I love women,” he stated.

“I love making jokes about their suffering too, so when Scotty asked me to be his Minister for Women, I said yes straight away.”

Lockyer will work alongside a special group formed in response to recent allegations of sexual assault and bullying of women in parliament house. The group contains politicians such as Christian Porter, Barnaby Joyce, Peter Dutton, Alan Tudge and George Christensen, and will report directly to Morrison – except when the prime minister needs to claim plausible deniability.

Image: http://www.abc.net.au