“We spend an enormous amount of time in this country navel-gazing about what kind of society we are. It seems that, on some occasions, we engage in a form of public fretting about what it really means to be an Australian. It always strikes me as rather unnecessary and rather odd and rather unproductive … You don’t write down what it means to be an Australian. You feel what it means to be an Australian.” ~ John HoWARd
Straya eh. Oh what a feeling.
What does patriotism mean to Australians? For some it’s just a love of the Australian landscape or wearing the Aussie colours at the cricket. But others find overt displays of patriotism a bit tacky, or even worry that it can sometimes have overtones of racism.
Waleed, Tim, Michael and Lynne. Discuss.
George Orwell once wrote that:
By ‘nationalism’ I mean first of all the habit of assuming that human beings can be classified like insects and that whole blocks of millions or tens of millions of people can be confidently labelled ‘good’ or ‘bad’(1). But secondly — and this is much more important — I mean the habit of identifying oneself with a single nation or other unit, placing it beyond good and evil and recognising no other duty than that of advancing its interests. Nationalism is not to be confused with patriotism. Both words are normally used in so vague a way that any definition is liable to be challenged, but one must draw a distinction between them, since two different and even opposing ideas are involved. By ‘patriotism’ I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force on other people. Patriotism is of its nature defensive, both militarily and culturally. Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.
Ghassan Hage wrote some stuff about (Australian) nationalism once too; in fact, crackademics like Hage have indeed spent an enormous amount of time navel-gazing about what kind of society Australia is, even — on some occasions — fretting in public about what it really means to be one of its members. It may be unnecessary, rather odd, and somewhat unproductive writing things about what it means to be an Australian, but then so is John HoWARd.
“Stop the Parasitic Illegals! Deport Illegals Now!”
On a final note, the Australian Protectionist Party is going to be expressing what it feels to be Australian in Sydney this Sunday by publicly fretting outside Villawood Detention Centre over the number of unAustralians being let into the country and given, like, heaps of free shit ‘n’ that. Last time I looked, the APP had formed a temporary coalition with Australian Zionists to protect Max Brenner from Sovietization.