Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

Australian Elites Equally Bonkers

The rural/urban divide is as pronounced in Australia as elsewhere.

There was a time when what I knew about Australia came from Crocodile Dundee movies. Aussies were good-natured straight shooters. Tough and self-sufficient, they saw the world clearly. They had no time for politically correct nonsense.

Alas, that was mostly fantasy. It turns out Australian journalists, politicians, and government employees are eerily similar to their brethren in the US, Canada, and the UK.

This class of people care about the same stuff. The problem is that the average person, especially those living outside major urban centers, considers that stuff ridiculous.

I’ve recently discussed the shameful conduct of James Cook University which, despite pesky ideas such as tenure and academic freedom, unlawfully fired a physics professor who voiced concern about Great Barrier Reef research (see here and here).

In the run-up to Australia’s federal election this Saturday, another news story illustrates that politics is as bonkers in that part of the world as elsewhere. Brunswick East Primary School, in Melbourne, has obliterated Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

The school’s newsletter, authored by principal Janet Di Pilla, announces that those occasions will henceforth be known as ‘Acknowledgment Days’ in order to be “as inclusive as possible” and to show that “we no longer subscribe to a binary world.”

Di Pilla further issued a public apology: “I am sorry that in the past we have offended some members of our community and I hope that this acknowledgment goes some way to address any hurt which has occurred in the past.”

Where did this woman, who is paid with tax dollars, get the idea that her job is to apologize for imaginary historical wrongs?

The students who attend this school are aged 5 to 13. In addition to having consulted parents, Di Pilla says she has spoken to “about ½ the students” regarding this matter. Really?

Perhaps her attention should have been elsewhere. An organization called BetterEducation compiles data about Aussie schools, ranking them according to performance.

A list of the Top Primary Schools in Melbourne can be found on its website here. 379 schools made it onto that “top primary school” list. The school run by Di Pilla is not among them.


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  • The school newsletter, containing the re-naming decision & rationale, may be downloaded here. See the bottom of page 2, and the top of page 3.
  • Melbourne school renames Mother’s Day to be more inclusive
  • No offence: Primary school in inner city Melbourne renames Mother’s Day stall ‘appreciation’ stall
  • Melbourne school renames Mother’s Day stall
  • To get a sense of the sometimes bitter rural/urban divide, see the Property Rights Australia website and Facebook page.
  • Australia is prone to droughts, so water management is a top concern for farmers. Topher Field calls the Murray-Darling Basin Authority “one of the most destructive government agencies ever to exist in Australia.” His series of YouTube videos about such matters, including one from 10 years ago, are illuminating.
  • Field recently wrote on Facebook: “The criticisms I level at the MDBA in this video are still valid to this day, and the predictions I made have all come true. This video proves that I (and MANY others) saw the disaster looming if the MDBA followed through on their plan, and we tried to warn them but they REFUSED to listen…It was OBVIOUS that the plan was going to be a disaster and the powers that be SHOULD have known better. They ignored me, they ignored MANY others (including highly credentialed scientists) and now they’re destroying lives, destroying our natural environment by over-watering some of our forests and flood plains as well as killing millions of our fish, and they’re pushing our farmers to walk off the land… or much worse…some of the people responsible for this disaster are still in politics and still running for re-election yet again. They have paid no price for their utter incompetence, for their complete failure to do their job properly and with due care…Do not vote for anyone responsible for this disaster. They were warned, they should have known better, it was their JOB and their OBLIGATION to get it right, and they failed.”
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This entry was posted on May 15, 2019 by in children, education, ethical & philosophical and tagged , .
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