A lot of criticism is waved toward Israel and Lebanon with regards they treat each other's civilian population. And quite rightly so.
But is Australia truly in a position where it can criticize these countries? If you ask me, not when the news today told us that 11 asylum seekers who were denied refuge in Australia on the grounds that they are not facing any danger back home have been killed upon returning to their homeland of Afghanistan.
And my point is that the Depeche Mode song quoted above seems to be true: people are people, history repeats itself, and at the bottom line we are all self centered bastards that couldn't care less about anyone else than ourselves. Australia is just lucky to be living in a land where the locals are fairly nice people and where other nations are far enough to not be a threat, but that is where the differences between Australians and, say, Israelis start and end.
In case you're after further proof, just have a look at the recent words of our beloved Prime Minister, Mr John Howard: In this day and age of global warming and the war on terror, to name just two of the lovelier things this world has to offer, he admits that his greatest worry is the price of gas. Nothing about dwindling energy supplies, just the pump price of gas.
It's true that paying more at the gas station is a pain, and it's true that especially in rural Australia many people have to burn lots of gas if they want to get anywhere, but really - is the pump price of gas the worst thing imaginable? Isn't that just a symptom of the fact that the age of cheap fossil fuels is coming to an end?
What annoys me the most are the comments you hear from all sorts of Liberal party members regarding the need to reduce pump prices. They all lack any shred of vision, failing to realize that whatever taxation cuts take place today or as much methanol you use to replace gas won't help much in the long term (and the not so long term, too) if no proper substitutes for fossil fuels are developed. Oddly enough, the development of replacements is not on anyone's agenda.
I just find this state of mind to represent total disrespect towards the Australian voter. Do they really think we're that dumb?
The answer is probably yes. Two yeses, actually: they do think we're dumb, and we are definitely dumb - we voted them in and we will be voting them in again in a year and a half with our investment property propelled selfishness.