|Australia's fading history|
Modern Australians are taught to be less than proud of their history. But in
between apologizing for things they didn't
do, and grovelling like some religious zealot who insists that we are born
in sin there are some things the cultural elites allow us some pride in -
provided the history is rewritten with an appropriate politically
150 years ago today, Australia witnessed its only civil uprising. The local
land owners formed the political power block (only land owners got to vote),
and didn't like their workers saying 'take this job and shovel it', and
wandering off to dig for gold in Ballarat. So they put pressure on the government to charge the
prospectors exorbitant licenses to 'encourage' them back to work.
Some 120 miners stood up to the local soldiers, refusing to pay the
exorbitant taxes imposed by a
They formed a stockade - a pathetic area little bigger than a residential
house-block, and reinforced by hastily constructed pikes. The stockade looked
more like a picket fence than a fort.
Then the soldiers came and the shooting started. 22 miners and 6 soldiers
were killed, the miners ran away and the uprising was crushed in less than 15
minutes. But it was, we are taught, the turning point - the conception for the
later birth of true Australian democracy.
150 years later, the event has become a grab-bag of political concerns.
The local Aborigines
opened the festivities. But the stockade had nothing to do with the Australian
Then it was hailed by some as a 'multicultural day'.
But the miners were not celebrating diversity, they were celebrating
unity. They were not interested in cultivating their differences, but simply
uniting against a common enemy - the Australian government.
The unions hailed it as a the formation of Australian unionism. But the
miners never asked that others be forced to give them money or on what terms -
they just didn't want the government stealing their money in the form
of 'prospecting licenses'.
And a commemorative walk is to be led by Terry Hicks - the father of
wannabe David Hicks. But the miners never advocated international terrorism, or
terrorism at all. They never sought to attack anyone. They just wanted to be
Johnny (no-flies-on-me) Howard resisted flying the flag at Parliament House
because he actually knew what it meant. For all of Johnny's commitment to
everyone having their own little picket fence around their residential block he
leads the highest taxing government in Australia's history. Today, we are taxed
at a rate which would have made even the wealthy squatters join the miners in
open rebellion. And Little Johnny would like to keep everyone very quiet about
He has little to worry about. As long as the various minority groups
frantically rewrite history, the truth will remain hidden - or at least barely
visible between the slats of the picket fence, and rendered inaudible by
the didgeridoo, the union slogans and the shrill incoherent rantings of
the multicultural lobby.