In a blaze of Patriotic fervour.




Our arrival in Australia 1956


You would have to feel sorry for our Prime Minister. Ever since he took over from the previous PM, Tony Abbott, because of an endless row of negative Polls, Malcolm Turnbull’s popularity is worse, obstinately stuck in the same drift sands of his predecessor. No matter what the policy, or how he twists and turns, it all turns to an uninspiring porridge of lukewarm indecisions. The light is slowly being turned off.

His latest attempt to pull his Government out of the never never of political defeat, he  turned once again to his voters assuaging the idea that we need all to become far more “patriotic’, far more ‘Real Australian.’ In this endeavour he is clearly appealing to the largest denominator, grabbing some good old fashioned Aussie values. The values that stood the test of time. Bradman Cricket, Phar Lap, the Mother tongue of English language, the spirit of Anzacs and standing up for flag and National Anthem. Oi, oi oi, Aussie, and all that stuff.

There is now feeling of desperation seeping in. With latest poll showing our Turnbull to be seven point behind the opposition, he wants to take the wind out of his adversary, Tony Abbott’s sails with a good old fashioned appeal to ” True Australian Values.” and sharpening this by making the rules of obtaining citizenship harder.  Migrants will need to wait for a number of years and have a good grasp of English together with doing a test on a suitable understanding and uncritical acceptance of all things “Australian,” before they can apply for citizenship.

It will also make a handy appeal to the One Nation Party of Pauline Hanson and possibly filch voters away. I feel this latest from Turnbull is racially tinged, and aimed at making migrants feel inadequate or less than equal by hinting that Australian values are somehow so much better and, that any feelings by migrants of their homeland’s cultural values ought better be left behind.  We need you to totally fall in line with us, or go home, is what our PM. Turnbull seems to be saying.

When we arrived none of us spoke much English, and it took a while to realise that English was even spoken in Australia. It took persistence to accept the foreign slang as actual English. It wasn’t all that rare even then, that in public, migrants were told to speak English only. My father was told in the bus once to stop talking in yabba, yabba, yabba (Dutch) and  speak bloody English. My parents never lost the love of their home-country. How could anyone even loose it? They always felt that Holland was their home-country but they also accepted Australia as their new home. It takes time. When my father retired they decided to go back home. Why not? Don’t many Australians make England their new home or Holland, the US? Over a million Australians live permanently overseas.

The appeal to becoming Patriotic is just silly and will make Australia look even less tolerant. One wonders what the loyalties of the only real original Australians , the aboriginals, ought to be pitched at, their killer overlords?

How we still cling to those Anglo ideas of the past, loyalty to a foreign Queen, despite most of us now having been born elsewhere. Why are we still a monarchy?  What is it about the ‘value of fear’ that we so love? What about encouraging change, move forward? Future Australians are now coming from everywhere, including The Sudan, Nigeria, Somalia. They too, in time will also become ‘real Australians’ and add to this wonderful mixture of all that we call home, Australia. I can’t wait for their national dishes to appear in our Cafes and restaurants. Do people still eat that soapy Kraft Cheddar embedded in silver foil, or Tasty cheese, Heinz tinned spaghetti?

How much better if our Prime Minister had used the opportunity for ‘tolerance, acceptance, and greater empathy towards others, instead of this silly national pitch for drum banging and ‘patriotism’.


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18 Responses to “In a blaze of Patriotic fervour.”

  1. Yvonne Says:


    Liked by 2 people

  2. DisandDat Says:

    Spot on. Another brilliant blog that makes so much sense. Gerard has a great way with words. They must come from a great thingking mind ! Bravo, keep it up. All the way with GO


    • gerard oosterman Says:

      What does Turnbull actually say? Should we learn intolerance towards refugees, encourage them to give up trying to escape the horrors that we are helping to create. Did Turnbull decide to send even more soldiers to the Middle East only a few weeks ago?


  3. berlioz1935 Says:

    An excellent post, Gerard. I’m sure, I would not be accepted anymore as a new migrant, never mind as a new citizen. One expert said the other day the planned English test for new citizens will be equal to a university entrance examination. This is all very depressing. I know Australia is a better country than this mob in Canberra makes it out to be. Turnbull wants to lock us in with the One Nation ideology of Pauline Hanson.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. vivienne29 Says:

    Hi Gerard – good article. I’m sure you know what I think is what you think. All Liberals are bastards now. No one eats that Kraft pretend cheese and tinned SPC spag on toast is fine for breakfast as is their baked beans (Heinz is crap) – I prefer Vegemite on light rye myself.

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Hi Viv,

      We are as one there, Viv. I have become a good Aussie and have even surrendered to eating tripe. Turnbull ought to be chuffed about that.
      I am somewhat ashamed still having trouble with vegemite. Helvi loves it though.


  5. vivienne29 Says:

    Cripes Gerard – are you into lamb’s fry and crumbed brains too? I do trust that both you and Helvi are fighting fit. And Milo?

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Viv. We are fighting and fit. Milo is under the desk waiting for his daily walk.
      Actually, chicken liver with bacon all fried in some oil and garnished with a little sambal is a very nice dish too.
      How are things with you down at Albury Wodonga?


  6. vivienne29 Says:

    Cold, frosty and foggy but days sunny. Lola is now 12 and fighting fit. Granddaughter turns 2 in August – she’s terrific Thoroughly enjoyed our Sussan Ley stuffing up good and proper. Last night I made what turned out to be an excellent chicken paprika. I’m slowing getting pruning jobs done – hampered by arthritis which hit me out of the blue two years ago – not nice – fortunately fingers will still type okay but I have to get my butcher to cut up a chook for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      We have been busy helping our daughter move to a new place closer to Sydney, Viv.
      Yesterday, we ran out of all the remnants of food left-overs. A lamb curry kept under glad-wrap and a forgotten spag, both still very edible. I am not sure about the cooked salmon on the lower shelf with some broccolini.
      Definitely a new dish will have to be thought about.
      Sorry to hear about your arthritis. My left eye is slowly giving up the ghost and being well into my seventies, I now have to get my driver’s license renewed yearly by seeing the quack to approve my general health and sanity.


  7. vivienne29 Says:

    Liver is so cheap and yummy. I still make chicken liver pate.
    On the cold – gave up the wood heating and put in a big Daikin which I am in love with. Just push a little button. My hands couldn’t chop/split the wood and the stove itself needed replacing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Funny you should mention the big Daikin, Viv.

      We had a double story sized Daikin installed a couple of months ago. It sits outside just behind the cloth-line. When it switches on, the washing is dry in no time. Two fans help a lot.

      The cost $ 11.000,- with both downstairs and upstairs ducted.
      The Strata people are now objecting out of sheer spite, giving us a hard time. It is not visible and our small backyard is totally excluded from the ‘common areas.’

      We did not follow ‘protocol!’


  8. vivienne29 Says:

    At $11,000 that Daikin must be a whopper. Ours all up was around $4,500 – it does the whole house, summer and winter. I also retired the evaporative ducted air con which was 20 years old. We did help our daughters with quite a lot of house moves. That’s all over thank goodness. Very cold today – it’s damp outside even without rain. Sorry to hear about your one bung eye – not a cataract I gather. Love, Viv.


    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I get that you might have used the existing ducting, Viv? We had to have that ducting installed in rather tight situations with a series of dampers allowing three ‘zones’ to heat or cool.

      I am curious about the first power bill to arrive.

      This morning we had frost on the roofs but right now it is a sunny balmy 8C with Air-con at 23C.

      The issue of possible cataracts, we have yet to address. It just never stops. Love, Gez.


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