Thursday, December 9, 2004

Vanstone defends asking Aborigines to wash for fuel

A child peers deep through the sky. A twinkle gleams across his eye. Dire ambition lost in a stare-.

The Federal Government has defended its offer to provide a remote Indigenous community with petrol bowsers and new health programs, if it meets conditions including ensuring children shower every day.

Why not? Perhaps you can encourage them to shit once every day to control the sewage system outflow?

Where even imagination wouldn't dare. A world, his own to perceive, suddenly seems more than just make believe; Or trees or flowers, sands and stars, colors and shapes, or candy bars.

Under the proposed deal, the Mulan Aboriginal community in Western Australia would also be required to have household rubbish bins emptied twice a week and houses treated for pests four times a year.

But what about mowing the lawns every week and seeing the doctor when they get sick?

Realization, the first fatal step persists, acknowledgment that life, itself, exists. Luring us to explore, senses fulfill, till we derive at thoughts and hope and will. Refuting a world where we could safely dwell, watching it slowly fade under this spell. In the ashes of sleep, a glowing ember, till it's just a dream we don't remember.

Labor has called the draft agreement one-sided and patronising.

Indigenous Affairs Minister Amanda Vanstone thinks it looks pretty good.

"If this agreement goes ahead and it works, what could anyone complain about?" she said.


Passion calls for the sacrifice, innocence is the going price. Knowledge, the fruit curiosity gains. Reality is all that remains. Emotions arise in spiritual bemuse-of antiquity and her outdated views. For the spirit of life with youth is bold. You just never see it until you're old.

VanityStone: "A community gets what it wants, a petrol bowser.

"It gives them a chance for a bit of economic development.

"People might stop to get petrol, they can put a store there and don't have to drive themselves 70 kilometres away to get petrol and then back again.

"The kids get better health outcomes."

Great who's raising the kids? VanityStone?

Perhaps they can get petrol if they have today's bath-buy's certificate?

Candor, the last hope of paradox, tightens the chains and clasps the locks-which bind us into this realm of life, imprisoning the soul in shackles of strife.

Labor's Indigenous affairs spokesman Kim Carr is not impressed.

"I see it as being very one-sided, it is unbalanced and it would appear all the obligation is on one side of the community," he said.

He said, "It is an issue the National Indigenous Council should be raising, when it meets senior government ministers today."

Western Australia's Indigenous Affairs Minister John Kobelke says the state Government supports the partnership.

"I'm certainly accepting that the principle is one that we can work with, as long as it's one of equal partnership where Indigenous communities enter into that on the basis that they will be seeking to get certain things and will get other things in return," he said.

With anguish and pain, heartache and remorse. Disease and death to follow in due course. Where a daydreaming child is certainly prone-To blink his eyes and simply turn to stone.

Turn to Stone

(Michael Anderson)

By Gregory Kable & Michael Anderson 9 December 04


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