Category Archives: History

Don’t be gullible – Vote the voice down

Why conservatives shouldn’t support an Indigenous Voice to Parliament

Peter O’Brien, Spectator Australia, 10 August 2021

Yesterday, Flat White ran a piece by Senator Andrew Bragg explaining why conservatives should support the proposed Indigenous Voice to Parliament. Let me now offer my thoughts as to why conservatives should shun this idea.

There are two reasons the Voice is not a good idea. Firstly, claims that it will be advisory only and that it will not become a third chamber of Parliament are specious at best. And secondly, it will not work.

Let me begin with the first point. Senator Bragg cites a number of examples where government has a formal mechanism to receive advice – the Joint Committee on Human Rights and the Joint Standing Committees on Corporations and Intelligence and Security. Notice anything about these bodies?  That’s right. They are embedded within the parliament. There are, of course, many external bodies that proffer advice to government – industry associations and so on – that is not binding, but they do not attract the wide public support, and therefore political attention, that Aboriginal affairs does. The advice of these organizations is considered by governments but since they are essentially self-interested, albeit enlightened, their advice can safely be ignored by government if it adversely impacts other considerations.

That will not be the case with the Voice.

It’s vital to read the rest here…

Bringing down Ben Roberts-Smith

Australia sent the cream of its soldiers into Afghanistan to fight an enemy who puts no limits on the barbarism necessary to achieve their political and religious goals. One recent example of their diabolical barbarism was the bombing of a girls’ school in Kabul which killed at least 50 schoolgirls and wounded 100 others. This is one barbaric example among many. Such is the type Australian soldiers had to deal with.

Ben Roberts-Smith in his appearance is a magnificent warrior Australians can be proud of. But appearance is nothing unless actions can match the appearance. It does. Roberts-Smith is among Australia’s most decorated soldiers, being awarded a Victoria Cross, Australia’s highest military honour, for an action, the reading of which makes one gasp. The courage and daring in eliminating a machine gun nest is the stuff of movies.

But all the courage, military ability, and daring against a brutal barbaric enemy is nothing for Australia’s leftist media, full of pasty faces, long pale grasping fingers, and an overflow of spite. Roberts-Smith is a paradigm example of the type of man they hate.

They have gone to work in their well-known and proven way to create an image of this magnificent soldier as a war criminal. As expected the Age, the Sydney Morning Herald, and the Guardian are at the head of the assassination attempt. But look on the internet and your will find that whole deplorable basket of leftist-haters in the pile-on.

News.com is not my favourite news platform, but for once they have posted an article by Candace Sutton (hardly on the right) that has some balance – has not attempted to paint a picture of unquestioned guilt.

Ben Roberts-Smith on deployment in Afghanistan in 2010 on one of five tours he made for the Australian SAS. Picture: Department of Defence

Bombshell as witness slips up in Ben Roberts-Smith trial

Candace Sutton, news.com, 31 July 2021

A witness in the Ben Roberts-Smith trial has insisted the “big soldier” gave him instructions in Pashto, which the soldier does not speak.

An Afghan witness appears to have made a slip-up, claiming in the Ben Roberts-Smith defamation trial that a “big soldier” gave him instructions in Pashto, which Mr Roberts-Smith does not speak.

The final witness testifying from Kabul, Shahzad Aka, made the assertion under questioning from both sides in the trial, by Nine Newspapers’ lawyer and Mr Roberts-Smith’s.

He told the trial that the “big soldier” had come and had “a conversation” with him and others as they waited in a hut in Darwan after a raid by Australian SAS soldiers on September 11, 2012.

“That soldier told us you should not move until our plane comes … lands and we go back,” he said.

“This was said to us in Pashto language. Yes, we were told in Pashto, the conversation with us in Pashto.”

On June 19 this year, Mr Roberts-Smith testified that he didn’t speak the Pashto language. The trial has heard an interpreter accompanied to soldiers to translate commands to Afghan villagers.

Read the rest here…

Scholars of the left debunk faux Aboriginal’s book of nonsense

Ever since Bruce Pascoe’s book first slithered from the press, it has had a thrashing over its inaccuracies, exaggerations, and baseless assertions. Because those slamming the book were perceived to be on the conservative side of politics, the criticisms were ignored or sneeringly dismissed. As expected, foremost among the critics of the conservatives’ view were ABC people. Their comments and support for Dark Emu showed they had uncritically swallowed Pascoe’s dodgy dish.

That grubby foul-mouthed Benjamin Law said, ‘Dark Emu will calibrate everything you know about Aboriginal architecture, engineering and agriculture on this continent.’ Political commentator Patricia Karvelas claimed that Dark Emu made ‘heavy use of primary extracts – it’s all there.’ Well, it wasn’t all there. It’s a mild criticism to say the book is a lot of rubbish. It deserves a lot more.

But now two academics of the left have written book to debunk the hoax (see below). But do you think the left will back down? Not on your life. Dark Emu is a massive propaganda tool. The left will not let it go without a struggle.

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Debunking Dark Emu: did the publishing phenomenon get it wrong?

In 2014, Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu revolutionised interpretations of Indigenous history, arguing that Aboriginal people engaged in agriculture, irrigation and construction prior to the arrival of Europeans. Now, in a new book, two highly respected academics say that there is little evidence for these claims.

By Stuart Rintoul, The Age, JUNE 12, 2021

The walls of Peter Sutton’s home in country South Australia are hung with ghosts – black-and-white photographs he has collected from second-hand shops over the years, the long-gone people he calls “poignant strangers”, staring out from the past, without families who want or remember them.

It’s a rambling old house of stone and timber, everything you would expect an anthropologist’s home to be: rooms filled with books, papers, a large volume of genealogies of Wik families from Cape York among whom he has spent much of his professional life, including some 2000 records of births and deaths. Sutton has spent many decades with the Wik people; danced with them, cried with them. There are other records, from western Arnhem Land, Daly River, the Murranji Track – ghost road of the drovers, Central Australia and the corner country of the Lake Eyre basin.

Sprawled across a dining room table is an almost-finished book about the early 20th century Queensland anthropologist Ursula Hope McConnel, who was brave and brilliant and solitary.

Sutton is one of Australia’s leading anthropologists. A gifted linguist, rigorous, sometimes controversial, a debunker of myths who stood, grief-stricken, in the little cemetery at Aurukun, on the west coast of Cape York, in September 2000 and began to think the thoughts that gradually formed themselves into his heretical essay and then book, The Politics of Suffering: Indigenous Australia and the End of the Liberal Consensus, which exposed the gulf between progressive ambition and dysfunctional reality in Aboriginal communities.

Quietly spoken, with a restless curiosity, independent-minded Sutton is now almost 75 years old but doesn’t seem it. An outsider in many ways throughout his life, he was born in working-class Port Melbourne at a time when men in hats and shabby suits played two-up on the other side of his grandmother’s back fence.Advertisement.

Read the rest here…

LET’S TELL THE TRUTH

Stan Grant, well-known media figure, with his slightly olive skin and a thoroughgoing ‘colonial’ education, is an activist of relatively recent origin. He is foremost among those Australians of Aboriginal Ancestry (AOAA) calling for the truth about British settlement, meaning that existing historical accounts are a whitewashing of the violence inflicted on the many indigenous tribes the British found wandering around the countryside. I agree with Stan, with his educated accent, that the truth should be known. Bring it on, I say. Some of the truth is in an outstanding paper by Luke Power, addressing some of those very subjects Stan considers whitewashed.

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POWER AND POLITICS – TELLING THE TRUTH ABOUT TASMANIAN GENOCIDE

By Luke Powell, The Daily Declaration.

Chris Kenny, in a recent article for the Australian, commented on the sobering truth about Australian history:

“Increasingly, reality does not matter so much in public debate as the narrative.”

This has certainly been the case with Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu, which has recently been found out for sourcing incorrect material and fabricating information to present a Eurocentric noble savage account of aboriginal history. 

By rejecting truth and presenting aboriginal history as a narrative of good and evil, historians have gained political power as the saviours of an entire people group. Some such as historian Lyndall Ryan in her recent book, Passionate Histories, have argued in a chapter titled, ‘Hard Evidence’, that academics who focus on primary sources,

Reflect the reluctance of many white Australians even today, to come to terms with incontrovertible evidence about our violent past and to seek reconciliation with Aboriginal survivors.1

The evidence she provides should therefore be discounted by her own standards. In order to gain power in a politicised history, she makes the assumption that academics who search for hard evidence do not want reconciliation with aboriginals. 

This sinister political game has played out in the history of the Black Line. This period of time is arguably the most infamous event in Tasmanian, if not all of Australian history. By most accounts, it expressed the colonial intent to exterminate the Aboriginal population by sending a line of colonial soldiers across Tasmania.

Historian Henry Reynolds writes in An Indelible Stain? The Question of Genocide in Australia’s History, that this action by the British government was tantamount to ‘ethnic cleansing’.2 Others such as anthropologist David Davies in The Last Tasmanians claims the Black Line played a major role in the extermination of the Aborigines.3

But what actually happened? What historical evidence is there? What follows are ten facts from Keith Windschuttle’s book The Fabrication of Aboriginal History, that answer these questions by looking at the available ‘hard evidence’.4 Only by looking at the truth can we begin to achieve true reconciliation.

The Black Line did not Target all Aboriginals

The Black Line only targeted two violent tribes. In order to end the hostilities between these tribes and white settlers, Governor Arthur drew up a plan for the Black Line which focused on two groups: the Oyster Bay and Big River tribes. His goal was to put them into a safe reserve in the northern part of the Island away from settlers, to practise their traditional way of living. As Windschuttle writes:

There was no intention to treat the Aborigines as Bosnians and Kosovars were treated in the 1990s, and to kill them because of their race or religion. Even those to be removed from the settled districts were targeted not because of their race, but because of their violence. Other members of the same racial group deemed to be less hostile were not to be touched.5

Read the rest here…

First nations – NOble savage or just savage?

Bruce Pascoe’s book DARK EMU strove to paint a picture of Aboriginal culture before European settlement that was all peace and harmony and in many respects superior to the hated white man’s culture. His bestselling work was swallowed greedily by Australia’s woke/PC class (particularly the ABC) no matter how much it contradicted previous scholarly findings.

One aspect that historians before Bruce found common to all Aboriginal tribes was the mind-numbing violence they inflicted on each other, externally with other tribes and internally where the men murdered each other and beat the hell out of their women.

In the age of (European) exploration, the most developed countries of Europe settled mostly in lands where First Nations people lived: Australia, North and South America, Canada, Africa. Again, what was common to the primitive tribes on those lands was the violence. The tribes warred with each other, sparring no extent of brutality, many indulging in cannibalism. Some First Nations people had elaborate religious ceremonies during which all manner of people were sacrifice to the gods. The Spaniards could not believe what they witnessed among the Aztecs, for example.

Just an few hundred miles to the North of the Mayan tribes (today’s Mexico) were the Indian tribes on the Southern Plains (Texas). They included the Apaches and the Comanches. Before white people settled in the area, the dreaded Comanches had driven all the other tribes from the plains, their natural homeland, some hounded to the point of extinction. The Comanches spared no one. Men, women and children were slaughtered in their raids, Women were led away as captives to be gang-raped. The video Comanche War Raids gives a look into the delightful culture of that First Nation tribe.

Bruce Pascoe has turned out to be a fraud and DARK EMU a political work of nonsense.

Who will save us from these ideological crackpots?

The Killing of History

Keith Windschuttle, Quadrant, 13 May 2021

When little else in the world makes sense, history is the defining discipline. It carries extraordinarily important lessons for us and the future that we seek to shape. It can demolish prejudice. It is a reminder that there are hard decisions that have to be made, and the importance of making them and not shying away from them. And it can also inspire and point us to new horizons … We cannot, in facing our future, in the most consequential geopolitical realignment in our lifetimes, abandon what Arthur Schlesinger described as “historic purpose”. We have to be informed by a sense of not only who we are, but from where we have come.  
                     —Brendan Nelson, on launching A Liberal State: 1926–1966 by David Kemp

The audience at the launch in Sydney on April 29 of the fourth volume of David Kemp’s monumental history of Australian Liberalism nodded in agreement at Nelson’s comments on the centrality of history to understanding society. He described the book of his former ministerial colleague in the Howard government as a “towering masterpiece” which he wished he had read at the outset of his political career: “It brings so much understanding and enlightenment to who we are and where we are today.” (The book is reviewed in detail by William Poulos in our Books section in the upcoming June issue.)

On the night, those attending were obviously pleased with the impact both the book and its three companion volumes were likely to have on the future writing of political history in Australia and on the reputation of the single most influential character in Kemp’s latest narrative, Robert Gordon Menzies. The organiser of the book launch, the Menzies Research Centre’s Nick Cater, also announced that he had just signed a deal with the University of Melbourne to host the Robert Menzies Institute, a prime ministerial library and museum with Georgina Downer as executive director. Everyone hearing this felt things were looking up.

The next day, reality returned with a vengeance. The Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority released the new national school curriculum for history from Years Seven to Ten. None of its content bore any resemblance to that of David Kemp’s book. The curriculum has no analysis of the origins and history within Australia of liberalism or democracy. No appreciation of the degree of political, social and economic freedom enjoyed by all Australian citizens. Nothing to give any idea of how Australia became the prosperous, civilised country it has long been. No clue about why the great majority of Australians feel so lucky to live here.

The curriculum contains no mention of Robert Menzies or his political rivals John Curtin and Ben Chifley, or of any other of our prime ministers. No mention of other long-serving leaders such as Bob Hawke or John Howard. Yet there are plenty of names of other political identities that students will be required to study. Here is one list from the syllabus for Year Ten:

William Cooper, Jack Patten, Sir Douglas Nicholls, Lady Gladys Nicholls, Vincent Lingiari, Charles Perkins, Shirley Smith, Gladys Elphick, Essie Coffey, Joyce Clague, Roberta (Bobbi) Sykes, Gary Foley, Michael Anderson, Eddie Koiki Mabo, Lowitja O’Donoghue

There is no prize for guessing what they have in common. They are all Aboriginal political activists. These are the people the curriculum wants young Australians to regard as our most historically significant.

Read the rest here…

Revolution in America

Professor Sheldon wrote this piece before the election last November. It interesting to see how right his predictions have been so far after only 100 days.

Reflections on the Revolution in America of 2020

Professor Garrett Ward Sheldon

When the conservative philosopher Edmund Burke wrote REFLECTIONS ON THE FRENCH REVOLUTION he described, with horror, the total destruction of the ancient regime in France, and the replacement of this elegant civilized (if imperfect) Medieval Country with a barbaric, mad, chaotic Reign of Terror.

If the Democrats prevail in this election, America will suffer a similar fate: Obamaism on steroids: floods of illegal immigrantsDrug Cartel money and destruction; human slave trafficking; return to Globalist Control with China, EU, and Iran. Total censorship by Big Tech, politicized and weaponized federal agencies and education. Use of medicinal lockdowns to control the population. Persecution of the Church, abortion, infanticide, euthanasia of the sick and elderly. Every perversion known to humanity: trans, pedophilia, sadism.

The end of America as ever known, as the French Revolution was of old France. 

Of course, this is a “worse case scenario.” Personally, I think the voter fraud that would bring this disaster will be exposed and corrected. Trumpism with four more years will practically drain the entire Swamp, American values and practice (Faith, Family, Country, Work, Prosperity) will largely return, by the Grace of God. 

But, even if the Biden/Harris regime assumes power, realities may blunt its effort. 

Read the rest here…

Review of Professor sheldon’s book on political theory

Recent reviewers have celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of the publication of emeritus Professor Garrett Ward Sheldon’s book on political theory: THE HISTORY OF POLITICAL THEORY. The review below is of the book in anticipation of a new updated edition.

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Review by GEN Z CONSERVATIVE

Introduction

As I’ve said before, political philosophy is something I find interesting but struggle with reading and truly comprehending it. I love reading books like The PrinceLeviathan, and The Federalist Papers, but wonder how much I’m able to glean from the complex ideas in those books. However, my eyes were opened to the value of well-written, concise discussions of political philosophy when I read Professor Sheldon’s The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson and, shortly afterward, The Political Philosophy of James Madison. Because I enjoyed those books so much, I chose to read his The History of Political Theory: Ancient Greece to Modern America.

As you should be able to guess from the title, The History of Political Theory covers how political theory has developed over the years. Beginning with Socrates and ending with Benjamin Barber, it covers some of the most influential political thinkers, generally from the West, and what their ideas were.

If you don’t have time to read the full review, just know this: The History of Political Theory is a book you need to read. To develop a better political system, we must understand the political ideas of the past, as those ideas are the concepts from which our system extends. We must understand them so that we can tweak and refine them in our quest to create the “more perfect Union” referred to in the Constitution. Read it. You won’t regret doing so.

Read the rest here…

The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson

The world’s attention has been on American politics and American government for the last few months. The reference to the American Constitution and its founders has been constant. Indeed, understanding the impeachment process and the choice of a supreme court judge requires some knowledge of the constitution and its contributors. Professor Garrett Ward Sheldon has written a book about Thomas Jefferson, one of the most influential of the founding fathers. His book, The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson, is favourably reviewed below.

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Summary of The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson by Garrett Ward Sheldon

To show what elements of what theories comprised Jefferson’s political philosophy, Sheldon traces the development of his political thoughts alongside the development of America, showing how Jefferson’s thoughts changed as America evolved throughout The Political Philosophy of Thomas Jefferson.

First, before delving into the relationship between Jefferson’s thoughts and America’s evolving national character, Sheldon describes the combination of Lockean liberalism and classical republicanism that primarily contributed to Jefferson’s political philosophy, hinting at how Jefferson was able to blend “many philosophical concepts into a comprehensive and coherent political philosophy, the essence of which [might] be closer to classical republicanism than to Lockean liberalism.”

Then, after delving into the attributes of and differences between the two, Sheldon begins his history-based approach, starting, as should be expected, with America as a colony. In this chapter, Sheldon discusses how “the position that the American colonists found themselves in…accounted for much of their feelings of both affection for, and resentment of, the royal British Empire.”

Read the rest here…

The political philosophy of James Madison

The world’s attention has been on American politics and American government for the last few months. The reference to the American Constitution and its founders has been constant. Indeed, understanding the impeachment process and the choice of a supreme court judge requires some knowledge of the constitution and its contributors. Professor Garrett Ward Sheldon has written a book about James Madison, one of the writers of the constitution. His book, The Political Philosophy of James Madison, is favourably reviewed below.

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Summary of The Political Philosophy of James Madison by Garrett Ward Sheldon

Admin, Gen Z Conservative, 11 February 2021

The Political Philosophy of James Madison is, as you might expect, about Madison’s political beliefs and how he came to them. Given that he was a Founding Father, the author of the Constitution, an author of The Federalist Papers, and one of the pre-eminent Virginians from the early American time period, understanding how he thought and what he envisioned for America is singularly important.

To help the reader understand Madison’s political thoughts, Sheldon begins with a brief introduction to it and the ideas that will be discussed. According to him, Madison’s political views changed over time, shifting between aspects of American nationalism, Lockean liberalism, and Classical Republicanism, yet were held together and coherent because of their grounding in Protestant Christianity, specifically Calvinist culture and theology.

Additionally, although being associated with Jefferson, who had, at times, radical views on liberty, and being a key opponent of the Federalist Party, Madison was no anarchist; while his views on what measure of national control was acceptable, he never shifted away from the basic premise that the national government should remain, to some degree, supreme.

After that brief introduction to Madison and his political ideas, Sheldon shifts to the first real chapter of The Political Philosophy of James Madison, which is on the intellectual underpinnings of James Madison’s political thoughts. To Sheldon, the root of many of those thoughts was Calvinist theology and his belief that it and reason complemented each other. For example, Madison’s writings, even later in life, reflected his Calvinist upbringing; they lacked the rhetorical flair of Jefferson and were instead well-grounded and ordered.

Read the rest here…