Saturday, February 6, 2010

Unremarkable bit of coast line

It is partly to avoid consciousness of greed that we prefer to associate with those who are at least as greedy as we ourselves. Those who consume much less are a reproach.

I believe that the inadequacies of the Western Australia State government are hidden beneath a web of lies of half-truths, and by confusing the public through corrupting official statistics, hollow reports and talk of processes that are inherently fraudulent and biased. Through such measures, the whole of society finds itself dishonored and infantilised by its inability to talk straight.

We have come to expect dishonesty – of which this little lie was an example – at every level of society. The dishonesty is intellectual, moral and financial, and its root is self-interest conceived in the narrowest possible way. In our modern day, probity is seen as foolishness or, worse still, naivety. I believe this corrupts the entire fabric of our community and society. When dignity requires illegality, there must be something really rotten in the state.

Both Federal and state governments and all their authorities have been deceiving the Broome and the Dampier Peninsula communities for the last two years about the size, the location and the true social, economic and environmental damages and real costs associated with the proposed biggest LNG precinct in the world, at James Price Point (somewhere). And the culture of lies, the moral and financial, social and environmental corruption that this proposal has already cultivated, is inconceivable. It started at the top and it spreads downwards. If the state lies, cheats and collects money for services it fails to provide, why can't the average person on the street do the same thing?

I came to the conclusion that the purpose of the current WA government's propaganda on LNG is not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponds to reality the better. When people remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity.
One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect as it intended to.

Soon we shall all write in a decaffeinated language: We shall obediently repeat all the benign mantras such as: worlds best practice, comprehensive studies, rigorous investigations, not a tick the box exercise and some of the shorter versions like open dialogue, accountability, transparency, community consultation, reconciliation and of cause equality. Do we really prefer safety above freedom or are we already locked in a state of voluntary bondage?

One could claim that serving the occasional lie or half-truth is the very nature of politics, since human beings frequently prefer to hear pleasant lies over unpleasant truths. Perhaps, but it becomes a serious problem when such lies have become endemic, when every political statement and media report is steeped in them and when the very structure of society will collapse if these lies are not upheld. By then, reality has been reduced to a mirage, faithfully reproduced and projected by the servants of the state on a daily basis out into the public arena of deception.

At the end of the day, the cause matters less than the result: The WA state government’s lies are pushing our community into a direction that we as a community do not wish to travel.

How are we going to deal with this culture of lies and a hostile state? I don’t know. But the residents of Dampier Peninsula will have to find the answer to that question sooner than later.

The earth we abuse and the living things we kill will, in the end, take their revenge; for in exploiting their presence we are diminishing our future.

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