Dateline Sunday August 23rd

Between launching new records & travelling the world I haven’t posted here much of late- slack. Now I’m gonna get weighty with it…

I’m thinking about the anti-TPP rally that I’ve just attended…
Just what constitutes effective grass-roots activism these days? The political parties are all hopelessly compromised, most of us don’t have deep pockets so can not begin to compete with the power of the corporate lobbyists, beyond occasional donations to AVAAZ, GetUp, Australian Conservation Foundation, Amnesty International, Change .org, The Climate Council… the list goes on, all looking for us to ‘chip in’.

If we engage with the daily requests for support & sign the proffered petitions, write letters & emails to our elected representatives (particularly the form letter variety), we’re dismissed by many of our peers as ‘slacktivists’ & ‘clicktivists’. If we engage in discussion on social media (hello there!) we’re preaching to the choir, & if we actually hit the streets at rallies, demos etc., we’re frequently derided for wasting our time &/or creating a nuisance. Of course we could start our own political party… hello Clive Palmer.

All this in an age where ‘do-gooder’ is a pejorative & we have a Federal government that wants to shut down our rights to protest- perhaps they want to send us to the barricades where they can really get stuck in?

It’s true, of course, that it is safer to hide inside the bubble of our daily lives, in our jobs, families, sport, TV’s, hobbies, arts, & ignore harsh realities but, ultimately, we must know that we have it within us all to make a difference, no matter how big or small. That’s not to say that we must agree – robust debate makes democracy real – but that we are engaged in the process, because, in the end, we are each of us responsible for the outcome, good or bad, & ultimately must look our children & our grandchildren in the eye. Time will tell.

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