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« The slow death of integrity in Papua New Guinean politics | Main | You say what you say, I see what I see »

05 September 2017


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Dear Paul, many thanks, you now have me reading Sean Dorney's 'The Embarrassed Colonialist' once again.

Kim who!

Well Bernard I beg to differ. The evidence is in the article above.

Dear Paul,

Silence is complicity not benign and I cannot think of one MP in the current Australian parliament who has any stature or integrity and those two attributes would be alien to the current unrepresentative swill in the PNG Haus Tambaran. You certainly could not refer to them as representative following the election.

The best PM this county never had was Kim Beazley

In response to Father John Glynn's comment about honourable members:

'So are they all, all honourable men–' excerpt from Mark Antony's speech at Caesar's funeral.

Ahhh... Bernard, don't tar us all with the same brush. Remember, both Keith and I noticed and reacted to the cultural insensitivity the same way as did you.

The problem is that the average PNGian is not bothered about selling their nation and neither is the average Australian, (if indeed there be such an individual).

The issue is that our respective political leaders are too busy looking after themselves to become interested in fostering good relations between our two nations that sit on each other's doorsteps.

Never give up. Many who aren't saying anything are both listening and watching.

The only culture our foreign minister understands is Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Tiffany et al.
I suspect the I love PNG coffee mug was bought in the gift shop at Jacksons airport.
If you brought a PNG Highlander down from Mount Wilhelm and plonked him in the middle of Queen Street mall he would survive but if you took an Australian and dumped him at Nadzab they wouldn't last a week.

My thoughts were exactly the same.

PNG has a true culture whereas Australian culture mirrors the US. An economy is not a society.
Sous les paves, la plage

On ABC TV last night, in a program about the Australian Parliament House, there was a very interesting vignette on Julie Bishop.

At one point during the program, among the litter of memorabilia presented to Ms Bishop over the years and shown in a split second pan around was an almost hidden coffee mug with the logo 'I (heart shape representing love), Papua New Guinea'.

The segment raised the vagaries of how the Foreign Minister is presented with presents from foreign dignitaries and must try to respond accordingly with a reciprocal gift.

Jokingly, in response to a question about what bizarre gifts she had previously received, Ms Bishop raised the fact that she was presented with some live pigs while in PNG. A film clip was produced to substantiate this claim.

What did she do with the pigs the Foreign Minister was asked. "Well I couldn't bring them back to Australia because of quarantine laws," Ms Bishop joked, 'so I gave them to the local hospital. They were sold for $15,000," she said triumphantly.

What did you give in return she was asked?

"Oh, probably cufflinks," she said.

In this brief interchange, Ms Bishop clearly evidenced her views on PNG. She obviously hadn't been briefed of the importance of the gift to her (as a representative of Australia).

Secondly, she made a joke about what she clearly had no idea what she had made as a reciprocal gift in return. A presumed gift that obviously wasn't appropriate.

I felt that this tiny illustration presented the classic impasse to those of us who have an understanding of PNG but have been effectively sidelined and dismissed in favour of those who don't have any relevant and appropriate experience and knowledge of PNG and her people but are relied upon for counsel by the current foreign minister.

Em nau. Liklik tokpiksa blo mi ipinis.

Paul and I experienced the same gobsmacked reaction to the foreign minister's cultural insensitivity. I tweeted at the time: "ABC TV tonight: Engans gift @JulieBishopMP 3 big pigs, onsold for K30,000. Julie gifts Engans cufflinks. Great hilarity. #ozdiplomacy #png" - KJ

Interesting piece. Can someone shed some light on Busa's point #8 "3,000 ballot papers in Goilala District" counted. Were these defective or tampered ballot papers?

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