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19 November 2018

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Sweat, pain, daily training, dieting, watching the grog, early nights, early mornings, commitment, sacrifice, teamwork, obedience to the coach and trainers strategy, advice and discipline.

This is how a rugby and soccer team win matches.

False bravado and expending large amounts of cash, that is what pop stars do (while driving around in their Maserati).

You're entirely correct about empathy.

I never kick my dogs, though I chase them off when they're naughty.

I've also had to put down dogs who were savage, and attacking little children too often.

I thought you'd say that Michael.

You can't stop stupid people being stupid but a bit of empathy now and again doesn't go astray.

You don't happen to kick your dog do you?

Nicely written, Michael.

Our dreams, living for them and how can we get them out for others to understand us as a people? As a people that may have visions of a future for PNG that will be markedly different to the past.

In the absence of government support, private sector support should be invited, sustained and nurtured. Paga Hill Development Company have been phenomenal in promoting the dreams of many PNG writers willing to articulate and put it in print to share with all.

There is also the gift of individual philanthropy - that which I know many contributors have benefited from thanks to generous benefactors including KJ, Phil, Bob Cleland, Mrs Jo Holman, Rob Parer and the Bladwell's. There will always be room for others to join.

Another avenue is that of agencies that access writing published by PNG writers. For example - In 2017, I contacted by two PNG-based international NGO agencies seeking permission to reproduce contents from the MWTE for their respective agency publications. With the permission of the women authors, content was released to the agencies. But, how disheartening that these agencies have failed to extend an opportunity to PNG Writers for the same purposes for which international journalists are sponsored to PNG to undertake coverage of their work international media.

Of course the NGOs efforts toward positive nation building is important, but how much more meaningful and important for changing narratives than for the story's subjects to have their story narrated by one who is likely to have similar dreams, a shared positive vision for PNG's future.

You've gone soft Phil.

Are you serious? "If you want to be ridiculed in Papua New Guinea the surest way is to say something positive about it."

I think you've put on too much butter.

It's time for a lot more maturity.

We're forty fucking years old.

People get mocked because of the clowns they elect or their own inability to keep them honest.

Positive stories have to be true.

That is the real problem.


Criticism of the O’Neill government certainly escalated during the lead up to APEC and is likely to continue for some time in the aftermath as the promised benefits fail to materialise.

International media, as they crawl from the wreckage of the US/China imbroglio, will now likely turn their attention to the broader context of their visit to Papua New Guinea and will begin to publish unflattering critiques well beyond the control of O’Neill’s media minders.

The government has no one else but itself to blame of course. Imprudent measures like the purchase of very expensive European motorcars that were never used can hardly be expected to go unnoticed.

Again, as so many times in the past, the ordinary people of Papua New Guinea will be derided and mocked in the reflected light of their corrupt and incompetent government.

One cannot but help but feel for them. It’s been going on for a long time.

For a nation with a fine constitution, a comprehensive and enlightened legal system and the potential of massive natural resources this must be regarded with particular chagrin.

In Papua New Guinea the people and their supposedly democratic government are clearly at odds with each other.

Internal criticism is no less rancorous. Anyone game enough to differentiate between the government and the nation is shouted down.

If you want to be ridiculed in Papua New Guinea the surest way is to say something positive about it.

Even for an outsider with a keen interest in the place this often becomes wearisome.

If you constantly tell a child it is useless and hopeless it will eventually come to believe you. I think something very similar has been happening to the people of Papua New Guinea.

Occasionally a government, even one as bad as that of O’Neill will get something right.

That I can’t think of anything is probably because if it exists it has been buried in the deluge of all the bad stuff he has done.

If you reinforce a child, praise it and congratulate it when it succeeds it will grow up to be a good adult.

Maybe the same psychology can work for a nation.

I, for one, would love to hear more positive stories coming out of Papua New Guinea.

Sweat, pain, daily training, dieting, watching the grog, early nights, early mornings, commitment, sacrifice, teamwork, obedience to the coach and trainers strategy, advice and discipline.

This is how a rugby/Soccer team wins matches.

False bravardo and expending large amounts of cash, that is what popstars do, while driving around in their Maserati.

Lovely article Michael.

Let's not forget how much work and commitment went in at all levels from the cleaners and gardeners to the APEC CEO and prime minister. I'd like to be positive no matter our weaknesses.

And for the period, our country has gone out to the world and even for a brief moment we have been able to show that we are much more than what outsiders think.

We are more than politics, more than corruption, more than been poor or everything negative that foreign media always choose to highlight.

In 2015, everyone cried foul when the government spent over K2 billion to host the Pacific Games, but at the opening ceremony, we all united and felt proud to be a Papua New Guinean.

When we hosted the Under 20 Women's Soccer World Cup, our team was no match to the other countries. But just one goal by our girls against Korea shook the nation. Then came the Rugby League World Cup, our boys smashed Ireland, Wales and USA on home soil.

All countries have their issues and I am not saying we should turn a blind eye to our problems and failures. Maybe, 50 years from now, if we're still alive, we might thank Peter O'Neill for been visionary and the bold decisions he made.

First class health care, education, sealed roads and skyscrapers don't appear overnight. A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. We've taken that first step.

We'll get there. I believe in PNG.

The dreams of a good many teachers and all the many good teachers who hoped and strove to facilitate articulate expression of dreams indigenous of PNG people, those dreams are sweetly rewarded at reading presentations by Michael Dom and by writers of whom Michael makes meaningful mention.

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