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01 May 2019


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Sometimes I think our country is united because of the poor education system. A population that is unaware, ignorant and internally focused is ripe for the picking. Feed the masses lamb flaps and you maintain power.

Sadly, the more conscious voting population is small. However, times are definitely changing. Information is now widely available.

Yes, a lot of misinformation too but at least it gets conversations started in the communities about the direction where we are heading.

O'Neill would be silly if he didn't play both sides of the fence plus a few more to boot, like gullible Australia, Andrew.

He also does it within PNG, playing off provinces and politicians.

This all might be okay if he was doing it to better PNG.

But he's not, is he?

The states where the majority of voters backed Trump seem to be exactly where all the poorly educated and fundamentalists live, Chips.

I've got an English aunt who has lived in Indiana since the 1950s and she voted for Trump and still supports him. I wouldn't call her dumb or a religious zealot but she left school very young.

Progressive states like California didn't vote for Trump and they are now the only hope the USA has got to survive and prosper.

A good way to see where Trump hasn't got support is to watch those that don't support his policies and are actively opposing them i.e. on climate change etc.

Andrew, the nexus between what in PNG politics was stated as being planned to happen and what actually happens is easier to decipher if you understand the background of PNG culture.

In some countries, people actually try to hold political leaders accountable for what they claim they will do if elected but most voters seem to be content with hearing yet another ‘new’ plan to replace the old one that didn’t work, for some reason.

PNG’s cultural norms are often geared to saying what people want to hear rather than achievable and practical ideas and programs.

This tendency is based on the essential cultural aspect of not offending those being spoken to. Western hyperbole is much the same however most western educated individuals usually dismiss such statements as wishful thinking knowing full well its really only smoke and mirrors.

PNG politics has developed into an art form of saying what the listeners want to hear but in fact, continuing to do what the leaders always wanted to do. Enrich themselves and maybe enhance their egos at the same time.

The result is as Chris has previously said, so much ‘maus wara’. The ‘mandarins’ in places like Canberra and other countries listen to the BS, suck it up and are conveniently placated. The people in the PNG villages have heard it all before and dismiss it for what it is. They know their own culture and their own leaders.

The really sad fact is that those PNG people with an education and a will to improve their nation are currently caught up in a continual but losing battle by try and overturn those elite who have power and intend to hold on to it for as long as they can.

Such a situation is a recipe for more future disasters.

With due respect, Phil, I think you might have underestimated the support Trump has in the United States.

He did not win the popular vote, but he came close enough with 59,791,135 votes to Clinton's 60,071,781. And he won the Electoral College votes of 290 to Clinton's 228.

Also, across the nation, of the 50 States, the majority of voters in the following States voted for Trump: From North to South they are Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa,Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, West Virginia, Arizona, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Lousiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

In general, all the Confederate States except Virginia, and all the South-East States, and all the Mid-West States except Colarado and New Mexico.

So you could say that apart from the poorly educated and the Christian fundamentalists you mentioned, Trump has quite a following in the United States.

The most recent US 'poll of polls' from 30 April shows Trump's approval rating is 41.1% and disapproval rating 53.3% - KJ

I'm sorry I'm confused. Last week both you blokes, Phil and Chris, were accusing the PM of being in with the Chinese belt road carpetbag. Now you're saying it's the US. Which is it fellows? Or is the PM playing both sides of the fence?

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