Thursday, 22 November 2007

Slightly Pished

Never done a blog under the influence before, so this should be interesting.

One of the few joys of corporate existence is the occasional lunches. Just got home from a big one. Yeah.

Today it was an end-of-the-year-not-Xmas-party-cos-the-budget-won't-allow-for-Xmas-party lunch that wound up at around 9.30 this evening. Which isn't too bad.

It doubled as a farewell for Jennifer, a lovely lady who's been working with us here in Melbourne for all of ten months, and has decided that Paris is more fun and she's going back.

While I can't argue with the reasoning it's . . . no.
I just can't argue with that.

Lunch was in Docklands and there was much beer, wine, merriment and average-to-good food. (Actually, it was just around the corner from where our new building is. We'll be moving offices a few weeks . . . stay tuned for that one).

The point I wanted to make is, it never ceases to amaze me that there can be such a lack of engagement with people in what is essentially a purely social setting.

I know that these are colleagues. I know that this is a quasi-work function. But for Gods' sake people . . . loosen up!

Is it just that I work with a bunch of right-wing fuckers? Possibly. It's white-collar corporate after all.
But does that mean they have no souls?? They're still people aren't they??

I'm not so sure anymore.

Question heard over the course over lunch: "Who are you voting for?"
Response (not me): "Oh. You know. Does it matter? Someone needs to explain to me the difference between Labor and Liberal."

While I have expressed similar sentiments in a jocular/satirical fashion, this gobsmacked me. Because it was seriously put, and represented a genuine misunderstanding.

And not just misunderstanding. But a lack of willingness to attempt to understand.
A lack of care for the difference.

My feelings on this at the moment are quite extreme.

If the Coalition is returned on Saturday, I will seriously consider renouncing my citizenship to this country. I do not think I could handle another four years under the rule of this backward-looking crowd of hyper-conservatives.

Under Howard's Coalition, Australia has become mean, obsessive, selfish and xenophobic.

I used to be proud of my country. I used to honestly believe that we were unique in the world. That we were the one place that would accept with open arms those that came to us for help.

And at one point I think it was true. But it's not anymore.

We have all the riches in the world. With all the mineral wealth under the ground we are easily the richest per-capita country there is.

So why are our indigenous people living in such poverty? Why do we have sick people waiting on trolleys in hospital corridors? And why do we turn away those desperate souls that risk travel in leaky boats in a soul-searing attempt to seek our aid?

And why-oh-why are our average workaday people obsessing about such eldritch concepts as "interest rates"??!

Who is responsible for this ridiculously dysfunctional system?

Answer: we are.
We as a society have demanded bigger TVs and bigger houses and funkier clothes.
And if you draw out the line on the graph, this is where its gets you.

Anyway, I tried to explain this to my colleagues and was met with blank stares.

But maybe it was just the pish talking.