The Voice

It’s Indigenous Culture, Nothing but the Culture

I watched with a mixture of dismay and disgust the rancour which came to a head on this year’s Australia Day, all the while wondering why our Australian way of life is the target of such widespread enmity? The happy, relaxed, egalitarian and successful society we have built appears very much under attack from a vocal leftist brigade hell bent on destroying the best of what we have achieved while rewriting our nation’s history to focus not on admirable milestones but on myths of genocide and the like. It is a warped, irrational and profoundly dishonest perspective and, alas, also the one that has taken root in schools, the mainstream media and the young hearts and minds of those who have been denied the opportunity to know better.

I am reminded of the age-old wisdom Quos Deus vult perdere prius dementat — Those whom the Gods would destroy they first make mad. This quote seems an ideal diagnosis of so many of our present so-called leaders. Sadly, across all spheres of government and all major political parties, we have people who personify that mental and cognitive deficiency, many of them policy-setting bureaucrats and heads of departments. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the handling of Aboriginal affairs, an area of failed management that has seen billions of dollars wasted. At last assessment, Aboriginal affairs cost taxpayers in excess of thirty billion dollars per year ($30,000,000,000.) Yes, that is the bill year after year to sustain the obvious failures of policy we see being played out on, amongst too many other locations, the streets of Alice Springs.

Those of us who have not been stripped of our wits can only be taken aback by so little benefit, if benefit at all, flowing from such stupendous sums. Why the unwavering devotion to an approach so clearly at odds with reality, with the horrors to be witnessed almost every night of late on the TV news? Because present leaders (a misnomer, forgive me)  lack the will and diligence to seek out, expose and act meaningfully in response to the truth. Were they to do so, they would realise the problem with outback Aboriginal communities is rooted in the falsely hyped “culture.” You know, the one we hear has continued unbroken for 60,000 years. Surely that has been enough time to grasp that it is a curse enforced by those who now extol it.

 So what is Aboriginal culture and why should we laud or condemn it?

Surely it isn’t exemplified by the shuffling of dusty feet to the beat of clap sticks. Just as surely it cannot be the moaning drone of a didgeridoo or the claiming of eternal sovereignty over all the land amid a smokescreen of burning gum leaves. Nor is it a culture – forgive me for being blunt — based on any notable achievement other than survival and adaption on and to an often harsh continent.

Aboriginal culture as practiced when Europeans settled our wide brown land, and as it’s noxious vestiges persist in remote settlements, was and remains a vile, dominating, patriarchal ethos that condemns women and children to physical and sexual abuse by older men. Before we start tampering with the Constitution, let our so-called leaders find the courage to acknowledge the truth and act upon it. This abuse often results in hospital admission, sometimes in death. That this unacceptable debasement of human dignity  continues to prevail is evident in the hospitals of Alice Springs, or Katherine, or any other hospital catering for Aboriginal people in remote areas. That this abuse is magnified with the uncontrolled access to alcohol is beyond dispute, except by those who find it expedient to claim victimhood rather than face the truth. Present Aboriginal culture provides its unassimilated people with no opportunities, no hope and an endless future in which dignity is destroyed by hand-outs and sit-down money. As such it has no place in a society that recognises every citizen as the equal of every other citizen, regardless of ethnic origin. If progress is at last to be made, the toxic elements of traditional Aboriginal culture must be consigned to the garbage bin of history. Only then can those Aboriginal people totally reliant on taxpayers enjoy the pride that comes with work and self-sufficiency.

It may be hard to credit right now, when the advocates of separatism and division are everywhere and growing louder, but Australians really can enjoy lives of harmony as one people, all of us united by the land we share, but only when we recognise that everyone born in Australia is indigenous to Australia and that no one has the right or need to ‘welcome’ fellow citizens to their own country. Australia belongs to all of us. We are fortunate to share in its bountiful resources.

Attempts to have different laws based on race, as proposed with the Voice, can only drive a further wedge into Australian society, making the racial division wider and even more entrenched. We can and must do better. A nation with one set of laws for all citizens backed by a uniform observance and implementation of those laws. We can no longer tolerate, for example, the courtroom defence that the sexual abuse of children is somehow mitigated by “cultural” factors and heritage.

Given the grace of God and the wisdom of humble leaders and each of us respecting the other, we will build on this wonderful land a future that blesses all of us. I can dream, eh?

Ron Pike is a water consultant and third-generation irrigation farmer

25 thoughts on “It’s Indigenous Culture, Nothing but the Culture

  • brandee says:

    Plain speaking by Ron Pyke and an inspiration to hear it.
    Aboriginal Australia was making progress under assimilation policies until the Socialist separatist ideas of HC {Nugget} Coombes were made policy by the Whitlam Labor Government in 1972.
    The Christian churches were part of the assimilation solution 50 odd years ago but now many, including the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, support the racially separatist Voice with naïve reasoning.
    Conservative leader Peter Dutton may perhaps be the first since John Howard to see the structural problems of remote communities. Apart from Tony Abbott, conservative leaders and conservative parties have been lame and blind and little better than the Green left.
    Thankfully Andrew Bolt articulates the problem as does Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price and the CLP.

    • christopher.coney says:

      There is no doubt that Senator Jacinta Rice is making a great contribution.
      For some reason she reminds me of the great aboriginal sportsmen and sportswomen of old and recent times. These are people who, to use the latest lingo, just ‘go for it’.
      I am thinking of Lionel Rose, Sid Jackson, Goolagong-Cawley, and Polly Farmer. Of course there are others.
      (I think it was in 1967 I listened on the radio to the Tokyo fight where Rose took the world bantamweight title from ‘Fighting’ Harada. I wrote to Rose, addressed to his home in Essendon, congratulating him and asking for his autograph. You can imagine how excited and grateful I was when he wrote back to me with his signed photo!!!).

  • Peter OBrien says:

    Spot on, Ron. As you say, there will be no progress until we stop the adulation of ‘culture’ and recognize the curse of alcohol. Whatever the genetic factor that sentences some white people to the demon of alcoholism, Aboriginal people have it in spades. We have known that for over two centuries. It cannot be managed away, other than perhaps by assimilation whereby the possibly catalytic factor of peer pressure can be reduced.

    • rosross says:

      Actually Aboriginal people do not have problems with alcohol in spades. For starters, there is no unified group which could be called Aboriginal people.

      There are Australians with Aboriginal ancestry, ranging from 100% to less than 1%, and most have no problems with alcohol. They have the same sorts of lives and outcomes as other Australians, sometimes better.

      The Australians with Aboriginal ancestry who struggle with addiction are those in communities which are the least assimilated into the modern world and remain trapped in backward, brutal and unenlightened tribal systems. The problem with alcohol arises from this dysfunction. It is a copout, invented in times past, and yes, I am sure there is data to conveniently ‘prove’a weakness, to make yet more excuses for the dysfunction of these communities. Oh, they can’t help it. It is not their fault. They don’t have the right genes to properly process alcohol. Bollocks. It is not about genes it is about lifestyle.

      • Brian Boru says:

        Yep. When you have no job, no foreseeable worthwhile future and can see no way out of it, have a drink or two or three or four, smash up the house and your wife. It doesn’t matter if you are white, black or brindle the problem is not race, it is hopelessness.
        The other option is suicide and tragically aboriginal youth are taking that for the same reason.

      • NarelleG says:

        @Ros – exactly – this is all we heard in the 50’s and 60’s.

        And still it echoes in the 20’s.
        That they were not allowed to the pub because they ‘could not handle the grog’ – and that ‘we fed it to them so Whitey is to blame.’

        [It is a copout, invented in times past, and yes, I am sure there is data to conveniently ‘prove’a weakness, to make yet more excuses for the dysfunction of these communities. Oh, they can’t help it. It is not their fault. They don’t have the right genes to properly process alcohol. Bollocks. It is not about genes it is about lifestyle.]

      • exuberan says:

        Cant agree Ross Ross, The Aboriginals never developed any alcohol culture and indeed had no exposure to Alcohol prior to 1788 as far as I am aware. Hence they have had very little time to develop tolerance and a disposition to alcohol consumption. Had they been using Alcohol for over a 1000 years or so their genetic makeup might have turned out different

        • rosross says:

          Since most humans discovered fermentation of something, it would be unusual if Aboriginal peoples did not. HOWEVER, since there is a good chance most of the mob here in 1788 were descended from Indians who arrived about 4,000 years ago, there is also a good chance that they came equipped with the ability to handle alcohol, and that would NOT have disappeared in a few thousand years. Evolution is slow, not fast.

          And since, it was also commonly reported Aboriginal peoples had a remarkable ability to eat rotting flesh, human and animal, without ending up sick or dead, we can conclude they were pretty robust in terms of what their body could handle.

          Genes don’t change in thousands of years. Try tens of thousands and more. And since the problem with alcohol did not follow all those who assimilated, but has been noted in Aboriginal communities, I would humbly suggest that lifestyle and quantity are the key factors and not genes. If it were genetic it would appear regardless of lifestyle and it has not.

  • rosross says:

    Truth writ large. Painfully so. The successful Australians with Aboriginal ancestry, and that is most of them, are those who have discarded the backward Aboriginal tribal systems and embraced the modern democratic world.

  • Daffy says:

    “Because present leaders (a misnomer, forgive me)”. Also a category error. Those we elect to political office are not our ‘leaders’. They are our servants. We hire them to do a job for us. To govern. Trouble is, they are, by and large, useless servants, nowhere near as useful as Kipling’s 6 serving men.
    But true leaders, those who set the cultural pace and define the game that politicians are forced to play are the ragged left, those who we fund, so often through our feckless political leaders, who when in power can’t even summon the courage to tame the ABC to the demands of its charter (even ‘Yes Minister’ in the episode “Challenge” shows how it is done), let alone those Marxist pigsties of various arts and science bodies, tribunals and witch-hunters.
    We do have real leaders, some politicians whom I won’t name, some media workers (few on the commercial intellectual nurseries), a few academics: those who don’t stray far from their disciplines, of course…and my parents, who were fine leaders for me. It is all of these that the chattering class, the ‘latte-left’ and the left-over Trotskyites and Stalinists seek to suppress, ignore and belittle…with the endless fawning assistance of the MSM.

  • Elizabeth Beare says:

    “It is not about genes it is about lifestyle.”
    It can be both, although lifestyle is the obvious precipitating factor for anyone who abuses alcohol.
    Europeans have used alcohol for millennia, aboriginal people did not, although they had their own plant-based drugs to create a form of mind-altering intoxication. Some aboriginal people may still due to their genes physically react badly with alcohol, especially given a poor diet. However, most people claiming aboriginality today have far more European genes than they have aboriginal genes so the issue, even if it exists, is diluted.
    Of greater significance is the failure of policy, where the road to the current hell has been paved with what were seen as good intentions, made by leftists, which simply encouraged a victim mentality and welfare dependence . The so-called ‘stolen generation’ hype has a lot to answer for with regard to ongoing disadvantage; a welfare policy was unfairly characterised as a skin colour policy. In past times children were removed from aboriginal parenting due to neglect and sometimes with parental approval, for education on missions. Now in Melbourne we have a situation where a new law proscribes removal of aboriginal children except to often unavailable aboriginal fostering, with the preferred option of no removal. It’s been difficult enough already given the Stolen Generations hype for children to be removed to safety. This latest brick in the endless road to hell will leave many aboriginal children living in circumstances of abuse that would never be tolerated for non-aboriginal children. This is sheer racism in the guise of ‘culture’, and an approach that no over-theorising practitioners of The Voice will ever fix. The money would be far better spent on creating hostel situations for aboriginal children, allowing family contacts but keeping children safe and at school. It would simply be a form of boarding school, a solution already used by rural whites. Save the children, it is the only way forward now.

    • NarelleG says:


      [“It is not about genes it is about lifestyle.” RR
      It can be both, although lifestyle is the obvious precipitating factor for anyone who abuses alcohol.]

      Pre sit-down money – remember when part aborigines worked alongside other Australians – there was no access to free money to indulge and abuse alcohol.

      It’s about free money – not genes OR ‘lifestyle’ in remote communities.

    • Brian Boru says:

      “The money would be far better spent on creating hostel situations for aboriginal children, allowing family contacts but keeping children safe and at school. It would simply be a form of boarding school, a solution already used by rural whites. Save the children, it is the only way forward now.”
      Yes, and make it available to all races of children, particularly in remote areas.

  • Stephen says:

    This is common sense so clear that even the wokest leftist should accept it. I texted an old friend who fits the description and asked him to read this article. He did and texted back, “fascist bullshit”. This is proof of the old saying about how you can lead a horse to water etc…..

  • pmprociv says:

    Thanks, Ron, for raising this critically important subject. The cliche of “indigenous culture” is treated almost as sacrosanct, not to be questioned or criticised, and we’re forever subjected to the meaningless mantra of “longest continuous” or “longest living” culture, terms that reveal their user’s abject ignorance, if not stupidity.

    In the anthropological setting (where it belongs), culture entails far more than its specious manifestations of the performing and fine arts, but embodies all those aspects of behaviour that support human existence in their respective environment, not only ensuring their survival, but also giving it meaning. Culture is synergistic with biology. Unlike genetically-determined behaviour (reflexes, instincts, drives), culture is transmitted socially, is flexible (changing over time, according to circumstances), and becomes characteristic of a population. Language is a fundamental element of culture, and its incredible diversity across our continent reflects the huge variety of indigenous cultures here, as well as the ways they’ve changed over the millennia.

    All this means that Aboriginal cultures today bear almost no relationship to those pre-1788. I can’t help laughing when I see those (often white-skinned blokes, like Bruce Pascoe, who’s flown in for the occasion) wearing red or yellow nappies (those textiles, and red and yellow dyes, are not traditional, but Western inventions) and stomping around in the dust, beating their clapsticks — this is simply caricature, an insult to real, traditional Aboriginal culture, which had everything to do with survival in a hostile environment.

    Today’s indigenous people live in permanent houses, built for them with non-traditional materials and provided with electric power, reticulated water and connected to sewerage. They wear imported clothes. Instead of walking everywhere, they prefer to travel in motorised vehicles, including aircraft. They eat imported processed food, and when they hunt, it’s often with rifles, metal knives, and tinnies fitted with outboard engines. They demand modern medical treatment. They are addicted to smartphones and television (in some cases, pornography).

    That is modern Aboriginal culture, and it isn’t “thousands of years unchanged”, or “longest living”. It fits relatively comfortably into the urban setting, but guarantees a horrendous dystopia in remote areas, where all those clamoured-for luxuries are extremely expensive, and difficult to supply and maintain. What’s more, none of this “new culture” makes any sense to them, in a historical context, especially if they persist in trying to reconcile it with traditional practices, pretending to hold onto “old ways”. A meaningful, modern education is desperately needed here, but who’s going to provide it, and ensure those who need it will show up? And that’s before we throw alcohol into the fire . . .

  • john mac says:

    For all you alcohol centric commentators , ask yourselves this question ,as you try gently to avoid the bleeding obvious . For 40 , 60 , hell – a 100.000 years of their existence , was alcohol responsible for the cannibalism , violence , infant rape , non invention of anything to improve their quality of life ?!

    • rosross says:

      They were not here for 100,000 years. They were probably not even here for 40,000 years. There is a good chance that the Aboriginal peoples in the main, were descended from Indians who arrived about 4,000 years ago.

      Another perspective on how long those here in 1788 might have been around: Found this on a FB post but not sourced.

      Aborigines possibly the tenth race to have inhabited Australia

      The Torres Strait Islanders are a different race of unrelated people of Melanesian descent, their history goes back about 3,000 years diverging to a mix of Papuan and Lapita people 30,000 years ago. They are a well structured society with agriculture and productive communal industry, and warriors using bows and arrows. The aborigines never had enough smarts to copy their usage or society, they never rose above stone age weapons (National Geographic) had gardens or agriculture.

      Australian Aborigines were probably the tenth race of people to have lived in Australia
      Aborigines are of Indian descent, sharing the same mtDNA, and two basal synonymous mtDNA polymorphisms G8251A and A9156T with the M42 haplogroup, shared exclusively between(pre-Dravidian) Indian and Australian aborigines — “These particular mutations do not exist anywhere else in the world; they are shared exclusively between a few isolated ancient tribes in India and Australian aboriginals” (Quote: Prof Dr Satish Kumar).

      Ancient endo cast skulls have been found, strange Flat-Head skulls, others of very different ancestry from Kow Swamp, Nacurrie, Coobool Creek, Cohuna, Lake Mungo, Tasmanian Aborigines were Papuan Ulotrichi referred to by Professor Alfred Cort Haddon in his book, ‘The Races of Man’. We have photographs of the “little people (150 cm) of the Kuranda rainforest.

      The many different races to have occupied Australia are scientifically proven by Dr Irina Pugach Dr Frederick Delfin, Dr Ellen Gunnarsdóttir, Dr Manfred Kayser, and Prof Dr Satish Kumar: Supported by research from Drs Norman Tindale, Joseph Birdsell, Peter Brown — and Professors Mark Stoneking, Allan Wilson, Alan Thorne, Colin Mackenzie, Manning Clark, Joseph Greenberg, Alan Cooper, Chris Stringer, and Dr Merritt Ruhlen. You cannot disprove their science.

      With reference in the “Atlas of Foreign Countries”, written between 265 – 316 A.D., Chinese Sea Captains describes the mysterious great south land being inhabited by a race of one-metre-tall pygmies: Frank and Alexander Jardine settled Cape York recorded they witnessed the little Negritos being hunted down like kangaroos by the taller aborigines. In the 1400’s and 1500’s, Dutch and Portuguese sailors sighting the Western Australian coastline noted “tall natives in warfare chasing and killing hordes of “little” native peoples”.

      • rosross says:

        I should have added the information in my post came from Gil May.

      • john mac says:

        rosross , I only said 100.000 years as a deliberate exaggeration .When i went to school , it was 20,000 years , then over time (to legitimise and add gravitas ) it became 40 , then 60,000 , as if the longer they were here , the more claim they had on the land . This only makes their case worse , as how long to invent the wheel , or make tools ? Or develop a written language etc ad nauseum .BTW – love your posts .

  • Stephen Due says:

    “Aboriginal culture must be consigned to the garbage bin of history”. Except for its presentation in museums – although sadly these days the Stone Age way of life will not be represented honestly because the museums have been captured by the Left. They are no longer objective, scientific institutions, but have become purveyors of Political Correctness and socialist propaganda.
    Certainly we need to see the end of the ludicrous posturing of Aboriginal representatives as paragons of virtue and repositories of knowledge about nature and land management. Let’s hear no more from ignorant Aboriginal men claiming to know how to manage forests and farmlands, pontificating on the proper crops to grow etc. – subjects on which actually they have no expertise whatsoever.

  • christopher.coney says:

    A suggestion I make to get a different perspective of the indigenous culture of the Aranda of central Australia is to read the work of the missionary Carl Strehlow and that of his anthropologist son Ted Strehlow. In particular, Songs of Central Australia is a fantastic book about the songs, dances of beliefs of the Aranda people. Both of these white men lived with the Aranda for decades, knew their languages, and established good relationships with them. Carl converted many of them to Christianity, and Ted has provided a permanent record of an extraordinary culture.

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