You don’t need anyone to teach you about delusion, Janet, …

Comment on Is the town over all the talk? by Russell Guy.

You don’t need anyone to teach you about delusion, Janet, but as a woman of self-professed “strong Christian faith,” you should be aware of its origin (See 2 Thessalonians. 2: 11).

Russell Guy Also Commented

Is the town over all the talk?
May the banner of love overshadow you, Janet.

Is the town over all the talk?
Diane, you’re posting anonymously, but thanks for following my comments and allowing me to have “a go” in return. This “nanny state” business is hard to follow.

You, Janet and Steve Brown are the only ones to have employed this all encompassing term for an elected government and its officers, who offer to serve and protect its citizens.

I have no issue with personal responsibility, but I object to out-moded legislation which ill-serves its citizens by legalising an addictive drug, creating dependence, with attendant miseries to the families of victims and those who are set-up to fail at helping them.

The economic cost to rate and taxpayers can be deduced by primary math and if you’ve been following my comments, you would have seen the widely-collated stats supporting the multi-billion dollar tab per annum. It’s not viable in any sense and reform is gathering pace.

Welfare reform and substantial economic savings for life-affirming activities is hindered by drip-feed psychosis-inducing alcohol in a system that despite increasing regulation, continues to create social chaos.

The argument for a take-away restriction regime has been made ad nauseum. If you haven’t familiarised yourself with that argument, then you haven’t been paying attention. At the very least, it would restrict the excessive supply which is proven to be violence-related in areas from domestic to gratuitous crime and self-harm.

Please see Alex Nelson’s eloquent post where he has deduced by equation that alcohol is the primary culprit in the decline of Alice Springs.

Is the town over all the talk?
It strikes me that those talking about “youth” have nothing to offer while they keep pontificating about whether take-away alcohol should continue in its seven day per week (70% of the NT market) flow. No leadership there.
During most of the Eighties and into the Nineties, I managed, produced recordings and played in Aboriginal dance bands all through Central Australia, nationally and abroad, so I reckon I know something about grog and youth.
To me, all the talk at the Q&A describes a bunch of blokes out of touch with youth. Condoning the grog flow in this town makes their professed concern for “youth” hypocritical. Absolutely, appalling result, gents.

Recent Comments by Russell Guy

Man in a hurry, surrounded by people who were not
It was about a quarter of a century ago – how time flies – a few years before I undertook a postgraduate Master of Social Science degree in sociology, anthropology and cross-cultural psychology (JCU, 2000), published the core of my thesis as BAPTISED AMONG CROCODILES: A History of the Daintree Aboriginal Mission 1940-1962 (Boolarong Press, Brisbane).
And it was before I did a further five years, primarily in alcohol dependency mentoring at a remote Central Australian community, this after 15 years of working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations around the country, mainly producing recordings and events for indigenous dance bands, that I thought that Alice Springs would become a kind of New York.
People from all over the US move to the Big Apple in search of greater opportunity for their dreams and aspirations and it’s no different among the Indigenous of Central Australia.
But I wonder if local town planners have factored this movement into their vision for the future?
Not so long ago, the too-often criticised police were talking about moving youth back to their communities, but the word is out that the purposelessness and abuse associated with these desert satellites is causing enough concern to render assisted passage to somewhere else.
These problems were first mooted, to my knowledge, by R M Williams in the 1930s who noted that the desert tribes were on a collision course with liberal alcohol supply.
Fast forward to the Gunner Government acting on most of the Riley Report recommendations (with the notable exception of banning Sunday takeaway).
It’s no coincidence that one of the most troubled neighbourhoods in Tennant Creek, where Sunday takeaway is currently under emergency extension, is referred to as “the Bronx.”
It’s early days in the implementation of various supply reduction measures, but 40 years of critical mass in the alcohol supply infrastructure cannot be exonerated for the Shakespearean tragedy of progressive Western values.
Beyond the alcohol plague, assuming that it will be reeled in, governments will have to give thought to how remote community families and former alcoholics will be accommodated in towns like Alice Springs, with attendant social support and employment opportunity.
The concept of safe or dry, no grog houses or Mandatory Rehabilitation Centres, will need to be extended to entire neighbourhoods, rising above the refugee or migrant settlements of yore.
This type of housing estate requires considerable financing, planning and input if it is to be built and assisted to succeed above the expectations of many of those who are complicit in causing the tragedy of lost generations and future opportunity.
It will transform the current vision of Alice Springs, but first of all, it needs to be put on the drawing board.
Ursula Le Guin, the novelist who passed away a couple of months ago, recently said: “I think hard times are coming when we will be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how we live now and can see through our fear-stricken society and its obsessive technologies to other ways of being, and even imagine some real grounds for hope.
“We will need writers who can remember freedom. Poets, visionaries—the realists of a larger reality.”
Tracker was one. Surely, we can learn from what defeated his vision or the Enlightenment has bitten the dust.

Man in a hurry, surrounded by people who were not
I spoke to Tracker a few times during the Robert Tickner period. One of his more infamous quotes was referring to Aboriginal people as a farm for whitefellers to manage and be well paid for producing the current tragedy.
Quite a few informed commentators are now talking about assisting those who want to move from remote communities into towns where employment and education opportunities either exist or could be set up to end the hopelessness and various forms of abuse that can go with a purposeless life on a remote community.
More than one is talking about overcrowded housing as a major cause of dysfunction. I’m stating the obvious.
If Alice was to be a centre for remote community refugees to retrain, restart and realise a future, who would build the houses and where would they be built?
Who would pay the electricity bills while the transition is fostered?
Would Tangentyere and other organisations be resourced to manage this situation?
Could it even be done?
Tracker seemed to think so.
The Federal Government did it to resettle migrants.
I recall Bob Beadman saying a couple of years ago that alcoholism would bankrupt the NT, or words to that affect and finally, we have a floor price, but in moving from generational alcoholism to the provision of basic housing, it appears that there are too many hard questions not being asked or acted upon.

Aboriginal flag on Anzac Hill: it’s not over yet
@ Fiona: There’s some kind of irony in appealing for symbolic unity under an Aboriginal flag when Kittles, an Aboriginal-owned company is continuously trashed by children of Native Title holders.
It suggests that there’s some other law at work and that trying to construct a body of politically-inspired law has limited chances of changing anything.
Whilst I don’t doubt the sincerity of your attempt to unify, I make the suggestion that the practical method of law enforcement, alcohol supply reduction and housing in Alice Springs for those who may wish to leave remote communities for education and employment opportunities in town has better prospects than adding to the divisions on the hill.

Chamber of Commerce in a grog Catch 22
@ Paul Parker, posted 1st March, 2018 at 6:49am: How appropriate was ‘Sit-down money’ and the ‘Two kilometer law’, Paul?
Do you absolve the critical mass of take-away outlets in the 5km radius of the CBD as having any impact on the situation you describe?
Generational alcoholism has something to do with the present historical ennui and the police have stated that they can’t arrest their way out of it, so we’ll have to agree to disagree on failures to deal appropriately with intoxication and disturbing the peace.

Bush foods: how can wild harvesters get a piece of the pie?
Good one.

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