Bob, I can smell the citrus, but not the roses. …

Comment on Voting for change? Don’t hold your breath. by Cameleer.

Bob, I can smell the citrus, but not the roses. Yes more kids are getting vaccinated, medical interventions are good because they don’t require a lifestyle change.
Better nutrition? The one healthy meal a day (if kids bother attending school) is swamped by a massive intake of sugar laden drinks and high salt chips despite the availability of healthy food at community stores.
A common problem these days is babies being given bottles of strong cordial, that’s why so many lose their first teeth to decay.
Better hygiene would require a change at home and it hasn’t happened. People still live with dog packs, basic washing / disinfecting including in the new or renovated homes is non existent.
Boils, streptococcal throat and skin infections remain rampant. Other risk factors including smoking and alcohol abuse are on the rise.
Meanwhile, the intergenerational effects of poor health are leading to low birth rates and kidneys with reduced nephron development. Many Aboriginal babies are now starting life with 20% reduced kidney capacity.
I’m afraid that the billion dollar Closing the Gap plans will not fundamentally change the situation. All we can do is provide health information and readily available alternatives. Then it’s up to them.

Cameleer Also Commented

Voting for change? Don’t hold your breath.
Bob Yes in recent years we have had an enormous expansion in Federal funding for Aboriginal health etc in the NT, but I cannot agree it is paying off. Almost all the health improvements are restricted to areas where people do not have to change their liefstyles, for example vaccinating infants against disease, emergency interventions to keep them alive etc.
I cannot believe that Aboriginal life expectancy is being improved sustainably, I’ve seen the weazel stats and they defy the everyday experience of increasing rates of diabetes, end stage kidney disease, almost universal obesity etc etc.
Are we extending Aboriginal life spans by keeping more chronically ill people alive for a few more years?
Turning to education, yes we have more teachers, more training etc but declining NAPLAN outcomes.
Again we see the obstacle that no matter how many millions of dollars are poured in, no matter how good the teachers are, no matter how committed whitefellas are, unless Aboriginal people want (need) to learn, need to work and need to change we will never get anywhere.
This is the fundamental difference of opinion between Snowdon and his Canberra ilk and many on the ground in the Territory.

Voting for change? Don’t hold your breath.
Yes good point Rolf: ‘Some things are being done for Aborigines but usually that’s not for the blackfellas. It is for the voters in the leafy suburbs of the coastal cities’.
And therein lies the problem for Warren Snowdon. He panders to the national sentiment to maintain his position as Minister for Indigenous, Rural and Regional Health but that makes him look woefully out of touch with Territory realities.
His response to that dilemma has been to retreat behind an arrogance that does him and his party a disservice. He is not assisted by a small worshipful group of hangers on.

Recent Comments by Cameleer

‘Sneaky’ Christmas present from Environment Minister
Well worth reading the Environmental Management Plan EP76 before commenting.
There would be no impact on the nearest groundwater users due to extraction from the CLA at Velkerri 76 S2 for exploration activities.
22 billion tonnes of CO2 released? Rubbish.
Gas is a lot cleaner than coal.
Bottom line is the NT is broke and there is no solution in sight from any party.
Gas extracted onshore pays a royalty to the NT Government and the Beetaloo Basin could generate a very large income that would benefit all of us.
Origin Energy is investing a very large sum of money here in the NT.
They are taking a big risk with shareholders’ money.
Thank you Origin Energy and Santos and Central Petroleum.
They are risking money to move the Territory forward.

When 20% royalties shrivel to as little as 1%
As a shareholder of Santos (STO) and Central Petroleum (CTP) I wish both companies had never set foot in the NT.
More than $100m spent with hardly any return in the Territory.
Many jobs created, employment of local Aboriginal people, royalties paid along with payoffs (remember CEO Cottee and the six Landcruisers).
Almost no return for company money. My money in part.
Constant harassment by green groups.
STO makes money in PNG as a JV partner in the PNG LNG project.
CTP has cost most investors dearly but they keep drilling and hoping.
A single well costs around $7m but can cost double that.
In my view the NT Government owes the companies as the previous CM recognised.

Aboriginal royalties: A golden deal?
The ABA holds over $1 billion in reserves for Indigenous people, many living in deep poverty.
Aboriginal owned Centrecorp is worth over $70m.
Aboriginal controlled Congress has a multimillion dollar “reserve” accumulated from its Government funding.
There sure is a lot of money allocated for Aboriginal people that is not getting to them.
And it isn’t whitefellas sitting on those riches.

Aboriginal royalties: A golden deal?
@ Jon Altman: Thanks for that information. About how much do the four land councils get for their administrative costs from royalties?

Aboriginal royalties: A golden deal?
James T Smerk: If you visit Yuendumu you may be surprised at the lack of apparent need.
Large spacious and up to date houses, some with just one person or a couple living in them.
Great communications, wifi internet, mobile etc.
Excellent services, health etc.
Large and modern adult education / training centre.
I’m not suggesting this opulence is common in Aboriginal communities.
A station, near Ti Tree and in fact most of the Barkly communities still suffer homelessness, poverty, the exploitation of paying high prices for food, poor medical services.
But not at Yuendumu.
So sad that the community that least needs royalties gets them in abundance.

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