Australians will vote shortly in a referendum for alteration of the constitution to have an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice. There is no argument for a Yes or No position following. My intention is to draw attention to considerations that do not seem to be acknowledged in the official Referendum Booklet where the cases are compared. Novels I have written expound on three issues omitted from this official guide.
Is the proposed change overreach of Australia’s nanny state? I have presented disadvantages of our nanny state in my novel Turkeys Not Bees. A nanny state can benefit people but it can also lead to totalitarianism. My novel Animal Farm 2 is a satirical sequel to George Orwell’s expose of totalitarianism. The proposal is for more control of our democracy, reducing individual freedom.
Recognition in the Constitution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples would increase their collective access to Parliament and Executive Government, reducing relative access of other other individual Australians. A case for Australian individualism is presented in Turkeys Not Bees. The referendum proposes a new social spectacle, described by De Bord, 1967. It could appear to have solidarity within the Aboriginal and TSI community, which could result in exploitation by organisations and politicians, unless checks and balances would be adopted later.
Athletes’ access to government support should be equal for all Australians. Establishing affirmative action by this referendum could prevent performances by all Australians from being potentially equal. We need more Cathy Freemans, not an underclass of performers selected by race. My novel Time Is Gold makes cases for competition and innovation in sport.
In summary, the referendum could affirm nanny statism, collectivism, social exploitation and segregation.
My novels are available on Amazon. Excerpts and reviews are at martinknox.com
Brush turkeys are asocial, at the opposite end of a spectrum from Bees, whose roles are controlled by the group. Human control is changing towards collective control but it is not always wanted. The novel Turkeys Not Bees explores some trends in control and how they are being resisted. Chance is a physicist who overcomes epistemic injustice from working for employers who keep him on ‘treadmills’, unable to be creative. His experiences are explained by the philosophers Nietzsche and De Beauvoir. He quits and goes back to university to investigate the metaphysics of flow, a psychological condition observed by performers. He meets Megan, an elite athlete and he helps her to train to compete in flow by self-coached analysis of her phenomenon, by the method of philosopher Heidegger. She suffers gaslighting by officials and competitors who accuse her of unfair advantage and try to ban her training methods. She has to struggle to assert her individuality, against regulations imposed by ‘levellers’ who want athletes to have equal success. They act for a ‘nanny state’, which embraces collectivism to control sport, universities, schools, arts, healthcare and employment. Society is under the influence of The Spectacle (Debord 1967) with mass events controlled by industries and governments, for profits from consumption and for votes. Chance and Megan are in love and fight authorities to control her training for the Olympics. When they are quarantined in a pandemic, they lead a campaign which resists mandatory vaccination. Will their campaign of civil disobedience restore to them their traditional rights to train, compete and protect themselves? This is an exciting story set in Brisbane Australia, 2032, with conflict between individualism and collectivism. Turkeys Not Bees is available on Amazon. Reviews see martinknox.com
Australians will vote in a referendum, ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to enshrining in Australia’s Constitution an ‘Indigenous Voice’, to function alongside Parliament, the Executive and the Judiciary.
A different idea is for Australia to become a republic independent of the British Monarchy. It has been delayed by failure to agree how to appoint a government leader, possibly a president.
The two reforms coincide in seeking new national leadership for Australia. In theory, the same leader could serve both the Indigenous Voice and the interests of other Australians. The role could merge to represent all Australians equally.
In my book ‘The Grass Is Always Browner’ (Zeus 2011) Australia 250 years in the future, is governed by a democratically elected Prime Minister, Abajoe, whose family are a respected dynasty of Aboriginal Australians. His government manages the nation’s problems, including famine, floods, immigration, religion, threat of foreign invasion and civil insurrection. Abajoe is able to arbitrate disputes and intervene from national heritage and traditional rights positions. His elected duty is to hold in custody the land and resources of Australia for all Australians.
If the Voice speaks for all Australians, not just Indigenous ones, perhaps it could be welcomed for leadership of a Republic, denying partisan interests intractably opposing national unity. An objection to the Voice I have heard is that it would serve Indigenous Australians unequally. Can this be overcome by enlarging its domain? For example, could the Voice inherit the sovereign interests of the British monarchy?
The book ‘The Grass Is Always Browner’ is on Amazon.
For reviews see martinknox.com
Martin Knox has written six novels available on Amazon.
TURKEYS NOT BEES
This novel is a dramatic love story with a dilemma of individual versus collective conformance during a pandemic. Will Chance and Megan’s campaign of non-violent civil disobedience to mandatory vaccination succeed? The author portrays a nanny state in Australia with government overreach and other philosophies which could change humanity’s future.
ANIMAL FARM 2
It is a novel sequel to Orwell’s 1945 classic Animal Farm. It updates to the present the satirical tale in which farm animals overthrow their farmer, but then are exploited by totalitarian pigs. The story is updated paralleling Cold War events and superpower leadership up to recent times.
Will there be a revolution to oust the pigs?
TIME IS GOLD
In this story, Maxi Fleet is an elite marathon runner whose training is advised by a team of experts in psychology, physiology, neuroscience and Zen, led by her partner physicist Jack Cram. She adopts a running technique ‘extreme flow’ based on scientific principles. Can neurological time dilation enable her to improve enough to win Olympic Gold?
When a city council is hung between a duopoly of partisan interests, the vote of feisty Jane Kenwood, an independent councillor, could resolve the impasse. When she disappears, political skulduggery is suspected. Her partner Phillip Keane conducts an exacting forensic reconstruction to find her with police help. Will she be found in time to thwart their enemies and reform the political system?
SHORT OF LOVE
Tom is an engineer who wants his love affair with Vicki to run as exchange of a commodity, transacted smoothly with delivery at a definite future time. Without empathy, communication and trust, their relationship is stymied. How will Vicki react? Will they reach closure?
THE GRASS IS ALWAYS BROWNER
This is speculative fiction set in Australia 250 years in the future. When fossil fuels are reviled for their climate changing emissions, production is stopped, air transport ceases and sail-powered freight movement commences. The nation is vulnerable to cultural hegemony of other nations, with invasion possible, to exploit its vast resources. Can Indigenous Prime Minister Abajoe lead Australia peaceably by scientific government?
REVIEWS see martinknox.com