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Let everyone talk about Australia on Australia Day

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Why should anyone have a problem with people from overseas, who have spent a lot of time in Australia, commenting on Australian matters? Barry Everingham comments.

Thomas Flynn (holding flag) at a dinner for monarchists and Young Liberals (image courtesy Sydney Morning Herald)


Thomas Flynn, the Briton who runs Australians for Constitutional Monarchy along with the Indonesian-born Professor David Flint, is complaining about an Englishman commenting on Australian matters on Australia Day.

Flynn, who is 33 or 34, was born and spent his formative years in England, is an Oxford graduate and speaks in "rounded British vowels". His deep connections with Britain (is he even a naturalised Australian?) make it especially odd that he is putting out the canard that only Aussies can comment on matters Australian. More so even when you consider that the ACM was simply delighted when another Englishman, Prince William, spoke at the official function on Australia Day in Melbourne just last year.

The ACM’s decisions are being made by two foreign-born Australians. There's nothing wrong with that, of course—Australia reinvigorates itself with the energy that comes from new arrivals. The problem here is the arrant hypocrisy of two new Australians bemoaning other foreign-born people making statements about Australia. Let's not forget, Michael Parkinson has lived on-and-off in Australia for over 30 years—he's probably spent more time in Australia than Flynn himself!

As evidence of the fact that you don't need to be born in Australia to have an impact on national affairs, our Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, was born in Wales and the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, is from the Old Dart. Gillard runs the country, Abbott runs down everything the Government proposes—he’s a wrecker.

Malcolm Turnbull


The esteemed online political blog, Crikey.com.au, has opined that Malcolm Turnbull will soon go for the Monk’s jugular. This should come as no surprise to political watchers; Abbott’s pugilistic in your face persona has lost the female vote and Malcolm is seen as an acceptable alternative right across the political  landscape.

Now, it's not the habit of this journal to promote other sites, yet we are gobsmacked by David Flint’s constant use of the ACM blog to promote the right wing ratbaggery published in the Australian edition of The Spectator. This is a publication that has become the Bible of Australia’s equivalent of America’s disgraceful Tea Party—those promoters of violence and murder against their opponents.

A few weeks ago, Flint was absolutely rapturous about a review of the movie The Kings Speech in The Spectator by former Howard Government Attorney General Neil Brown QC. In prose which would have done Barbara Cartland proud, Brown waxed dreadfully about the role of the monarchy in this country. The eminent lawyer – as Flint called Brown – missed the point entirely, as do all those who see a place for a foreign non-elected non-resident monarchy in this country.

Brown was once deputy leader of the once great Liberal Party and he of all people would know that not one Australian, including the former Attorney General himself, has any hope of becoming this country’s Head of State. This is a shame because Brown himself has the necessary qualifications for the job, but lacks the main ingredients—he’s an Australian.

I rest my case.  
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