What we have here is a failure to communicate…
I am going to throw my hat into the ring on this one.
Tasmania has some serious issues with itself. If it were a person I imagine she would look like someone in two halves; on one half a suit and on the other severely under washed clothes matched to very long dreadlocks. Total opposites. And therein lies the problem. A supreme lack of unity, on pretty much every subject and an almost gleeful approach to the battles that ensue, usually regarding forestry issues. Lately though, our creepy, two headed, bipolar little state has seemed to have realised something (Or, one man has had the money to show it to us, but that’s later). We can not go on like this. We deserve better, our children deserve better, their children deserve better.
Have you got a side? Do you need one?
Here is my point.
We need jobs. We like clean air. We like tourists. We are scared of development. There is a deeply entrenched culture of corruption (think old boys club). There are lefties. There are righties. There are moderates (I think). There is ALOT of disillusionment and distrust. Nobody trusts the government and neither side of the debate trust each other.
There is no doubt that globally the forestry industry is experiencing a downturn. I could argue for hours over the causes (Leftie kids raised by hippy parents?? Conscientious buying?? More competition??). Yet for some reason every time that a mill is closed or jobs are lost in the industry in Tasmania it is the fault of “The Fucking Tree Hugging Hippies”. This makes me infinitely sad. Not only does such a display of ignorance effectively demonstrate the tone of the argument it also shows that this type of intolerance is being perpetuated. By someone. Looking at it from the other perspective it is not much different, whenever any type of large scale development is proposed (lets exclude mining for a moment) those on the Left make it a mission to stop such development. Usually according purely to location not the actual nature of the project. In my mind both sides are no better than each other; bitter, afraid and ignorant of the true nature of the others cause. CAN WE ALL WORK TOGETHER PLEASE? PRETTY PLEASE? I have cherries….
I don’t understand how we have come to this a state. Bitching mostly maybe??. There will always be those who will blindly plunder precious resources and there will always be those that hope we will all live in the forest again. Can we get some common sense back and all start talking again? Really talking? Maybe some “Yes we will protect this forest but you must allow us to build a hotel nearby so that the tourists don’t have to hike for five days to see it”. Because they don’t. And won’t.
I don’t know, I just feel like that for the last 20-30 years (all my life) all I have listened to is vile spew, brought forth to tarnish young minds and divide a state. There is enough civil war in the world. I do not want one in the place I (sometimes) proudly call home.
All hail MONA as the future of Tasmania. And it is showing us how to go about it. By saying, um, no, Fuck You!! MONA has taken risks that David Walsh was laughed at for. He has had faith in people. He has used the old school mould to shit in and he has demonstrated that the best way to achieve something great is to believe in it.
I believe in Tasmania. Do you?