I have a confession, but let me be clear that I had no idea I was offending anyone. Here’s what happened.
Someone rang and offered me a job, for a lot of money and I took it.
Harmless enough, but now I know the only reason I got the job was because I am Australian, a man, and considered mildly humorous when standing out front in a room full of complete strangers.
That money could have gone to someone more deserving, someone with less cash than me, someone who had their cat put down last week and got a helluva shock when the vet’s invoice arrived.
Sure, I mock, but there has been much fuss in the eastern media over the past few weeks because a friend of mine, Anita Heiss, an Aboriginal woman who has been accused of being Aboriginal all her life, accepted a writers’ fellowship in recognition of the impressive body of work she has produced and on the understanding she would produce even more.
Imagine her shock and the shock of others like her to be criticised for taking advantage of their positions.
The farmers who take fuel subsidies, just because they are farmers and Australian citizens; anyone who exports and avails themselves of the services of Austrade, Australian trade missions, consular services, Ministerial agreements, free trade deals.
And shame on gold miners, taking advantage of their inability to mine any other mineral and thus avoiding paying the vast tax sums other miners fork out and, guess what, they won’t be paying a super profits tax when it kicks in.
But biggest shame on the banks, those monoliths that have a system designed for them, seemingly by them, and they make hay with it each and every day.
And what about you? Oh yes, take a good look at yourself, making the most of your subsidised lifestyle in the deep south and every so often I bet you book a show in the AEC, a building paid for by taxpayers. Shameful.