17 May 2007

Living The Values

Update: Howard has disowned these "Sample questions". More here.

What are Australian values are based on?

a. the Koran,
b. the Judeo-Christian tradition,
c. Catholicism, or
d. secularism.
That's a sample question from the new Australian citizenship test. But what's the answer?

The Koran has some fine values, which are very much in line with those reflected in both Catholicism AND the Judeo-Christian tradition. On the other hand, we SUPPOSEDLY live in a land where Church and State are kept separate (right, Tony Abbott?). So maybe (d) is the right answer?

I went searching for enlightenment at the Howard government's own website:
Can you explain what the values I am signing up to are?

The Australian values include respect for the freedom and dignity of the individual, equality of men and women, freedom of religion, commitment to the rule of law, Parliamentary democracy, and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, fair play, and compassion for those in need.
Well, that's obviously nonsense. I mean, just look at David Hicks, or our treatment of Aborigines, or our disgraceful refugees policies. Or look at the number of Iraqis we have helped slaughter, in defiance of international law. And "democracy"??? Oh, puh-lease!

Here are some alternative questions:
Q: The Prime Minister of Australia is:

a. George Bush's douchebag,
b. Rupert Murdoch's douchebag,
c. A disgraceful, war-mongering, lying hypocrite, or
d. All of the above.

Q: The single most powerful person in Australia is:

a. The Queen,
b. John Howard's eyebrow technician,
c. In bed with Alan Jones, or
d. Sipping caviar in a private jet 30,000 feet over the island of Diego Garcia.

Q: Who would you rather have as a next door neighbour?

a. Alan Jones,
b. David Hicks,
c. Alexander Downer, or
d. Chopper Reid.

Q: The Geneva Convention explicitly states that pre-emptive war is a War Crime.

a. So what?
b. How quaint!
c. Like the US Constitution, it's just a durned piece of paper.
d. Isn't Geneva one of them French cities?

Q: Once a jolly swagman...

a. Always a jolly bloody swagman.
b. Camped out and smoked a bong.
c. Was rendered to the CIA by ASIO agents.
d. Wept with shame.