East West Link, civil disobedience and the question of when it’s time we stand up against governmental crimes

After having published a poor CIS at the end of last year, the Linking Melbourne Authority resumed their drilling work early this year, what promptly led to clashes with unhappy citizens. Wrongly accused of “breaching the law” the offenders might turn out to be what I call “the light at the end of the tunnel”. It’s time we stand up against the real criminals; those that repress us.

To people like me it didn’t come as a surprise that the CIS published at the end of last year was nothing more than a stack of paper[1]: poor in details it only adds to a process that so far lacked even the slightest touch of international best practise and largely ignores principles of democracy. Some citizens (taxpayers) who couldn’t be silenced and who do not tolerate that the Victorian government is turning “our city” into the Los Angeles of Australia, had no choice but to express their dissatisfaction by civil disobedience. It didn’t impress the government, though. Quickly there was a huge and very militant group of police officers in place (where have they all been hiding so far?).

As if hitting women and injuring elder people wouldn’t be enough, the government is even considering charging the “protesters”. “$1.65m covering 2575 eight-hour-shifts” divided by 10 people is a harsh sum and I can’t imagine how and why those people would have to pay for it. Apart from that it can’t be that Mr. Napthine and Co are serious, can it[2]? Let’s look at who is the offender and who is the victim in this crime.

We all know that WWII didn’t happen because of the physical strength of one very infamous person, but instead, of the laziness and ignorance of the masses, who didn’t stand up when the threat emerged. Similar, the masses are now sleeping in Australia, most of them indulged in a life of ease that an economy based in the over-exploitation of natural resources brings with itself. Mind you, that situation might change one day, as it has in Spain.

For way too long people in Spain have simply accepted that authorities steal form the peoples and do what they please[3]. Now the tide seems to change. In Burgos, a ridiculous project has been stopped due to rioting citizens. People eventually had enough of a corrupt and pathetic government.

By not respecting legal procedures and insisting on a very irresponsible project, Napthine and friends are the big criminals, not those standing up against them. And we, the by-standers, are part of the act, because we are lying in a deep sleep. One day, we might hopefully all wake up and then the tide might eventually change.

Punishing courageous citizens who are bold enough to stand up against crimes and corrupt authorities is certainly not a democratic approach as repression is not a good means in an era of global connectivity. Citizens are watching from everywhere. They might one day remember that it first needed some heads to roll, in order to have a revolution in 18th-Century-France.

[1] some 448 pages – one needs strong arms to carry or a good internet connection to download it

[2] although, maybe he isn’t aware of the Arctic30 issue, ignorant as he is

[3] How I hate my Spanish friends saying „they are not worse than the others, they all steal the same“ whenever I challenge them over the current government. Ignorance is not a way forward.


About blaubear

Born in 1973 in a small village in rural Switzerland and into a society largely dominated by cows (not only was the human population of one-hundred-and-forty outnumbered by them, but politics were driven by unreasonable subsidies for diary products) I was connected with nature from early age on. Observing nature on one hand and the deficiencies of a dysfunctional Swiss agricultural policy with farmers that had lost connection to the land that provided their income on the other, I soon started to question society and the meaning of life. Suffering also under a farcical public education I developed curiosity to discover on my own. That was how I soon learned that little of what I had been taught was true. Skepticism and interaction with people from for me new cultures fostered my interest for the world and eagerness to leave a life shaped by federalistic layman-ship. At the age of twenty-three I hit the road for the first time, an event that later translated into passion. Traveling between cultures has since become part of my life. At the age of thirty-three I finally realized my dream and did a degree in Environmental Engineering from which I graduated in 2009, only to leave Switzerland once more for my "real home" Spain. Unfortunately, the stay was a short one: a couple of months later I was offered a job in Southeast Asia, where I worked and also lived (with some interruptions, e.g. I live in Melbourne since late 2012) ever since. Having worked for a Japanese company earlier in my life, I soon felt captured again by Asian culture and thinking which makes a lovely contrast to my European heritage. My journey through different countries and cultures has taught me that regardless of how different our thinking and values are, no matter what approaches we take, we all can learn from each other. And if we are open enough to see the common instead of pointing out the differences, then we have a chance to live in harmony and peace: Life is all about integration, not exclusion! It's an old wisdom that "knowledge is power", as such I never get tired of being around new people, having interesting talks, and reading lots of good books. I hope that my blog can contribute to the conversation.
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