Most thinking people might concur that a benign foreign influence is likely to be an advantage to a small nation. Australia is guided in its foreign relations by its protector and benefactor, the USA. This ‘godfather’ nation will protect us militarily, as our neighbours do not have a natural affinity with our culture, and have not been bonded with us historically. As identified by a former prime minister, history over-rides geography. In return, we facilitate certain logistical transactions by the USA in its role of enhancing political freedom and human rights in regions of interest to the Western world.
Contrary to the chauvinistic and somewhat idealistic utterances by some in the media and the political commentariat, Australia is a satrapy. That is, we are free to govern ourselves as long as we give due regard to the wishes of our protector, without whose investments we would be so much poorer economically. American interests already own significant segments of Australian industry, having initially established it securely following World War 2.
It does not require much perspicacity to realise that the USA is the latest emperor on Earth; but unlike all its predecessors, it operates a hegemonic empire, an empire of only influence, not direct control.
Culturally, increasing American influence is reflected through our tv programs; our speech, especially through the proliferating ‘nairies’ (like ordinairy) and ‘tauries’ (like Territaury); our foods; our music; our clothing styles (hoodies, or shirt tails hanging outside the jeans and visible under a jacket); our love of convoluted jargon phrases (regrettably devaluing the simplicity and clarity of an otherwise expressive language); our support for America’s wars; and our understanding of US policies in the UN, especially on Middle Eastern affairs.
I think that it is time for us to seek to join the USA as its new state. Heresy? Not so! This will offer substantial benefits. Read ‘Of empires gone and going’ in Musings at Death’s Door (Recommended by the US Review of Books).