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The Aussie politician who keeps her enemies in the freezer

One of my next projects, once I’ve finished the third and final volume of the South African Insult series (The Revenge of the South African Insult, which will feature a black cover with glow-in-the-dark writing), is an examination of the Australian insult. It’s a daunting task, and not just because it means reading many Australian history books.

What if Australian politicians do not provide as much entertainment as South African politicians? Where is Australia’s Manto? Her Piet Koornhof? Her ANC Youth League? While my fears have not entirely been allayed, there is hope.

It’s in the form of Australia’s favourite power couple, New South Wales minister of education John Della Bosca and his charming wife, Labor MP Belinda Neal. Della Bosca is famous for speeding, but he’s a wuss compared to his wife. Ms Neal has, over the past few months:

  • Told a pregnant Liberal MP that “your baby will be turned into a demon by evil thoughts”. (She had to apologise to Parliament for that one.)
  • Attacked a fellow player in a soccer match, leading to a two-match ban. Her victim has shown her bruises to the media.
  • Told nightclub staff that she could have them “fucking closed down”, and didn’t they know who she was?
  • It has also been revealed that she keeps a list of her political enemies in a very strange place:

    Ms Neal is a woman who, senior Labor sources say, keeps photographs and written names of her political enemies in her freezer. And neighbours told the Herald yesterday of police visits to Ms Neal’s home at Woy Woy Bay, where she lives with her husband, the NSW education minister, John Della Bosca. They had often heard her swearing and screaming coming from the house.

    (Why the freezer? Why not a cupboard or a drawer, or even — most obvious of all — a dartboard?)

    “She’s a mouth on her,” said one neighbour. There are rumours that she abuses her husband of 22 years, though he denies it and says that the “muckraking” is “hurtful”. It is said that Della Bosca would have gone further in his career were it not for his wife, who has publicly humiliated him on several occasions.

    Fellow Labor MP Julia Irwin says that Neal is a victim of sexism because a man would not have been subjected to the same treatment. Neal herself once defended her reputation for being difficult, saying: “I haven’t really heard people say that. Certainly I’m someone who has the courage of my convictions. I’m prepared to stand up [for them]. There’s no point representing a seat and not having a … strong voice.”

    I look forward to more outbursts.

    Author

    • During the day Sarah Britten is a communication strategist; by night she writes books and blog entries. And sometimes paints. With lipstick. It helps to have insomnia.

    39 Comments

    1. Po Po 12 June 2008

      goodness, politics is entertaining. Who needs Hollywood, this is much better

    2. Lisa Lisa 12 June 2008

      Dear Sarah

      I think your articles in relation to SA matters, particularly emigration, were helpful and interesting.

      However, I think that this article is irrelevant and inappropriate on a South African blog. It is almost insensitive when you consider the issues that South Africans are dealing with on a daily basis.

      Maybe you should blog on an Aussie site for the moment?

      Sorry but I have to be honest.

    3. Michael Beatty Michael Beatty 12 June 2008

      @Lisa…dear me, it seems that you have had a total sense of humour failure. Get a life.

    4. Sarah Britten Sarah Britten Post author | 12 June 2008

      Dear Lisa

      Do you also think it is inappropriate and insensitive for our newspapers and magazines to carry stories other than South African ones? Is it inappropriate and insensitive for 702 to interview foreign authors about the latest book they’ve written? Should they dispense with their interviews with journalists about news in the US and the UK because it is inappropriate and insensitive? Is it inappropriate and insensitive to follow the fortunes of Paris Hilton when we should only be interested in Khanyi Mbau?

      Do tell: I am most intrigued.

    5. Lisa Lisa 12 June 2008

      Dear Sarah

      I will tell.

      A day or two ago you wrote a blog on the cost of clothes in Australia. Now about petty Australian politics.

      Now, I know what it is like to have emigrated and to find yourself far away from home, feverishly converting dollars or EUROs to rands and wondering if it is real or if you are in a parallel universe.

      But you are going through the ordinary growing pains of an emigrant – these matters do not generate debate in the country you have left because they are not relevant. This is clear from the number of comments you have been receiving.

      Stories about Paris Hilton and other entertainment certainly has its place but not on (or from a) thought leader. You are utilizing valuable space here for your personal journey – an emigrant’s journey – or even simpler – an Australian’s daily life.

      What we need is information that moves us, that is on topic and leads the way for South Africans. Or let me re-phrase – that is what I would like to see.

      No offence. Mix with the locals – get a support group – but don’t expect people here to hold your hand as you discover a new world. Most are in the old one.

    6. Kit Kit 12 June 2008

      It’s a bit People-esque but I don’t think this is irrelevant at all. I think it’s quite interesting actually. If Thought Leader didn’t contain things other than the right, the left and those stuck in the middle screaming about racism, xenophobia (racism), politics (racism), sport (racism), poverty (racism) I wouldn’t bother reading it.

      These things are important and need to be discussed but let’s have a little insight from elsewhere please before we all kill ourselves.

      Saying that it’s completely irrelevant is a bit like saying that foreign artists shouldn’t be allowed to come and have concerts here as people could spend their money on more useful things for the South African economy, or that People and Heat magazines should be banned.

      Actually, People and Heat should be banned, what am I saying?

    7. Eddy Variet Eddy Variet 12 June 2008

      Sarah – I don’t know why you don’t get the message, but those of us living at home just don’t find Australia that interesting. You get very defensive when people say this to you, but it’s true – there may be some who are thinking of emigrating and hang on your every word, but frankly I couldn’t really give a damn about Australia – or Britain or wherever – beyond what I can go find for myself. I’m sure Australians would like to hear, on their own blogs, how you see them and their lives, but they just aren’t that interesting to many South African readers.

    8. Judith Judith 12 June 2008

      Serious sense of humour failure Sarah! Thanks for giving us a laugh at some other country’s politicos!

    9. jay jay 12 June 2008

      Just imagine she was a white Sud Afrikaner doctor who threw the health ministers photo in the rubbish bin.

      Obviously he did not know who she was either…… and is he still practicing yet?

    10. Expat Expat 12 June 2008

      Belinda Neal sounds just like my former sister-in-law.

      Lisa
      Look up the meaning of blog.

      Sarah – can’t wait for the Aussie insult book – and if you haven’t yet had the pleasure of meeting “Kath & Kim”, rush out now and get all three series on DVD. I have a feeling you’ll appreciate the humour.

    11. Jeremy Evans Jeremy Evans 12 June 2008

      Dang, Sarah, you have bored detractors! Oh woe is you! You have failed your readership, you aren’t relevant to your audience, you are (*gasp*) gone!

      Readers that aren’t remotely interested in Australia – or anything outside of SA, for that matter – because SAns don’t find your posts interesting or of leadership quality.

      I’m quite sure that you will find Aus, like I found Scotland, to have many, many “developing country” qualities. Keep on writing, and ignore Those Who Would Be Entertained.

    12. ranka ranka 12 June 2008

      I’m totally with Lisa. Sarah, I enjoyed your other writing, it’s sharp and funny. But after the Aussie-cost-of-clothes-post I got a feeling that you are in danger of slipping into the banal and this new post is even worse. The brilliance of Though Leader is that it uses the concept of blogging but avoids the inanity of ordinary blog sites. Thought-provoking, discerning, extremely select, it’s not really a pure blog site.

      Sorry, the idea of documenting your new life, or even spotting the Australian Mantos is not thought-leader material.

    13. Lisa Lisa 12 June 2008

      @Expat

      Looked up the word “Blog” :-)
      A blog is officially a dairy of sorts but I understand that the original purpose has deepend into a sharing of information and thoughts. Certainly the latter must the the purpose of a site called ..yep… “Thought Leader!”?
      Just imagine if all the thought leaders here wrote of their daily routines: getting up, brushing their teeth, using the ablutions, eating an egg, buying a new suit ….you get my meaning? Not what I am looking for here.

      Now I do agree with Michael – laughter is a healer. But can we have some South African humour? A teeny weeny bit closer to home? Daily blogs on the cost of clothes and Australian antics get really tiresome really quickly.

      By the way, Expat, do you also happen to be in Australia? That would explain why you find the blog relevant…..

      Like I said entertainment is just fine. Concerts and magazines are wonderful. Australia is boring.
      Sarah please do not take it personally.

    14. Steve Steve 12 June 2008

      If theres any country I hate hearing about, its Australia – Maybe its my own ignorance…

    15. Sarah Britten Sarah Britten Post author | 13 June 2008

      I think Steve sums it up. It’s fascinating that there are bloggers on this platform that write about non-South African subjects because they happen to be resident in the US or the UK, and no one complains about them.

      What do you want to read about then? (Given that my subject of choice is Australia/South Africa/ National identity, not writing about Australia would be a little tricky.)

    16. Andre Andre 13 June 2008

      Eddy,
      you don’t represent all of South Africa and actually fall into the minority of moaners. Sarah does appear to have regular readers, so go and listen to Jacaranda or something in stead.

      Sarah,
      Lisa has just tried her utmost to be patronising and passive agressive, but she says “don’t take it personally”…meow!

      I always thought we South Africans had our heads in the sand, but it seems some have their heads so firmly wedged up their own backsides that they are unable to join the dots.

      I think it is very valuable to hear about what buffoons some Aussie politicians are. It puts things in SA into perspective. That’s the thing about democracy. politicians have to be careful because they are in the public eye.

      Some don’t want to hear about Australia in case they find out about what they have been missing, others have built it up into some sort of paradise of perfection and don’t want to hear about anything negative and some are so jealous about the place that they simply wish it didn’t exist.

      It seems some of the visitors to this blog are too clever by about a half.

    17. Kit Kit 13 June 2008

      Isn’t it obvious? They want to know how you got a permit so that they can also have one.

      And the other side want to hear about how messed your life is and how much you want to come back.

      Stick to those topics (dual-stream them so people can choose one stream and don’t get to see the others or they’ll complain) and you’ll be home free.

      As I’ve said before, I always reserve the right to just blank out anyone whose stuff is boring and reasonably pointless every time I read it but there are other candidates here before Sarah…WAAAAY before. I shan’t name and shame them but if you don’t know who they are, you should branch out a bit.

      Every Tom, Jane and Harry appears to have a blog on here. Maybe I should get one. Frankly, I think it’s time for a cull.

      Some people can’t write, some come up with factually inaccurate nonsense just to stimulate ‘debate’ (usually just degenerates into more racist name-calling of the type we all just LOVE (sarcalert)). Once we’ve got rid of those then is the appropriate time for this discussion.

      I have to say, I found the clothing one a bit interesting…but probably because my main speciality is economics. There are some simple explanations but hadn’t exercised my brain in that direction for a while.

      So yeah, my advice to anyone that disinterested would be: 1. don’t read and 2. if you’re that hot about it, spam the site editors and tell them it’s cull time. Don’t take it too hard if some of your favourite whingers get taken down as collateral damage.

    18. Eddy Variet Eddy Variet 13 June 2008

      @ Andre and others too tedious to scroll up to find – if you’re so interested in Australian trivia, go read Aussie blogs. Why does it need to clutter SA blogs? I don’t claim to represent all SAn moaners – clearly that is your role – but I am gatvol of endless ex-past wasting space on SA blogs. If you leave, cool – but keep it that way. This is the Mail & Guardian’s blog site, modestly entitled ‘Thought Leader’, where – dare I say it – the price of Australian clothes or the stupidity of some unknown Australian politician are of pretty scant interest. And, Sarah, they have bugger all to do with your ‘chosen topic’ of SA national identity, though you’ll no doubt tell me the reverse is true. If you want to catch up on the pretty little things that occupy your thoughts, go to fashionista blogs or the like – but is it really too much to suggest that a serious, politically-focused SA blog be slightly protected from the endless whining of the current wave of departing chicken-runners, the former now terribly smug ones, and those itching to go?

      Anyway, de la Rey is playing on Jacaranda so I’ll go shake my booty for a while.

    19. James James 13 June 2008

      @Lisa @Steve @Andre

      Steve and Lisa you continue to prove Sarah’s point regarding a lot of South Africans attitude towards Australia…

      I hadn’t really thought about this attitude or Australia before, but since following this blog site I find the dynamic interesting. And I am niether Australian or South African

      It seems from some of the responses Andre’s comment that some people wish Australia just wasn’t around is pretty accurate.

      As an impartial observer i’m curious what South Africans find so confronting about Australia???? I’ve travelled a lot and i’ve never come across such irrational distaste for another, seemingly, pretty similar, country before…It’s almost the way the English think of the French but there are centuries of reasons for that – I can’t think of any reasons here???

      By the way Lisa you may think Australia is boring. But as an outsider working in South Africa I can tell what is REALLY boring is South Africans telling who how bloody exceptional they are in the one sentence while in the next breath arrogantly dismissing any stable country as “boring” or any prosperous country as somehow rich “of the back” of Africa” – God just putting that into words almost caused me to nod off – better get a coffee.

    20. Lisa Lisa 13 June 2008

      @Andre

      Feeling a bit upitty today? With references to “heads up backsides” and “passive agressive” and “patronising”….it would seem that you are the one who is angry.

      I do not mean it personally. I would be similarly uninterested in reading about the clothes’ prices in England, Taiwan or Iceland – and if I were interested, I would look to blogs on those countries. But I frequent TL South Africa.

      I think Sarah writes well and I think she will “re-invent” herself as an Aussie in time to come It is certainly a process. I have done the same in my home of choice.

    21. Tash Joseph Tash Joseph 13 June 2008

      If you don’t enjoy what Sarah has to write about – bearing in mind that she’s made it 100% clear what she WILL be writing about for the foreseeable future – then don’t click on any of her article links. Ignore, ignore, ignore.

      For myself, Sarah, I am intrigued by what life in South Africa’s 10th province is like – not because I’d ever want to live there, but because so many South Africans have chosen to, and I want to know how the cultures are meeting/clashing. So, keep blogging, and if you get chucked off Thought Leader because the powers-that-be grow weary of kangaroos, let us know where else we can find you.

    22. japes japes 13 June 2008

      Good place Arsetralia. Seriously; pleasant people and for me from SA, boring is very good. But then Switzerland and France are also pleasant (generally) but I’m not really interested in their insults etc.

      So I’m with Lisa but who I think meant “diary” not “dairy” in her meaning for blog. That is although there are tits here and we’ll milk anything for a laugh.

    23. history history 13 June 2008

      I think its a fantastic idea to do an Australia-baed book. I’m sure that Pauline Hanson deserves a few cringe-worthy mentions.

    24. Expat Expat 14 June 2008

      Um, ja, Lisa, Tash is right – if you don’t like, don’t read. Simple as that.
      And no – I am not in Oz, in London actually. But I have visited Australia, and I have Aussie friends.
      But have you been there? Do you have any Aussie mates? Because if you had – in either instance – you would know that the world is not as one dimensional as you clearly think it is. There is a lot that is really fascinating about Oz, and I think Sarah’s blog is an interesting insight into the experiences of a foreigner in a new country. It is also valuable for people who are considering leaving SA to read about the stuff that falls outside their comfort zones. Like spelling, for example.

    25. Lisa Lisa 14 June 2008

      Dear Tash and Expat

      Well the approach – if you don’t like it, lump it -sounds a tad familiar. Why is criticim unwelcome on a Blog inviting comments? Like all other bloggers, Sarah has to take it and you know what….it may even prove helpful to her. Your logic is the same as those pro-governmental cronies who try to exclude the opinions of “non-believers” by saying “if you don’t like it, bugger off!” or by getting personal. We know that is not very long sighted, don’t we?

      Yes Expat, I have been to Australia and New Zealand, amongst other countries. I certainly do not think the world is “one dimensional” (whatever that is supposed to mean). I have lived in the US and I currently live in Germany. I have learned a fourth language here. I suppose learning German could be described as well outside of my Joe’ies (spelling, Expat?) “comfort zone”. Perhaps more so than in the UK.

      Oh and oh mighty learned Expat, please forgive me my spelling digressions but my time on TL is limited and I now understood from Japes that I wrote dairy and not diary. One thing I know, is that when someone has to resort to spelling corrections, they have lost the argument.

      Tips on emigrating to Germany or the USA, I am happy to supply, but hopefully that will not be the substance of TL South Africa.

      Strange that the topic of Sarah’s blog raised less discussion than my point of view that it is not relevant. That speaks volumes.

      I think I shall return to my one dimensional life and feed my kids….

    26. Tash Joseph Tash Joseph 15 June 2008

      OK, wow – you’re a little hypersensitive about this whole issue, Lisa!

      My sense of blogging, and of responses to blogs, is this: you are totally entitled to read, dislike, and comment. You can criticise and you can complain. You can make your point heard. But if a blogger consistently disappoints you, or if the blogger has specifically outlined a topic for discussion and made it clear that he/she will be following that path, why do you waste your time reading his/her stuff?

      I am continually amazed by how closed off South Africans are to hearing about life and living in other countries. It’s as though you leave the Motherland, and you step into a vacuum! To my mind, there is plenty of content on Thought Leader that is reflecting on our (those of actually still in South Africa) daily realities, and it is interesting and informative to read some slightly different stuff!

      Australia is very similar to South Africa in many ways, and I’m keen to know if that’s because of many of us have chucked over there, or what the roots of those similarities are? So, by reading Sarah’s blog – which always outlines what is happening in Australia when held up to what is happening in SA, and is always careful to reflect on South Africa as well as Australia – I gain some insight into that.

      Your comparison of myself and Expat’s suggestion to the habit of some governmental spheres and other touchy South Africans is amusing, to say the least! Blogging is very different to running a country, and you take the blogosphere too seriously at your own peril. I stick by my original sentiment: if you don’t like it, don’t read it. It’s the same way I deal with idiotic posters on the forums I sometimes visit – I use the ‘block’ application and that way don’t have to deal with my blood pressure skyrocketing in the wake of their idiocy.

      That said, if you’re genuinely annoyed by Sarah’s project being located on Thought Leader, complain to the moderating team and put your points to them. They have the power to change what we read here, in terms of who features, and it’s ultimately them you should be lobbying.

    27. vic vic 15 June 2008

      To Lisa and Eddy, Possibly you should ask Andre what is the link between him and Sarah ..then the reason he is so defensive would perhaps be clear.

    28. vic vic 15 June 2008

      It seems that most of those who think Sarah’s Aussie letters are interesting are out of the country ..or as in one case ..will join her shortly.

      Why is it that SA residents appear to want to stop people writing about their new lives…why all this aggression as opposed to simply voting with their feet ..or mouse fingers.

      Don’t they accept that she has a right to write about what she wants to.

      I am in Australia (thankfully) and if I didn’t want to read what she was writing ..I would not come here.

      I disagree with some of it ..but heck , she can write what she likes…and good on her for doing it.

    29. amandzing amandzing 15 June 2008

      lol sarah, please carry on writing about the wondeful land of OZ, and dont argue with stupid people, you know what happens…

    30. Lisa Lisa 15 June 2008

      @ Tash

      I am not upset by this discusson. I am debating the issue just as you or anyone alse is. If you have another impression, please be corrected.

      My point was that criticm may help a writer in the long run. Just as it may help anyone in government or anyone else for that matter. And perhaps I am imagining it but I think Sarah may have already taken it into consideration based on her latest blog.

      But your point is also well taken. I will surely avoid what bores me. And I always intended to.

      It was however, in order, to state my opinion here (and my criticm was aired by others too), meaning that Sarah has possibly gained something and won’t need to be chucked off TL (which I am not pursuing in any event).

      Your other point about South Africans being too self focused is also taken; however this being a TL South African site, I do seek primarily South African material here. My daily life is sufficiently “open” to other influences apart from the “Motherland”. Perhaps it comes down to our different needs – you live in South Africa and long for other influences and I live abroad and seek South African goodies.

      Shall we agree to disagree?

    31. Siphiwo Qangani with kangaroos Siphiwo Qangani with kangaroos 15 June 2008

      @Lisa
      Take them on Lisa-be be firm on your grounds, people cannot use TL as their fiefdom…writing about taking a bus from Point A to Point B, brushing teeth, changing socks, eating this not that and all that crap.
      There’s an old saying which states, “people should tackle the ball not the player”, but in this case there’s no ball to tackle we are just having a player (Sarah) that (unnecessary) wants to be tackled.

    32. Steve Steve 15 June 2008

      Same on this side – have been to Australia, have family there, also travelled extensively and now live in Spain – I just find reading daily blogs of Australia a bit boring, for some reason I particularly dislike hearing about the place- not that thats a problem, Sarah writes a lot of other blogs that I do enjoy – It also sounds like the others who criticised Sarahs Australian blogs enjoy her other blogs – thus if they (and I) choose to criticise the blogs that we don´t particularly enjoy reading, thats not a bad thing, it´s just giving feedback – I myself wouldn´t give feedback to someone whose blogs I don´t enjoy at all (I wouldn´t even bother to read them, then to be wasting my time leaving feedback) but because most of Sarahs blogs I do enjoy reading, I think it´s worth leaving feedback at the blogs I don´t enjoy reading as much. I think the comments have opened up quite a good debate about criticism and opinions and to the degree they should be considered. Another debate it has opened up for me to consider myself, is why I don´t like reading about Australia, but I don´t have any problem to read about other countries. I wonder if its Shane Warne and George Gregan that have done a such a good job in ruining Australias image to us South Africans… If it is because of those two, it shows you how important country representatives can be. But then again not to sure if it because of that, hmmm Im going to go and ponder this… Anyway to sum up, criticism about Sarahs blogs has allowed a lot of people the opportunity to defend it and explain why they enjoy reading them – If I was Sarah i would regard this as a big compliment!

    33. Expat Expat 15 June 2008

      @ Lisa
      Your response is not criticism (as in the constructive kind), it is just whingeing. You would not watch a TV programme you didn’t like, or read a magazine you didn’t like, by the same token, logic assumes you would take the same approach to blogs. But to read it, and then moan that you find it dull or irrelevant is not the same as taking issue with something said, like, um, “Crisis, what crisis?” and debating it on a constructive level.
      I think what separates Sarah (and no, before you jump to any conclusions, I do not know her, and I am not a friend/relative/business associate) from the rest of us is that she has been published – i.e. someone paid her money for her views and insights. I think that gives her one up on the rest of us who only get air-time by virtue of the nature of blogging.

    34. Nick Nick 16 June 2008

      @Steve,

      Mate, i’m genuinely interested to hear your thoughts on why you have no problem reading about other countries but dislike reading about Australia?? :)

      It will no doubt shed some light on the whole thing Sarah has tried to touch on for us.

      If it is because of the Warnes of this world, as you say, I hope you haven’t taken the cricket too seriously!! Get in a discussion with Australian’s about Warne and most will agree he’s an arrogant prat, with the inevitable disclaimer…”great bowler though”..

      As an Aussie who has lived in South Africa – I often felt the need to point out we’re not all as abrasive as some sporting identities or as small minded as some politicians…just as I know most South African’s aren’t..

      Having said that – I look forward to your insight – at least it sounds like you’re giving it some thought. Good on you!

    35. Lisa Lisa 16 June 2008

      @ Expat

      Some are of the viewpoint that my criticim has been constructive. Alone the debate that has ensued, is if merit. Sarah appears to have been one of those who has heard my criticm and has engaged in its merits. Many have agreed with my viewpoint and many have not. This is the nature of debate and I shall not apologize for it.

      Expat, when does criticim or the honest expression of an opinion become whingeing in your book? Perhaps when it is ignored? Or when YOU determine that it is lacking in merit? Are you guilty of whingeing here on TL when you criticize public officials and they fail to take heed?
      I never consider my expressing an opinion to be whingeing. I state my views and argue my points without getting personal or angry. A whinger is a victim.

      I truely cannot see a difference between criticising anyone in the public domain, be it a politician or a writer or whatever. Like Steve, I otherwise enjoy Sarah’s blogs and therefore felt it appropriate to state my opinion. This out of respect and in order to draw her attention to this matter. You have not made it clear why this would be different from “taking issue with something said, like, um, “Crisis, what crisis?” and debating it on a constructive level”. It this matter simply less important than political crises are and thus not worthy of criticm? I disagree.

      Expat please do not put words in my mouth. Did I, at any time, accuse you or anyone else of being related to Sarah in any manner? Vic raised a possible link to Sarah that is unbeknown to me. Let’s just stick to the topic and not get personal.

      Also I am well aware that Sarah is a professional writer and is “one up” on us readers – is that an issue in this debate? What does that have to do with whether she should write about Australian matters or not? You really lost me here. And by the way, she is only a successful writer as long as people read her work and in order to continue to read her work, she must keep writing relevant blogs. This is no different from other public figures who are only such BECAUSE of us lowly supporters/readers and not IN SPITE of us. Precisely for this reason she should listen to, and be open to, criticm.

      By the way I am certainly not a writer and do not profess to be one. I am therefore not in competition with Sarah or anyone else, who may be “one up” on me. But I am a reader and without readers she is not a professional writer.

    36. vic vic 16 June 2008

      @steve

      If two legendary sportsmen like Warne and Gregan have damaged Australias image to South Africans then how badly has South Africas image (to the world) been damaged by baby rapists and ultraviolent scum?

      The only reason that South African are not being thought of (once again) as polecats of the world …is because they are not really being thought of at all.

      In the scheme of things , they just don’t rate.

    37. Steve Steve 17 June 2008

      @Vic – :)

    38. Eish Eish 18 June 2008

      Put two Sefricans together on the same blog and you have a fight. Its becoming rather tedious. What the stayers do not realise, is that the leavers still regard themselves as South Africans. Saffers, Sefricans – however the world refers to us – linking us to our country of origin. And although we have physically moved countries, our heads are still pretty much in South Africa. We follow the news, we read the South African blogs, we worry about our family, we watch SA songs and movie clips on YouTube, we order SA music from the web, we are up to date with the happenings in SA. Not to justify anything or to feel lofty because we moved on to ‘civilisation’ and do not have to deal with crap anymore, but because we are tied to SA. We haven’t suddenly become people without any identity – we identify with South Africa. If you open your eyes, you will discover a massive virtual South African community on the internet. Expats from all over the world contribute on forums, comment on YouTube videos, blogs, newspaper articles. Several support groups and forums exist, websites with recipes, virtual SA shops where you can buy Mrs Balls, etc etc. South Africans are no longer bound to a geographical area on the southern tip of Africa. There is a virtual country out there, which Sarah has now joined. We have other experiences which we find amusing or interesting and we have the need to tell someone about it – like experiences you would want to tell your family or friends in SA about. We are aliens in our new countries for all practical purposes and being alienated by the people who chose to stay in SA really leaves you nowhere to turn. Thanks to people like Sarah, we feel connected to others in the same boat. We don’t hate our home country – we fear it.

    39. Eish Eish 18 June 2008

      Oh, and by the way – look up GONDWANALAND. If you knew what it meant, you would not criticise Sarah for writing about Australia. Now look at the banner at the top of this page. The title of her blog. It says Gondwanaland. Now look at the world map of Gondwanaland to make sure. Yeah, mate! Australia is smack bang in the centre of it. Eish! Sarah, you go girl!

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