Were they that bad? #1 – The Beginning

Over the many years of listening to the ever-worsening tales of our forefathers and their supposed behaviours on this continent towards the Aboriginal people, I’ve often wondered about how they could have been soooooo much different to me in terms of compassion. After all, wasn’t it the British Parliament that enacted the Slave Trade Act in 1807 and formed the West Africa Squadron in an attempt to quash it? Were they (as a people) really so compassionless to be capable of the stories we are now told?

Listening to the modern narrative leaves me (and no doubt many others) very confused. It’s like a glitch in the matrix that most are willing to overlook. It’s a bit like the jump most WW2 narratives make when they breeze over the fact that Mussolini did a “180” and went from heading up the pro-Bolshevik wing of the Italian Socialist Party to becoming an ‘extreme Right Wing fascist’, overnight. Most sources don’t look down when they make this jump for fear of what they might see…and be forced to admit. The same applies to the narratives of early Australia.

Do a little digging, stir through some context (that allows for the conditions of 200 years ago), and the picture looks somewhat different.

I intend to do that over a few posts. I’ll keep them as short as possible to merely draw your attention to the main contention, and then leave some references which might require a little more reading, but not too much. Some of it is compelling reading. Most from solid sources.

Ok, let’s start from the beginning. We’ll start with two basics.

1st Fiction

Did Whiteman jump from his boats and declare, at the top of his lungs, Australia to be “Terra Nullis”?

The Genealogy of Terra Nullis

It appears not. They may have thought along the lines that ‘Terra Nullis’ came to represent, but why embrace the fiction that it was ‘declared’?

2nd Fiction

Did the first settlers jump ashore with the clear intent of hunting them down and eradicating them like feral pests (yes, I’ve been told this during NAIDOC week presentations to large crowds)?

For the answer to this, let’s look at the:

“Instructions for Our Trusty George R and well beloved Arthur Phillip Esq. Our Captain General and Governor in Chief, in and over (LS.) Our Territory of New South Wales and its Dependencies, or to the Lieutenant Governor or Commander in Chief of the said Territory for the time being. Given at Our Court at St. James the 25th day of April 1787. In The Twenty Seventh year of Our Reign.”

foundingdocs.gov.au

Before he sailed with the First Fleet.

“You are to endeavour by every possible means to open an Intercourse with the Natives and to conciliate their affections, enjoining all Our Subjects to live in amity and kindness with them. And if any of Our Subjects shall wantonly destroy them, or give them any unnecessary Interruption in the exercise of their several occupations. It is our Will and Pleasure that you do cause such offenders to be brought to punishment according to the degree of the Offence. You will endeavour to procure an account of the Numbers inhabiting the Neighbourhood of the intended settlement and report your opinion to one of our Secretaries of State in what manner Our Intercourse with these people may be turned to the advantage of this country.”

foundingdoc.gov.au

This is just a short introduction and a warm up.

More inconvenient facts to follow.

46 thoughts on “Were they that bad? #1 – The Beginning”

  1. The last thing collectivists and race hustlers are interested in is the truth.

    Especially given they have at their disposal an extremely ignorant and gullible young cohort of illiterate innumerate ahistorical imbeciles ready to be brainwashed.

    This garbage will never go away – at least not in our lifetimes. Hopefully the Chinese won’t have much time for it once they’ve established their “greater east asian co-prosperity sphere”.

    Then it will be Uighur time for the likes of thorpey, mansell and pascoe.


    Report comment

    24
  2. What’s the go with “nullius” (genitive sing.) and “nullis” (dative or ablative plu.)? The former is “of nothing”, the latter “by” or “to nothing”.


    Report comment

    2
  3. I steadfastly refuse to ascribe to the dictate of Aboriginal exceptionalism. There is no evidence to support any such thesis.

    The fact is they were/are the remnants of a primitive nomadic Stone Age culture that, on a contemporaneous pre-colonisation endpoint, were demonstrably far behind almost every other ethnic and cultural group in the world.

    No single dialect, no tribal councils, no written history only oral allows for a lot of post-modern, cultural-relativist, blanks to be filled in with whatever you want to suit your narrative.

    Perhaps, given time and the absence of “the invaders” they may have adopted an agrarian subsistence strategy, but they did not.

    Nor did they construct any enduring iconography or totems unique to the entire “sovereign nation” we are told in historic revision was “stolen” and “dispossessed”.

    Handprints on a wall that could have been done last Tuesday are not even in the same ball park as Stonehenge, the Pyramids of Giza or Machu Picchu as evidence of cultural enlightenment or complexity.

    The fact is British colonialism probably saved the Aborigines from total annihilation. If “Terra Australis” had piqued more than the cursory interest of the Dutch or Portuguese, history would have been vastly different and a little gratitude for that would not go astray.


    Report comment

    51
  4. Did the first settlers jump ashore with the clear intent of hunting them down and eradicating them like feral pests

    Nobody can deny that there weren’t some pretty “dark and bloody deeds” done on the frontier, but when you read accounts of how the “eyewitness” who ” bin see the white police come out of the bushes, me bin see the fires and me bin count the bodies” was actually eighty miles away at the time, or how a party of eleven police officers was supposed to have shot and burned “maybe two, maybe three hundred people” and the only evidence ever found were a few bones no one could identify as human, and a few shell casings that were not from a police issue rifle, either the whole story is told, or none of it.


    Report comment

    18
  5. Brown Bess Muskets of DOOOOM!!! wielded by the ubermenchen (all 130 of them) overthrew an entire nation.

    What a race of supermen they must have been.

    Only a white, glorious, heroic race could have done such a thing, there is no other explanation as to why 130 marines, 3 boats and a thousand scabby convicts could have performed such prodigious feats.

    //stormfront off

    On a more serious note, how is what I wrote above any less insulting to peoples intelligence than some of the “yarning’ crap being peddled as historical fact?


    Report comment

    27
  6. The last thing collectivists and race hustlers are interested in is the truth.

    Well they do love the 1984 meaning of ‘truth’. “Truth telling” is a big hit in the Aboriginal industry.


    Report comment

    7
  7. The paucity of documentation for so many of the wild charges levelled against our ancestors is suspicious – not casting suspicion on them, but on the people accusing them.

    If, for example, there was a policy of removing Aboriginal children solely on the basis that they were Aboriginal children then why would the people of the time hide the evidence? They would have thought they were right in doing it. Such documentation would have recorded what they saw as their virtue. Did they supposedly have some belief that a later generation would disapprove? A later generation that they would have seen as their own intellectual heirs?

    There are all sorts of laws and policies in the past that are recorded and fully documented – because the people behind them did not think they had anything to hide.


    Report comment

    9
  8. I had heard that Australia had been described as Terra Nullius, bit that was not the basis of colonisation.

    It was a strawman argument to make it seem the right of Europeans to be here was based on a lie.

    That was a lie in itself.


    Report comment

    9
  9. Ohhhh I’m going to grab the popcorn. This series should trigger all the trolls something chronic!

    Good luck to them.
    I’m just going to join the dots, sans the flights of fancy in between.


    Report comment

    3
  10. I like pointing out to the Yanks that the European powers did not need bloody civil wars to end slavery in their empires. They just voted for it to be abolished, and decades earlier.


    Report comment

    10
  11. The other annoying this is the painting of our forebears as monsters.

    By the commonly repeated my grandparents would have had to have had very specific opinions about Aborigines, to be either actively or passively party to some pretty cruel ideas and deeds. But they weren’t. I never heard them say a single negative thing about Aborigines.

    Not that they came up in conversation all that often. Why would they? We only talk about them so much now because of political impetus. Take away talk of ‘voices’ and land rights and smoking ceremonies and no one would say much at all.

    My Grandmother, who grew up in rural NSW, would occasionally bring up a story of when some Aborigines turned up and did some work around the farm or something, and only in response to a conversation (usually related to school work), rather than anything pointed.

    Never a nasty word.

    Now, you mention Elizabeth I – “wicked Queen Bess” – hundreds of years after the old queen had died and Grandma could summon up storm of outrage.


    Report comment

    3
  12. This will be bit long, so apologies in advance. Some of this is my recollection for which I don’t have sources immediately to hand, but the gist can be verified as you’ll see below.

    The first white settlers at Geelong were welcomed by the “traditional owners”, who “self-identified” as the Barrabool clan. I don’t know why they were welcomed but I think I can guess. The settlers soon noticed that the Barrabool were fewer in number than the surrounding clans. The Barrabool explained that not long before the settlers arrived there had been a vicious inter clan war where the Barrabool had come off very badly. I’d guess that the Barrabool didn’t mind having some new and comparatively friendly co-owners as a insurance policy against a renewal of hostilities.

    Whatever the reason, things were very harmonious. There were two day festivals where the first day was a Barrabool corroboree where the guests were the settlers and the neighbouring clans, and the second day was (because most of the settlers were Scottish) a “highland gathering”. The local Scottish society had little bronze medals made for prizes in the sporting events, and most of the ones for running races were won by the aborigines. You can see a photograph of one of the medals in Ted Stevens’ biography of Francis Ormond. It shows two men standing side by side – one is a man in highland costume, and the other is an aboriginal.

    Then the all too probable tragedy happened. No-one doubts that the plague which ravaged the Barrabool (but which had much less effect on the white population) was inadvertently brought by a new immigrant carrying an infection to which white peoples’ immune systems were used but to which the Barrabools had no defence.
    The real disaster was that it was deadly to the young, more than to the old. (Perhaps the old had got some similar but less virulent infection in the past so had some protection.) That was the end. There were no Barrabool women or girls left who cold bear children. The last Barrabool died in 1885. The white community were deeply affected by the tragedy. There’s a huge monument over the grave of the last Barrabool in the old Geelong cemetery, placed there by the white community, commemorating him and noting his identity as the last of his people.

    Fast forward to the present day. The Barrabool clan have been airbrushed out of history, not by the evil white conservatives, but by the “progressive” movement. When I was at school we were taught our local history including the tragic demise of the Barrabool, as part of a factual non-ideological description of the good and the bad of our history. Today it’s all about the “Wathaurong people”, a larger grouping to whom it is said that the Barrabool belonged. I don’t think that’s fake – it could be a bit like being both Greek and European, or Tahitian and Polynesian. However, whatever the position, it does of course facilitate grievance-mongering and rent-seeking promotional exercises like sanctimonious “welcome to country” performances by people whose ancestors would have got a spear stuck into them if they’d walked out of turn onto what is now Geelong.

    If anyone is going to do “welcome to country” ceremonies in Geelong, it should be someone whose ancestors had the right to live on the land even by indigenous reckoning by virtue of grant by the true “traditional owners”. Someone like me. OK, my great grandfather didn’t really live there permanently, he just stayed with his brother for a while, and it was only his widow and my grandfather and his siblings who eventually moved there permanently after the last Barrabool had passed on. However I think that still gives me as much of a claim as any supposed “traditional owner” of today. And certainly one of the fifth or sixth generation of the Strachan family whose ancestor was one of the first three pioneers.


    Report comment

    28
  13. If, for example, there was a policy of removing Aboriginal children solely on the basis that they were Aboriginal children then why would the people of the time hide the evidence? They would have thought they were right in doing it.

    True, ML. The very sad Trevorrow case is an instance. All through the obfuscation, delay, buck passing etc. that happened after it was determined that his father wasn’t unfit to be a parent at all, there’s no record of anyone saying “so what, he’s aboriginal, why does it matter that he’s been taken away?”.


    Report comment

    4
  14. Matersays:
    July 16, 2022 at 11:18 am
    Ohhhh I’m going to grab the popcorn. This series should trigger all the trolls something chronic!

    Good luck to them.
    I’m just going to join the dots, sans the flights of fancy in between.

    The truth is often inconvenient. Another forum I read had a gent provided an extract from a book written by a bloke travelling to SA in the 1930’s where they were attacked by wild aboriginals. Incidents like that will always be airbrushed out in our current times.


    Report comment

    7
  15. Incidents like that will always be airbrushed out in our current times.

    My uncle “went droving” out of Alice Springs in 1947. He narrated observing a group of Aborigines having a meal, of kangaroo. The men got first pick, then the camp dogs, then the scraps were thrown to the women…


    Report comment

    8
  16. No No No….you have it all wrong. Before whitey, the blicks lived a golden life. At dawn they would awake and go down to the river pool to bathe and wash the sleep from there eyes while toast was being cooked on open wood coals. A hand woven basket filled with live bee’s , that children would delve into , pluck a bee out and squeezed honey from out of the bees arse onto the toast. A passing kangaroo would hop by and gladly be beaten on its head and then thrown onto the open wood coal fire to be roasted for dinner that evening . Mums would educate the kids in life lessons and the movement of stars and planets in the universe , while dads solved tribal disputes in ‘mini courts’. Then whitey came along and it all turned to shyt.


    Report comment

    18
  17. “Australia is going to do a Partition. We will cut off the NT, Cape York and the Kimberley, and give it to the Voice people. That’s what they said they want. Then they can have their own parliament and get out of our hair.”

    Funny thing about satire sometimes the truth is closely separated. A contractor I deal with was telling me whites and those with some indigenous bloodlines some who have been there decades are deserting the Cape. Towns are becoming unliveable. A lot of areas once easily accessible by all being shut down. A lot of them vs us too attitude that I have noticed elsewhere as well. We are in unchartered waters as a nation and playing with fire with this crap.


    Report comment

    14
  18. Before whitey, the blicks lived a golden life.

    One prominent West Australian activist made that claim – “couple of days hunting got you enough tucker to feed the whole tribe for a week – plenty of time for ceremony, teach the young ones the song lines and pass on the legends and traditions..”


    Report comment

    4
  19. Zulu Kilo Two Alphasays:
    July 16, 2022 at 3:51 pm
    Before whitey, the blicks lived a golden life.

    One prominent West Australian activist made that claim – “couple of days hunting got you enough tucker to feed the whole tribe for a week – plenty of time for ceremony, teach the young ones the song lines and pass on the legends and traditions..”

    So why have they failed so miserably at doing this?


    Report comment

    9
  20. Open borders will probably preclude the possibility of Australia being smaller in the future. Open borders will also probably remove most advantages or privileges “indigenous” people currently obtain from the guilt ridden white establishment. Fair haired and light skinned people claiming to be indigenous will be the first struck off the list of the privileged, with prejudice.


    Report comment

    5
  21. After all, wasn’t it the British Parliament that enacted the Slave Trade Act in 1807 and formed the West Africa Squadron in an attempt to quash it?
    Slavery wasn’t abolished in the British Empire until 1837 though.
    What took them so long?
    Well, the 1807 actions made existing slaves much more valuable.
    Which was good, since by the time the British Parliament got around to Abolition, those slaves were worth a fortune, and the debt undertaken [from Parisian Banks] to reimburse the slaveowners for their loss wasn’t paid in full until 178 years later.
    Boris Johnson is one of many who still receives regular cheques from the Trust set up to pay out the slaveowners.


    Report comment

  22. Slavery wasn’t abolished in the British Empire until 1837 though.
    What took them so long?

    Thank God. I thought you were dead, Ed.
    For you to go so long without adding some nebulous bullshit, is out of character. Especially on this topic.

    Please keep better focus for the upcoming posts. I expect you to be more responsive next time.


    Report comment

    5
  23. Please keep better focus for the upcoming posts. I expect you to be more responsive next time.

    Game, set and match to Mater, I think.


    Report comment

    4
  24. Ed Casesays:
    July 16, 2022 at 6:54 pm
    Civil War in 19th Century England over Slavery in the West Indies?
    Don’t be a complete fucking idiot all your life?

    Mirror, mirror, on the wall ….


    Report comment

    3
  25. Ed Casesays:
    July 16, 2022 at 6:54 pm
    Civil War in 19th Century England over Slavery in the West Indies?
    Don’t be a complete fucking idiot all your life?

    Bradman in batting.
    Lindrum in billiards.
    Ed in missing the point.


    Report comment

    6
  26. Ed Mong dismisses the chances of a revolution in England because god knows the history of the UK is an ocean of tranquility and nothing else was happening in Europe around the time.


    Report comment

    3
  27. .. deserting the Cape.

    Why wouldn’t you when the Qld government actively depopulating the place by buying up all the large stations and turning them into nature reserves or handing them over to the Aboriginies.


    Report comment

    3
  28. I don’t know who the “voice” people think will vote for this rubbish

    lives wasted in hatred and pointless grifting instead of enjoying the gifts or the modern era

    this has become their occupation, they have all the benefits of a good life, income, education, medical care and housing and yet they remain grieved .. because it is now their persona, their being depends on being angry at whitey who can never do enough

    none of the migrants or refugees to this country think they owe anything at all to a bunch of ill mannered panhandlers

    I don’t wish them ill or otherwise, like any other Australian, I am happy for them to get on with their lives, but don’t associate me with supposed crimes of long ago by people long dead to people long dead. Will not work and I will not be “sorry” for something that has nothing to do with me.

    never was, never will be, my fault

    it has absolutely nothing to do with any of us alive today

    a group of people having privilidge (a voice) because of their race is racism and I won’t be a party to that, ever


    Report comment

    18
  29. billie says:
    July 17, 2022 at 4:09 am

    none of the migrants or refugees to this country think they owe anything at all to a bunch of ill mannered panhandlers

    a very good point.. given the majority of us are less than two generations Australian.

    Another point that really irks me is criticising historical events (and people) using today’s moral lens and laws.

    Mater – I look forward to the popcorn.


    Report comment

    4
  30. I wouldn’t be relying on today’s opinions. There are quite reliable contemporary accounts of the efficacy of the law on aboriginals, one example being that of Rev Lancelot E. Threlkeld, who wrote to the Colonial secretary in 1840 (Threlkeld had been in NSW since 1817). Threlkeld highlighted the paradoxical nature of the colonial courts: “I am now perfectly at a loss to describe to [the Aborigines] their position. Christian laws will hang the aborigines [for] violence done to Christians, but Christian laws will not protect them from the aggressions of nominal Christians, because aborigines must give evidence only upon oath.”


    Report comment

  31. TO

    because aborigines must give evidence only upon oath.”

    And did non-aborigines not also have to “give evidence only upon oath”? What is your point?


    Report comment

  32. Boambee: Not my point, but that of Rev Threlkeld. I expect his point is that they weren’t Christian. I think you will find that Threlkeld provided a number of reports on massacres and incidental abuse and murder in his annual reports to both the Lutheran Mission and the Colonial Office.


    Report comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.