In Mondays post, about three years in Australia, I wondered whether my views would change now that I have got through the honeymoon period.
As I write this, I’m fast approaching my fourth anniversary of life in Australia; will I start to see Oz in a different light?
Well, there is no doubt I am now noticing, on a much more regular basis, some things that are happening in this country that I would class as Australian Bad Things.
Previous Australian bad things have included….
But bad things don’t have to be scary animals, other stuff can be bad too.
- The looming threat of the carbon tax
- Crime on the Gold Coast spiralling out of control
- A current and disturbing outbreak of the Hendra virus
- The report on the flooding in Queensland which blamed nobody
- Politicians (pollies) – although, in fairness, this is universal
- The soaring prices of our utilities
- Being just three months away from another wet season, when we are still recovering from the floods and cyclones of the last
- The overly frequent use of standing ovations in Australia’s Got Talent by Danni Minogue and Brian McFadden. This season of AGT has seen more ovations than the Royal Albert Hall! That can’t be right, can it?
On top of that, we are bombarded almost daily by the media with stories about how (apparently) Australia’s cost of living is out of control.
If all that is not bad enough, they haven’t even started to build the proposed pub, which I was told would be completed by April of this year, here in my sleepy Western suburb of Brisbane!
So, am I going to turn into a whingeing Pom?
Not in the slightest!
I can still recall with some clarity what it was like to live in England, so I look at life in Australia in comparison, not in isolation. And comparatively speaking, the UK, for me, had far more bad things that I’ve got here in Australia.
Don’t get me wrong, the UK is still a good place to live, it’s just that I think it has more bad things than Australia.
But it doesn’t stop me talking about Australia’s Bad Things, so the category I started back in February 2009 will continue, although it will expand beyond the snakes, spiders and sharks (and all the other bad things) that I have been talking about in the past.
In the coming weeks and months I hope to cover all the topics mentioned above, and more! If all goes to plan, next week I’ll be looking at the suggestion that Brisbane is now the 14th most expensive city in the world!
Today’s Australian Bad Thing
This is just a taster of what’s to come and manages to combine two of my bad thing bullets above; pollies and the cost of living in Australia.
Just last week it was announced that the consumer price index (CPI) went up by 0.9% for the quarter ending June 2011. This has taken annual inflation to just over 3.6%, which is above the Reserve Bank’s target.
This jump is explained by our Treasurer; his name is Wayne Swan. It’s the price of bananas!
Well, he didn’t say that directly. But he did blame the increase in the price of fruit, caused by the destruction suffered during Australia’s recent natural disasters, for taking the inflation figures outside of the Reserve Banks target.
Which is interesting, because in 2006 the same Mr Swan accused the opposition Treasurer of “attempting to use bananas as a shield”. On that occasion, Cyclone Larry had destroyed 80% of the banana crop here which had also caused a spike in the CPI.
So is today’s bad thing the price of bananas? No! It’s our Treasurer, Wayne Swan.
Next week, a more serious look at the cost of living in Australia. And, in other posts, plenty of great things about living in Australia too.
Just because there are plenty of great things about living in Australia.
Footnote: Bananas! Bananas! Get your bananas here! Just $14.98 a kilo!