Threaten us some more

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Last updated on August 9th, 2017 at 05:46 am

So far as threats go, this probably ranks somewhere below North Korean nuclear tests:

Papua New Guinea is threatening to dramatically reduce the money it receives from Canberra …

(Via Hal G.P. Colebatch)

Posted by Tim B. on 10/31/2006 at 08:28 PM
    1. Lol, this is is straight out of Monty Python. Now I’m waiting for the ‘other, other plan’ to be announced.

      Posted by Nic on 2006 10 31 at 08:34 PM • permalink


    1. That is fine by me however I have a better suggestion, how about instead of New Guinea ginning around with the systerm we cut their aid off alltogether. After all I am sure Sir Michael doesn’t want to see any half measures. I am also sure New Guinea doesn’t rely on Australia’s largesse at all.

      Posted by mordred on 2006 10 31 at 08:35 PM • permalink


    1. The bastards! how could they betray us like this.

      Posted by Harry Buttle on 2006 10 31 at 08:36 PM • permalink


    1. Wow, smooth move, Oz. How do we Yanks get our aid recipients to demand less?

      Posted by Kyda Sylvester on 2006 10 31 at 08:37 PM • permalink


    1. Cool we just saved $300 Million per year. Divide that by 20 million Australians …. thats fifteen bucks for me and the same for the Missus. I think I can get a nice bottle of red for thirty bucks. Sweet.

      Posted by lingus4 on 2006 10 31 at 08:46 PM • permalink


    1. Quick, Mr Howard! Accept their terms before they cut us adrift and let us crash into Antarctica!

      Posted by SwinishCapitalist on 2006 10 31 at 08:48 PM • permalink


    1. In the very long list of comedy gold announcements that have emanated from the PNG “government” over the years since Independence, threatening that they will refuse some of Australia’s aid money is right up there at the top.

      Posted by Pedro the Ignorant on 2006 10 31 at 08:52 PM • permalink


    1. Everyone start making placards- we march in support of PNG in the morning!

      Posted by Mattofact on 2006 10 31 at 08:52 PM • permalink


    1. The insanity of this puts me in mind of the sketch “Four Yorkshiremen”. It’s about who did it toughest – something PNG just might find out about. This takes space but a great laugh.
      The Players:
      Michael Palin – First Yorkshireman;
      Graham Chapman – Second Yorkshireman;
      Terry Jones – Third Yorkshireman;
      Eric Idle – Fourth Yorkshireman;

      The Scene:
      Four well-dressed men are sitting together at a vacation resort.
      ‘Farewell to Thee’ is played in the background on Hawaiian guitar.


      Aye, very passable, that, very passable bit of risotto.
      Nothing like a good glass of Château de Chasselas, eh, Josiah?
      You’re right there, Obadiah.
      Who’d have thought thirty year ago we’d all be sittin’ here drinking Château de Chasselas, eh?
      In them days we was glad to have the price of a cup o’ tea.
      A cup o’ cold tea.
      Without milk or sugar.
      Or tea.
      In a cracked cup, an’ all.
      Oh, we never had a cup. We used to have to drink out of a rolled up newspaper.
      The best we could manage was to suck on a piece of damp cloth.
      But you know, we were happy in those days, though we were poor.
      Because we were poor. My old Dad used to say to me, “Money doesn’t buy you happiness, son”.
      Aye, ‘e was right.
      Aye, ‘e was.
      I was happier then and I had nothin’. We used to live in this tiny old house with great big holes in the roof.
      House! You were lucky to live in a house! We used to live in one room, all twenty-six of us, no furniture, ‘alf the floor was missing, and we were all ‘uddled together in one corner for fear of falling.
      Eh, you were lucky to have a room! We used to have to live in t’ corridor!
      Oh, we used to dream of livin’ in a corridor! Would ha’ been a palace to us. We used to live in an old water tank on a rubbish tip. We got woke up every morning by having a load of rotting fish dumped all over us! House? Huh.
      Well, when I say ‘house’ it was only a hole in the ground covered by a sheet of tarpaulin, but it was a house to us.
      We were evicted from our ‘ole in the ground; we ‘ad to go and live in a lake.
      You were lucky to have a lake! There were a hundred and fifty of us living in t’ shoebox in t’ middle o’ road.
      Cardboard box?
      You were lucky. We lived for three months in a paper bag in a septic tank. We used to have to get up at six in the morning, clean the paper bag, eat a crust of stale bread, go to work down t’ mill, fourteen hours a day, week-in week-out, for sixpence a week, and when we got home our Dad would thrash us to sleep wi’ his belt.
      Luxury. We used to have to get out of the lake at six o’clock in the morning, clean the lake, eat a handful of ‘ot gravel, work twenty hour day at mill for tuppence a month, come home, and Dad would thrash us to sleep with a broken bottle, if we were lucky!
      Well, of course, we had it tough. We used to ‘ave to get up out of shoebox at twelve o’clock at night and lick road clean wit’ tongue. We had two bits of cold gravel, worked twenty-four hours a day at mill for sixpence every four years, and when we got home our Dad would slice us in two wit’ bread knife.
      Right. I had to get up in the morning at ten o’clock at night half an hour before I went to bed, drink a cup of sulphuric acid, work twenty-nine hours a day down mill, and pay mill owner for permission to come to work, and when we got home, our Dad and our mother would kill us and dance about on our graves singing Hallelujah.
      And you try and tell the young people of today that ….. they won’t believe you.
      They won’t!

      Posted by Bonmot on 2006 10 31 at 08:52 PM • permalink


    1. Oh, no!  Cashback terrorism!

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 2006 10 31 at 09:00 PM • permalink


    1. Time to rename your site “Comedy Central”, Tim. Yesterday we had the Palestinian contortionist trying to hide his meat and two veg, and today, this howler! You rock Tim!

      Posted by debi L. on 2006 10 31 at 09:01 PM • permalink


    1. It’s good to see PNG standing up for its principles.

      However, it’s a shame that protecting alleged pedophiles appears to be one of them.

      Bomber Beazley appears to be not so sure.

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2006 10 31 at 09:12 PM • permalink


    1. Next thing you know, they’ll be making phone calls late at night, hanging up as soon as we answer… Pizza’s we didn’t order will be turning up. These thugs are incorrigible.

      Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 10 31 at 09:41 PM • permalink


    1. Could this be a cashback backlash?

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 2006 10 31 at 09:45 PM • permalink


    1. Pleeuz doan’ trow me in da briar patch, Misser Somare!!

      Whatever next- the comfy chair? pipe and slippers?

      By choice, I wouldn’t give PNG the steam off my shit.

      Posted by Habib on 2006 10 31 at 09:50 PM • permalink


    1. Funniest post today! And the underlying story is pretty hilarious, too, featuring a Papuan Defense Minister named Gubag, and the Solomon Islands Attorney-General Designate, who just happens to be an Australian fugitive. Shades of Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop!

      I’m not sure what’s in the Pacific air these days; the U.S. seems to be having a little trouble there, too.

      Posted by paco on 2006 10 31 at 09:57 PM • permalink


    1. PNG we want you to return Australia all the money Australia spent on you in the last 90 years. Tomorrow! In full.

      Posted by stackja1945 on 2006 10 31 at 10:32 PM • permalink


    1. The threatening behaviour spreads: Solomons ‘won’t be blackmailed’ with aid.

      Posted by C.L. on 2006 10 31 at 10:38 PM • permalink


    1. Actually, the PNGns are not being as silly as it might seem. They know that Australia HAS to spend the aid money it’s committed (and you’ve never seen panic like AusAID trying to unload the last few million bucks just before the end of the financial year)and so they play these political games. Add to that a cultural value that places obligations on the giver rather than the receiver (the Big Man is the one that distributes the most largesse) and the PNG government’s attitude is not that hard to understand. But what’s satifying is that all this Melanesian huffing and puffing stems from the Aussies embedded in the various bureacracies who are slowly but surely closing in on the corruption. Over the past couple of years there has been a steady stream of civil servants from the Tax Office and the Finance Department marched out in handcuffs by armed cops to paddy wagons, and in front of the media, and quite a few successful prosecutions. That never happened in the 90s. The bastards thought they were pretty well untouchable. Not any more.

      Posted by Willmott Fribbish on 2006 10 31 at 10:43 PM • permalink


    1. Let’s see.  How much foreign aid do we give Kalifornia and Puerto Rico anyway.  I’m thinking balanced budget here.

      Posted by yojimbo on 2006 10 31 at 10:48 PM • permalink


    1. Fribbish

      We just started our “year” here on October 1st so we are good to go.

      Posted by yojimbo on 2006 10 31 at 10:50 PM • permalink


    1. Pressurized Natural Gas, right?

      Posted by triticale on 2006 10 31 at 11:00 PM • permalink


    1. Ah yes, dignity before viability every time.

      Pity the poor PNG citizen, with leadership prepared to sacrifice crucial infrastructure
      to the demands of overwheening conceit.

      Bit like a panhandler demanding to be addressed as ‘sir’.  You can bet it won’t be the political elite there who’ll be doing without.

      Sori tumas.

      Posted by Olrence on 2006 10 31 at 11:02 PM • permalink


    1. #6 Swinish
      Don’t be silly, we wanna be cut loose and drift into Antarctica – solve the glowball warmenising PDQ.

      Posted by kae on 2006 10 31 at 11:07 PM • permalink


    1. How ‘bout we see ‘em, and raise ‘em the rest?

      Posted by kae on 2006 10 31 at 11:09 PM • permalink


    1. From what I understand of Ozzies in the Top End, this would bve just fine.

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2006 10 31 at 11:25 PM • permalink


    1. Good news, Australia!  According to Al Gore, all the Pacific islands will be underwater in a couple of years, so the financial aid thingy is moot anyway.

      Posted by RebeccaH on 2006 10 31 at 11:31 PM • permalink


    1. As they say up that way:-
      PNG – problem blong you

      Posted by Bonmot on 2006 10 31 at 11:37 PM • permalink


    1. #18 It sounds like Mr. Sogavare, of the Solomon Islands, is pissed off because he isn’t receiving enough cash himself.

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2006 10 31 at 11:38 PM • permalink


    1. #14 Didn’t this happen once before, making this a case of cashback backlash flashback?

      Posted by Wimpy Canadian on 2006 10 31 at 11:40 PM • permalink


    1. By choice, I wouldn’t give PNG the steam off my shit.

      I am hoping that someday Habib will throw off these chains of moderation, and tell us his true feelings.  Sir, I scroll the comments sections just hoping to see your name!

      Posted by Major John on 2006 10 31 at 11:48 PM • permalink


    1. #23 Olrence

      It would be good to know how much Australian aid has ended up in Gold Coast and Port Douglas prime real estate. A fair bit I’d say. I personally know of a former Education Minister who invested the whole country’s school grants in a personal IBD and used the interest to buy an apartment complex in northern NSW somewhere. Then he released the grants in October, ensuring none of the kids had textbooks, school lunches etc for just about the whole year.  I’d like to see some kind of tightening up of the rules about PNG investment in Australia. That would be more persuasive than sabre rattling about our aid.

      Posted by Willmott Fribbish on 2006 10 31 at 11:50 PM • permalink


    1. #19 Mr. Fribbish. Your most excellent explanation of the cultural undercurrents that run beneath this seemingly farcical statement by the PNG gov’t. has had an inadvertent side effect of giving me a migraine as well as a back-ache.

      You see, I could not, for the life of me, remember the name of the custom practiced by Native Americans of the Pacific Northwest, made illegal in Canada in 1884 and in the US a short time later.

      In this practice, a gift economy existed with the social expectation that all deals and exchanges were on equal terms.

      I finally found the word I sought in an old, dog-eared American Indian Lexicon at the bottom of box under a stack about four high.


      The Potlatch was seen by Westerners as essentially the equivalent of ripping someone off in a standard economy, and viewed as unfair to the recipient—who might be deliberately paupered by an ill-intentioned rival proffering a gifts of such wealth they could not possibly be equalled, much less bettered.

      Potlatch. Whew…don’t you hate it when that happens?

      Oh, and once I had the word, I remember why I sought it out in the first place: the Sepik Coast Exchange is a similar practice in Papua New Guinea.

      Posted by MentalFloss on 2006 10 31 at 11:52 PM • permalink


    1. The new weapon of the third world.
      Rejection of aid. Wow! This is potent. Bit like a suicide belt but with money, not explosives.

      Posted by Bonmot on 2006 11 01 at 12:01 AM • permalink


    1. #33 MentalFloss

      Interesting. I know a few PNG people who keep detailed computer records of what has been given and received by whom in bride price ceremonies, funeral feasts etc so they don’t experience the shame of being seen to give less than they received. Those without computers try to keep the tally in their heads, and spend a lot of time arguing and fighting with their relatives over who owes what. Not a lot of time left over for actually generating the wealth.

      Posted by Willmott Fribbish on 2006 11 01 at 12:09 AM • permalink


    1. #32.  Mr Fribbish, yes.  I’ve long observed the phenomenon of a remote bikman who’s scarcely in the cash economy suddenly being elected to parliament (salary ieAUD40K), made a minister in short order by selling his voting alliegence
      (salary now AUD60k), and as a minister of the crown acquires a block of flats in Cairns.

      All within a couple of years.

      And in the meantime, their constituents do without the most basic resources.  No medicine, schools, roads, jobs, hope.

      Indeed, 3 decades on from independence, all basic indicators contimue to go the wrong way, despite undreamed-of wealth from minerals and energy royalties.

      PNG has been very poorly served by their national leadership.  A bloody disgrace.

      Posted by Olrence on 2006 11 01 at 12:14 AM • permalink


    1. Third world, kleptocratic, economic basket case rejects aid.

      Arts student gets job.

      Environmentalist sticks to facts.

      Posted by Infidel Tiger on 2006 11 01 at 12:18 AM • permalink


    1. Wimpy

      Or simply deja vu all over again.

      Posted by yojimbo on 2006 11 01 at 12:27 AM • permalink


    1. Various cargo cults are still rife in these areas.  This seems to be somehow related:

      A cargo cult is any of a group of religious movements in Melanesia, in the Southwestern Pacific, which believe that manufactured western goods (‘cargo’) have been created by ancestral spirits and intended for Melanesian people. Cult members believe that white people, however, have unfairly gained control of these objects. Cargo cults thus focus on overcoming what they perceive as undue ‘white’ influences by conducting rituals similar to the white behavior they have observed, presuming that the ancestors will at last recognize their own and send them cargo. Thus a characteristic feature of Cargo Cults is the belief that spiritual agents will at some future time give much valuable cargo and desirable manufactured products to the cult members.Contents [hide]

      …The cult participants generally do not fully understand the significance of manufacturing or commerce. They have limited purchasing ability. Their understanding of western society, religion, and economics may be rudimentary. These cults are a response to the resulting confusion and insecurity. They rationalize their situation by the reference to religious and magical symbols they associate with Christianity…

      Posted by walterplinge on 2006 11 01 at 12:28 AM • permalink


    1. In Vanuatu the locals still wait for the return of John Clumm – the pilot who started the Cargo Cult. I remember witnessing in 1989 a Cargo Cult Ceremony in Santos – the most elaborate and sacred of the Ni Van rituals. It was amazing. The white guys/tourists who witnessed this were warned under no circumstances were we to try to explain the whole think was hokum or were we to laugh. This is serious.
      Read about it here

      Posted by Bonmot on 2006 11 01 at 12:40 AM • permalink


    1. Have all the South Pacific Islands gone loopy? Or is at all due to subliminal messages from the HoWARd government? All we need now is for Milk Shake and his merry band of followers to threaten to go home if we don’t cover up our “meat”. I suggest we men of Oz by these and show off a bit of our own “meat”.

      Posted by Lofty on 2006 11 01 at 01:09 AM • permalink


    1. Beasley’s promising that if the ALP is elected next year, he’ll send Kev Rudd to plead with the New Guineans to reverse their decision…

      “Come on guys take some more money, please? Pretty please? Aw come on, you know you want it. Youse are just like the Labor Party: you can be had”.

      Posted by mr magoo on 2006 11 01 at 01:10 AM • permalink


    1. It bears repeating:

      On any given day, on any given topic; here at Blair’s Place you can vent your spleen AND (whether you want to or not) always learn something new and interesting.

      Posted by MentalFloss on 2006 11 01 at 01:26 AM • permalink


    1. I wonder whether the threat is not as empty as it sounds. One of the problems in the Solomons was the influence of Taiwanese money in their political system. I think what the PNG government is saying is “we’ll stop taking your money and start taking someone else’s”. I suppose that would mean the Taiwanese or the Chinese (PRC).

      Posted by SingleMalt on 2006 11 01 at 02:43 AM • permalink


    1. This reminds me of that send up of Cowboy/Western movies in the Eighties ( might have been a Mel Brooks number) where an African American guy holds a sixshooter to his own head and says to his would be assailants
      “one move and the nigger gets it”

      Posted by the nailgun on 2006 11 01 at 03:00 AM • permalink


    1. #44 SingleMalt

      In PNG they have this thing called the “look North policy” which they take out and dust off whenever they get the shits with Australia. This cargo cult variation has it that Asian countries such as China and Malaysia will rush in to fill the aid gap left if Australia pulls out, but it ain’t so. It quickly becomes obvious that the political and economic price demanded by such countries for mediocre amounts of aid is very high (“sign over your fisheries, your forests, your mineral leases etc”). PNG politicians are probably among the cheapest on the market, but even they about turn pretty smartly when faced with the real possibility of Australian aid cuts.

      Posted by Willmott Fribbish on 2006 11 01 at 03:06 AM • permalink


    1. 45. Nailgun. – the classic Mel Brooks ‘Blazing Saddles’

      Posted by Harry Buttle on 2006 11 01 at 03:23 AM • permalink


    1. Blazing Saddles! Remember the scene where the mufti leaps out from behind a rock and says “Where the uncovered catmeat at?”
      Hm. Maybe that was another movie.

      Posted by SwinishCapitalist on 2006 11 01 at 03:53 AM • permalink


    1. Thanks Harry – I kept thinking “Smoking” something and couldn’t get any further. I can sleep tonight without tossing and turning thinking what “the Blazes was that movie, Holy sh… that’s it Blazing Saddles.”

      Posted by the nailgun on 2006 11 01 at 04:39 AM • permalink


    1. #19 Willmott Fribbish. Maybe its just me, but I found the comment a whole lot humorous before I read your’s. It is just me, isn’t it? I knew it. Damn.

      Posted by Texas Bob on 2006 11 01 at 06:05 AM • permalink


    1. Like a little kid threatening to hold his breath until he dies unless he gets his way.

      But in this case he might mean it. Afterall the kid doing the big talking is not the kid who will asphyxiate.

      Posted by geoff on 2006 11 01 at 06:28 AM • permalink


    1. Agreed Willmott Fribbish.

      A few years back there was an attempted coup in PNG.  What the media managed (big surprise here) to ignore was the fact that the head of the Chinese Navy had visited Port Moresby only a few days earlier.  I have no doubt that he arrived with a brown paper bag full of US dollars and left empty handed.

      Somare isn’t stupid.  He’s actually threatening Australia with something very serious: if we don’t dance to their tune Port Moresby will become a Chinese Naval base.


      Posted by murph on 2006 11 01 at 06:47 AM • permalink


    1. Somare isn’t stupid.  He’s actually threatening Australia with something very serious: if we don’t dance to their tune Port Moresby will become a Chinese Naval base.

      There will be no dancing to this prick’s tune. Port Morseby will never become a Chinese naval base. There will be no need for a full scale military intervention. And the Highlands will have as much long pig as they can handle courtesy of Australian special forces.

      Not a bad solution when you think about it. Politicians get out of control? Eat the bastards. We could learn from that.

      Posted by geoff on 2006 11 01 at 07:19 AM • permalink


    1. Underwear for men from “aussiebum” and the range is called Patriot…
      Wow we ROCK in Straya..

      Posted by crash on 2006 11 01 at 10:02 AM • permalink


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