National Disgrace Day
Depending on your political leanings or nationalistic fervour, April 25 is Australia’s national day of celebration, mourning, remembrance or ‘coming of age’. But Pearl is thinking we need a national day of disgrace on March 25 to coincide with the outing of Australia’s cricket team as disgraceful cheats. It cannot be limited to one day though. It should be a week, or perhaps a month, headed off by Australia’s arbiters of moral standards – the tabloid media (including The Australian, which is just a tabloid for rich people).
Maybe there could be a March of Shame, with the participants attired in baggy greens. I’m a bit scant on details as I’m not a cricket fan, but if Roxy Jacenko is reading this I will be calling upon her assistance as she is the only one brave enough to treat the ‘scandal’ like what it truly is: a PR opportunity.
Labelling the Australian cricket team a ‘national disgrace’ is a bit harsh. Pearl is the ‘take no prisoners’ type, with little sympathy for people who should know better. But please, ‘national disgrace’ is below the belt. Rather, ‘stupid’, ‘juvenile’, ‘brattish’ and ‘desperate’ are words that come to mind; Pearl could have done a better job of ball tampering with her trusty Bernina overlocker! It’s just a game – no one died, Steve Smith didn’t commit troops to a needless war or financially destroy anyone (except himself), or poison players with drug supplements.
This type of news needs to be relegated to the sports section, allowing Australians to get on with the serious issues, like Married at First Sight. Oops, I mean the real news about Australia’s real national disgrace – the banking industry.
Australia has had its fair share of national disgraces and cheating scandals, none of which have copped the media attention that a few pretty boys in white have. We conveniently forget the real cheats – the former Deputy ATO Commissioner’s tax fraud, the AWB’s oil-for-wheat bribery scandal, Kathy Jackson and Michael Lawler’s HSU fraud, ANZ’s manipulation of the bank bill swap rate and the disgusting CommInsure scandal. Which brings me to the banking industry…
Australians consumed with sport and MAFS may be unaware that while a ball was being tampered with in Cape Town, a royal commission into the banking industry was underway in the home of cricket, Melbourne. And while Candice Warner’s lovely face was gracing the TV news reports and the front page of The Terrorgraph, the scandal of an industry replete with bribes, fraudulent loans, dodgy sales figures and junk insurance has been conveniently relegated as an afterthought.
The only thing disgraceful about cricket is 70.2AM’s habit of bumping James Valentine for the summer coverage of the most boring game on earth. Let’s out Australia’s real national disgrace: the banks – an industry that is the most profitable of its kind in the world and has an inordinate influence over Australians and government policy – and indulge in a real sport, bank bashing. Let’s make March 25 National Disgrace Day!