Let me return in today’s rant - the last day of 2021 - to my usual light-hearted, golden Oldies tone.
Oh what a year!
Let’s think about the last year.
It’s been quite a year.
At the start of the year, I feel like most of us (in Melbourne, at least) thought we had FINALLY turned a corner.
The Grand Lizard had ‘fallen down the stairs’, as believable as the abused housewife ‘runs into a door’ to hide her shiner.
For some reason it wasn’t possible to ask questions about the authoritarian’s fall, or why he and his thugs had been running the economy into the ground.
No one really cared, because he was out of the picture. For a brief moment, life started to become Melbourne again, less stress and the general pace picked up.
Short lived, as they shut down the city just before the Valentine’s Day weekend - perhaps, the most cold hearted and cruelest government decision of the year. Driving desperate traders to an even more deflated and depressing situation.
Then I believe Emperor Nero returned and Mr. OCD and his germs started the lock-down BS and social segregation campaigns and the lock-down BS started again. It’s a bit of a blur for me between February and October.
I do remember it being a struggle, so I guess I’ll work through the PTSD in future.
I do recall that the REAL Melburnians, not the Zombies, started going public and pushing back as the year progressed.
Why the government rolled out hit squads and their militia, I do not know? It was COMPLETELY insane.
It was a sad, sad time for Melbourne. I think many of us were heartbroken.
Police started behaving like sub-humans, bashing people needlessly, and loitering around a shut down city, like Zombies in blue suits.
As a result, more protestors became more militant. Walling up the shrine, and using it as a defence and a symbol. While your average Bruce shouted at the protestors from 40km away, it was a scary time for many people living and frequenting the city.
The Shrine protest was wonderful. Despite the rubber bullets, I was so proud that many people risked their life and limb to say, ‘enough of this madness’.
Then there was a tragedy of another Grand Final being thrown away by a crap government. Another blow and heartbreak.
In the later months, 100,000s of protestors came out in the streets to push back against all the excess of the government and media: the lies, the lockdowns, and the legislation.
Many people criticised the protestors, some saying that they don’t do anything. I disagree. They say a lot. They show people care. They give people hope. They also tap into the common humanity of the crowd. Results aren’t always changes to parliament. Instead, reinforcing group identity is important.
While this year has been dominated by covid, and the continuing atrocities of the dictatorship, I see signs of hope and encouragement too.
While boring to me, the rise of minor parties from Mussolini-Bosi, to the United Australia Bogan Party, and many others, seem to be signalling change is ahead.
I can’t help think that there is one empire dying, and new ones rising.
The parallel movement, a collection of interesting people doing interesting things as an alternative or in opposition to the mainstream, is seeing themes and threads forming.
A large of group of people determined to make decisions for themselves have held the line for close to 2 year. Against the most vile of resourced propaganda campaigns - a fully immoral and violent psychological assault - they still say no. ‘Thanks, but no thanks’.
It is indeed better to die on your feet than live on your knees.
Who knows what 2022 will hold in store.
What I do know is that so many people are now stronger, more powerful, and more awake then they have ever been.
What would I call 2021 if I were to give it a name?
Maybe the Year of Turmoil, the Year of Trouble, the Year of Terror.
All these things maybe.
A better one is the Year of Transformation.
Let’s keep the score. All the change started in 2021. Let’s continue to break some stuff, and have fun doing it in 2022.
So much looking forward to the John Wick-style payback that some of these folks will be getting.
Save a midnight kiss for me! (Dudes, a handshake will do).
All the best for 2022!