The “Did we massacre the aboriginals or not” debate continues. I have travelled extensively throughout Australia and have yet to notice a groundswell of opinion that agrees with the “black arm” view of white Australians massacring the blacks. I am gregarious and a sociable person and consequently talk to people from all walks of life. I can only conclude that it didn’t happen to the extent that the crazy ‘Left’ would have us believe. The same goes for “racism”. By and large Australians are NOT racist. It is true we don’t like bludgers, wife beaters, alcoholic maniacs, drug users and other peripheral beings but that is only prejudice, not racism. In the press this week Keith Windschuttle released a book questioning the accuracy of Lyndall Ryan’s book The Aboriginal Tasmanians. Windschuttle states that he has gone back to the sources and references she quoted and found a host of inaccuracies. Some newspapers she quoted hadn’t even started publication in the years concerned, some people she referred to weren’t even in Tasmania when the were said to have been involved in the “Massacres”. In answers to these points a pontification of professors wrote to The Australian newspaper and although lengthy in words, the letters were very short on fact. No counter to what could be only classified as serious objections to Ryan’s scholarship. Not one fact verified, no counter argument to Windschuttle writings, simply words along the lines that we, “the uneducated underclass” shouldn’t even listen to Windschuttle as he isn’t a true historian and, worse, The Australian definitely shouldn’t publish articles about or by Windschuttle for the same reasons. This arrogance so prevalent in academia takes my breath away. All this could be just a ripple in the day-to-day life in Australia and I may well have just waited for the debate to die a natural death. This was until I read, in an article by Michael Duffy, that the same Lyndall Ryan was once a research assistant of Manning Clark. Alarm bells are deafening. Dear old Manning never wrote a kind word about Australia and its conservatism. He tried to beatify Lenin, saw all things rosy in Communist Russia and in the end was just a tired grumpy old left wing fool that went out of his way to denigrate the Australian society that had failed to recognize his greatness. Any disciple of Manning Clark is definitely not on my Christmas card list. I conclude that Ryan has too much left wing baggage to be taken seriously. Meanwhile the debate will continue and I look forward to someone from academia coming forward and debating the matter with undeniable facts. Until they do they are just radio static – way off frequency.