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John Passant

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June 2011



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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

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The children of the revolution?

It is 10 p.m and I am in Byron Bay. It has been an eventful day. From Canberra to Sydney to Ballina by plane and then a hired car in the dark and rain finds me driving to Lismore.

Should I be worried? I am. Parents want contact. Children may not understand that. Even adult children.

I knock on the door and a friend of his answers. Michael is in the background. ‘Oh hi, Dad.. What are you doing here?’ Something about butter not melting in mouths comes to mind. Or maybe that is out of the mouths of babes that I am thinking of.

Except he is not a baby. He is a man with his own life. We want to be part of it, from a distance and occasionally. Perhaps we have become our children’s children.

Ring us to let us know you are OK? His phone is broken. Getting it fixed presents logistic problems – the scourge of a regional city. And of course the big city repairs didn’t work.

Email? Oh I don’t check that at all.

The course shows that maybe teaching is not for him.

His friends are making music their almost careers. The drummer is on a tour of Japan tomorrow as part of an acapella group. The bassist has joined his sister’s lesbian country music band and is touring Australia and Europe.

He baits me about football and soy chai lattes. And my terrible puns. We laugh together.

It is in the everyday we live our lives. This discussion of the banal is the most important part of my life at the moment. It is the liberation, the liberation of love.

For the first time in months I can sleep well, knowing he is safe and our love remains.



Comment from Tony
Time June 2, 2011 at 11:58 pm

Enjoy the time there, John.

The marxist sociology article was dense, but gave me some appreciation of the field. Thanks.

Comment from John
Time June 3, 2011 at 7:24 am

Yes Tony. There are more accessible and more modern pieces. I’ll find some.

Comment from Terrance
Time June 3, 2011 at 9:10 am

Lovely sentiments John.

Comment from Graham Dooley
Time June 3, 2011 at 11:18 am

You hold ’em the day they are born then spend the rest of your life trying to convince yourself it’s time to let go. Glad you tracked him down.

Comment from Calligula
Time June 3, 2011 at 7:55 pm

You said –
Perhaps we become our children’s children?

Not a hope John – the buggers are too irresponsible to be parents – until it actually happens to ‘em in their turn and it indeed becomes their turn to have a fit of the worries.
That’s when they wake up.

For once that upstaging Mr. Dooley cut to the core and said so very well.
Don’t weaken for a minute.
He’ll be back to his own self tomorrow.

“Except he is not a baby”
Of course not – except in your soul and mind.

And there are no Gods
Except those you want to protect your own for that space of time ‘til you arrive and assure yourself everything, thank God, is fine.

May I ask though, now your equilibrium has returned –
What puns does the lad refer to?

Comment from John
Time June 4, 2011 at 1:44 pm

Tony, maybe this one on human nature might be easier to read. ABC of socialism: H is for Human nature.

Comment from dl
Time June 4, 2011 at 3:52 pm

John, I just finished reading the socialist alternative article you linked to. Intruiging, as the paradigm of historical materialism is one that I generally have alot of time for. But I do think that the claim that the organized warfare only began 10,000 years ago (presumably coinciding with the beginning of nation states) to be a bit of a disingenuous claim, although the explanation that upper classes conduct warfare mainly to protect/expand their own wealth/assets seems to comport fairly well with historical evidence and one can adduce many of todays wars as corroboration this fact. But the inhumanity of man to man in terms of violence has pretty much always occured, one could cite the fact that an estimated 25-30% of Koori males were dying as a result of homicide (i’ll include warfare amongst tribes as a prime cause of this) prior to the arrival of the British. As a qualifier, though, this was minor compared to the indignities and death imposed on them by the arrival of these said Europeans.

Otherwise, the above post you made was a pleasant change. Reading your blog, I have always somehow assumed that you never had children. (warning, the linked article is from the economist, that bastion of free market propaganda. Linked article)

Comment from juanR
Time June 4, 2011 at 8:19 pm

“Except he is not a baby. He is a man with his own life. We want to be part of it, from a distance and occasionally. Perhaps we have become our children’s children.”

Thank you John. What a beautifully written paragraph, it makes a lot of the SA’s stuff sound hollow.

Going through a similar situation myself right now, it brought tears to my eyes.

I always knew it, you are more than politics, you very human.

Keep up the good work.

(Would love to discuss the “Spanish Revolution” and “Puerta del Sol” one day with you)

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