Let’s face it: It really is just about the cash

Caption: Importuning the Sky Dragon to beam down the cash is the newest, savviest Cargo cult.

In the late 19th and early 20th century cargo cults began to emerge on many Pacific islands. Apparently inspired by contact with advanced, industrialised societies, cargo cults were centred around the belief that ritually building airstrips and the like would magically result in the appearance of the valuable manufactured goods, or ?cargo?, that outsiders had brought with them.

A new cargo cult is now gripping many Pacific nations: climate change. These often resource-poor and overpopulated island nations have cottoned on that invoking the Sky Dragon will guilt rich Westerners into handing over lots of cargo.

But woe betide any politician crass enough to say so. Quote:

New Environment Minister Melissa Price has been accused of insulting regional neighbours by telling a Pacific leader the region was “always” seeking “cash” from Australia.

The former president of Kiribati, Anote Tong, was dining with a group in Canberra last night when Ms Price approached.

Multiple sources have told the ABC the newly installed Cabinet Minister said to Mr Tong: “I know why you’re here. It is for the cash.

“For the Pacific, it is always about the cash. I have my chequebook here. How much do you want?” End of quote.

It?s impossible to say whether this is true or not. Unlike when Peter Dutton cracked a joke about Pacific islanders? climate alarmism, there was no handy boom mic. Just a couple of people who really don?t like the Coalition government. Quote:

Labor frontbencher Pat Dodson conveyed the comments in a letter to Ms Price and the Prime Minister today in which Senator Dodson demanded an apology for Mr Tong, a former Nobel Prize nominee.

Director of the Edmund Rice Centre Phil Glendenning, who was also at the dinner, confirmed the comments were made. End of quote.

It might also be helpful to point out that the Edmund Rice Centre is heavily invested in campaigning for asylum seekers, as well as promulgating the so-called ?Earth Charter?. Phil Glendenning is also a long-time asylum-seeker advocate. A Labor minister and a refugee-botherer? Surely they wouldn?t have any motive to try and hit the government?

Then, right on cue, the dogs started barking on the left of the house, usual suspects included. After all, where there?s a whiff of climate alarmism and illegals on boats, Sarah Sea-Patrol is sure to be yapping on the trail. Quote:

Federal Labor said the exchange was disrespectful and “beggars belief”.

“This is an appalling contribution from Melissa Price,” Shadow Climate Change Minister Mark Butler said.

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young labelled Ms Price “the worst environment minister ever”.

“She dismisses not just the science [of climate change and] she now dismisses the views and the very heartfelt advocacy of leaders in the region.” End of quote.

Assuming that Rice did say what was alleged, was she wrong? Quote:

When asked about the encounter, Mr Tong told Sky News: “Really that’s not important, it’s hardly relevant to the mission that I’m trying to embark on.” End of quote.

Mission? Quote:

the Edmund Rice Centre?s Pacific Calling Partnership is bringing one of the world?s foremost voices for climate justice to Australia. End of quote.

Back in 2011, Tong also talked about: Quote:

The need [to] make climate change adaptation funding available to finance the implementation of critical programmes to tackle the impact of climate change. End of quote.

Call me a cynic, but that does sound like asking for the cash.