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A modest proposal on public holidays [With poll]

By 30 April 2012 89

Let’s get with the program people. It’s 2012 and we’re not all white anglo saxon protestants around here trooping of to church every Sunday and observing the Sabbath.

Why should the Christians get all the holidays while Diwali, Hanukkah, Lunar new year, the Eid ul fitr, Nowruz, or Kwaanza are not?

To say nothing of the massive embuggerance to pretty much everyone of shutting the whole country down while we’re all forced to take a day off most at any given moment don’t give a damn about.

Not to mention the high farce in Canberra of “Family and Community Day” the holiday to replace the trade unionists picnic day which we can’t even find anything concrete to commemorate so we farm it out to warm fuzzies.

But the solution, for my money, isn’t to foist more command and control down from above.

Rather let’s empower individual choice.

What would you think dear reader if you were able to designate ten days a year on your calendar as significant to you and if your employer wants you to come in on those days they pay triple time?

Public holidays

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89 Responses to A modest proposal on public holidays [With poll]
#31
EvanJames2:15 pm, 30 Apr 12

Getting rid of public holidays and turning them into 10 discretionary days off would mean we lose them. Also, part of the scene is that they are events, marked in the calendar, something of remark and note.

As for celebrating other cultures’ holidays, sure, when they celebrate ours. There seems to be a one-sided stampede to reduce our own cultural markers while inflating those of other cultures, after all, they wear funnier clothes and have more interesting food, so their cultures are “stronger” than ours. Our public holidays, with the exception of that fake ACT Government one, are part of our culture and they mark out the year.

#32
Duffbowl2:15 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

And because 63% self identify as christian with no particular christian practice (or heaven forfend understanding) you would knock back a proposal which would still let christians practice christian holidays but let everyone else have a fair crack too?

So, only Christians that are recognised under some system as being Christian are entitled? Cool.

Personally, I thought sharing of the religious holidays was a very Christian thing to do ;)

#33
devils_advocate2:16 pm, 30 Apr 12

I’m a catholic. I’ll keep my days off, thanks.

Now I don’t know if other religions require days off for observance. Maybe they like other things, like concealing their faces in public, banning plastic bags or having special lanes screened off in swimming pools.

But if they want days off as well then I don’t oppose their right to have them. They can use their popular influence like everyone else these days.

This approach probably won’t work out well for businesses – especially small businesses – but that boat sailed eons ago.

#34
HenryBG2:21 pm, 30 Apr 12

Duffbowl said :

- Other religions (4.9%)

I’m happy if we give them 4.9% of our public holidays.
That’s 4 hours 42 minutes per annum (4 hours 24 minutes and 40 seconds for the pubes among us).

They can fight it out amongst themselves to decide whose holy day gets up.

#35
HenryBG2:23 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

And because 63% self identify as christian with no particular christian practice (or heaven forfend understanding) you would knock back a proposal which would still let christians practice christian holidays but let everyone else have a fair crack too?

In what way can “everyone else” currently not practice their holidays as they see fit?

#36
johnboy2:27 pm, 30 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

In what way can “everyone else” currently not practice their holidays as they see fit?

Because they have to shut up shop on days they care nothing for and yet get no consideration for their own days.

if staff get triple time for their designated days of significance I can bet you bosses would be lining up to let them have the day off.

Somewhat in reverse in the hospitality industry they’re always oversubscribed with staff willing to work christmas to get the penalty rates.

#37
Deref2:33 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

Because the phases of the moon in relation to a 2 millennia ago event held sacred by a faith you don’t even follow is the rational basis for your work life?

Tch, JB – the Easter Bunny died for your sins! Isn’t that enough reason for a holiday?

Let’s have more! How about Festivus?

#38
HenryBG2:36 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

HenryBG said :

In what way can “everyone else” currently not practice their holidays as they see fit?

Because they have to shut up shop on days they care nothing for and yet get no consideration for their own days.

So you’re suggesting that 63% of the population “have to shut up shop on days they care nothing for” on account of the 4.9% who do care about those days?

Do we have any stats on the percentage of this 4.9% who actually get their knickers in a twist over this?
Or is this a PC-initiative being pushed on their behalf by rather-too-earnest vegetarians?

#39
youami2:37 pm, 30 Apr 12

Duffbowl said :

“It’s 2012 and we’re not all white anglo saxon protestants around here trooping of to church every Sunday and observing the Sabbath.”

You’re right. I’m not a white anglo saxon protestant; I’m white-ish anglo celt agnostic anglican. I certainly don’t troop off to church on any Sunday, as I’m not keen on organised religion. However, according to the ABS, 68% of Australians still consider themselves to be Christian in 2001. The next biggest groups were:
- No religion (15.5%)
- Not stated/ inadequately described (11.7%)
- Other religions (4.9%)

Of course the difficulty with using the census is that people who are not “practicising” or who consider themselves agnostic or borderline atheist have in the past generally still ticked the religion of their upbringing and/or the religion that they were baptised against.

Did you, Duffbowl, would (or had) tick(ed) in the census “Anglican” even though you admit yourself you are agnostic and non-practising?

I would suggest that there are significantly more than 15.5% who have no formal established religion because they either completed the census wrong by assuming that religion status also includes non-practicising or they didn’t want to offend. Non-practicising means just that, you are either not religious in the first place or you are simply not aligned to the stream of your religious upbringing. I was baptised Presbyterian but I am an atheist now so my upbringing is a moot point.

Of course if anyone who is non-practising yet still thinks there is a magic and mystical almighty in the sky, then I would put it to them that they are simply a non-denominational believer in an omnipotent monotheist etc (either #29 or #699) not anything else (eg. not Anglican #201 in your case Duffbowl).

#40
Someonesmother2:40 pm, 30 Apr 12

My lucky husband gets the both of Australian and American holidays. I want his job!

#41
johnboy2:42 pm, 30 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

Or is this a PC-initiative being pushed on their behalf by rather-too-earnest vegetarians?

Erm, it’s one writer, me, thought bubbling a better way to organise society to the benefit of all not just the largest single grouping in a diverse society (at not cost whatsoever to that grouping and in fact with significant advantages to all concerned).

#42
fnaah2:45 pm, 30 Apr 12

“in fact I think the whole calendar needs a revamp. Why have 7 days a week because of some story in the bible. I say we move to a ten day week; three days on, one day off, four days on, two days off. As we can’t change the number of days in a year there would need to be a 5 day end of year festival (6 in a leap year) to sync up the astronomical cycle. No public holidays, just 14 days annual leave which would make the number of days worked in a year the same as now.”

This is the best idea I’ve heard in a long time.

As an atheist, I feel like a hypocrite for enjoying the time off granted to me by our sky-fairy-believing overlords, and often wonder what other non-christian people make of the whole arrangement.

Is it just me, or are the most intolerant responses here coming from the god-botherers (as usual)?

#43
poetix2:48 pm, 30 Apr 12

youami said :

johnboy said :

Remind me again why the day a jew was crucified 2,000 years ago, as signified by phases of the moon is a cause for non christians to not go to work now, while those non christians still have to work the days they do care about?

Not to mention there is no evidence whatsoever that anyone that went by the name of Jesus Christ was even crucified. And also keep in mind Christmas in all it’s glory is a pagan holiday celebrating the Winter solstice and gift giving from Saturnalia. And I support johnboy’s claim that Australia was not founded on Christianity, it was almost the opposite given the socio-economic class that the convicts derived from.

Not that I believe everything I read, especially Wikipedia, following link does have some great references to look up. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreligion_in_Australia

Could we try and discuss the proposal without bashing any particular religion?

#44
Mysteryman3:03 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

Mysteryman said :

We had some 80 or so years of convicts being sent here, the last of which occured quite some time before federation (or the process thereof). Voluntary migration was a much, much larger part of shaping our nation, as were the people born here. According to the records, some 96% of people in Australia in 1901 identified themselves as being Christian. And still more than 63% as of 6 years ago. Hardly representative of “a distinct lack of Christian values”.

Ahh right, so you’re only counting since federation now?

And because 63% self identify as christian with no particular christian practice (or heaven forfend understanding) you would knock back a proposal which would still let christians practice christian holidays but let everyone else have a fair crack too?

Do you not know the difference between a colony and a nation? Probably best to familiarise yourself with the terms if you’re going to make claims about what a country is, or it not, founded on.

No, I would knock back the proposal because I think it’s foolish. How is allowing anyone to take their own public holidays going to improve productivity (which seems to be one of your complaints)? Planning around absence and periods of down time is easy to do with a set calendar of sactioned public holidays. Allowing people to take off whichever days they want to will make things far more complicated, and harder to account and plan for.

#45
johnboy3:06 pm, 30 Apr 12

Mysteryman said :

Do you not know the difference between a colony and a nation? Probably best to familiarise yourself with the terms if you’re going to make claims about what a country is, or it not, founded on.

I’m sorry what day is Australia celebrated on again?

#46
VYBerlinaV8_is_back3:07 pm, 30 Apr 12

poetix said :

youami said :

johnboy said :

Remind me again why the day a jew was crucified 2,000 years ago, as signified by phases of the moon is a cause for non christians to not go to work now, while those non christians still have to work the days they do care about?

Not to mention there is no evidence whatsoever that anyone that went by the name of Jesus Christ was even crucified. And also keep in mind Christmas in all it’s glory is a pagan holiday celebrating the Winter solstice and gift giving from Saturnalia. And I support johnboy’s claim that Australia was not founded on Christianity, it was almost the opposite given the socio-economic class that the convicts derived from.

Not that I believe everything I read, especially Wikipedia, following link does have some great references to look up. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreligion_in_Australia

Could we try and discuss the proposal without bashing any particular religion?

No we can’t. After all, a free country means it’s acceptable to lambast any religion you don’t believe in or disagree with.

#47
Mysteryman3:11 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

Mysteryman said :

Do you not know the difference between a colony and a nation? Probably best to familiarise yourself with the terms if you’re going to make claims about what a country is, or it not, founded on.

I’m sorry what day is Australia celebrated on again?

What has that got to do with the issue? You’re really grasping at straws, mate.

#48
macekcry3:13 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnyboy is an idiot we need a coup

#49
Duffbowl3:14 pm, 30 Apr 12

youami said :

Did you, Duffbowl, would (or had) tick(ed) in the census “Anglican” even though you admit yourself you are agnostic and non-practising?

I would suggest that there are significantly more than 15.5% who have no formal established religion because they either completed the census wrong by assuming that religion status also includes non-practicising or they didn’t want to offend. Non-practicising means just that, you are either not religious in the first place or you are simply not aligned to the stream of your religious upbringing. I was baptised Presbyterian but I am an atheist now so my upbringing is a moot point.

Of course if anyone who is non-practising yet still thinks there is a magic and mystical almighty in the sky, then I would put it to them that they are simply a non-denominational believer in an omnipotent monotheist etc (either #29 or #699) not anything else (eg. not Anglican #201 in your case Duffbowl).

I do apologise, I forgot to post the more granular Religious Groups list. Under that, the ABS recognises, for example, two Anglican groups; Anglican Church of Australia (#2012), and Anglican Catholic Church (#2013). However, Islam is still lumped together, as is Judaism. Given the range, I’ll just suggest folk have a look for themselves.

I self identified in my comment as an agnostic anglican more in jest than anything else. Most people think of the Anglican Church as being protestant; the church itself claims to be Catholic and Apostolic, as announced in the creed.

I do take issue that saying because a person self identifies but does not attend a fixed religious service lessens their right to call themselves a member of a certain religion, as it seems somewhat condescending.

#50
johnboy3:14 pm, 30 Apr 12

Mysteryman said :

johnboy said :

Mysteryman said :

Do you not know the difference between a colony and a nation? Probably best to familiarise yourself with the terms if you’re going to make claims about what a country is, or it not, founded on.

I’m sorry what day is Australia celebrated on again?

What has that got to do with the issue? You’re really grasping at straws, mate.

Hmm, what have we here…

Australia Day (previously known as Anniversary Day, Foundation Day, and ANA Day) is the official national day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, the date commemorates the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove in 1788 and the proclamation at that time of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of New Holland.

Although it was not known as Australia Day until over a century later, records of celebrations on 26 January date back to 1808, with the first official celebration of the formation of New South Wales held in 1818. It is presently an official public holiday in every state and territory of Australia and is marked by the presentation of the Australian of the Year Awards on Australia Day Eve, announcement of the Honours List for the Order of Australia and addresses from the Governor-General and Prime Minister.

With community festivals, concerts and citizenship ceremonies the day is celebrated in large and small communities and cities around the nation. Australia Day has become the biggest annual civic event in Australia.

But no, I’m sure you’re right.

#51
Mysteryman3:30 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

Mysteryman said :

johnboy said :

Mysteryman said :

Do you not know the difference between a colony and a nation? Probably best to familiarise yourself with the terms if you’re going to make claims about what a country is, or it not, founded on.

I’m sorry what day is Australia celebrated on again?

What has that got to do with the issue? You’re really grasping at straws, mate.

Hmm, what have we here…

Australia Day (previously known as Anniversary Day, Foundation Day, and ANA Day) is the official national day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, the date commemorates the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove in 1788 and the proclamation at that time of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of New Holland.

Although it was not known as Australia Day until over a century later, records of celebrations on 26 January date back to 1808, with the first official celebration of the formation of New South Wales held in 1818. It is presently an official public holiday in every state and territory of Australia and is marked by the presentation of the Australian of the Year Awards on Australia Day Eve, announcement of the Honours List for the Order of Australia and addresses from the Governor-General and Prime Minister.

With community festivals, concerts and citizenship ceremonies the day is celebrated in large and small communities and cities around the nation. Australia Day has become the biggest annual civic event in Australia.

But no, I’m sure you’re right.

That’s great, but it’s still got nothing to do with the point. The forming of the Australian nation and the founding of a British colony are not the same thing. Keep trying, though.

#52
chewy143:31 pm, 30 Apr 12

I don’t know how this proposal would be supposed to increase productivity.

If anything it would make things significantly worse as large sections of the community would want to have many different days off creating massive headaches for businesses.
ie most people would want to have Christmas/New Years time off regardless of religious reasons.

It also ignores the fact that most people already have 4weeks leave every year and can choose to take off important days to them already.

I don’t actually care what days public holidays are on but I would say that they have to be the same for everyone.

#53
johnboy3:37 pm, 30 Apr 12

Mysteryman said :

That’s great, but it’s still got nothing to do with the point. The forming of the Australian nation and the founding of a British colony are not the same thing. Keep trying, though.

Yes, the national day is wrong and you are right.

#54
Tetranitrate3:47 pm, 30 Apr 12

I can’t see anything wrong with the plan. It could be done very simply, but only by the feds.
-increase leave entitlements for part/full time workers to compensate
-proportionately increase the casual loading for casuals
-eliminate the holidays
all done.

#55
johnboy3:48 pm, 30 Apr 12

personally I’d run it as a seperate entitlement to leave, but yours works too.

#56
mickey3:54 pm, 30 Apr 12

johnboy said :

personally I’d run it as a seperate entitlement to leave, but yours works too.

I used to work for a large IT organisation where we were entitled to one day off every calendar year as global diversity day. This was to encourage us to have the day off on days of cultural or religious significance. This day off was not part of our annual leave balance.
I kinda miss GDD now. *sigh*

#57
Deref3:58 pm, 30 Apr 12

poetix said :

Could we try and discuss the proposal without bashing any particular religion?

Absolutely. We should bash them all equally.

These “religious” holidays in Australia have, in my long experience, had religious significance for nought but a tiny proportion of the population.

They may have had a religious foundation but for most Australians they’ve been secular for yonks so it’s neither surprising nor improper that they’re celebrated by Australians of all religions and none – they’re just part of the Australian way of life.

Long may it continue.

#58
Holden Caulfield4:41 pm, 30 Apr 12

How come Saturdays and Sundays aren’t on your hit list JB?

Shouldn’t we have 52 days, plus the public holidays we can nominate?

Perhaps if your post Italian & Sons experience resulted in, erm, a home run, or something, you might have had a smile on your face today.

johnboy said :

…And because 63% self identify as christian with no particular christian practice (or heaven forfend understanding) you would knock back a proposal which would still let christians practice christian holidays but let everyone else have a fair crack too?

On behalf of all the Christians reading, I demand our “heaven” back, haha.

#59
eh_steve4:55 pm, 30 Apr 12

But what would happen with things around Christmas?

It works well to have periods where you could predict that everything will slow down because everyone is on holidays at the same time. Would many workers even relaly be able to effectively do their job over Christmas or during easter?

They’d probably be able to just go in to the office and bludge, and then skive off in periods of peak demand.

From an economic point of view, having everyone at the coast at the same time, to use that example, does have benefits.

Predictable peaks and troughs allows for business planning in construction, retail, administration, basically everything.

#60
grump5:11 pm, 30 Apr 12

come on you lot – can’t you see this is johnboy trying to make a late run for his own mully cup award?

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