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A six day a week War Memorial?

By johnboy 21 October 2010 30

[First filed: Oct 20, 2010 @ 10:08]

Bellona and the war memorial

Liberal Senator Gary Humphries is in high dudgeon that War World the Australian War Memorial is so strapped for cash amongst its massive expansion programs that it briefly considered, and then discarded, the option of closing one day a week to save money for other things.

In Senate Estimates on Tuesday night, the War Memorial’s Director confirmed that consideration was given, although not ultimately actioned, to close the Memorial one day per week because of Labor’s funding cuts.

“I am appalled that Labor’s budgetary ineptitude is to be paid for by the Australian War Memorial”, Senator Gary Humphries said today.

“Labor’s track record on War Memorial funding is a disgrace, with revelations last year that the solemn ‘Last Post’ ceremony would have to be funded by a corporate sponsor following Labor’s funding cuts.

“As Australia prepares to commemorate the important centenary milestones of the Great War, including the landing at Gallipoli, surely now is not the time to cut funding.

Cue harrumphing from the sections of the public which buy Peter Fitzsimmons’ books.

In the short term it might be well played by the AWM; raising fears of service cuts to ensure further funding. But in the long term becoming enemies of Labor is a risky business.

As a country we really need to decide if an ever more elaborate memorial to ever smaller numbers of veterans is really where we want to go? Or perhaps we should spend a bit more time and energy looking to windward?

UPDATE: Another day another outrage against the community and dead diggers. Gary is sticking his head out of the trenches in support of Christmas carols at the War Memorial:

In Senate Estimates on Tuesday night, the War Memorial’s Director revealed that the annual Canberra tradition won’t take place this year due to budget cuts by the Government.

“This is a bridge too far. This government is so incompetent it’s prepared to ruin Christmas,” Senator Gary Humphries said today.

“Thousands of Canberrans look forward to the annual coming together of our community for carols at the War Memorial.

“This has been an event at the cultural heart of our community.

“While ‘Labor’s representatives in Canberra’ are busy sticking to the party line, their party is undermining our community culturally and physically.

I’m sure the soldiers of the British 1st Airborne Division wiped out at Arnhem would appreciate Gary appropriating their memory for a funding spat over Christmas Carols.

Christmas Carols at the War Memorial

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30 Responses to
A six day a week War Memorial?
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johnboy 8:29 am 22 Oct 10

Have you tried the carols at the lanyon homestead?

Thumper 8:27 am 22 Oct 10

claim budget blowout on the one hand, then complain about budget cuts on the other

Well, logically, if you have a budget blow out then you will have to make cuts to balance it, so your statement doesn’t really make a lot of sense.

Kath 4:23 am 22 Oct 10

The AWM carols are actually really lovely – unlike the main ones, they don’t come over as horrid commercialism, and they’ve been growing each year since I started going in 2006. No film crews and do-overs for the camera. (And I’m not into religion, just singing.) 🙂

Ian 10:20 pm 21 Oct 10

dtc said :

the Libs…claim budget blowout on the one hand, then complain about budget cuts on the other.

Yes, believe it or not they do want to have it both ways!

housebound 5:41 pm 21 Oct 10

I worked in retail. I can’t stand Christmas carols.

Anyway, what does 25 December have to do with Jesus, let alone the war memorial?

Mick Green 4:39 pm 21 Oct 10

The War Memorial always seemed an inappropriate venue for caroling anyway.

p1 3:32 pm 21 Oct 10

Holditz said :

Actually the phrase “bridge too far” means an act of overreaching, going too far and getting into trouble or failing. So yeah, Gary Humphreys would be using this phrase without reference to any World War II battle.

If he knew that the idiom originated with Operation Market Garden then he would know that he was, at least coincidentally, referencing World War 2.

Holden Caulfield said :

This what happens when you waste a chance to vote clowns like this out of office.

What happens? Departments come up with ideas and then they decide whether to progress them? *gosh*

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