John Frum …

On the 21st of December at 10.12pm Australian eastern daylight time the Mayan Calendar came to its conclusion and the world ended.

Well, it didn’t actually, I exagerated. A lot of people thought it would, though, but so far all predictions of the last of days have proven false. So don’t drink the Koolaid.

Not all vacuous predictions are so pessimistic. For all the glass half empty folk there’s got to be the odd glass half full person. In the opposite corner we have the cargo cults. Things have gone bad, they ain’t what they used to be, young people these days … but if we renounce the new evils John Frum will come in a very large aeroplane and deliver all manner of material wealth and we will all be rich, like we had our very own carbon tax or mining tax.

In 1941, followers of John Frum rid themselves of their money in a frenzy of spending, left the missionary churches, schools, villages and plantations, and moved further inland to participate in traditional feasts, dances and rituals. Wikipedia.

That was in the New Hebrides, now Vanuatu. It worked, of course …

… some 300,000 American troops were stationed in the New Hebrides during the Second World War, bringing with them large amounts of supplies, or “cargo”.

And I am sure it will work again, Wayne Swan’s new John Frum is a mining magnate, Wayne’s done the “frenzy of spending” bit, but I’m pretty sure that none of the missionary schools were given new school halls, the churches are under investigation, villages and plantations even factories have been abandoned, we have been urged to move back from the coast. The labor party have indulged in no end of “traditional feasts, dances and rituals” especially, but not exclusively in NSW …

After the war, and the departure of the Americans, followers of John Frum built symbolic landing strips to encourage American aeroplanes to once again land and bring them “cargo”.

We must do likewise to bring back the mining boom, share out the wealth, cast out the snakes and carbon pollution …

Pink batts, I am sure, would make excellent symbolic landing strips …

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