Herstory made


Being just your average middle-class middle aged straight white male of right-wing persuasion I must be congenitally incapable of getting excited about various symbolic milestones being achieved in politics. That probably makes me classist, racist, sexist and homophobic – an all-around bigot. Or at the very least a killjoy.

Take Hillary. As of an hour ago she is the first female presidential nominee for a major party in the American history. But she’s also a corrupt opportunist, a possible felon, and a soulless political machine insider with a public service record singularly devoid of any positive or lasting achievement. I don’t dislike her, God forbid, because she is a woman; I dislike her because I think she will make a terrible president (whether more or less terrible than Donald Trump is a question I want to sidestep this morning in the interest of avoiding a violent headache and nausea).

Eight years ago, the Democrats have chosen the first African-American candidate for president. Great. How has that worked out? You won’t be shocked to discover I think he has been a disastrous president. But this has nothing to do with him being black and everything to do with his far-left upbringing, bad political instincts, and lack of substance. It was all Audacity of Hype and Nightmares From My Father.

Or take my home state of Queensland. For over a year now we’ve had the first premier of Polish extraction, Labor’s Annastacia Palaszczuk. According to trendy tribalism I should be rejoicing that a fellow Polack who made it big. According to untrendy individualism I think she is a forgettable politician who’s driving the Queensland economy down, and whose two great achievements I can think of are putting a curfew on nightclubs and party goers and employing 8,000 new public servants.

I’m old-fashioned enough to be with Dr Martin Luther King Jr. on this – though I don’t think the good Dr would make it in politics today – I prefer to judge people on the content of their character rather than the colour of their skin, or indeed the content of their underwear. You can call that white privilege. It’s a very unpopular attitude to have in our world where the left has decided to supplement the language of class war with dividing people into groups and categories and assigning moral worth and righteousness based on chromosomes and melatonin. I don’t mind unpopular.

Oh listen, I do get the argument that those who have been historically under- or not represented in positions of powers and influence benefit from having trailblazers and role models to look up to; that minority kids and little girls can now dream that they too can one day make it to the White House and everywhere else. It’s a beautiful dream and all power to you. But don’t aspire to be like Obama or Hillary, aspire to be better; don’t dream of being a woman president, or a Latino president, or a gay president, aspire to be a great president.