Ha! Descent from on high versus relating on the level.

With an eye to what is happening with the Muckaty Federal Court case over proposed radioactive waste facility – and an eye to the role of anthropological reports – in this piece of “written thinking” i try to tease out why the role of ‘descent’ in the statutory definition of ‘traditional Aboriginal owners’ (Land Rights NT Act) is so resistant to change.

Whose interests are served by this resistance to changes – changes which would bring Australian Commonwealth law into better alignment with First Peoples realities?

In the 21st century, now is time for us to seriously tackle the process of rethinking life – a rethinking which which is inherent in the encounter between European understanding and First Peoples Ways.

Time to replace the mis-managers with the those with proven life-management credentials – and that ain’t the return to yesteryear and the tired old men in the Abbott government.

This bit of writing is merely a bit of brain-food mixture for those of us who nibble at the edges of this healing challenge.

Real change comes from lived practice, but – ha! energy follows thought!

Google doc at:


Bruce Reyburn
Coledale NSW