Saturday 7 November 2009

The Squirrel and the Grasshopper


The squirrel works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building and improving his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool, and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the squirrel is warm and well fed. The shivering grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.


The squirrel works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool, and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the squirrel is warm and well fed. A social worker finds the shivering grasshopper, calls a press conference and demands to know why the squirrel should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others less fortunate, like the grasshopper, are cold and starving.

The ABC shows up to provide live coverage of the shivering grasshopper; with cuts to a video of the squirrel in his comfortable warm home with a table laden with food.

The Australian press informs people that they should be ashamed that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so while others have plenty.

The Labour Party, Greenpeace, Animal Rights and The Grasshopper Housing Commission of Australia demonstrate in front of the squirrel's house.

The ABC, interrupting a cultural festival special from St Kilda with breaking news, broadcasts a multi cultural choir singing 'We Shall Overcome'.

Bill Shorten rants in an interview with Laurie Oakes that the squirrel got rich off the backs of grasshoppers, and calls for an immediate tax hike on the squirrel to make him pay his 'fair share' and increases the charge for squirrels to enter Melbourne city centre.

In response to pressure from the media, the Government drafts the Economic Equity and Grasshopper Anti Discrimination Act, retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The squirrel's taxes are reassessed. He is taken to court and fined for failing to hire grasshoppers as builders. For the work he was doing on his home, and an additional fine for contempt when he told the court the grasshopper did not want to work.

The grasshopper is provided with a Housing Commission house, financial aid to furnish it and an account with a local taxi firm to ensure he can be socially mobile. The squirrel's food is seized and re-distributed to the more needy members of society - in this case the grasshopper.

Without enough money to buy more food, to pay the fine and his newly imposed retroactive taxes, the squirrel has to downsize and start building a new home.

The local authority takes over his old home and utilises it as a temporary home for asylum seeking cats who had hijacked a plane to get to Australia as they had to share their country of origin with mice. On arrival they tried to blow up the airport because of Australians' apparent love of dogs.

The cats had been arrested for the international offence of hijacking and attempted bombing but were immediately released because the police fed them pilchards instead of salmon whilst in custody. Initial moves to make then return to their own country were abandoned because it was feared they would face death by the mice. The cats devise and start a scam to obtain money from people's credit cards.

A 60 Minutes special shows the grasshopper finishing up the last of the squirrel's food, though spring is still months away, while the Housing Commission house he is in, crumbles around him because he hasn't bothered to maintain it. He is shown to be taking drugs.

Inadequate government funding is blamed for the grasshopper's drug 'illness'. The cats seek recompense in the Australian courts for their treatment since arrival in Australia.

The grasshopper gets arrested for stabbing an old dog during a burglary to get money for his drugs habit. He is imprisoned but released immediately because he has been in custody for a few weeks. He is placed in the care of the probation service to monitor and supervise him.

Within a few weeks he has killed a guinea pig in a botched robbery. A commission of enquiry, that will eventually cost $10 million and state the obvious, is set up. Additional money is put into funding a drug rehabilitation scheme for grasshoppers.

Legal aid for lawyers representing asylum seekers is increased. The asylum seeking cats are praised by the government for enriching Australia 's multicultural diversity and dogs are criticised by the government for failing to befriend the cats.

The grasshopper dies of a drug overdose. The usual sections of the press blame it on the obvious failure of government to address the root causes of despair arising from social inequity and his traumatic experience of prison.

They call for the resignation of a minister. The cats are paid $1 million each because their rights were infringed when the government failed to inform them there were mice in Australia.

The squirrel, the dogs and the victims of the hijacking, the bombing, the burglaries and robberies have to pay an additional percentage on their credit cards to cover losses, their taxes are increased to pay for law and order, and they are told that they will have to work beyond 65 because of a shortfall in government funds.


One of the good guys said...

Oh how true.....but there is more.

While all this is going on, government public servants of this country are mismanaging tax payers dollars to the tune of billions of dollars every year.

Time card fraud, abuse of sick leave entitlements, theft, inappropriate and unprofessional behaviour (including sexual misconduct, bullying and intimidation, drunk on the job, incompetence, abuse of government cars, such as leaving them at the Casino overnight, because they were too drunk to drive home, after they had driven the work car to a social function on Melbourne cup day on their day off), abuse of other government property such as mobile phones, inappropriate spending by managers on hot food take outs for staff, TVs, Lounges, expensive coffee machines, serving alcohol in school grounds during school hours, teachers physically assaulting students and interferring with quality assessment reviews by culling bad reviews etc.)

I have not got enough room here to list all the complaints, but it is a disgrace, and for many staff who still have to work under these conditions it is extremely demoralising and frustrating that these rip-offs and poor behaviours are occurring on a daily basis, and it is allowed to go on, shoved under the carpet or even sanctioned by senior managers in some cases. It is no wonder then that many of our government departments are totally dysfunctional and not doing the job they are supposed to be doing.

It is a fact of life that in 2009, that fear of whistleblowing and losing one's job or being forced to leave because of fear of lack of support in the case of whistleblowing shows just how deeply the root of the problem really is, despite the government's rhetoric.

nocturnal congress said...

Ahhhh so now we know why the American people (grasshoppers) are having their houses foreclosed, can't afford Health Insurance and have no pensions. It's because they DESERVE all this. Yeah, this banal piece of drivel would go down real well in the USA at the moment.

Thaddeus said...

Oh shit yeah...tis little homily proves beyond doubt, that is you get cancer an early age, you're a bludger and a stain on society, and deserve to die without any pain relief. Yeah, shit yeah. Dittgo if you get seriosuly injued in a car accident and hey what if youy have brown eyes and an olive complexion hey? I mean you can't be too different from blond hair and blue eyes!!! Jesus, I eman , the cats or dogs might take over thwe world!!!

nocturnal congress said...

The moral of this story is very clear. If you have risked your life in leaving Afghanistan because the Taliban have raped, shot and killed little girls whose parents dared, yes dared to send them to a school in someone's house, then Michael Moore says those girls are the devils's own spawn and evil beyond all reasoning and should not ever, not ever be given any consideration whatsoevedr from the West.
Those little girls are the devils own spawn and the grassghopers of Michael Moore and his friends are the brothers and sisters of Jeasuer Christ. So bow all you peasants. Bow to the coming of the family of Jesus Christ, which Michael Moore promotes.

Alison Alloway said...

Whoever wrote this is very sick, probably a sociopath, who has no understanding that the human being is very different from an animal.

Paul said...

I thought it was the led into a bugs life..

No it's ok mike, I'll write my own 'real' name .. but feel free to re-publish my address, email and photo ok?

for the rest of you - if you'd like to spout post feminist weirdness at someone, please head here:


Jude Johnston said...

Gosh and I thought it was just a variation on Aesops Fable, The Ant and the Grasshopper. As a child growing up I would read Aesops Fables and could comprehend the moral content and animal context, but I guess I wasn't exposed to Political correctness back then. In high school I graduated to Animal Farm and Lord of the Flies. In Sunday School I was preached about the wisdom of building a house on the sand. My kids grew up with Dr Seuss,and who can forget the moral of the "Star Bellied Sneetches".

Battler said...


Sorry to inform you but we are animals. Mammals just like the squirrel. And just like squirrels get pissed off when other squirrels take their nuts. People who pay taxes get a little concerned when people who don't pay taxes spend their lives complaining to the governing body to get the people who pay the taxes to pay them more.

In the human jungle the rule of "survival of the fittest" still apply.

Bobimagee said...

what are Squirrels?
Do we have them in Cairns
This crap seems far removed from here

steve said...

I've seen this piece before on the fishing forums. Generally there are some who like to complain that somehow their first world lifestyles are adversely affected by those daring to seek a better life. Generally, I feel those that sympathise with this angle want all the benefits and no social responsibility.

The U.S. model has shown where this ends up, and that's a great place where you do fall of the edge into poverty when you get sick, lose your job or believe the bank when they say you can afford the repayments, carry a gun to defend what you have against those on the street and are terrified the same fate could befall you.

The whingers of our age, people frightened of the those different and blockers of the way forward.

Bryan Law said...

Actually “Battler”, the particular squirrel in this story is a Gestapo war criminal who bought his way to Australia by providing intelligence to the USA about “communists in Berlin. When he first arrived in Australia he appreciated a society where the rule of law still held, and where enlightened self-interest meant that the weak, vulnerable, and even foolish were given social assistance for basic life needs so that peace and good order prevailed – and those who applied themselves, their intelligence, and their good efforts could really, really prosper – yet there was a place for everybody.

Over the past 30 years the foundation of the “social contract” as it was called has been systematically undermined by Weasels, who gained positions of influence inside corporations and government departments and started milking a percentage of all the money that passed through their hands. They became “addicted” to this unearned money. By using some of it to buy off various government members and operatives, they were able to increase the percentage they stole, and live trulty remarkable lifestyles until all the productive enterprises at the base crumbled into debt and ruin.

Many, many squirrels were cast into unemployment and homelessness, and the executives (or Giaisons) responsible for all the losses knew they had to put the squirrels off the scent of what really happened. Gestapo squirrel (for a consideration) told the Giaison about how anti-Semetism had worked real well for a short time.

So the story of the ant that could control bureaucracies was invented and distributed by a bunch of thieves. So far its working really well, and the weasels like Giaison are getting their paws on more taxpayers’ money than ever before.

Nikkiwi said...

Whoever "wrote" (and I use the term loosely) this version has taken it wholesale from a book called "Politically correct fairy tales", with only minor alterations to make it Australian centric (the original version in the book had US references - presumably as that was the market it was published for). In any case, the original version was a fairy tale parody and this version is plagiarism.

Alison Alloway said...

Battler, as a cancer survivor, I received most of my treatment at the taxpayers expense, despite paying into private health funds all my life. My late husband died from complications of a brain aneurysm after being flown to Townsville at taxpayers expense and receiving free emergency surgery from the best neurosurgeons in Queensland. My husband received excellent free medical care in the Intensive Care Ward. . If you yourself don't believe that both my husband and I deserved our treatment, then head off to America where "survival of the fittest" means that having cancer will probably bankrupt you. Either you believe in a society where people help each other along or you don't.

Colenso said...

Ok, now here's the (almost) correct version you ignoramuses. From memory then, from almost forty years back:

Le cigale ayant chante toute l'ete
Se trouva fort depourvue
Quand le bise fut venue.

Elle alla crier famine sur la formi sa voisine, le priant de lui preter, jusqu'a la saison nouvelle.

"Que faisiez vous dans temps chaude"?
dit elle a cette imprunteuse.
"Nuit et jour je chantiais, ne vous displaise!"
"Vous chantiez? Eh bien, danzez maintenant!"

JJ, the night watchman said...


here's the translation...

The grasshopper who sang all summer
Was greatly LACKING
When the wind was coming.

She went on hunger cry form its neighbor, asking him to lend,
until the new season.

"What were you in hot weather?
she said this imprunteuse.
"Night and day I sites, do displaise!"
"You sing? Well, danza now!"

Paul said...

Either you believe in a society where people help each other along or you don't.

Yeah, I believe in a society where we help each other along, but not one where one person helps ten along.