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Turnbull, cuts and the culture of forgetting

Andrew Thackrah writes in ABC's The Drum (29.2.16) about Turnbull Government funding cuts to cultural and collections institutions, such as the National Library and National Archives. He argues that the government's 'concerted' push for fiscal efficiencies puts our collective national memory and heritage under threat.

'While championing the "ideas boom" and the value of entrepreneurship, the Turnbull Government's old-fashioned fiscal approach is threatening our history and cultural identity.

'Apparently, "there's never been a more exciting time to be Australian," or so states the Turnbull Government's online portal for the National Innovation & Science Agenda. In case the message wasn't clear enough, the portal goes on to proclaim: "Welcome to the most exciting time in Australia's history. Be part of it now!"

'It's impossible, of course, to scrutinise such rhetoric without a window into Australia's history. Yet, in stark contrast to this marketing spin, the Turnbull Government is making a concerted effort to close that window by attacking some of the most innovative tools that enable Australians to access their past, assess their present, and scrutinise their political leaders.'


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