Aid celebrity Bob Geldof caused a stir on a visit to Australia this week:
SIR Bob Geldof says Australia is economically stupid for importing labour while Aboriginal talent goes to waste.
Speaking at a breakfast for West Australian mining entrepreneur Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest’s nation-touring GenerationOne movement, which aims to halt indigenous disparity within this generation, Geldof likened indigenous affairs in Australia to situations he’d witnessed in third-world Africa.
Sir Bob Geldof slams Australia's ‘absurd’ treatment of Aborigines
Greg Tingle at Australian Sports Entertainment seemed tickled by Geldof's irreverence to the big end of town:
Geldof urged the “rich bastards” (Mr Packer et al) in attendance at the breaky to contribute wholeheartedly and dig deep re Mr Forrest’s fight to end indigenous disparity. It's a shame ‘Our Richard’ (Branson), Steve Wynn (still winning big), and billionaire ‘Google Guys’ weren't in attendance.
Australian Aboriginals And Casinos Generate Bob Geldof Heat
CairnsBlog voiced the concerns of a local historian:
Dr Timothy Bottoms says, that a foreigner like Sir Bob Geldof has the nerve to identify that ‘Australia has exiled indigenous Australians from the nation’ is not an effrontery, but an insight that we should have recognised ages ago.
“He’s absolutely bloody right!” Dr Bottoms says. “What he does not go into is one of the pivotal reasons for this.”
BOB GELDOLF: Australia's treatment of Aborigines is ‘economically stupid and absurd’
Dr. Bottoms’ explanation of those reasons is quoted in detail in the post.
There were a number of bloggers, including A Western Heart, who attacked Geldof's own wealth and his alleged hypocrisy:
Such hatred of success and wealth bob, maybe you should have the bong back, contrary to what an angry fascist like yourself might think, those who are wealthy have no obligation to part with their money, if they want to they can, if they don't want to then you can't make them. Feel free to give all your money to them though, I'm sure you're not a “rich bastard”, are you bob.
Go home bob
His motives had been canvassed in Bigpond LiveNews:
There are reports that Mr Geldof has been doing the rounds of business conferences and charity events in Australia this month, reportedly receiving very large payments for some of his speaking engagements.
Sir Bob Geldof at Melbourne Fundraiser
Geldof also echoed calls by Oxfam Australia for Australia to increase its overseas aid:
Bob Geldof still thinks Australia is one of the meanest countries on Earth when it comes to its foreign aid program.
The outspoken singer gave an emphatic response when asked if Australia was shouldering its weight of the world's international aid.
Australia's foreign aid ‘pathetic': Bob Geldof
Love him or hate him, Bob just won't go away.