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Irish Eyes: News From A Hot Country

An occassional column from Dublin Scoop Greg Meylan - email

Irish Eyes has learnt, through being especially vigilant in examining places capitalism has yet to reach, that if Australians vote to become a republic in their upcoming referendum on the matter the government will move to secure a $US12 billion two-year sponsorship deal with an as yet unnamed corporate logo. Which might just prove that too much sunshine around the barbecue wearing sandals, thongs, flip flops (call them what you will) has a profoundly unsettling effect on tradition.

Under the agreement, the corporate logo would replace the Union Jack which currently fills up space in the upper left hand corner of the Australian flag, while the country's name would change to ____ -Australia (read Adidas, Nike, Wrigley, Tayto Crisps etc. in the blank).

The change would be put in place in time for the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

Irish Eyes understands that astute politicians representing outback electorates suggested that the rejection of Queen Elizabeth II and her peculiar children (and their children and their children) gave the country a unique opportunity to lease space on the old flag while schoolchildren submitted their designs for a new one.

One Australian spoken to by IE said that with the advent of the internet, CNN, 24 hour shopping and a fixation with soccer teams, the world had become a truly global village, so what we need now for the old ideas of nationhood?

"Everyone knows nationalism leads to war, bigotry and corny tea towels. Do you dolphins have countries?" he said, "Besides, it is a lot of money and we might get cheap shoes or tracksuit pants."

The idea has, however, upset some Australians who say rejecting the monarchy is one thing but replacing it with a corporate logo is quite another.

"Since when did people sell their souls to an abstract idea just for money?" one holiday-maker in Dublin said when told of the proposed plan. "Everyday when they go to work," said her friend.

The corporate logo is expected to be named early in the new millennium and if it is a success proponents of the plan have not ruled out continuing with the scheme with a tender put out for a new corporate logo every two years. On the topic IE has a few other ideas for country's wishing to make a bit of easy revenue in the new world of the 21st century.

Look to see Iceland become Choc-Iceland, the US changed to the United Food States of America (perhaps a bit obscure) and the Seychelles to the SeyShellOil Islands.

Just a thought.

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