Like what you've read?

On Line Opinion is the only Australian site where you get all sides of the story. We don't
charge, but we need your support. Here�s how you can help.

  • Advertise

    We have a monthly audience of 70,000 and advertising packages from $200 a month.

  • Volunteer

    We always need commissioning editors and sub-editors.

  • Contribute

    Got something to say? Submit an essay.

 The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
On Line Opinion logo ON LINE OPINION - Australia's e-journal of social and political debate


On Line Opinion is a not-for-profit publication and relies on the generosity of its sponsors, editors and contributors. If you would like to help, contact us.


RSS 2.0

Has Australia made the “nice” list this year? Santa responds.

By Richard O'Neill - posted Thursday, 22 December 2011

Dear Australia,

Thank you for your letter. It's always nice to hear from you.

The weather at the North Pole is cold and Santa is getting chilly. I'm sure that the weather is warmer where you are, although (I hasten to add, given all those letters from the Abbott boy) not-statistically-warmer than usual.


I know you've tried to be good this year. You tell me so each year, sometimes adding an "oi oi oi" for good measure, which is quite endearing.

And Santa thinks that you are good. Indeed, at times you have been a model child – engaged, compassionate, courageous and willing to work for others.

This was an important part of your growing up, which you are still doing.

You've always been a good kid around the home – rarely giving Mum or Dad much to worry about. But as we grow up it is how we share with others that truly counts.

For a long time you have been a leader in this. You were keen to share, and very keen to have a good reputation with your classmates.

I think you knew that you were one of the younger kids in the class, and so earning the respect of the bigger kids meant a lot. You did your best to fit in, and if word of an embarrassing incident at home got out, you were mortified.


Lately something's shifted. You seem less keen to share, and you're quite happy to let it be known. I mean, telling those Indonesian and Malaysian girls that you have a problem with unwanted guests? This sort of thing makes you look a bit silly; and while it is not quite naughty, it is certainly not nice.

I don't quite know when this began.

It reminds me of that time when those kids from over the road were struggling in your pool, and you did nothing. Even when that Norwegian boy told you that the kids were sick, you still did nothing.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. All

Discuss in our Forums

See what other readers are saying about this article!

Click here to read & post comments.

2 posts so far.

Share this:
reddit this reddit thisbookmark with Del.icio.usdigg thisseed newsvineSeed NewsvineStumbleUpon StumbleUponsubmit to propellerkwoff it

About the Author

Richard O'Neill is a speechwriter. Find him at

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Article Tools
Comment 2 comments
Print Printable version
Subscribe Subscribe
Email Email a friend

About Us Search Discuss Feedback Legals Privacy