Saturday, August 04, 2007

Hit the road, (Union) Jack

Last week when I was driving into Sandgate, a suburb on Moreton Bay in Brisbane, I saw a huge billboard advertising Kevin Rudd and the local federal ALP team in the upcoming federal election. What caught my eye was at the bottom of the billboard was an Australian flag without a Union Jack next to the phrase 'the future'.

As someone who has been active in the ALP I thought I would've noticed this republican imagery as soon as it had happened. When I approached ALP State Office (Queensland) for a comment they acknowledged the logo is the new ALP logo and has been for at least the past six months. The snipy comment was that it was emblazoned for all to see at the Queensland ALP State Conference in June. They went further to state the new logo had nothing to do with changing the national flag, but rather is just the removal of the Union Jack from the Labor logo.

I'm intrigued though as to the thinking behind the change to the new ALP logo. Is the use of the Southern Cross with a Federation Star to one side simply a shallow nationalistic response or is there some deeper republicanism going on here? I think the answer is more the first than the second. Although the ALP platform calls for a republic the new logo does not appear to be a deliberate ploy to send a subliminal message to monarchists that their time is up once Kevin Rudd takes over the Lodge.

Although any hint of a republic under the southern cross would make the ghost of Henry Lawson sigh.

Three cheers for the coming republic!