Welcome to Down Under! - 14 December, 2002

Our reader sent us a very interesting email with his overview of emigration to this continent

PRAVDA.Ru receives a lot of emails from the people, who found themselves abroad as the fate willed. Someone has been living as an emigrant for a very long period of time, others just get started. Emigrants’ emails are devoted to a wide range of various subjects. Most often, they set out their certain suggestions or wishes for the future development of our website. Sometimes people write their impressions of this or that article that they have read, or their opinions regarding the current policy of the Russian government.

Unfortunately, the emails, in which a person would share his or her impressions, emotions and feelings about living far from the Fatherland, are rather rare. Probably, this is our fault, to a certain extent. This is the sad reality of our times: Russia often forgets its country-fellows. Russian people have a feeling that they have been left to the mercy of fate in a foreign country. They feel as if they live in the clutches of an alien ideology, culture, traditions, customs and regulations. This might make a person become psychologically isolated and unsociable. Someone can survive that, preserving the inner ego and the national originality. Someone is destined to get lost in a foreign environment.

We have recently received an email from our reader, who currently lives in Australia. In the email the reader presented his pieces of advice to those people, who were going to leave Russia. He also shared his thoughts of what it was like for a Russian national to live in the foreign world. We decided to publish this email on our site. We would like to say here that we are always happy to receive emails from our friends all over the world. Please, write to us: [email protected]

“Those,  who wish to go to Australia, those, who are attracted to extreme emigration, should know that you will have to live in the city of Adelaide. If you write in a questionnaire that you are given in the Australian embassy in Moscow  that you would like to travel to Sydney or Melbourne, your  request will be most likely denied. Also, you might be provided with the information that those people, who wish to go to Adelaide, get more scores, when their questionnaires are considered in an embassy. This is a particularly pragmatic approach: to fill up the losses of the population due to the fact that people (presumably  the youth) leave Adelaide. You go there, they go from there!

Speaking about Australia on the whole and about Adelaide in particular. The Australian ideology is based on functionalism. The textbook entitled “The New Sociology For Australians” was written by Australian women, it was published and edited in the country several times. The book is completely devoted to Australia only. The point of this ideology is the comparison that is drawn between the organization of a human society and a human body. For example, something should think, not work, something should work, not think, something should be responsible for all that and so on. Any changes in the social and economic structure of the Australian society are considered to be changes in a functioning human body: undesirable disorders or illnesses.

The efficiency of this ideology can be seen from the following fact. Australia’s foreign debt is more than Russia’s. It should be also mentioned here that Australia has the 19 million strong population, vs. 140 million strong population of Russia. Russia’s foreign debt decreases, whereas Australia’s debt grows.

“Australian statistic reports do not mention the information about the number of Australian people, who live below the poverty line. Probably, this is a state secret. So, before leaving for Australia, please think, if you are ready to accept this ideology.

“Australia politically depends on the United States.  This can be understood, since the base of the Australian nation, the elite of the nation, to be more precise, is the Anglo-Saxon race. That is why, it is easier for Australia to get all kinds of support from America. On the other hand, Australia does not follow the States in every field of its politics. The relations between Russia and the USA are getting better. Yet, it deems that Australia is still at war (cold war) with Russia. Like I was told to: “You, Russians, are the people of the second-rate here, you just have to deal with it.” Do you want to be a second-rate person? Welcome to Australia.

“Economically Australia depends on the countries of the Asia-Pacific Rim, on China, first and foremost. The goods that you can get in Australian shops – clothes, household stuff – are basically made in China. Australian businessmen prefer to move their production from Australia to Asian-Pacific countries. Taxes are lower there, the labor is cheaper as well as the electric power. Speaking of employment. It is easier for a woman to get a job here than for a man. When I attended English classes in one of Adelaide schools, one of our teachers, an Australian woman, said to the female part of our group: “You need to know that your employers might offer you to have sex with them, if you want to get a job.” So, if you want to destroy your families, welcome to Adelaide! Like I said, you will have to live in this city. By the way, au Australian radio station has recently called Adelaide “the criminal  capital of the world,” implying the number of murders there. Australian mass media  - five television channels, three newspapers, and some more radio stations – objected against that information. They published the information about the number of murders in other major cities of the world, including Moscow and Washington. As Australian media believes, the number of murders is a lot higher there. As a matter of fact, one should compare Adelaide’s criminal level with Russia’s or America’s cities of the same population – about one million people. The compared cities are also supposed to have similar social and professional structures.

“Global practice uses another method to determine the criminal level in a city. Australia basically calculates the number of crimes per ten thousand or a hundred thousand people. The point of another method is totally different. Criminality has its “product” – victims. The more of this product, the higher the criminal level. Here is an example.  Four criminals kill one person even year in a village. One criminal kills ten people every year in another village. Which village is it more dangerous to live in? The results of the research that was based on the new method showed that the criminal level in Australia, Belgium and Switzerland is higher than the one in the USA.  This information is documented in: Claire Sterling, Crime Without Frontiers, 1994, Great Britain: Little, Brown and Company, page 24. There is no information about Russia.

“The research that was conducted at University of Leiden in the Netherlands proved that the criminal level in Australia  is higher in comparison with the one in the USA and in England. Those, who are interested in this information, can make inquiries at the university. The website of the University is http://www.leidenuniv.nl. Here in Australia,  you might be suggested to search for rich people in Russia for the purpose of blackmailing them in the future. I would advise you not to do this. By the way, such suggestions do not originate from the so-called new Russians. They do not need that. I do not want to blame anyone, so I would like to put forth my own supposition on the subject.

“The so-called Russian Community Center in Adelaide was growing during the Cold War period.  This war ended up long ago, but it seems that they do not know it in Adelaide. They keep thinking the same things about Russia: it is a completely different country, it has wrong people, wrong this, wrong that, and there is nothing to like Russia for. This is what I think. Speaking of extortion. Various Australian states have certain differences in their laws. For example, your property  and your money can be frozen on the suspicion of your drug dealing activities in the state of Victoria. Yet, in the state of South Australia (Adelaide is its capital) your property and money can be frozen if you are suspected of any kind of criminal activity. I have to say that this law is not used here often. Yet, it is a good thing to know, especially for the Russian “second-rate” people.

“Those Russian girls, who wish to go to Australia and marry an Australian man, should know the following. Australian men go for Asian type of women now. They prefer slim girls. If you suit this type, then you should know that a woman, who has lived two years in a house of only one man, will have a right to get 50% of his dwelling (house). This rule works, even if a man is not married to a woman. Australian men are aware of that. That is why, they  try to get rid of their girlfriend before those two years pass by. After that, they have another girlfriend. If you get pregnant, it does not mean that you will have more shots to stay in his house.

“If my brief information intensifies your wish to come and live and in Australia – welcome! If you want, you can ask questions with this email: [email protected]. If this letter gets published, I think that there will be a negative reaction from some emigrants that live in Adelaide. In this connection, I would like to write a couple of sentences for them: “I can perfectly understand you. I also understand some people’s fear to lose a job in Adelaide, as well as someone else’s fear not to find it there.”

Yevgeny Seleznyov
South Australia

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

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Author`s name Olga Savka