It’s not a hopeless cause



A very quick digest message today. I’m still on the road, currently writing to you from a ‘river somewhere’… specifically the Barka (Darling) near Wilcannia. 

It’s a stunningly beautiful place, with a stunningly serious problem. The drought has certainly play a part in drying up the Darling, but over-allocation of water to irrigators by successvie Labor and Liberal/National Governments, and the theft of that water by unscrupulous farmers and corporations (mostly corporations) through floodplain harvesting is without question the bigger problem.

How we fix it, I don’t know. But that reminds me… I was talking to a close Aboriginal friend a few days, who pointed out that the Barka is not dead, and indeed never dies. It will survive long after we’re all gone. It has a way of ‘coming back’. He’s not suggesting we shouldn’t fight for it – we should. He’s just suggesting that all is not lost, and never will be. Worth remembering, as the drought takes a firmer grip.

Rushing to pack up camp and get back on the road. Heading east, then north. Hope your travels are just as inspiring.

Subscribe if you’re able and haven’t already by clicking here. Chill and enjoy New Matilda if you can’t afford it.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the publisher and editor of New Matilda. He is the former founding managing editor of the National Indigenous Times and Tracker magazine. In more than three decades of journalism he's had his home and office raided by the Australian Federal Police; he's been arrested and briefly jailed in Israel; he's reported from a swag in Outback Australia on and off for years. Chris has worked across multiple mediums including print, radio and film. His proudest achievement is serving as an Associate producer on John Pilger's 2013 film Utopia. He's also won a few journalism awards along the way in both the US and Australia, including a Walkley Award, a Walkley High Commendation and two Human Rights Awards. Since late 2021, Chris has been battling various serious heart and lung conditions. He's begun the process of quietly planning a "gentle exit" after "tying up a few loose ends" in 2024 and 2025. So watch this space.