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A schoolmate of Richie Benaud - one of our readers recalls the day the tide turned against Australia

Reader Emu remembers.....

I was fortunate enough to attend the same school as Richie Benaud and his younger brother John, and though both were some years ahead of me, they were held up as the standard of sportsmanship and integrity to which all students should aspire.

It was also the era of Betty Cuthbert and Marlene Matthews (whose younger sister also attended our school), respected as women of courage and strength.

Does anyone remember the day a champion runner by the name of John Landy stopped in a 1956 race to help up a fallen Ron Clarke who'd been tripped, thereby forfeiting his own chance at a record time. Nevertheless Landy went on to win the race by 5 seconds, albeit disqualified for stepping off the track in helping Clarke.

There were many heroes of integrity in many walks of life in those days, when a man's word was his bond and a handshake was all it took to seal a deal.

When did we, as a nation, lose sight of those lofty aspirations?

It can be pinpointed to Saturday 2nd December 1972 that the tide turned and became a tsunami of corruption.

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On that night I was in a restaurant with other excited young colleagues as our boss hosted a business dinner for visiting overseas clients. While we young hotshots raised a glass or three as news of Whitlam's success flashed around the room, our boss remained sombre and drank to an unknown future.

He'd fled the Communists of Europe in the 1950s, had seen it all, and was one of the smartest men I've known. That night his swarthy face was wreathed in sadness. I didn't understand why.

Now I do. With Whitlam and his shady deals with crooked Pakistani arms dealers came hideous Lionel Murphy, the ghastly murdering multiculti Al Grasby, and that entire cabal of crooked Commie bastards (including Malcolm Fraser) who set us on the road to ruin and shredded our social fabric.

Is Bernard Gaynor our Donald Trump who could make this country great again? Perhaps, but I don't expect to see it in my lifetime. I'm grateful to have seen the best of this country and enjoyed freedoms my own children are unlikely to ever know.

In a modern school Humanities curriculum there simply isn't room for Strength, Integrity and Courage.