Sent in from an SOT member:

There’s a story of a conversation Bill Clinton had with Edward de Bono a couple of years ago, when they were both in Hong Kong.

Bill asked Edward his opinion of what, in an ideal world, ‘the perfect nation’ would look like.

De Bono is said to have replied:

It would have an ethnically diverse population of twenty to twenty-five million people. English would be the national language. It would be religiously and economically liberated, have a democratic form of government and a vigorous free press. I’d locate it somewhere along the Pacific Rim. It would have a young history and an optimistic outlook. And a generous climate that lent itself to encouraging all its people – rich or poor – to enjoy the wonderful free gifts nature has to offer.

‘Sounds wonderful,’ Clinton wistfully remarked. ‘What would you call it?’ he asked.

‘Oh, I wouldn’t change its name,’ de Bono replied. ‘”Australia” will do fine.’

But what is “Australia”? … 

20 thoughts on “Bill Clinton and Edward de Bono

  1. – Tons of interesdting stuff!!!

  2. Australia score good to ok for the range of criterias implied – it is better than most countries. NZ is also up there and Canada. There are also many other countries that are on the whole good but does not match our PTV. At the end of the day it is what we make of the situation – keep in mind that that there are opportunities hidden in crises and chaos. Australia has a manageable level of crises and chaoes for most people and the safe-harbour for those who find it difficult to cope.

  3. I think the perfect nation is the Armenian nation. Do you know those guys? They live worldwide: they are more abroad than in Armenia. They work hard, but do not cooperate for multiplying achievements and defending their riches. They love themselves, but love others much more. They develop cities while citizens cannot stand them. They are people of law mainly in other countries, but not at home. They exist for thousands of centuries in spite of enemies.

  4. We need to distinguish between the macro and micro. From an external view Australia looks good. But, when we look internally there are many flaws with the potential to seriously impair our future. Increasing centralism, growing corruption, managerial incompetence on a vast scale, huge infrastructure problems remaining unaddressed, growing wealth imbalance, shocking balance of trade, mindless emphasis on population growth, severe climate problems, the list goes on.

    Certainly, relative to many other countries, we are well situated. But, enormous probems exist and they are not being adequately addressed.

    Greater application and less jingoism should be our catch cry.


  5. I know many Australians, like Dr. Walter Stark, one of the foremost oceanographers in the world, whom I profoundly admire.

    Although no Country is perfect, Australia and its people are a wonderful example of what can be achieved when peace and wisdom prevail above other considerations.

    Great Country. Great people. Great natural life.

    All this greatness carries a great responsability: to be an example to the rest of the world.

    Keep up the good work!

  6. De Bono should shut up so that we can keep the country a secret. Tell the yanks about the spiders and snakes. That usually keeps them away.

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