"Almost 50 per cent of people believe getting drunk occasionally is part of being Australian, a survey suggests.
The study of more than 1500 Australians, by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, found one in 10 reported having a problem with alcohol at some point in their lives. Three in five said they knew a friend or family member who had experienced an alcohol problem.
Germany, on the other hand - with its own myriad of problems, to be sure - recently hosted the annual Frankfurt book fair, the largest in the world:
"The other pleasant discovery was the real seriousness with which the German media treat the fair. Almost every radio network in the country (they are state-based there) had a huge outside-broadcast van parked near one of the five huge exhibition halls; television interviews with authors, critics and publishers seemed to run non-stop; the newspapers treat it thoroughly."
Hard to imagine in Australia. After all, why celebrate an "elite" artform, when you can grab a beer or ten?
Australia's cultural immaturity lives on.