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When in prison Eugene's life slowly changed after he developed an interest in literature - particularly poetry - and Australian history. In the years that followed he undertook a series of studies and attained a number of tertiary qualifications. He also did time in Pentridge's H.Division where, with other inmates, he rebelled against the inhumane conditions there, resulting in the Jenkinson Enquiry, which looked into the injustices and cruelty prisoners endured, but in the end was little more than a government whitewash, despite a mountain of credible evidence:
The Jenkinson Enquiry Report,
against the weight of evidence
offered no justified retort,
but rewarded criminal turnkeys
for abusing prisoners for sport.
The blindfold lady justice wears
was torn that day from her eyes,
and her scales, shattered into shards
of institutional arrogance and lies.
Eugene's part in the Jenkinson Enquiry and in the H Division rebellion has been recorded in Ray Mooney's book The Ethics of Evil which is a primary sourced documented account.
After his release from prison in 1980, Eugene wrote for Nation Review and hosted a radio program on 3CR called From the Inside, both of which dealt with prison-related issues. Since then, he has continued to develop his skills as a writer, having completed five books of poetry, a book of essays, and an anthology of short stories, much of which has been published.
Soon after his release Eugene was married and re-established his relationship with his brother and sister. His sister Esther passed away in 2013 at the Werribee General Hospital after her own long struggle with cancer. Today Eugene lives a productive life as a poet, writer, and musician in the inner-Melbourne suburb of Northcote.
His literary interests, as his writing attests, now extend way beyond his early life experiences into the realms of mythology, politics, and philosophy.
Eugene Alexander Donnini was born on the 1st of August 1947, in the Western Australian town of Kalgoorlie, where his mother Emily Masie Donnini (Clarke) and father Eugenio Donnini rented and operated a small kiosk on the station. His father also worked in a gold mine. Weeks after Eugene was born in the Kalgoorlie General Hospital, his mother's father became gravely ill, causing the family to move back to Melbourne. After their arrival, Eugene's grandfather passed away and the family decided to settle in the Melbourne suburb of Collingwood.
Eventually, Eugene's mother gave birth to two more children (Esther and Rodney) and for the next few years, the family lived a normal happy life until tragedy struck in the mid-60s when his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and following a course of radiation therapy, contracted leukemia and soon after died, leaving Eugene's father to care for the three children. But fate again was to deal the family another terrible blow, when Eugenio was diagnosed with emphysema, and after struggling with the disease for some time, also died.
It was just prior to Eugenio's death that the family started to fall apart. Unable to cope with the death of his mother and his father's illness, Eugene ran away from home several times and fell in with bad company, which came to a sudden end after he was arrested and sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for armed bank robbery.
WHY I'M NOT A COMMUNIST
I eye with caution those
orthodoxies and “cutting edges”
that claim the game sewn-up,
with a how, a when, a where
and a why. Because distance
can obscure many-a-tyranny,
and for the reign of some
vested interest, establish
an illusion of the truth,
a closer look may prove a lie.
--- Eugene Alexander Donnini, A Closer Look /Outré!
During my time with the Nation Review when I wrote about prison issues, I considered myself a left-winger, but not a theoretical one. I just assumed being "Left" was synonymous with individual liberty, freedom, and justice. I even joined The Australian Independence Movement which seemed like a good idea at the time, until I visited their bookshop and was confronted by the writings of Mao, Marx, Engels, Stalin, and Lenin. Out of curiosity, I studied several, along with the works of more contemporary totalitarian theorists, including Saul Alinsky, the Frankfurt School, Antonio Gramsci and the French Postmodernists, and I was not impressed.
I then investigated the claims made in their books and was astounded by their historical inaccuracies and lies. I realized that the "police state" mentality myself and others had rebelled against in prison was also present in these collectivist doctrines, on a mass scale, leaving no room for dissent; that the society they advocated would be, in reality, like one big H Division.
I recognized this mostly convoluted, ideologically obsessed writing for what it was: propaganda and blueprints for the creation of a closed socioeconomic system. I discovered (by examining many of the failed Marxist regimes) that under such systems, social institutions and organizations are discouraged and suppressed until the social fabric is so weakened that people become more amenable to absorption into a unified movement, where participation in government-approved organizations is at first encouraged, then enforced, where previous social ties are supplanted by artificial ties to the state apparatus and its ideology, in the service of which all dissident thinking, including free speech and political opposition, are selectively censored then deemed illegal, and finally, banned. I could not in all good conscience support a political ideology that absolves individuals of responsibility for their actions out of a sense of self-righteousness, by focusing on "the group" and finding scapegoats.
For Nazi totalitarians it was the Jews, for Classical Marxist totalitarians it's the "bourgeoisie" (the most productive class) and for today's progressive left-wing racists it's people who happen to be born with pale skin. The reality, of course, is that groups are not intrinsically evil: there are good Jews and bad Jews, good bourgeoisie and bad bourgeoisie, good white people and bad white people, and so on. All totalitarian systems advocate equality as a source of strength against anyone who dares to be different. The demonizing of groups in totalitarian ideologies (left-wing and right) has nothing to do with equality and justice but is used, as history has demonstrated, as mechanisms and leverages for the attainment and consolidation of absolute political power.
When I looked at the countries that implemented Marxist totalitarianism through a variety of interpretations that all failed, I knew something was wrong with the fundamental idea, which, in every case, begins with a strong emotive appeal for equality and justice that invariably morph into their opposites. I knew there had to be reasons for these recurring patterns of abuse and failure. It wasn't long before I found the answer because in every case they lacked a practical socioeconomic program to achieve their objectives, based on a pragmatic, empirical understanding of how wealth creation works in the real world, which can only be done in relation to a free market system, not a system of absolute government control over the means of production and distribution, and the restricted freedom of its citizens, where the distinctions between quality and quantity are suppressed, where the concept of "free" trade is an anathema. These collectivist economies were like snakes eating their own tails.
In practical terms, it was hard for me to imagine that the local milk-bar owner, the baker, the restaurateur, the hairdresser, the chemist, the haberdashery lady, were all according to Marxist logic, evil capitalist oppressors who had established their businesses by ripping off their workers, and whose wealth and property should be expropriated by the state for that very reason, in other words, stolen from them by force. I could see why totalitarians had been responsible for the biggest mass-murder body counts in human history.
I could see quite clearly how many in my own family would be considered part of “the bourgeois oppressor class” (Marx) for the crime of wanting to better their lives and the lives of their children, who, as members of the working class, had skimped and saved their hard-earned money for years in order to build a business and buy a home. Most had worked long hours, struggling to pay off loans, and were paying almost half their earnings in taxes to the government, and who are now, according to 2021 regressive left-wing fascist logic, part of the bourgeois class of capitalist oppressors!
There is something deeply irrational and romantically appealing about totalitarian ideologies, which convinces people to believe (in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary) that giving up their freedom and property to a government and corporations and destroying the free market would somehow solve the world's problems and create heaven on earth.
It seemed the more I studied the mainstream media and the works of today's cowardly literati, the more I discovered about mainstream government policy, (Left and Right) the more they appeared, through the implementation of their fundamental policies, to be building the foundations for a totalitarian society, despite their superficial policy differences.
For most of my life after leaving prison, I have stood up and fought for the underdog because I believed what I was doing was right and just. Nowhere in the Book of Life does it say that in order to stand against injustice you have to take on the baggage of a political ideology. I still feel as strong today as I did all those years ago in H Division, when, with a handful of brave men, I stood up to the barbarity and injustices of a corrupt prison system. At the time, ideology was meaningless. It is ironic, to say the least, that some of the bravest men who survived, not only H Division but Jika-Jika and the “marionization” (extreme maximum-security upgrades) of Barwon Prison have aligned themselves with the “Left,” as if the Left was somehow based on an ideology that has a historical antecedence for promoting truth, justice, free speech and genuine equality of opportunity, when in fact, the opposite is true. Does this mean, by implication, that I consider myself a right-winger? No! I detest both these “wings” which today, more than ever, belong to the same bird. The evidence for this is overwhelming. A person would have to be totally ignorant, have selfish personal motives, or be ideologically possessed to deny it.
The Left now controls almost all the institutions of the West, from business to education and politics, into which they have injected their ideological venom and are becoming more intolerant as each day passes, to the point where they now openly advocate for the censorship and oppression of all groups, individuals and ideas that are critical of or opposed to their own.
When I left the Left, I flirted with the Right, then left the Right, because what I discovered was a similar, just as irrational and enclosed ideological universe. To believe that in the age of quantum physics and instant communication the ideas of ethnonationalism and racial separatism bandied around today by the extreme Right and the Neo-fascist Left, as viable alternatives, makes about as much sense as believing you could travel to the moon on a magic carpet!
I then started to research the history of Western Civilization, the good and the bad, and discovered that the values of the West were, in terms of justice, human freedom, and equality, the best the world at any time in history had developed. This came as a revelation. I also realized that these liberating achievements had come at a price, that the West itself had taken (and continues to take) quite a few wrong turns before it found its direction again, which is part of a learning process associated with individuals and open systems of government. I also realized that corruption is part of the human condition, of what it means to be human. As Solzhenitsyn wrote:
If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart? (Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918–1956).
The question for me was what form of government lessens the impact of corruption, tackles it, and adjusts its own laws in order to do so, in other words, develops self-correcting mechanisms? It certainly wasn't Marxism, Nazism, Islamism or Fascism, that wherever they have seized power, demonstrate no equitable recourse to justice and have bequeathed nothing positive to human progress. The greatest recourse to justice and to human equality (not based on Utopian fairy-tales or post and metamodern gobbledegook) I found in the ethics and ideals of the European Enlightenment.
So, where does that leave me? Politically, I would describe myself as an Enlightened Civic Nationalist. By “Enlightened” I mean guided by the principle of primum, non nocere (do no harm), and the concept of a free market economy, rather than a corporate monopolistic system presided over by a totalitarian state apparatus, which is what most of the sham leaders of the West, under the puppet shows of their Left and Right wings are working very hard, in collusion with the EU, the WHO, and the UN, to impose on the free peoples of the West.