Sunday, May 28, 2017

Greens candidate to attend citizenship ceremony in Noosa

Posted by Jim on January 25, 2012

The Greens candidate for Noosa, Dr Jim McDonald, said he will be attending the Australia Day ceremony at the Recreational Hall at Wallace Park.

He said, “I think it is important that a candidate aspiring to represent Noosa should be present at the formal induction of new citizens into the community.

“Citizenship ceremonies are one of the most moving secular ceremonies in our nation. I have always admired the bravery of migrants who choose to set up a new life in Australia and to formally identify themselves with our nation by taking on citizenship.

“My own migrant origins in Australia stretch back 180 years, so there hasn’t been a tradition in my family of people formally taking on citizenship. But the challenges facing today’s migrants and my forebears who were free settlers are similar in many respects.

“Some of our new citizens will have fled tyranny and persecution and we welcome them into our community and wish them a safe and prosperous future in our country.

“On behalf of the Noosa Greens, I welcome all our new fellow Australians.”

Jim McDonald
Greens Candidate Noosa

Media Release, 25 January 2012

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Population figures by themselves are irrelevant

Posted by Jim on April 13, 2010

Gross population figures by themselves are irrelevant.  Whatever number Australia reaches by 2050 or 3000, the present growth trend will take Australia beyond the projected 35 million in Treasury’s forecasts.

The discussion about how big Australia’s population has to be, first, can we sustain the number?  That means: do we have enough water?  Do we degrade the environment by digging more coal pits and pumping more CO2 into the atmosphere?  What efficient  infrastructure do we need to reduce our reliance on oil to provide rapid and convenient transportation?    What directions should education planning take to provide a skilled workforce that is not reliant on immigration?  What technological developments that do not degrade air quality or add to toxic waste production can assist the necessary growth in productivity.  To what extent can government encourage the necessary research?  How do we go about protecting and utilising the most productive land for food cropping when so much has been alienated by urban spread?  Should we expand the protection of forests and to what extent should we expand existing plantations?

The population question generates questions on a very wide range of policy issues and that is why Bob Brown’s call for a review is the most savvy response to the current discussion.  However, if the discussion continues on in the vein of Gerard Henderson’s commentary, it will be nothing more than a fatuous focus on political spin.  The future of the Australian population is not a one-dimensional question that political spin will resolve.  The nation’s future requires a whole-of-picture approach and neither Mr Rudd nor Mr Abbott have demonstrated the vision for the future, which our politicians owe us all.

Letter to the Editor, Sydney Morning Herald, 13 April 2010 [unpublished]

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