Letters grouped by: Papua New Guinea

FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. IMPERIAL CONFERENCE PROPOSALS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Feb. 25 1907; Apr. 20 1907. The Governor-General opened the Federal Parliament in state on Wednesday last, both Houses after listening to his Speech adjourning before the dinner hour. On Thursday evening early the Address in reply was carried in both on the voices. The first real sitting and the session closed together. On Friday his Excellency prorogued Parliament by proclamation. Not unnaturally our public gasped in bewilderment. Popular sentiment of a kind was satisfied because another record had been…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE NEW ZEALAND TARIFF. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Sep. 3 1906; Oct. 30 1906. Never did “a bolt from the blue” startle any one so much as the Prime Minister’s tariff preference to the Mother Country to our baffled Free Traders. Its campaign material, all to hand, collected with endless pains and at great cost, depended for its effect upon a continuance of the parliamentary regime of last year, when a great deal of most important legislation, passed in spite of them, happened to be general in its nature and without party colouring. That suits the Opposi­tion,…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. LABOUR AND THE MINISTRY. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. [Aug. 27 1906]; Oct. 25 1906. Australian politics exhibit rising temperatures; one general election is certain and another pro­bable this year, three more are due in the early part of next year. Out of our seven Legislatures only those of Western Australia and Tasmania, lately elected, appear to conform to the normal standard. All the rest are perturbed by the imminence of changes which affect the conduct of current affairs by anticipation. Commonwealth politics are at an extremely critical stage, party complications…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE BUDGET AND ITS CRITICS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT SYDNEY, Aug. 14 1906; Oct. 3 1906. The Australian Press, though nothing near as extravagant as that of the United States, has an insatiable appetite for sensations. Where these do not exist, they seize the slightest excuse for creating them so as to keep up excitement by artificial means until some better pretext for stimulating the jaded appetites of their readers happens to occur. Everything is sacrificed to this appetite. One has only to turn these pages a few weeks after publication to be struck by the painful…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. IMMIGRATION PROPOSALS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Apr. 30 1906; Jun. 26 1906. The last Premiers’ Conference has, as usual, settled nothing finally. It has no power to do more than arrive at certain understandings between the responsible heads of existing State Administrations, who may not survive or may not obtain the sanction of their Legislatures for the agreements arrived at. But nevertheless it has most distinctly helped forward a great many matters by educating public opinion, while the Murray River partition, though only involving three States and but…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. NEED FOR A HIGH COMMISSIONER. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Feb. 26 1906; Apr. 12 1906. State politics seem dull because there are no prospects of change visible at any point on the horizon. There is an absence of sensations and even of the promise of sensations that bodes well for Mr. Carruthers. Federal politics are dull, too, though there the possibilities both of changes and sensations are patent on every hand. The general situation is not clarifying. Ministers preserve a silence either of indifference or of caution. Mr. Deakin’s replies to Mr. Reid’s frequent…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. SESSION CONCLUDED. THE MEASURES PASSED. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Dec. 26 1905; Feb. 3 1906. The second and central session of the Federal parliament has just closed as if by sheer exhaus­tion, members separating in hurried flights day by day until there was not a quorum of the House and hardly more than a quorum of the Senate to attend Prorogation. The first session began as this closes, with Mr. Deakin in control, but so much has happened since March, 1904, when he laid the programme of a reconstructed Barton Cabinet before members fresh from their election,…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE PARLIAMENTARY SESSION. LEGISLATION ADOPTED. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Nov. 13 1905]; Dec. 27 1905. Interest centres or ought to centre in the Federal Session as it draws to its close. It would concentrate there if the approaching crisis were understood; but, assuming that the other States are no better informed than our own, there is probably little grasp of the situation anywhere. This is due in our case to the persistent translation of all Commonwealth events into the party politics of New South Wales, as seen through Sydney spectacles. One needs only to…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. PARLIAMENTARY RECESS. REVIEW OF WORK DONE. PREFERENTIAL TRADE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Dec. 20 1904; Feb. 13 1905. The Federal Session is over, after lasting so long that the only surprise exhibited is that it should have ever ceased. For a considerable time the House has seemed too weak and too divided even to agree to close its doors. In all its ten months’ strenuous existence it could not and did not agree to anything else worth mentioning. It is true that the prorogation speech read by his Excellency emitted a lyrical undertone of rapture, probably…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. REID–McLEAN COALITION. RIVAL PARTY TACTICS. THE FISCAL PROBLEM. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Nov. 22 1904; Jan. 5 1905. State politics have once more sunk into the back-ground for the moment, since nowhere have local Legislatures developed anything in the nature of a crisis. Without something of the kind to give a sporting interest to politics “the Man in the Street” skips the scanty report of the debates in his own Legislature and the ridiculously inadequate summaries of the proceedings in the representative bodies of the other States. If there are leading…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. SIR GEORGE TURNER’S BUDGET. FINANCIAL PROSPECTS. COMMONWEALTH INDEPENDENCE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 25 1904; Dec. 9 1904. Sir George Turner has now delivered himself for the fourth time of a sevenfold Budget built out of the transactions joint and several of the Commonwealth and its six States. His assiduity in ransacking the smallest recesses of their accounts in obedience to the proverbial admonition prescribing the care of the pence was patent once more. Indeed, the undisguised gusto of his pursuit of details rather distracted attention from the…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. DIVIDED AUTHORITY. THREE PARTIES AND THREE LEADERS. UNCERTAIN SITUATION. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Mar. 15 [Mar. 8] 1904; Apr. 25 1904. The opening of the Commonwealth Parliament disclosed one of the most curious political situations that even Australian States, in all their vagaries, have ever looked on. To uninstructed observation the whole spectacle was just as it should be, or at least as it always has been. The ex-President of the Senate and the ex-Speaker of the Representatives were quietly re-elected. Ministers sat on the Treasury benches, with well-…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. ARBITRATION IN TRADE DISPUTES. EFFICACY OF THE REFERENDUM. REDISTRIBUTION OF SEATS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jan. 26 1904; Mar. 5 1904. Our new Governor-General and Lady Northcote have been installed with due ceremony at Melbourne, where they will remain for some weeks prior to making a stay in Sydney. They have already enjoyed glimpses of Perth and Adelaide, where they landed unofficially on the way to the present seat of government. When they leave us Brisbane and Hobart will expect to be visited, so that probably twelve months will have passed before they…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. WESTERN PACIFIC ISLANDS. SOUTH AFRICAN LABOUR. ATTITUDE OF NEW ZEALAND. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jan. 19 1904; Feb. 25 1904. The departure of Lord Tennyson affords another landmark in the story of the Commonwealth. He leaves South Australia this week as Governor-General, and though he will touch our soil again a few days later at Perth, he will then be free from all ties of office. It was in Adelaide five years ago that he began his career as the Queen’s Representative for the colony of which it is the capital, and it is in the same charming city that he now…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. SEAT OF GOVERNMENT. RIVAL CLAIMS TO THE FEDERAL CITY. FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 27 1903; Dec. 5 1903. The Commonwealth Parliament has been prorogued: it will soon be dissolved, and its obituary notices are already appearing. Naturally the Press sketches receive their colour from the campaign necessities of the moment. What is shadow to the Ministerial critic is sunshine to his Opposition contemporary. They invariably paint different pictures, so different indeed that now and then they scarcely seem to relate to the same subject. Partisanship runs riot at…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. RIVAL POLITICAL PARTIES. COMPLICATED POLITICS. THE NAVAL SUBSIDY. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 2 1903]; Aug. 10 1903. The Federal Parliament has begun its second and final session. The first lasted eighteen months, the second cannot exceed six, because the Senate elections must be held under the Constitution before the close of this year. The cost of polling Australia being estimated at £30,000, the spirit of economy now ruling will not permit a second disbursement of such an amount in May next for the Representatives alone. The present House is therefore…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. MR. CHAMBERLAIN’S FISCAL SCHEME. VIEWS OF RIVAL PARTIES. QUESTION OF NAVAL DEFENCE. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [May 26 1903]; Aug. 5 1903. Mr. Chamberlain’s Birmingham resuscitation of his former policy of preferential tariffs within the Empire has at once awakened a chorus of echoes throughout Australasia. It had been neglected of late because of the assumption that the Secretary for the Colonies had tacitly abandoned his idea. The project is now being discussed, however, in every newspaper of standing among us in addition to serving as the text for comments by most…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. PREMIERS’ CONFERENCES. SEPARATE STATE INTERESTS. FEDERAL POLITICS. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Mar. 17 1903; May 8 1903. Among the events that are casting their shadows before them is a conference of State Premiers summoned by Sir John See to meet in Sydney. A full attendance is expected at what must become an annual assemblage for the discussion of subjects of common interest by those responsible for the conduct of public affairs in the different parts of the Commonwealth. Prior to Federation similar official gatherings took place intermittently, at which…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. CLOSE OF THE FIRST SESSION. FEDERAL ACHIEVEMENTS. PARTY POLITICAL TACTICS. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 15 1902; Nov. 19 1902. The opening chapter of the first volume of the story of the Australian Commonwealth has closed—the first session of its first Parliament has ended. Drawing a long breath of relief, and with some ejaculations of surprise at having at last reached the shore of recess, its wearied members are dispersing themselves over the continent. Their voyage, if not tempestuous, has been full of perils, much of it in uncharted seas, and most of…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. SIR G. TURNER’S BUDGET. STATE AND FEDERAL RIVALRY. THE CRY AGAINST THE UNION. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Sep. 30 1902; Nov. 8 1902. The Federal Budget for 1902–3 constituted another success for Sir George Turner for his painstaking zeal, indefatigable industry, scrupulous precision of statement, and soberness of judgment. If his mind were a calculating machine, his speech could not have been more dispassionate or less imaginative. Without a flash of humour or a flight of fancy, an unhackneyed metaphor, or a glint of enthusiasm, he plodded his way prosaically…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. IN THE GRIP OF THE DROUGHT. TROOPS RETURNING. EMPLOYMENT PROBLEM. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Aug. 5 1902; Sep. 16 1902. The monotony of references to the drought faithfully reflects the monotony of its persistence. Our winter rains are falling lightly and only on the highlands. The immense Australian steppes which stretch from the Gulf of Carpentaria to beyond the Murray and from the coast range on the east right across the continent are lying absolutely barren. In many parts of these there is no wish for showers at present. If they came they could not…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. AUSTRALASIAN EXPANSION. WESTERN PACIFIC PROBLEMS. NEW IMPERIAL CENTRE. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Mar. 11 1902; Apr. 17 1902. The Commonwealth has taken its first plunge into the troubled waters of the Pacific. British New Guinea has been formally transferred to its care, and constitutes its earliest dependency. Henceforward, pending Federal legislation, the Governor-General will take the place vacated by the Governor of Queensland, and will control it under the advice of his Ministers as if it were a Crown Colony in his charge, directly instructing his…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. AUSTRALIAN PERILS. DROUGHT, DEBT, AND PLAGUE. NEW POLITICAL PARTY. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Mar. 4 1902; Apr. 8 1902. Australia’s deadliest enemy is the drought. It is the want of a sufficient rainfall that renders its vast interior in parts a desert, and almost everywhere unfit for close settlement. Population is confined to the coast for no other reason than that the track of Antarctic storms follows its sweep eastwards from South Australia to Victoria, Tasmania, and the southern parts of New South Wales. Our own sea-fed uplands enjoy plentiful supplies…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. AUSTRALIA AND THE WAR. “ONE PEOPLE, ONE DESTINY.” SERIOUS FINANCIAL PROBLEMS. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Dec. 17 1901; Jan. 22 1902. South Africa has proved the touchstone of Empire. The war with the Transvaal first demonstrated the unity and unanimity of the British race in all its realms. Our Federal motto, “One People, one Destiny,” with the Tennysonian addition, “one Flag, one Fleet, one Throne,” became at once the Imperial motto. It was no holiday parade. The greater the demand made on the nation and the darker its fortunes the ampler was the response…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. TARIFF PROSPECTS. THE BLACK LABOUR SPECTRE. NEW GUINEA PROBLEMS. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Nov. 26 1901; Dec. 31 1901. The Commonwealth is progressing, though this is not very apparent. Its Parliament, on the contrary, is, in colonial phrase, “bogged”. The team attached to it is so evenly divided and pull in such exactly opposite directions that the State vehicle makes no advance. Here in Sydney we are so much overstocked and so uncertain as to the commercial future that business is almost at a standstill, and, in some degree at all events, the same…