Reasons for Australian federation Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 2 August 2016

Reasons for Australian federation

What is federation?Federation is a form of government in which powers and functions are divided between a central government and a number of political subdivisions that have a significant degree of political autonomy. It was the unification of Australian colonies which formed the commonwealth of Australia on 1st January 1901.

ForBy the 1890’s nearly 75% of the population had been born in Australia. This created growing Australian nationalism.

By the 1880’s the telegraph linked all capital cities and the telephone linked Melbourne and Sydney. Railway lines, although different gauges, made transport quicker. This resulted in better communication between the cities.

It made sense to have one Australian Navy, under a Federal Government, than each colony having its own way.

Each colony had its policy for immigration and this often caused problems. There were fears that non white labour, which was paid less, would take the job of Australians and reduce wages.

It was believed that the federal system might be better at coordinating commercial development.

Against Australia is a big country. There are great distances between the cities, so the people felt that they should be independent from each other.

The attitude of NSW was also a factor against the Federation, because NSW didn’t give any push to the forming of the federation.

About 90% of people involved in the federation were of British origin and saw themselves as British and didn’t care for the federation.

Smaller colonies feared that they would lose out to the bigger states.

Each of the colonies feared that the Federal Government would take power from them if they joined together.

Many unionists felt that they had a greater chance of making gains for workers in their own colony, rather than in a Federal system.

Queensland employed Pacific Islanders in preference to white workers because they were paid less, this would end if a federal government was formed. Farmers feared the end of cheap labor.

The depression and social conditions were more urgent than Federation.


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