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Thursday, 19 October 1911

Senator WALKER (New South Wales) . - As a colleague of Senator McDougall, I desire to congratulate him on having at length discovered that the Senate is of some use after all. For many years I have had to bear a certain amount of obloquy in New South Wales, and elsewhere, because I have always been in favour of the establishment of what has been called the Bush Capital. I was in favour of it because I considered that its establishment would do something to distribute the population of this country. At present, the capital cities of Australia, as regards population, are altogether too closely concentrated. I think thatmuch more happiness is to be found in cities of moderate size than in very large ones, where slums are apt to be created. I hope to see the Capital become both a political and an industrial city. One great advantage from the location of the Seat of Government there, will also be that we shall not be under the domination of any one newspaper in any large city. I hope to see a newspaper established that will be quite above State jealousy.

Senator Rae - We may have a Stateowned newspaper.

Senator WALKER - We may. Idesire to make a slight correction with regard to a remark made earlier in the debate, with regard to the date of the Civil War in the United States of America. As a matter of fact, the war broke out eightyfour years after the establishment of the Federal Government. I am one of those who believe that in Australia we may confidently look forward to the time when there will be the most kindly feeling between the States and the Federal power. Therefore, I am convinced that the idea that such a civil war will ever break out in Australia is completely outside the realm even of imagination. I have no belief that we, as Australians, are going to be unbrotherly towards one mother. That is the reason why, for twenty years at least, I have been a strong supporter of Federation. We have no right to judge of what Federation is from its beginnings. We all remember the unfortunate jealousies that have prevailed in the past between Sydney and Melbourne. They have been greatly lessened within the last few years. T. am bound to say, in justice to Victoria, that I think the old New South Wales people were largely to blame for that jealous feeling.

Senator Gardiner - No.

Senator WALKER - lt is, unfortunately, a fact. I remember a very worthy man in New South Wales chiding me for supporting Federation. He said, " Had it not been for the separation of Victoria from New South Wales, we should have had Ballarat, .Bendigo, and the other big cities of Victoria under our control." T replied, " What did you do with the territory when. you had it under your control ?" I am particularly pleased that Senator Rae has moved the addition to the motion which is going to be accepted. If the two Houses of the Legislature pass a resolution of this kind, 1 am convinced that we shall soon see the Federal Capital in a fair way of being what it ought to be.

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