Zooming history: “I don’t hold a hose, mate”: Power and sentiment in the Australian Federation

I bet more Australians today know the names of the Premiers of the different states of Australia than at any other time in our history. COVID has brought Federation into clear view- even if its in terms of failure of unity and co-operation. Western Australia’s Mark McGowan might be seen as the “State Daddy”, but Western Australia has always had an uneasy relationship with the Eastern states. In this lecture, Carolyn Holbrook goes through the history of calls for WA succession, co-operation (or the lack thereof) during the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1919, and Menzies’ seizing of the 50th anniversary of Federation for a good bout of nation building with “Jubilee Week”. She comes to the conclusion that Federalism is a pretty good way of deciding who should hold the hose, and that squabbles aside, it’s functioning as it was designed. And really- who could go past a title like this?

One response to “Zooming history: “I don’t hold a hose, mate”: Power and sentiment in the Australian Federation

  1. We do know the names of state Premiers better. I can almost spell QLD Premier’s name. I am not keen on McGowan, though he is on my side of political fence. Well may WA complain about the eastern states. AFAIK it took three days before extreme harassment of McGowan and his family over COVID restrictions etc to be reported here, and I doubt many here saw the story. WA really does get ignored, at best.

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