The Constitution

November 1999 and the Shaping of Modern Australia

More than any other comparable democracy in the English-speaking world, Australia puts constitutional change in the hands of its citizens. Count us all as equal, make the case for and against, and then ask the tens of millions of us if we want change. It is a remarkably democratic approach and outlook. Nothing like that is true in the US, or in Canada, the country most similar to Australia in the world. In Canada constitutional change is something that politicians can impose on the people, just as they did back in 1982 when there was no referendum, indeed not even…

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