New States and the Australian Constitution

I recently put up a proposal for an 8th state in Australia on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria (8th as there were at least 2 other contenders for the 7th state - the NT and North Queensland).

The need for new states

The 8th state proposal was intended as a thought exercise on alternative ways of living, in contrast to the destructive, consumerist, environmentally damaging way we are living now. However, I was surprised at the number of people who were very supportive of the concept, and some who clearly hoped it might become a reality.

This got me to thinking about what could be done to create a new state in Australia.  It soon became obvious that any new state was unlikely to come into existence under our current constitution, which requires first the approval of state parliaments to change existing state boundaries, and then the approval of federal parliament. 

Image courtesy of smh.com.au

Thus for any reformation of our current states, a new constitution is needed.  And in fact there are other good arguments for constitutional reform, and some are given in the article "We need a People's Constitution and We Need it Now" originally published by the Australian Independent Media Network.

The need for constitutional reform

It turns out that there already some groups who have been working on a new constitution for Australia.  I am now proposing that we look at constitutional change as a serious proposition.  It is unlikely that any official effort will be made in this direction, but a people's movement could start this process by collecting together the current proposals under an umbrella site, and perhaps also allowing new ones to be posted. Thus all proposals could be collected together in one place to be compared and commented on. And who knows, in the very tumultuous times we are facing right now, and even more so in the near future, popular support for a new constitution may grow, in which case, we may well have something ready for referendum if the opportunity arises.  

Of course, part of this discussion would include what system of states we would have, and again there are several existing ideas around this, including the FOWTOR model.

READ MORE: We need a People's Constitution and We Need it Now

READ MORE: 8th state in Australia

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