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Gillard Lauds “Aussie Mateship” in Australia Day Speech

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has praised the spirit of “mateship” and “a fair go” in an Australia Day speech in Adelaide.

Julia GillardGillard spoke glowingly of the Australian spirit of informality and lack of deference, “the informality that rejects deference and snobbishness and makes it all right to just call out ‘Julia’.” She talked of mateship in the Changi prisoner-of-war camp and compared it to the courage shown this month in the flood crises around the nation.

Gillard paid tribute to “working Australians” and again spoke of “the dignity of work” in a society where success is defined “by your preparedness to work” and where “demography is not destiny”. [Read more…]

Mark Latham: A Big Country – Australia’s National Identity

This is the text of a speech delivered by the Leader of the Opposition, Mark Latham, to The Global Foundation, in Sydney.

Text of speech by Mark Latham to The Global Foundation.

LathamI have always believed in Australia as a big country – big in size, big in spirit, big in its egalitarian ways. These are the values that will guide a future Labor Government. Always reaching out to our fellow citizens. Always trying to build a more cohesive and just society. Always standing up for Australian independence and Australian sovereignty.

Already we have released a wad of policy aimed at achieving these social goals. Our Read Aloud program for early childhood development. Our Aim Higher policy for TAFE and university access. Our plan to save bulk billing and establish a national dental program. And to help parents balance their work and family commitments, Labor’s Baby Care Payment. [Read more…]