Again: wait, what?
Yes. There are people out there worried about increasing the population of a country (population 21.5 million, 6.15% arable land, .04% under cultivation) that’s roughly the size of the United States (310.2 million, 18.01% arable land, .21% under cultivation) and is a major agricultural exporter. Tim’s not one of them, so he’s his typical amusingly cruel self on the subject:
[Australian PM] Kevin Rudd – two sons, one daughter – is also alert to population panic. Two months ago he appointed Tony Burke – three daughters – as Australia’s first population minister, due to “legitimate concerns” over population growth. Rudd arrived at this decision via the usual Rudd method: a complete 180-degree flip. Last October, Rudd told The 7.30 Report he made “no apology for believing in a big Australia … I actually think it’s good news that our population is growing.”
We’ll take his subsequent appointment of a population minister as an apology. Still, you can understand the PM’s concerns about a bigger Australia. The fewer Australians there are, the fewer who can become crushingly disillusioned in him.
There’s some good quotes in Tim’s post.