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FEDERAL POLICY CRITICISED.
PRAISE FOR SOUTH AUSTRALIA.
Melbourne, November 13.
In the House of Représentatives to-<lay Mr. Poynton during the discussion of I the Estimates of the department of the I Minister of External Affairs', referred to
the development of the Northern Terri- tory. He said the only way «to develop the Territory was by railways. They were making a great mistake by trying to de- velop the country from the tropical end. The vast country of Central Australia was
j well 'suited for agricultural and btock pur-
poses, and the MacDonnell Ranges country I was excellent for horse-breeding. Cereala j could also be grown with advantage. The | rainfall was good, water supplies were I much superior' to those on the railway
route from South to Western Australia, and there were great auriferous areas and I good chances of developing- them if the | pieper machinery could be got to them. The quotion of development must be de- cided by any Government in power.'
Mr. K. W. Foster said he regretted that I the Government had noc come down to the
House with a policy for the Northern Ter ¡ ritory. The Australian people, but parti-
cularly ¿hose of South Australia, had been looking for a great development policy. The Commonwealth had had possession of the Northern Territory for over two years, and they had a right now to hear a com- prehensive statement of policy by 'the Go- vernment. .The Government, in their ap- pointments, appeared to be avoiding com- petent and experienced men. He con- demned development of the northern por- tion of the Territory. South Australia had baldly faced an enormous problem in the Northern Territory, and experience had taught them much. That experience was apparently being* put entirely aside by the present Government, who were relying on men who had absolutely no experience of the Territory. As regarded the Railway Commission, he would advise its enlarge- ment, so as to ga*ther information respect- ing the Territory's mining, pastoral, and other- resources. South Australia had a
large quantity of data available. He would recommend the appointment of such a man as Mr. H. Y. L. Brown, late Govern- ment Geologist of South Australia, to such a Commission. He advocated the adoption of piecework in the Territory.
Mr. Sampson objected to the system of government by ordinance.
Mr. Gordon said throughout the debate the Minister and some members had been asking, "What did Sout-h Australia do wJth the Territory?"
Mr. Mathews-Absolutely nothing.
Mr. Gordon said such an interjection showed that, the bon. member knew ab- solutely nothing about the question. South Aastraha, in a time of financial stress in the forties, cent Sturt to penetrate to Cen- tral Australia. Twenty years later Stuart, on' a third attempt, planted the flag on the shqres of the Indian Ocean. Then fol- lowed the telegraph line, for which Aus- tralia should be grateful to South Aus- tralia. The State proceeded to carry a railway through ¿he he-irt of the continent
and took it 700 mile»" north and 150 miles =outh, leaving a gao of 1,000 miles, which, under tire terms of the transfer contract, the Commonwealth was in honor bound to bridge. (Cneers.) South Australia also carried out important expérimenta at the Botanic Garden« at Darwin, and resisted strong pressure to open the door to col- ored labor. (Hear, hear.; When the time came South Australia was able to tranter a white territory to the Commonwealth. (Cheers.) He u«ged the ILnister to in- augurate a progressive policy, and be sug- gested that the name should be altered from the Northern Territory to Territoria. Centralia. or Kingsland. The solution of the problem of Territoria was transpor- tation. Radways and water crnservation were essential, and every effoit f-hould be made to keep the stock routes open. Afc
tention wa« being comientrated on Dar-1 >vin, and Central Australia was being over-
looked. He suggested that the Adminis- I traror and tíomp officials should take up their residence at Alice Springs during the wet eea&on in the tropics, when «hey
would not be fully occupied st Darwin. '. Central Australia wag not a desert, and ex*perience> in South Australia, where the W<§d debert w*a aractíoallv .*?»«"??£ «ff the
map, indicated that Centraba would one day carry its* share of population.
The time «limitation prevented Mr, Gor- don from further developing his argument in favor of railway extension,
Mr. Thomas complimented Mr. Gordon On his informing address, which was char» acterised by a broad national spirit. Mr. Gordon had lifted the debate out of party C"ücs. No orther member of the House
such a knowledge of the conditions in and the resources of Central Australia, Mr. Thomas defended the administration of the department with great fervor, and quoted immigration statistics .since tho
Latbor, Party»were in power to chow that > the Government waa a live one. During four years of the Liberal Party's rule, he said. 75,250 immigrants came to Australia, while in 2è years of Labor rule, 140,261 people arrived. ' (Laughter and dissent.)
Mr. Sampson-Do you take credit for
Mr. Thomas-Certainly (Loud laugh | ter.) He said he was willing to givcitha States credit for bringing assisted' immi- grants. - ,
Mr. Cook-Yon are too generous.
Mr.. Groom-The land tax did that. (Laughter.). --
The Minister-It helped. (Laughterj)
The Commonwealth advertised the re- sources of Australia.
Mr. Sampson-In the "Labor Call." (Laughter.)
Mr. Livingston said South Australia waa deserving of all credit for keeping the Northern Territory white. He urged the construction of the line from Oodna- datta to Pine Creek. He quoted a list of authorities who had reported on the Nor- thern Territory, and he advised the Go- vernment to consult thean. He suggested the compilation of all the information available and its publication in one book. Had the Territory .ibeen in America it would have been covered with railways and settled loDg.ago. He ridiculed, the idea of inspecting the Territory in a motor
The Minister 6aid he did not object to extending the- Oodnadatta line, but thought the .first' work should be done in the Territory itself and "before tbe end of the year be lioped to eee 'a quantity of land taken up in the Territory.
Mr. Wynne UTged an extension north- ward from the settled districts, as Canada had done successfully. It ,was a mistake to work southwards. j# " "
Mr. Archibald approved of Mr. Wynne's suggestion as judicious.and in accord with common-sense. He favored -tbe idea of having a "staff at Alice Springs under & Resident, instead of depending entirely up- on men stationed at Darwin. They were pledged to keep up a high standard of liv- ing, and could not employ cheap labor. Therefore they must utilise all the re- sources of science and tbe .latest machin- ery. They could not hope to make a by* boom in, tropical produce, but-if oppor- tunities . were given for Settlement from the south -their own young men would go northward, and a railway from the south was the first requirement.
Mr. Gordon urged members and th» public to have more faith in the Northern Territory, which was in no sense a desert. In much of the land to which th/? railway, should be extended northward from Ood- nadatta there was plenty of artesian water. The same pessimism existed years ago in North Amenia, and yet many rail- ways endeavored unsuccessfully to carry, the enormous produce of what was for- merly called a desert, and which was now peopled by. millions. Central Australia offered limitless opportunities for settle- ment and production. Both Victoria and! South Australia knew what low produc-
tion meant. For 27 years the South Au»., traban wheat average was in single figure«., bat now the position was changed, thus < showing that hope exiated in the most > desperate tärcaeiBtancea. They were brave, enough and rich enough to spend a few. millions in giving the pioneers proper | means of transportation. At present theo-j were the same in the MacDonnell Rang»!
as in the time of Moses.
Mr. Hedges «3aid he doubted -the »trnthij of the glowing description of the fertility-' of the country north of Oodnadatta given! I by Mr. Gordon. He suggested that th« railway line between Hergott Springs and j Oodnadatta be pulled up, and a line con-' strncted to the Queensland border with thal material, which would be sufficient. Thiat
would link np with the Queensland rail-1 ' ways, which again should be joined to Pin* Creek through CamooweaL j
On Wçdnesday afternoon, at tie Oereaation B5**LiuÍ Oia?Se*roai* ï«j£. M«. M. WakL wrfe of die chaimun at/Aiztctatt, lis-ited uo th« first dome Idhi, wUcfa hag been erected by Mr tï
Fowler, under the. miperrirloo ot Mr. G» tut.
lían«, jaw tateman Mrs. Wald waa presen*
[vito, a airer «»íd-J-ox to fight up the vt-^1