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In search of a nation builder

By Everald Compton - posted Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Australia is a disgracefully underdeveloped and poorly planned nation, the result of hugely neglectful politics over a long period of time.

Because no thought has ever been given to balanced development, most of our population is crammed into capital cities where the price of housing is exorbitant, roads are clogged and suburban rail systems are primitive.

80% of our land mass is sparsely populated and poorly serviced by internet, hospitals, water, railways, roads and ports.


Add to this the fact that we are the driest continent on the planet and lament that we have done nothing to drought proof the nation, a neglect which is utterly irresponsible.

Our land has the capacity to make us the food bowl of the world, but few Australians are willing invest in agriculture.

There is a massive shortage of affordable housing because we have deliberately encouraged investors to build inappropriate apartments that they keep empty so as to provide them with a huge tax loss.

I could go on with a litany of examples of bad government, but I don’t want to foster any depression in your soul.

Let’s look for a solution.

We need to find and foster nation builders who will take the considerable risks necessary to create a great country.


A century ago, we did have one.

His name was John Flynn and you will remember him in legend as Flynn of the Inland.

He was a country boy from a poor family in a small community near Bendigo, but he went on to build a couple of dozen bush hospitals in the remotest parts of our continent. Then he invented the Pedal Radio, established the Flying Doctor Service and created the School of the Air.

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About the Author

Everald Compton is Chairman of The Longevity Forum, a not for profit entity which is implementing The Blueprint for an Ageing Australia. He was a Founding Director of National Seniors Australia and served as its Chairman for 25 years. Subsequently , he was Chairman for three years of the Federal Government's Advisory Panel on Positive Ageing.

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