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Who wants to be an Australian citizen

Cashing in on the popularity of game shows, the Australian Government has decided that, to be a citizen, you have to be able to do things like take a 50-50 or phone a friend, as reported by the Age. I'll leave the detailed analysis to others, but I thought I'd have a crack at the questions. As readers of this site will be aware, I think Australian history is very important, and I will be using all the knowledge contained therein to answer the questions.

1. In what year did Federation take place? Well, the guys with big, bushy beards decided in 1900, so, if we assume years worth of consultation, several failed refferenda, some squabbling about structure and general procrastination, I'll say it must have been about 1983.

2. Which day of the year is Australia Day? Hopefully a Monday. Although Friday is good, too. Tuesday or Thursday'll do at a pinch so that we can take the Monday or Friday off and have a very long weekend.

3. Who was the first Prime Minister of Australia? Let's see - if Australia was federated in 1983, it must have been Hawk Keating. Hmmm. Hang on. I know Menzies was PM at some point, so maybe there was only one failed refferendum. Can I guess 1949 as my answer to 1?

4. What is the first line of Australia's national anthem? Once a jolly swagman camped by a billabong. Oh, wait, that's an ad for Billy Tea. How about "Australians all let us reach Joyce, for she is young and free"? I'm not sure on that one, actually. But I know the last line is "Carn the Dees"

5. What is the floral emblem of Australia? Hang on! I know this one! I saw a documentary about it once. "This here's the wattle, the symbol of our land". Or is it VB?

6. What is the population of Australia? I saw this sitcom once where this red-haired former fish and chip shop owner talked about politics and stuff, and she said there'd been an Asian invasion. A few years later they remade the series and she was talking about a Muslim invasion. I guess the population must be about 2 billion then, given these two invasions.

7. In what city is the Parliament House of the Commonwealth Parliament located? I saw Amanda Vanstone in Italy the other day, and I heard she was working there, so I guess the answer has to be Rome.

8. Who is the Queen's representative in Australia? The Governor-General. No, wait, doesn't each state's Governor also represent the queen? This is harder than I thought. Surely there's only one right answer. It must be the bloke who organises Mardi Gras then.

9. How are Members of Parliament chosen? A small cabal of branch representatives for each party decide who is going to be selected for the party for that electorate. On election day (elections are held at the whim of the PM) people then have a sausage and try to vote for the least-bad option of the limited selection available.

10. Who do Members of Parliament represent? Depends on the party: Labor - union interests; Liberals - the leader of the party; Nats - farmers; Greens - the watermelon left; Family First - fundamentalist Christians; Democrats - an irrelevant question after the next election

11. After a federal election, who forms the new government? Kermit as PM, Miss Piggy as treasurer (she hands out the pork), Scooter, Gonzo, Fozzy etc.

12. What are the colours on the Australian flag? Green and canary yellow Australian gold

13. Who is the head of the Australian Government? George W Bush

14. What are the three levels of government in Australia? The corrupt, the incompetent and the irrelevant

15. In what year did the European settlement of Australia start? 1788

16. Serving on a jury if required is a responsibility of Australian citizenship: true or false? I thought "getting out of jury duty if possible" was a responsibility of Australian citizenship.

17. In Australia, everyone is free to practise the religion of their choice, or practise no religion: true of false? Depends. I thought there were laws against being Muslim at the moment.

18. To be elected to the Commonwealth Parliament you must be an Australian citizen: true or false? Depends what the people in question 9 think.

19. As an Australian citizen, I have the right to register my baby born overseas as an Australian citizen: true or false? I'll phone a friend on this one - or open it to comments, as the case may be.

20. Australian citizens aged 18 years or over are required to enrol on the electoral register: true or false? False - the Australian Government makes it as difficult as possible for Australians aged 18 or over to enrol on the electoral register.


Comment from Gillian

I'm impressed. especially by no. 9. Although I'm fairly certain that's not the answer the PTB will be looking for!

Comment from gelfen

17. what's the point in practising? when's the big match coming up?

and for 19, the answer is true. you can register the birth with any Australian embassy or consulate.

I add

In case anyone was wondering, there were two dubious answers (I added them in to see if anyone was paying attention).

13. Should be Rupert Murdoch

15. The European Settlement of Australia started well before 1788. Australia was first settled by Europeans in 1788, but the settlement began, at the very latest, when the first fleet left. You could make claims that it started when Terra Nullius was declared, or when Cook's expedition arrived in Australia. Or even when it left Europe.

Comment from gelfen

if you really want to start drawing long bows, you could say European settlement of Australia began with the shipwrecked Dutch and Portuguese sailors dating back up to a century or more before Cook's voyage.

I respond

That may well be a valid, but separate claim. I'm not sure they had a viable settlement - if they did, it didn't last too long, did it? I'd keep the distinction because they weren't looking to found the Australian settlement that was eventually formed. I'd still put the date as when the first fleet left. I don't think that is too long a bow for the question as is asked.

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