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Melbourne must stop growing - Packed hall in Hawthorn votes for plebiscite

Videos of KELVIN THOMSON and all panel speakers have been added to this article. Open mic part now published here too. Today, June 14, 2014, a packed hall with people standing at the back in the Hawthorn Arts Centre voted for a national plebiscite to ask the people what size population they wanted. The forum interacted with a panel of four speakers: Kelvin Thomson, MP for Wills; Sheila Newman, Evolutionary Sociologist and editor and writer; Clifford Hayes, former Bayside Council Mayor and planning activist; and William Bourke, Leader of the Sustainable Population Party. There was a queue for the open microphone and the meeting closed later than expected. All motions passed with an overwhelming show of hands.

Packed meeting in Hawthorn backs vote on Victoria’s population

We will probably replace this film with another from another angle which recorded the size of the audience, the applause and the show of hand on the motions. In the meantime this gives the content of the Open Microphone session.

The Hawthorn Arts Centre was the venue for a large public meeting today asking the question “Must Melbourne keep growing?” Speakers, Hon. Kelvin Thomson MP, Ms. Sheila Newman, evolutionary sociologist, Mr. Clifford Hayes, former Bayside mayor and Planning activist and Mr. William Bourke president of “ Sustainable Population Party” all addressed the meeting with the ultimate message that Melbourne does not have to keep growing. The audience was given the floor for the open mic second hour of the program and took full advantage of this. The meeting voted unanimously for the federal government to hold a national vote on Australia’s population aiming to stabilise by 2040:

''That, on the basis of State of the Environment reports and in the interests of democracy, the meeting calls on the federal government to hold a national vote on population at or before the next federal election, with a proposal to allow Australia to stabilise its population by 2040. A working group will be formed by concerned citizens in order to draft an appropriate question."

Meeting voted for Gov to have scientific conference re long-term sustainable population

Additionally the meeting voted unanimously for the Victorian Government to convene a scientifically based conference to establish the long term sustainable population for the state, on a motion proposed by Ms Julianne Bell, of Protectors of Public Land:

"That this meeting calls on the Victorian government to convene a scientifically based Victorian conference on what constitutes a long term environmentally sustainable population for Victoria, with reference to the Victorian State of the environment reports of 2008 and 2013 indicating environmental damage from current population levels."

According to the President of Sustainable Population Australia’s Victorian and Tasmanian branch, Ms. Jill Quirk, ”The first resolution is to give the Australian people the right to determine their own quality of life and quality of the environment for the present and future. The second is asking the government to undertake its absolute responsibility and to stop the reckless, irreversible destruction caused by needless rapid population growth and over development happening now.”


Saturday 28 June 1 pm Rally "Trains Not Tolls Rally or #Rally4PT

This rally is scheduled for Saturday 28 June 2014 and will start in front of the State Library in Melbourne’s CBD at 1 pm. More details as they come to hand.

Sunday Age: Reform lock up our suburbs:
Melbourne, and its residents, are to be twisted, packed and squeezed into a tight fit, and a once liveable city will be distorted by over-development and over-population. It's not "planning" but the end result of market forces having a free reign, resulting in a dysfunctional city determined by social and political engineering!

What's visioned by our leaders is a city bristling with three times as many high-rise towers as today. Twenty-storey apartment buildings along commercial strips in the suburbs. Continued sprawl on Melbourne's fringes, where there are few services and little transport. And a sea of single-dwelling housing in a low-rise middle suburbia, swaths of which have reached the end of their utility but will be uneconomic to redevelop.

It will be a monument to greed, and an encroachment of our city that will see it hardened, heartless, generic, congested, soul-less, ugly and obese.

This is Melbourne's housing future under the Napthine government's new planning policy - but rather than being asked to participate in the direction our city, and lives, are being hurtled towards, we are being manipulated and conned for the benefit of property developers, corporations and bankers!

Sunday Age: Reform locks up our suburbs

Rather than a "plan", Plan Melbourne will actually be a self-fulfilling prophesy, or "projection" of our population growth - deliberately to fill all the new apartments. Many of these apartments will be foreign owned. Most of the population will not be the existing population or their descendants, but be fillers from overseas!

There's nothing organic, evolutionary or natural about this growth being forced onto us. This vision of Melbourne is not owned by the people, but by our governments who are fully entrenched in our "growth" - and profits.

Plan Melbourne is a Trojan horse that will allow our city to be infiltrated and locked down by property developers and those in powerful places with vested interests. It may appear benign, or something that we must accept as inevitable, and even desirable, but once its ratified and implemented, we'll see our lifestyles and living standards tumble and descend to compacted living - cheek to jowl. Residents' lives will be captured to suit the growth-ists and our city will be controlled and contorted by the powers-that-be hiding inside.

The Melbourne Age is active in our dispossession and the destruction of our democracy because it never permits us to effectively question the right of the government to roll out massive and alienating infrastructure and fill it with inhabitants imported from other countries. This should not surprise given the financial interest of all our media groups in land, real estate, 'lifestyle' consumables and marketing.

It is sad to see how reliant people remain on the Age, apparently not even aware of the Age's property dot com,, which, like News Inc's, markets land and property to buyers all over the world.

These dot coms market to overseas investors using this out-of-control population growth as an incentive to buy into property.

"New stats: capital cities packing them in" by Venessa Paech, 24 Apr 2014: "Australian Bureau of Statistics statistics show our capital cities grew by more than three times the rest of the country in the last year. “In 2013, two in three (66%) Australians lived in a capital city, a slight increase since 1973 when 65% lived in a capital,” said ABS Director of Demography, Denise Carlton. “By 2053, this share is projected to increase to 72%. That equates to 28 million people living in the capitals in 2053.”

And, of course, both these newsgroups continually suppress or attack any cogent objections to forced population growth via excessive rates of immigration.

They are also active in creating the confused impression that most immigrants are refugees and that the government is controlling immigration by controlling our borders to keep boat people out. For unknown reasons, the Greens have supplied their parties to assist in the creation of this confusion, and Greens members are actually afraid to talk about population numbers.

It would be hard to find more unreliable information than in the Age and the Australian. We have more to fear as well, because there is no way that enough fuel can be found to supply these mad growth projects, which are doomed to falter and fail, leaving millions in hardship with nowhere to turn. It seems to me that all our mainstream media, including the ABC, as Michael S., writes about most recently on, are complicit in an invasion of Australia by infrastructure and people which will prove just as deadly as the ones where they also demonize democratic resistance, in Syria and Ukraine, Iraq and Afghanistan. The fascist quality (big business-led and intellectually thuggish) of this invasion lies in the fact that it is engineered by our 'elected' representatives. Candidates in the elections that produced these abusers of democracy were limited to those that met the approval of the Age and the Australian and their corporate investors, and the ABC and SBS were also complicit.

More of this malignant celebration here:

"Most of the population will not be the existing population or their descendants, but be fillers from overseas!"

So what? We all share the misfortune of having been brought into existence. Death and extinction are inevitable, we (and your descendants if any) are all going to die in the end anyway, it will be as if the human organism had never existed.

"There's nothing organic, evolutionary or natural about this growth being forced onto us."

It is existence which is forced onto us!!! LIFE, the product of unintelligent biological evolutionary design, is an insidious and pointless game of winners and losers where everyone loses in the end.

Existence has a point if you can enjoy life. That seems to go for every animal and plant. When we have room and a place, reasonable health and access to sunlight etc, we live enthusiastically. Living in an overpopulated environment where you have little freedom or security and nature is damaged is no fun, therefore pointless.

Doesn't sound as if you are having much fun, POTA. Hope things improve.

Thanks for responding, Sheila.

"Existence has a point if you can enjoy life. That seems to go for every animal and plant."

Sheila, I'm saying Life has no 'intrinsic' purpose or function. From cosmic perspective, it becomes evident that Life is not on a rescue mission and when it is all said and done, nothing will have been accomplished. Unfortunately, sentient life has an associated cost or waste or friction to it, called suffering.

Creating beings who experience joy or happiness is not necessary nor a reasonable justification for the creation of new centres of suffering. Statistically, we know a percentage of the populace (the victims) WILL suffer severely.

"When we have room and a place, reasonable health and access to sunlight etc, we live enthusiastically."

Sure, let's do what we can for the folks and our non-human animal friends who are already here, but let's not endorse the creation of new victims.

"Doesn't sound as if you are having much fun, POTA. Hope things improve."

Thank you for your concern but I'm just the messenger, I believe this is primarily a philosophical argument.

You are asking the age old question which has been posed by philosophers since there was Philosophy.

Given there is no choice as to whether to be born, the question has been "Is life worth living?". I note this question is not universal either. Not every culture has posed the question to themselves in this way.

The process isn't intelligent or by design, but we are. "Is life worth living?" can be changed to "Can we make life worth living?", and there the answer is, probably "yes", given we maintain the conditions which enable us to answer in the affirmative. I think one of the unique features of the Western world, is its ability, occasionally, to answer "yes" and make it a reality. To eliminate disease, provide food, give people dignity and respect through civil codes, recognition of rights, technology and design. These have been somewhat exceptions to the rule, but they're there.

We seem to be heading in the other direction, away from making life worth living, to making life something to be endure for the sake of some other process. It doesn't have to be this way. Given that life will continue, whether you want it or not, wouldn't it therefore be better for future generations to work on making life better, worth living, than giving up and leaving them to suffer?