All for Australia
All for Australia is a 1984 book by Australian historian Professor Geoffrey Blainey. It criticises Australian immigration policy and the direction in which it is shaping the nation. In particular, the book is critical of what Blainey views as the disproportionately high levels of Asian immigration to Australia since the mid-1970s.
Overview and main themes
In All for Australia, Blainey argues:
- For the sake of national unity, the typical nation practises discrimination against migrants on the basis of ethnicity. Ironically, the Asian countries which Australia is too afraid to "offend" have no hesitation in using this right to retain their current ethnic compositions.
- Every nation relies on a sense of community. That sense of community belonging can easily be damaged by the rapid entry of foreign peoples who unintentionally erode national cohesion.
- Immigration is one of the most important issues facing a nation. The notion that it is too contentious to be publicly debated makes a mockery of democracy.
- Multiculturalism tends to emphasise the rights of ethnic minorities at the expense of the majority of Australians, thus unnecessarily encouraging division and threatening social cohesion.
- The policy of multiculturalism has tended to be implicitly anti-British, despite Australia's British colonial heritage and the large number of post-World War II British immigrants to Australia.
- Australian immigration policy has moved from one extreme to another, from a policy that sought to encourage European immigration and restrict Asian immigration (White Australia policy), to a policy that now gives disproportionate preference to Asian immigration. Blainey asserts that this preferential treatment of Asian immigrants partly arose from a sense of guilt over the Vietnam War, but also reflected Canberra's misguided view that more trade with Asian countries would come with a larger Asian population.
- Strangers In Their Own Land - synopsis of the major points made in All For Australia
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