Matthew Ford’s Infernal Blog

Politics, games, computers, philosophy, human nature, Australia, and general rabbiting on

We have become Australian citizens!

Kat and I (and by extension, Dylan) became Australian citizens on Australia Day 2008, which is… come on, you know it! I know it! (In fact I took a citizenship qualification test which made me memorize it forever, along with the wattle and Phar Lap) …January 26th.We have dual citizenship with the USA, so if the planet gets hit by an asteroid, now we can be sure to have a place to live on the side it does not hit. But more seriously, we are not planning to move back to the USA, so we wanted to participate in the vote, to get that extra bit of comfort knowing we can’t be kicked out, and to be able to call ourselves truly Aussie. It is a great feeling and a tremendous relief. It felt especially good to use my swanky new Aussie passport as I went to and returned from the USA recently.

People often ask why I decided to move to Australia, and my blog is read by people (as well as a few bots who also may be interested), so I will pre-emptively explain. It’s too flip, if not entirely untrue, that I did this because I’m not happy with the direction of the USA, nor with my apparent ability to do a damn thing about that direction. That is not my main reason, and I think I would have decided this even if things were going swimmingly there. I just honestly feel good about contributing my own small efforts to the betterment of this amazing, beautiful, promising country, Australia. Of course some of my reasoning is selfish– it feels great to live in this country and enjoy her wonders. (It’s still so fun to use the feminine grammatical form for a country, doesn’t it?) Beyond that, however, I feel very proud to be part of the Australian story; to join her steadfast, cheeky, durable, independent, life-loving people; and to add to a long tradition of practicality, challenge to authority, self-reliance, mateship, and intellectual exploration. Plus, any country in which the political parties argue over whose fault it is that the budget surplus is so big, and which sits on vast mineral resources close to a swelling Asia, has plenty of opportunity to stay on a good track well into the future. I want to become part of that future. I remain loyal to the USA and wish her well– after all, it (she? it seems a bit obstetric to say “she is full of people”) is full of many people I love. I think humanity, America included, will turn out fine in the long term. But the short term is looking, frankly, pretty dicey, and I think I can do the most good for the most people, me and mine included, by living and working here.

So there you go. To those denizens of political blogs who, after reading my modest proposal posted earlier, urged me to renounce my USA citizenship if I did not like it there– sorry to disappoint you, I remain an American. But hopefully this gives you some small solace to be half rid of me. As for my friends and family, what more can I say, except, come do the same! Come live in Australia! There is plenty of room!

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2 Responses to “We have become Australian citizens!”

  1. 1
    Janet Says:

    Congratulations!

  2. 2
    Connie Says:

    Oh yay! I didn’t know you guys had taken that extra step. And on my birthday too. ;) Congratulations to all, and I hope to follow in your footsteps soon.

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