The continent has most of the world's most poisonous snakes, not only on land but in the ocean. It has the world's largest crocodiles, and one can be devoured by one in or near the ocean or a river, and then out in the surf great white sharks abound. And I haven't even mentioned box jellyfish, blue ring octopi, stone fish, or the red backed and funnel spiders.

If ever a land was saying "Go away, people," it's Australia.

Add to all this that Sydney, strangely, is one of the most expensive cities on Earth and that you're so far from the United States (where everyone wants to go) and why would anyone live there, much less WANT to live there?

So, why are there people in Australia? What explains it?

Yes, and of course I'm being tongue in cheek. I'm sure there are many reasons to risk the many ways to die there.

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We've joked about those risks for years.  I even have a book about Australia called Coping with Dangerous Sea Life.   However.... most dangerous things (other than people) don't come looking for you and I'm sure Australians are pretty well educated on how to avoid them.  It's a beautiful country, with a good quality of life.  Surely everyone doesn't want to go to the US - I would love to leave, personally.   

A factish link on deaths due to dangerous animals in Oz:

Most of them are the descendents of convicts, I don't think the Crown really cared about the risks they faced.  The original inhabitants grew up there and didn't see anything unusual about the risks (until the Brits showed up that is).  Also it's where all the retired NASCAR drivers go to live because they can go counter-clockwise around the entire country. :)

PS. They drink beer from really BIG CANS. :)

RetirementWikipedia: Retirement is the point where a person stops employment completely.

You forgot drop bears.

They are supposedly fictitious, but koala bears are real enough. Although they look cute and cuddly, the facts show that they are not a critter you'd really want to cuddle with. Let's start with the fact that most of them have a veneral disease and koala babies get their sustenance from their mother's poop. They are also lazy as all get out. They are basically parallel evolution sloths. Yuck!

koala bears

Koalas are not bears! Also, their mating call is scary as fuck if you don't know what it is.

@Unseen - well, I would like to say, I have convict relatives, but, sadly no. My great grandparents came here from Sweden and France. We also keep putting out the stories about "The most poison snakes in the world, and we have ginormous human eating spiders, and bloody great huge crocodiles everywhere', and it works a treat. Population is small compared to most countries. Don't mind if Americans visit, just make sure you go home again.

Lots of gum trees, and more gum trees, and yet more gum trees - truly the most boring tree ever.

I have never personally seen a shark or box jellyfish, crocodile or blue ring octopi, or stone fish, red backs are prolific, you just have to have a shoe. They don't kill, but can make a child sick. Even the kids kill them. Funnel web spiders are only in Sydney, and I saw one thirty years ago, which the faithful shoe put an end to. So. the PR on dangerous things are working a treat.

But, yes Sydney is expensive, and it is worth it. One is more likely to get hit by a car.

Melbourne is actually the better place to be, much more sophisticated than Sydney, more theatre, art, museums and restaurants. The weather is shite, though.

Loads of desert, which I have never seen, nor wish to see.

We hate being told what to do - generally anarchistic in nature.

We aren't getting bombed, which is a definite plus, how we actually escaped that, I don't know. But it looks like we are going to get a catholic right wing Prime Minister in two weeks time, then Australia is going to see shite hit fan.

We also came through the Global Financial catastrophe with no repercussions, how did America fare?

There is a beach here called Bondi - highly overrated - it is amazing what PR can do, and the only ones that have to be rescued every day, are tourists who have never seen the ocean before.

The education system is crap - way down the list.

Australians have to be really pushed to react - probably generally too lazy to get out of their own way - we are having too much fun, but push too hard, which is what Islamists are doing at the moment, the worm will turn.

Oh, I forgot - there are also dingoes, that take babies - true story.

We have brilliant stand up comedians and actors - but nothing like the Poms - they are the best comedians and Atheists around.

And, yes, it is the best country in the world. :)

So, Unseen, just be very careful, 'she' has a swift moving right knee :)

"Melbourne is actually the better place to be, much more sophisticated than Sydney, more theatre, art, museums and restaurants. The weather is shite, though."  - I loved that movie, The Castle.

I wonder if the cost of living there is significantly lower than that of Sydney, which is rated as the world's 10th most expensive city.

I think Melbourne is a close 11th...

Yeah, you just have to like a paternalistic state that wants to protect its public from free speech and expression. For example, jackboots came in and removed this highly incendiary and offensive piece of Paul Yore art from a Melbourne gallery. YOU couldn't see it in Australia, but from the United States (a place that actually values freedom of expression, even when it's offensive), I can show it to you. Their excuse had something to do with child pornography. I'm not joking. Was it the combination of stylized penises and a happy face or just the festive colors we seem to think children love?:

Tell them how much a pack of cigarettes costs, Suz --

Quite coincidentally, I don't have any relatives that are convicts either - at least not now, since they reinstated the death penalty.

Actually, my parents were in the iron and steal business - my mother ironed --

See, comedy's not so hard.

Last I checked, cigarettes are about $15 a pack of 20 I think. Soon they will be more than $1 per death stick.


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