Agreed, I for example hate yardwork and would desire a smaller property (although admittedly a smaller detached home with a small paved yard), and consider it important to live within a walking distance of a railway station since parking at one is impossible.
With that being said, we might still see a migration to the outer suburbs, non-capital cities, and regional areas due to a recession/mass unemployment as people might not be able to afford the exorbitant rents in the capitals.
The difference is when Ansett collapsed, their wasn't a financial/economic crisis (as far as I know), it would probably take longer to establish a competitor airline given the circumstances.
And unfortunately our government has never shown any desire for regulating big business, thus giving Qantas the ability to price gouge (they already do, imagine if they were the only airline), and potentially providing a greater demand for improved regional rail.
I doubt it's going to be a quick recession, we never had enough jobs to support our population prior to this happening, with that being said, hopefully the population stagnation gives us enough time to provide enough jobs and infrastructure to support our existing population.
We certainly do have a lot to learn from this, there should be no more heavy reliance on other nations which led to us not having enough jobs, and there should be no more mass casualisation of the workforce which led to many being helpless when all this started.
Normally poor financial climate sees a migration to cities as more likely to find work as rural/regional areas tend to suffer more and don't expect rents to remain high if unemployment starts to rise and/or across the board salary cuts.
Re: Ansett, yes, no financial crisis at the time, but still recovering somewhat from Sept-11. Assuming the economy has completed its recessionary direction, you will see the right people move quickly as this is the time to make money.
If you have ever worked in big business you will know how much regulation there is and how much it can strangle business development and how much big business does to remain on side with the govt, so I disagree with that statement.
Qantas charge what the public will pay, business 101. Probably best not to focus on the fares, but focus on their business performance and dividend and taxes on profit. If they are not paying either or much over the longterm, then the prices are not high enough to cover their costs.
The population growth was creating the jobs, without it alot of govt infrastructure investment will slow right down as what we have now is sufficient or the growth demand isn't coming to justify. Remember the days NSW built a new Sydney rail line once in a generation, not term of govt period? The recessionary period will I'm expecting be between 2 and 4mths, because its diving so quickly we get to the bottom quickly. The share market has likely already bottomed out. Also the cause for the recession is due to reasons outside people's incentive to spend, rather ability to spend. As soon as people can return to the market spending things will change, however the damage has been done so job seekers will accept lower wages and likewise those in the market will do the same to retain employment. Also business confidence is now damaged so employers will likely immediately suspend recruitment and major projects (what we are doing).
I cannot see major changes for regional rail outside existing commitments as the market will not overly change. The risk is more likely the loss of services.
Casualisation of the workforce in Australia, I think this term is more abused than used. Have alook at this link https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1718/CasualEmployeesAustralia
Especially Table 1 and Figure 5.
If you are a female, there is no such thing as casualisation of the workforce and your chances of full time vs casual employment have improved since 1992 with females dropping from 30% to 27%.
If you are male, yes you are more likely to be casual increasing from 14 to 23% with most of that change occurring in the first half of the 90's (14 to 19%). You can read into this a number of reasons such as back then this is when businesses and govt departments initiated most of their outsourcing of services, IT, cleaning, maintenance etc supported by the political leadership of the time to make the country more competitive.
I know personally many who choose this as sub-contractors enabling more flexible conditions of employment and earn more money by nominating the hours they want to work not constrained by a rigid 40h week structure. I've done it myself for 5 years (and got finance for a house loan) and my inlaws have been like this for most of their married life in IT. QR also finally got union support for part-time drivers to enable a more flexible workforce. The service sector especially relies on labour on demand, rather than trying to find a demand for labour. Yes, if you like the security of full time work, then its hard on the mind set.
Anyway, my view, I'm sure others will feel otherwise.