Minister for the Ring of Border Steel, Mr Peter Dutton gives excellent “Serious Sam” as he makes it clear that Winston Churchill had nothing on him when it comes to resisting unapproved seaborne arrivals.
No doubt the local kids knew that steering clear of Officer Dutton was in their best interests as the trusty prowl car circled donutshops in the QLD badlands. At least until Officer Dutton made the leap to politics and property investment.
With such gravitas it makes his failures to secure our airports all the more puzzling. If it wasn’t so outrageous one might be tempted to think he was, like some of his colleagues, distracted by the auction listings on realestate.com.au.
While zero ‘irregular’ boats have arrived on his watch our airports are like Bourke Street Mall on boxing day with new immigrants and temporary residents pouring through the arrival lounges.
As a functioning example of an immigrant society Australia has demonstrated that immigration can be a very good thing but like all good things ‘moderation’ is the key.
But when it comes to ‘moderation’ and immigration policy Minister Dutton has lost the plot.
So what does a ‘moderate’ rate of immigration look like?
It is probably easier to say what it doesn’t look like:
- School playgrounds packed to the rafters with demountables
- Hospitals struggling to cope
- Roads congested and traffic moving slow
- Massive new high priced toll roads that do no more than allow you to get between the same A and B that you used to do for free.
- Massive sales of public assets in a desperate attempt to find some coin to pay for long neglected infrastructure. Along with sky high user charges as the new ‘owners’ seek to make a nice juicy guaranteed return.
- Sardine packed train carriages
- Standing room only buses
- Prices for existing housing that are going through the roof and beyond
- High priced Skybox housing as the only housing option for low and increasingly middle income earners.
- Tax increases by Scott Morrison (for some) to try to stem the exploding government budget deficit generated in part by the massive expense of Mr Dutton’s failure to manage a moderate rate of immigration.
One wonders how such a ‘Hard Head’ like Minister Dutton has proved to be such a dismal failure in border control!
Perhaps the enthusiasm of our major political parties for massive corporate donations contains the answer, especially from those industries that profit from massive and out of control rates of immigration:
- land ownership
- Property development
Surely, our political leaders would not be selling out the interests of the general public just to deliver on the demands from their corporate sponsors?
Too bloody right they are.
Simply to ensure that their donors and the well heeled corporates, tax rorters etc can make bumper profits from stuffing Australia to the brim as fast as possible, the rest of the community will be forced to bear the inconvenience and the cost of the infrastructure that a Big Australia requires desperately but the profiteers and carpet baggers will not contribute towards.
Private profit and the public pick up the bill.
How much is a moderate rate of immigration?
As a ball park figure – 70,000 per annum.
This was the approximate rate over many decades until Howard decided to pursue a very big Australia on the quiet and crank it up to over 200,000 per year.
And in case you were wondering, they should be selected on merit and drawn from the four corners of the planet as within a very short time they will be as dinky di as you and I.
Furthermore a target of 25,000 within that 70,000 for refugee resettlement would seem reasonable and involve almost a doubling of our current intake. The exact division between refugee intake and regular immigration is up to the government of the day and the capacity of support services to assist the preferred mix.
One of the most bizarre features of this immigration fiasco is that the Greens and the ALP have wedged themselves out of the debate and just stand by saying sweet nothing as people get more and more furious that something as simple as a ‘moderate rate’ of immigration is too much for their leaders to comprehend.
It is frequently argued that we could happily support higher rates of immigration if we ‘invested’ in more infrastructure. That is true but the fact is that investing in infrastructure should happen BEFORE the high rates of immigration and not after.
When the Big Australia spruikers / boosters are able to point to underpopulated schools in our cities, congestion free roads, uncrammed public transport THEN they will have a much easier job of convincing the average Australian that we can support a higher rate of immigration. But that would involve them allocating more resources to infrastructure investment and encouraging fewer resources into consumption and debt fueled asset price bidding wars – unfortunately Mr Morrison loves an economy running hot on household debt and trade deficit gobbling consumption.
That would certainly be a superior approach to the current one where people are jammed in like sardines and anyone who complains is labelled a racist or xenophobe.
It is no surprise that Pauline Hanson and Mr Bernardi see a tempting opportunity.