Is the refugee review too soft?

Government claims most of those arriving by boat are ‘economic migrants’

Is the refugee review too soft?

Denis O’Brien, the leading lawyer who headed the Refugee Review Tribunal for five years until June last year, has dismissed Foreign Minister Bob Carr’s claims that a flood of ‘economic migrants’ have been wrongly classed as refugees because the system is too soft. He went on to say that Australia would be in danger of breaching its obligations under the refugee convention if it tried to tighten the criteria by which asylum is assessed.

“I’ve been surprised, I must say, by the commentary”, Mr O’Brien said. The refugee tribunal had to apply the definition under the refugees’ convention, he said. “So I don’t see a lot of scope for tightening up without sort of running afoul of ... the United Nations High Commission for Refugees”.

Senator Carr last week flagged a tightening of the way asylum is assessed, amid fresh political sparring on the sensitive topic between the new Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, and the Coalition.

Scott Morrison, opposition immigration spokesman, has sharpened his attacks, declaring that to “stop the boats”, Australia must help its northern neighbour “stop the planes” – referring to the passage of asylum seekers to countries such as Indonesia from which people smugglers operate.

Senator Carr has said many or even most people arriving by boat were economic migrants, not refugees, particularly middle-class Iranians, who were “increasingly not people fleeing persecution”.

It is understood Australia is seeking ways to return failed Iranian asylum seekers home, as it now done with Sri Lankans.

Senator Carr said Australian diplomatic mission in source countries would be called on to make a bigger contribution to asylum assessments. “There’s some evidence that the tribunals have not been hard-headed enough”.

Mr O’Brien contradicted this, saying the tribunal had detailed and up-to-date information on conditions in source countries. In a vigorous defence of the system, he said he did not believe he had made an incorrect decision as a tribunal member.

“By and large, the refugee review tribunal gets it right”.

Read more at The Age website

Watch ABC’s Q&A from Monday 1 July 2013 

 

Opinion: Can the politics of boats sink even lower?

It’s been a week of momentous change for the nation, not least because of the significant racheting-up of Australia’s war on refugee boats. The Federal Opposition’s Scott Morrison is still as strident and predictable as ever, trotting out the same tired clichés and slogans, but the change in tenor has been from the Government’s Foreign Minister. Bob Carr is normally, and sometimes painfully, measured in his public utterances. My initial reaction was that Carr had been caught off guard or taken out of context but, sadly, after several more days of consistently aggressive rhetoric, it’s clear he and the Prime Minister are adopting a new tack.

So is it cynical to suspect that, with the return of Rudd to the Lodge, we’re witnessing the initial stage of a new government initiative? Not so much ‘turn back the boats’, but ‘fly back the refugees’. Such public announcements would normally fall in the Minister for Immigration’s bailiwick, but perhaps the newly sworn in Tony Burke is judged to be too ‘soft’ or ‘nice’ for the government’s new refugee policy. Also interestingly, Carr is one of the few ministers not to have been subject to the Rudd reshuffle last weekend. For viewers of ABC TV’s Q&A last Monday, the first victim of this new hardline policy on refugees was one of the government’s own. The Minister for Health, Tanya Plibersek, had the unenviable task of putting the government’s case on a panel that included the Shadow Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Sophie Mirabella. The latter was capably rebuffed, but a direct question concerning whether Plibersek supported Carr’s most recent statements on refugees sorely challenged one of the government’s most capable and impressive ministers. Clearly, her integrity and honesty forced her to disagree with Carr’s contention that most people arriving by boat are ‘economic migrants’.

Do you agree with the government’s new tougher stance on those arriving by boat? Or do you support the former head of the refugee tribunal when he says our system is not too soft? 





    COMMENTS

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    helenhg
    4th Jul 2013
    11:34am
    Yes it has been to soft I agree and I think if we fly them back straight away this will be a deterrent. I do not believe for one minute that all of these people are refugees they are people that have paid very well to come here and we just cannot afford them, 8 billion dollars spent is money that we could be putting into our hospitals and schools. Then people would not have to wait so long for attention and our schools would be better off. This is a market and the people smugglers are laughing at us all the way to the bank.
    Paddles
    4th Jul 2013
    1:30pm
    helenhg

    How many countries should we put on the list to which boat people are returned?
    Presumably, you won't include Indonesia as, apart from the boat's crew, there are almost no Indonesian refugees as Indonesia is but a transit country for Afghanistan, Pakistan, Myanmar, Bangladesh and so on nationals.

    Many, if not most, are undocumented so what do you think their reception would be in Kabul, Karachi etc?

    Sorry! You are mouthing the platitudes that have become so common among the non-thinkers when dealing with this problem.
    Hasbeen
    4th Jul 2013
    1:42pm
    Paddles, how they are received is none of our business. They made their bed, & now it is time they lay in it, not us & our welfare system.

    As it is obvious that they must be some of the wealthiest of citizens in the poor countries they come from, to have been able to afford the smuggler charges, I expect they will be picked up from the airport in a nice family car, by relatives who will commiserate with them that their rip off attempt failed.
    LENYJAC
    5th Jul 2013
    7:59am
    HERE HERE HELENHG.. AND HASBEEN..SEND THEM STRAIGHT BACK.. AND TO THE DO GOODERS YOU LOT TAKE THEM INTO YOUR HOMES AND PAY FOR THEIR UPKEEP NOT GOVNM,T FUNDED EITHER???????
    Troubadour
    4th Jul 2013
    12:31pm
    My sentiments exactly. Many of these are NOT true refugees and making a mockery of a system that hitherto has worked.
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    catsahoy
    9th Jul 2013
    12:41am
    must say i agree with the above comments, take them to the nearest port of call and let them off, they found there way here, let them find there way home, our hospitals and homeless could do with some of this charity that is being throw around,
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    12:45pm
    Yes, from what I can glean from media reports, I agree that it would appear that a lot of persons arriving via a quick boat trip from nearby Indonesian ports would be 'country shopping' for whatever reason(s) put forward. Certainly I wonder at those persons, who may be of the Muslim faith and who travel, by air, stay temporarily in a stable Muslim country, don't claim refugee status there and then pay quite large sums of money to travel, when able in a boat on a, relatively, short sea voyage. Luckily for them there is a very efficient and experienced Naval force (our R.A.N.) ready to respond to reported contacts by our very efficient and experienced Aviation Surveillance service OR the Distress calls that these 'refugee' boats make via their Satellite/mobile phones. The other thing that worries/annoys me is the report that the occupants of so many boats don't have identity papers when 'rescued'/uplifted and I must assume that since they have obviously travelled a great distance via air that they have deliberately destroyed this documentation. It doesn't take much thinking to know why :(
    Bes
    4th Jul 2013
    12:57pm
    Nice to see the Labor Party coming to it's senses and taking a 'Liberal' stance?
    40,000 have arrived while Labor has been in office and with one of their own now in cabinet it gives an even greater incentive.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    1:16pm
    It is a (expensive) shame that BOTH sides of our Government just cannot get together on this very serious situation/problem/rort/deceptive practice etc (whatever you want to call it) and resolve it !! They would be saving lives/taxpayers money/our international credibility/resources etc. Not TOO much to ask of BOTH sides of Government is it ?? The Government DOES work for the Australian people doesn't it ??

    4th Jul 2013
    1:05pm
    The GENUINE REFUGEE...are those Australians...whom this Govt keeps on low income benefits, whilst they give themselves pay rises of 1000's of dollars and gives away taxpayer money to others countries.

    The GOVT takes from the AUSTRALIAN CITIZEN and they then become homeless refugees begging on the streets. AS we saw in the recent Four Corners show.

    AUSTRALIANS are the real refugees in their own land.
    fey
    4th Jul 2013
    1:17pm
    I support the comments from the former head of refugee tribunal who knows the what he is talking about ... unlike Bob Carr who should only be commenting publicly on foreign affairs, i.e. the issues that he has been briefed on, and not mouthing off the usual populist redneck view on a subject about which he knows very little.
    Fairgo
    4th Jul 2013
    1:17pm
    When Labor came to power in 2007, Australia has been swamped with "economic refugees" jumping the conventional queque to immigrate and bypassing the usual qualifying criteria because the Rudd-Gillard government have been far too soft. Indeed they threw out the welcome mat and did little to discourage the daily boat load of 100 illegal queque jumpers with the RAN going into Indonesian waters to rescue boats that pulled the plug so that they could be rescued. What a laugh? How tragic? At what cost? What about our own homeless citizens? What about aged care? This issue needs addressing and I am unconvinced that we will see much change while we have a soft Labor Government who are so beholding to the Greens.
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    1:19pm
    • People do not choose to become refugees. Their only choice is to seek refuge and safety as they flee. They are doing exactly what each of us would do in the same circumstances.
    • Whether they are rich or poor is has nothing to do with their lot.
    • They are a product of disaster - natural or manmade. The increase of refugees worldwide is a direct result of the world’s most powerful economies impacting on Iraq, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka through interference and/or invasion. Australia has allied itself with this process and we cannot distance ourselves from the consequences of displaced people.
    • Thank you Tanya Plibersek for standing up to a bully policy. That was gutsy. A bully is a dysfunctional person with strength who picks on the weakest. They are notorious for using the language of labels to disempower their victims. How easy it is to tell the most disempowered people in the world to go back where they came from. That is not a deterrent. It is a death sentence. We label them “boat people”, “illegals”; “queue jumpers”, “economic opportunists”. So we imprison them and their children. We never see their faces behind razor wire. We never hear their voice. The media are forbidden to approach them. But these are real people, real families. They are just like you and me. Shame on those who pretend otherwise. We are witnessing awful bullying on a national scale.
    • Most are genuine refugees. If you are not sure of this, check out the findings of the Refugee Review Tribunal. As a layman who successfully took on the case of a refugee applicant I saw first hand the rigorous process applied by the Tribunal. As a result of this case our nation has been enriched by the contribution of three new loyal, hard-working citizens.
    • In the long run, migrants add to the economic strength of our country. We cannot afford not to have them. Any economist will confirm this. The cost of settlement and integration is minimal compared to the long term benefits. They don’t take jobs. They create jobs.
    • There are viable solutions but our leaders have become intimidated by the media and the dubious perception that the majority of Australians want to keep Australia to themselves. Thank goodness for the voice of one giant and statesman in this dialogue, the voice of reason and compassion - Malcolm Fraser.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    1:30pm
    One question. When WILL/CAN we say ...... enough ! No more, we have to address OUR real problems within OUR borders more fully as we owe it to OUR citizens. Do you have an answer to that ?
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    3:09pm
    In answer to your question Heyybod. On the day we stop wars. The same day we can control fire, flood and drought. Saying “enough” will not make the dilemma of refugees go away. We have signed an international agreement to harbour those fleeing persecution so they will naturally look to us for compassion. I think that is very Australian. Along with our internal ‘problems’, the external ‘problems’ are no more and no less the challenges of life. We either face them or wallow in them. I think that our government/s have done an admirable job in managing our internal affairs, or as you call define them, OUR real problems. I seem to recall this debate raging during the years of the Vietnamese boat people arriving. We made them citizens and the problem went away. And Gee! What a difference they have made to Australia. Why are we so afraid of refugees? They are just ordinary people making an extraordinary effort to survive. If we made the effort to befriend a few we would quickly realise the the problem is our fear of the unknown.

    Now let me ask you a question? If Australia were invaded by a hostile persecuting power and you watched everything you had ever built up destroyed before your eyes, several of your children tortured to death, friends and family executed. You are next on the list and at the last minute someone agrees to get you, your wife and surviving children out of the country for a substantial fee. You have the fee in gold. They require your passport to process false papers. You reluctantly hand it over. And now the small aircraft with long range fuel tanks is idling at a remote airport ready to fly you to freedom. Would you take the opportunity in spite of the risk? I just hope that Heyybob isn't waiting for you when you land.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    3:52pm
    Wow !! I don't know where you got the script for your last para BUT it aint really like that with all of these people flocking to our shores, IN INCREASING NUMBERS. I'll ask you the same as I asked someone else who likes 'warm fuzzy feelings' over reality in Australia for some of our citizens who have spent a lifetime making it a great place to live......when will YOU say enough !! "No more, we DO have to look after our citizens who need/deserve our support " ????
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    4:04pm
    Waiting for your answer?
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    4:06pm
    And Gosh. I didn't know that ALL Australians have it so good that we don't have to worry about their welfare anymore and how it is, IN FACT, deteriorating. I know, we can just bundle them up and put them on a boat and send them to the little State of Utopia that you live in :( Forgive my criticism but I believe in charity begins at home. I acknowledge definitely and strongly approve of our INCREASED and ongoing assistance, to genuine and proven refugees that continue to arrive through the system that we have been using for decades now.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    4:12pm
    By the way some of those citizens who need/deserve our support now could include some of the citizens of other countries that we helped settle here prior to this avalanche of arrivals that we have seen in the last 24 months and that WILL NOT DECREASE. In fact I'm willing to wager that it will increase unless YOU come up with a better solution ;)
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    4:45pm
    heyybob. The answer is self-evident when place yourself in the other person's shoes. I wouldn't hesitate to grab the lifeline with both hands. I would try seek the refuge of a country that had signed the refugee accord. And I would hope that the chosen country would honour the terms of the accord. A logical starting point in any contentious matter is to understand all the issues from both sides and I can see that we both acknowledge the need of a humanitarian response to the plight of the refugee. Apologies if I misunderstood that. The question starts to become more complex when we are confronted with why there has been an explosion in the numbers of refugees across the globe. Somewhere in the formula is powerful first world countries involving themselves in the affairs of less powerful nations. Sew to the wind and reap the whirlwind. What is a sustainable figure for refugee intake now that the rules have changed? How are other countries dealing with it? It is a major humanitarian problem on a grand scale. I have a real problem with it being made the central platform of an election. That is when the bullying and victimisation comes in to play. For politicians to tap into the perceived psyche of the populace and gain votes by promising to turn back the boats (or similar rationalisation) is the powerful playing god with the least powerful. That is bullying.
    student
    11th Jul 2013
    4:10pm
    All Hail oh Wiseone. What a speech!! You know what you are talking about. I agree wholeheartedly with "... Somewhere in the formula is powerful first world countries involving themselves in the affairs of less powerful nations ..."GREED. It isn't a simplistic argument and there is no sound answer, but I do wish people would show more compassion and understanding to people who, through no fault of their own, have to flee their homes and cultural land to survive.
    cdbstock
    4th Jul 2013
    1:19pm
    Asylum seekers clearly are not the poor & disadvantaged people in their country - they pay people smugglers more than many Australians have & I suspect many have overseas bank deposits. They have passports to fly to Malaysia or Indonesia, then discard the passports; they obviously have money for air fares; successful (most) asylum seekers then arrange family reunion migration
    digiom
    4th Jul 2013
    8:53pm
    Or they post their documents on to rellies/friends in Australia and pick up after they go through the silly system.

    4th Jul 2013
    1:49pm
    LOOK I'll solve the problem right now...ALL Australians can get in boats and row to Indonesia and leave Australia empty, except for the numpties in Canberra; then let all the buggers come here..how's that?
    LENYJAC
    5th Jul 2013
    8:04am
    PIXAPD DONT YOU MEAN NUMBNUTS IN CANBERRA???
    Grateful
    4th Jul 2013
    1:50pm
    Firstly, Tanya Plibersek was asked if she supported that 100% of the latest "refugees" were "economic refugees" and she simply replied hat she didn't think that was the case. She was denying the question, not "challenging" Bob Carr.
    And as much as I am most sympathetic with the acceptance of "genuine" refugees, there is no way that any country should condone what are nothing other than "queue jumpers" and they should be returned to the own country immediately.
    We have now increased our intake of "genuine" refugees from 12,000 to 20,000, so, that, possibly still not enough, is a most significant contribution to a very sad problem for the whole world. Keeping in mind that the intake of refugees in Australia, "genuine" or not, is still miniscule compared to what is happening in other countries, where what number come here in a whole year is often just a daily occurrence in many countries. Sadly, it has been a most successful "tool" to win votes, even elections,so, you had to expect that without bi-partisan support and no obvious "solution," both parties will end up with the lowest common denominator. This is NOT a unilateral problem and until we get get it off the political slum heap with vote scoring potential, then don't expect either party to "go soft" from now on.
    fey
    4th Jul 2013
    2:01pm
    I assume that Bes means the religious affiliation of Ed Husic when she writes of Labor having 'one of their own now in cabinet'. Is she aware that MP Husic was born in Sydney and his parents came from Bosnia?
    Surely most of us have ancestors who came from other countries for economic reasons, to have a better life for themselves and their children. How is it different now?
    Jurassicgeek
    4th Jul 2013
    2:08pm
    Anyone who tries to come by boat illegally is not a refugee! They are illegals and when picked up by the navy they destroy their ID and hope to get in.Mostly they succeed because of our piss weak immigration policy. They are illegals and should be treated as such and exported immediately. If they come in by plane they are on the next plane out! The onus should be on these people to prove who they are if they cant/wont then export them!
    Currently we spend billions trying to feed/maintain/prove these illegals and where has it gotten us ...bloody nowhere and a huge wast of money to boot! Export them!
    student
    11th Jul 2013
    4:18pm
    Firstly, 'they' are not boat people or illegals, I think you mean asylum seekers. We , as Australians have a legal and moral duty to accept asylum seekers.

    Are you saying we should create as new industry 'exporting illegals'?? I think you mean 'deport' not 'export'.
    tisme
    4th Jul 2013
    2:36pm
    if they are refugees how come they can afford to pay the people smugglers?? if Indonesia wont help with the problem then cut their funding. As long as the refugees know the govt will provide for them they will keep coming.
    JJ
    4th Jul 2013
    2:45pm
    How can it be proved as to whether they are genuine refugees or not? Of course they are not all economic, but neither are they all political refugees. How do we really tell the difference? I feel for those people who face persecution and worse in their own countries, as most people would do, but the fact is that we can't hope to cope with accomodating every single person who wants to come here. Australia doesn't have the necessary resources to do that without penalising our own citizens.
    bellasmum
    4th Jul 2013
    3:42pm
    I totally agree with you J.J...how do we know who is and isn't genuine?
    I believe that is the question most fair-minded Australians are asking
    My heart goes out to the innocent children held in detention centres and I grieve for those lost at sea attempting to sail to our shores but what is the solution?
    .
    student
    11th Jul 2013
    4:23pm
    maybe we could check their medical records after they have been here a few years just to make sure they have been traumatised. I believe most are genuine and deserve our help.
    tisme
    4th Jul 2013
    2:47pm
    they already get housing etc that aussies should get
    battiejl
    4th Jul 2013
    2:47pm
    Fly them all back without letting them set foot on Australian soil and then put a flotilla of boats between here and Indonesia and fire a shot across their bow - this will stop them

    Look after our own first - give them Australian homeless homes and the pensioners a decent living - most went to some war to keep Australia as it is
    Jurassicgeek
    4th Jul 2013
    2:53pm
    I wonder why the pollies havent thought of this...lol
    Penqueen1949
    4th Jul 2013
    3:24pm
    We pensioners can only dream of being treated as well by the federal government as these illegal aliens are.....
    student
    11th Jul 2013
    4:28pm
    you don't think the pensioners are treated very well?? Go and look at the old and disabled in the countries where the asylum seekers are fleeing.
    tisme
    4th Jul 2013
    2:49pm
    that's the problem once they step foot on aussie soil they will never go back the do gooders here civil rights lawyers will see to that. pity aussies don't get legal help wen they need it.
    Jurassicgeek
    4th Jul 2013
    2:54pm
    Dead right tisme! A bit like fleas on a dog ..hard to get rid of!!
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    3:03pm
    Ah, yes tisme. Lawyers and kind (but slightly misguided) souls who only want to have warm fuzzy feelings are the rub :( The 'lawyer business' must be thriving on this situation.
    fey
    4th Jul 2013
    3:01pm
    I just don't understand many of the comments here or why some of the writers feel so strongly about not wanting Australia to accept its responsibilities towards asylum seekers.
    Is it caused by fear? And if so, then of what? Or just not wanting to share our fantastic country and way of life?
    We should be proud to think that people from other countries seek to become Australians.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    3:06pm
    Not all and indeed, quite a lot of Australians who have worked hard all their lives are selfish enough to be concerned about their own living conditions and what the tax they paid all the working lives has/is getting them :( Some of them may have even help make Australia something to 'be proud' of. Just a thought.
    Penqueen1949
    4th Jul 2013
    3:21pm
    Herein lies the problem with these illegal boat people, they are NOT interested in becoming Australians and accepting our own ideals and culture. They are only here to slowly but surely take over our laws and enforce their own backward laws....
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    3:32pm
    Illegal? No! Boat People? No! Just refugees arriving by sea. Not that unusual in the annals of history. You have some remarkable information re their intentions and long term agenda. Could you reply to this post with your source please?
    student
    4th Jul 2013
    4:01pm
    fey, Olderwiser, heyybob I agree with your comments. It breaks my heart to read some of these posts that are full of vile and hatred, WE are the original 'boat people' and now some want to turn the hand of safety and security away from those trying to survive?? I am not so stupid as to say that ALL asylum seekers are really seeking asylum, but the majority are, and I feel we have a moral as well as a legal responsibility to help. To call all asylum seekers 'Muslim' is wrong and inflames fear and hatred towards asylum seekers.

    It is our international and moral duty to help asylum seekers.

    Olderwiser, I will be most interested to see the sources of the vile and vindictive posts re: (the source of) their (asylum seekers) intentions and long term agenda. I'll bet no one answers :)
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    4:06pm
    Other than talkback radio
    Nan Norma
    4th Jul 2013
    7:59pm
    OK Olderwiser, Right now I have some of those 'original' Australians, one who is sick, living in a tent next door because they are homeless. Their relatives already have a full house of another family that are homeless. Across the street, a new refugee family has moved into a four bedroom Qld housing house. This is where the problem lies. How would you feel if you were the one having to live in a tent.
    Of course there is resentment. In the past, apart from the Vietnamese, all the other migrants, Greek, Italian, British, etc were invited to come. The Vietnamese have proved to be good workers and certainly not not tried to indoctrinate us into their religion. Too many Austalians are really struggling at the moment.
    battiejl
    4th Jul 2013
    3:04pm
    Tell them to styay and fight for their own freedom and bring our boys home
    MsAquarius
    4th Jul 2013
    3:33pm
    WHAT ??? It's taken them 4 years to wake up to the fact that the boat people are "economic migrants" The fact is that the Labour Govt has processed thousands of them over the last 4 years and given them the green light to remain here and then telling us they were all asylum seekers. Now all the Labour politicians are singing the same song "economic migrants" to appear to be taking a tougher stance. Do you smell an election coming on ?
    student
    4th Jul 2013
    4:03pm
    MsAquarius, and where do you propose the Government sends those NOT refugees??
    Fairgo
    4th Jul 2013
    4:10pm
    Yes, our government has been too soft, they opened the gates, laid out the red carpet and basically said, "Come on down". Furthermore it was Mr Rudd who did this after the Howard government managed to hold these illegal queque jumpers at bay, so what makes you think he will ever get firm and stop this expensive rort anytime soon? Oh, that's right, there's an election in the wind and Mr rudd wants us to forget his past and vote for his dysfunctional party of soft-shelled, spineless crabs. Those boats have been flocking to our shores with 100 illegals a day since Julia announced the election date, for they fear this lucrative opportunity may come to an end after the election. These queque jumpers have cost our economy so much and will continue to do so while we accommodate them, feed them, give them mobile telephones, pay them $10,000 to return home only to reappear on another boat for another ex gratia hand out. These people have more dollars spent on them than our frail aged looking for adequate care or our homeless families who cannot afford rising rents. Get real and wake up Australia!!!

    4th Jul 2013
    4:37pm
    Why don't we work with indonesia to solve their problem of asylum seekers we have an intake of 20,000 a year from UN camps why not take the whole 20,000 fom Indonesia and in return ask Indonesia to stop those arriving at Jakarta airport without visas.
    digiom
    4th Jul 2013
    8:59pm
    They just issue visas on arrival and I would bet on the fact that money changes hands. They also have to have passports to get on their flights wherever they come from.
    lowflyer
    4th Jul 2013
    4:47pm
    Perhaps one might ask olderwiser the same question in say 15 years time and see if he has the same attitude, especially when he could be topped for speaking against the Ruling Party and their Shari Law!!!!!!
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    5:06pm
    Do you know something the rest of us don't know lowflyer? The attitudes we adopt to fine, upright mainline Islamic Australians citizens in the present will largely determine whether we will cultivate radicals in the future. I have sufficient faith in the processes in place and enough goodwill to my fellow Australians to work towards the future. If Australia falls apart at the seams it would probably be as a result of forsaking its Christian roots, not an ascendency of Islam. I am talking about principle-based living, not religion or church-going.
    battiejl
    4th Jul 2013
    5:04pm
    Hey student when you are under Shari Law!!!!!! come back and talk to me then - they now swear in parlament even pray before they go on the highwire on the MOLE (Channel 7) bringing their religion into a Christian country - again I say STAY IN THEIR OWN COUNTRY AND FIGHT FOR THEIR FREEDOM AND BRING OUR GUYS HOME
    MsAquarius
    4th Jul 2013
    5:16pm
    Well Student - I don't care where the Government sends them SO LONG AS THEY DO NOT SET FOOT ON AUSTRALIAN SOIL.
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    5:26pm
    Just what the original Australians said.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    6:53pm
    You reckon ?

    4th Jul 2013
    5:35pm
    Master Electricians Australia chief executive Malcolm Richards said it first raised safety concerns with the government during the scheme's initial rollout, and criticised the program for being implemented too fast without adequate safeguards.

    Ms Bishop said Labor was warned in writing about the risks to property and human life of rolling out the pink batts scheme so quickly.

    "And these warnings were ignored by the Rudd government," she told reporters in Perth.

    "Kevin Rudd must explain how it is that these warnings, which led in four instances to the loss of life, how it is that they were ignored."

    Tony Abbott recently resumed pressure on Mr Rudd to release warning letters about the "pink batts" scheme written to him in 2009 by then-environment minister, Peter Garrett.

    The Opposition Leader wrote to the newly restored Mr Rudd last week, noting that the home insulation program was a low point in his previous administration, costing four lives and leaving a trail of wreckage, including more than 220 house fires, more than 1000 potentially electrified roofs, 240,000 dangerous or sub-standard insulation jobs and a $1 billion cost blowout.

    Mr Abbott noted that the opposition's environment spokesman, Greg Hunt, had asked Mr Rudd in parliament on Thursday if he had apologised to those affected.

    Mr Hunt also asked Mr Rudd to release warning letters sent to him by Mr Garrett.

    Mr Rudd responded that any industrial death was a death too many. He said the four deaths had caused enormous grief to loved ones.

    4th Jul 2013
    5:37pm
    Sorry wrong blog
    Sylvia
    4th Jul 2013
    5:41pm
    Since when did the United Nations High Commission for Refugees run our country? I thought we had our own elected Governments to do this, take a good look at what is happening all around the World, I would love those who are genuine to agree to abide by our laws and honour our flag, a flag under which so many have died for our freedom and way of life, and then we may live together in this free country in Peace , sadly so many are not interested in that, only furthering the religion that has caused them to run in the first place, they should do what the western world did, stay and fight for their rights in those places ruled by despots, Europe has been trying to warn us, for God's sake listen. We are compassionate people here and respect others right to their own beliefs but keep them out of our Parliament, I am sure if they live here with out fear and brain washing they will think for themselves and agree it is a just system. Can they explain why they came in the first place if they are so set on changing our way of life? or is it what so many of us fear, they are invading us, and we are paying them to do it!

    4th Jul 2013
    5:43pm
    THE Rudd government is considering a crackdown on asylum-seekers arriving without identity papers - a problem addressed by the Coalition more than a year ago.

    It's understood Kevin Rudd is behind the policy shift that would see asylum-seekers disadvantaged in the refugee assessment process if they have deliberately discarded their travel documents.

    Foreign Minister Bob Carr flagged action on the issue today, saying the practice was allowing economic migrants to disguise themselves as asylum-seekers.

    "Now, one of the things very specifically we need to look at is the practice of people-smuggling - people-smugglers bringing into Australian waters, people on vessels who destroy their travel documents and who've rehearsed a story - each of them an identical memorised story," Senator Carr told ABC radio.

    "Now that is a challenge from Australian practice and it's got to be responded to."

    About 90 per cent of asylum-seekers arrive without travel documents, despite the majority having used a passport to enter Indonesia or Malaysia by air.

    But, until now, Labor has failed to address the issue.

    The opposition set out a comprehensive policy in June last year that would allow assessors to "draw an unfavourable inference" about a person's refugee claims if they concluded an asylum-seeker had deliberately ditched identity papers.

    "As a result of such acts, the applicant would be denied the benefit of the doubt on their refugee status determination," Tony Abbott said at the time.

    Opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison today accused the government of stealing Coalition policies.

    "This is nothing more than catch-up politics to pretend they will implement policies they don't believe in," he said.

    "On every occasion the Coalition has had to drag the Labor party kicking and screaming to realise the obvious about their border failures. This is just another example."

    Mr Rudd departed for Jakarta today, hosing down expectations of a breakthrough agreement with Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

    He told reporters in Canberra before he left that the meeting was about taking the "overall temperature" of the bilateral relationship, rather than finalising a deal to combat people-smuggling.

    "It will be completely wrong and I think disrespectful to the Indonesian president to create any expectation of any immediate change at all," Mr Rudd said of asylum-seeker policy.

    "Don't hold your breath for some sort of bright and breezy announcement out of Jakarta ... that everything is all fixed and back to normal."

    The recalled Prime Minister is anxious to nullify the Coalition's attacks on boatpeople, foreshadowing tough new measures to weed out and reject economic migrants posing as asylum-seekers.

    He admitted the government during his previous stint as Prime Minister had failed to respond to changed circumstances that resulted in a surge in boat arrivals, and declared he was considering options to tackle the problem.

    "There is nothing set in stone with immigration policy or asylum-seekers policy," he told the ABC's 7.30 program.

    "We constantly have to adjust our policy against circumstances. Mr Howard did that in 2001, 2004, 2007. We began to adjust in 2009-10. And, I'm open to adjustments in the future."

    4th Jul 2013
    5:44pm
    Rudd adopts more coalition policies six years later
    Fred
    4th Jul 2013
    6:17pm
    Any person who enters this country without a visa, or overstays their visa is committing an offence and should they be allowed to stay they should NEVER be given Citizenship. anyone assisting people to break our laws should also be given some form of penalty.
    Those who arrive without papers are taking advantage and should be kept in detention until they can produce some ID This should be their responsibility not Australia's.
    Until there are penalties they will keep coming.
    We should be helping those who go through the correct channels not the wealthy seeking a better life.

    The greens and their friends think we should take them all. When do they think enough is enough 50,000, 500,000, a Million?
    Over 90% of those who arrived in the last 5 years have never worked, how many can we support all these people?
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    7:04pm
    It would be a valid question to put to the Greens and their Friends, wouldn't it ? Not unreasonable at all really, especially considering the manner in which the number of boats are increasing :( SOMEONE should ask them to put a number that we can absorb/assimillate/assist/etc etc ......because there MUST be a limit, surely. We set a number per year, via the regular/normal channels and there must have been a reason for doing that !!!?!?? SURELY.
    Fairgo
    4th Jul 2013
    6:18pm
    Australia used to be a nation offering a fair go, now it favours noisy minorities because it's easier to give them what they want than to deny them their unreasonable abnormal demands, meanwhile the aged whose numbers fought and died on foregn battlefields, pioneered this nation to make it prosperous are neglected, young families are without employment and housing because they cannot afford the rent etc. The Rudd - Gillard governments have raided the national savings and spent monies we haven't got on many failed 'good ideas' that proved to be not such good ideas and turned our nation into a basket case. Meanwhile, we are still forking out $millions looking after illegal immigrants who have jumped the queques to spend some time at the Christmas Island Hilton, or the Wickham Point Novotel before being resettled in scarce community housing that have pushed up rents so our own cannot afford them. Hows that fair?
    fey
    4th Jul 2013
    6:51pm
    Australia a 'basket case'! Please tell me when that happened?
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    7:07pm
    A 'basket case' for some that don't deserve to be in that situation. How's that ? Is that more acceptable ??
    Davo
    4th Jul 2013
    6:58pm
    We have too many now NO more what about the australian homeless and the elderly give them the money that is been spent on the so called refugees if they can afford to pay to come here they are not penny less.

    4th Jul 2013
    6:58pm
    David

    Funny how your concern is ONLY now evident.

    This sort of ill considered ill will has been the bread and butter of the liberal party. In fact it was 'created' as a racial issue by the Libs. The war monger, little man Howard got re-elect on 'babies overboard' lies and then proceeded to promote racism, causing Australia's first racial riots in Cronulla.

    Funny how the Corporate (foreign) Owned Media tell us that it is brilliant of the liberal party to quell the 'dreaded' 'evil' boat people but if labor does the same it is all of a sudden dreadful.

    I have always said that ALL the Refugees that have come into Australia wouldn't even fill the MCG and represent little or no threat to Australia and that TRUE Australians would always put out a helping hand to those in need.

    Also that the problem of people entering Australia is more prevalent with those visiting or coming in on 457 visas and staying illegally or simply those coming through other methods.

    EXAMPLE:
    Six, white South Africans come into Australia, create a $2 Australian Company which then Sponsors them into Australia and employs them, pays their travel costs, pays for food for their family, pays for their rents at expensive places (the Company gets a tax deduction, it is an exempt Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT), so the SthAfrican's don't have to show it as income and the Company doesn't have to pay any FBT).

    To do the above they did have to start their little business which actually fed off the mining industry, replacing or competing against Australian companies,etc. Within 18-24months ALL of those that were sponsored by this $2 company are now official residents of Australia. They brought in NO money, NO skills, NO business assets and took jobs off Australians.....

    I would definitely prefer Refugees - they are grateful, they work hard, they do the work that most Australians don't want to do and are generally very good citizens. These 'particular' South Africans effectively bleached the system and got every conceivable benefit and used every conceivable loophole and haven't done one thing for this country but to EXTRACT from it.

    So, back to David's apparent NEW views on Refugees..... where were you DAVID when the Libs were spewing their venom and lies about refugees, I didn't hear or see your discontent about how they were treated back then.
    battiejl
    4th Jul 2013
    7:02pm
    And where are you from Mussitate
    Anonymous
    4th Jul 2013
    9:29pm
    Bit of a mix match battiejl.

    5th generation on one side and 3rd generation on the other side, so am part of the older immigrant family groups.

    Yourself battiejl?
    katemar
    4th Jul 2013
    7:55pm
    Every year we prop up the poorer countries with donations of million of dollars including Indonesia - Yes I believe we should do that if it goes to the right people. I didn't know until recently that Indonesia has their own coal mines and that is where we are also buying our oil from - so I guess we are getting it for a song the same as China is getting our gas for practically next to nothing while us Australians pay absorbent prices. Indonesia has no intentions of stopping boat people if they were concerned they would have stop them when they first started leaving their shores. It is all a joke the politicians must think we are all stupid. There are many people that would like to come to this country from all around the world, but no they are not wanted - yet we are taking people that can well afford to pay airfares to Indonesia and pay big money to come on dangerous boats - when they get their citizenship- some of them head back to their own country and run their own business - they just travel back and forward - I wouldn't call them boat people. They are people with a purpose - what I see I don't like. Kat
    moke
    4th Jul 2013
    7:57pm
    When I came to Australia as a child migrant We were sent out to the bush and taught how to be Australian and live a good life. If we must have these people why not build large places in the bush and let these so called refugees learn how Australia really is and not give them many advantages that the low income Australians don't even have a chance of enjoying
    Anonymous
    4th Jul 2013
    9:40pm
    I have heard people's first hand stories of being sent out bush as slave labour when they were young.

    The persons I spoke to were orphans and I thought it was horrible what they had to endure.

    The cockeys that they were required to live with and work for, weren't very nice and tried the 'upper class' rubbish on them, treating them like insignificant servants, with whom they could do what they wanted with.

    They were terrified in the bush because they were city folk and when they heard the crows, sillily thought it was a baby crying and were upset by it all.

    Anyway, there were many stories told that were very interesting and some rather disgusting. Nearly all of those I spoke to, though, had no problems with refugees and would have been upset if told that refugees would be sent out into the bush, in view of what had happened to them.
    Fiona
    4th Jul 2013
    9:01pm
    I have friends who are post war migrants and they say that when they came out they had to be sponsored by a relative and find a job as soon as possible. They didn't get any handouts by the government so they feel a bit annoyed about the recent ones coming out.
    If it was announced that anyone coming without papers couldn't bring out family members perhaps that would discourage destroying them and speed up the process.
    Pardelope
    4th Jul 2013
    9:10pm
    There are many thousands (if not millions) of people taking part in mass migrations throughout the world. Very few countries do not have problems with people entering across their borders.

    The numbers we see here in Australia are tiny by comparison - but are very important to the future of Australia. The reasons are the same as they have always been - people seeking a better life. Their aspirations may range from seeking safety and survival, to seeking a better education and lifestyle.

    Australia cannot take enough people to make even a dent in the numbers involved. We need to consider carefully the type of lifestyle future generations will experience if we over-populate and destroy our very fragile land and ocean resources.

    We need to support other countries in solving their problems - be they from over-population, natural disasters, political unrest, or unachievable expectations. We also need (and should have the right) to select newcomers who will assimilate and become valuable citizens. If they fail to do this after a trial period, they should be replaced by others who will (as was done with migrants after WWII).

    Australia (like the UK) is seen as a "land of milk and honey". This is due to a number of factors e.g. word-of-mouth stories about free housing, pensions, unemployment support, slack legal systems, and freedom to do what you wish. Many people overseas think that Australia is a large, green, empty country with unlimited resources (largely due to what they see on TV or what they hear from people smugglers).

    I think we could deter many people from coming here if they were shown films of the reality - leaky boats, drought-stricken cattle, dust storms, miles of emptiness, Aboriginal fringe camps, people sleeping rough in cities, queues of destitute people at soup kitchens, patients on trolleys in passageways, etc etc. Our Government(s) should pay for prime time TV series and ads (in the local language) showing "the real Australia".

    Years ago, I met a group of private pilots from Indonesia who had come to WA to take part in a BP Air Trial going out beyond Kalgoorlie and Leonora. After flying from Perth to Narambeen, they were so terrified of the long distances of "nothing", they begged to join other competitors in other aircraft in case they got lost. They said that they had no idea that Australia had only a narrow strip of green land and the vast majority was desert. At that time, Indonesian school atlasses showed Australia in green and labelled as "South Irian" (they may still do so).

    Other "ten pound Poms", said they felt they had been misled badly by the Australian and British Governments - because they were only shown films and posters of wealthy, affluent Australians in large houses and on sandy beaches. The reality of Nissan huts, migrant camps, low wages, high rentals, long distances, and isolation was a terrible shock.

    People who arrive by "back door" routes or methods - or without papers - should be returned immediatly to the place they last departed from. Those who may be in actual danger should be placed in work camps - as was done with post WWII migrants - but for a set period of, say, two or five years - with the warning that any failure to assimilate (law breaking etc) will result in their whole family being sent back to where they came from.

    The "elephant in the room" (which no-one wants to talk about) is the fact that we humans are eating ourselves out of house and home. Our planet is under stress, and humans (like any other animal) will seek to survive by seeking better prospects. If we can't provide those better prospects for all - we better accept the inevitable.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    9:42pm
    Pardelope....appreciate your post and agree totally.
    Anonymous
    6th Jul 2013
    4:26pm
    Good well reasoned out post.

    4th Jul 2013
    9:18pm
    Whoa, my comment about Bob CARR being a total tosser, has been removed.....why?

    I was in a hurry but am sure I pressed the post comment button.

    Bob CARR is a public figure and I therefore am able to state my PERSONAL OPINION of his performance as Minister for Foreign Affairs.

    Bob CARR is insensitive and arrogant, thinks he is part of the upper echelons of the intelligentsia and restricted by his very strong personal religious views. Hence, in my opinion he is TOTALLY the wrong person to be the Minister of Foreign Affairs. PM Rudd should separate this person from his throne, as soon as possible because he can and will simply be an embarrassment to this posting.

    Is that better!!!
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    9:39pm
    Ho Ho Mussi :) My response was deleted also, so I'll repeat it :)....Codswallop !
    Anonymous
    4th Jul 2013
    9:49pm
    heyyybob
    What he is a cod and you want to wallop him.... no, wouldn't believe it, not from you.

    Seriously, you like what this guy does and how he does it? I find some of the things he says and does quite offensive and when I look at things from the point of view of the country he is exchanging dialogue with..... then I get rather horrified.

    Always welcome another opinion.... tell me what you find that is good about him, particularly as foreign affairs minister and I will try and keep an open mind.
    heyyybob
    4th Jul 2013
    10:16pm
    LOL. You described Australia's Foreign Minister as .... a total tosser, insensitive, arrogant, having very strong personal religious views, totally the wrong person for the job, an embarrassment, horriffying, offensive etc etc. Welcome another opinion ?? I think not ;) I'm so overcome by your assertions I have 'a touch of the vapours' and so shall retire from this discussion :D Good night to all the Happy Little Vegemites. God Bless. Ooooops !
    Anonymous
    4th Jul 2013
    10:19pm
    heyyybob

    You have generated two very big chuckles and I now can't get the grin off my face.

    Thanks ..... goodnight and very good wishes..... sorry about the vapours.
    GH
    4th Jul 2013
    9:48pm
    David Fallick. You have asked three questions and hit one of the most sensitive nerves in the country. It is also a topic which is a litmus test of where people are coming from. The wide range of responses in this short blog is intriguing, revealing and disturbing. It would appear to me that we are a country divided by ignorance and misinformation.

    Is the refugee review too soft?
    As a layman who had a refugee live in my home for a year and who studied refugee law then took on his case for residency, I would have to conclude that the Tribunal is tough, fair and extremely thorough. There are many dedicated, compassionate overworked, underpaid refugee lawyers out there who believe in their clients, believe in justice, believe in humanity and believe in the Tribunal. The tribunal is overworked and understaffed, but they are in most instances, fair. There are no easy cases and no refuge earns their citizenship without blood sweat and tears. Those who are accepted are citizens of extraordinary character.

    Can the politics of boats sink even lower?
    It is sinking like a hapless refugee boat and many concerned Australians have to stand by watching this issue become the key platform of the election. Rudd has changed coats from the compassionate prime minister, to the minister who is so determined to topple Abbot that he is prepared to disarm him on this issue by joining him (making allowances for semantic games). Once the two parties are on the same side of the fence the boat has sunk. I see Carr's comments as irresponsible, ignorant and inaccurate. Expect them to return to haunt him and do considerable damage to the party cause. I felt for Tanya Plibersek having to wear his pathetic stance. We would do well to listen to Malcolm Fraser who is able to speak his mind, unfettered by political ambition and vote grabbing party unity.

    Do you agree with the government’s new tougher stance on those arriving by boat?
    It is actually a weaker, spineless stance, distancing itself from our international responsibility towards refugees. We have already imprisoned hundreds of children and want to get even tougher. That is bullying and weakness. Bullies present as tough but they are expedient and weak. How can I be expected to agree with this 'tough stance' as the powerless become non-persons and political pawns.

    The only voice that refugees have are those who will speak on their behalf. Mine is one small voice endeavouring to do its bit. The fact remains that refugees are not going to go away. They are part of a greater problem largely of our own making and turning the boats away is not a solution. Defining them as something else is burying our heads in the sand. There is no simple solution. A viable solution will be heavily criticised and undoubtedly unpopular. That is what tough policy is all about. Doing what is right, not what is politically expedient or popular. That requires real leadership.
    Anonymous
    4th Jul 2013
    10:05pm
    Olderwiser

    Excellent comment..... especially "I see Carr's comments as irresponsible, ignorant and inaccurate". I even agree with your comments about Rudd doing the pragmatic political thing.

    However, the group that is to blame the most for the racial hatred promoted by John Howard is the Corporate (foreign) Owned media.

    All you need to do is envisage how the public would have reacted if, instead of vilification and demonisation that was spewed forth by our Corporate Media, the public were subjected to stories of the plight and experiences of refugees. The horrors that most of these people had experienced. The reaction would have been very, very different.

    I am rather disgusted with Carr's unprofessional outburst because I too know of the VERY stringent process that is in place when assessing refugees. Carr is really, really out of order.
    tisme
    4th Jul 2013
    10:35pm
    charity begins at home unfortunately the world media etc is only interested in what the aussie govt does to the illegals not the way they treat aussies.

    4th Jul 2013
    11:49pm
    Olderwiser you are obviously a compassionate person and doing good work which we all can only thank you for . But I don't see it as racist or anti Islam to question the current state of our asylum seeker policies . You are obviously dealing with a situation that exists after the asylum seekers arrive . So I won't question that except I find Labor policy of releasing asylum seekers into the community but not allowing them to work to be insane
    my question is that we cannot take all the asylum seekers in the world so we have to limit the number to one that is acceptable to the general population
    We have set that number at 20,000 UN sanctioned people . This is of course in addition to the 200,000 or so immigrants and 457 visa holders and foreign students . So I don't think we can accuse Australia of not being welcoming or racists
    But they do get upset when in addition to these numbers people are seen to self select to come to Australia outside of our official programmes and seem to have the means to do so.
    I made a suggestion earlier that if we were to use our 20,000 UN program to empty the camps in Indonesia and in return ask them to police their own visas at Jakarta airport wouldn't this be the most humane way to stop the human trafficking .
    GH
    5th Jul 2013
    12:19am
    I appreciate your gracious attitude Pete. A couple of things in response.
    If the number of refugees worldwide is increasing then we need to re-visit the quota formula. I would be interested in seeing reliable research on the viability of population growth in Australia and a realistic projection of the number of migrants (including refugees) we could sustain. Historically we have relied on the intake of migration in its different forms to build our economy. I suspect that we would discover that we still have a lot of room to move. Re the flood of refugees coming to Australia - any demographic study of refugee movements will reveal a dispersion in many different directions for a variety of reasons. It is scaremongering to suggest that we will be swamped with refugees. This is a damn hard country to reach and refugees tend to trickle in. Final thing. The matter or human trafficking is quite a different issue and a major smokescreen. The traffickers are entrepreneurs and sad opportunists who exploit the plight of desperate refugees, in the same class as respectable corporations that make their profits at the expense of impoverished Bangladeshis for example. Trafficking only happens because refugees exist.
    Anonymous
    5th Jul 2013
    6:28am
    Scott Morrison, The Australian, Tuesday:

    THERE were 12 million refugees globally when Howard dealt with the problem a decade ago, compared with 10.5 million today, and . in 2002, when no boats arrived, the number of global asylum applications increased and was 22 per cent higher than today.

    5th Jul 2013
    12:01am
    Mussitate your postings are ridiculous your continual ranting about the foreign media and in particular news ltd has no basis in fact .
    News ltd owns no Tv stations or radio stations
    It has an interest in Foxtel along with Telstra in has an interest in Sky news and sport
    In Sydney it owns a newspaper and Fairfax the other
    In Melbourne it owns a newspaper and Fairfax the other
    Nationally it owns a newspaper and Fairfax the other
    In Canberra Fairfax owns the only newspaper
    In Perth WA news owns the only newspaper
    In Adelaide news owns the only newspaper
    In Brisbane news owns the only newspaper
    Channel nine is owned by foreign interests
    News. Corp is a public company with many Australian shareholders and the Murdoch family hold 12 per cent

    5th Jul 2013
    10:41am
    Ending the WHITE AUSTRALIA POLICY and introduction of multiculturalism .....ended this country

    NO boat people would have gotten through the door under the White Australia Policy
    Anonymous
    5th Jul 2013
    11:03am
    I was a boat person under the white Australia policy
    Anonymous
    6th Jul 2013
    4:30pm
    I suspect a 10 pound 'Pom" Pete you're being TIC
    Anonymous
    7th Jul 2013
    9:49am
    I dare say that when the Aboriginals saw the first fleet, they pointed and said ' boat people' but what a blessing...they were white men.
    tisme
    5th Jul 2013
    10:45am
    the Indonesian govt wouldn't want to see a stop to the boats because its less for them to worry about if they even do.

    7th Jul 2013
    9:52am
    The boats leave from Indonesia, then they can go back to Indonesia...the Indonesian Govt is solely responsible....none of this BS that they are just a transit country, the boats leave from there.
    GH
    7th Jul 2013
    11:52am
    The real problem may not be the refugees but ill-informed Australians who have no understanding of what it is to be a refugee. It is a problem to those who do not know how to respond to the tragedy. It is a problem to those who propose simplistic solutions like turning the boats back. Get the facts right. Most asylum seekers fly into Australia in total safety. To say that "the boats leave from Indonesia, then they can go back to Indonesia" is like saying to the hundreds of thousands who fled Europe after WW2 to other parts of the world (including Australia) to go back to the countries that were the stepping stones as they fled to their eventual chosen country of refuge. That's not how it happens. This is the sort of comment that rabid talk-back radio hosts come out with. Please don't respond to this reply until you have at least read the following article. It is one of many which lie behind the screen in front of you.
    http://asetts.vacau.com/Documents/statistics%20and%20facts%20about%20asylum%20seeker%20and%20refugee%20issues.pdf
    Written by those who witness first hand the effects of trauma and torture on refugees.
    battiejl
    7th Jul 2013
    3:25pm
    AGAIN I SAY !!!!!!!!!!

    TELL THEM TO STAY IN THEIR OWN COUNTRY AND FIGHT FOR THEIR FREEDOM !!!!!!

    AND BRING OUR GUYS AND GIRLS HOME

    WE HAVE LOST 40 GOOD AUSTRALIANS AND GOD KNOWS HOW MANY ARE INJURED, LOST LIMBS ETS - THOSE FIGURES ARE NEVER RELEASED.

    7th Jul 2013
    2:56pm
    THey are not refugees,they are economic asylum seekers,opportunistic,business people,refugees live in dirty squalid camps without clothes or food or medicine,refugees do not have a bank account,gold chains,computers,mobile phones,passports,should i go on,a refugee is not from Indonesia via a visa and air ticket from a country with an International airport that they have access to.
    They are queue jumping asylum seekers who want an easy retirement in the sun,and a Gov'mint house,and free medical,and big new Mosques they can go to and know they can freely discuss terrorism,female genital mutilation etc etc....
    wake Up,you are falling asleep again.
    GH
    7th Jul 2013
    3:31pm
    Did you read the article?
    battiejl
    7th Jul 2013
    3:49pm
    No not interested in you so called do gooders - TELL THEM TO GO BACK TO WHERE THEY CAME FROM THEY ARE NOT WANTED HERE AND RUDD CAN GO WITH THEM
    wally
    7th Jul 2013
    6:04pm
    My worry about Bob Carr is that he will switch from the Senate to the House of Reps. and replace Rudd as Prime Minister if Labor wins the election. As a member of the NSW Right faction of the NSW Labor Party (who were instrumental in removing 2 Labor Prime Ministers). This might not be as far fetched as it might first appear. Carr and his successors in NSW created a "Carr-wreck) that state is still trying to straighten out. One can only wonder what Bob Carr and his ministers would do to our country should he ever get into the Lodge as a resident.
    katemar
    7th Jul 2013
    9:55pm
    There are two many factions in the Labour Party - Politics is all about doing the right thing for this country. We don't need a left and a right wing we just want a Labour party without all the so call trimmings. I can't believe we have a country Labour Party it is all too ridiculous for words- waste of taxpayers money. From what I can see the whole Labour party in NSW needs a complete overhaul. It has just become a job for the boys. NSW has never recovered from the Olympic Games- people have short memories - it cost millions to put those games on - They were never ever truthful about the real figures and us gullible taxpayers have been paying for it. We are being ripped off right left and centre you only have to see how high the cost of living is compared with overseas countries and we are also contributing to the boat people - when it is going to stop.
    Boof
    8th Jul 2013
    4:58pm
    The people from Sri Lanka are economic refugees for a start. The war is over, there and they have resorts and beaches equivalent to our own. Look at the Captain and crew exposed by the "Current Affairs Program" on the ABC, living the life of luxury in Our Government Housing and running businesses in their own country. It's a joke.
    battiejl
    8th Jul 2013
    5:52pm
    I agree - we are giving Australia away for nothing - soon we will be living in Tasmania if we want to live a Christian life - SEND THEM BACK
    from the nanny state
    10th Jul 2013
    12:22pm
    Fully agree.... SEND THEM BACK ....never to return.
    Maggie ( SA )
    8th Jul 2013
    10:23pm
    “Time To End The Lies About Refugees”
    http://polliter.com/?p=1447

    Fact: Refugees often flee without papers; papers get you killed. Or you may never have had papers. You might not even know

    what the hell a passport is: why would you – you were too damn poor to go to Disneyland, you worked sixteen hours a day, 7

    days a week why would you even need a passport? Maybe you were captured, tortured: maybe your family was murdered, their

    bodies decomposing in a mass grave, while you, miraculously escaped. Maybe you were almost killed, yourself, or pack raped.

    Maybe your children are gone: missing, dead, who knows? That is the plight of the refugee. Illegal immigrants have their

    papers, they use them to jump from country to country on board planes and boats. The papers are authentic – very hard to travel

    anywhere, nowadays, on forged papers. Impossible, actually. So, when the illegal immigrant left (not fled) they could be

    positively authenticated as the person on their papers. But, somehow, between the fishing village where they made their final

    instalment and the Australian naval vessel that picks them up, like a cab, those papers disappear. Poof! Gone. The Big Lie is

    they fled too hastily to get them: or they would be killed under their own identity. Well, we KNOW that’s not true: they crossed

    borders, boarded planes, went through a maze of customs checks, visa checks, passport checks, airline checking desks.
    Yep, they had their papers, right until they entered the land of the Big Juicy Lie.
    That’s the truth about immigration, and if some scumbag tries to tell you you’re a pig or a racist because you will not accept their

    fabulist imagination, tell them to take a hike. In Somalia.
    tisme
    8th Jul 2013
    10:27pm
    look at England , they are as we will be
    tisme
    8th Jul 2013
    10:28pm
    we have a responsibility to asylum seekers?? I see someone said?? what about a responsibility to our own doesn't charity begin at home anymore
    Maggie ( SA )
    8th Jul 2013
    10:34pm
    The plight of refugees is as desperate and as dire as it was in decades past. But refugees, true refugees, are not what we see. True refugees wait in desperate, awful, barbaric camps in Pakistan, Iran and throughout Africa, where hundreds of thousands live in absolute misery and destitution – waiting, hoping, after making the long walks through war torn lands, losing everything save the clothes on their backs, they wait, hope for a chance in a new land.
    And that wait can be long. Years. Children grow up in these camps. These are real refugees.
    Illegal immigrants are not refugees. This is the great lie of our time. And those that have stolen the word refugee to label these grubs, to confect a false sense of desperate plight upon these people, are only too eager to perpetuate the lie.
    GH
    9th Jul 2013
    12:02am
    Refreshing to read informed comment Maggs. Australians risk being too insular. We may holiday overseas but most of us don't travel. Once you have seen first hand the desperate lives that many live you can never be the same.
    'Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.' – Mark Twain
    katemar
    9th Jul 2013
    12:45am
    What Maggs has written is very true but I wouldn't label anyone a grub. I have seen first hand what happens to our illegal visitors when they are assimilated into Australian society. They are set up in a home or unit with the compliments of the Australian Taxpayer and are provided with money to buy their essentials. within a matter of weeks they have a car- So you can't tell me that these people are genuine refugees. Where are they getting the money from. I am not saying that all of them have these luxuries but to see what it happening makes one wonder. We have Australian citizens that can't afford a car and don't have a roof over their head. I was around although young when we had refugees after the second world war - they were genuine refugees and some of them had to live in tin huts that were not lined and they weren't driving around in cars within weeks of arriving here. Australia has one big problem - I am sure if we went to their country we would have to abide by their laws - if they are to stay here they should have to abide by ours.
    katemar
    9th Jul 2013
    1:24am
    PINK BATTS; Between the refugee saga and the pink batts I am getting a little tired of it all.
    I thought I would let you know that I had the free pink bats installed it was the best gift that the Government has given to me- Being a pensioner ( before you think anything else) I worked all my life since I left school at 16 - paid taxes in all that time like all taxpayers of this country- I have helped in some little way to make this country what it is today. I retired a little earlier as I nursed my late husband with cancer. I didn't knock a gift back as we don't get them handed on a platter very often. Actually when I think about it is the first gift that I have ever received from the Government except for my pension. Since my husband died I have done many years of voluntary work so I don't feel one bit guilty about receiving the Pink Batts. The government let the contract for the pink batts out to reputable contractors - It was the contractors who sub contracted to other people and that is where it went wrong. But getting something for nothing I made sure that I was home and told them where my exhaust fans and down lights were. So it made the job easier for the people installing the batts - If everyone had have done what I did there most probably would not have been the deaths that occurred - The government didn't force people to have pink batts installed. So everyone has to take some responsibility for what happened.
    Sen.Cit.90
    9th Jul 2013
    3:23pm
    Regarding the Free Pink Bats; I too had a very successful installation and very grateful. I'd had quotes before the scheme and couldn't afford them.
    Sen.Cit.90
    9th Jul 2013
    3:18pm
    This video is scary not so much for me at my age. Heaven help the younger Aussie if this is allowed to happen here. I hope you are able to download it.

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=07b_1368058553
    battiejl
    9th Jul 2013
    3:38pm
    God help us - it is hard to beleive that this is happening in a CRISTIAN country - why don't they just go back to where theyy came from and leave us in peace

    That is a Bloody frightening video
    battiejl
    9th Jul 2013
    3:40pm
    Sorry Christian Country
    from the nanny state
    10th Jul 2013
    9:47am
    Yes... back to basic morals and goodwill to all humanity ... NOW that is the christian way.....
    Even if you are an atheist in Australia .... decent Australians still live peacefully under the present law.
    1 law only ... we don't want Sharia law here EVER.....there is only 1 allegiance to the laws of this country.... and that's the present system.

    10th Jul 2013
    1:56am
    battiejl & maggs & whoever else this applies to

    If you are an example of a christian people, thank goodness there are more and more atheists in Australia each year.

    How ungracious and unAustralian your attitude is.

    Atheists have put up with christians imposing THEIR beliefs into our laws and banging on about their particular brand of religion for decades and decades and now because other religions are entering our shores, you spit poison, racism and hate.

    Way to go!.... nothing like religious compassion and caring to brighten up your day.

    Atheists are a lot more tolerant of all religions but after listening to you lot, I think it would be preferable if ALL religion was BANNED from Australia.

    Back to basic morals and goodwill to ALL humanity.
    fey
    10th Jul 2013
    10:09am
    Well said Mussitate. I also have had enough of people, who in many cases only attend a church for weddings and funerals, insisting that it is their Christian beliefs that fuels the hatred and fear of those who are different from them. It is time they admitted to being mean-spirited racists, stopped listening to the shock jocks and started to think for themselves.
    Sen.Cit.90
    10th Jul 2013
    1:34pm
    Back to basic morals and goodwill to ALL humanity. As written in the Bible,
    Matthew 6.7 i.e., known as "The Lords Prayer"
    Pardelope
    10th Jul 2013
    3:56pm
    Hear hear Mussitate!
    tisme
    10th Jul 2013
    6:23pm
    there is only one thing wrong with religion...........people


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