Mark Latham: Slash immigration for affordable housing

By Leith van Onselen

Mark Latham last night entered the housing affordability debate, questioning why politicians on both sides are ignoring the role of mass immigration in pushing-up home prices, which is shutting younger Australians out of the housing market. From Sky News:

“[Housing affordability] is all about supply and demand. It’s not rocket science. The problem with extra supply in Sydney is the urban sprawl, the lack of infrastructure, the wretched traffic jams a million miles from the city centre, people struggling to get anywhere near for their schools, shops their employment.  So, supply has the problem of sprawl”.

“[But] you’ve got to do something about demand. And whether we like it or not – and the two parties have got consensus about a Big Australia – the driver of housing demand in Sydney is immigration. The 200,000 a year plus immigration program – add to that the refugee program – that’s the driver of demand. And unless you address that, you can have all of the housing bonds, press conferences and forums that you like – and sort of puffy stuff in the media – and you won’t get a solution. So, break the consensus about Big Australia, slash the immigration program, drive down demand,  and finally you will have a sensible solution to housing affordability”.

“You won’t have to spend as much on infrastructure funding because the place is not sprawling as much. And the other benefit you get is environmental sustainability. It’s something The Greens used to talk about, but now they talk about 50,000 to 100,000 refugees – they are Big Australia as well”.

“So, there is real room here for a sensible solution based on cuts to immigration”.

Well done Mark Latham.

Since John Howard initially opened the immigration floodgates in 2003, Australia’s population has grown at nearly 2.5 times the OECD average (see next chart).

ScreenHunter_15563 Oct. 18 16.52

Sydney’s population is also projected to rise by 85,000 people per year to 6.4 million over the next 20-years – effectively adding another Perth to the city’s population:

ScreenHunter_15562 Oct. 18 15.29

Melbourne’s population is projected to balloon by nearly 75% over the next 35 years to more than 8 million people:

ScreenHunter_15632 Oct. 23 12.16

With the flood of new migrants projected to inundate Sydney and Melbourne, housing affordability will remain under immense pressure.

None of this is rocket science. So why are the three major political parties – the Coalition, Labor and the Greens – ignoring the population elephant?

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Comments

  1. I like Mark Latham because he is raw and direct. When he was at the apogee of his political career, the electorate wasn’t ready for it.

    I reckon that no (or soon) they might be. They’re certainly sick of mealy-mouthed distractions that have been passed off as political discourse in this country for the last decade.

    • Latham certainly someone who could raise the profile of a minor party if he chose to join one with common interests…

      • ErmingtonPlumbing

        Maybe Mark could lift the profile of the Sustainable Australia party by standing as a candidate for them.

        With his trademark, agressive bone breaking hand shakes and a preparedness to drop the “C bomb” when making a succinct point,…..Mark is just the Man to lift the media profile of this party with his blokey ways.

        Mark taking on 4 feminist single handedly!!!,…please reenter politics Mark.

        https://youtu.be/5ebNgV47tR4

      • ErmingtonPlumbing

        “Hanson is hanson in a suit”

        I think what proofy means to say Bendy is ” like a Hanson in a Proper, turned up to work, Mans suit,…you know,… like Penny wears.

      • Quote “Maybe Mark could lift the profile of the Sustainable Australia party by standing as a candidate for them.”
        He’d be better off supporting One Nation for this issue, just as Dick Smith has done. One Nation will never government in their own right, but they have to ability to influence Government policy at the next election. Otherwise people will be discussing this issue for years and the damage will be a lot worse.

      • Screw that, still going Hansen. These politicians are all talk and as soon as they take office everythign changes. Latham is no different. Have no false confidence that he will bend and buckle to unions and then whatever lobby comes after that. He will resubscribe to big Australia and the show goes on. These people don’t deserve a second chance and especialyl not in minority parties. The minorities are the ones that stick to their guns good or bad. Latham is not that guy. He might do ok with a moderate party like Xenophon though. I prefer to keep Hansen and One Nation as a ‘North Korea solution’ for the major parties.

      • Come now EP. Mark Latham is a dickhead.That he is occasionally right makes him a dickhead who is occasionally right. The Liberals had his measure from day one as a liability not an asset to the ALP. Being all elbows and knees may impress at interfactional brawls but I think to the general public that sort of carrying on just looks like thuggery.

    • Strange Economics

      Cmon Gladys. Mention this if you want to address housing affordability.
      Say something useful – Other than saying “Land tax is not my preferred solution”

    • @Peachy “– I like Mark Latham because he is raw and direct.”

      Me too – – his was a political assignation – he was way ahead of his time.
      – – – and I enjoyed the way he squeezed John Cowards hand that time – -hilarious !

    • Yes, Peachy. Mark is absolutely right when he says:

      “So, break the consensus about Big Australia, slash the immigration program, drive down demand, and finally you will have a sensible solution to housing affordability”.

      “You won’t have to spend as much on infrastructure funding because the place is not sprawling as much. And the other benefit you get is environmental sustainability. “

  2. “The 200,000 a year plus immigration program” ah no, it is currently 182,200 people
    http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/[email protected]/mf/3101.0

    Supply is about to double as the death bust unfolds.
    http://demografixfromoz.blogspot.com.au/2015/11/our-looming-death-bust-part-2.html

    I also note that the ABS do not seem to be reporting permanent emigration. Mmmm
    http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/[email protected]/ProductsbyReleaseDate/568BCE24A5E5CEC5CA257774001ABE30?OpenDocument

  3. Humanitarian immigration intake only until education, health and environmental benchmarks are met and maintained for 12 months

    • No – absolutely not. Humanitarian intake is orchestrated by the UNHCR and we take our quota of Somalis and Sudanese -yet those are failed cultures over a period of 24 years. These are “welfaregees” and are big business for resettlement agencies contractors – as well as juicing demand for housing and debt with federal loan schemes. Add to this, their offspring terrorise with savage brutality akin to the dark ages, the local communities they displace public housing in. Take a tour of North Melbourne, Kensington and Flemington. This type of migration is not humanitarian – it is the depopulation of a failed state by a failed culture on an industrial scale never seen before. There are according to statics 65 million active alleged refugees worldwide , with that number rising exponentially annually. Notting good comes from this humanitarian programme – except being able to say it’s “moral” or “good”. It isn’t when these alleged refugees are a danger to every host society they inhabit – St. Paul’s, MInnesotta, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Lewistan, Maine, Melbourne – the doors must be very firmly shut against them. Rather quadruple the $80m we find the UNHCR with there $5B annual budget.

      • 65m is only 1% of the globes population. It at all surprising that at least that many people have found themselves in a place they have to flee.

        I have no problem with tripling the humanitarian intake. Tomorrow. Slash 100,000 from the other Intake quotas at the same time.

        You say “Notting good comes from this humanitarian programme – except being able to say it’s “moral” or “good”” – well, you are free to piss off to China (or Sudan or Somalia!) if being moral and good is “nothing” to you…. for most others it’s important.

      • Now now, that’s racist! Now hand over your car to these troubled youths! Choose hope!

        On a serious note, you are quite correct, the world is overpopulated and becoming more so (even though it may be at a sublinear trend – there you go Robert!). We’re going to add billions more (another China and India and then some). Choosing love will simply not be an option. A rational response from a nation state is to look after their own, not all go down on the ship together!

      • Ronin8317MEMBER

        They are also dumping 12,000 Syrian refugees in Australia , most of them in one single suburb in Sydney (Fairfield). That’s not going to help with integration.

        Before calling people racist, Deng Adut, a prominent South Sudanese born Australian lawyer, says troublemakers should be deported.

        http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2016/s4424547.htm

      • I have no first hand experience. However, during the period 2000 – 2005 we lived in Bristol next door to a police sergeant. We used to go out for a beer occasionally. She used to say that the worst criminals in Bristol were the Sudanese & Somalis. A gang culture worse than the anything the rest of the poor parts of Bristol put together could offer.. She hated them like poison. Other than that you could tell she was a basically compassionate person, the way she talked about (the many) dead & dying she had seen lying on the motorways after yet another pile up. A bad day was when she had to shower the gore off before ending her shift.

      • Peachy, Patrician and all other bleeding heart liberals and SJWs out there, I’m okay with humanitarian intake from any country in unlimited quantities as long as it is sponsored by a private caring citizen with the right morals such as yourself (good looking too I bet), give up one of your bedrooms and half your pay packet for the support of these poor souls and provide employment opportunity for these righteous citizens of the world.

        But please don’t force your ideologies on others using somebody else’s money. As you know, socialism is great until you run out of other people’s money. Talk is cheap, show some action and flash some cash and show the rest of us, what “moral and good” looks like.

        Yours Truely,

        Joe

      • Rf: Aboslutely, I mean I’ve been to Geneve and seen the sign in front of the UNHCR office, which said “All refugees, Monday, Wed Friday, 1-3PM”. This was back in 07 and I took a photograph. What a joke, no refugee can make it to the UNHCR office in Geneve.

        These bureaucrats love to be bleeding heart liberals with other people’s money and property, yet I don’t see many of these refugees anywhere NEAR the UNHCR office.

      • +1 Peachy.
        There are 65m forcibly displaced internationally
        23m officially registered as refugees
        We take 0.1% of that
        We are signatories to an international convention.
        Get over it. We take them.

      • @Peachy,
        Okay I’ll take the bait, then you can call me racist, which I am happy to wear and then the debate and arguments should stop with my vilification. One step further you may even can come murder my family as I disagree with you and had the temerity to speak out – kind of like Sudanese and Somali reactions to disagreements…not in Mogadishu or Khartoum, but here on the streets of inner city Melbourne.
        Just because what I have to say is unpalatable, does not make it any less true. Yes it may at one time have been moral to take displaced persons after 6 year global conflict, but to be multilaterally compelled to an outdated 65 year old convention is cultivating self immolation in the future. I respect your viewpoint, but its naive, and has no substance apart from in my opinion your wish to be seen as indignant against me for expressing a sensible and absolute position – I wear my stance with absolute conviction that it is correct. What you see in the news is the very beginning of the problems that are going to develop – that you as brainwashed Australian cannot hope to cope with. I urge you to experience Melbourne Central’s Food court on a Friday afternoon at 4pm, in fact if you have young children send them down to a park in Flemington, Kensington or North Melbourne , then come back to me about “morality.”

        The intention behind a refugee should be to turn them into a returnee – to rebuild a society with the skills earnt over the short period they required refuge. Academic evidence supports this as the most morally justifiable option on both the host and alleged refugee community.

      • I work with Sudanese and they’re good, hard working people. Every single immigrant group which has come to this country has featured a proportion of its members who fall into crime, its human nature not “failed culture” or society or whatever bollocks people like you throw out there. The Herald Sun makes a big deal out of a handful of Sudanese youth being deported out of over 400 people, mainly born and bred Australians, arrested for similar violent crimes in the same period

      • My my Joe…intolerant of another opinion. “People like you” and “bollocks”…
        An anecdotal story about how you work with Sudanese- is that the extent of your response? As a proportion of the population, for the nature of specific crimes of a certain demographic….never mind, it would be lost on “people like you.”

      • What on earth are you talking about? I live in the area you describe and ride through the public housing estate every day. Initially we had some reservations, buy in reality all I see are kids playing and families out and about, good quality culturally diverse restaurants with culturally diverse clientele.

        In the few months I’ve been living in the area the only people I’ve seen causing any trouble are drugged up or drunk Caucasians and even that is rare.

        I call BS to your anecdote and subsequent analysis.

      • As you’re entitled to Nogen.
        I’m comfortable with what I’ve said and what I’ve written and what I’ve experienced over a decade.
        Keep riding – and welcome to the area.

  4. I don’t mean to be obtuse, but where are the immigrants getting the money to even buy into the Australian housing market? Or are they simply fodder/renters for property investors? If the latter, then the rental yields aren’t high enough to justify the investment and the immigrants are therefore not responsible for bidding up the prices.

    • They borrow it, mate. Or bring it with them. And buy a house that an Australian would have otherwise bought.

      Or if they do neither, they rent a house that an Australian would have otherwise rented.

      So… it’s all of the above!

      • @Peachy,
        Okay I’ll take the bait, then you can call me racist, which I am happy to wear and then the debate and arguments should stop with my vilification. One step further you may even can come murder my family as I disagree with you and had the temerity to speak out – kind of like Sudanese and Somali reactions to disagreements…not in Mogadishu or Khartoum, but here on the streets of inner city Melbourne.
        Just because what I have to say is unpalatable, does not make it any less true. Yes it may at one time have been moral to take displaced persons after 6 year global conflict, but to be multilaterally compelled to an outdated 65 year old convention is cultivating self immolation in the future. I respect your viewpoint, but its naive, and has no substance apart from in my opinion your wish to be seen as indignant against me for expressing a sensible and absolute position – I wear my stance with absolute conviction that it is correct. What you see in the news is the very beginning of the problems that are going to develop – that you as brainwashed Australian cannot hope to cope with. I urge you to experience Melbourne Central’s Food court on a Friday afternoon at 4pm, in fact if you have young children send them down to a park in Flemington, Kensington or North Melbourne , then come back to me about “morality.”

        The intention behind a refugee should be to turn them into a returnee – to rebuild a society with the skills earnt over the short period they required refuge. Academic evidence supports this as the most morally justifiable option on both the host and alleged refugee community.

        Enjoy the future: http://m.liveleak.com/view?i=cb0_1447249820

    • Sydney rents up 3.7% yoy
      Melbourne rents up 5% yoy
      Canberra rents up 11% yoy
      Canberra VR is 1.6%

    • High immigration and provide them with enough social security and dodgy benefit schemes; artificially drive down interest rates to RAT negative so you have lots of investors to buy; then Bob’s your uncle! We’re all gunna be rich! Rich I tells ye!!
      It’s magic!

    • Caring about rental yield on resi property is so 90’s. You must have been OS for a couple of decades. Yields are for ugly people, good looking people get capital gains.

    • A lot of the nouveau rich from countries like China are emigrating. Poor families can’t afford to move or send their children to very expensive universities (and obtain residency thereafter). There’s a lot of wealth being generated in China, it doesn’t take a huge fraction of emigration to really change the dynamic of cities where they’re moving to 😛 That’s a polite way of saying the obvious, younger Australians are being being told to bite the pillow 😛

      • Sydney’s China-Town will grow rapidly – it will extend from Chatswood to Cronulla, and Aussies will soon be banished to the extremities, like Wollongong and Alice Springs… where they’ll all queue up at Centrelink which will be staffed completely by Chinamen…

      • Not beyond imagination.

        Chinese are historically the most racist people on the planet after Africans, definitely nowhere near as pluralistic and tolerant as white societies.

        Working class whites suffering from the oppression of racist sentiment of those of Chinese heritage does not bode well for them, if that’s their future.

      • Was on a train in Sydney last Sunday from Pennant Hills to Wynyard. 90% of the passengers were of Chinese extraction, many definitely recently from China (as per their clothing). This was the case all the way into Strathfield where a white couple got on.
        At each station before this there were realestate posters with smiling oriental realestate salesmen and Chinese characters written all over them. We went to Chatswood for shopping and at one point I looked in every single direction and not one white face in sight.’Now Im not racist (a bit culturist sometimes) but if we are importing so many people then to make Syney a proper city again instead of an inner city with lots of sprawl then we need to recreate what is/was good. ie we should be building up along the coast around and up from Pittwater and the likes, not just adding more concrete over our prime agricultural land. Expensive but cheaper than what we are doing today if we actually pulled all the freeloaders out of the system

      • Chinese the most racist after Africa? I call BS.

        Of course, these days, facts don’t count. Sophistry Rules!

      • “Chinese the most racist after Africa?”

        I watched a video not that long ago talking about a study done on racism and African countries did hold more than half of the top ten spots for most racist countries. I don’t remember China being mentioned though.

    • It is both but re the first option ask Harry Triguboff
      He has become Australia’s richest man on it

  5. Yes, some sensible comments from Latham. But I didn’t hear him mention tax reform (CGT & negative gearing)

    • That would be supporting the Labor Party on a policy he was floated on a Lateline interview, but the rest of the Party failed to support him on it. 2003, I think.

      • Jumping jack flash

        Ah, those heady days of 2003 when the debt bubble was still small, and incomes were rising quickly.
        Nobody would have seen debt or house prices as problems, because they weren’t.

        It is no surprise that any calls to reform the system to prevent the scheme of getting instantly and insanely rich (in 2003 dollars) from someone else’s debt mountain were simply laughed away.

        It was all new and exciting.

      • “Nobody” is a stretch. I remember George Megalogenis started hammering negative gearing in 2004, a guy called Peter Brain from Uni of Melbourne gave it a good pasting on 7.30 Report back in 2002 and good ol’ Saul Eslake has been calling successive government’s out since Hawke and Keating reinstated it back in 1987. And these are just a few examples that spring to mind quickly.

        But yes, the assumption by both major parties back then was not to rock the housing bonanza boat. Hence Latham’s Lateline interview resulted in a quick slapping down by the time he was eating his Weetbix.

  6. Will this discussion have much life beyond today? Great headline for a slow news period … but it will be gone tomorrow, along with the attention of the masses that would benefit. We get what we ask for … and have you seen the latest participants in “I am a celebrity: Get me out of here!”? Can’t wait to see that

    • “Will this discussion have much life beyond today?” Yes and no, jc2610. You won’t see anything happen tomorrow, or even the next day, but at least Mark Latham has not only seen the elephant in the room, but he is willing to point it out. Of course the racist card will be pulled if this gains more traction, but a majority of Australians secretly want the immigration rate lowered, even if it’s not politically correct to say so. It also means Hanson is appearing less extreme.

    • Don’t agree with you on the Dubai comment. Lived there for a while and only came back last year. Housing prices and rent and hard wired into jobs / immigration. When the good times roll (when oil prices are high … or there is turbulence in the region) there is a massive increase in jobs and immigrants that flood in to fill those roles. And guess what, housing prices go up and it is all the expat community talk about. When the price of oil drops, then the jobs get cut and the immigrants return home (me included) … and house prices decline … and it is all that the expat community can talk about.

    • Irish housing is not affordable. There is a severe shortage of decent housing in Dublin. Was before, during and after the boom in prices.
      Take care of the shortage and let price take care of itself.

  7. Its racist to restrict immigration. Ask Penny. She will tell you, you are on the wong side of the argument.

  8. This population thing is obviously a scam. A scam that benefits a few to the disadvantage of the many.

    I am examining the various ongoing scams and I have started a Meetup.com group called “Fake News” in Melbourne

    https://www.meetup.com/Fake-News-an-international-perspective/

    This Friday evening, we will be discussing the Climate scam over a German beer or two. At a future meetup, we will discuss the population Ponzi.

    You are all cordially invited to join the group – even if you cannot make it to our meetings. Having more members encourages others who can come to the meetings to join. But you will be sorely missed. 🙂

    Thank you.

  9. Sydney’s housing market second most expensive in the world | Daily Mail Online

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4149942/Sydney-s-housing-market-second-expensive-world.html

    … extract …

    … The survey compares major housing markets based on the ‘median multiple,’ a figure that is derived by dividing median house prices by median household incomes.

    Sydney scored a median multiple of 12.2, which means that a household would need to pool its gross annual income for 12 years to pay for a home up-front.

    Demographia considers a score of three or less affordable; anything over five is rated ‘severely unaffordable.’

    ‘These are lunatic figures, there’s no other way to describe it,’ Mr Pavletich told Daily Mail Australia.

    He went on to call Sydney’s housing market ‘a crisis situation.’ …

    … While state residents wait to see if the new premier can offer solutions, Mr Pavletich had one piece of advice for young families trying to start a life in Sydney: ‘Keep renting.’

    ‘Young people just want to avoid committing themselves to artificial bubble prices. They’re going to be faced with a life sentence of having to pay back excessive housing costs.’ … read more via hyperlink above …

    Demographia in the news …

    https://www.google.co.nz/?gws_rd=ssl#q=demographia&tbm=nws

  10. I wonder what percentage of new migrants into the eastern seaboard are coming just to build new apartments. I wonder what happens when that music stops, he…he…he…
    P.S. Eastern seaboard has more cranes than the U.S (with 330 million counted residents)

    • If you include verbal abuse and persistent nagging, not just frequent reminders, then maybe there is some equality of amount, but the degree of violence is also relevant and in that case look at hospitalisations, deaths, fleeing to refuges.
      While there are some extremely violent women (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katherine_Knight) the extreme violence is committed by men in the great majority of cases. “Females were typically the victims in intimate partner homicides (n=488; 75%) http://www.aic.gov.au/publications/current%20series/rip/21-40/rip38.html

    • “but the degree of violence is also relevant and in that case look at hospitalisations, deaths, fleeing to refuges…

      the extreme violence is committed by men in the great majority of cases. “Females were typically the victims in intimate partner”.

      That doesn’t say men are more abusive in relationships, it says they’re more dangerous.

      Nagging is a form of passive-aggressive abuse. Passive-aggressive behaviour is act enacting in a way where the abuser can present plausible deniability.

      • LOL, love it. A woman who asks her husband to take out the rubbish is as “abusive” as he is when he decks her for nagging, just not as “dangerous”.

        Stay classy.

      • “LOL, love it. A woman who asks her husband to take out the rubbish is as “abusive””

        Is that the only form of ‘nagging’ you can offer as an example.

        Love it. Stay obtuse and disingenuous.

      • RP has got a point. I was in an emotionally abusive relationship with an unstable woman (not the only fella who suffered at her hands; multiple on the go … as I later found out). Not a scratch on me, but I would’ve much rather been beaten to a pulp let me tell ya.

  11. Jumping jack flash

    Why don’t they just say it? Surely they must realise?
    Houses are simply the devices used to secure trillions of dollars worth of debt bubble against.

    If they were to fall in price, say, a small 5%, what happens to the debt secured against the original price? What happens to the banks?
    Debt would be essentially secured against nothing. This isn’t a very stable model for the banks.
    Lowering of existing house prices cannot, and will never, happen in any meaningful way.

    The only option is to create cheap new builds “out of town” with hardly any infrastructure or services (so they remain cheap).
    These new builds will be far enough away from existing houses, and so undesirable, that they will not affect the prices of the existing, debt-hyperinflated ones.
    The existing houses cannot fall in price because of that gargantuan debt bubble attached to their current prices.

    Nevertheless, with the ever-growing debt bubble, these “poor-people’s houses” will also rise in price, up to the maximum of what the richest poor person can obtain in debt. And then through the wonderful valuation system, all will eventually rise to that price as more debt mountains are obtained.

    • Correct. But it gets worse. As Aust run a massive current account deficit, the interest must be also borrowed.
      This new borrowing must be secured by a property ( basically ).

      So you could argue that prices need to rise by 3% -5%pa just to enable the new debt to be borrowed to finance the interest payments.

      That is why you find if housing prices plateau for a few years, the economy grinds to a halt, and rates are cut so restimulate the market values.

      I agree with you. if prices actual going down and stay down, the economy collapses without massive government intervention. QE, immigration floodgates open, foreign investor rules loosed, nothing will be off the table….The banks will demand it.

      It not a surprising. Spend more than you earn, eventually, has consequences.

      • Jumping jack flash

        Indeed.

        Its about the spending and debt mountains.
        The whole concept of getting rich on debt is flawed. You cant. The only ones to get rich from debt are banks. For ordinary people, and not banks, someone ends up being shafted, if not yourself.

    • Neville Gearless

      The debt may have been secured by the vale of the property in the first place, but the ongoing maintenance of that debt depends on income of the borrower. Houses could drop in value, but if the borrower keeps his job, the banks are satisfied. Property is not the share market, banks don’t do margin calls on it. They look at repayments, if they keep coming in, no issue.
      Also, building houses in a some far flung place will result in cheap housing, but only because there are no jobs. No reason to live there.

      • Jumping jack flash

        Indeed no reason to live there. But they can be seen to be doing something to address “affordability”.

        Also they can commute…

  12. As you’re entitled to Nogen.
    I’m comfortable with what I’ve said and what I’ve written and what I’ve experienced over a decade.
    Keep riding – and welcome to the area.

  13. johnwilliamsmithMEMBER

    The government is not ignoring immigration they are specifically promoting it in order to support and grow property industry and investment it’s a massive ponzu scheme. The people of Australia are being defrauded.