In praise of Leith van Onselen

Every idiot is claiming the 457 visa cut as their own:

The truth, yeh, whatever. Anyone that tracks the debates knows that only one person in this God forsaken village of idiots can claim to have positively influenced the immigration debate over a long period of time and his name is Leith van Onselen. Every day, month after month, year after year he has methodically dismantled vacuous pro-immigration policy.

As was the case with successful MB campaigns on negative gearing, superannuation and macroprudential reform, the arguments were made with consistent narrative and evidence, as well as being put directly to policy-makers.

Congratulations all around to the MB community. The seal on immigration cuts has been broken. More will follow as polls dictate.

David Llewellyn-Smith
Latest posts by David Llewellyn-Smith (see all)


  1. Still all words until we see something that is implemented, enforced and addresses the real issues of both business and Australian community at large. Until then, the bombs keep dropping….

    • Yes, John,

      Further, this lauding of Leith is self serving market focussed hyperbole. It is intended to falsely raise the status of MB. That is not to say that MB does not have some good qualities. For example MB produces some excellent tables and graphs that assist in dissemination of important economic information. Leith also has some great things to pass on about what he has learnt about low carb diets and healthy fats. Leith has reported other peoples stories on 457 visas and has only ever supported a reduction to lower HISTORICAL AVERAGE LEVELS OF IMMIGRATION. This is not an immediate fix to our economic problems caused by excessive immigration. Leiths approach is the ‘damp squib’ approach.

      Australia needs a ZERO NET IMMIGRATION target to protect the Australian environment, reduce real estate prices, enhance economic activity and improve the social and income level well-being of all Australians.

      Leith has contributed only very little to the ending of 457 visa’s. And there is potentially only essentially a change in name only. Other elements of 457 visas will remain under a rebranded name. Do you, reader trust this government? We must wait and see what they do.

      H&H is acting like Tony Abbot supporting his supporters or like Turnbull supporting his treasurer when he uses hyperbole such as in this post..

      Leith has rallied against pensioners, elders and low income earners from whom he wants to take their homes.

      Leith has spoken out against several good causes and, when he can catch them in time, has taken down contributors posts with which he disagrees as he wants to appear correct in what he says.

      H&H has severely dented his own credibility by posting this hyperbole.

      • P.S. I do mean the Australianised ‘damp squid’ and not ‘damp squib’. I like the visual effects of a damp squid.

      • What do you mean dented his own credibility ?

        He says he was the first person to question Big Australia and was the only person to do so and that everyone has since followed his acumen and laser like socio-political insight into this area which no one else had even considered. Seems entirely fair enough – I had never even heard of “Big Australia” and excessive immigration hurting the working class and local living standards before Leith raised it.

        I would also like to point out that The Donald, Brexit, Marine Le Pen, Geert Wilders, and the rise in nationalism in Germany, Netherlands, France, Greece, Italy based on mass migration destabilising society and living standards was also all entirely based on the diligent hard work of Leith Van Onselen raising the issue and bringing it to their attention.

        I honestly think we need a global appreciation of Leith Van Onselen day so we can all truly give thanks to the incredible wisdom that only Leith had.

        Three cheers for Leith !!!

        Hip-Hip- Hooray ! Hip-Hip- Hooray ! Hip-Hip- Hooray !


      • Let them keep their homes. But for the love of gravy don’t make me subsidise their kids’ inheritance.

    • “…Still all words until we see something that is implemented, enforced and addresses the real issues of both business and Australian community at large. Until then, the bombs keep dropping..”

      Yes, when it comes to this government, I would not place much weight on an announcement.

      Reeks of looking like doing something to settle the horses.

      Even if the number of guest worker visas are reduced, the number of other categories are likely to rise.

      Over the last few weeks I have been interviewing job candidates who were granted PR offshore having never set foot in the country before and there was no nothing special about any of their skills.

      If we are going to import labour I would sooner have PR than guest workers but at the end of the day it is all just more population ponzi driving and being supported with a growing mountain of unproductive capital inflows.

      Until the rate of immigration slows changing the labels and paperwork does not mean much.

      Maintain the Rage.

      • +1 Can anyone identify where Turnbull says he is going to reduce the immigration intake?

      • I work in IT and handle project manager requests for short term specialised staff and often the Indian IT companies put forward only 457 options who most of the time are poor candidates and we are forced to terminate them with or without cause. The other thing I hear is the skills present on resumes do not present themselves upon hiring and most often these Indian 457s are average at best which makes you wonder why locals or local graduates are not hired in their place. Nothing but a total rort from day one.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        “Over the last few weeks I have been interviewing job candidates who were granted PR offshore having never set foot in the country before”

        Are local candidates “allowed” to be interviewed or is it pre decided locals are too lippy.

      • EP,

        It is difficult getting any applicants! Beggars can’t be choosers.

        As for locals they either don’t apply or if they do they don’t turn up for an interview or they ring to say they have already been offered a job.

        And this is for an office admin position and we increased the salary twice in the last 18 months. We don’t even say what is on offer – we just ask what they want. Most applicants are seeking what is on offer so that is not the problem.

        Sydney is pretty close to full employment in many occupations and has been for at least 2 years.

        Check out that SMH story about 457 and look at the numbers being brought in.

      • at your comment to EP – spot on. I was interviewing few months ago and local candidate (the only one that applied) did not show up for an interview. This was for a junior position to train to sell IT Hardware. The local candidate did not have any experience she just graduated from high school but I really wanted to hire local so I thought I give her a chance for an interview and as long as she is decent and intelligent person (some people can’t afford uni or other circumstances forces them to drop out) I know I can train her for the rest..

    • Yes it was all Leith and no one else.

      Wow. There are no words for that kind of utter crap. Just……oh my god.


      • maybe not the only one but definitely one of the very very very few that provided an intelligent argument on WHY instead of ranting like PH.

  2. ceteris paribus

    Yep, well done LVO on both jobs for Australians first and your related advocacy on the high levels of unemployed and underemployed youth, 16-24. Keep up the monitoring to hold them to their commitments.

  3. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    “his name is Leith van Onselen. Every day, month after month, year after year he has methodically dismantled vacuous pro-immigration policy”

    RACIST !!!!!!!!!!

    HA HA,….Only joking.
    Three cheers for Leith!

    Hip hip,

  4. Good on ya Leith for highlighting the truth and help counter the BS political spin world we are forced to live in.

  5. “Still all words until we see something that is implemented, enforced and addresses the real issues of both business and Australian community at large.”

    Exactly! It’s the same with any law that isn’t enforced or policed. Employers in Australia regularly laugh at labour laws because they know they’re not often enforced (or if they are the penalties are worth paying). I won’t go over my personal experiences as a low skilled worker again, but I’m pretty sure what I’ve experienced is not at all rare. I hope we’re both wrong, but I doubt this government would really shut off the supply of cheaper labour.

    On a somewhat irreverent note, I wonder how News Corp papers will handle with this news. They’re no doubt thrilled with the far right’s ongoing attack on political correctness, but I wouldn’t imagine they’d be as keen on the attacks on immigration rates and business liberties. I’m sure they’d prefer to focus on the culture wars.

    But anyway, good on MB for the good fight!

  6. Done it again UE. Thanks from the unemployed youth that have had such a raw deal and no voice.

  7. proofreadersMEMBER

    Next PM Dutton was totally unconvincing in peddling the spiel on 457s etc on 7.30 last night.

  8. Shorten is not claiming Malcolm’s 457 “cut” as his own.
    Shorten is saying it is a sham…..which it is.

    • rob barrattMEMBER

      My understanding is that there will be a “crockdown” on everything. The 457 visa will be replaced by the new improved:

      • 457IT (Information Technology) visa – everything goes to Mumbai on this visa, including all Australian IT graduates;

      • 457HT (Harry Triguboff ) visa – for those with the money to buy a new Sydney Highrise;

      • 457FO ([email protected]@k Off) visa – Fruit picking, crap sweeping etc etc that Australians are far to entitled to do;

      • 457ISIL visa – can’t talk about that but the rumour is the progressive Left are demanding this anti-racist measure in order to get this crock through the senate.

      Yes, it’s all going to change. ..

  9. I swear this site is becoming more like a cult each day. Do you guys really believe you have an influence over policy in this country?

    • Mining BoganMEMBER

      57 shuts-ins have a lot of sway. If each one knows just one person then that’s 114 who get the message. That’s more than the amount who voted for Malcolm Roberts!

      That’s power my friend. Power.

    • True. There’s no evidence presented that LVO had any influence over the policy debate. Talking is not the same thing as being listened to.

    • Ronin8317MEMBER

      While it is impossible to know how much, this site does have some influence because the MSM have completely lost their ability to analyze and become a group-think machine.

      • CTRL+C CTRL+V

        I am honestly amazed they haven’t had litigation against them – just goes to show how little they are considered.


      • Show me one piece of evidence.

        We were assured from inside sources that the real estate review by Kelly O’Dwyer, then the ATO data matching, then the APRA, etc were all going to smash FIRB haziness.

        Sorry there are 50 more sites like this one. Each saying the same thing, or at least ranting away in the dull, dark recesses of the internet blogs.

      • Graham,

        50+ more sites and you are choosing this one?

        Do you prefer dull, dark recesses or are we just very very lucky?

      • Even StevenMEMBER

        Oh. I’m sorry. I thought you asked whether MB has INFLUENCED policy.

        I think what you meant to ask was whether Leith and David sit in Cabinet. The answer to that is ‘no’.

        In regards to providing examples, I’m afraid I can’t go that. Confidentiality and all that…

    • I think he’s just having a laugh m8.

      There is a lot of sentiment out there to lower immigration. It is still very impotent though.

    • Unlike us, the MB guys know who actually reads and subscribes to their blog – and they have already mentioned a number of times that a number of their readers and subscribers are “movers and shakers” in Aussie politics, finance and economics.

  10. reusachtigeMEMBER

    Congratulations? What? You’re joking! All you’re doing is reducing the pool of potential good looking property investors to have relations with and that is pure evil. No one wants to see house price booms lessen and that’s what your call will do. It’s an attack on proper thinking people!!

  11. HadronCollision

    Quote: “successful MB campaigns on negative gearing”

    What successful campaigns? Genuine question….nothing’s changed yet? Or did I miss something.

    • Nothings changed on anything – literally nothing.

      Yet Leith is claiming he was the inspiration behind Brexit, Trump, Le Pen, Geert Wilders and was the first person in Australia to question “Big Australia”.

      Guy has some seriously large CAJONES.

      Just absurd article which should be removed.


      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        I can imagine, 100s of years in our future, the autonomous AIs and cybernetic citizens of Australia looking back fondly on our Greatest National heros,


        Van Onselen

        He’s one of us fellas,…an MBer,…be proud!


      • Mate, sentiment and views have changed – it’s simply untrue that “nothing” has changed just because official policy hasn’t changed.

        Negative Gearing is clearly being discussed in ways (and by people) that it has not been discussed before.

  12. proofreadersMEMBER

    95,000 IN TOTAL 457 visa workers in Straya v. 170,000+ migrants EACH AND EVERY YEAR in NOM to Straya.

    A pin prick (assuming it penetrates) by Do-nothing and he even had to plagiarise The Donald for his “Strayans first” catchcry.

    Apparently, in a radio interview a few minutes ago, Do-nothing was reminded of a tweet a few years ago wherein he was seemingly in favour of 457 visas – an inconvenient truth?

    • I have a feeling we’re all being taken for a ride with another bait and switch. I would take 457’s being on that visa an average of 5 years so that is less than 20k per year. Just over 10%. The new visa will allow what, 10k, back? The shortfall will be compensated elsewhere.
      Glad to see some limitation on the indentured worker visa though.

  13. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    Is agressive individualsim and focussed Narcissism the only pathway to modern Success?
    I hope not, the pod cast below depressed me a little,…personal branding,…yuk!

    “Is a career in sport now about branding over athleticism?

    Could the number of social media followers you have sway whether you get that job?

    We’re all enjoined to develop our own ‘brand’, but the art of personal branding is becoming increasingly complicated.”

  14. Hmm – your target is reduce NOM by 110k-120k, government introduces measure likely to cause reduction between 0k and 10k.
    Victory declared!
    If you guys had been in charge of the Allies in WWII, they’d have declared victory in about 1942.

    • +1
      2yrs after MB claimed “mission accomplished” on FIRB enforcement, it is now clear that, as warned at the time, it is and always was a sham.
      What would motivate otherwise intelligent people make such an early and foolish claim, so loudly despite all the evidence to the contrary?
      Why would they not only swallow the govt line but sell it so quickly?
      It made no sense
      It makes sense in the context of the overarching MB narrative
      The RBA can cut teh rates because there is a housing crash
      The RBA can cut teh rates because the FIRB “crackdown”
      The RBA can cut teh rates because immigration “crackdown”
      The RBA can cut teh rates because MP “crackdown”
      The RBA can cut teh rates because Chinese capital flows “crackdown”

      Deja vu

  15. Well done Leith, this is the first crack in the Big Australia ponzi defences, hopefully NOM and the virtual residency guarantees for people studying here will be next. And simultaneously fighting the gas cartels gouging us – viva la revolution!

  16. FiftiesFibroShack

    The unions were speaking out about 457s before MB. And this a rebrand and tweak, it won’t be the end of the rorting.

  17. Totally justified and well-earned praise. You really opened my eyes to the issue of immigration and ‘big Australia’. Before MB I’d never seen anyone come at this issue with facts and clear, rational thinking, and I certainly had none of my own. I don’t think I’d even conceived it possible to examine these issues in such a way. I can also see MB’s intellectual influence spreading far and wide. The MSM are a bit more clever about repackaging and obscuring the source of their sudden, uncharacteristic insight. However, on places like reddit I’ve seen phrasing that that has been almost entirely lifted from the MB playbook. And I could swear there are more than a few political staffers who regularly read this site. Have you ever looked over your web logs? I’d be happy to help with (on a volunteer basis) if this is something you are interested in (although I imagine you’d want to get to know me a little better first).

    For my part, I’ve been spreading the MB gospel far and wide. The charts you put together are top notch, and usually the first thing I reach for when engaging in online debate. I’ve even circulated them in some other places that you might not expect (although you might be aware , Leith, if you happen to still keep in touch with certain folk). Perhaps you guys should consider maintaining a ‘current chart pack’; it would be a fantastic and organic way to market the site, with readers like me pushing your top-notch analysis out into other parts of the internet. It might be even more effective with a slight update of the standard chart graphics and such (I know, I know, but first impressions count). Unfortunately I can’t really help you here; not an artistic bone in my body.