Morrison’s immigration capitulation nearly complete

By Leith van Onselen

It’s been amazing watching Scott Morrison’s speedy transformation from mass immigration ‘Big Australia’ defender to a sceptic on the verge of slashing the permanent migrant intake.

As recently as four months ago, Scott Morrison lambasted Tony Abbott’s push to cut the migrant intake to 110,000, warning it risked Australia’s future economic prosperity and would “cut off your nose to spite your face”. Morrison had also frequently claimed that cutting immigration would cost the federal budget billions in foregone revenue, completely ignoring the horrendous costs incurred by the states.

Then Scott Morrison pivoted to lying about the migrant intake, claiming that it was temporary migrants causing the population pressures, not the permanent migrant intake – an argument that was thoroughly debunked by MB again, and again and again.

Next came Scott Morrison’s ‘migrants to the bush’ smokescreen – a policy that was comprehensively debunked by Morrison himself when the former Gillard Labor Government proposed a similar policy in 2010-11, along with numerous other commentators.

Yesterday, we witnessed another leg in Scott Morrison’s capitulation over immigration, spruiking plans to let the states determine Australia’s migrant intake by submitting to the federal government their annual migration needs:

Because the states plan roads, hospitals and schools, they need to say where they want population growth.

“This is a blinding piece of common sense, which is: how about states who plan for population growth and the Commonwealth government who sets the migration levels, actually bring this together?” Mr Morrison told Sky News on Monday…

Instead, the prime minister wants to see states work closely with Canberra on where migrants should go, and where expansion should happen.

“They are in the best position to actually make a judgment about what the carrying capacity is in their state and territory,” he said.

“We’ll set what the cap is, we’ll let it be demand-driven, but it has to be based on what the carrying capacity is at state and territory level.”

Mr Morrison said the push to get migrants out to regional areas could be done with conditions on non-permanent visas.

“If you want permanent residency in this country and you’re on a non-permanent visa, and you haven’t been compliant with the terms of your non-permanent visa, you don’t get a permanent residency visa and you go home,” he said.

MB always said that the immigration debate would be won in Sydney, given this is where the pressures are most acute and where the political backlash has been strongest.

Clearly, Scott Morrison’s latest plan is a direct response to the NSW State Government and Opposition’s call for immigration into Sydney to be slashed.

Some MB readers have already dismissed Scott Morrison’s latest plan as all talk and another policy smokescreen. However, I believe it runs deeper than this. The Coalition can no longer deny that mass immigration has turned toxic in the crush-loaded big cities, and needs a narrative that allows it to cut immigration without looking contradictory, desperate and poll driven.

By letting the states ‘bid down’ the migrant intake, Scott Morrison has that narrative, which is an easy sell to the public and difficult for Labor to attack. It would also make it difficult for Labor to justify raising the migrant intake back up in the future.

Letting the states effectively set the immigration cap via the bottom-up is also a profound policy improvement over the current top-down approach. It would help eliminate the vertical fiscal imbalance dogging immigration policy, whereby the federal government receives the lion’s share of the benefits from mass immigration via increased personal and company tax receipts, whereas the states are left carrying the economic and social infrastructure costs.

While the devil is always in the detail, fully implemented this policy would very likely see Australia’s overall migrant intake substantially reduced with far less permanent migrants flowing to NSW (Sydney) and VIC (Melbourne), only partly offset by more going to other jurisdictions.

For mine, this latest announcement is the strongest indication we have seen that the Coalition will cut immigration in the lead-up to the election.

While we are unsure if Labor will back the move, it does suggest a paradigm shift may be finally taking place in the immigration debate.

A meaningful reduction in Australia’s immigration intake is looking increasingly likely:

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  1. I think you are too optimistic. He is property council through and through. He has had plenty of chances to cut but has chosen any other option. I have just been letter boxing for SA . That is the only way to bring them to heel.

    • These scum are all the same…. when votes are on the line and they are polling worse than a random cardboard cutout, they will promise the world even if it turns their tongues black. If they then manage to stay in power or topple the incumbents, all bets are off.

    • This is the point: is Scummo willing to risk the destruction of every single ponzi prop by reducing immigration?
      – Housing market
      – GDP
      – Construction industry
      – the Budget

      Does he really want to be the PM that presided over the first recession in 27yrs? Does he crave power that much that he simply doesn’t care? Colour me sceptical until the results are in.

      • Scummo’s certainly craven enough in his desire to exercise and retain power, stupid enough to not understand the economic consequences and selfish enough to believe he’ll buy up a whole bunch of properties on the cheap and that’ll be reason enough to praise the Lord

      • He will still lose the election. But this brainfart might get them a few votes so that they save some seats.

        If by some miracle Libs win then they just delay any implementation and blames the States for delays.

        Best to vote for One Nation and other anti-immigration parties but perhaps put the Libs ahead of Lab and Greens at the end of the pack of liars.

    • Fitz,
      “He is property council through and through.” And maybe so, BUT, Morrison is a self-interested @hole and his self-interest lies in remaining PM and that will supersede any loyalty to the PCA.

  2. In the Olympics they limit competitions to 3 athletes per country, to increase diversity and make the whole thing more interesting.

    There are separate events for men and women, to ensure the whole competition is not just dominated by men.

    Why don’t we do the same?

    Limit any one country to 10% of the migrant intake. Limit males to a maximum of 50% of the intake from each country. 45% if we want to address past imbalances (eg. 90% of migrants from Pakistan are male).

    This way we’ll get actual diversity and balance.

  3. Skeptical that it will shift the votes enough. Between existing perceptions of racism (e.g. recent denunciations of Muslims and terrorism), Greens’ accusations of racism and ALP not adopting it (to appear as different, appeal to recent migrants) it might just confirm that the immigration is about racism.

    I think the immigration debate needs to be won on the merits of the argument rather than on dirty tactical votes, otherwise it’s liable to return. Easy come, easy go. Scott Morrison flip-flopping proves the point.

    The racists need to bite their tongues and let the economics win. There’s a handful of racists on MB and while I disagree with them on racism, we at least have the same goal in mind – reduction of migration to sustainable numbers.

    So whether you want to vote Sustainable Australia Party or One Nation, if we keep it to the numbers the debate will go more smoothly.

    • Islam is not a race. The bigot was the bloke with the knife. Not the person who draws attention to it.

      • Watching the news last night was very telling. They showed a psych criticising Scummo for his comments, noting that if only the perp had received proper mental health treatment maybe he wouldn’t have gone and done what he did. Not 10 minutes later, they reported on the previous Bourke St case where the prosecution was casting doubt on that Greek dude’s attempt to appear insane – complete with derisive commentary by the journalist on hand.

        Now I’m pretty sure that the state prosecutor and the PM are both lacking in qualifications to decide who is actually crazy, but it was extremely interesting to see how the ABC divides the world into those with agency and those without.

      • I know it seems odd after so much overuse but some people actually think “racist ” is a pejorative

    • How was Liz Allen on RN yesterday. She is putrid.

      She obviously hasn’t read Grantham’s August 18 missive. We are totally fked.

      Soil. Climate. Food. Population.

      She could stand eating a lot less and donating to some women’s contraceptive education in Nigeria.

      Now I sound like Jacob. #badgeofhonour.

    • I have finally come to terms with the fact that I am a racist, a label a I don’t wear with pride, but rather as a matter of fact, because it is necessary to begin to decontaminate the word, just like calling someone populist is an increasingly hollow insult.

      Being racist doesn’t mean that I hate people of other races and want to see them all exterminated, ethnically cleansed, and such. What it means is that I prefer to see people sharing my background in charge and dominating the place that I live. Race is a reasonable proxy for shared linguistic, cultural, genetic and historic ties. There is reasonable evidence to show that preference for ones own race is expressed in babies. This should not be surprising. If an organism wants its genes to propagate more, it is better off supporting a society where the gene pool contains more genes similar to its own, given a choice. This is not to say there isn’t value in diversity. There absolutely is, but not to the extent that dominance is threatened. Singaporean Chinese understand this very clearly, and they have built a successful multicultural society in which Chinese dominance is maintained through supporting migration from China to counteract higher Malay and Indian fertility.

      Racism is visible in school yards groupings, in criminal gang formation, and in every country in the world. It is an inevitable fact of life. In its extreme form it is very ugly, brutal, and evil. In it’s least extreme form it boils down to loyalty to one’s family. It has been noted often throughout history that families are the progenitors of nations.

      I posit that racism should be no more or less acceptable than the anti-racist open border types of beliefs, which also have their moderate and extreme positions. I would argue that trying to eliminate race differences is more racist than anything so called racists have proposed. In Australia the anti-racist position is quite extreme and we are seeing the gradual replacement of the Anglo-European people and culture with a more Asian populace and culture. This serves the interests only of the elite who live in protected enclaves and benefit from the associate uplift in property prices.

      Poor whites (and also Aboriginals) have been being displaced from their housing in our major cities for some time, their social networks dispersed and fractured. When they started arcing up aggressively on public transport everyone said how immoral and evil they were. Now that the Chinese are dominating significant parts of the North Shore, the chattering classes are talking about it, and so the polite forms of anti immigration sentiment get expressed more and more. Including the arguments that you read on this site. However, the underlying reasoning and motivation remains the same, if not articulated.

      Race isn’t everything, but it isn’t nothing either.

      • Given the way “Racism” is used then clearly the current meaning of race is “shared linguistic, cultural, genetic and historic ties.” and bears no actual genetic connotation any more.

      • Racism isn’t flawed because of the desire to eliminate Western ideals; if anything it’s calls back to Western ideals of individuals not being judged by the groups they’re part of, that each person can be judged by the merit of their thoughts and actions. That means you can determine that 99.99% of any group is terrible or whatever so long as you determine that by judging each individual rather than simply saying “white person = oppressor” or “Muslim = terrorist”.

        In any case, if you want to be racist go ahead. In the end as long as we agree that we want to reduce migration down to ~70k or so we can all agree on the same policy regardless of how we arrived at that policy.

      • What it means is that I prefer to see people sharing my background in charge and dominating the place that I live.

        No, that’s not what “being racist” means at all.

  4. Lol! The LNP are completely full of shit. eg having bad polls due to lack of women so they reduce the tampon tax. Token, meaning less efforts with a result more likely to be the exact opposite of what they say. They are liars who only support the rich, every word, every effort, every policy is an agenda to that end.

  5. Leith, as always, you make sensible points. As always these scum manage to weasel out of it via one way or another. Keep up the fight, hopefully we win the good fight, but we shall see. They are like cockroaches that breed in the dark dingy places and always find a way.

  6. When I first saw this news yesterday (letting the states determine the immigration rate), I thought he is calling the states bluff.

    The state premiers (Gladys since 2018, Jay Weatherill since Aug 2017, Mark McGowan since March 2017, Bob Carr since March 2000) have ranted against mass immigration and now ScoMo is calling their bluff.

    The states can already create a taxing environment for foreign “students” but the states refuse to.

    • +Many. It will be interesting to see the states response when they are given a direct ability to set numbers. I suspect the NSW Government is actually rather fond of the construction frenzy + RE price support immigration provides.

      • From my knowledge, they are definitely not fond of increasing demands for expansion of health and emergency services to cater for recent arrivals

      • Yes it bothers me too, but like migrants to the regions, what can they do to ensure those coming to SA won’t just immediately evacuate to Sydney and Melbourne?

      • Ramp it up to 5 million in Adelaide – see how the rentseekers like it when they can’t move anywhere.

    • Liz Allen, demographic and Big Mac expert, yesterday made the point that the states aren’t serious
      She said they have the means to cut immigration now. I’m not sure if that’s the case as it’s top down, but this new idea could sure test her hypothesis.

      • The states can make immigrants very uncomfortable quite easily if they desired to. Large fees and charges for all sorts of things would be plenty to force low income immigrants towards other states. Not a single state has implemented any that I know of. They clearly have the power to do this as stamp duty is already varied for non residents.

  7. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    It’ll be interesting if the number does get bid up or down by the states and Lathams One Nation gets 2 or 3 seats in a hung NSW Parliment.


    I think the the NSW state government has realised that the golden goose (stamp duty from housing) is very ill and the revenue is rapidly falling, which means the government would have to produce a responsible budget and pull back from some of the large,costly and ill conceived infrastructure projects they have planned. So instead of blaming themselves for being poor managers, blame the federal government for something the states cannot control, immigration.
    Immigration is a huge problem.
    So now the federal government wants to avoid being the ones who cut immigration, so they look to avoid their responsibilities and share the responsibility with the states.
    If it works the federal government looks good by working with the states.
    If it doesn’t they get to blame the state governments

    • Good point about the blame game.

      Looks like immigration is about to be muddied up like the electricity sector. Before Gillard became PM, electricity was entirely the responsibility of the states and the feds had nothing to do with it. In 2002, an article was published saying “if Perth gets power cuts in the summer, the state government will lose the election”. Now, we have both the feds and states claiming to be responsible for power prices!

  9. The Prime Marketing Minister will say ANYTHING to get a vote and once he gets them he will be switching to delivering for his corporatist sponsors in a heart beat.

    Dutton is more likely to actually cut immigration than Morrison though probably not for the right reasons.

    As for the ALP?

    Zero chance.

    The power structure of the party is packed to the gills with middle class virtue signallers and globalists ( left and right wing flavours)

    • St JacquesMEMBER

      Exactly. After the election they’ll make some cuts here and there to great fanfare but they’ll play around with the definitions of long and short term migration, students, work visas, etc. Not much will change if at all – their one and only priority is to maintain the parasitical FIRE ponzi, whatever it takes. Only a genuine crash has any chance of changing attitudes, and only just, or we’ll maintain our long and slow cruise to Argentine s**t hole status. EOS

    • I don’t see how this one act is going to turn a person who has turned away from the LNP, back. The LNP is in a severe deficit of trust and decision making capability off the back of not listening, planning or foreseeing the mess they are in on many front.

      In my mind this takes them from a -10 to a -8, but they are still negative and won’t be getting my vote.

  10. St JacquesMEMBER

    Vote number 1 or 2 or 3 for the Sustainable Australia Party (SAP) in the Senate. We need an intelligent voice in that circus.

  11. Last weekend I had a nice enough Uber driver recently from here from third world . He is bout to bring his bride over. I had to ask myself . What does this individual have to offer Australia that we do not already have ?
    Young people find it bloody hard to get jobs yet the elites bring in these punters with very different ideas especially about women as told to me by Mr Uber.. then when shit hits the fan they put adds on TV saying school boys with their fathers tacit endorsement are responsible for gender violence. My son is only 11 he hates those adds I haven’t said anything about them .

    They truly are a mad bunch the nobility in this country .

    • Rod
      I do a lot of work, voluntary, in a ‘charity’ dealing with men’s emotional and intellectual well being. I can tell you those ads are just plain damaging. Men are being affected by them and NOT in ANY good way. There is ne redeeming feature in the ads. Note, in respect of your uber driver, the perpetrators are white males. I guess, if they could, they’d nominate them as Christian white males. Anyway, it does NO good to make a man feel worse and more isolated – at least not unless it is part of an intense individual programne to restore him after taking him down.
      I guess those ads were designed by a bunch of women who are hostile to men and who know NOTHING about men. I’ll bet they still have their overpaid jobs despite wasting money on their own personal campaign of bitterness.

      • OK! So do tell me what criteria are applied to make my comment the subject of moderation? Strewth! What has this place become???????

      • It’s pretty freighting where it’s all going. I don’t see any adds at Vibema or on TV about the Casino industry driving people to suicide and the effect that has on women or pomies in general when dad comes home after dumping monthly pay at Local RSL slot machines . Nope school boys are the cause .

        I give women a wide berth these days too much to lose and very little to be gained .

      • +1 those ads are BS. They just alienate young men, by placing the blame on them.

        Re: uber drivers they are all foreign from my experience.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        The angriest feminists females always seem to me, to be the ones most dripping in middle class “White male Privilage”
        Julia Baird is a prime example of someone with enormous power berating all men for having a Power and Privilege the vast majority of them just simply dont have.
        The Hypocrisy is revolting to listen to.

      • I was getting into a lift the other day and was first of 3 people to get in. A comment was made that I didn’t have manners as I didn’t let the female in first. I am confused.

      • As a father of 2 young sons – 3.5yo and 1 month old – I really like those ads. I think they send a powerful useful message about raising young men who respect women. It’s sad it’s come to this, but I don’t think those ads are far off the mark. They don’t disenfranchise me at all.

      • reusachtigeMEMBER

        ^^ Oh, you’re a dude. Your soft comments had lead me to believe you were a chick. Haha, that’s kinda funny.

    • “What does this individual have to offer Australia that we do not already have ?”
      An acceptance of lower living standards and a willingness to work for less money. Of course most Australians wouldn’t consider that something to offer, but the wealthy do, and that’s all that matters.

    • What the immigrants brings to Australia are people willing to take on debt (you need a new car to drive for Uber) so you can work long hours at less than minimum wages. Never mind what happens in 5 years when you need a newer car because the users are giving you bad ratings.

      As to ‘gender violence’, it is language used to deliberately manipulate people into thinking all white man are evil.

  12. The damage caused by the rampant immigration is already irretrievable in Sydney. At least weekly my better half, on coming home from the ridiculous road congestion and loss of community says “we have got to get out of Sydney”. Come the election, people will look at the mess and ask who is to blame. And will vote out the Libs at both State and Federal level.

  13. Just a reminder people – when we do cut immigration there is going to be serious economic dislocation. The degree of social dislocation this will result in is moot. We are hardly a cohesive society.

    • It will happen by choice or because we are forced into it. But it will happen either way. I’d rather we choose to do it and try to manage it than react to a crisis, which in my opinion is almost baked in now. It’s going to be ugly either way.

      • G this depression is gunna be HUGE
        No one will be able to manage it.
        the aspirations of very many punters (granted of low IQ) are out the window
        someone has to be blamed (other than the person in the mirror)
        so who is it gunna be??

    • Let’s hope it happens before we’re like th UK and unable to offer someone like Asia Bibi asylum due to fears certain elements in our society would not tolerate this.

      • I just watched Argo on my return flight from the US, it’s about the US Embassy kidnappings in the late 70s (1 of the best parts of the film is the intro that talks about how Iran go to where it was at that point politically) anyway the reason I mention it is that the UK may fear a similar kind of uproar from the imported natives from those regions.

        Do I agree? Nope, but the UK has made their bed and now they have to lie in it.

        I also watched Michael Caine “My Generation” documentary and realised I was born too late… I should have been a swinger in the 60s..

        The curious part for me is how the boomers went from that back then, to today’s boomers…anyway I digress.

      • reusachtigeMEMBER

        Yeah those fkn sick towel heads! If we let them they’d convert or kill us all. Fully. The only relations you’d ever get would be with your cousin.

  14. If they are genuine about doing this properly, then great. However I suspect the numbers will be set by the property & education Mafia.
    (also they really need to reform the skilled migrant stream so that they are forced to work in the profession they are qualified in and paid at a rate that is above median which would match the supposed skill shortage instead of ending up in lower skilled roles. But it’s a good start provided it doesn’t become corrupted by vested interests.

    • “doesn’t become corrupted by vested interests”
      You’re kidding aren’t you, this is Australia maaaaate.

    • GunnamattaMEMBER

      ScoMo or the Rodent?

      I’d bastinado my nuts off before i put a schmick of credibility into an word either of them ever said…..

    • Would you like this red with green polkadots cyanide pill or this green with red polkadots cyanide pill? they both kill you foaming at the mouth – but hey … choice!

    • Dude… those astroturfers have already moved on – they glide on a cushion of air like an air-hockey puck – which explains the reason why they can chance direction so quickly..

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      The questions being asked about the ownership of the New “inovative” charitable enterprise” receiving Govie money is what brought about the backflip.

  15. who says we need to have diverse immigration anyway?

    most of the newcomers from china and india have no loyalty to australia. Whose side do you think they would be on in a war with the mother country? Not ours.

    The first party that adopts what the people want ie a nationalist stance in immigration, with numbers slashed, romps in the next election

    citizenship after 10 years of PR and no welfare for PR residents

    • I want the Swiss model on citizenship where the local community has a say on how well the person had integrated into the community. I suppose the Swiss have less ethnic colonies then we do, but that could be used as a reason for not granting citizenship of time spent more than half your time as PR living in a colony based on your previous citizenship.

      Definitely shouldn’t be able to sponsor marriage from the home country either, not bring parents over.

      In my work place The number of staff who’ve gone on holiday and come back needing to plan how to bring their bride over leaves me gobsmacked. They’ve been in Australia for many years. How can you claim to be in a relationship when you’ve spent practically no time together.

      I’m starting to direct a lot of the make foreign students have the bride’s family financially supporting their studies as well as their own family. Might take 10 years for the investment to pay off, but the lure of the parents getting an Aussie retirement is huge.

    • “The first party that adopts what the people want ie a nationalist stance in immigration, with numbers slashed, romps in the next election”
      And then ceases to exist as a political party as all the corporate donors simply stop donating to them. Malcolm can only put up so much money, you know

  16. Diversity is NOT strength.

    This country was much better off in the 1950’s when immigrants who came here had to assimilate and not form ethnic ghettos. They also came to work and not get welfare for their 10th child

    Incidentally all those 300 ‘ASIO watchlist’ mongrels should be locked up with a view to deportation….what possible benefit do they bring to our society? They are a waste of money so stop pussyfooting around and revoke citizenship and deport them back home

    • Nearly every Socialist government that has ever existed has eroded civil rights to the point of destroying democracy. We have already taken a few steps in that direction by no longer being allowed to abuse police officers that have overstepped their authority, subjective 18c laws that no longer permit us to “offend”. What you are asking for is an even more significant step in eliminating people on the basis of suspicion.

      • You are comparing convicted felons with innocent civilians. Even then, Border Force does not have the ultimate authority to throw out a convicted felon, or to deny them a right to speak or vote. There are overarching committees to ensure civil rights are not violated.

        Also, recall Hillary Clinton wanted to permanently destroy the Republican vote by opening up the borders and granting immediate voting rights to immigrants. From that perspective, I would argue that strict border control is pro rather than anti democratic.

      • Who has set up and running Border Force? Your prejudice is showing.

        Notably lacking from the last 30-40 years of Government in the western world: anything resembling socialism.

  17. No need to cut anything. Very soon numbers will start dropping and in few years turn negative i.e. emigration surpassing immigration

    • Problem is those that will emigrate will be young Australian’s (not the imports). Happened that way in Ireland.

      • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

        I worked with heaps of Irish men and women at Cloudbreak.
        There was more of them than there was Kiwis! and we had heaps of them there to.
        So many anecdotes of people being wiped out and Zeroed, it had a chilling effect on many of them, you could see it in their personalities,…they were nearly all like minor trauma victims.

      • Yeah young Australians mostly skilled, as well as truly skilled immigrants and immigrants from countries where they are going to be able to hide from the debt

  18. Scott Morrison and crass voter buying go hand in hand. Looks as though SAP is really gaining popularity now. Vote them Number 1.