Scanlon Foundation hoisted upon own immigration petard

By Leith van Onselen

I noted last week how the Scanlon Foundation’s mouthpiece, professor Andrew Markus, rubbished most recent opinion polling, from a variety of sources, supporting lower immigration into Australia, including:

  • Australian Population Research Institute: 54% want lower immigration;
  • Newspoll: 56% want lower immigration;
  • Essential: 54% believe Australia’s population is growing too fast and 64% believe immigration is too high;
  • Lowy: 54% of people think the total number of migrants coming to Australia each year is too high;
  • Newspoll: 74% of voters support the Turnbull government’s cut of more than 10% to the annual permanent migrant intake to 163,000 last financial year; and
  • CIS: 65% in the highest income decile and 77% in the lowest believe that immigration should be cut or paused until critical infrastructure has caught up.

Instead, Markus talked up the Scanlon Foundation’s latest survey, which found that only 43% of respondents believed the migrant intake was “too high”.

However, as explained by the Australian Population Research Institute, the Scanlon Foundation’s surveys capture the views of migrant non-citizens that are ineligible to vote, rather than only Australian citizens. Hence, they are very likely biased in favour of mass immigration.

Regardless, running alongside Markus’ article in SBS News was a straight forward reader survey asking “Do you think Australia’s current intake of migrants is ‘too low’, ‘about right’ or ‘too high'”? Tellingly, SBS readers overwhelmingly rejected Markus’ claim that Australians overwhelming support the current ‘Big Australia’ migration program, with 77% of respondents voting that Australia’s immigration intake is too high:

If that’s not a rejection of Markus’ claims, I don’t know what is.

Over the Weekend, the former editor of The Canberra Times, Crispin Hull, also called-out the Scanlon Foundation’s polling, while arguing that maintaining immigration at such extreme levels is placing at risk the very multiculturalism that the Foundation holds dear:

A SURVEY on immigration published this week seems to fly in the face of all other indications showing that more Australians are objecting to high immigration…

The survey result is puzzling until you read that it was done by the Scanlon Foundation which, according to its website, “aspires to see Australia advance as a welcoming, prosperous and cohesive nation particularly related to the transition of migrants into Australian Society”.

So it is a pro-immigration organisation, unlike the pollsters used by media companies and some other organisations’ polls, which are independent…

I prefer the pollsters used by media companies because over the years they have been tested by polling on voting intentions which invariably are replicated by the actual vote within a couple of percentage points.

There clearly has been a shift in public attitude towards saying that Australia’s migrant intake is too high.

That should not be a surprise. Indeed it should be obvious. The Howard Government (source of so many of our woes) ramped up immigration from a bracket of around 70,000 to 100,000 to a bracket of 150,000 to 200,000. So respondents who thought that 70,000 to 100,000 was “about right” would obviously move into the “too many” group when immigration is ramped up to the 150,000 to 200,000 bracket.

There is bound to be a change of opinion as rising immigration catches up with us and overtakes our capacity to build the infrastructure for the extra population and starts to adversely affect the environment.

Until quite recently the major parties were happy with high immigration because their donors profited from it.

… the stresses caused by higher immigration might result in that very reduction in support for multiculturalism, refugees and a non-discriminatory immigration policy.

There is a real danger in Australia that some voters fed up with congestion and infrastructure take it out on multiculturalism, refugees and non-Christian, non-white immigrants.

Indeed, the sensible position for people who support multiculturalism, refugees and non-discrimination should be to support lower immigration…

As politicians respond to calls for lower immigration… support for multiculturalism; the recognition that migrants have made Australia a much better place; and a non-discriminatory immigration policy will remain as resilient as ever – something the Scanlon Foundation has found to date.

Indeed, the main thing that threatens them is setting immigration levels too high.

Very well said, and also reflects the views of MB perfectly. The growing backlash against immigration has arisen because the intake has been ramped-up to such extreme levels, in the process crushing liveability. The answer, then, is to lower immigration back to the historical levels, thus taking the pressure off housing, infrastructure and the environment.

My only minor gripe with Crispin Hull’s analysis is that he was too polite when mentioning the Scanlon Foundation’s bias. The truth is that founder, Peter Scanlon, is a major property investor and developer who benefits financially from mass immigration, as explained by John Masanauskas in 2009:

MAJOR investor and former Elders executive Peter Scanlon hardly blinks when asked if his conspicuous support for a bigger population is also good for business.

Mr Scanlon, whose family wealth is estimated to be more than $600 million, has set up a foundation with the aim to create a larger and socially cohesive Australia.

It also happens that Mr Scanlon has extensive property development interests, which clearly benefit from immigration-fuelled high population growth.

“My primary driver in (setting up the foundation) is if we don’t have growth we are going to lose all our youth because the world is looking to train people around the world,” he explains. “Instead of having stagnant growth, we’re going to have a serious decline.”

Mr Scanlon believes that governments aren’t doing enough to sell the benefits of a bigger population so he has put his money where his mouth is…

The Scanlon Foundation is just another Big Australia lobby group and any ‘research’ coming out of it must be viewed in this light.

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  1. “However, as explained by the Australian Population Research Institute, the Scanlon Foundation’s surveys capture the views of migrant non-citizens that are ineligible to vote, rather than only Australian citizens. Hence, they are very likely biased in favour of mass immigration.”

    One has to wonder if Andrew Markus, who holds the “Pratt Foundation Research Chair of Jewish Civilisation” (see below) would prefer it if non-Australian citizens were included in the survey?

    Perhaps this was the intent?

    The reason why I wonder is that the far (or radical) left’s recent preoccupation with open-boarders now matches up very well with the far-Right’s. In fact, open boarders were always the stuff of the far-Right in an attempt to crush unions and put downward pressure on wages. Recently they have become the vanguard of the radical Left and the dystopian philosophy bankrolled by George Soros and others:

    Now, what possible connection could this have with Andrew Markus, who holds the “Pratt Foundation Research Chair of Jewish Civilisation”?

    Well, one of the very interesting things about zionists and lobbyists for the State of Israel in general is that they absolutely love duel citizenship. It has provided them with an unprecedented opportunity for their diaspora to lobby for the interests of the State of Israel in many different western nations – as duel citizens of those nations. Note that one of the nations very much against open boarders for itself is the State of Israel. But the same state seems very keen on open boarders for its own citizens and other nations.

    Funny that isn’t it?

    The US involvement in Iraq that plunged the world into a pit of crap was designed by crazy neo-conservatives in a mad plan to bring democracy to the Middle East by regime change – that was concocted by dangerous idiots. This was in no small part a strategy championed by the think-tank “Project for the New American Century (PNAC)”

    It was supported to the hilt by the Israel Lobby in the United States:

    Notably the American Israel Public Affairs Committee was red hot on the idea:

    Many, if not all, were duel citizens and some operated from universities in the USA.

    So when any academic such as Markus offer ‘independent’ advice on what is in Australia’s interests in terms of foreign and immigration policy, I think ‘no thanks’. Because the last person in the world I would trust to provide independent advice is someone who holds a chair in the ‘civilization’ embodied and claimed as a ‘people’ by a foreign state that brazenly uses its diaspora to lobby for its national interests using bronze age myth. But I don’t care if you’re a chair of Chinese, Indian, American, Middle Eastern or Martian civilization, if you have skin in the game and a political agenda involving another nation then piss off. Immigration and our national identity is a democratic issue involving citizens of Australia and people who’s investment is in this nation, and not another.

    It shows either the appalling lack of judgement by the Scanlon Foundation or the lack of concern by the academic involved that this is not obvious. One is tempted to think that such things are not accidents. More information is needed about how many of these opaque interests connect up.

    I do not know anything about Andrew Markus’ citizenship, his support of Israel or the connection with immigration and his politics – but I think we should be informed of this as the more that the Scanlon Foundation reveals itself the less I like about the conflicted interests I see..

    Is the SBS survey telling enough for you Prof Markus? Do you and the Scanlon foundation know when to stop?

    Of course not. That’s the nature of the beast.

  2. There are lots of tricks to skew polling. Ask a lot of positive questions about migration first (to get people saying yes) and then ask if immigration is too high. My guess is that they have set the survey up something like that.

    Markus is the ‘Professor of Jewish Civilization’???? Professor of Jewish Business Interests more like…. Triguboff, Lowy, Pratt, Goneski… ‘nuff said.

    • Have to agree. A certain sector is behind this not-so-subtle lobbying.

      The truth is that founder, Peter Scanlon, is a major property investor and developer who benefits financially from mass immigration

      In so many issues, from climate to housing, it appears the old maxim is true:

      “The love of money is the root of all evil”


    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      Sigh,….the Jewish conspiracy theories are tiresome and just another kind of side show/Circus.
      That Jew people are proportionally over represented in Banking and other Plutocratic instutions is incidental.
      Is it a grand ethnic conspiracy that most Rub and Tug establishments are populated by large number of Females from Confucian and Buddhist societies?
      What about those Greeks with all them Milk Bars?,….eh?
      Do you see a Conspiracy there?

      Its the Plutocratic domination of the decision making process with our western democracies that is to blame for our political malaise,…not ethnic cabals.
      Working and middle class Solidarity is our only hope of heading off the reintroduction of Fedualsim 21st century style.
      The Jewish hysteria schtick just plays to the Plutocrat hand.

      • His title is the Pratt Foundation Professor of Jewish Civilization! Pratt, Scanlon, Lowy, Triguboff… join he dots.

      • R2M and Gramus, play the ball not the man. If we really want this turbocharged immigration to be reduced, then we need to base our arguments with facts (economic, social and environmental impacts). Pointing our race, religion, gender or any other discriminatory factors plays into the hands of the population ponziteers and mutes any rationale argument that we may have.

      • Would we be as accommodating to Prof Abdul Mohammed and his support of policies that enrich the well known Australian property magnates Al-Qa’qa’a ibn Amr at-Tamimi, Amr bin Al’aas, Ikrimah ibn Abu Jahl, Hamza ibn Abd al-Muttalib, Hashim ibn Utbah and Khalid ibn al-Walid ?

        Or would we start joining dots? Just sayin’

      • I would have thought that the recent example of using the movement of the Australian embassy in Israel as a sweetener in the Wentworth election might have been fresh in your mind? Why did the LNP do this? Or do you become a conspiracy theorist for asking?

        When the Greek milk bar owners get offered a similar inducement we should be equally concerned that their diaspora is being played and polarised.

        I don’t give a stuff who’s diaspora it is. China is playing the same games and that is a real concern. It is not ‘hysteria schtick’ to reject state-run influence in domestic affairs. The role of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in lobbying for the interests of Israel in foreign policy is on the record and indisputable. There is a ton of material there and tit is almost funny to suggest that this would be a conspiracy – as the agents concerned (AIPAC) have that role stated on their website!

        States manipulating citizens of other nations is old news – and well publicised too:

        Even articles in the Jerusalem Post spell it out as a polarising force of a powerful lobby in the USA:

        You think we are different in Australia though?

        If an academic at a public university involves themselves in key issues of public policy (immigration) it is totally legitimate to ask what their wider and foreign national interests are in this respect. That they specialise in a very specific ethnographic-cultural group that is paid for by big money and a ‘think tank’ (that has misrepresented Australian public opinion) has nothing to do with the cliche of international bankers. It has everything to do with recent events and what is on the record in spades and follows that manner in which public polls are used to manipulate public opinion during elections.

        None of what I have stated is controversial. Making sure that the cards are on the table is important or our democracy gets done over. That’s exactly what happens when shifting embassies becomes part of domestic politics to win votes – and I reject this absolutely.

      • FiftiesFibroShack

        Appreciate you having a go Ermo, but you’d have better luck trying to unblock a drain with a piece of dental floss.

    • interested party


      Its the Plutocratic domination of the decision making process with our western democracies that is to blame for our political malaise,…not ethnic cabals.”

      Any chance of putting names to these plutocrats? It appears to be you want to state the problem but simultaneously not face it.

    • Too many Jewish Interests that’s for sure. Say anything against those *&^%$ & their immediate reaction is to call you Anti Semitic — – and to make them more precious they’ll throw in the holocaust. Major war mongers.

  3. Scanlon is NOT just another big Australia lobby group. They are the best funded, organised and influential group.

  4. Chinese tourists and international students help drive asylum claims up 311 per cent

    Onshore protection visa applications from those who arrived by plane from the People’s Republic of China jumped from 2,269 in 2016-17 to 9,315 in 2017-18, the data reveals. Despite the surge in claims, Chinese nationals had one of the lowest success rates for protection visas, with the Department only recognising 10 per cent of those claims as being genuine.

    Surprised to see this on the front page of the ABC! Applying allows for a bridging visa while the application is being processed which may allow for work rights. With such a low success rate and many instances of non-attendance a the relevant tribunal, it it clear a loophole is being exploited.