Offshore detention is a horrendous waste of taxpayer money

By Leith van Onselen

I have previously argued that Australia is an “anti-humanitarian nation”. This view is based on the following facts.

First, Australia’s foreign aid budget has cratered over the past half century:

Second, Australia’s permanent migrant intake is incredibly light on humanitarian places – just 16,250 in 2018 – but heavy on so-called ‘skilled’ migrants (162,500 in 2018):

Around 80% of these ‘skilled’ migrants come from developing nations, with most working in jobs well below their reported level of skill (e.g. driving an Uber). There is also widespread visa rorting and exploitation going on.

Therefore, in addition to being a scrooge on foreign aid, Australia’s immigration system is built around robbing developing nations of their skilled human resources – thus stifling their economic development – while at the same time accepting a comparatively tiny number of refugees.

Third, Australia’s offshore processing system of asylum seekers is unambiguously cruel – akin to holding people prison camps. It also happens to be an enormous waste of taxpayer money, with The AFR reporting that little-known firm Paladin Group is being paid an estimated monthly average of $20.8 million to provide security at three asylum-seeker accommodation sites on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea, as well as managing the East Lorengau Transit Centre.

According to The AFR, it is costing the federal government around $1,600 a day to house asylum seekers on Manus Island, and this does not include food and welfare services. Industry observers note that Paladin’s margins are “unbelievable”; most of its staff are local, with security guards getting paid only around $2 an hour:

Calculations by the Financial Review indicate Paladin is being paid on average $20.8 million a month by the government to provide security at all three sites and manage the East Lorengau Transit Centre. That amount has risen 48 per cent from an average of $14 million a month last year. A Home Affairs spokesperson said there were now 422 people housed at the three camps – 213 at East Lorengau, 111 at West Lorengau and 98 asylum seekers at Hillside Haus.

That means on a daily basis it now costs the Australian government over $1600 to house each refugee on Manus, not including food and welfare services, more than double the price of a suite at the Shangri-La hotel in Sydney.

Clearly, Australia is running an anti-humanitarian and wasteful foreign aid and immigration policy. The whole system needs an overhaul.

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Comments

    • mild colonialMEMBER

      We accept 400,000+ arrivals a year now. That’s the whole point. We can absorb a lot of people. We just don’t like the plebs knowing that so we inprison a handful and everyone thinks we’re really tough. We could cut mainstream immigration and take 100,000 Indonesians if we had to. Less inflammation if we’re more honest.

      • Sure, we can absorb more if resources, quality of life, wages and the environment mean nothing to you.

        Make it 1 mill permanent a year!

      • The difference is, as government statistics show, humanitarian immigrants are the next most likely group to remain on government benefits after indigenous Australians. Sure, it may be anti-humanitarian to point this out – but humanitarian immigrants make no economic sense.

        This said, I am opposed to working immigrants also. There are already 9 million too many people in Australia – we should have zero immigration and be decreasing out numbers over time with low birth numbers.

    • So instead we’ll be housing 100K asylum seeker in Nauru? That would cost more than the Australia GDP!!

      On a side note, if Indonesia is in such chaos, we’ll be invading.

  1. I actually have no problems at all with bringing everyone off Nauru and to Australia.

    I think Nauru is insanely expensive

    I think Nauru is unnecessarily cruel

    I think the treatment meted out in Nauru is punishing people who would most likely actually make a real contribution to Australia, and would generally be quite grateful for being allowed into Australia (those with identified security issues exempted)

    I think Australia’s immigration framework currently rewards lifestyle aspirants who make generally little contribution (because the framework within which they make their contribution has been compromised by an obsession with pumping up real estate prices, the promulgation of debt, the gouging of large corporates, Federal government ineptitude [particularly on energy and education} and the fundamental distortion of our monetary, education, taxation frameworks to run a population Ponzi which embeds the price distortion in all of these markets, and embeds the economic distortions – that is fundamental uncompetitiveness – that these imply)

    I think Australia’s immigration framework currently makes it far too easy for legitimate visa applicants to bring family members (particularly aged family members) to Australia to represent an impost on Australia’s health system, which they have never contributed to the funding of, and which subsequently represent a burden on Australian taxpayers now and in the future.

    I think Australia’s immigration framework currently rewards passport collectors who have no intention whatsoever to making an economic contribution to Australia for the here and now or at any time in the future – apart from as a holiday/retirement/money laundering/corruption claim avoidance opportunity, and that Australia’s current immigration framework not only permits this but actively encourages it – and again imposes the costs on existing taxpayers, and on existing asset prices [mainly housing] to the detriment of those also seeking such assets for social purposes (as opposed to speculation purposes or the exile purposes mentioned hitherto)

    I think Australia’s immigration framework currently enables those coming to Australia, often for completely meaningless educational reasons – where the education will not make any significant contribution to Australia (and most likely the individual) – to subsequently become a resident, which leads to the deformity of Australia’s once well respected education system.

    I think in the overall scope of things the people on Nauru are a fairly minor issue and that the national obsession with those on Nauru is effectively a look over there ploy by those profiting from the far larger population Ponzi mechanisms.

    I hope that explains my thoughts.

    • Agree with your mainstream immigration points but your Nauru claims are ridiculous Gunna. 6 meals a day, phones, internet access, air conditioned units, medical care that is often better than many regional Australian towns – all paid for by Australian taxpayers – is hardly cruel and abhorrent. Freedom of movement on the island and free to leave any time they wish, just not to Australia as they have been finally determined not to be ‘genuine’ refugees. Totally gulags.

      The hyperbole around this subject does nothing for this argument. One only needs to look to Europe and the Southern US border to see why it’s unfortunately necessary. Sure, we should shut them down over time due to cost alone but until they are sent elsewhere which under law they are required to do they will remain. Bringing them onshore will require us to re-open Xmas island or build another centre at great cost, so you’re just passing the problem down the line.

      Most are economic migrants as much as the frauds that come in through the front door and just as much ‘passport collectors’ as many others. Dont believe me then take a trip out to many enclaves in Sydney and Melbourne and see how just how many of these third worlders arent doing much of anything except using infrastructure and services they dont contribute to, Or working menial skilled jobs. Amazing how you can just slap the term ‘refugee’ on anyone foreign and they’re instantly a poor victim that deserves the world. Case in point: Chinese rorting of temporary protection visas.

      Sure, I support staying out of military intervention in foreign countries for economic plunder but I don’t support socializing the losses of said war, massive refugee populations, onto the citizens of western nations who had nothing to do with it.

      The refugee immigration model is just as much about privatizing profits and sociailis losses as our mainstream ponzi is IMO.

      • mild colonialMEMBER

        Have never understood this ability to distinguish refugee arrivals as different to other immigrants. They’re all a mixed bag of humans.
        They say their life is miserable and they don’t have freedom in the camps and they’ll suffer if they go home. If you don’t believe that at least start calling for us to quit the Refugee Convention, that’s the proper thing to do.

      • 100% support withdrawing from it. It’s outdated and was only as a response to WW2. It’s not fit for purpose in today’s world of 7 billion with near instant mobility.

        Go regional in my opinion, let us set our own terms or help them in their country as an alternative. Importing people from halfway across the world doesn’t work, just a vanity project.

      • GunnamattaMEMBER

        Sorry I don’t really buy any of your assertions

        From your supposition about conditions being better than many country towns in Australia, and six meals a day…….. There are ample reports of sexual abuse and psychological abuse, there are regular and ongoing reports about their access to communications being restricted (in terms of where they can go and what they can do) and regular reports about their communications (internet and phone) failing for considerable lengths of time, there is ample indication they are actually being denied decent medical care.  The government makes it exceptionally difficult for journalists to go to Nauru and report on their conditions, it has similarly made it difficult for politicians, bureaucrats and eminent persons to see what conditions are like, and ultimately if conditions there are better than Australian country towns then why not take those refugees to the country towns and say ‘welcome to Australia’.  

        Through to your assertions about the refugees being passport collectors……..The most recent data has them predominantly from Iran, Stateless, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Somalia,  Iraq Bangladesh and Myanmar. All of those nations have major civil issues which could/would lead to some of their inhabitants becoming refugees due to them having concerns about their lives if they remained.

        Given that all refugees on Nauru and Manus combined we are talking about maybe 1200 people I completely fail to see where there is any value whatsoever in keeping Nauru and Manus operating at such prohibitive expense.

        If need be, build a centre somewhere remote in Australia tell the refugees they are to remain there until they are processed and that if they are identified away from that location then they will be sent offshore, and have the money currently being pumped into Nauru and PNG being pumped into some remote town in Australia – where the facility would presumably provide employment, and where people visiting the refugees would represent some form of economic stimulus.

        As I said above, these people are more likely to make a worthwhile contribution to Australia once they are confirmed as legitimate refugees, than the corruption beneficiaries we import off the plane and ‘processed’ through our Universities.

      • Ah Yes, those reports from usually open borders-aid agencies relying on statements from detainees who have a vested interest in being released. While some may be true a lot is not.

        They remain there because they never entered the Migration zone. They’ll require a high court injunction to be moved to Australia at great cost to the community. They’re also finally determined and have been found not to be genuine refugees, whatever that ambiguous term means. Ashmore Reef was excised by Labor in the Rudd years by Bowen. It helps to read the Migration Act which you clearly haven’t.

        Letting unidentified people into the community without knowing who they is absurd. Your assertion is that they could be effectively monitored which we know is bullsht given the fact immigration doesn’t have the staff and can’t even monitor the mainstream migration program.

        Many of those sexual assault were either detainees on each other or PNG guards, a country reknown for heinous sexual assault. Not excusing the behaviour but trying to unxerstand it. Third world v third world – no surprises there. Plus many of those countries you listed are much nearer to a signatory country than Australia, tbus undermining the UNHCR and their own motivations.

        “They’ll contribute more.” Thats an assertion if I’ve ever heard one. Given that we recently sent some of them to the richest country on earth and then they requested to go back to Nauru because the US government would not give them free money, you can pardon mine and others cynicism.

      • You’re Quote – “onto the citizens of western nations who had nothing to do with it”- Really not meany to be derogatory but -you seem to come to conclusions that are full of it.
        The rest of your post is a post of uninformed ignorance.
        Quote -“as they have been finally determined not to be ‘genuine’ refugees”
        i suppose you’re going to also claim these boarding hostels have pools, room service and saunas included because after all tropical hotel living and what living a life of luxury entails – fanatic and spurious logic there.
        If you lived in the tropics you also would require air conditioning and mobile phones are used in most third world countries and probably the most practical means for communication based on cost.

        ‘Medical care that ends in potential death’ – yeah thats something they don’t qualify for – they’re not real humans even tho they’re there under control of Australian Govt and don’t tell us you’re dailyterrorgraff or even Australian politician lies that they administered by Nauru and PNG because Federal High Court has ruled they are under Australian control.

        Quote -“free to leave any time they wish” except on Nauru they locked up at night and you’re denigrating attitude that they’re -“free to return home” except over 90% have been found to be genuine refugee which means they are fleeing from potential violence, didn’t have any citizenship or unsustainable poverty.

        Quote -“see how just how many of these third worlders arent doing much of anything except using infrastructure and services they dont contribute to, Or working menial skilled jobs” – So you think that their previous occupations will be accepted in Australia’s regulated and bigoted employment network system. You must be ignoring the basics like engaging and learning English language skills and the fact that they have families where the mother didn’t previously employed but cared for the children. This adaption takes years before they’re got jobs and can afford expensive rent and Australian living costs.

        Suggest you take a neutral stance rather than a bigoted one and digging deeper to find the real truth behind politicians claims and frequent lies and exaggerations. Spare me if you read the Meordeoch papers like ’The Australian’ or main tv channels or frequent Sky after Dark.
        You’re post is mostly regurgetated mistruths and cruel and unjustified fears.

      • The cruel part is they have no idea what will happen to them, and by dribbling hope of settlement now and again, they are stuck in limbo. It’s mental torture.

        For those very few who fail to get asylum, we lock them up indefinitely until they’re willing to go back.

  2. What do you mean ‘waste of taxpayers money’?
    It continues to perform its sole function of preventing a debate on the overall rate of immigration to Australia perfectly.

  3. Kiwi’s are not renowned for their ability to fly, so they overlooked this essential element of flight.
    It always pays to check that you can land
    Before you take off
    An Air New Zealand flight to Shanghai has turned back several hours (about 4) into its journey after discovering it did not have permission to land in China. Flight NZ289 carrying about 270 passengers left Auckland shortly before midnight on Saturday only to return about 8am AEDT on Sunday.
    It turned around several hours into the flight.
    This service did not have Chinese regulatory authority to land in China,” the airline said.
    WW permission to enter Chinese airspace denied ?
    Remind anyone of Ding Duck antics?

  4. “That means on a daily basis it now costs the Australian government over $1600 to house each refugee on Manus, not including food and welfare services, more than double the price of a suite at the Shangri-La hotel in Sydney.”

    You could say the same thing about prisons. Completely ignores their actual function – deterrence.

    I agree we could boost our refugee intake. However we should be selecting them from the many millions patiently waiting in refugee camps many of who have far less means and ability to get here via paid people smugglers.

    • “Completely ignores their actual function – deterrence.”

      But offshore detention DOES NOT DETER people from coming!!

      The boats are still leaving, the people smugglers are still operating. What is stopping the boats landing is ‘turn back’. This government is spending a very large sum of money detecting and turning back boats.

      If the boats are still trying to get here, then detention centres does not work. So why do we need to treat other humans like that?

      • mild colonialMEMBER

        That’s right. Our border protection is effective so it’s killed the fear of boats argument. Set the refugees free.

      • Citation needed for your boat departures.

        What rubbish on your second point. Detention is also for those already in Australia and a whole host of other migration offences. You’re also essentially saying rely entirely on the navy/abf and transferring the cost without any layer of redundancy, when we have a massive coastline and small population ripe for exploitation. You still need manpower to intercept boats.

      • And to extend the analogy, this is like saying we don’t need prisons because the police are really effective at stopping crime.


      • this is like saying we don’t need prisons because the police are really effective at stopping crime.

        Sure – and if the police were good at stopping crime, we absolutely wouldn’t need prisons, because no crimes would have been committed to lead to imprisonment. But police are rubbish at stopping crime, and aren’t really expected to stop crime. Instead, they attempt to catch perpetrators of crime once the crime has been committed.

        mild colonial’s contention is that our border protection is the equivalent of a police force that actually stops crime from occurring, which is to say, a police force unlike any currently or previously in existence.

      • “Sure – and if the police were good at stopping crime, we absolutely wouldn’t need prisons, because no crimes would have been committed to lead to imprisonment.”

        Incorrect. Because there is no severe consequence for committing crimes (in our case there is a reward) you would have a lot more people attempting crimes. You then have to have an extremely large police force, and still accept that many crimes will succeed.

        This is what would happen. Many more boats would set off. Even if most are intercepted, nothing to dissuade them from trying again. Exponentially larger numbers would try and make the border impossible to police.

      • Of course it’s the case – if the police were 100% effective at stopping crime, no crimes would be committed, so no convictions would occur and the jails would all empty and close down. Maybe they would do it via some sort of community engagement program, such as are often effective at reducing crime, but never quite as effective as that so far irl.
        Possibly you’ve confused ‘100% successful at catching criminals’ with ‘100% successful at stopping crime’ – they are totally different. If you’re 100% at stopping crime, there are no criminals to catch .

        mild colonial’s contention appears to be that our border protection is at or close to that level. I’ve no idea if he’s right, but that’s his actual contention. In this case, border protection is actually more like a set of home security measures applied to every house in some location that make burglary impossible, in which case the number of people bothering to try it would drop, regardless of the penalties for burglary. (if the location was only the size of a suburb, they’d probably go to the next suburb with laxer measures – I suspect that’s all our border protection measures really need to achieve)

      • “Detention is also for those already in Australia and a whole host of other migration offences.”

        I think you are under the false assumption that seeking asylum is a crime!!

        So if we have these detention centres, why do we not send all the asylum seekers who arrive by plane to these off-shore centres? Why don’t we ship off all the student/tourist visa overstays to these detention centres?

        “Citation needed for your boat departures.”

        33 boats have been turned back since the current policy started. Yes, it is well down on the previous policy (300 boats), but what would it be with turn-back only? More asylum seekers arrive by plane each year (10,000+) than have ever arrived by boat. So why is there no fuss about them? Why are boats political but planes not? So why do we let people rot in prison for seeking asylum (which is legal) by boat only? It is mad policy, made madder by the MSM and right wing shock jocks.

        https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1819/Quick_Guides/BoatTurnbacksSince2001

        https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1617/Quick_Guides/BoatTurnbacks

        https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1415/asylumfacts#_Toc413067443

    • You could say the same thing about prisons. Completely ignores their actual function – deterrence.

      The point of prison is not deterrence, it is isolating those who do harm from those they would harm.

      Or is the only reason you’re not a bank robber or serial killer fear of getting caught ?

  5. We should just withdraw from the UN Refugee Convention. That way no one would come here because they could just be sent home again.

    In return, we can meaningfully increase our formal refugee intake.

    • So we reverse the polarity on our immigrants – the refugees come straight in and the conventional route, wealthier, skills based, family reunion or student type immigrants that have been flooding the country for the last decade are frozen out. Given we’re a country predisposed to a rort, how long do you give it before every current Chinese or Indian migrant (the bulk of the current front door entrants) starts declaring themselves a ‘refugee’? The junk trade will skyrocket.

      • mild colonialMEMBER

        Doesn’t matter, if we quit the convention we could deem them all not refugees and put them in planes home at less cost than the current caper.

      • MC has it right – we will be outsourcing the determination of whether they are a refugee to the UN (as we already do for 18,000 people a year).

  6. No what we should be doing is withdrawing from the UNHCR completely and setting our own regional terms up. The only nations we should be helping out are our regional neighbours and in short term arrangements, ie you stay here until issues have resolved to a point where you can return and rebuild. Not come here and do everything you can to stay in a first world country because the social economic benefits suit you.

    People seem to forget than those in third world PNG absolutely despise those on Manus, particularly when they see what they are getting from Australia – a country they greatly sacrificed for in WW2 while they continue to live in squalor.

    If anything we should be focusing efforts on aid to West Papua, a genuine crisis, but we’d much prefer to look the other way and pay off dodgy Indonesia and send them bogans on holidays.

    • If we withdraw from the refugee treaties we should withdraw from making refugees by making war overseas, something we have been doing since the end of WW2.
      Indonesia , Malaya, Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Syria
      and there will fewer refugees.

  7. How soon we forget.
    So we should just accept thousands of unauthorised arrivals arriving by boat along with the odd un-seaworthy vessel going down..
    A few facts: At the height of 7 boat arrivals a day at Christmas Island. We were spending 350k alone on one flight transferring detainees to mainland detention centres scattered all over the country. The processing those arrivals required art least 300 IHMS staff and 150 odd Immigration staff on loan from their normal work areas,The Serco contract to run detention centres was on track to be 9 billion over the contract life of 10 years. Genuine and destitute refugees continued to languish in camps. Many boat arrivals had relatives already in Australia and had been refused visas before leaving their own countries on their own passport, travelling to Indonesia or Malaysia and then boarding boats to Australia. Many detainees also got on boats with pre-existing illnesses looking for medical treatment in Australia. The money spent on offshore detention centres is a pittance to what was spent when boats were arriving. No one will ever know how much was spent because it came out of different spending areas. In short, you have no idea what you’re talking about.

    • It’s an expensive vanity project for the champagne left in inner Melbourne and neoliberal right in Potts Point – privatize the dopamine and narcissism from refugee virtue signalling and socialise the losses, the costs and social/economic tensions, onto everyone else.

      Kerryn Phelps is the personification of this movement. Rich wanker representing the richest electorate in the country telling the plebs in Western Sydney who can’t even afford a house in the country they grew up and paid taxes in to make way for the third world, you heartless raycis, while she and Lucy Turnbull enjoy the wafts of their own farts from behind their gated communities in Mosman.

      Day of the lamppost draws nearer.

      • Hi Stephen and Brian, where do you get the data from? (Brian’s regarding costs and Stephen’s regarding conditions on Nauru and integration – or lack of – into communities as per earlier post). It’s such an emotive issue I find it hard to get statistics or information that don’t have some political or self-serving NGO overlay (NGOs on both sides, mind). Is there something/somewhere that a layman like me can refer to, free of bias, to get better educated on the subject?

    • mild colonialMEMBER

      Interesting argument I haven’t heard before. The point is it’s inhumane to lock people up, here or there, and it’s expensive. The right used to love having temporary visa type people applying for refugee status because they worked cash in hand and undermined unions and conditions, while living in their community. What’s happened to that? Well we know they still love it. They’ve mainstreamed it. Anyway letting people live in the community while they’re assessed is much cheaper than camps. Not refugees? Send them home.

      • I was involved in the management of the detention services, medical and facilities contracts in a few detention centres. Monthly milestone payments to Serco alone were in the millions. On Nauru in another capacity, I can state that most of the incidents were detainee against detainee. there was a high amount of self harm as there was a perception amongst detainees that once you were medivaced to Australia you would not come back. In many instances detainees assaulted escorts when they were being transferred back to Nauru. All you read in the MSM is crap put out by refugee advocates.

  8. “Anyway letting people live in the community while they’re assessed is much cheaper than camps.”

    Cheaper, but anyone who is a security risk would be doing a runner as soon as their feet hit pavement.

  9. It is preposterous to co–mingle the big Oz program with illegal immigration.

    We should not accept either of these two occurring in Australia.

    They are separate issues, and need to be dealt with on their intrinsic merits.

    Big Oz is basically a program to keep wages down while making various groups prosperous – it is not actually delivering real economic growth – note the high social and economic costs and no benefits to most existing citizens, its funded by the sale of Oz assets and does not even deliver any added manufacturing base.

    Illegal immigration of any form, including supposed refugees should never be accepted. All such people should be returned to their last place of temporary/permanent residence, turned back near the coast with guns blazing no matter how many children are used as a human shield, or jailed for life in inhospitable regions with minimal care for their welfare. There are tens of millions of people claiming refugee status for various reasons, including for economic reasons. Simply accepting them would ultimately transform Oz into a total basket case (which is happening to a large extent under the Big Oz program). The number of refugees worldwide will grow massively as populations continue to explode in Latin America, Africa, much of Asia and Mos-lem countries.

    If we are spending too much on refugees detained in overseas facilities then we should reduce the amount spent. And it would be appropriate for the supporters of refugee immigration to pay for these people rather than the rest of Australia (a kind of “consumption” pay tax imposed on them, perhaps by selling their assets, in recognition that the feel good that people get from refugees flooding the country is a form of personal consumption).

    The cost of feeding, housing etc refugees is pretty high no matter where they are kept – putting them offshore is one solution, but if they came here the best place would be to put them in the middle of Oz with no air conditioning so that they can really enjoy the local environment.

    What Oz gives as aid to other countries is a separate matter from refugees and big Oz – why co-mingle all these issues when they are not related. Only emotional and confused people do this, unless they are deliberately trying to misinform others to gain support for a point of view.

    The cheapest way to end illegal arrivals by boats is to simply sink them before they land in Oz – nobody would be stupid enough to follow and the traffic of people into Oz by boat would immediately cease, thereby saving a lot of money that could be used to provide aid overseas.

    Over the last 25-30 years Australia has built up very successful lobby groups for the refugee and immigration industries which have captured the support of the emotionally weak and irrational and those who basically do not give a rats about the future of the country.

    Bring on the brickbats so that I can cry me a river.

    • On your last point you are 100% correct – we now have what’s called the Refugee Industrial Complex led by Julian Burnside and Ian Rintoul – which relies on victimhood and perpetual outrage as a business model. It’s the same “foreigners have as much rights as citizens” madness that the skilled and student visa industry rorting has, just a different flavour.

  10. The “offshore processing centres” are highly profitable concentration camps.

    Highly profitable for the folks being paid to run them – I remember when G4S ran them, there were reporting periods where concentration camp profits were 100% of corporate profit; ditto with Transfield (aka Broadspectrum aka whatever they are called now).

    The offshore torture profit centres reap massive, massive dividends to the folks who run them whilst imprisoning people for indeterminate periods of time. Big costs to taxpayers but this is straya, where we never wring our hands on spending money on muzzies if the spending makes the muzzies fucking suffer

  11. There are currently waves of illegal migrants rushing the US southern boarders, Europe has had millions of illegals over the past few years, which is now caused countries to see the likes of Brexit and vote in right-wing governments, not to mention start movements like Yellow Vest protests (which is getting worse each week) – reading between the lines third-world populations are arriving en mass.

    We are very lucky to have the setup we do – I agree with the above – get out of the UN Refugee Convention before it destroys us here too. It’ll be yet another Labor policy they will “fix” when they get in and a way for them to boost immigration when the economic migrants stop coming.

    • Spot on about Europe – actually immigration in all its forms is literally changing the place beyond recognition, especially with local birth rates well below replacement level. People can argue that the percentages arriving through refugee channels are small but it all adds up once someone gets residency and can then bring members of their family over, or perhaps bring a spouse in from abroad (all at huge cost to the host nation in terms of housing, health, welfare etc). Western countries can only afford to be so nice – there have to be tight limits on these flows when there are literally billions of people in impoverished nations who would love to come to our shores, given any opportunity. We need to think 30-50 years ahead and ask ourselves where the policies of today will lead us in terms of demographics etc.

    • mild colonialMEMBER

      Europe has a shrinking population and can absorb a couple of million new people. Isn’t this the dream America ran for 100 years? A bit of social messaging and they can cope with what they have received. If they’re not pro market growth at all cost they better start telling ya about it. I doubt they’ve hit that ratio of newbies to citizens that we’ve had in Australia for fifteen years – and having done our bit, we should now lower.

      • As you say, Europe’s population is either shrinking now or about to (UN population prospects projects Europe to peak in 2021, initially fall a few hundred k, before starting to fall about a million per year from 2025).

        Their rate of migration per head is about 1 fifth of ours, so room to go up, and realistically it’s now the only way to avoid a substantial fall in population inside a fifty year window as the stock of potential mothers is now highly depleted.

        Anything less than doubling the migration rate seen in 2010-2015 and keeping it there sees a shrinking Europe, most likely permanently. Doesn’t look like it will be down well with voters, though, so maybe they should start that messaging about going ex-growth pretty soon.

      • Europe already has a very high population density and negligible wilderness areas. It could do with a population reduction. Also the refugees coming in are highly unlikely to be net contributors to the economy unless you believe in the broken window falacy of GDP.


      • Europe …could do with a population reduction

        Yes – and it’s virtually certain to have one, even with an increase in immigration from where it is today, as it is unlikely to be able to increase the amount required to prevent population decline, and especially unlikely to be able to sustain such an increase.


        Also the refugees coming in are highly unlikely to be net contributors to the economy unless you believe in the broken window falacy of GDP.

        I don’t believe in any such thing. However, I also don’t believe that economists wedded to the idea of growth forever are fully taking into account the implications of Europe shrinking from the mid 2020s onwards, followed by Asia beginning to shrink from about 30 years after.

  12. I have spoken to some guards on Manus. These mainly Iranians said the worst things imaginable. Eg we threaten to tape women if we ever get to australia.

    Did anyone see the 730 report a few years ago? About 2014. Its on youtube. They said…f australia. Remember 9 11. Seriosuly charming people

    • Give em Kerryn Phelps for a while – that might have some beneficial effect for all involved in this sick refugee industry.

      Years ago the govt and newspapers stopped reporting rapes by Mos-lems, and now report only where wheit are doing it.

  13. @gunnamatta
    “I actually have no problems at all with bringing everyone off Nauru and to Australia”

    Trouble is, as soon as you do that, the people smugglers will fill Nauru up again, then you’re back to where you started.
    This is what Labor did, the refugee places in the Humanitarian program was overwhelmed by the flood of illegal maritime arrivals being granted refugee status, self selecting themselves a place on Australia’s refugee resettlement program.
    The result of this embarrassing illegal maritime flood was the Labor party had to increase the size of the Humanitarian program from 13,750 up to 20,000 and a caseload of 30,000 (from more than 50,000 illegal arrivals) illegal maritime arrivals here with their refugee claims still to be sorted by the incoming Coalition. Almost all those 30,000 are still wandering around today on bridging visas.

    The answer is to abandon the refugee resettlement program (about half of the Humanitarian Program) it’s just virtue signalling.
    The money spent on resettling refugees in Australia will help 6 times more refugees in the camps overseas.
    I think that is a better way
    .

    • mild colonialMEMBER

      A lot of the reason boats don’t come is to do with trade offs we’ve made with other countries. We’d be in a stronger position internationally if we didn’t have to make these deals. We don’t know what their cost is.

      • The boats don’t come at four, five and six a week as they used to, because the Coalition won’t give permanent residency to any illegal maritime arrivals regardless of any appeals outcome.The few boats that still attempt to come here are turned around, this is also deterring the illegal arrivals and people smugglers.
        We don’t have to give refugees resettlement, it’s purely voluntary for UNHCR signatories to do so.

        The deals you mention USA, Cambodia won’t occur if there are no illegal arrivals in the offshore detention centers.
        There will be no new arrivals to Nauru, Manus Island if illegal maritime arrivals know they can’t get permanent residency in Australia.

    • Most of the displaced Syrians were happy to move to the nearest safe place. The refugees on Nauru and Manus moved across several countries to try and reach Australia. All their comforts are met courtesy of the taxpayer and one would think that they are safe from the persecution they fled from. They live better than a lot of Naurans. There’s a hospital in Nauru (funded by us) for both the new detainees/immigrants and the locals. Difference is that they can come to Australia for treatment. The locals just die.

    • Have you ever socialised with or seen Afrikaaner farmers operating (and treat their workers)? Drive around the SA farming areas and read the farming business magazines.

      I have worked with some very tough Oz farmers who are pussy cats beside many Afrikaaner farmers.

    • I’ve been reading the history of The Zulu wars, A very comprehensive book “The Washing of the Spears by Donald R Morris.
      He clearly states that the Boers themselves DID NOT FARM. They used native labor and cattle breeding agreements with Black African tribes . They spent their time hunting and loafing, and went to church on Sundays.

  14. The problem is there will always an endless stream of refugees (or in Australia’s case government run population Ponzi scheme), there’s always a sad story behind every refugee…I want a better life, I want a better life for my children, a better life for my elderly parents, I want…I want…I want. The trouble is the host nation has to foot the bill via the tax payer, I pay…I pay…I pay = standard of living decline, so how far are you willing to allow your standard of living fall before you start to question why is it so?. Offshore detention is just for show…smoke and mirrors for the public, a few hundred have to suffer so ten’s of thousand can pour in through the front door. And make no mistake the boats engines are firing up in anticipation of a Labor victory. Cap immigrant rates to normal levels and remove the desire of refugees by investing in their countries. Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

    • Yes Daily Tele.

      Corroborated by someone I know.

      Your point?

      The problem is that refugees bring their attitudes with them.

      Young – middle aged males (and this is the demographic who commit most of these offences) are usually fairly light users of the health system.

      However……the fact is that overseas immigrants are over-represented with Mental Health issues (perhaps not surprising) and also over-represented with drug/ alcohol issues.

      This means young-middle aged male immigrants are fairly heavy users of the health system.

      And this is exactly where the problem begins. It is compounded by the fact they are never held responsible for their transgressions- it is always their mental health problem (which lacks a much needed objective tool to diagnose),or their drugs …….

  15. 1. Pull out of the UN refugee convention – this will cancel our legal requirement to take them, stop them using our legal system against us
    2. Take half of the money we are currently spending annually on refugeee detention and put it towards resettlement camps close to the borders of the troubled countries where at least culture differences and distance from their home are smaller. Bang for buck it makes more economic sense to spend our dollars in 3rd world countries than in Australia.
    3. Take the other half of the money and spend it on schools and hospitals in Australia.

  16. Wow,
    I am gobsmacked by the fear, and vitriol of some of the comments here.
    This is over 1200 wretched people incarcerated for years for being refugees.
    We deny them access here and in New Zealand .
    You heartless bastards.
    When the fires and floods and droughts overwhelm us, when we are starving because the cattle are dead and the crops failed, I hope you remember your words today.
    I will.

    • I think I will stand and fight the fires and floods and die here – that is what it means to call a country home, you don’t run to another when the going gets tough.

    • No fear or vitriol from me.
      1200 people who managed to travel half way around the world (literally), bypassing all the countries in between, paying with cold hard cash.
      They come all this way for one reason only – Australia is seen as a soft touch and extremely generous.
      I’m more than happy to help out the worlds (billions) of refugees but it needs to be done in a sensible, cost effective, non-emotional way.
      If you think those countries from who we take refugees would come to our aid in a crisis, you are deluded. Wake up.

      • And yet last year alone 28,000 people who could afford to buy airtickets flew into Australia and claimed asylum. This lot might have stopped the boats but not so much the planes.

      • Which is why I said we need to remove ourselves from the UN refugee convention so we have NO legal obligation to take these people.

      • “1200 people who managed to travel half way around the world (literally), bypassing all the countries in between, paying with cold hard cash.”

        There is no rule that says refugees can’t have money. And in many cases, the countries between where they are fleeing and Australia have not signed up to the UN Refugee Convention. In light of what is happening to Hakeen al-Araibi in Thailand, would you trust seeking refuge there?

      • @Jason – Never said they weren’t allowed money. So should we be helping those who have money to travel around the world or the ones that don’t, given we can’t help everyone of the billions of refugees.

      • “And in many cases, the countries between where they are fleeing and Australia have not signed up to the UN Refugee Convention. ”

        And right there is the centre of the pupil of he bullseye of the problem.

        If many countries refuse to take refugees, can those countries that do really be expected to do it al themselves? Is that sustainable? Given limited arable land, climate change, worsening drought, cities running out of water and turning on desalination plants…. Given also the limited ability of any population to absorb people from a different culture and maintain overall harmony.

        The harsh reality is many countries from which people flee have too high a birth rate to be sustainable. This creates problems including excessive pressure on resources, poverty (i.e. GDP per capita) and a low quality of life.

        We are seeing this in Australia right now. Many immigrants don’t work (mix of can’t and don’t), have large number of children, and are supported by welfare.

        So we have many migrants fleeing from their country, only to continue the same non-sustainable lifestyle in Australia.

    • Indeed.

      One wonders how many of the armchair warriors, when facing death and dismemberment for them and their families, would take the time to follow the correct process rather than just grabbing their loved ones and doing the bolt.

      (Meanwhile, they’ve all probably spent the last twenty years or more voting for the same politicians who have been busily disassembling Australian society because they were tough on refugees.)

      But it is the arguments that people would prefer to try out one of the most tightly policed immigration paths on the planet, with zero chance of settlement, rather than the simpler path taken by 200k people a year, which are strangest.

      Uncle Rupes must bookmark discussions like these for those special nights when he needs a little bit extra to get going.

      • “One wonders how many of the armchair warriors, when facing death and dismemberment for them and their families, would take the time to follow the correct process rather than just grabbing their loved ones and doing the bolt.”

        There are many would be immigrants facing persecution and death in their home countries, true. There are many more making claims which are subsequently disproved. Trying to paint them all with the same brush does you no credit at all.
        This rorting has been going on for years, and is quoted by the ABC and SBS no less.
        https://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-03-15/chinese-fly-into-australia-to-make-27dodgy27-asylum-claims/3892416
        https://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/punjabi/en/article/2018/02/13/man-jailed-using-false-identity-obtain-citizenship
        https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-10/chinese-nationals-claiming-refugee-asylum-surges-311-per-cent/10590478
        https://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/nick-cater/visa-seekers-stay-while-they-manipulate-our-system/news-story/c1ff498969bc524a4e8f6b041e31de35

        Sometimes people flee their country for very good reasons
        https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/we-already-gave-him-refugee-status-how-murder-suspect-delayed-extradition-to-us-20190207-p50w6n.html

        “(Meanwhile, they’ve all probably spent the last twenty years or more voting for the same politicians who have been busily disassembling Australian society because they were tough on refugees.)”

        No, I’m trying to preserve our society – not so much for me, but for my kids. I fear that you will understand this one day, but by then it may be too late.
        What. You mean I would have to work and no welfare. I’ll stay here thanks.
        https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6344109/Seventy-asylum-seekers-Nauru-REJECT-chance-wont-free-welfare.html
        https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/rendezview/are-asylum-seekers-refusing-the-us-welfare-shopping/news-story/a813126f422043f598bfbf529a40c7e0

        There has bee a spate of child sexual abuse and rape among the asylum-seekers on Nauru. For some of these people, the only problem with Nauru is its proximity to Australia
        https://www.sbs.com.au/news/government-sued-over-alleged-repeated-rape-of-child-in-nauru-detention
        And see just what we have to look forward to by letting people in on “medical grounds.” Hopefully the doctors concerned will be personally sued if this bill gets up, 2 doctors sign a future criminal into the country. They should carry vicarious liability. Won’t happen of course. There will be the usual NSW Health “no-blame” (i.e. no responsibility) culture, and the usual white-wash of a “system problem.”
        https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/asylum-seeker-allegedly-groped-and-threatened-nurses-in-sydney-hospital-after-nauru-transfer/news-story/f93c81a016e4753a6cfd40b8b2385088

        “But it is the arguments that people would prefer to try out one of the most tightly policed immigration paths on the planet, with zero chance of settlement, rather than the simpler path taken by 200k people a year, which are strangest.”

        Not tough enough it would seem! Not nearly tough enough.
        https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/truecrimeaustralia/crimeinfocus/how-isis-suspect-changed-two-letters-in-his-name-for-freedom/news-story/3cb6575422b034c17f2298b14a920980

        “Uncle Rupes must bookmark discussions like these for those special nights when he needs a little bit extra to get going.”

        Not you in this picture is it Doc?
        https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/rendezview/shocking-gaffe-exposes-docs-real-agenda/news-story/cf426671cebd7b6713c31ad98b9237e5

      • Children under 16 and their mothers should not be expected to defend their country against violence. I understand any culture sending them to safety, so that some biological memory of them survives in the face of annihilation.

        Of course, if their original culture is annihilated the children and mothers should integrate fully to whichever culture hosts them and, if their original culture prevails, they should return to it.

        As far as I understand, most children and mothers claiming refugee status are allowed into Australia. The bulk of those still in detention are able bodied men.

      • The vast majority of refugee claims are supported.

        Plane arrivals are not relevant to the discussion.

        The plural of anecdote is not data.

      • The plural of anecdote is more anecdotes, which does not solve the problem. Have you heard the phrase ‘making a rod for your own back.?

        As others mention above, if wealthy countries like Australia really wanted help developing, impoverished or war-torn nations we would help them help themselves and provide local long term solutions.

      • “As others mention above, if wealthy countries like Australia really wanted help developing, impoverished or war-torn nations long term we would help them help themselves.”

        Agreed. And I think that is what we are trying to do via foreign aid.

        One of the purposes of recent military intervention in the Middle East was to help establish stable governments. Unfortunately (and probably inevitably), these military interventions have mostly been unsuccessful in this regards. These interventions have been complicated by the presence of multiple overlapping and conflicting agendas. They have been further complicated by the involvement of other countries (e.g. Russia). There has also been mission creep, and at times pragmatism as meant ideals have been lost. Despite all this, it was the hope of many that peace and stability could be restored, and this would mean fewer refugees. Unfortunately, we did not ever really understand the complexity of many longstanding issues involved.

      • steve – well, the ME is a bit of a cluster. I think the West’s good intentions were mostly a veil for controlling the flow of oil. It’s little wonder Western intervention has been unsuccessful, in the end, as whichever way you slice it the West was encroaching on the sovereignty of other nations. This said, there has been fighting in the ME from pre Sumerian times – 7,000 years at least. I recon find an alternative to oil and leave them to sort their own issues out.

      • Military initiatives are most successful when there are limited goals and agendas e.g. the defeat of Germany, Italy and Japan in WW2.

        In the ME, there have been too many overlapping agendas – access to oil, security, retaliation post-9/11, humanitarian, denial of access by Russia…… There have been lots of interests and agendas.

        In addition, the ME missions have lasted for too long, and have become overtaken by events.

        Added to all of the above os that the ME has been a basket case for centuries, and western minds don’t understand the complexities involved. This is not like Germany where a western people went off the rails for a few years under a despot, and who were quite happy to get back on the rails. The ME has never been on the rails, and aren’t interested in a new future.

        USA appears to becoming increasingly independent of ME oil reserves, which will at least remove one agenda.

      • Look at you two virtue signalling your socks off. It’s adorable.

        As previously mentioned, asylum seekers arriving by plane are not relevant to the discussion.

        Nobody disagrees that it would be better not to have refugees in the first place (ie: don’t create them and/or fix their problems in situ). But the people who get their knickers in a twist about refugees, tend to feel similarly about foreign aid, which is why that has also been steadily cut down (to the actual detriment of our national security, particularly with our nearest neighbours). There’s usually a significant overlap with those who like to go on foreign military adventures, as well, especially once a bit of fear about other “cultures” has been created.

        I particularly like the portrayal of Germany in WW2 as some sort of weird aberration, even though western “culture” is drenched in bloodshed and replete with examples of systemic slaughter and horrific atrocities.

      • drsmithy – all human culture is drenched in bloodshed and slaughter, it’s not specifically a Western thing. Violence is a part of being human, it’s probably a part of all biological existence.

        I’m not sure what we were virtue signalling about, we were both just expressing opinions on the ME, which is tangentially related to this overall discussion as it is where most of the offshore detainees originate from.

      • all human culture is drenched in bloodshed and slaughter, it’s not specifically a Western thing.

        Yes ? I wasn’t the one trying to portray any particular group of people as being overly violent vs not, that was you two.

        Violence is a part of being human, it’s probably a part of all biological existence.

        Whoa there. There’s violence (eg: killing an animal to eat it or make clothes, killing a person to defend your own life, even killing to take someone’s stuff, etc) and there’s cruelty (torture, killing without reason, etc).

        I’m not sure what we were virtue signalling about, we were both just expressing opinions on the ME, which is tangentially related to this overall discussion as it is where most of the offshore detainees originate from.

        LOL.

        You are both busily having a circle jerk about how awesome western “culture” is compared to other “cultures” and how people in those “cultures” couldn’t possibly understand or cope with western “culture”, despite our best efforts to bring it to them, so any ideas about them ever settling and integrating here are fruitless. With “culture” being a fairly obvious dog whistle.

      • drsmithy – I feel like you are putting words in my mouth here – I was critical of Western intervention in the ME, I have always felt it’s very duplicitous. I have long believed the main reasons the West is even there is because of petro dollar collusion between the US and Saudi Arabia, along with the close ties between Mossad and the CIA.

        You may need to reread what I post – I am no cultural supremacist. I am a cultural realist and as such understand that multiculturalism is an impossible concept. Cultures are singular groups of people that share a language and beliefs. Cultures can be ethnically diverse – for instance my ancestors were form Northern India and they adopted the Western cultural ideals found here – why would they leave their own culture if they didn’t want a change?

        My biggest gripe with all migration is that there are currently about 9 million too many people in Australia, so I think we should accept no more humans at all until our numbers are back under around 15 million, for the environments sake. My big gripes with refugees is why aren’t the men staying in their own lands to fight for them and why is anyone assuming to come here uninvited? Can I come in your house uninvited? What about come to a family event you put on in a hall? Nations are an extension of culture, which is an extension of society, which is an extension of family – why are we so willing to protect our families but not our nations?

        Yes, in case you didn’t guess, I am very opposed to globalism, multi national bureaucracy and corporatism. I am not opposed to globalization which occurs naturally as nations trade with each other, only extra national groups which presume to sit above nations (especially democratic nations).

      • Let it slide unmester.

        You can’t reason someone out of a position they haven’t reasoned themselves into.

      • I am a cultural realist and as such understand that multiculturalism is an impossible concept. Cultures are singular groups of people that share a language and beliefs.

        LOL. “Cultural realist”. Why does that sound familiar…

        Multiculturalism works fine. We live in a multicultural society. We were settled by a multicultural society that had been absorbing cultures for millennia before it got here. Our strongest ally is another multicultural society with the same kind of origin story.

        You talk of “sharing a language and beliefs” yet would claim two people as different as, say, Tony Abbot and Sara Hanson Young are both “Australian”. The measure is so fluffy as to be useless for anything except reinforcing bias.

        You will try and point to a “common belief” in something like, say, democracy or equality before the law, yet even there they will differ significantly, and one could trivially find people from a complete different cultures with similar beliefs.

        This is particularly true when one looks at principles rather than specifics. There are plenty of people in Australia quite willing to portray a broad subset of women as vengeful disruptors and haters of men. But try to compare them to Muslims in their own societies doing the same thing to women they perceive in the same way and they’re usually violently offended.

        Or let us consider one of the scarier groups of people out there: Reactionaries. These are the guys (well, mostly guys) who think the Enlightenment was a really bad idea and want to roll us back to a kind of medieval feudalism. Yet despite being demonstrably opposed to pretty much everything that defines our culture, you would undoubtedly consider them “Australian”.

        People from different cultures can and will live together quite harmoniously. You can only support your position by drawing entirely arbitrary lines around particular groups of people and insist they are a “culture”, while simultaneously ignoring both the disagreements between people within the line, and commonality across the lines.

        My big gripes with refugees is why aren’t the men staying in their own lands to fight for them and why is anyone assuming to come here uninvited?

        Because dying for nothing and leaving your family and children alone in the world unsupported is irresponsible and unhelpful ?

        Refugees don’t so much “assume to come here uninvited” as are “driven here under threat of extinction”.

        I see no shame in fleeing the face of certain – or even merely likely – death. It would be absurdly presumptuous for me to judge anyone who had been in a position of genuine fear for their lives.

        Can I come in your house uninvited?

        If a random girl turns up on my doorstep bleeding, half naked and screaming she’s been raped, then yeah, I’m probably going to let her in rather than push her back into the street and yell “go back to where you came from”. You may prefer the latter action, in which case our moral baselines are probably far too different to have any meaningful discussion.

        Refugees don’t come in uninvited. They arrive, we isolate them (in increasingly inhumane conditions, to try and act as a deterrent), we verify their claims, and _then_ we choose to let them in (or not). Just like we do when some random stranger rolls up on our own personal doorstep.

        Nations are an extension of culture, which is an extension of society, which is an extension of family – why are we so willing to protect our families but not our nations?

        Demonstrably, by actual harm caused, the biggest threat to this nation’s prosperity and culture is from a minority of its own people. Immigrants (and especially refugees) aren’t even on the radar of anyone being objective. The endorsement of hyper-individualist “I’ve got mine” attitudes. The massive selloff of public assets and undermining of public services. The economic settings that have produced increasing income and wealth disparity. The destruction of workers rights and casualisation of work. The deliberate polarisation of politics and society. These things were not done by immigrants, they were done by true-blue, fair-dinkum, Aussies, often with multiple generations of citizenship behind them, and mostly for greed.

      • drsmithy – I can’t even begin to understand what you are on about. Of course Abbot and Sarah Hanson Young are the same culture, which is Western and culturally dissimilar to Islam. I would agree that the West is in cultural decline but it’s more because of people who seem to think like yourself than anything else, not because it never actually existed.

        steve – seems letting it go is the best course of action.

      • I can’t even begin to understand what you are on about.

        I’m fairly confident that’s because you’re not even trying, but I prefer to give the benefit of the doubt, so let me put it in really simple terms.

        You can’t define “culture” in a meaningful and useful fashion. It’s an arbitrary distinction adjusted as necessary for the purposes of discrimination.

        Within a society there are people whose views will be wildly divergent. They will have more differences than commonalities. Across different societies there will be people whose views overlap substantially. They will have more commonalities than differences.

        Nobody is suggesting “western culture” “never actually existed”. The point is that it – like most – is not fixed and unchanging, but an almalgamation of multiple cultures over time and space. Ie: multicultural.

        The biggest threat to our society is from our own (see above about “more differences”).

        PS: People fleeing death and destruction aren’t cowards trying to steal from your biscuit tin and they don’t get to enter the country simply by dint of turning up and claiming to be persecuted.

      • You can’t define “culture” in a meaningful and useful fashion.

        That statement is entirely subjective. I think culture can be defined in meaningful and useful fashions. Further, I don’t think it’s primary purpose is for discrimination – quite the opposite, I think the primary purpose is to keep social cohesion.

        Like I said, the core points of cohesion for any culture are shared language and beliefs. Here is a very simple explanation of why Abbott and Hanson Young are from the same culture and Islamic culture is different. All people in Western culture (whether they believe in it or not) refer to the primary monotheistic deity as God, Islamic culture refers to it is Allah. The belief in or understanding of this deity is immaterial – it’s the way the belief is referenced with common language (or common language roots) that defines the culture.

        Roman, Greek, Egyptian, Sumerian – they shared similar pantheons but had their own names for the deities. Citizens of all of those civilisations each had their own understanding of the deities, some, like the heretic Pharos, even became monotheistic and some Greek philosophers discarded all deities in favour of naturalism – all of that is immaterial as their cultures were defined by the common way they defined the deities, even if only as a point of reference for a different belief.

        Of course, mythological deities are not the only concept that can be used to show how shared language and belief defines a culture but they are something that generally occurs in each culture, present and historical, so they make a good example.

        Further, in the same way I am not here to judge if Western or Islamic culture is superior (they each have their good and bad points), holistically I won’t judge whether Sumerian, Egyptian, Greek or Roman culture was superior – only that they are distinct and only that, historically, they all fell when the cohesion of their values was questioned from the inside and diluted by excessive amounts of different cultures becoming entwined with them. Yes, culture changes over time. It’s just the way human civilisation works, it expands and develops before eventually becoming so decedent, corrupt and self loathing that it destroys itself from the inside.

        You and your ilk are the self loathers – the emperors who open the gates to the barbarians – history will judge you as such, even if you don’t recognise it now. Posters like Steve who are more Nationalistic (or cultural supremacists as you think of them) are akin to the military emperors who try to hold onto the glory of a civilisation in it’s decline. I lean towards the nationalism, as I think it is a far more grounded set of beliefs than the those held by the globalist open borders cultural Marxists. We all have our bias – but ultimately I am a scribe that tries to understand how it all fits together.

        As for people fleeing death and destruction – they are not cowards only if they are brave enough to admit to themselves that the culture they are fleeing is wrong and adopt the culture they flee to. If they believe in the principles of the culture they are fleeing and still flee it, they are cowards – otherwise they would stand and fight for what they believed.

      • That statement is entirely subjective. I think culture can be defined in meaningful and useful fashions.

        Let’s look at your definition above: “singular groups of people that share a language and beliefs”.

        So where do we fit in culture-wise with the French or Germans ? How about if you’re making that judgement in the context of the entire world ?

        You use religion as an example of beliefs, yet there are multiple religions, not to mention atheists – who have seriously fundamental differences in belief to the religious – happily living within our society.

        Further, I don’t think it’s primary purpose is for discrimination – quite the opposite, I think the primary purpose is to keep social cohesion.

        My point was that *your* definition is so *you* can use it to arbitrarily discriminate.

        Within our own society, there are people who do not agree with some of its fundamental principles – freedom of religion, equality before the law, democracy, etc. Are they part of our culture ? How can you claim they hold shared beliefs ?

        All people in Western culture (whether they believe in it or not) refer to the primary monotheistic deity as God, Islamic culture refers to it is Allah. The belief in or understanding of this deity is immaterial – it’s the way the belief is referenced with common language (or common language roots) that defines the culture.

        This is like saying American and Australian cultures are _fundamentally_ different because here we call them capsicums and there they call them peppers.

        You and your ilk are the self loathers […]

        Your premise is broken. You are presenting a straw man fallacy.

        As for people fleeing death and destruction – they are not cowards only if they are brave enough to admit to themselves that the culture they are fleeing is wrong and adopt the culture they flee to.

        But the culture they are fleeing may not be the culture they lived.

        If they believe in the principles of the culture they are fleeing and still flee it, they are cowards – otherwise they would stand and fight for what they believed.

        Again, nothing productive is achieved through suicide.

        By your logic the Jews should have stayed in Germany and died in even greater numbers. The survivors were cowards.

        You are not so much a “cultural realist” as a “cultural absolutist”. Extremist positions are rarely correct.

      • drsmithy – Fighting to for a cause, even to death, is not suicide. Suicide is explicitly taking your own life. I do not think you use words correctly, or understand what I have written.

        I say ‘with common language (or common language roots) that defines the culture.’ and you say ‘Australian cultures are _fundamentally_ different because here we call them capsicums and there they call them peppers’. English has more than one common language root, therefore a broad culture can use different terminologies for items within sub cultures. Note that the idea of a sub culture is not the same as mixing broad cultures to form a multi culture.

        Perhaps you can understand it if you look at it this way, if every human culture was equally multicultural, cultural diversity and ultimately the idea of culture would no longer exist. You may be indoctrinated to think that a single human culture is a good thing, I think that it is far too close to the warnings presented in 1984 and by the Borg in Star Trek – diversity and conflict between humans is exactly what evolves us sociologically, without it we would stagnate.

        You have not used strawman correctly, either. I was expanding the argument to describe current positions with historical context. That is not the same as refuting an argument with a separate argument.

        You know Jews in Germany are a totally different thing – Semitic peoples never had their original cultural roots in Europe, it’s why the Jews wanted to be resettled in Israel, rather than return to Europe – they wanted to return to their cultural roots. Your argument here is far closer to a strawman than mine ever was.

        I think the only reason you think I am an extremist is because you are an intellectual fundamentalist – as Steve did note above, you reasoning is more like a instilled belief than anything learned. I think this also leads you to believe that your arguments are far more erudite than they actually are. I engaged with you because I thought I might be able to learn something new from the exchange but I have not.

      • Fighting to for a cause, even to death, is not suicide. Suicide is explicitly taking your own life. I do not think you use words correctly, or understand what I have written.

        Good grief.

        I’ll rewrite it for you, Captain Literal.

        “Again, nothing productive is achieved through not escaping certain death when you have the chance.”

        English has more than one common language root, therefore a broad culture can use different terminologies for items within sub cultures. Note that the idea of a sub culture is not the same as mixing broad cultures to form a multi culture.

        English is a Germanic language. Not afraid to borrow from others, to be sure, but it’s root is Germanic.

        If your metric is language roots, that means Australia falls into the same “culture” bucket as Iran, India, Russia and Eastern Europe.

        Perhaps you can understand it if you look at it this way, if every human culture was equally multicultural, cultural diversity and ultimately the idea of culture would no longer exist. You may be indoctrinated to think that a single human culture is a good thing, I think that it is far too close to the warnings presented in 1984 and by the Borg in Star Trek – diversity and conflict between humans is exactly what evolves us sociologically, without it we would stagnate.

        I have no idea what you are trying to say here, but I will point out that a) the first sentence is nonsensical and b) I have never even suggested anything similar to “a single human culture is a good thing”.

        You have not used strawman correctly, either. I was expanding the argument to describe current positions with historical context. That is not the same as refuting an argument with a separate argument.

        Yes, I am, and no, you weren’t.

        You were assigning a position to me (and others) – “you and your ilk are the self loathers…” – which I (and most likely they) neither hold nor have ever expressed, and then attacking that position.

        That is pretty much a textbook example of a straw man fallacy.

        You know Jews in Germany are a totally different thing […]

        No they’re not. People fleeing persecution are people fleeing persecution. They are not cowards for fleeing certain death.

        I think the only reason you think I am an extremist is because you are an intellectual fundamentalist – as Steve did note above, you reasoning is more like a instilled belief than anything learned. I think this also leads you to believe that your arguments are far more erudite than they actually are. I engaged with you because I thought I might be able to learn something new from the exchange but I have not.

        LOL. Yes, clearly I have a lot to learn about “reasoning” and “learning” from someone so literal they can’t even get past the use of “suicide” as a succinct version of “certain death through inaction” and someone who relies mostly on conservative copypasta. To say nothing of apparently thinking culture is both genetic and deterministic.

      • You do realise that communicating on a forum is literally a literal transaction, so it makes perfect sense to assume what is written is literal.

      • You do realise that communicating on a forum is literally a literal transaction, so it makes perfect sense to assume what is written is literal.

        You do realise that this judgement applies to any form of written media and is therefore ridiculous ?

      • haha – it’s cute you are still around this conversation. I’m just taking the piss now, have given up on taking the debate seriously – which is actually a bit of a landmark for me as I’d generally debate until the cows come home but I did start to feel like I was debating the existence of god with a priest, which ultimately isn’t going to go anywhere, right?

      • Only because I get an email when you reply and not a lot of thought is required.

        “Debate” implies a level of engagement with the counterpoints you have not demonstrated.

        (And you have the cheek to criticise me about the meaning of words.)

        You still haven’t defined “culture” in a meaningful and useful fashion, nor dealt with the problem of people with completely divergent beliefs co-existing ostensibly within the same culture.

        But let’s pretend for a minute you have. What’s your actual point? What would it mean if a) you really could pigeonhole anyone into a particular “culture” and b) behaviour based on that classification – ie: within any culture – was at some useful level consistent and predictable ? Then what ?

    • “When the fires and floods and droughts overwhelm us, when we are starving because the cattle are dead and the crops failed, I hope you remember your words today.”

      I’m not sure of your point here. Is your plan to eat these people when the cattle die and the crops fail?

      • We may find ourselves in dire straits at some time and reach out to others for succour.
        I hope they are more compassionate than some on this thread.

      • bolstrood – and if we find ourselves in dire straights the last thing we need on top is more humans. People can help people to a point – but when there are too many people in a given area it becomes a liability for surviving catastrophe.

        As has been mentioned above, there are more than 7 billion people on Earth – way too many to be sustainable and a total game changer from when UN policy was originally devised.

        It seems to me undeniable that Australia was a more liveable place when there were 15 million people here, as per my youth, than it is now with 25 million. We have already crossed a comfort and environmental survivability threshold – why would anyone wish to make it worse, for any reason?

  17. I agree offshore detention is a total waste of money – there needs to be an immediate and effective way to return any unwanted migrants to their place of departure.

      • Well, if it has been thought of, why is no one trying to implement it?

        And no, I don’t mean return them to some Middle Eastern warzone – obviously no-one comes straight from the ME to Australia but return them to Indonesia or wherever it is determined they left from.

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