2 million grey migrants to give Australia economic sclerosis

By Leith van Onselen

Melbourne University demography professor, Peter McDonald, delivered another stark warning yesterday that Labor’s crazy policy to allow migrant Australians to bring their parents to Australia will lead to 2 million elderly migrants drowning the nation in blue rinse, straining public services and infrastructure, and rapidly age the population. From The Australian:

…population expert Peter McDonald estimates up to two million overseas parents could ­potentially be able to come.

“A rush on this visa would dramatically increase net overseas migration, greatly increase the ­average age of migrants to Australia and add very large numbers of older people to the population who did not speak English well,” said Professor McDonald, from Melbourne University.

“This will put pressure on ser­vices related to older people.”

As I noted yesterday, there were 7.3 million people born overseas living in Australia in 2018, according to the ABS:

Given each migrant with either permanent residency or citizenship will be permitted under Labor to bring in two parents, Peter McDonald’s 2 million estimate is probably conservative.

Worse, the stock of elderly migrants would grow rapidly over time. This is because Australia’s permanent migrant planning level is currently set at 160,000 per year, plus another 16,500 under the humanitarian program:

Subtracting children and elderly migrants under the family stream still leaves around 160,000 migrants that would each be permitted to bring in two parents every year – effectively a ‘buy one, get three policy’. While not all migrants would obviously take up this option, many would, thus adding massively to Australia’s net overseas migration.

Think about this policy from a migrant’s perspective. For a fee of only $500 a year, they can buy themselves access to Australia’s lifestyle, infrastructure and services. Who wouldn’t take up this generous offer?

Labor’s policy will be especially enticing to the Chinese. In addition to being reunited with their children, their parents can escape the tyrannical Chinese Government, while also gaining easy access to Australia’s housing market.

If this policy was allowed to run for a decade, it could easily add 3 million-plus elderly residents to Australia’s population.

The costs for existing residents would also be astronomical. As noted yesterday, the Productivity Commission estimates that the cost of the 7,000 to 9,000 parental visas issued each year are between $335 000 and $410 000 per adult in net present value terms. If we conservatively assume that the cost per visa under Labor’s policy is one quarter this level, then incumbent Australians are still facing a bill of around $84,000 to $102,500 per elderly migrant.

Multiply that figure by the millions of elderly migrants that are likely to arrive under Labor’s policy, and the cost to existing residents could easily top $100 billion.

There is no magic pudding when it comes to public finances, and the humungous cost of Labor’s policy would necessarily divert funding away from other social programs, such as the Aged Pension, Newstart, disability services, schools and hospitals funding, and infrastructure. Labor’s policy could effectively bankrupt Australia’s welfare state.

The irony in all of this is that Peter McDonald has for years falsely argued for mass immigration to mitigate an ageing population. Now he is reaping what he sowed as Labor seeks to buy votes from the very bulge of migrant voters McDonald demanded, via a policy that will unambiguously age Australia and destroy the federal budget.

With nearly 30% of Australia’s population now born overseas, courtesy of Peter McDonald’s beloved mass immigration agenda, migrants are beginning the dominate Australia’s political system for their own financial benefit.

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    • DominicMEMBER

      Actually, this very clever policy is going to deliver budget surpluse, you wait and see. Labor’s special brand of economics has foretold this.

  1. Well, we can now safely assume the big money operators in the aged care sector do not fund the research of Prof Peter McDonald.
    I also doubt that the Scanlon foundation has approved the Professor’s comments on this subject.

    • Good point.

      Maybe some pharmacy or medical group will give money to Peter McDonald now? More grandparents = more wheelchairs and more medicine.

  2. This is the same as bringing automation forward by 50 years – without the decentralisation benefits of automation and without the immigration cutting benefits of automation (foreign “students” will stop coming here by 2070 because the jobs will be done by robots).

    Grandparents who have paid no income tax their entire life, getting Medicare and subsidised public transport.

  3. Darn. Peter McDonald’s mass immigration fetish only works for his handlers if new arrivals sign up for a 30 year mortgage or buy a concrete dog box.

    However, there is a much bigger issue. Without consulting the Australian people no elites, neither the ALP, LNP or frigging Peter McDonald have the moral or democratic right to play social engineer – as they have been doing. Whether it is a narrative that plays to an ‘ageing population’ or switches in a heartbeat to a way to rapidly ‘age the population’ this has become a cynical political tool for winning votes and it is utterly corrupt and contemptible.

    Without a population policy both parties will play with the population pork barrel. Clearly it is directionless, undemocratic and driven by lobbying.

    It is forcing Australian nationals to share their declining allocation of amenity with people who have no right to be nationals – at the whim of parties and their lobbyists. Who decides the criteria for becoming an Australian? Is it now so meaningless that this is up for grabs at each election and will be determined by cynical politics?

    And is your mother and father less deserving of their share of amenity than aged relations of a new immigrant? It’s totally clear they are and it’s about time it was said loud and clear.

    Both major parties have turned against the Australian people – that much is also clear. This is creating tensions that cut at the very roots of this nation and the only way to stop it is to destroy the two-party duopoly and send the bandwagon riders like McDonald packing. This demographic genius cannot conceive that his own program of mass immigration created the demand for the ALP policy. Only a narrow minded elite who is totally ignorant of the cultural and social demands of immigration from Asia would think not.

    Peter McDonald, you helped to create this mess. Your failure to recognise an obvious bug in your own rhetoric exposes you as the fraud that you are. Did you expect that Chinese and Indian immigrants were not hell bent on bringing their family with them? Did you think that the experience in Australia was going to be different and they weren’t going to organise politically? Are you that ignorant of the cultural values you have been pumping into Australia? Do you think that this is going to promote harmonious multiculturalism?

    So much for ‘demographers’ – let’s get Australia’s population back under the control of Australians. Enough is enough.

    • ChristopherJMEMBER

      Well written Clive, enough is blogging enough. If thngs don’t improve here under Labor, we’re gone. Spain will have us

    • Stewie GriffinMEMBER

      Just goes to show how absolutely demented Labor’s parent visa policy is, if one of the Ponzi’s staunchest supporters is blanching at it.

    • Some ‘demographer’ nub (demography, such a nebulous notion) is listened to more than the Productivity Commission who has questioned, with qualification, mass immigration on the economy and living standards.

    • This policy is simply a reflection of Australia’s current demogrpahics where massive numbers of Indian and Chinese have gained permanent residency via the overseas student visa program. Now these very same people have used their demographic advantage to lobby for a policy which benefits them at the expense of the rest of the nation, specifically, the importation of their parents as surrogate child care providers, once again, multi-culturalism in a liberal democracy is nothing more than a racial head count.

      • Stewie GriffinMEMBER

        You’ve pretty much nailed it there Jim – Multiculturalism is one of the core planks that support the policy of Mass Migration that this site rails against. The pursuit of it as a policy is fundamentally at odds with the interest of the citizens of the nation that it is being inflicted on. Period.

        As I and others have said on multiple occasions:

        There is only ONE reason for the pursuit of Multiculturalism as a social policy today (from an economic perspective) – the available surplus labour pool from nations with cultural and social values similar enough to ours, have been exhausted.

        Multiculturalism is an essential plank to soften community resistance to the deliberate import of people, who will utilise the society we have built to perpetuate our own culture and values, in order to perpetuate their own.

        There are several social engineering reasons that Multiculturalism is being produced, most basically it boils down to disempowering and disenfranchising the original population from the social capital that their society and culture produced. It is a form of social engineering that is no less immoral or abhorrent as the Nazi’s pursuit of the opposite extreme.

        Multiculturalism is an inherently unstable social policy, that produces sub optimal outcomes for the majority of the population and can only gain a semblance of stability when the cultural differences are buried deeply beneath an economy that is sufficiently wealthy or well resourced to ensure that all the needs of the various competing communities (for that is what they are) operating within it are being met.

        Our elites have zero interest pursuing the interests of the people so long as they can profit from the people they squeeze in, and retain sufficient wealth to remain insulated from the civil strife and discord that arises as cultural conflict and eventually civil conflict erupts.

        “Multiculturalism, it’s who we are.” Is the chant of a populace being farmed and fleeced of their social capital.

      • fitzroyMEMBER

        Quite so Stewie, the young locals in this country have been thrown under a bus.

      • Who could have predicted that? It’s not as if the Chinese and Indians haven’t done this in the past.

  4. – It seems Labor is in despair and had to come up with something to appease to the “Big Australia” crowd. Or appease the immigrants who are already here in the country. #SAD !!!! Is Labor deliberately destroying the current Healthcare system ?

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      Do not forget that the Labor leaderships primary goal is the same as the LNP leadership,…that is to win enough seats to govern.
      Most “non immigrant” seats go to the same political party decade after decade.
      The polarization of most citizens into life long labor voters and life long liberal voters is well researched, documented and understood.
      Seats that Can be counted On are ignored with swingers getting all the attention.
      It seems all these “New Australians” are well into Swinging.

  5. I repeat.

    This is not broadly known.

    This is not in the broader media.

    We are going to an election in a few days without the electorate knowing of one of the country’s most significant policies in our history.

    • Agreed it isn’t very well known nor will it be. Labor has campaigned extremely well this time around and they control the narrative. As if they will let people start talking about this policy when it could cost them the election IMO. For me personally letting a horde of aged hit our housing, health care, services, etc and the massive burden it will take to pay for it far outweighs the revenue gain of Labors other policies/tax increases which probably won’t materialise as they thought anyway. It’s ok though – the states will be able to pay for all of it with their stamp duty revenue right?

      Haven’t seen one article around this policy at all.

      • The recent migrant cohort have proven they aren’t the wonderful consumers hoped for – hence we aren’t doing a well economically planned after all this turbo-charged immigraiton.

        All these elderly migrant consumers aren’t going to offset their costs and burden to Australia.

    • I agree I haven’t seen this on the news at all. I hope labor do not win Australia is finished otherwise. This is the worst election in living memory and a real decider on the future of this country. I hope for a hung parliament where no one can make decisions on anything.

      • That’s our only hope. LNP and Labor are planted and paid globalists not interested in Australians.

      • I’ve always wished for a “Do Nothing” party as an alternative to the other parties when this situation arises. Change for the sake of change usually breaks something that has evolved over a long period of time. Changing things normally has non-understood side effects that may dwarf any benefits of the change. Can think of a lot of Aussie campaign slogans as well for it.

    • hareebaMEMBER

      That is because those faarken muppets at the ABC refuse to do their job properly. Kunts.

      • The ABC is doing their job….just not the job you want them to do….

        There was a story on ABC breakfast news about inter-generational relations and how today’s parents are much more closer to their children than in the past, which then moved to the it “takes a village to raise a child” cliche and how traditionally Australian anglo saxon culture children moved from home early breaking up the family unit. Then went on to how we could learn from other cultures where the grandparents play an important role in raising children and what a wonderful thing it was.

        I almost spat out my coffee watching it

    • My daughters gen don’t read the media other than social, and it’s not discussed. I had one of her friends ask me about voting on the weekend. The only thing they seem to be on to is that the greens aren’t green. But as I said below, the media including the ABC seem to be cool with it. It’s like foreign policy, it’s just not discussed and it’s critical we do when the pollies ignore the briefings they get to lean further to the globalist funders I guess.

      An after thought on this, if this is what’s ok for the alp now, in three years what else do we get with no say in? The alp are pretty slick with a new policy a week from what I remember from the last lot.

  6. Go long regional bolt holes and land

    Get out and you’ll never look back

    Now I’m off to sight in a new 22wmr

    • Excellent and under rated calibre. I have a night vision scope on mine, which comes in very handy.

      • HadronCollision

        Yes. .17HMR a little loud and 22lr a little soft.
        Some big wild dogs (though unlikely to spot/hit one)
        Nice little Savage+Bushnell package.
        If we move off the land I’ll keep under an SSAA I’d say.

    • kiwikarynMEMBER

      You guys probably just put yourselves on a watchlist. Over this side of the ditch, they are currently conducting armed raids on anyone who purchased a gun after March 15. And confiscating all their weapons, even though they have done nothing wrong.

  7. St JacquesMEMBER

    Another short term fix – political ie to win immigrant votes in marginal electorates, and economic ie to pump short term demand for goods and services and to prop up the massive property bubble – but leading to even bigger problems than we now face – and they’re already huge. But hey, who gives a stuff – by then the current crop of politicians will be retiring on big pensions and rewarded by the Big End of Town with comfy board positions for work well done. The Big End of Town and the CFMEU will be putting up statues to them and the brain farts of these egoistic, mercenary intellectual midgets will be treated with reverence by the corporate media.

    It’s the way Oz rolls, coz there will always be another once in a hundred year mining boom to save us…..oh deary me….

  8. St JacquesMEMBER

    Argentina is not as far away as most people think. Seems like every politician is determined to get us there as quickly as possible. We are utterly rooted.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      We’re heading toward Brazil not Argentina. Resource rich and dirt poor.

      • Arthur, where do you think Argentina got its name from?
        Give it another decade and we will be another case study south of the equator.

  9. Mining BoganMEMBER

    This has hit the shop floor this morning. People are not happy at all. Not from the papers, 3AW has done the job.

    They weren’t happy with 200 thousand. I showed them the McDonald numbers. Lots of swearing. Lots of who pays for this. Lots of what about my elderly parents.

    If my workplace is anything to go by this rubbish could really blow up.

    • DominicMEMBER

      As someone mentioned earlier on this thread, this policy just hasn’t received the profile it deserves. I’m staggered that it hasn’t become one of the major issues in this election because it deserves to. Apart from its profile, part of the problem is that the average stiff has no idea of the costs to the taxpayer and the burden it represents to future generations.

      • I’m not staggered, people are in there own little worlds doing important things, they don’t pay attention to this stuff. A friend of mine is like this, so I said to him, if and when we get crazy Labor/Greens policy and it starts to affect you, don’t start whinging and then become concerned, i’ll be telling you to STFU

    • kiwikarynMEMBER

      “what about my elderly parents?” – Umm, they’ll be stuck on gurneys in the corridors of A&E waiting days for a bed, while those with migrant health insurance get priority treatment for admission. Thats what will happen.

  10. Hospitals are at breaking point, and the ALP will have to bear the heat when it boils over, not only in servicing times, but actual chaos. On top of that the financial costs eventually as 200k/300k won’t cut it as I was told you need at least 600k or more for elderly care once they enter aged care from a doctor I know who work that sector. But, seriously, the other two majors would do the same if they thought of it first. We’re more than stuffed as Bill will win give there is literally no MSM/ABC heat on this.

  11. China PlateMEMBER

    Labor are playing a long game
    They know Saturday is in the bag
    They know Abbott will be back at the helm in due course
    They know they have to differentiate their brand

  12. Just like the labor party in the uk. Rub the rights noses in d1versity and at the same time think about all those new labor voters.

    Like it or not traditional wh1te austral1an need to get politically organized into a party that meets their needs just like every other ethn1c group..no doubt the 1ndians and ch1nese have organized their interests and they are different to wh1tes

    • kiwikarynMEMBER

      But then they will be labelled wh1te nationalists, which are now deemed to be just as evil as wh1te supremac1sts, and they’ll be treated like terror1sts. I don’t think its possible anymore for wh1te people to organise themselves into anything, not unless you want to be excommunicated from society.

  13. Time for a new way to assess how a nation (including but not exclusively, its economy) are doing. This growth for growth sake is destroying Australia.

    At least move to a GDP per capita starting point, with other index to measure amenity, social outcomes.

    Time for politicians to promote activity in more productive ways: genuine export generating industry. A good start would be taking $1b out of the ABC budget and putting it into a medical research fund that provides export potential and health benefits to Australians (and the world).

  14. Someone commented the other day that Italian and British immigrants in the past chose not to bring their elderly parents to Australia, even if the opportunity presented itself. But, the important point is that those parents had access to good health care in their home countries. The same may not be true for the parents of today’s immigrants, so they might take up this offer in far greater numbers.

    • Recent migrant cohorts seem to be joined-at-the-hip with their partners and families – you only have to see how many Indians are on their phones during their lunch break, at work or on the train, speaking in Hindi et al, to see this.

    • That was me.

      I am not sure if British, Greek, and Italian immigrants were allowed to bring grandparents over.

      I think it is due to the horrific standard of living in India and the culture of grandparents living with grandkids.

      Good healthcare is probably available in India in private hospitals. But of course, the patient will have to pay.

      Someone in the comment section of this website said immigrants from certain countries use grandparents as providers of free childcare. The grandma would look after the kids while the “skilled” mother goes out and works for $10/hour.

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      Someone commented the other day that Italian and British immigrants in the past chose not to bring their elderly parents to Australia, even if the opportunity presented itself.

      Historically (by which I mean post-WW2, because I’m pretty sure that’s what we’re talking about), the “family reunion” type of immigration was far higher than it is today.


      (I was actually quite surprised that the current immigration numbers under family reunion were so low.)

  15. To get the Chinese and Indian vote, why not just make Diwalli and Chinese New Year public holidays?

  16. I believe it’s called a Faustian Bargain when you trade something that you’re not really using at the moment (like your soul) for something of immediate tangible worth (like moar immigrants), it’s understandable because we’ve backed ourselves into a corner where such a bargain is necessary.
    What I can’t, for the life of me, understand is the logical dissection of such a Faustian deal with the devil, suffice to say It’s absolutely necessary therefore it’s the pledge we make. Truth is we made the pledge many years ago when we deliberately decimated alternatives avenues to wealth all done to build a fragile economy. The last step in such a sequence is not logical, it’s just necessary.

  17. The ALP will reneg this proposal when in office, they will also reneg on many other “non core promises”.
    The precedent has been set by John Howard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    We’ll all (including this site) be slinging crap at the ALP just the same as we have done with this current government.
    I wanna vote Morrison and the Libs out, so I can vote the ALP in and then vote the ALP out next election.

    • They won’t. It will run for a few years before the full horror becomes apparent. Then it will be scrapped or modified after much damage is done.

  18. Immigration policy used to be about kicking the can down the road. This looks like it’s kicking the can in the wrong direction.

  19. Can we please take out the “h”. I don’t think that’s how sclerosis is spelt.
    Crazy policy idea- totally ruinous for healthcare. Will prop up private health insurance though.

  20. Is’nt it wonderful how we can look after other people better than we look after our own?