Welcome to your mass immigration kleptocracy

For years, MB has pointed out to an obtuse media that wage theft, crushloading, dodgy construction, falling living standards and corruption are integral parts of the mass immigration economic model. It is pointless whining about it, regulating it, fixing it piecemeal and expecting our institutions will cope. All such efforts will fail.

Why? Because these are all features of the mass immigration growth model, not wrinkles within it that can be ironed out. The collapse of economic integrity is embedded from the lowest worker to the highest office in the land. As such, there is nothing and nobody left to fix it. This includes the media itself which is hopelessly addicted to the influx of warm foreign bodies to drive real estate listings.

Take the weekend press. It tilted at windmills all over the place as Crown and Calombaris scandals persisted. The Fake Left Saturday Paper is suddenly aghast at wage theft:

Most people know someone who has been underpaid waiting tables, caring for kids, cleaning, fruit picking or serving in a shop, but the idea persists that outright wage fraud is confined to a few rogue operators at the fringes of the labour market.

…However, according to Professor Mark Wooden of the Melbourne Institute, data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey shows almost a third of casual workers in Australia are earning less than the minimum wage. Even after allowing for measurement error, Wooden says, the number could still be as high as 15 per cent of casual workers.

With about 2.5 million people on casual work arrangements, that would mean some 350,000 people being paid below the legal minimum.

A recent study from Wooden and his Melbourne Institute colleague Dr Inga Lass suggests underpayment is both widespread and systemic among low-paid casual employees.

According to their research, these casuals earn far less than their permanent peers. In principle, casual employees should be getting 25 per cent more than permanent staff to compensate for their lack of leave entitlements. This has been a legal requirement since reforms to award wages took effect in July 2014. Before that, most awards provided for a 20 per cent premium.

But the study from Wooden and Lass shows only the highest-paid casual employees can expect to earn much more than permanents.

Among the lowest-paid 5 per cent of women, casual workers are earning a massive 27 per cent less than the equivalent permanent staff, while among men the shortfall is 12 per cent. The pay gap gets bigger as incomes get smaller. The lowest-paid 1 per cent of men working in a casual arrangement earn 16 per cent less than the lowest-paid permanent male workers.

…The study is looking only at workers’ main jobs, and thus excludes most Uber drivers and other participants in the so-called gig economy. It also excludes people aged under 21, so the results are not influenced by youth wages.

…Because the study is tracking the same group of people over a long period, it does not include many foreign students – of whom there are about 800,000 in Australia – where underpayment has been shown to be particularly rife.

This black economy comprises millions of workers, with foreign slaves at the heart of it. There is no fixing it when hundreds of thousands of cheap foreign workers flood the economy every single year. Business models everywhere have already adjusted to it.

In this milieu, getting caught is just the cost of doing business. The Saturday Paper itself is a pillar of the system. Proprietor, Morry Schwartz, is a property developer dependent upon mass immigration for his fortune and the paper is an enthusiastic supporter of it.

Of course, if you do get sprung, then an oligarchic press will readily rebuild your reputation anyway. Last week’s ABC snow job for George Calombaris was followed by another at The Australian over the weekend:

The George Calombaris restaurant empire is in a “precarious” position with the public amid a “firestorm” of negative publicity since $7.8 million of staff underpayment came to light two weeks ago, the majority owner of the business has revealed.

Radek Sali, the former CEO and part-owner of the Swisse vitamins business before its $1.67 billion sale in 2015, has also conceded he did virtually no due diligence on MADE Establishment when he bought into it in early 2017, which led to him only discovering the widespread underpayment of more than 500 employees after the deal was completed.

Sali owns most of MADE, now comprising 18 restaurants and fast-food eateries, with former MasterChef star Calombaris. He says such was the lack of financial oversight and rigour in the business two years ago than it only had one bookkeeper.

And that’s an excuse?

Meanwhile, others are whining about Crown corruption. Laura Tingle wrings her hands at the ABC:

Over the last week, there have been allegations published by Nine that Australian consular officials fast-tracked visas for Chinese gamblers, that a Border Force official was moonlighting by providing security for someone wanted by Interpol and that at least two ministers and an MP had lobbied the Department of Home Affairs to help get high rollers into the country more easily.

There were allegations, summarised in Federal Parliament, that a mammoth Australian company, Crown Casino had “links to organised crime, moneuy laundering, the improper activity by consular officials, tampering with poker machines, and domestic violence and drug trafficking on Crown property”.

There’s been plenty more, of course, rolling out over the course of the week.

Lucky, you would think, that Federal Parliament was sitting, so that the Government was in Canberra, available to be asked to questions about these shocking revelations, and of course, to spring into action to do something about them.

Five days later, the extraordinary silence from the major parties on the issue on Monday still lingers as loudly over federal politics as if someone had let off a very large cannon.

Closely followed by The Guardian:

…“They are big players and they’re used to getting what they want,” Dr Charles Livingstone, an anti-gambling advocate and longtime critic of Crown, told the Guardian. “This is new territory.”

Two days after the new allegations were published, the independent Tasmanian MP Andrew Wilkie exercised his parliamentary privilege to outline the allegations of a former Crown driver turned whistleblower, who had contacted Wilkie through his PokieLeaks website.

…He called for a parliamentary inquiry, which was backed by five crossbench MPs but voted down by the ruling Coalition and the opposition Labor party.

…Independent and minor party MPs, including the Greens, used the allegations as grist to renew calls for a federal anti-corruption body.

…The federal government, with the opposition’s support, referred the allegations to the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI), an acronym not known for its teeth.

…Wilkie had already referred earlier allegations of money laundering and drug trafficking at Crown to the Victorian Independent Broad-based Anti-Corruption Commission. The Victorian gaming regulator also called a snap investigation.

…“If the allegations are not properly responded to, the stink is not going to go away,” Livingstone said.

Of course it is. It’s already dissipating. If there is nobody there to smell the stink then it does not exist. The inquiries are smokesceens.

The Victorian effort is particularly amusing. It will have the state gambling regulator investigate the very criminal activity it ticked off as legal in a report just last year. It’s sure to be very severe on itself!

This is the truth of it. The ALP and LNP have closed ranks against Crown scrutiny and anti-corruption reform nationally not because they are “corrupt” within a clean system. They are no longer separate, nor are they political parties at all. The political normatives themselves have shifted.

The combined major party is the united mass immigration mafia that comes with the economic model, the logical end point of a system working for its own ends over and above the national interest.

This is abundantly clear in the gang’s seamless celebration of headline GDP growth even as living standards decline relentlessly per capita. A perverse form of kleptocracy that belongs in the deepest and darkest recesses of the developing world, not a modern, functioning liberal democracy.

Coming closest to the truth on the weekend was Peter Hartcher:

How good is the nexus between gambling, crime, foreign interference and Australian politics?

  • On a single gambling trip to Australia in 2015, they organised a private planeload of international crooks who brought $800 million in gambling business to Crown’s gambling tables, the Herald reported. Point one.
  • On Sunday, we reported that Crown had paid a brothel owner and alleged money launderer, Simon Pan, to lure rich Asian gamblers to its casinos in Australia. The reports raised the possibility that Pan was laundering the proceeds of crime through Crown’s gaming rooms, turning dirty money into “clean”. Point two.
  • On the same day, we also reported the former head of Border Force, an agency within Home Affairs, saying that he’d been lobbied by federal politicians on Crown’s behalf. Two ministers and another MP had asked Roman Quaedvlieg to “smooth out” border procedures for Crown’s big gamblers, he told Nine media. He refused to name the politicians. Point three.
  • We also reported that Zhou is the head of several organisations deployed by the Chinese Communist Party’s United Front Work Department covertly to establish party influence inside Australia. He travelled to Australia on at least one occasion on a gambling junket in the company of the cousin of Xi Jinping, President of China. The Australian Federal Police searched their plane but Zhou was allowed to fly out nonetheless. Point four.
  • Lewis said that attempted foreign interference by Australia’s adversaries, including cyber attacks and traditional spy craft — as well as unwelcome influence within Australia’s political system — was now widespread. Point five.
  • “The deal with Crown casinos was put in place by the Howard government in 2003 and last renewed by the Gillard government in June 2011 before it ended in 2016”, under the Turnbull government. The arrangement lapsed when Crown staff in China were arrested for breaking Chinese anti-gambling law. Point six.

The bigger problem? Australia’s major political parties – both of them – have lost any sense of outrage on the people’s behalf, lost any capacity to respond in the national interest.

Quite right. It is not a bug in the system. It is the system. The mass immigration economic model is kleptocractic, inherently corrupt, low wage, class stratified, and delivers shoddy and declining living standards. There is no need to debate or model this simple truth. We’ve just run a sixteen year experiment in it and the empirical results are in.

The Australian political economy has always displayed a dubious pragmatism and convict populism that was borderline corrupt at the best of times.

It is now devolving into the worst features of an oligarchic developing economy as well.

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


  1. Both the ALP and LNP have presided over the moral bankruptcy of the nation. They have each given up on governing and handed the job to free-market crooks via economic ideology, deregulation, cronyism and the good old revolving door.

    The answer is not an election where either ALP or LNP has a majority. Australia’s only hope is the cross-bench and ordinary citizens in the Senate to force serious investigations and changes to legislation and the constitution to protect citizens from corrupted governance. Doesn’t matter what their politics is, as long as they are neither ALP or LNP and support a reform agenda.

    • Reform it to what? A system where we all productively toil and earn money from a burgeoning tradeables sector? It’s gone mate. This is how we make our bread. This is who we are now…you can’t reform away your soul.

      • Yeah. Seems too much like hard work.

        Hard work is for poor people. We don’t do that.

      • @Peachy

        An old Soviet era saying from the old country stated that ‘hard work is for slaves and tractors’… funny how many of these words of wisdom from the ‘stupid communist times’ apply in spades today, in our neoliberal nirvana!

  2. we also have infrastructure kleptocracy, construction one, agriculture and energy, mining kleptocracy …
    what I find extremely interesting is that ordinary Australians (who are among the least corrupt people) tolerate governments (all levels) that are among the most corrupt in the developed world

    • We don’t tolerate it…we turn a blind eye as we hitch our wagon to it, in the hope ours will be the wagon that gets pulled further and faster than all the other lifters.

    • Which ordinary Australians?
      The tradies with different prices for cash and the Bunnings ABN?
      The local cash only takeaway?

      • Exactly. It’s hard for the populace to be up in arms when so many are on the take.

        Something about throwing stones in an over-priced, negatively geared, 4 “students” to a room, glass house.

      • tax avoidance is not corruption as such
        other developed nations have that too – we are still relatively quite good when it comes to low level everyday ordinary people corruption but out high level corruption is OMG

    • +1 it seems to me that aside from immigration, much of the criminality remains unpunished,. Where is the AFP and the Commonwealth DPP in all of this??? Why are these crooks unpunished? Where is the widespread enforcement of labour laws? Why aren’t these businesses wound up and their directors bankrupted? Still no one has enforced the foreign buyer laws. Etc etc. these are not, or should not be political decisions.

  3. ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

    “The recession that Gods will said Australia had to have” – Scott Morrison

  4. How good is money laundering?
    How good is corruption?

    As Canberra delegates more control to ministers and parachutes political appointees into senior public service positions they are building up a system of patronage. We shall be kissing the ring shortly…

  5. GunnamattaMEMBER

    The bigger problem? Australia’s major political parties – both of them – have lost any sense of outrage on the people’s behalf, lost any capacity to respond in the national interest.

    Hartcher went closest but even he didnt get it right. It isnt so much a matter of responding to ‘national interest’ it is identifying ‘National interest’ in the first place.

    Our politicians (Liberal, National, Labor and Green) have no concept of national interest from the get go. They no longer (if ever they were) get elected on the basis of ‘National Interest’, they get elected on being ‘Team Players’ or buying in to the ‘Management Ethos’ and in many cases they are selected for having the right ideology. Our politicians dont see ‘National Interest’ first but rather the right ideology on which they are ‘team players’

    From there the next step is to see where ‘National Interest’ and ‘team playing’ for the right ideology actually coincide. Our most recent election saw the government returned by trumping positions which could conceivably have been ‘national interest’ – lets start with :-

    A Federal ICAC (should politicians be allowed access to their superannuation schemes, access to work outside politics on the basis of their previous political employment, should they be allowed to work for foreign interests? and should not every last piece of expenditure for any item purchased with public funds or regulated donated funds be publicly accountable in real time on a publicly accessible database?).
    Banking sector reform (why are the key recommendations of Hayne being diluted?)
    Political reform in the wake of the S144 debacle (how many members on the new parliament are still potentially S144 non compliant?)
    Real Estate reform (negative gearing and CGT etc)
    Immigration Reform how much longer should the people of Australia have to view the unedifying sight of their politicians united in the name of avoiding discussion on a subject bequeathing their constituents a diminished quality of life, and parading an endless farrago of lies about immigration volumes, the effects on wages of the immigration, the captured state of our tertiary education sector in providing the vehicle for the immigration, and the stress on the public infrastructure system baked in by our politicians [including State] refusal to provide services to meet demand.

    It is time to overturn Australian politics per se (both sides).
    It is time to make our politicians accountable to the national interest
    It is time to remove (and charge) politicians found guilty of having breached parliamentary spending and S144 provisions.

    Even beyond that what ‘type’ of person do we have in parliament? Do we have a parliament full of different types of mindset which in some way is fairly representative of the different types of mindset found in everyday Australian communities? For me the answer is a resounding No! What we have in place of this is a parliament chock full of people who think they are:-

    Entitled – and cannot be questioned on almost anything they do, whether that is spending, voting on legislation, or even being honest with their own constituents. And they are particularly entitled to seek the highest paying gigs they can after politics – witness the disgraceful array of serving members quitting to become trade representatives, consuls, heads of minor Quangos, or lobbyists. How much of what they are telling us now, is a job application for later on?
    Superior to those they represent – Which affords them the need to ‘tailor’ their messaging, and to remain ‘on song’ while ‘managing’ the information the public receives from them – managing not for the public interest, but for the party or individual politicians interest
    Ethical and moral hypocrites – From lying to families and wives and porking staff, to those little jaunts into the public domain offering a groping opportunity and drinks.
    Managing the public not representing the public’s interests – meaning they almost feel they need to lie to you with every word they utter, and even where they arent you can be sure they will be thinking about if they’ve said too much. And that ‘management’ role they’ve given you means they have sort of made themselves like the loud mouthed and self absorbed and self promoting wanker in a team just like yours – where most people turn up put in and go home in relative silence just to avoid having to deal with people like that.

    Our politics stinks

    I think the only answer is revolution, and I tend to the view the only likely path to that revolution is to have our current parliament continue (as it has done for a generation now) to demonstrate it has ceased to be fit for purpose of anything remotely approaching ‘National Interest’.

      • There won’t be a revolution by the people.

        Coup d’etat: A Practical Handbook

        Coup d’État astonished readers when it first appeared in 1968 because it showed, step by step, how governments could be overthrown. Translated into sixteen languages, it has inspired anti-coup precautions by regimes around the world. In addition to these detailed instructions, Edward Luttwak’s revised handbook offers an altogether new way of looking at political power―one that considers, for example, the vulnerability to coups of even the most stable democracies in the event of prolonged economic distress.

        The world has changed dramatically in the past half century, but not the essence of the coup d’état. It still requires the secret recruitment of military officers who command the loyalty of units well placed to seize important headquarters and key hubs in the capital city. The support of the armed forces as a whole is needed only in the aftermath, to avoid countercoups. And mass support is largely irrelevant, although passive acceptance is essential. To ensure it, violence must be kept to a minimum. The ideal coup is swift and bloodless. Very violent coups rarely succeed, and if they trigger a bloody civil war they fail utterly.

        Luttwak identifies conditions that make countries vulnerable to a coup, and he outlines the necessary stages of planning, from recruitment of coconspirators to postcoup promises of progress and stability. But much more broadly, his investigation of coups―updated for the twenty-first century―uncovers important truths about the nature of political power.

        Other references: The Man on Horseback: The Role of the Military in Politics

    • JunkyardMEMBER

      Getting a revolution in a country as politically apathetic as Australia is going to be near impossible I reckon. I actually think as it gets worse people with the means will simply just up and leave.

      • … and die from lead poisoning… on the bright side, they’ll be off the Centrelink’s budget, so hey, swings and roundabouts!

  6. Kleptocracy voted on by the “quiet Australians“ aka baby boomers, who sold their sons, daughters & grandkids down the Murray Darling basin.

    • bolstroodMEMBER

      The political parties have now reached the ludicrous point where living off the handouts of criminals is essential for their survival.
      Would you seriously allow the politicians to develop aFederal ICAC to investigate themselves ?
      The Govenor General should require the Judicary to develop and oversee the body responsible for keeping our politicians on the straight and narrow.

    • Mav,

      If it is all down to the baby boomers, how do you explain the fact that the younger voters, who are now in the majority both in Parliament and in the electorate as a whole, have not repaired the damage? Here is Australia’s age distribution


      All of the things that you complain about are effectively due to bipartisan government policies, on immigration, taxation, retirement incomes, urban planning, industrial relations, etc., etc., all matters on which ordinary people have been given no say. You can blame most baby boomers for voting for the major parties, but then you also have to blame most people in every other voting age generation. See for example


      Take a good look in the mirror. Your generation voted for this, whatever your generation.

  7. reusachtigeMEMBER

    I think you will find that normal people, the good people, just don’t give a sh1t about all this stuff. There’s lots of fun sh1t to do, like, have a go at the tables at Crown, eat good food cheaply, and watch some great shows like the new Australia’s Got Talent. That 7 year old comedian was ace the other night!

  8. I’m kinda glad that we’re no longer talking about the stupidity of our elected leaders, and we’re now talking about their immense corruption and greed (although they are also stupid). The change in rhetoric will serve us well when the recession hits and the punteriate finally wakes up. Unfortunately, they will have no one to vote for…

  9. Jumping jack flash

    In my opinion wage theft, and gouging wherever possible, has driven the majority of debt growth over the last 5 years.

    As this becomes the story du jour then it means that it has been pretty much tapped out. Indeed, demand for debt is once again failing hard. What is left to grow debt to the necessary level?

    It would also explain why the banks seem to have given up and gone to ground.

  10. People know this, but all parties buy into it. Like the EU eventually, there will be little ability to pay for services and that’s were society breaks down. It’s something that can’t be discussed now either. It’s global and terminal.

  11. So 350,000 people are unemployable at the minimum wage…or put another way…350,000 people are employed by businesses that are probably unviable if the minimum wage is enforced…
    That’s a fair increase in the UR if ever they clamp down on this…which means they won’t!

    • Jumping jack flash


      Keeping in mind that the goal was infinite debt, the prices of services could simply increase to whatever is necessary to be charged to obtain the necessary amounts of debt.

      For example, you own a massage business and need 600K of debt to buy a house. (Nobody’s got 600k in the bank, so debt is definitely required for this)
      At first thought you can simply raise prices to the amount required to support paying yourself enough wages to satisfy the bank that you can afford the necessary amount of debt.

      But add into the mix hyper-competitiveness of the massage market with often 2 or 3 of these places in the same street. 600K of debt is still required, but your prices cannot rise enough otherwise your business will lose clients to the massage places down the road, and shut down.

      What to do??

      The answer to this conundrum is to pay your staff less and less, and pocket the difference for yourself to get over the line and get the 600K debt dollars.

      And yes you’re right. When everyone has too much debt to repay, and costs of living are gouged for the same aim of obtaining necessary debt, it doesn’t take much for people to forego the monthly massage if another bill comes in, like the electricity bill or private health insurance, or whatever, gouged for all it can be.

      And if the entire economy is based on debt, and services pay for it, it doesnt take much of a stiff wind for the economy to catch terminal flu.

  12. How much money washed through Australia’s casinos then goes to inflating Australian property? I can’t imagine these high rollers actually take their cleansed money back with them to the Chinese gulag. More likely straight into Dockland apartments.