A lot of tears were shed in the Federal Parliament last week, without any solution to the asylum seeker issue in sight; Bob Ellis suggests one in 10 simple steps.
A lot of tears were shed, and sincerely shed, on both sides of Parliament last week; to no avail. To no avail.
Yet two things remain clear.
(1) The boats will not stop, as the boats from Peru to Hawaii did not stop, and the boats from Hawaii to Tahiti did not stop, and the boats from Tahiti to Samoa, and the boats from Samoa to Tonga, nor the boats from Tonga to New Zealand, nor the boats from Libya to Lampedusa, however many died on the voyage. Nor was our Third Fleet discouraged by what happened to the Second, nor The Fourth. Nor the Mayflower by the shipwrecks that preceded them in earlier voyages to America; and
(2) It is all about queue jumpers; and if there were no queue, there would be no queue jumpers.
The answer therefore is cheap and simple. It destroys the 'people smugglers' business model, and it costs one tenth of what is being currently proposed, and it is this:
(3) Take note not just of who are the back of the queue but who are at the head of the queue. They are Japanese waiters, Hong Kong property developers and anyone bringing in a million dollars from India or South Africa or Hungary, or the former USSR.
(4) Take note as well that we admit 178,000 of these no doubt worthy immigrants a year.
(5) Cut the number of them we take next year by 100,000, and ...
(6) Admit the queue.
(7) This is everyone in Malaysia, Indonesia and Africa who have lately applied to come here.
(8) Tell the Japanese waiters to wait six months and come in, say, August, 2013.
(9) Admit the 100,000 asylum seekers now suffering in terrible places and contemplating the whoredom of their twelve-year-old daughters, put some of them on TPVs, put some of them in caravan parks outside of country centres, and see how well they do here. And:
(10) Admit, hereafter, 20,000 refugees a year, as all parties now want.
It is a solution that would add not one more immigrant per year to our present quota. It would stop a thousand people drowning. It would put the people smugglers out of business.
And it would solve the problem.
Solve it outright, in a decision that requires no parliamentary debate, or legislation.