Cartoon: By Pickering.
Labor and the Greens amply displayed their commitment to solving the boat people problem this week by passing a bill in the House of Representatives, which was never going to make it through the Senate. Rather than stick around to devise a solution, politicians headed out on their winter hibernation and will not return till spring.
Denis Shanahan splits a few hairs today in an article, which claims that the Rudd government is responsible for the refugee debacle to our north and not the Gillard one. Admittedly, it’s an improvement on the current ‘wisdom’ being touted on the left, that Tony Abbott is to blame:
The whole system of dealing with asylum-seekers - a system that worked and allowed greater refugee intakes - took decades to assemble and two years to dismantle.The Gillard government is simply, a less competent, more unpopular, smaller, extension of the Rudd government with the Greens as a coalition partner and most of the same people still leading it. Attempting to divorce its culpability from what most of the same people did with a different leader is laughable.
For 20 years Labor and Coalition governments developed bipartisan policies but over two years, when there was a lull because the system worked, the Rudd government removed the deterrent factors and substituted "sugar" for people-smugglers.
Sanctimonious claims this week that parliament couldn't rise without a resolution went unfulfilled as the real political agenda of apportioning blame and positioning parties and individuals on the high moral ground continued unabated - and as babies were rescued from sinking boats. …
… The Howard government cranked up detention, insisted on temporary protection visas, excised outlying territories from the Migration Act and introduced the Pacific Solution of offshore processing in Nauru and Papua New Guinea.
The Howard government cranked up detention, insisted on temporary protection visas, excised outlying territories from the Migration Act and introduced the Pacific Solution of offshore processing in Nauru and Papua New Guinea.
Then immigration minister Chris Evans boasted of emptying the detention centres, closing Nauru and ending temporary protection visas. With the full concurrence of Rudd, then deputy prime minister Julia Gillard and the Labor backbench, the successful Howard apparatus, built on the Hawke-Keating foundation, was taken apart.
Not only was it taken apart but Labor boasted of the failure of the measures - using false figures - and destroyed the efficacy of Nauru as a deterrent. …