25 October 2011

Press dogs attack as government whistles

There are now two groups of foreigners in this country marked as permissible prey for the hounds of the gutter press. Marked by the government, that is.

Asylum seekers, of course, those existential threats to our fair nationhood whose supreme cunning has brought the judiciary into collusion with the Government/Opposition (strike out whichever side you prefer) to force the ever-so-good people of Australia to put them up in luxury hotels and pay them double what our own suffering pensioners must live on. See the Mediawatch exposé.

As I have often pointed out, if you lock up people who are bad or dangerous or both, then asylum seekers must be bad or dangerous or both because we lock them up. Why are they locked up? As a deterrent and, as the recent ABC 4 Corners report strongly emphasises, as a punishment. Deterrence against what? Punishment for what? For coming here, simple as that. Coming here by boat is bad and the people who do it are bad. Government and Opposition blame each other for letting these bad things happen. The hounds are unleashed by both sides.

Now it is the turn of the overseas students whose crime was to buy what we were selling. Education? No, visas. For the better part of a decade the commissioned agents of a new government-backed industry went from town to town all over the Punjab signing up families who wanted a better life for their children. Sorry? What? am I suggesting they were not being offered the chance of training as hairdressers or cooks to return home to ply their trade? Has anyone told the Department of Immigration? Apparently now the good Mr Knight has revealed this dastardly plot that our innocent public servants would never have thought was going on right under their noses. Let's now set the media hounds loose on them, too. The good old Tele will oblige, of course. They will even give us the names and photos of a couple of young kids who have been charged with no crime nor committed any.

If the Tele is right (I guess it's theoretically possible) then the Department has started a "crackdown". That suggests the government is going further than just blaming the victims for its own egregious policy failings; it is intent on punishing them also. Another threat to our aforementioned fair nationhood averted, I suppose. Those Indian kids look like real crims, don't they?

Perhaps while they're in Perth for CHOGM, Manmohan Singh could quietly point out to Julia Gillard that in a couple of decades, when the Chinese have completed the task of replacing coal with renewable energy sources, Australian kids are likely to be begging for jobs in Indian restaurants -- in India. I believe the Indian press can be pretty rabid.

1 comment:

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