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130 responses to “Andrews again”

  1. mole

    Is Marion Le stretching the truth with her statement in the last link?

    “..pointing to a case in which 18 Sudanese are reportedly living in a two-bedroom house..”

    I would have thought the combined benefits for 18 people would easily stretch to more/larger accomodtion. Its hard to get a handle on her statement without other details, but it does seem a little over the top. refugee advocates do their cause no favours when they do tell fibs, or neglect to tell the full story.

    This seems more proof of the evil that is the howard government.
    “despite a recent $200 million increase over four years announced in this year’s budget.”

    But on less points scoring note why should Australia take groups which are prcieved to be problematic?
    if there is a extremely large pool of people available for re-settlement into Oz what is the problem with a country stating its preference for certain groups?
    I know its a provocative question but what are the downsides to such an approach?

    Also given that Amnesty, no friend of the Lib government, openly advocated/praised this “swapping’ of groups it seems any accusations of pandering or dog whistling seems a little premature.

    http://abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/08/19/2008856.htm” (From the ABC)

    The following is from a chain email I have been sent, its pure bullcrap, but shows what stupid lies are being peddled by the anti-immigrant side.
    I would however ask the mods on this site to delete it if it is too offensive, however bull like this should be seen to be countered. I dont know what the figures are for re-settlement but its nowhere near what this claims!! I do not support what follows, but its out there and should be countered for its errors.

    “This is interesting:

    It is interesting that the federal government provides a single refugee with a monthly allowance of $1,890.00 and each can also get an additional $580.00 in social assistance for a total of $2,470.00.

    A single pensioner who, after contributing to the growth and development of Australia for 40 to 50 years, receives only a monthly maximum of $1,012.00 in old age pension and Guaranteed Income Supplement.

    Maybe our pensioners should apply as refugees!

    Let’s send this to all Australians so we can all be ticked off and maybe we can get the refugees cut back to $1,012.00 and the pensioners up to $2,470.00 and enjoy some of the money we were forced to submit to the Government over the last 40 or 50 years.

    Please forward to every Australian to expose what our elected politicians are doing – to the over-taxed Australian.”

    If anyone here can link me to the correct figures it would be appreciated, id like to set the bloke who sent me this straight, before he leaves site in the next few days.

  2. hc

    Is the claim of Andrews true?

    There are very high crime rates associated with some of these African immigrants. If Andrew’s claim is true are you saying we should accept violent, socially-difficult, black Africans because to do otherwise would be ‘racist’ or ‘discriminatory’. Shouldn’t we pick immigrants who will make good citizens? Or are you saying we should select whoever applies without discriminating good from bad settlement prospects? Or are you saying that because these people have traumatic pasts we should admit them irrespective of their settlement or criminality prospects in Australia. What about needy refugees from elsewhere (e.g. Iraq) with better prospects and who are better educated?

    The 2006/07 migration program has 144,000 regular migrants and 13,000 humanitarian migrants – both rates are at record high levels – much higher than under Labor. Is it wrong to want people with skills who will make good citizens?

    I just cannot see that it is.

  3. Peterc

    Andrews is a racist dill. Banging on the racist “we don’t want people like that here” drum again is just a rerun of Tampa style politics. He should be sacked immediately for these comments, as he should have been for his bungling over Haneef’s visa withdrawal.

  4. Resin dog

    hc said

    ‘The 2006/07 migration program has 144,000 regular migrants and 13,000 humanitarian migrants…’

    These numbers from a government that has consistently said that it doesn’t have and doesn’t need a population policy.

    Extrapolating these figures suggests over 1.5million extra people will lob here in the next ten years. Deserving or not, WTF are they going to drink?

  5. Helen

    hc, the kid who was bashed to death was reported as a nice kid who’d just completed his VCE and had just been interviewed for a job for a gap year but who intended to go to uni after that. Not quite the gangsta type. The kids who bashed him to death were all caucasian.

    So, tell me again who is threatening?

  6. Ronald Raygun

    Andrews is fucking disgusting. There is no other way to describe this man.

    The fact that these people are provided for by charities rather than the Department of Immigration is a clear indication that we are letting these people down. These people need our help and we’re turning a blind eye to their problems and then claim that they’re precipitating some sort of crime wave.

    It happened with the Vietnamese, the Lebanese and now it’s happening with the Sudanese. As Phong Nguyen said, the Vietnamese have done a pretty good job of integrating, it just takes time.

  7. hc

    Common Helen you can do better than that? Using the death of this unfortunate youth to justify an immigration program. It is irrelevant.

  8. patrickg

    Harry, I would be interested to see any figures you have on immigrant crime statistics.

    I’ve studied this, and the data we worked showed that, in fact, immigrants are less likely to commit crime than the capita (when geography is taken into account), and that they actually draw less benefits than their naturalised brethren.

  9. The Worst of Perth

    Dear oh dear.
    There are very high crime rates associated with some of these___
    insert appropriate country for the appropriate decade over the last 50 years.

    And their food smells funny too

  10. Gummo Trotsky

    The kids who bashed him to death were all caucasian.

    First I’ve heard that – the most I could get when I checked on the case via Google news yesterday was that two men and a girl had been arrested in South Australia. And their ages.

  11. Mark

    patrickg, the most comprehensive study into ethnicity, immigration and crime was done by the Australian Institute of Criminology. You can read it online. Immigrants to Australia commit fewer crimes than those born in Australia. There are variations according to country of origin. There are also big methodological issues in accurately measuring crime. Anyway, people might like to look at Ch. 4:

    http://aic.gov.au/publications/ethnicity-crime/ethnic-ch4.pdf

    The whole report is available here:

    http://aic.gov.au/publications/ethnicity-crime/

    Most Sudanese immigration has been subsequent to 1999 when the report was published, but there’s no warrant for assuming a different pattern based on anecdote alone.

  12. Mark

    Ps – as far as I know the author of the report is not a former “union boss”!

  13. Andy

    Those 7 foot black guys are scary mofos. I prefer cute little Asians.

  14. Helen

    Common Helen you can do better than that? Using the death of this unfortunate youth to justify an immigration program. It is irrelevant.

    If you’d read the news reports hc, you’d know that his death was used by Andrews, in an interview, to “demonstrate” what “troublemakers” the Sudanese are. I’m pointing out that this boy was not a troublemaker, and that maybe we have some caucasians in the community who are the problem.

    Do we have a Sudanese problem, or a racism problem? He had just completed his VCE and was headed for uni. For god’s sake, why is he supposed to be a problem, and his attackers not?

    This link is also interesting:

    http://www.theage.com.au/news/national/police-move-to-quell-gang-war-fears/2007/09/28/1190486520125.html

    Note that the copper says that groups are interpreted as gangs. My kids hang about in groups with other kids, too. But they’re white, so that’s OK.

  15. hc

    Wrong again Mark. Severe problems in Melbourne and Perth widely documented. See e.g.

    http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,21166482-661,00.html

    The report you cite as you say doesn’t cover the migrants being discussed so why bring it up?

    The claim that the irrelevant report was not written by a ‘union boss’. Who are you responding to? Not me – I didn’t say it was.

  16. Mark

    Joke, Joyce.

    The report you cite as you say doesn’t cover the migrants being discussed so why bring it up?

    Because the report establishes:

    (a) Over a long period of time, the incidence of crime among immigrants is less than that among the Australian born population and Sudanese immigrants are clearly immigrants and thus in the absence of evidence to the contrary, it would be reasonable to infer that the pattern would be similar;

    (b) the report demonstrates the methodological issues involved in establishing the ethnic and national origin of those charged with offences as well as the problem of equating that measure with the incidence of crime.

    I’d have thought that anyone wanting to make claims about this might consider the trends and difficulties documented in the existing literature.

    I don’t know that a “survey” conducted by a News Limited tabloid is necessarily a reliable source for assuming that there are “Severe problems in Melbourne and Perth”.

    It’s also unsafe to assume that being a recent immigrant or being from “the Horn of Africa” or whatever is the prime cause of an individual being charged with a crime. That ought to be obvious.

  17. Helen

    Those 7 foot black guys are scary mofos. I prefer cute little Asians.
    And again, just like before the Tampa election, the racist trolls come out of the woodwork, emboldened by their truly disgusting government.

    Need I say again, the African boy, the scary mofo, is the one WHO HAS BEEN BASHED TO DEATH. Do you know who scares me, and I travel every day to and from Footscray station? Not the tall Africans. It’s the grey-faced, snarling, f-wording, Bundaberg-can-toting “white” junkie or methhead.

    OK, I’m off, as I remember the MSN messageboards back in 2001; you can talk till you’re blue in the face but the racist trolls will still be the same. And THAT is what is causing the problems and the violence in these poor suburbs. But they will not listen.

  18. gandhi

    Nobody has commented yet on the likelihood that most of the early African “refugees” we accepted were white South Africans fleeing the country (with their money) when the ANC took control. Plus white Zimbabweans fleeing Mugabe.

    I wonder if anyone in government keeps stats on the colour of incoming refugees’ skins? Could be an interesting FOI story there…

  19. gandhi

    Helen, I think that was satire. Maybe tasteless, but satire.

  20. Amanda

    Perhaps “Andy” has a track record I am not aware of, but in absence of one I was assuming he was being ironic. Pollyanna that I am.

  21. Mark

    Yeah, I thought so too, gandhi.

  22. Mark

    Crossed with Amanda!

  23. Andyc

    Peter c: “Andrews is a racist dill. … He should be sacked immediately for these comments,”

    Better:

    He should never have been allowed anywhere near the top of a major political party.

    The creeps who let him into the party, let alone the cabinet, have no respect for this country, its people, our reputation or the concept of leadership by example.

  24. Alister

    hc wrote:

    There are very high crime rates associated with some of these African immigrants.

    Prove it. And no, a single Herald Sun article does not constitute proof. Just to be obvious, I’ll point you to this quote – from the Age article linked to by Helen above:

    (Police multicultural liaison officer for the Dandenong region, Senior Constable James Waterson) said crime statistics showed the Sudanese were well down on the list for law breaking activities.

    That article – from last week – hasn’t been corrected, and contains a direct quote from a person who’d know what he’s talking about. You, hc, are a stranger with no credibility other than that which you provide. You made a factual statement. There’s no actual evidence for it, and there’s evidence against it. Put up proof or withdraw it. I think the Sudanese refugees in Australia get slandered enough without extra assistance.

  25. patrickg

    Yeah, Mark, that’s the report I was refering too. I notice Harry prefers the institute of the Herald Sun for his information.

    Wonder if he uses it for his economic writing. Interesting…

  26. Mark

    patrickg, an examination of Harry’s blog suggests he takes a keen interest in matters of immigration and ethnicity:

    http://kalimna.blogspot.com/2007/10/i-do-like-to-be-beside-seaside.html

    And also that he is fond of generalising from the behaviour of a few to suggest a “systemic problem” as with his recent discovery that the Labor Party somehow nurtures child abuse:

    The Labor Party needs to look at itself and ask why the comradely culture of union hacks, hypocrites and bleeding-heart liars produces these outcomes.

    That’s in a post charmingly entitled:

    The Labor Party & child-sex

    http://kalimna.blogspot.com/2007/09/labor-party-child-sex.html

    I hope Harry doesn’t proceed in this fashion in his work as an economist, and I’m sure he doesn’t. But I think it does indicate how much credence can be given to his views on matters political and social.

  27. Mark

    To be fair, here’s how Harry justifies his “reasoning”:

    http://kalimna.blogspot.com/2007/09/labor-party-child-sex.html#4268149289327580168

  28. gandhi

    He should never have been allowed anywhere near the top of a major political party.

    Given how many repeated, astonishingly stupid remarks are made by ministers like Andrews, Downer, Nelson, Coonan and others, you have to wonder who is really running this country.

    Andrews sounds like one of those born-again wingnuts who rabidly insist everything is going great in Iraq. Downer is the world’s longest serving Foreign Minister (11 long years) – he once accused Islamic fundamentalist terrorists of being part of the global corporatocracy! Coonan isn’t capable of understanding the technology in her portfolio.

    And these people are running our country? Really?

    The Fin (I think it was) had an interesting look at how the job of treasurer has now been largely outsourced to the Fed Reserve and others. Who’s in charge of the other portfolios?

  29. hc

    You can’t win an argument and so change tack Mark.

    No evidence on immigrant connection with crime and a group you identify are immigrants therefore no evidence they are connected to crime. Errrr….

    Better evidence than yours patrickg which was a big zero.

  30. Gummo Trotsky

    More on those severe problems in Melbourne.

    Yep, you get immigrants in an area like Noble Park and it just incites the locals.

  31. Alister

    hc wrote:

    Better evidence than yours patrickg which was a big zero.

    Pot, meet kettle. Kettle, pot.

  32. Leinad, LP Comments Troll Union Representative

    C’mon, Harry, you’re a tertiary-educated economist and you’re tossing sooky adhoms poorly enough to put us thread-derailing snipers to shame. Chill, dude.

  33. Robert Bollard

    At the level of pure anecdote: I live in St Albans which has an increasingly large community of Dinka from the Sudan. A number of them are involved in some of the happy clappy sects and I suspect this may partly account for the rather large vote Family First got in this area last election. I remember when Blainey made his anti-Asian outburst in the 1980s there were two sets of posters denouncing him which appeared on the streets of Melbourne. One was produced by the International Socialists – the other by the NCC (who were courting a section of the Vietnamese catholic community). I wonder if Senator Fielding will put out a press release?
    Anyway – for a more substantial anecdotal contribution. I worked for 6 years at the Footscray CES and we began to get substantial numbers of refugees from the Horn arriving in the ’90s – mostly from Ethopia, Eritrea and Somalia. They, to be honest, used to drive us crazy because they were so desperate to get a job and used to push us to refer them to vacancies where they didn’t meet the criteria. There was one bloke in his ’50 who’d been a clerk in Tigre, had only basic English and had greying hair and bottle-thick spectacles who was in every day. Then there appeared a story about him in the local paper and we were given a glimpse of why he was so persistant in looking for work.
    You see, the refugee visa doesn’t come with a paid airline ticket. His whole family had a visa, but he had had to borrow the $5,000 for a one way ticket from Kenya and leave his family behind. The dole could support him but he needed to raise money to pay back the leech who lent him the five grand and then more to pay to bring the family over.
    I suspect that similar constraints apply to Sudanese immigrants. That might explain the example of 18 people in a 2 bedroom house mentioned above.

  34. peterc

    Mmmm Andrews he’s that committed Christian isn’t he. I know that Christ was on about respect for others and charity and helping the poor and disadvantaged. I don’t really follow it though so s’pose that is why I missed the bit about keeping out the darkies.

  35. Casey

    ” What about needy refugees from elsewhere (e.g. Iraq) with better prospects and who are better educated? “

    But education and the prospects of refugees are not components of the refugee and humanitarian resettlement program are they?

    Rather Australia’s Humanitarian Programme provides resettlement on the basis of need, and offers protection to people who arrive in Australia who are accepted as in need of protection.

  36. Hilker

    Don’t know why you good folk here at LP bother responding to hc’s deliberately provocative nonsense. You’ll never change his cold-war era mind, and you just give him the oxygen of free publicity.

  37. Casey

    “Is it wrong to want people with skills who will make good citizens? ”

    So if you want good citizens to fill the above requirement, look to the skilled migrant category, rather than the refugee program. The refugee program in Australia has already been seriously compromised with the changes brought about by Howards Tampa hysteria. Although we are already kind of ridiculous looking with our territory excisions, our Pacific solutions, Australia’s refugee program should not be compromised further by these sorts of announcements by Andrews.

  38. rog

    In NSW police reports are that additional manpower had to be devoted to sudanese populations in Blacktown, Newcastle and Coffs Harbour and that Sudanese were featuring as victims and offenders.

    The issue is that these people need additional resources

  39. rog

    To expand a little, cultural attitudes to drugs and alcohol are playing a role and there are considerable tensions between sudanese and islanders and aboriginals.

  40. mole

    rog

    I have been told the Aboriginals and the Sudanese have a real dislike for each other, at least in perth. But have never heard why.
    Could it be just clashes between extended family groups that is causing a lot of the high visibility “trouble”?

    Migrants adjusting has, and allways will be a problem, but overall the benefits need to be mesured against the costs.

  41. Katz

    Pick the contradiction:

    Australia has slashed the number of African refugees admitted into the country partly because many have problems settling into the community, the government said Tuesday.

    and

    “It’s simply on the basis of whether or not people can settle in Australia. I don’t see much point, if you are having problems, then adding to those problems by continuing to bring more people in.”

    Does this mean that the authorities will screen applicants from Africa more carefully before granting them entry? Or does it mean that the authorities will in future deny entry to all from Africa on the basis of what some entrants from Africa have allegedly perpetrated?

    If it is the latter then the policy is outright racist.

  42. Mark

    The issue is that these people need additional resources

    They’re refugees! That shouldn’t be surprising.

  43. Mark

    If it is the latter then the policy is outright racist.

    Precisely.

  44. hc

    Casey, I think you are wrong on the refugee program. Many refugees have had family links in Australia. It was for years part of the attempt to buy the ethnic vote by the Hawke-Keating governments. You can read about it on Fred Gruen and Michelle Grattons book on Labour in Power.

    Refugees/humanitarian migrants are selected just as ordinary migrants are though criteria are different. Of course you don’t want violent psychopaths as long-term residents. Australia is not a laboratory for social experiments – for those of us with feet on the ground it is home.

    Again my original question to Suz ‘Is Andrews wrong?’. I provide some evidence that he isn’t – the rest of you seem to want to tar with a racist briush anyone who pushes for a selective, quality migration intake. I haven’t seen a shred of evidence that he is wrong.

  45. Mark

    I haven’t seen a shred of evidence that he is wrong

    Nor has a shred of evidence except anecdote and a report from a tabloid been presented that he is right.

    And that begs the question of whether:

    (a) If he is, why is this occurring?

    (b) Whether he is indeed being racially discriminatory. Which, unless you want to twist the meaning of those words, he plainly is.

    Refugees/humanitarian migrants are selected just as ordinary migrants are though criteria are different.

    Huh?

  46. patrickg

    Harry,
    Sigh, don´t know why I bother responding, but you may find this interesting:

    http://www.iza.org/conference_files/amm_2004/simon_r1669.pdf

    it´s a conference paper from Institute for the Study of Labor about migration patterns and crime.

    It also backs up what I´ve been arguing, using the problematic, but simply base of incarceration rates.

    You may find it interesting, because – although it vindicates a policy based on the reality of low immigrant crime – it points out that the public in general are not disposed towards immigration.

    What´s really interesting is that countries with more restrictive immigration policies actually have higher incarceration rates, and more negative popular feeling about immigration than countries with a more open door policy.

    I´m a little ambivalent about the causal flow of the latter, but the former is fairly clear cut.

    On the bright side, you can sleep well knowing your racism is in line with the general public´s Harry.

  47. Mark

    Refugees/humanitarian migrants are selected just as ordinary migrants are though criteria are different.

    Btw, I found the immigration department website completely unhelpful (and very slow to load) in finding out what these criteria may be. Does anyone know?

  48. rog

    Authorities are responding to community concerns ie social misconduct by some of the Sudanese youth and their drug and alcohol abuse.

    Sudanese have diff attitudes to drug and alcohol and misuse of both here has led to social problems in the young. A problem is that our laws constrains and disempowers Sudanese parents from discipling their young over the use of substance. Once an alcohol fueled disturbance occurrs the appearance of the police and DOCS leads to further problems as the child is often the only one able to act as interpreter. Young sudanese do not take to work too well with the result that idle days are filled by drugs and alcohol. Gang fights can end in serious injury or death.

  49. Futt Bucker

    Gummo, the young people who bashed this African kid could be presumed to be white. The family of the killers were shown on the news tonight out front of the courts and could only best be described as unhinged rednecks. It was a shocking display.

  50. Mark

    Young sudanese do not take to work too well

    You might like to ask employers in Toowoomba and Moorooka about that.

  51. rog
  52. gandhi

    Katz said:

    Does this mean that the authorities will screen applicants from Africa more carefully before granting them entry?

    Maybe we should give them Citizenship Tests before they get their visas? Surely that would weed out the un-Australian types and fix this whole problem! LOL

  53. Katz

    Authorities are responding to community concerns ie social misconduct by some of the Sudanese youth and their drug and alcohol abuse.


    Translation: A desperate Federal Government is dog-whistling in the frequency of furtive racism in the hope of stemming the forthcoming electoral rout.

    I’m happy for Andrews to attempt to pull this stunt because every time he botches it he weakens the allure of the filthy wedge politics that have been the stock-in-trade of the Howard government.

    PS, what “community concerns”? It would appear to me that here in Melbourne the greatest concern is sadness that a nice young man of Sudanese origin fell victom to some brutal violence whose origins and motives remain unknown.

    Informed commenters and authorities state that there are few gang or racial problems in the City of Dandenong, the location of the recent homicide.

    The City of Dandenong is part of the metropolis of Melbourne, a city that has proven itself to be reasonably immune to Hansonism and similar atavisms.

    Those who say otherwse are either alarmist, or as in the case of Kevin Andrews, attempting to whip up alarmism for their own purposes.

    RWDB Flying Monkeys probably fit into the latter category.

  54. David Rubie

    There’s little point beating up hc on his attitudes – he doesn’t think he’s a racist, he just thinks he’s being a realist or astutely interpreting those ever reliable academic fellows at the Herald Sun. It’s a common problem amongst those who choose the “classical liberal” path in that it provides a very handy set of excuses to justify your various prejudices with selective statistics (see Andrew Norton as well). Our current immigration policy is a “classic” implementation of this regrettable attitude. Immigrants are selected by their “economic potential” which is a very neat way of saying that if you wouldn’t give them a job (too dark, too foreign) you don’t have to let them in. The old accusations of Labor packing districts with immigrants for political purposes is a nonsense – it’s pretty hard to control their voting behaviour once they are here.

  55. Enemy Combatant

    Charlie Manson “knew” what these words meant:

    “Blackbird singing in the dead of night
    Take these sunken eyes and learn to see
    All your life
    You were only waiting for this moment to be free.

    Blackbird fly Blackbird fly
    Into the light of the dark black night.”

    Charlie wasn’t a twitcher, but he sure could recognise the old reverse dog-whistle.

  56. Alex

    I see that Phillip Ruddock has come out against this change -

    Philip Ruddock: The issue of race in relation to migrant selection is a matter of conscience. I see it as being far more fundamental than issues of bricks and mortar.

  57. CK

    Great link Harry. Here’s your “evidence” of well-documented problems:

    A Sunday Herald Sun survey of 400 cases at magistrates’ courts across Melbourne found 14 per cent of offenders came from the Horn of Africa and the Middle East — many of them refugees — about 20 times the representative proportion of the population.

    Presumably these cases include everything from trivial offences from fare evasion and non-payment of parking fines up to serious assault.

    What a fraudulent arguement.

  58. Paul Burns

    We have Sudanese refugees in Armidale. One of them drinks a bit, but so do I from time to time and so do most of my friends, so that ain’t exactly a crime. I’ve had coffee with them up town a few times and they’ve always been good company.
    Recently there was a bit of a beat-up in Tamworth about the Sudenese refugees there. It turned up it was the result of a nasty leafletting campaign from some obscure white-supremacist group based in Rockdale in Sydney. The editor of the Tamworth newspaper was so disgusted by this bloke he gave him very short shrift.
    So, who’s feeding Andrews his info.

  59. Jobby

    A Sunday Herald Sun survey

    Ooooh … impressive pedigree! Did they have an ARC linkage grant?

  60. Peterc

    I heard the names of those charged with the murder of the Sudanese youth, and they weren’t Sudanese names. It is quite incredible that Andrews chooses to use this incident to beat up on the victims as a racial stereotype. Andrews is racist.

    Andyc: The creeps who let him into the party, let alone the cabinet, have no respect for this country, its people, our reputation or the concept of leadership by example.

    Gandhi: Given how many repeated, astonishingly stupid remarks are made by ministers like Andrews, Downer, Nelson, Coonan and others, you have to wonder who is really running this country.

    Yes, our democracy is very sick when these type of idiots (and others) work their way through the political system (preselection, election, back bench, minister, cabinet etc) then make decisions and push their own ideology, not representing Australians at all. The results are war, runaway climate change, abrogation of human rights and a corruption of the fabric of democracy with more power shifting to ministers without checks and balances.

    When Ruddock said a while back that “Australia wouldn’t intervene in the Hicks case because its a foreign jurisdiction” I wrote a letter to him and Howard requesting his resignation due to incompetence. Hicks was kept in Guantanomo Bay precisely because it wasn’t a foreign jurisdiction – it is outside of United States and International law. No response received from either of course and no accountability.

  61. mikey

    To follow up on CKs point theres two reasons one can end up at a magistrates court (well i suppose its always a combination of the two.)

    1) You have genuinely done something wrong.
    2) You are being picked up by the authorities (on acocunt of percieved troublemaking abilities or of community bigotry for example)

    My experience with Sudanese refugees (also in Armidale) suggests there is a significant level of the latter going on, often manifesting itself in exagerating petty crimes.

    Rog is right of course that more resources are needed. Many of the cross-cultural issues and tensions could be cleared up with a well resourced and well targeted refugee settlement program. As it is, it seems to me – again from personal experience – that community organisations are picking up the slack.

  62. Mary

    So now we get articles like this, with their gratuitous targeting of Sudanese, appearing to confirm in the tabloid mind that this group of people are a societal problem. Thanks Kevin, Pauline couldn’t have done it any better.

  63. hc

    patrickg:

    ‘On the bright side, you can sleep well knowing your racism is in line with the general public´s Harry’.

    What a disgusting, dishonest slur.

    You have no evidence for this and know nothing about my views on race or indeed my own racial situation. You unfairly try to tar me with the racist brush because I question whether people with criminal proclivities should be made permanent residents of Australia.

    This statement is false, you twerp.

  64. Stuart Fenech

    Two notes

    1. PeterC states “Yes, our democracy is very sick when these type of idiots… then make decisions and push their own ideology, not representing Australians at all.” What scares me is that by appealing to the most primitive emotions like fear (of the unknown), which I believe to a large extent fuels racism, what Andrews and friends are doing could very well be representing “the people”.

    2. It might be of value to define racism. We have surely all heard many times “I’m not racism but…” This seems to be going on above. My personal approach these days is to avoid the label and focus on the arguments, though it drives me up the wall that the same old rubbish keeps being dragged out. The labels change but the arguments (do not integrate, crime, etc) remain the same.

  65. patrickg

    Harry, you are racist, because you are targeting a group based specifically on race – in direct contradiction to the best available evidence, as supplied by Mark and I.

    You choose to focus on a sketchy article from the Herald Sun, with all the academic rigour of miracle water. That is because you are racist, and rather than confront your prejudices (it’s no biggie, we all have them about something), you would rather put your fingers in your ears, and keep your powder dry for the jigaboos that will inevitably come to take your jobs and steal your women.

    I see a pattern with your posts at the moment. You make a fairly silly statement, get called on it, questioned with evidence, and you choose to ignore the arguments and go off on a tangent.

    Much as it may surprise you, Harry, you racism is a tangent to this issue, which is that Sudanese refugees in Australia are being unfairly targeted – like every other significant immigrant group has been at one stage.

  66. Mark

    Interesting to see that Labor are accusing Andrews of having changed his story about the reasons why the decision was taken – in other words of lying about the actions of his own government to placate prejudice in the papers and the community.

    http://abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/10/03/2050297.htm?section=justin

  67. Peterc

    It might be of value to define racism.

    I think this short definition from Wikipedia [link] suffices:

    Racism has many definitions, the most common and widely accepted is that members of one “race” are intrinsically superior or inferior to members of other “races.”

    Andrews is racist because:

    * he is using ethnic origin (in this case Sudan) to negatively characterise another race

    * he is factually incorrect – the Sudanese are NOT overly represented in crime statistics, as Victorian Policy Commissioner Christine Nixon stated on tonights ABC news.

    * he is using an incident in which a Sudanese person was a VICTIM and alleging the race are somehow perpertators. This is akin to him dancing on the poor boy’s grave.

    I have seen many Sudanese about Springvale in Melbourne and not felt worried or threatened. I have been to a BBQ with a Sudanese youth group – they were very gentle, polite and just keen to play some tennis.

    Andrews is as disgrace to this country. Of course he is appealing to (whipping up even) some racist sentiments within sections of our community. It is called playing the race card. Howard did similar during the Sydney riots by condoning racist behaviour and pretending it wasn’t really there. This is the game they choose to play, to the peril of all Australians.

  68. hc

    patrickg,

    Your accusations are contemptible and erroneous. Trying to stop high crime migrants entering Australia is not racism.

    Neither the report you cited or the report Mark cited mentioned African migration to Australia. It is dishonest to claim they did. The report I cited at least did whatever its other claimed ‘tabloid’ features.

    You question my standards of debate – what about your own? Your last response is offensive, convoluted gobbledegook.

    You are a bigot and a total disgrace.

  69. Katz

    Your accusations are contemptible and erroneous. Trying to stop high crime migrants entering Australia is not racism.

    But hc as far as I can see it’s only male Sudanese who can legitimately be accused of commiting significant amounts of crime.

    Why deny entry to perfectly law-abiding female Sudanese?

    Doesn’t this policy smack of both sexism and racism?

  70. Mark

    Thanks for the headsup, Peterc, to the Christine Nixon story.

    Sudanese refugees are convicted for fewer crimes per capita than the general Victorian population, according to police.

    I imagine they’d know better than the Herald Sun.

    Senior Constable Joey Herrech, a Victoria Police multicultural liaison officer based in Dandenong, said the negative portrayal of Sudanese refugees did not match the evidence.

    “There has been a real negative connotation attached to them due to a small number of them having done the wrong thing,” he said.

    In reality, he said, the statistics were on the side of the Sudanese.

    “There’s an under-representation of the Sudanese in crime stats, compared to all other more common cultures within Australia,” he said.

    http://www.theage.com.au/news/national/sudanese-crime-only-1-per-cent/2007/10/03/1191091183260.html

  71. Nabakov

    As far as I can see, most refugees are escaping towards the rule of law.

    To paraphrase PJ O’Rourke about Cuban boat people – “if they’re willing to risk their lives and life savings to get here, then hold citizen ceremonies on the bloody beach as they arrive.”

    If we can handle the Irish, we can handle anything.

  72. Lefty E

    Yes, pattern forming. Valerie Pearson form the ABS yesterday destroying Hockey’s claims about AWAs. Today, Christine Pearson rubbishing Andrews’ nonsense.

    They’re just a pack of chronic liars.

  73. Lefty E

    Erm, Christine Nixon.

  74. Mark

    I wonder if Andrews (and harry) have a justification for not wanting those low crime migrants…

  75. Lefty E

    Yeah Mark, they show all the usual signs of being black, and often Muslim, but are hard to wedge with these law-abiding antics.

    Not suitable for campaigns.

  76. Peterc

    Crikey give Andrews a hard time, and a cartoon on their front page [link]

    “Kevin Andrews prods the Sudanese in the woodpile” indeed.

  77. Nabakov

    Erm, Christine Nixon.

    If that’s the Vic Chief Police Commisioner yer talking about, then I’m listening. Met her a couple of times and she is one smart, funny, tough dame. Men who have shot people dead approach her with respect and wary caution.

    But yes, running a state police force in an enthustically if not always effectively anti-authoriation nation will always be a losing proposition. But from what I’ve seen of Big Blue Chrissie in action in Vic, we could do a lot worse.

    Speaking of which, there’s a story about top cops from Vic and NSW informally meeting at an Albury/Wodonga venue in the late 90s to discuss spheres of operations, joint rules of engagement, expense accounts, etc, etc.

    Eventually and inevitably the dialogue became stymied – until a NSW top cop suggested to the assembled transborder bunch of high level wallopers:
    “How about this? We in NSW will stop stealing from crims if you in Vic stop shooting them.”

    Apparently the motion was unanimously carried with much drunken hearty laughter. And with a lot of crossed fingers behind backs I suspect.

    Shorter me: Given Australian law enforcement antecedents (from the Rum Corp onwards), I’m amazed they’re as good as they are now.

    And when is someone gonna make a dark gritty film about Ray “Gunner” Kelly. Sydney’s answer to Chopper, except Gunner was a cop in the 30s-40s. Done right, t’would make ‘LA Confidential’ look like ‘The Love Bug’. And make ‘Blue Murder’ look like ‘Blue Murder’ – in period drag.

  78. CK

    But wait! What’s this? The minister has secret information! http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,22528035-2702,00.html

    IMMIGRATION Minister Kevin Andrews has accused senior police of trying to paper over a serious Sudanese gang problem, but has refused to release evidence to back up claims that African migrants were a major crime threat.

    Despite Victorian Chief Police Commissioner Christine Nixon saying that Africans committed just a fraction of the crime in the state and were not a problem, Mr Andrews said anecdotal evidence suggested otherwise.

    The Immigration Minister cited “cabinet in confidence” for not releasing a report that he said detailed a serious problem among African refugees.

  79. joe2

    I heard Australian Human Rights Commissioner Graeme Innes on the radio this morning. He said he found Andrews decision on African refugees to be “troubling”. This will certainly set the cat amongst the pigeons. No news links yet. Online complaints to him about racial descrimination can be made on the following link…..
    http://www.hreoc.gov.au/complaints_information/RDA_complaints.html

  80. Adam Gall

    Nabakov is spot on with the PJ O’Rourke paraphrase.

  81. joe2

    Just picked up a news link to rights watchdog intervention.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/10/04/2050574.htm?section=justin

  82. steve

    But wait! What’s this? The minister has secret information

    He had secret information on Haneef too which turned out to not worth a cupful of cold water. Seems like it is becoming a trait of this Minister to say something stupid and then when questioned, claim he has secret information the rest of the world can not know about.

  83. hannah's dad

    I’ve got some infomation about Andrews but unfortunately its secret so I can’t tell you.
    Either that or I’m making it up.

  84. steve

    Andrews work like workchoices, the Haneef bungling and now the Sudanese minimalisation is making him more and more unaustralian. At what point to they deport troublemakers like this?

  85. Peterc

    Yes, Andrews goes for the predictable bullshit about secret documents and evidence, but only cites dubious “anectdotal evidence”. For him, the best form of defense is offence. He is a liar.

    Predictably, Howard digs in with denials of racism [link]. He is definately trying another wedge. I don’t think it is working though, the MSM seems to be mostly reporting him playing the race card yet again.

    PRIME Minister John Howard yesterday denied his government was racist after it closed the door to African refugees. Refugee groups accused the Government of playing the race card before an election as Premier John Brumby said African arrivals were welcome in Victoria.

    For Howard, desperate times are prompting desperate measures. Looking forward to your departure John and Kevin.

  86. Martin B

    A Sunday Herald Sun survey of 400 cases at magistrates’ courts across Melbourne found 14 per cent of offenders came from the Horn of Africa and the Middle East — many of them refugees — about 20 times the representative proportion of the population.

    Note that far more than 400 cases are listed “at magistrates’ courts across Melbourne” each day. In fact the Melbourne magistrates court alone has more than 400 criminal cases listed per day.

    Far be it from me to impugn the quality of research at the Herald Sun Institute, but is there any possibility that they may have been a trifle selective in an unfortunately unrepresentative manner about which courts they took this survey from and how the cases were selected?

  87. steve at the pub

    Not much objectivity in this thread.

    Are any of the “open borders to all comers at all costs” types the same ones who may have (possibly, maybe, sorta) made less than glowing positive comments about 457 visa entries?

  88. Martin B

    Are any of the â??open borders to all comers at all costsâ?? types the same ones who may have (possibly, maybe, sorta) made less than glowing positive comments about 457 visa entries?

    That’s hard to say, because there don’t appear to be any such people in this thread.

    Whether there should be any immigration restrictions at all may well be an interesting question but it is not one that has been addressed here.

    What has been asked:

    Is it desirable to apply an ‘integration test’ at an ethnic/population level rather than an individual level?

    Is there any decent evidence linking recent East African migrants with high rates of crime?

    Is it racist to make such a link in the absence of any substantial evidence?

    To these questions I say No, No and Yes.
    What do you say?

  89. tigtog

    Not only that Martin B, the Herald Sun is using phrases which are often used to misrepresent actual relevant comparisons: “about 20 times the representative proportion of the population” is the one that’s jumping out at me.

    20x the representative proportion of the population across Melbourne, adjusted for socioeconomic status and other appropriate factors, from which the rest of the magistrate court’s cases came?

    or

    20x the representative proportion of the whole Australian population, which is even less properly comparable to a recent immigrant population?

    NB my points about socioeconomic status etc and magistrate charges are meant to point out only that these people get ticketed/arrested more often for petty property and public order charges than do the affluent, not that more recorded instances should be viewed automatically as evidence of more criminality per se. Affluent miscreants who commit antisocial and criminal acts do so behind closed doors and often cost victims/society much more than the poorer miscreants do before being apprehended, as the affluent keep on being given a higher level of benefit of doubts.

  90. Martin B

    Table 4.19 and accompanying discussion in the AIC report is very interesting.

    Crime rates are best correlated with sex, age and unemployment rate (which is also well correlated with qualification level). Putting aside the latter factor (although that is probably the one with the most interesting policy ramifications), it is noted that the age structure of some migrant communities is very different to that of the overall population.

    For example the Cambodian migrant population is very young compared to the overall population. In raw figures, this group comes up with a high overall crime rate. But when you standardise the age structure, you find a lower crime rate than the overall population.

  91. Last Aussie in Burwoo

    Have any of the “pro-immigration” people ever worked in a detention centre? or in the police force? or the military?

  92. Laura

    Where the feck is Burwoo?

  93. FDB

    Have any of you “anti-immigration” people ever stopped to think how your family came to be here?

    I take it you’re Aboriginal, Last Aussie in Burwoo?

  94. Leinad

    Laura: I think he means Burwood, in Sydney’s west (well not quite the West, but in a sorta demilitarised zone comprising Ashfield, Strathfield and Croydon) a thriving multicultural centre with a large, hardworking Vietnamese and Chinese population, sometimes mistaken for marauding gangs of Janjaweed militiamen.

  95. Darrin Hodges

    What has Aboriginality have to do with anything FDB? Australia only existed because of White European settlement. It will soon cease to exist on the back of the current immigration regime.

  96. Laura

    Cheers, Leinad. There’s a Burwood in Melbourne too, and a Croydon also. Last time I was in the Melbourne Burwood I drove past graffiti on the local shopping centre pronouncing it to be “DA GETTO” , sort of a suburban DMZ possibly.

    “Australia only existed because of White European settlement” – LOL!

  97. Adam Gall

    Aboriginality has everything to do with it: it’s the only position from which you can legitimately claim not to be of migrant origin in this country, and thus deploy a legitimate anti-migration critique. It makes white claims to belonging look pretty contingent and dubious by comparison.

  98. Darrin Hodges

    I was born here, therefore I’m a native white Australian. Of course, Aborigines themselves are migrants, except they have been here a little longer than anybody else. And what would the establishment say if the Aboriginal community said “We don’t want anymore Africans or Asians being brought into Australia”?, would anybody care? or would they just dig up a “professional Aborigine” to say how much Aborigines have enjoyed immigration and multiculturalism over the last two hundred years?

  99. Laura

    Racist nonsense is mildly amusing for a very short spell of time, and then it just becomes sad, pathetic and deeply offensive. Bye Darrin.

  100. Jobby

    Have any of the â??pro-immigrationâ?? people ever worked in a detention centre? or in the police force? or the military?

    Damn straight. These do-gooding lefties need a good war to teach them how to hate foreigners properly.

  101. FDB

    Shame for Darrin he’s only got the one flying monkey.

  102. jo

    If Anglo’s didn’t actually come from here Laura (which they could have)…..then it’s a well known fact that convicts were law abiding, moral, virtuous types hand chosen by the Foreign Office to represent the very best of British society and establish the colony..

    Last Aussie – you mean people like this:

    In 1916, in the Sydney suburb of Liverpool, 5,000 troops of the Australian Light Brigade went for a riotous pub crawl that only ended three days and 50km later here in East Sydney.

    The citizens of the time were so appalled by what had taken place that the government was forced to take action. It introduced six o’clock closing, which had an enormous impact on Sydneysiders for decades afterwards.

    The Sydney suburb of Darlinghurst went under a different name in the Depression years. In local slang, it was ‘Razorhurst’. A place where razor gangs ruled with glistening blades.

    http://www.abc.net.au/dimensions/dimensions_in_time/Transcripts/s485143.htm

  103. Adam Gall

    There’s plenty more down there in the Shire, and some closer to home too, unfortunately. I guess they’re too busy dropping leaflets.

  104. Laura

    (off topic for a sec) – jo, your comments seem to be ending up in the spam bucket – doesn’t appear to be any humanly knowable reason for that – so apologies in arrears and advance.

  105. steve

    Andrews Babbles. But he still can’t bring himself to tell the whole truth.

    Mr Andrews said he would not release the documents upon which his summary was based because he feared doing so would discourage community groups from providing information to his department in future.

  106. Caroline

    Someone ought to carry out a dirt file on Andrews. Dig around a bit. Check out his ‘social’ life, his fellow congregationalists. I know its hardly kosher for wide eyed do gooder lefty’s, but I’m beginning to suspect he has some very dubious associations/associates. He carries on more like some sort of satanic cult member, than a (self)-proclaimed Christian.

    What we don’t already know about this government is the interesting question. What we do know is alarming enough.

  107. steve

    Caroline, the beauty of Andrews is that he brings himself into disrepute without anybody else having to do anything. No need for dirt files, just record Andrews struggling to make a hash of whatever given portfolio and there is instant entertainment and fodder for writing perpetually on the bungles as and when they happen.

    The Haneef case was fun, a bungle or two per day. Don’t think any of it has stood up to the scrutiny of a court and last I heard he was appealing the latest decision to try for a clean sweep in defeats at every turn in his handling of the case.

    With Ministers getting desperate and Howard refusing to let them out of their misery by calling the election, looks like the bumbling could go on for a couple of entertaining weeks yet.

    Digging dirt is a conservative pastime and waste of time. Far funnier when observing a Minister’s public performance condemns them.

  108. Kim

    I’ll go off topic, too, but since jo’s on this thread – mate, you should check out p. 470 of Margaret Simons’ new book The Content Makers: Understanding the media in Australia. There’s a big slab of comment from you quoted there from LP!

  109. jo

    who me?

    i hope i’d hadnt been smoking too many jazz cigarettes or had PMT or sumthun, cripes or from early post when i was a bit off sometimes/often…

    & thanks Laura, i posted a version of the following this arvo, and it refreshed in another thread.?!…and apologies for the clumsy first sentence of my earlier post, difficult to satirise white supremacists for obvious reasons.

    from a 2004 article written NSW state political reporter Paola Totaro in 2002:

    Back then (60’s-70’s) Italians were painted as prone to criminality. Jokes about the “mafia” were never-ending as too were assumptions that somehow Italianness meant an innate predilection for criminal behaviour – usually assigned to your father or brother.

    Professor Jock Collins, co-author of a study of ethnic groups’ attitudes and perceptions of crime in Sydney, Gangs, Crime and Community Safety: “The issue of ethnic crime raises its ugly head constantly in NSW history,” he says. “The mafia, the Greek conspiracy, the South-East Asian triads.

    The problem with political developments ….is that we can slip from discussion of the criminality of individuals to the criminality of entire cultures.”

    andrews is pulling a NSW ‘Laura Norda’ stunt, except that the Feds have the power to re-racialise australia’s immigration policy, state pollies can only “lock ‘em up & throw away the key”.

    just when you thought this govt had used every card in the race pack twice, they can always pull another from up their grubby sleeve.

    can’t wait for these sudanese kiddies to start winning gold medals in athletics for the country or playing footy – this usually shuts up alot of the thoughtless racists – there is a boy playing for collingwood who is half african – i think half angolan & half brazilian – his name believe it or not, is harry o’brien.

  110. jo

    still getting spam bucketed

  111. Kim

    jo, firstly, here’s what to do if your comment doesn’t appear:

    http://larvatusprodeo.net/about-larvatus-prodeo/comments-policy/what-not-to-do-if-your-comment-doesnt-appear/

    who me?

    i hope i’d hadnt been smoking too many jazz cigarettes or had PMT or sumthun, cripes or from early post when i was a bit off sometimes/often…

    Nah, it was all good.

    She was writing about the different sources of info/media people access now and how big stories (in this case that crocodile guy’s death – what was his name again? Father of little whatshername… you know who I mean… ok, got it, Steve Irwin!) develop, mutate, change, get debated, etc etc way before the papers can catch up. There’s a big slab of comment from you from LP and it reads very well. Anyway, you’re famous now so you should probably pay 35 bucks and get the book or hassle Penguin for a free copy or something!

  112. Kim

    Ps. Andrews is a disgraceful idiot.

  113. Illusive Mind

    It’s as clear as ever that Kevin Andrews must resign.

    What does he do when Victoriaâ??s Chief Commissioner of Police Christine Nixon pours cold water on his ‘ultra-violent Africans theory’?

    HE CITES A SECRET REPORT!

    From The Australian:

    IMMIGRATION Minister Kevin Andrews has accused senior police of trying to paper over a serious Sudanese gang problem, but has refused to release evidence to back up claims that African migrants were a major crime threat.

    Despite Victorian Chief Police Commissioner Christine Nixon saying that Africans committed just a fraction of the crime in the state and were not a problem, Mr Andrews said anecdotal evidence suggested otherwise.

    The Immigration Minister cited â??cabinet in confidenceâ?? for not releasing a report that he said detailed a serious problem among African refugees.

    â??The advice on which we made the decision was largely material which was provided in submissions to cabinet and, as you know, cabinet submissions are confidential. But can I say there was widespread examination of this, including by an interdepartmental committee particularly in relation to the settlement issues.â??

    My post about Liep Gony and this whole sorry state of affairs.

  114. jo

    thanks kim – went and found the post – a wee bit e-motional was that croc hunta post.

    very much due to the fact that i’d been in the school playground an hour or so earlier and had seen the terrible shock and dismay on the faces of hundreds of children as they were being told the news, including my own daughter. and we’d only been up to australia zoo a few months earlier.

    and i had to explain to her, quite a few times after she’d watched the 6 o’clock news at grandma’s house & had seen Germaine – “that of course the stingray didnt want kill Steve – it was just a accident” – “but the lady said”….. very thoughtless comments from GG so soon after his death. OTOH, i was a bit harsh with the boy stuff, ouch.

    funny old life this, isnt it!

  115. Kim

    Yep!

    Margaret has a tale about how her young kids reacted too.

  116. Katz

    What has been asked:

    Is it desirable to apply an ‘integration test’ at an ethnic/population level rather than an individual level?

    Is there any decent evidence linking recent East African migrants with high rates of crime?

    Is it racist to make such a link in the absence of any substantial evidence?

    To these questions I say No, No and Yes.
    What do you say?

    Nicely anatomised, Martin B.

    I note without surprise that no Flying Monkey has answered your questions.

  117. Nana Levu

    Andrews wants to bring more Christians from Iraq. That is why the Sudanese Muslims have been displaced.

    “The reduced intake from Africa will be filled by larger intakes from the Middle East – particularly Christians fleeing persecution in Iraq – and Asia.” see http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,23739,22528580-3102,00.html

    We should be asking, “Why does Andrews discriminate among Middle Easterners on the basis of religion?”

  118. steve

    The Deputy Mayor of Tamworth has turned up as the Nationals candidate. Perhaps Andrews is trying to help the argument for forced amalgamations of councils to help cut down the number of independent councillors who just happen to turn up as candidates for the National party.

  119. David Rubie

    Tony Windsor isn’t going anywhere in New England (useless as he is). It’s very frustrating living up here and seeing the major parties running dead – the labor candidate looked like a child.

  120. steve

    A formal complaint has now been lodged against the Federal Government.

  121. joe2

    A formal complaint has been made against the federal government and Andrews.

    Abeselom Nega from the Federation of African Communities Council says the group’s lawyers are lodging a complaint of racial discrimination with the Human Rights Commissioner. You would have to think that the case is quite strong. Especially as mentioned earlier , the commissioner was quoted as being “troubled”, by Mr Andrews comments and actions.

  122. steve

    Queensland Premier Bligh sinks the boot into Andrews.

  123. Peterc

    Wedge confirmed, its Tampa ’07. Andrews puts more petrol on the fire he has lit, with endorsement from Howard[link] It is an interesting read, some snippets below:

    “IMMIGRATION Minister Kevin Andrews has inflamed tensions with the African community by releasing a dossier claiming African refugees were involved in gangs, nightclub fights and drinking alcohol in parks at night.

    Prime Minister John Howard yesterday said it was “contemptible” to suggest the Government was playing the race card, after this week’s furore over Mr Andrews linking the drastic cut in African refugees to the failure of the Sudanese to integrate.”

    While refusing to release the full advice or provide any statistics, Mr Andrews said a summary of the material included:
    * list of unsubstantiated allegations …

    “The critics who shout racism are bereft of real arguments,” Mr Andrews said. “Australia has the right to ensure those who come here are integrating into a socially cohesive community.”

    African think tank chairman Dr Berhan Ahmed said Mr Andrews was “putting fuel on the fire of the race issue” by releasing unsubstantiated claims.

    Akoch Manheim, of the Lost Boys Association, an advocacy group for Sudanese youth, said the dossier was misleading. He asked who had advised Mr Andrews in the report. “The minister has a high profile, and what he says, many people who have never been in contact with Sudanese people will think that this is true,” he said.

    “For example, he is saying there is a nightclub crisis, but most Sudanese people don’t even go to nightclubs.”

    Elhadi Abass, the manager of the Multicultural Sudanese Centre in Flemington, said the so-called African gangs were simply groups who stood out because they were black and tall.

    “There are no gangs; it is the Sudanese culture to walk together as a group.”

    Somewhat shorter Andrews:

    “I am using my position as a minister to spread unsubstantiated allegations which I will not provide any evidence for to target a section of Australia’s immigrant intake based on their race and colour. We have the right to choose who comes to Australia. I am single handedly rewriting the rules on determining who should immigrate based on my personally selected new criteria of perceptions about their ability to integrate. I am also ignoring evidence contrary to my opinions provided by people like the Chief Commissioner of Policy in Victoria because I know better.

    Resign you tosser, you are a disgrace and an embarrassment to Australia.

  124. Katz

    We should be asking, â??Why does Andrews discriminate among Middle Easterners on the basis of religion?â??

    Before anyone asks that question, I’d be interested in seeing the forms that refugees are required to fill in to support their application for residency in Australia.

    Where on the form does an applicant indicate his/her religion?

    Schedule 2 of the HUMAN RIGHTS AND EQUAL OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION ACT 1986 states:

    Article 2

    1. Each State Party to the present Covenant undertakes to respect and to ensure to all individuals within its territory and subject to its jurisdiction the rights recognized in the present Covenant, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.

    The Commonwealth Human Rights Commissioner has the power to prosecute the Commonwealth Government for breaches of this Act.

    It is perhaps not illegal for the Commonwealth Government to request information about the religious status of refugees.

    However, if a pattern of acceptance and rejection on the basis of religion is discovered, then this is a clear breach of the Act.

  125. Mark

    Good for Anna!

    Where’s the federal ALP on this, though?

  126. steve
  127. joe2

    Where’s the federal ALP on this, though?

    Tony Bourke here, Mark. Doing his version of the limbo dance.
    http://www.theage.com.au/news/national/coalition-accused-of-race-politics/2007/10/03/1191091193835.html

  128. Mark

    Thanks, joe2.

    I think I noted earlier on the thread that it was kinda interesting that Andrews might be lying about the reasons for the government’s decision.

    But I’m not surprised, I guess, to see that no one in the federal ALP can bring themselves to put the case against Andrews with the same degree of forthright truth-telling as Anna Bligh just did.

    Oh, btw, I just got spammed by Kevin07 while I was writing this!

  129. steve at the pub

    The Shadow minister has, on the ABC this morning, endorsed Andrew’s actions, stated that the decision was not racist, was made in cooperation with the UNHCR and that it has been in the pipeline since before Andrews became the minister.

    http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/content/2007/s2052835.htm

    So was the whole thing a beat up by a stupid/biased journalist? A scoop and run knee-jerk reaction by a stupid/biased member of the public? A very bad presentation of the policy by Andrews? Or a deliberate twisting of a non-event into a race issue by Andrews, for electoral purposes?

  130. suz

    Tony Murphy was the epitome of caution in that interview. He seemed to be suggesting this was primarily incompetence on Andrews’ part. But yesterday afternoon, Kevin Rudd appeared to suggest that it was deliberately provocative electioneering.

    Which fits with your last option, SATP: deliberate twisting of a non-event into a race issue by Andrews, for electoral purposes.