A possie in Aussie

April 10, 2009

Don’t bolt, Andrew! – Rudd is just as effective against boat people

Andrew Bolt has taken advantage of the news of a new boatload of asylum seekers arriving on Christmas Island, claiming that the Rudd government’s changes to asylum seeker policy are to blame for the increasing numbers of arrivals:

“The people smugglers’ verdict is now in – Kevin Rudd has put out the welcome mat

Iain, a blogger who is jumping on the ‘blame the loss of detention and TPVs’ bandwagon is typical of quite a few of the misinformed:

“I also wonder if this government really thought about it before they changed the very effective policy regime that provided real deterrents to both the people smugglers and their clients to one that makes us such a soft touch?”

It was not the detention policy, nor the TPV policy that caused the numbers of boat arrival to drop – although they occurred at the same time. Numbers of asylum seeker arrivals dropped in all industrialised nations for 2003 onwards. And, since late 2005, they have increased again.

The UNHCR’s latest analysis published in March 2009: Asylum levels and trends in industrialized countries 2008, Statistical Overview of Asylum Applications Lodged in Europe and selected Non-European Countries says

“In 2008, the number of individuals requesting refugee or asylum status in the 51 European and non-European countries included in this report increased by 12 per cent compared to 2007.

“Despite this increase, the 2008 level is still far below the one reported in 2001 when 623,000 new asylum-seekers sought international protection in these 51 countries.”

Numbers are up in nations that have introduced tougher asylum seeker laws, including copying Australia’s old detention system (see Asylum seeker numbers increase: treatment worsens)

The only part of the Howard policy ‘effective’ in reducing arrivals was the interdiction policy and working with the Indonesians to prevent boats leaving in the first place. Once interdiction was increased and ‘migration zones’ excised from northern Australia, the numbers decreased.

The Rudd Government, I must reassure Andrew and Iain, has retained both these policies.



  1. Don’t worry about Iain. He’s a nice chap who just happens to hate everything ALP for some reason (I think he got burnt in his youth somewhere) and now he just takes every opportunity to ‘Rudd bash’, no matter how tenuous.

    As I’ve constantly tried to tell him, if he’s really worried about the plight of the boat people isn’t it better that they are now treated more humanely & fairly when they make it here?

    Comment by Ray Dixon (Bright) — April 10, 2009 @ 7:47 pm | Reply

    • Hey Ray!
      Thanks for the heads-up.
      I AM getting sensitive to the boat people issue being rehashed once again.

      Comment by nayano — April 11, 2009 @ 9:02 am | Reply

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