Did you know the Rudd Government is implementing the biggest immigration program since the end of World War II, and the biggest intake, in absolute numbers of permanent immigrants and temporary workers, in Australia's history?
Did you know the migration program for 2008-09 has set a target of 190,300 places, a robust 20 per cent increase over the financial year just ended?
On budget night, May 13, amid the avalanche of material released by the Government, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, issued a press release stating, among other things: "The use of 457 visas to employ temporary skilled migrant workers has grown rapidly in recent years. A total of 39,500 subclass 457 visas was granted in 2003-04 compared with an expected 100,000 places in each of 2007-08 and 2008-09." That is a 150 per cent increase in four years.
Did you know the number of overseas students coming to Australia is also at a record high, with 228,592 student visas granted in 2006-07, a 20 per cent increase over the previous year?
Under the Rudd Government, Australia's net immigration intake is now larger than Britain's, even though it has almost three times the population of Australia. To put all this in perspective, the immigration program in the Rudd Government's first year is 150 per cent bigger than it was in the Howard government's first year. The immigration intake is running almost 60 per cent higher than it was three years ago.
Sheehan forgot to mention that Australia now has the highest per capita permanent immigration intake in the world.
Don't expect the Rudd Government to be broadcasting this fact though. As Sheehan notes, the Rudd Government refuses to even mention immigration.
The fact that the Government can implement a policy such as this without any public consultation or discussion whatsoever makes we wonder what kind of "democracy" Australia really is.