Immigration –TAPRI survey
Our friends at TAPRI (The Australian Population Research Institute) have released the results of their 2018 annual survey, coincidentally and unfortunately on the day the federal election was called – so there was only one story in town that day. That’s a pity because their report is about an issue which will no doubt raise its head during the election: Australian attitudes to immigration. This report reveals why so many believe we need to reduce immigration. SPA issued a media release about it, just two minutes before the election announcement, so we too had difficulty in being heard. You can find the release on the SPA website https://population.org.au/new-population-report-%E2%80%93-australia%E2%80%99s-leaders-need-start-listening and there is a link to the full TAPRI report within this edition of eNews.
A matter raised in the report which I did not mention in the media release is the rise of right-wing populism. While opposition to immigration is strong, Australia has not experienced the enormous influx of asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants as has Europe. TAPRI’s report observes ‘provided conditions remain fairly stable, political and media elites, with their cosmopolitan supporters among the graduate class, can continue to feel relaxed. Their political experiment with high immigration, ever growing diversity, and globalisation will continue to be free of serious political challenge’. Speaking for myself, there are warnings here. All it will take is the emergence of a charismatic politician to seize the issue. Should that happen right-wing populism will be off the chain and unable to be restrained by the people they label as the ‘politically correct’. Our major political parties should therefore be taking the concerns of the majority seriously – otherwise they might not be able to contain the debate. The smoke-and-mirrors immigration reduction which the Coalition and Labour Parties are supporting will not convince these voters.
Rod Taylor, SPA’s website content manager, has been involved in the production of a video about renewable energy and a carbon dividend. It is an extended interview with Dr Mark Diesendorf, and although not directly about population it is related to so many of the problems we face in the future with some possible solutions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aImlepBDwjs&feature=youtu.be
(From President message, SPA e-news, April #2, 2019)