Friday, August 22, 2003


Immigration control is often portrayed by the extreme end of the Australian Left as supported only by ignorant xenophobes -- though the major Leftist (Labor) party in Australia heartily supports such controls. A reader comments:

“Modern folklore has it that the advocates and administrators of the 'White Australia Policy' were all narrow minded xenophobes. The usual 'example' repeated over and over in the literature and on the web is the former post-war Labor Party immigration minister Arthur Calwell who is quoted as opposing Asian immigration in 1952 with the quip "two Wongs don't make a white." Calwell did say that, but he was also a Mandarin speaker, closely associated with Melbourne's Chinese community and pioneered the postwar immigration policy lauded by the multiculturalists. His policy was picked up and followed by the succeeding Menzies government. And when a motion to drop the White Australia policy was actually put to the vote at Labor's policy conference, it was seconded by Calwell . Few of today's politically correct multiculturalists can speak any non-English language.”

This article states the libertarian position on immigration in a fairly reasonable way. Libertarians are generally the only people in politics who oppose all immigration controls. There is however a lot of disagreement among libertarians on many issues and in this case I like the householder analogy: Shouldn’t a home-owner be free to decide whom he will have in his own house? Every libertarian and conservative would say “Yes” in answer to that. So why should not nations be free to decide whom they will allow into their country? As it happens, I am a fairly hospitable soul and I both have Asians living in my house and am glad that we have so many Asians living in Australia generally. But I am also glad that I have the right to say “No” when I wish and I am glad that the government of my country has also said a very effective “No” to a lot of middle-Eastern Muslim “refugees” who tried to force their way in here.

Although Australia’s conservative government has taken a strong and very effective line against illegal immigration, that does not mean that it is xenophobic. In fact overall immigration to Australia has grown greatly under the present government.


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