Herald Sun Andrew Bolt Blog
The Immigration Department statistics tell the story of Kevin Rudd’s biggest blunder.
The Immigration Department statistics tell the story of Kevin Rudd’s biggest blunder.
I hope you can spare time to read of my frustrating experiences as a visa officer at the Australian High Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka....
I should say from the beginning that I am not a disgruntled ex-employee who was sacked. I made a decision to resign from the department due to a difference in ethics on the issues I describe below.
In February 2012 the Regional Director for DIAC in South Asia .... told me “it does not matter if even 90% of humanitarian claims turn out to be false because the numbers are so small."…
At the time of his statement I had just spent at least 30 minutes in a meeting with him detailing the strong concerns I held with regard to the integrity of the humanitarian visa programme.
These concerns arose from interviews I had conducted with spouses/family members of humanitarian visa recipients that strongly indicated a visa had been granted on the basis of false information given to the department.
I had previously presented my concerns to diplomatic staff at the High Commission, to then Deputy Secretary (Jackie Wilson) on her visit to Sri Lanka around November 2011, as well as to then Minister Chris Bowen (whom I met ... in February 2012).
In my interviews with family members of people granted humanitarian visas (who were then applying for visas themselves) I asked why their family member had gone to Australia.
In a large number of cases I was provided with responses such as, “the gem business was not good”, “I don’t know”, “business was not good”, “our children are in Australia”, “Australia is giving visas for Sri Lankans”.
When I compared these statements with the statements the humanitarian visa recipient had made to officials in Australia I found extraordinary contradictions that lead me to strongly believe the (humanitarian) claim had been fabricated.
In one case a woman informed the department in her claim that she had been beaten in front of her husband, yet her husband stated no such events ever took place and they just didn’t want to live in Sri Lanka anymore so when his wife got a tourist visa to see their grandchild their daughter told her to apply for a visa to stay.
In another extraordinary case a woman claimed she had been thrown in jail for some time and had to escape, yet her family told me no one in the family had ever been bothered by the police or security forces at all and certainly had never been in jail.
One man told the department he had been a member of a political party and beaten because of this, however his wife (who was also his cousin and thus knew him from childhood) informed me he had never belonged to any such party and had never had troubles with the government.
In a concerning number of cases the wives of humanitarian visa recipients informed me they had no idea where their husband was or what he was doing in the preceding three years coinciding with the escalation in conflict.
These wives provided very limited information regarding their husbands’ whereabouts and activities during that time, leading me to question whether they were the spouse at all and creating great concern amongst staff that they were concealing illegal activities.
There were many more such instances.
Over a period of two and a half years I continued to report these instances to senior (immigration) staff at the High Commission. I continued to get frustrated that no one in higher authority gave me direction in how to investigate the matter further or what to do about it. I was told to keep a list although no one ever asked to look at my list.
I was informed by senior staff in the High Commission that I shouldn’t get so worried and that the police had to deal with this sort of frustration all of the time in the course of their work…
In the mean-time, while I was coming across a large number of suspect claims, I was also continuing to refuse any application for asylum that came from Sri Lankans still living in Sri Lanka—having been informed that it was not politically expedient to be granting visas to people still living in their home country.
[The] comment that it wouldn’t matter if 90% of humanitarian claims were false (because the numbers were so small) was made in February 2012. Over the next few months I believe almost as many or more Sri Lankans arrived in Australia to claim asylum than in the previous three years combined despite an overall improvement in the country situation.
I believe that situation was entirely foreseeable given the understanding amongst the applicants I spoke to that Australia had ‘visas for Sri Lankans’ and that the department was not interested in investigating claims that appeared—on the basis of new and relevant information—to be false.
I also believe it is likely that this type of scenario is not isolated to Sri Lanka.
I think there is a bit of a perfect storm of events over the last few years that have allowed ugly Australia off its leash …
I think we’ve all met ugly Australia over the last three years. People who would normally be considered on the fringe of the public square have well and truly made themselves into the centre of the public square … I do think it’s something we’ve got to identity and as a nation deal with.
We’ve seen climate scientists being abused. What sort of country is that?
“Now is the moment,” he said. “I have done everything I said I was going to do – and done the best I can. Now it’s up to others to try and do better.
“There is absolutely no fear whatsoever of the ballot box. It’s not an issue of running and losing. If anything it’s a respect for winning that makes me make a call now.”
"By 1985, the influence of traditional Christian philosophy in the West was weak and negligible.... Gramsci's master strategy was now feasible. Humanly speaking, it was no longer too tall an order to strip large majorities of men and women in the West of those last vestiges that remained to them of Christianity's transcendent God."
Lasseter’s final chance to rediscover his El Dorado came in March 1930, when Australia was gripped by the Great Depression. He went to John Bailey, president of the Australian Workers’ Union (AWU), and described how, 33 years earlier (1897 was again his favoured date) he had found an immense fortune in gold. The reef contained enough to make the AWU the richest union in the world, able to build cooperatives to employ its members and rescue them from poverty.
‘Lateral projection shows a foreign object implanted in the frontal lobe directly adjacent to the nasal passages. This object is most probably a radio transmitter... interference in blood circulation is spreading over large areas of the brain. Concentrated in the frontal lobes and in particular around the foreign object. It is highly likely that this blood-flow impairment is the result of the radio-frequency emanating from the transmitter. This, in turn, causes a depletion in oxygen levels and reduced nutrient supply to these areas of the brain, where changes in neurological activity are inevitable.’Mrs. Jones wrote to me recently:
‘Currently it is fair to assume that the two sets of electrodes inserted into my skull are firmly enmeshed with bone, muscle, nerves, blood and chemicals inside my brain. I am, in effect, a live radio circuit. The surface around my ears to the base of my skull emits gas which discharges in audible ‘plops’ onto nearby objects like wood, plastic, metal and worst of all my bedtime pillow at night. When I am directly in the path of oncoming microwaves, my head discharges like a volley, pouring into the surrounding environment.’
Well Andrew I will be recording it so I can fast forward any labor person you have in that wants to keep spreading the “love propaganda !”
I would like to see someone of substance like say MICHAEL SMITH!
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has hit back after an opposition party fundraiser menu featured a dish named after her that offered “small breasts” and “huge thighs”.Wrong. The menu was produced privately by the restaurant’s owner as a joke and was not used at the fundraiser. The National Post:
The menu was used at a dinner in March for Mal Brough, an opposition candidate for the September national elections.
Gender has again taken center stage in Australia’s bitter and drawn-out election campaign after a menu at an opposition fundraiser featured a series of sexually derogatory names for dishes based on Prime Minister Julia Gillard.Wrong. Those dishes did not feature on any menu at the fundraiser. The BBC:
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has said a menu for an opposition party fundraiser that made crude comments about her body was “grossly sexist” …Wrong. The menu was not for Brough’s dinner. Fairfax’s Jacqueline Maley:
The menu was for a dinner for Liberal National Party candidate Mal Brough.
Anyone who doesn’t believe that many of the attacks Gillard has sustained are sexist is in pure denial.Wrong. The menu was not for a Liberal party fundraiser. Chicago’s Scott Paulson:
Take one look at the latest and get back to me – the menu for a Mal Brough campaign Liberal party fund-raiser …
Prime Minister Julia Gillard of Australia is unquestionably disgusted by the Opposition, Liberal Party’s sexist antics of which she has been targeted. In a bashing of Gillard, a menu displayed at a fundraiser for Mal Brough …Wrong. The menu was not displayed. AFP:
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Wednesday accused the opposition of a pattern of misogynist behavior, branding a menu for a party fundraiser “grossly sexist and offensive” after it featured a quail dish named after her that offered “small breasts” and “huge thighs.”Wrong. The menu was neither featured nor used. The Guardian‘s Katharine Murphy:
The menu was used at a dinner in March for Mal Brough …
The Australian prime minister has again been forced to confront sexism in the country’s politics after it emerged that the menu at an opposition fundraising dinner offered “Julia Gillard quail … with small breasts, huge thighs and a big red box.”Wrong. No menu at the dinner offered such a dish. News Ltd’s Andrew Bolt:
The day after Gillard’s speech, we learned one Liberal candidate, former minister Mal Brough, had held a fundraising dinner featuring an appallingly sexist menu mocking the size of Gillard’s breasts and thighs.Wrong. (Bolt, solitary so far in this list, has already apologised.) Fairfax’s Judith Ireland:
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott is standing by Liberal candidate Mal Brough, despite calls for the former Howard minister to be disendorsed after his fund-raiser used a menu that made lewd jokes about the Prime Minister’s anatomy.Wrong. The menu wasn’t used. Fairfax’s Tony Wright:
By Wednesday, Gillard had the enemy square in her sights, thanks to the revelation that former Howard government minister Mal Brough had thrown a fund-raising dinner in March with Joe Hockey as honoured guest, the menu so overcooked with sexism and idiocy that it’d make an undergraduate waiter spit in the soup.Wrong. Sexist and idiotic that menu may have been, but it wasn’t part of Brough’s fundraiser. The Hoopla‘s Mary Delahunty:
Mal Brough’s crude menu of thighs, breasts and worse …Wrong. It wasn’t Brough’s menu. As sdog points out, Julia Gillard’s misogyny quail is another plastic turkey, and for much the same reason: news organisations and reporters have established a conclusion ahead of all possible evidence. Without timely corrections, inaccuracy becomes reality.
Former CIA case officer Bob Baer revealed on CNN Sunday evening that intelligence officials were possibly considering Edward Snowden’s case as Chinese espionage, after Snowden came forward this afternoon from an undisclosed Hong Kong location.
“Hong Kong is controlled by Chinese intelligence,” Baer said. “It’s not an independent part of China at all. I’ve talked to a bunch of people in Washington today, in official positions, and they are looking at this as a potential Chinese espionage case.”
“On the face of it, it looks like it is under some sort of Chinese control, especially with the president meeting the premier today,” Baer said. “You have to ask what’s going on. China is not a friendly country and every aspect of that country is controlled. So why Hong Kong? Why didn’t he go to Sweden? Or, if he really wanted to make a statement, he should have done it on Capitol Hill.” ….
“We’ll never get him in China,” Baer said. “They’re not about to send him to the United States and the CIA is not going to render him, as he said in the tape, is not going to try to grab him there.”
“It almost seems to me that this was a pointed affront to the United States on the day the president is meeting the Chinese leader,” Baer said, “telling us, listen, quit complaining about espionage and getting on the internet and our hacking. You are doing the same thing.”