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Population Immigration Infrastructure Jobs Growth Refugees and Politics

The politics of undercounting. THE nation is carrying about 800,000 more people than it had bargained for when Labor came to power in 2007. This is the gap between the modest official population projections that were publicly available at the time of the last election and the fertility and immigration booms for which no level of government was ready….

….Our real problems begin here, with the almost comical inability of our institutions to correctly forecast the basics: how many maternity beds, childcare and school places, new houses and apartments, train, tram and bus services would be required to raise, educate, accommodate and transport the most vibrant developed nation on the planet.

Opposition stoops to lies and excuses in race to the bottom on boatpeople. NEVER let what has actually been said get in the way of your argument. That appears to be opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison’s new mantra after he was caught out denying the undeniable yesterday on the Ten Network’s Meet the Press. Paul Bongiorno asked him: “(Tony Abbott) described (boat arrivals) as an invasion: isn’t that playing on people’s fears?”

Morrison answered: “Tony did not say that; he said you were at risk of putting Australia in a situation where it is open.” “He said peaceful invasion,” Bongiorno responded….

Population surge linked to jobs growth. IF new Prime Minister Julia Gillard really wants to slow population growth, she will need to put the brakes on the economy first. Returning the budget to surplus immediately would work, as would encouraging her friends at the Reserve Bank to jack up interest rates. The government no longer has the tools to directly reduce or increase the migration rate. Leading ANU demographer Peter McDonald gets irritated by the way so many people see population growth as somehow independent of the economy. Both migration — and, to a much greater extent than generally realised, fertility rates — are products of economic conditions. Migration is a function of labour demand. It slumps following recessions and booms in the good times…..

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