Immigration Destroys Australian Workers’ Wages By James Reed

     Remember the old argument against immigration, popular when the White Australia Policy was first fought for, that immigration acts to destroy Australian workers’ wages? Guess what? A chapter in a new book by A. Stewart (et al.),  The Wage Crisis in Australia, (2018), by Iain Campbell, “Temporary Migrant Workers (TMWs), Underpayment and Predatory business Models,” shows that Australia’s immigration system is undercutting the wages of Australian workers:
  https://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2018/11/australias-immigration-system-undercuts-australian-workers/

“This chapter argues that the expansion of temporary labour migration is a significant development in Australia and that it has implications for wage stagnation… Three main facts about their presence in Australia are relevant to the discussion of wage stagnation. First, there are large numbers of TMWs in Australia, currently around 1.2 million persons. Second, those numbers have increased strongly over the past 15 years. Third, when employed, many TMWs are subject to exploitation, including wage payments that fall below — sometimes well below — the minimum levels specified in employment regulation… One link to slow wages growth, as highlighted by orthodox economics, stems from the simple fact of increased numbers, which add to labour supply and thereby help to moderate wages growth. This chapter argues, however, that the more salient point concerns the way many TMWs are mistreated within the workplace in industry sectors such as food services, horticulture, construction, personal services and cleaning. TMW underpayments, which appear both widespread in these sectors and systemic, offer insights into labour market dynamics that are also relevant to the general problem of slow wages growth…

Official stock data indicate that the visa programmes for international students, temporary skilled workers and working holiday makers have tripled in numbers since the late 1990s… In all, the total number of TMWs in Australia is around 1.2 million persons. If we include New Zealand citizens and permanent residents, who can enter Australia under a special subclass 444 visa, without time limits on their stay and with unrestricted work rights (though without access to most social security payments), then the total is close to 2 million persons… TMWs now make up around 6% of the total Australian workforce… Decisions by the federal Coalition government under John Howard to introduce easier pathways to permanent residency for temporary visa holders, especially international students and temporary skilled workers, gave a major impetus to TMW visa programmes. Most international students and temporary skilled workers, together with many working holiday makers, see themselves as involved in a project of ‘staggered’ or ‘multi-step’ migration, whereby they hope to leap from their present status into a more long-term visa status, ideally permanent residency. One result, as temporary migration expands while the permanent stream remains effectively capped, is a lengthening queue of onshore applicants for permanent residency…

Though standard accounts describe Australian immigration as oriented to skilled labour, this characterisation stands at odds with the abundant evidence on expanding temporary migration and the character of TMW jobs. It is true that many TMWs, like their counterparts in the permanent stream, are highly qualified and in this sense skilled. However, the fact that their work is primarily in lower-skilled jobs suggests that it is more accurate, as several scholars point out, to speak of a shift in Australia towards a de facto low-skilled migration programme… A focus on raw numbers of TMWs may miss the main link to slow wages growth. It is the third point concerning underpayments and predatory business models that seems richest in implications. This point suggests, first and most obviously, added drag on wages growth in sectors where such underpayments and predatory business models have become embedded. If they become more widely practised, underpayments pull down average hourly wages. If a substantial number of firms in a specific labour market intensify strategies of labour cost minimisation by pushing wage rates below the legal floor, it can unleash a dynamic of competition around wage rates that foreshadows wage decline rather than wage growth for employees… Increases in labour supply allow employers in sectors already oriented to flexible and low-wage employment, such as horticulture and food services, to sustain and extend strategies of labour cost minimisation… The arguments and evidence cited above suggest a spread of predatory business models within low-wage industries.37 They suggest an unfolding process of degradation in these labour markets…”

     Clearly, the ruthless globalists will always chose workers who cost the least, and are easiest to exploit, and while they should not be here, no workers are exploited as much as the temporary workers. This is a sad story which should not have happened. Much blood and sweat was shed early in the 20th century to prevent this misery, but the elites were able to implement Fabian cultural change, so that now Australians are worse than we ever have been, for now we face extinction. I doubt that we will see the yellow shirt protest as in France, in this land of the locos eaters:

How sweet it were, hearing the downward stream,
With half-shut eyes ever to seem
Falling asleep in a half-dream!
To dream and dream, like yonder amber light,
Which will not leave the myrrh-bush on the height;
To hear each other's whisper'd speech;
Eating the Lotos day by day,
To watch the crisping ripples on the beach,
And tender curving lines of creamy spray;
To lend our hearts and spirits wholly
To the influence of mild-minded melancholy;
To muse and brood and live again in memory,
With those old faces of our infancy
Heap'd over with a mound of grass,
Two handfuls of white dust, shut in an urn of brass!
Lord Aflred Tennyson, “The Lotos-Eaters” (1832)

 

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Thursday, 15 April 2021
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