Why is the Prime Minister pursuing a policy of restricting the 457 skilled worker visa scheme?
As I note here, the scheme is likely to be a net job creator. One of Australia’s leading demographers, Peter McDonald has noted the lack of rigour in the numbers the Prime Minister is using. The IT industry has noted that if it wasn’t for overseas skilled workers there would be no IT industry in Australia – despite these same workers being a focus of the PM’s attacks. The claims that we should train young Aussies to fill the roles is silly (hmmm – five years training – just hold the job guys) and hypocritical (hmmm – now which federal government funds the universities who train IT graduates, engineering graduates, etc).
So why is the PM vigorously pursuing a policy change that will destroy wealth for Australia? Presumably because it is an election year and the government believes that this sort of campaign will win votes. Presumably it is aimed at the ‘blue collar’ voters who labour is ‘bringing back’ to the fold.
And, well, they are the experts in politics, not me. But I hope this type of beggar-thy-country politics does not work. I hope the electorate will see through it. Because if they do not, with seven months of election campaign left, God help us! What other wealth-destroying policies will be pursued before September?