Labor pushes ‘Trump-style’ deportation bill

by novellagabb

GET OUT

Citizens from countries including Russia, Iran, Iraq and South Sudan could be barred from getting visas to Australia under the Albanese government’s deportation bill that the Greens dubbed a Trumpian travel ban, Guardian Australia reports. At first, Home Affairs secretary Stephanie Foster said she didn’t have the list of countries with her, the paper noted, then corrected herself to say she didn’t have a list period. The blacklisting would apply if countries refuse to take their own back after they serve time here, while the former detainees could get up to five years in jail and/or fines of up to $90,000 if they don’t prepare to leave. But migrants say it could tear families apart. The legislation will go before a six-week Senate inquiry after the Libs refused to support it — Foster noted the UK had passed into law a similar sanction power but hadn’t used it yet.

Meanwhile, Foster says she was not verbally abused by Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil as the opposition said, the SMH reports. Last month, Foster released fresh criminal record details of 149 former immigration detainees after Liberal Senator James Paterson asked — the paper says it “stunned” O’Neil and Immigration Minister Andrew Giles, but Sky News Australia went further, describing O’Neil as having “torn strips” off Foster who was left in tears. Deputy Opposition Leader Sussan Ley asked O’Neil about it seven times in the lower house yesterday. It comes as kids will be given the boot from the NDIS if early interventions work under proposed reforms to the $42 billion disability scheme. The high number of kids with developmental delays that join and stay on it is one of its biggest financial strains, the paper says.

>18 HOURS AHEAD

YouTube blocked a Foreign Correspondent episode about Sikh separatism and the death of Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada last year after the Indian government complained to the platform. PM Justin Trudeau, based on Five Eyes intel, accused the Indian government of assassinating Nijjar as CNN reported, causing an enormous diplomatic rift. The ABC program shows reporters were questioned by Indian criminal intelligence officials and stopped from filming an event in Punjab. YouTube also blocked the broadcaster’s news story about ASIO agents meeting with Sikh activists in Australia about the death, citing India’s Information Technology Act (2000). And it’s not the first time — the video platform blocked Canada’s broadcaster’s Fifth Estate episode this month too. The broadcaster notes it’s just weeks before India heads to the polls as Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to win a third term.

Meanwhile, will Meta block news on Australia’s Facebook and Instagram feeds like it did in Canada? Guardian Australia reports it’s been four weeks since Meta said it wouldn’t renew multimillion-dollar deals with news outlets to feature their content, and two weeks since Communications Minister Michelle Rowland asked news outlets whether Meta should be designated under our news media bargaining code. News on Canada’s version of the two platforms has been banned since August as I wrote about for Crikey, even though the spread of information amid the country’s record bushfire season can mean the difference between life or death. It comes as 30,000 Australians were defrauded as much as $200 million by an Israeli syndicate using Facebook ad campaigns, The Australian ($) reports, but the paper says it doesn’t seem that ASIC let any of the victims know. The gang used fake celebrity endorsements of fraudulent crypto investment schemes.

GETTING WARMER

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese will announce $1 billion for Australia-made solar panels, the SMH reports, in the form of grants and production credits (which manufacturers will cash in via tax breaks). Australia has the top uptake of solar roof panels — one in three of us have them — but less than 1% are made here. At the moment Australia and the world rely on China for solar energy technology, as The New York Times reports, but it’s hard to know what the renewable future would hold if a belligerent Beijing invaded US-backed Taiwan. Speaking of conflict — a new independent report has detailed to Defence Minister Richard Marles that the Brereton inquiry into alleged war crimes intended to give a “blanket exemption” for the Australian Defence Force’s highest levels, the Herald Sun reports, just like many troops and their families have long claimed.

Back to fossil fuels for a moment and Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek approved the 100km stretch of Santos pipeline that’ll connect the Barossa offshore gas field to Darwin, the NT News reports, after the company defeated a high-profile court challenge from Tiwi traditional owners. Locals were fearful it would damage the Crocodile Man songlines and an area important for rainbow serpent Ampiji, but Plibersek said that she was bound by the law. It comes as coal and gas exporters are bracing for fossil fuel revenue to tumble by many billions over the next five years, WA Today reports, per the government’s latest export forecasts released today. LNG will go from $72 billion to $65 billion in 2023-24, then as low as $45 billion in 2029. Thermal coal has already nearly halved, from $66 billion in 2022-23 to $36 billion in 2023-24. Cripes. It’ll fall to $30 billion next financial year.

ON A LIGHTER NOTE

Some 200 people had shown up for the race in Paris, and many quelled their growing nerves by lunging, stretching and jogging on the spot. Others tweaked the items on their trays: croissants, coffee cups, even perilous glasses of water. Elbows jostled for space hautily as aprons were tightened, undone, and then fastened again. The gun sounded, and the waiters took off, a black- and white-clothed mass dashing down towards the Centre Pompidou, hustling past each other through the Marais, and hurrying back to the finish line. They were competing for prizes like Olympics opening games tickets, four-star hotel stays and restaurant vouchers, but it was more than that. The waiters chased glory.

The annual race of cafe and restaurant waiters originated in the 20th century, as The New York Times tells it, but it hadn’t been held since 2012 because of a lack of funding. The rules were simple: no running, and cross the finish line with your pastry, cup and water still standing. Wait staff from the city’s top restaurants — at the Bouillon Chartier, the Brasserie Lipp or Le Procope — were revered among the crowds, while fresh on the scene apprentices kicked at stray garbage moodily. No-one really trains for the 2.5-kilometre dash, one told the paper. Their day jobs, spent delivering cafe lattes and ensuring the customer in Paris is absolument certain they are not, nor have they ever been, right is more than enough preparation.

Hoping your coffee is strong and fast this morning, and that you have a restful long weekend. The Worm will be back in your inbox on Tuesday morning.

SAY WHAT?

Can we get real here? If a renter loses their home they are sleeping in their car on the street. If a property investor has to sell their home, that might be bad but they still get a huge sale price out of that home.

Max Chandler-Mather

The Greens MP continued that the country’s housing policies treat the two outcomes as if they were the same. He was responding to a question from a woman with at least two properties about why landlords are “demonised” — Q+A‘s Patricia Karvelas had added that the landed gentry were feeling the pinch from the cash rate hikes.

CRIKEY RECAP

Senator Jacqui Lambie (Image: AAP/Mick Tsikas)

Lambie is now in a tantalising position. She has a federal-state axis of balance of power, of great potential. But she is also in the same position as Clive Palmer when he elevated her to the Senate in his own rentaparty. Nothing binds whoever, by a degree of chance, ends up in the Assembly.

“There are eight candidates — three each in Braddon and Lyons, and two in Bass (one Bass candidate has a lower personal vote) — from among whom will come the two or three members for the Experience. They include several military vets, an ex-Tory mayor from the UK, child protection lawyers and small business owners — and some are several of these.”

“It went, well, how you’d expect it to go. Some of NBC’s highest-profile journos were publicly furious. And it’s not like this gave NBC a voice that will make a second Trump administration more agreeable to the network — their alliance has fallen apart, as every friendship with the former president eventually does.

“To top everything off, having hired someone clearly unsuitable and allowed her to be publicly humiliated several times, the geniuses behind this debacle promptly hoiked [Ronna] McDaniel into the path of the nearest bus, announcing this morning (Tuesday evening in the US) that mere days after her hiring announcement, she was to be axed.”

“In the first place, the focus on Coles and Woolies is misleading. There are two other supermarket chains: Metcash, which supplies and sponsors the IGA chain of independents, and the German giant Aldi. Woolies had annual sales in 2022-23 of $48 billion in its Australian supermarkets and food business, Coles had $40.5 billion, Metcash had around $9.7 billion through supermarkets and food, and Aldi, a private company, is estimated at around $12 billion.

“In other words, out of the roughly $110 billion in revenue, nearly 20% goes to Aldi and Metcash — but both have been conspicuous absentees from the discussion about price gouging and breaking up supermarket chains.”

READ ALL ABOUT IT

Judges vs spies: Pakistan’s jurists accuse intel agency ISI of intimidation (Al Jazeera)

Thailand moves to legalise same-sex marriage (BBC)

North Korean TV censors British gardening show host’s jeans (CNN)

Report finds NZ students among worst-behaved in the OECD, says a more national approach is required (NZ Herald)

Meta and Google accused of restricting reproductive health information (The Guardian)

Russian FSB says US, UK and Ukraine behind Moscow attack (euronews)

Israel deploys expansive facial recognition program in Gaza (The New York Times) ($)

THE COMMENTARIAT

Albo behaves like a celebrity. We need him to be a prime ministerShaun Carney (The SMH): “We all know that he attended a Taylor Swift show in Sydney and a private Katy Perry gig at a Melbourne mansion. And he got engaged. And of course, just a few days before the tax announcement he showed up with a bunch of wealthy worthies at the Australian Open men’s final and was roundly booed by the crowd. Best wishes to the PM and his fiancee Jodie Haydon. But with the other stuff, given how much political trouble he and his government are in, I don’t get it. He secured the prime ministership as Everyman Albo, who understood the everyday concerns of Australians. The public stopped buying that last year as he burned through the government’s political capital and his own in the lead-up to the failed referendum on the Indigenous Voice to Parliament.

“Why he chooses to disport himself like a celebrity is a mystery. His job is to put his head down and be seen to be — repeat, seen to be — working on behalf of millions of Australians who are genuinely worried about their financial situation … Albanese has simply not become a commanding presence as prime minister. He is yet to find a way to articulate a coherent program for dealing with these profound inequities, much less a saleable story to go with it. He appears to have convinced himself that the political landscape in which he and his government are operating is somehow normal when there is no such thing. Surely the fact that he is running level with Dutton, who has offered no policies except for the nuclear energy three-card trick, is a sign …”

Albanese hit by unexpected wave as he tries to clear the decksMichelle Grattan (The Conversation): “At a Labor national conference less than a decade ago Albanese opposed the ALP embracing turning back boats carrying asylum seekers. This week, his government tried to rush through legislation to give it power to force non-citizens to cooperate in their removal by, for example, signing an application for a passport or other travel documents. Also this week, the government watered down its proposed vehicle efficiency measure in an effort to defuse opposition attacks that it is a ‘new car and ute tax’.

“On another front, Albanese last week took the extraordinary course of declaring the government won’t proceed with legislation on religious discrimination without bipartisan support. Taken together, these actions show a PM wanting to chart a course firmly focused on an election that is at most just over a year away. Preoccupied as it was with the Voice referendum for much of last year, the government was late to appreciate the extent to which voters were becoming overwhelmingly concerned with the cost of living. It’s not making that mistake now.”

HOLD THE FRONT PAGE

WHAT’S ON TODAY

Online

  • Economics commentator Cameron K Murray will talk about his new book, The Great Housing Hijack, in a webinar held by the Australia Institute.

Ngunnawal Country (also known as Canberra)

  • The International Organization for Migration’s Amy Pope will speak about migrants and global talent competition at the National Press Club.

  • Assistant Minister for Treasury Andrew Leigh will speak about data and AI at the Australian Government Data Summit held at Hotel Realm.

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