National on the Manus Island crisis

Written By: - Date published: 8:14 am, November 22nd, 2017 - 82 comments
Categories: australian politics, Gerry Brownlee, International, john key, Judith Collins, national, Politics, same old national, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Back in 2013 National leader John Key (remember him) offered to Australia to take 150 refugees stationed at Manus Island.

He repeated the offer on a number of occasions.

The offer was referred to in this article from the Herald in 2016:

New Zealand would take 150 refugees each year from Australian detention centres each year if asked to, Prime Minister John Key says.

Ahead of the Australian election on Saturday, Labor leader Bill Shorten said New Zealand could be used as a resettlement option for refugees now on Nauru and Manus Island in Papua New Guinea.

Mr Shorten told ABC-TV that discussions should be first held with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, but New Zealand was “a resettlement nation”.

The 150 quota was agreed between Mr Key and former Australian Labor Prime Minister Julia Gillard in 2013 but has never been used.

“In the instance that Australia decided to invoke that provision we would allow that to happen,” Mr Key said today when asked about Mr Shorten’s comments.

“But at this stage that hasn’t been something that Australian governments have wanted to take up.”

Fast forward to 2017 and the change of Government to the Labour-New Zealand First-Greens.

Nek minnit:

National Party’s Judith Collins said on Twitter it was staggering Ms Ardern, as “the Minister in charge of our nation’s security”, had either not had or not read briefings.

 

Mr Brownlee said Ms Ardern was amping up the response compared to the previous offer from National Party leaders.

“The real point is that we’re selecting refugees to come to New Zealand on the basis of their being would be a good fit for our country, but it still leaves Australia with a massive problem.

“And I think criticising them for dealing with people – that have gone through six countries in some cases trying to get to Australia to seek asylum or refugee status – is pretty harsh.

He said he did not doubt Australia would eventually accept New Zealand’s offer.

“I think that’s a possibility but you’ve got to let them go through that process.”

“Saying that it’s an unacceptable situation and Australia needs to live up to its international responsibilities etcetera, I think that’s a step too far.”

“I think it tends to deny the problem that Australia’s got, so it’s not just the 400 people who are protesting on Manus Island.”

“They’re protesting because they don’t want to leave the facility which Australia is trying to close down and many of those, you’ll find, are not eligible to be considered refugees or asylum seekers so they’ve got other motives for creating the attention they have.”

However, he refused to go into how he might know many of those on Manus Island were not eligible.

He supported Australia’s stance on asylum seekers.

“I think you have, to because this is a country that takes five times the number of refugees that we do per capita, and is dealing with a serious problem, they’ve got big, big sea borders,” he said.

So much to unpick …

Jacinda has been pushing the exact same deal that National reached with the Australian Government.  What is National saying she is guilty of, over enthusiastic advocacy?

If Judith Collins thinks the deal is a threat to our security why did her party support it?

Why does Gerry Brownlee think that it is acceptable to cut the water and power to a site with all those refugees?

And why during nine long years of National Government did they only propose an increase to 1,000 per year but only after 2018 if the numbers of refugees that we took in were so small?

Expect a lot more of this.  National blowing hard on the dog whistle trying to make out that Labour is doing too much and yet not enough when last term National begrudgingly was also trying to do the same but less.

82 comments on “National on the Manus Island crisis”

  1. Tuppence Shrewsbury 1

    Bit early in to the new governments term to be making “the other side did it too” excuses isn’t it?

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Bit early in the term for the opposition to attempt to rewrite history.

      • halfcrown 1.1.1

        +1

        • Aaron 1.1.1.1

          Tuppence that is a bizarre comment – No one said Labour is making excuses that the other side did it. The article is in fact pointing out that National seems to have forgotten that they made the exact same offer to Australia that Labour is now making. It’s s sign of incompetence that they can’t remember that and it’s a sign of your own incompetence that you couldn’t work that our from reading this article.

          Maybe you read the article too fast in your haste to be the first person to comment, but the National Party Social Media team is clearly having trouble getting good staff.

      • Tuppence Shrewsbury 1.1.2

        You could say the same about the labour government and it’s supporters walking back a significant number of non negotiable bottom lines from before the election.

        With the exception of the years free education and the sales of houses to foreign buyers, hats off to them for those wins, even though i think a years free education for all is not exactly “progressive” in it’s right on meaning

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2

      Excuses? You make excuses for things you’re ashamed of. Nothing to be ashamed of here. Apart from your rank hypocrisy, that is.

      • Tuppence Shrewsbury 1.2.1

        You were always one of the first to rush in with the “the other side did it too argument doesn’t wash”, now your throwing round hypocrisy with a straight face?

        I disagree with you, but i thought you at least had the intellectual honesty to not try and excuse the same argument when labour aren’t in opposition.

    • McFlock 1.3

      Actually, early is the time it’s most suitable.

      When, after almost nine years of changing conditions, the national government was still moaning about the previous Labour government, it looked tired and stupid.

      When the National opposition today complains vehemently about government policies it maintained barely a year ago, it looks hypocritical, tired, and stupid.

    • Pete 1.4

      How bizarre to seem to be appealing to some sort of logic, rationality and intelligence with such vacuous nonsense.

      National said something should happen in a situation. They obviously thought that was the best in the circumstances.

      Labour picks up the baton now they’re in the driving seat and go for what National wanted.

      Collins and Brownlee go on a mindless attack hoping to rouse support from the equally mindless, illogical, irrational, unintelligent and vacuous.

      The fact that this clearly is not an “other side did it too” example shows that Collins and Brownlee have hit fertile ground.

  2. Janet 2

    My morning fun watching the the tired old pale stale Nats desperately trying to keep their places in the Nat opposition. Watch the jockeying for position after the summer break.

  3. Hey, if they can get away with pretending their policy in government was to attempt a re-entry into Pike River if possible, why shouldn’t they pretend they never supported NZ taking in Manus Island inmates?

    • dv 3.1

      Hey, if they can get away with lying (pretending) their policy in government was to attempt a re-entry into Pike River if possible, why shouldn’t they lying (pretend) they never supported NZ taking in Manus Island inmates?

      Fixed it for you

  4. Enough is Enough 4

    National does not work on principle.

    This is a result of focus groups. They will be using their dirty strategies and forming policy not on what is right but by what the focus group tell them to do.

  5. patricia bremner 5

    Love that ‘photo of Jerry. So revealing. Sour down in the mouth complaining.

    • mary_a 5.1

      Yep Patricia (5), that pic of old Gerry boy is quite representative of the mood of the lying, nasty losers Natz at present. Still prickling over the election result.

      How he can publicly lie and exaggerate about Natz position re Manus Island refugees, is really mind boggling!

  6. Cinny 6

    While people continue to discuss Manus, people are still suffering over there and the PNG locals are angry, resolution is needed for all to prevent anymore damage.

    We should be could be a country that enhances and saves lives, not a country who turns a blind eye due to fear of the unknown, or condemns people to rape, assault, death because we’ve no back bone for standing up against others, and doing what is humane.

    Media in Aussie don’t want to discuss it no doubt being directed by Channel Nine and Murdoch. Keep the issue quiet, dress it down etc.

    The pm who quit aka key, his offer was just for show, ego grooming and voter seduction.

    Our government has the back bone to follow through and do something about it.

    Meanwhile the opposition are appearing to look like a bunch of bitter washed up has beens, desperately spinning propaganda in order to justify their ‘turn around’. The oppositions job is to oppose, personally I didn’t expect anything less from a political party who under values human beings to start with.

    The refugees aren’t going to come to NZ and be a bunch of arseholes, why…? Because they are begging for us to save their lives, why would they do something to get kicked out of a country they’ve asked to help them? No doubt they will end up being stand out citizens like many many other refugees that have come here.

    Send the frigate to pick them up please and to hell with Aussie politics, lets save and improve lives instead.

    • Zorb6 6.1

      Very rose coloured specs you wear. And what about their wives and children ?

      • red-blooded 6.1.1

        What’s your point re wives and children? NZ has a long history of allowing spouses and immediate family of refugees to join them. Why would that be different in this case?

        • Zorb6 6.1.1.1

          They are just opportunists. Where will they all be housed?Can’t house the people here already.

          • McFlock 6.1.1.1.1

            Nice. Use national’s incompetence to justify your heartlessness, why don’t ya…

            • Zorb6 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Not a very helpful answer at all.More motels you think?

              • McFlock

                It was a stupid question. I believe the current offer is to simply put the 150 as part of out current annual quote of refugees, whom we already have facilities for (housing is the least of it).

                The current quota is more than the number of refugees on Manus. Therefore we can do the same for the lot of them.

                • Zorb6

                  So any other genuine refugees allowable under of a quota of 750?can forget it,because you have decreed these ones a priority.NFI.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    “Genuine”

                    Unlike your argument.

                  • mickysavage

                    Labour’s policy was to double the quota anyway. Stop creating false equivalences.

                    • Zorb6

                      No false equivalence.Thats why the ?Policy been enacted yet?The false equivalence is dragging up National commentary from last year and a tale of a now worthy citizen who ate roots and bugs in the jungle,and then fast forward,arrived in NZ.

                • Zorb6

                  Changed your tune lately I see.As you’ve been told ,the number including wives and children would be in the thousands.How many will be staying with you?

                  • McFlock

                    That applies to all refugees who come in under our quota.

                    As for who stays at my place, maybe I’ll have some spare room after I kick your mother out in the morning.

                    • Zorb6

                      I actually asked ‘will’ be staying with you.So leave mum,alone.You are so compassionate and at the same time,so unrealistic.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes, I saw what you asked. And I’ll do my 4,000,000th part of helping those refugees, don’t you worry your delicate little head about it.

                      So will you.

              • Cinny

                July 3, 2016 under the national coalition government.

                The obvious win for the government in putting the issue of the refugee quota up against homelessness could be to play off supporters of increasing the refugee quota against supporters of action on homelessness, without actually doing anything significant on either.

                https://thespinoff.co.nz/featured/03-07-2016/justifying-a-meagre-refugee-quota-because-of-the-homeless-problem-is-a-terrible-terrible-argument/

                • Zorb6

                  Alert,we now have a new Govt.Don’t use the old Govt and their principles as a prop.It is irrelevant.

                  • Cinny

                    You are so missing the point Zorb, the only props are the ones you are using to delude and distract.

                    Meanwhile the reality is….

                    Refugees aren’t escaping poverty they are escaping persecution.

                    Refugees do not leave their country, family and livelihoods to steal our jobs or freeload on our hard-earned tax money. They come to survive.

                    Refugees are often well educated, they are Dr’s, Nurses, Teachers, Builders. Does NZ need more people in these occupations? Of course we do.

                    “New Zealand has problems. Our poverty level is too high. Our suicide rates are through the roof, and that isn’t acceptable. But what is even more unacceptable is sitting back and watching fellow humans serve out an unwarranted and horrific death sentence, when we are in a position to help.”

                    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/opinion/2017/11/aziz-al-sa-afin-manus-island-is-all-of-our-shame-to-bear.html

                    • Zorb6

                      ‘they are Dr’s, Nurses, Teachers, Builders. Does NZ need more people in these occupations? Of course we do.’How many from Manus Is are of these vocations?Interesting to learn that they were not escaping poverty.Poverty is a big problem for thousands of NZ’ers.Will they be bringing money as well as the skills you list,or don’t you really know?

                    • Cinny

                      Zorb your right wing narratives are wasted on compassionate people.

                      Often refugees have used all of their money surviving until they reach safety. Sometimes that takes years.

                      Interesting how much importance you put on money, in that case wouldn’t such skilled people enhance our economy?

                      Refugees want to feel safe, just like anyone else.

                      When your children see refugees on tv suffering and ask you, what did you do to help? What will you tell them?

                      I tell my children they are worth more than all the money and riches in the world and that I would rather be penniless with them in my life, than trade them for all the money in the world.

                    • Zorb6

                      I see ,its your own personal affirmation as a worthy human being you seek.’I tell my children they are worth more than all the money and riches in the world and that I would rather be penniless with them in my life, than trade them for all the money in the world.’Are you extending the ‘they’ to these refugees?
                      Try being penniless,you won’t like it.Do you play the violin,I wonder.

                    • greywarshark

                      Cinny
                      I guess you have stopped now. But please don’t bang your head against a brick wall. It hurts me to watch it – don’t know about you!

                    • Cinny

                      Life is more important than money. Life is not a competition.

                      Try being penniless you say… been there, like I said life is more important than money.

                      Your turn Zorb…………

                      Grey 🙂 It’s rather fascinating this interaction like a psychological experiment. All good here and thank you.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1.1.2

            Opportunists

            So is Peter Thiel, and what’s wrong with that again? I know some answers to that question. Do you?

            As for your betters on Manus Island, their refugee status can easily be tested against international and NZ law.

            State your case. Please 😈

      • Cinny 6.1.2

        Twisting the narrative again Zorb?

        Ha ! Rose coloured glasses, you have no clue.

        Yes people flee their countries so they are not killed, you call them opportunists!

        Have I told you about Ngan? Her husband was murdered by the Khmer Rouge, she fled with her children, one of them a toddler, hiding during the day and running through the jungle at night, eating bugs and roots. Eventually making it to NZ as a refugee.

        She’s now a NZ citizen, helps out in the community, her 3 children have all gone through university. Her family is an asset to our country.

        Is she an opportunist too? Herself and her family would all be dead now if they had stayed there.

        Then we hear the… what about the people here that need housing? Well what are YOU doing to help them Zorb? Last time you told me you were too busy working and paying for your own rent to help anyone else. Go figure, complain people aren’t getting enough help, yet do nothing to help them yourself.

        Are you worried you are going to miss out on something if we allow manus island refugees into NZ?

        • Zorb6 6.1.2.1

          Forget the heart warming anecdote. We have a housing shortage. I guess you have a home so you’re alright eh.

          • Cinny 6.1.2.1.1

            What are you doing to help those without a home Zorb? The housing for refugees is already accounted for.

            Prior government is to blame for housing issues in NZ. Current government is trying to resolve it.

            Homeless people are generally fine with us letting in refugees.

            “Massey University sociology professor Paul Spoonley said migrants created a net economic gain for New Zealand, contributing more to tax coffers than they took out.”

            “Economists say the long term benefits of taking in refugees need to become as much a part of the debate as the upfront costs.”
            http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/71875305/Refugees-are-good-for-NZs-economy-economists-say

            • Zorb6 6.1.2.1.1.1

              ‘Homeless people are generally fine with us letting in refugees.’you just ‘sense’ this do you?Show some evidence if you have some.When NZ’ers are sleeping in cars ,they deserve to be helped first ,its logical to those that appreciate logic.

              • Cinny

                I’ve asked around Zorb, I help the homeless do you?

                • Zorb6

                  Yes.My feedback is clear.Charity begins at home.Go down to the Marae in Mangere and ask them what they think of your plans.

                  • Cinny

                    Charity begins at home? The whole earth is home to humans.

                    I don’t live in Auckland, but am happy to go to the local marae here and ask them.

                    Meanwhile… you still have not answered my question… what do YOU do to help those suffering homelessness etc in NZ?

                    • Zorb6

                      Let us know what they tell you after you visit the Marae.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Been there done that.

                      Rangi told Te Karere that if we were opening up our marae to refugees “then we should be doing it for our own people living on the streets and those struggling to find homes.”

                      What was left out of the news item, says Rangi, was that he has no problem with the extra 250 refugees a year. And it wasn’t a case of welcoming either refugees or local homeless. Rangi reckons New Zealand, like his marae, are able to do both.

                      His marae has an ongoing relationship with Iraqi refugees in that community. It supports them and helps educate Iraqis about Māori values and history. As far as Rangi is concerned, it all boils down to manaakitanga. And he’s confident other marae in Tamaki feel the same way.

                      Not that you’d* get that from the news item.

                      *they’re talking about you, Zorb6. 😆

                    • Zorb6

                      So I was correct,endorsed by what Rangi said.The fact he was not opposed to another 250 added to the refugee quota is not a salient point in this discussion.When Cinny pops down,she can ask him about NZ welcoming and housing a couple of thousand more.Be very interested in what he says.

                    • Cinny

                      Once again you refuse/avoid answering my question Zorb…

                      What are YOU doing to help with homelessness in NZ?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Rangi said we should do both. I know it suits your delusions to ignore that and twist his words. He works with refugees, so I think he just might know about their families.

                      You were wrong: Rangi rejected what you said. All you’re doing now is displaying your low character.

                    • Zorb6

                      @Cinny…I donate to worthy causes.
                      @OAB…your comprehension is suss,if you interpret what Rangi said as being anything other than what I stated.

                    • Cinny

                      Nice to know you give money to a cause you deem worthwhile, zorb.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Rangi:

                    it wasn’t a case of welcoming either refugees or local homeless. Rangi reckons New Zealand, like his marae, are able to do both.

                    His marae has an ongoing relationship with Iraqi refugees in that community. It supports them and helps educate Iraqis about Māori values and history. As far as Rangi is concerned, it all boils down to manaakitanga.

                    Zorb6:

                    They’re all opportunists.

                    One of these things is not like the other one.

  7. piper 7

    Our present coalition have made offers to the P.N.G. AND Aussie governments,what more can they do.

    As for Gerry,he and quite a few of the old guard nats will be considering over the holiday break,can we take or be bothered bleeting for the next three years across the house.

    • Puckish Rogue 7.1

      They can make the offer and then stop sticking their noses in the business of our most important ally

        • Cinny 7.1.1.1

          From the same article that you posted Baba…

          “However, the timing of the leak, and several others in Australian publications, suggests rising levels of frustration within the Australian Government that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was putting undue pressure on a domestic Australian policy issue.”

          Some more info to enlighten you Baba…

          “this hasn’t become the media spectacle one might expect – only two reporters have been there to cover the story.

          “The Australian government has tried very hard to shape the narrative about what is happening on Manus and Nauru, and it’s done so very effectively, because it’s so hard for journalists to be able to go there and to tell the stories of what is happening,” says Elaine Pearson, director, HRW Australia.”

          “Photojournalist Matthew Abbott tried to go to Manus Island last week, but was refused entry. A year earlier, he published a story on Manus locals brutally attacking two refugees.

          When he tried to enter Papua New Guinea in the visa on arrival line the immigration officer said “are you involved with publishing disruptive material from lManus Island? That’s when I knew that there was no way I was getting to Papua New Guinea,” says Abbott.”

          http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/listeningpost/2017/11/manus-island-australia-pulling-media-strings-171118083724605.html

          • Baba Yaga 7.1.1.1.1

            “However, the timing of the leak, and several others in Australian publications, suggests rising levels of frustration within the Australian Government that Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was putting undue pressure on a domestic Australian policy issue.”

            So?

            The rest of your post is a story about a photo journalist who didn’t even visit Manus making unsubstantiated claims, and the head of HRW. Not very informative. Or credible.

            • Cinny 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Not very informative or credible? yeah right lmao.

              First up the photojournalist was RETURNING to Manus Island, he had visited there last year and did a story on it but was refused entry this time because the story didn’t shine the situation in a positive light.

              “During my trip to Manus in 2016, I witnessed the aftermath of two refugees being beaten up with metal pipes by a mob of locals, one of the reasons the men were – and still are – too afraid to leave the camp. I got detained for photographing the violent attack. Police told me not to publish the photos and the manager of the detention centre warned me: “What you do now will determine whether you are ever allowed to visit PNG again.” I published the photos.”

              Obviously you didn’t watch the 9min story which FEATURED on last weeks episode of The Listening Post (weekly programme that examines and dissects the world’s media, how they operate and the stories they cover) on Al Jazeera, which I posted. Photo’s often speak volumes.

              “Typically, the images Australians are seeing are distant and limited. Taken from afar, they lack the faces and personal stories that tend to affect audiences. They fail to capture what’s happening up close.
              And the few outlets the authorities in Canberra have allowed into the camp: The Australian newspaper and Sky – both owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp – and Channel 9, are known for sticking to the government’s line.”

              Images are an important part of journalism, what would online newspapers be like without the pictures? What would TV news be like without the pictures?

              Here’s a handy dandy link to the photojournalists work from his trip to Manus Island last year.
              http://www.matthewabbott.com.au/PHOTOJOURNALISM/Camp-Dead-End—Manus-Island-2016/3/caption

              • Baba Yaga

                The journalist hasn’t been there for a year. And they are recounting abuses we already know occurred. How does that change anything about the character of the inhabitants our government wants to welcome into our society?

                • Cinny

                  The journalist was refused entry, along with a number of other reporters when he tried to revisit. Which reeks of a coverup

                  The character of the australian government is what is questionable.

                  • Baba Yaga

                    Being refused entry doesn’t reek of anything. The Australian Government is trying to stop an avalanche of illegals arriving in their countries from nations who need to get their own shit together. That our government is prepared to undermine Australia’s efforts is more than mildly pathetic.

  8. Michael 8

    Brownlee is calculating that everyone else has forgotten his government made the same offer. He may well be right, present readers excepted.

  9. piper 9

    The Aussies,now found another passport outsider in their ranks of governing government,how long,snap election on the cards then we shall have a proper ally on our side.

  10. Tanz 10

    Labour never campaigned on this pre-election (not surprised), nor did they say they were going to throw three million dollars of taxpayer money at the cause.
    All we have had so far is backtracking and fudging of policies promised pre-election. Even Pike River, for crying out loud.

    Also, National did not push and push the issue as Ardern is, telling our big neighbour what they should be doing. Winston, where are you on this? Totally invisible so far…or maybe regretting selling out for baubles galore. One good thing, Kingmaker for Winston has gone forever and 2020 (or sooner) will pretty much be only a two-horse race. National have already risen in the polls since the election (which of course, they won).

  11. Sparky 11

    Seem to be doing a lot things like National including pursuit of the CP(TPP)…..

  12. Cinny 12

    Media silence in Aussie around this issue says it all really….

    “Media missing in Manus

    With an escalating crisis on Manus Island, where are all the reporters on the ground?

    And now to the other big story of the week, at least in some sections of the media.

    And no, not Sophie Monk, we’re talking about the developing crisis on Manus Island:”

    http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s4760651.htm

  13. Delia 13

    At least Labour get a response from Australia, National were barely noticed by them, bit like a nice lap dog in the room.

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