Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Australia doesn't want quality immigrants

As in America and Britain, low-skilled illegals can get in with little trouble. In the Australian and British cases, they just have to say the magic word "asylum". But in all three countries it's not so easy if you are highly qualified and likely to be an unusually valuable citizen

AUSTRALIAN universities are training top scientists in areas of importance to the national economy. Some of these students come from overseas, pay fees for their education and want to work and settle in Australia. They are young, highly qualified and have lived in Australia for some years, so they are making informed judgments when they apply for permanent residence with a view to becoming Australian citizens. They meet all the Department of Immigration and Citizenship criteria for permanent residence. Yet they have been pushed to the end of the immigration queue, where they face several years of delay before being considered for permanent residence. While they are waiting they cannot work in scientific positions of benefit to Australia.

Until mid-2008, students completing PhDs in Australian universities were eligible to be considered for permanent residence within three to six months, with the prospect of being eligible for Australian citizenship after a further two years. Two changes were then made to the skilled migration program. Priority was moved from independent skilled migrants (category 885) to those sponsored by employers, and a critical skills list was created. This list does not include specialisations in advanced areas of science in which recent PhDs have graduated.

As a consequence of these changes in immigration procedures, the permanent residence applications of the majority of PhD research scientists who graduated during 2008 and since that time will now not be considered until at least mid-2011. This pushes the likely time when they can expect a decision to 2012. This means a four-year delay.

While waiting in the immigration queue, these PhD graduates cannot apply for many positions, particularly those of high scientific value and those with long-term career prospects. These require permanent residence, if not Australian citizenship. Both government and private employers are reluctant to apply for immigration status for such positions. Heads of scientific laboratories often cannot spare the resources for the lengthy process involved in immigration sponsorship. Some high-level science positions that PhDs trained in Australia could fill are left empty and scientific work is stalled because PhD graduates waiting for permanent residence are confined to limited temporary positions.

Australia is thus wasting the talents and training of PhD graduates who have proved their ability to work at the leading edge of science.

The scientific problems on which we worked as students in human nutrition and food processing are typical. Our research was focused on improving the taste, texture and health-giving qualities of food so as to encourage consumers to enjoy eating more healthily. Such shifts in diet enable people to reduce the high costs of negative lifestyle diseases, contributing to the long-term sustainability of Australia's high living standards. On the production side, research in food technology aims to use water, soils, energy and other resources more efficiently to improve environmental sustainability. Other recent graduates whose permanent residence applications are stalled have worked on PhDs in renewable fuel technology, superconductivity, material science, radiopharmaceutical research, the development of vaccines and immunisations, hydrogen economy and other areas of advanced applied science that are important to maintaining Australia's position at the cutting edge of science and technology.

Studying for advanced degrees in science and contributing through conference papers and publications in peer-refereed journals takes commitment. So does the decision to become an Australian citizen. Yet although we have made these commitments, our lives have been put on hold. We have been told that it will take at least to 2011, and probably longer, before our applications for permanent residence are considered.

Scientists are an important component of any nation's strength and dynamic potential. The market for scientists is international. There are attractive openings worldwide. The US congress is considering a bill that would prevent PhDs trained in the US from leaving the economy. The bill is aimed at amending immigration legislation to exempt science PhDs from migration quotas. Australia does not need new legislation, but immigration rules and procedures should be amended so that scientists trained in Australia are able to work in their fields of expertise and are not discouraged from becoming Australians.


Wow! Australian authorities finally realize that some Tamil "refugees" are terrorists

Sri Lankan terrorists should be returned to Sri Lanka for appropriate action by the Sri Lankan authorities

FOUR of the Tamil asylum-seekers rescued by the Oceanic Viking and offered a special deal by the Rudd Government will be refused visas after ASIO determined them a threat to national security. The government lobbied furiously to resettle the 78 Sri Lankans swiftly following their stand-off aboard the Australian Customs boat, but The Australian revealed today that four of the Tamils being held at Christmas Island have been issued with adverse security assessments by Australia's chief domestic security agency, ASIO.

In a further complication for authorities struggling to manage a fresh wave of boat-borne asylum-seekers, it is believed one of the four is a woman who travelled to Australia in the company of her two young children. The situation presents a conundrum for the Government, which cannot return the four to Sri Lanka without exposing them to potential harm from the Sri Lankan Government, which in May crushed the decades-old Tamil insurgency with a comprehensive military offensive.

Australia would also be in breach of its legal obligations if it returned the four, as the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has designated all 78 of the Sri Lankans as legal refugees. However, people subject to adverse security assessments are by law ineligible for an Australian visa, which means the four have no hope of coming to the Australian mainland. Other countries will also be highly reluctant to take them now that Australia has deemed them a security risk.

The four were part of a group of 16 Tamils who flew from Indonesia to Australia in the final days of last year, amid concerns about their background. They had been held in Tanjung Pinang for about a month after agreeing to leave the Oceanic Viking. On December 29, six of the Sri Lankans, including the four who have been issued adverse security assessments, flew via charter aircraft from Indonesia directly to Christmas Island. The next day, 10 of their fellow passengers flew on a commercial flight into Australia, where they joined other Oceanic Viking passengers, who had flown in before Christmas.

Of the 78 rescued, 44 are in a UN transit facility in Romania awaiting resettlement in the US and Canada, 18 have come to Australia and 16 remain in Tanjung Pinang.

The revelations pose new questions about the Rudd government's handling of the stand-off and whether the decision to offer a special deal to leave the boat was driven by security fears.

Yesterday, ASIO refused to comment on the matter. However, an Immigration Department spokesman, Sandi Logan, confirmed adverse security assessments had been issued. "The passengers from the Oceanic Viking who received adverse security assessments will not be granted permanent visas to resettle in Australia," Mr Logan said. "They are being held in secure and appropriate detention arrangements while Australia continues to explore resettlement options or they choose to depart voluntarily." Mr Logan confirmed Australia would not seek to deport the four to Sri Lanka, acknowledging it would be a breach of the UN Refugee Convention. [Rubbish! There is no convention protecting terrorists]


Qld. Public hospital negligence: Couple forced into dangerous baby delivery at home

And the response is theorizing. No inquiry ordered. It needs a front-page story in a major newspaper to generate an official inquiry

A Stafford Heights couple forced to deliver their baby alone at home are seeking a ``please explain’’ from their hospital. Royal Brisbane & Women’s Hospital (RBWH) sent Louisa Tomon home seven hours after she presented at the maternity ward on December 22.

When Mrs Tomon returned to her parents’ house, she knew the baby was coming. The Tomon’s called the ambulance ``straight away’’, but within 10 minutes the baby had arrived. Husband Matt Tomon delivered baby Julian despite the umbilical cord being wrapped around his neck.

``The first few minutes weren’t great, he was pretty blue when he came out and wasn’t really breathing and then he eventually started crying,’’ Mr Tomon said. "It was the best sound. It’s just one of those situations, it could have been a lot worse.’’

They question why they were sent home when Mrs Tomon claimed to have had three contractions every 10 minutes and had undergone an internal examination, a process known to kick-start childbirth.

RBWH executive director of Women’s and Newborn Services, Professor Ian Jones, said there were often a variety of reasons for a patient to leave a birthing suite after being admitted. ``One of the most common is because contractions become less intense and less frequent, or stop all together,’’ he said. ``This is called spurious labour.’’

Professor Jones said in these cases the patient was given the option to go home and return if they progressed to labour, or be admitted to an appropriate ward. Professor Jones said there was no evidence to suggest the high standard of care was not followed in this case.

Queensland Minister for Health Paul Lucas did not wish to comment specifically on the case but a spokeswoman for the minister said: ``If the patient or any patient has any genuine concerns they are welcome to contact the Health Quality and Complaints Commission (HQCC) regarding this.’’


Nasty one for the "extreme weather" cries of the Warmists

Like the Southern USA, Northern Australia has a lot of very severe wind events -- called hurricanes in the USA and cyclones in Australia. So Northern Australia is a prime place for detecting an increase in "extreme" weather. But it isn't happening. So how do the Warmists respond? Not in a scientific way by deferring to the facts but by saying that extreme weather is like the second coming of Christ or the collapse of capitalism: It will happen "one day"

AUSTRALIAN government climate experts have failed to detect an increase in the intensity of tropical cyclones after analysing 26 years of data since the early 1980s. Climate scientists have warned that Australia should expect to see more intense cyclones in the future fuelled by rising global temperatures caused by greenhouse gases. But this latest research from seven Bureau of Meteorology scientists shows that so far there is no conclusive evidence to suggest this is already happening.

Scientists told The Courier-Mail the findings, which will fuel the debate among skeptics of human-caused climate change, did not mean climate change would not cause an increase in the frequency of powerful cyclones in the future.

Appearing in the prestigious Journal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres, published by the American Geophysical Union, the scientific paper analysed satellite data and images for all the tropical cyclone seasons in Australia from 1981 to 2007. The research concluded: "In the Australia region, no significant trends in the total numbers of Tropical Cyclones, or in the proportion of the most intense TCs, have been found."

Co-author of the research, Dr John McBride, said: "We still expect more intense cyclones but we are comfortable with the fact that you cannot yet see that in the data." The research did find a positive trend in the numbers of the most intense cyclones in the Southern Indian Ocean region. But the authors said while it was "possible" that the trend could show climate change at work, this finding could instead be down to "changes in data quality".

In theory, scientists say ongoing rises in ocean temperatures should see the numbers of intense cyclones increase. Professor David Karoly, a world-leading climatologist at the University of Melbourne, said the research did not change this expectation. "It's very very difficult with a 20 or 30-year time scale to separate a climate change signal from natural variation. You would not expect to see a signal until about 2030."

Last week Opposition Leader Tony Abbott criticised the Government's proposed emissions trading scheme, saying it should "not politicise events such as floods or cyclones to try to justify a new tax."


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