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Wednesday 19 August 2020

Australian Freedom Of Movement ISN’T

With the departure of the UK from the European Union comes an end to freedom of movement, which some ardent Brexiteers are discovering - rather late in the day - not only applies to all those ghastly foreigners coming here, but Brits going there - like to live and work in mainland Europe, or indeed, own property and retire there.

James Paterson

In order to head off what could be a very ugly revolt, cheerleaders for alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson have been floating a rather different form of free movement. But, as so often with the right-wing press, it is not just what they choose to tell their readers, but what they choose to leave out, that is key.

First out of the blocks with this slice of hokum was the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph, telling readersAustralians call for freedom of movement as part of post-Brexit trade deal … Agreement could be stepping stone to 'Canzuk Union' between Canada, Australia, New Zealand and UK”. And it also could not.

The Tel is nowadays heavily paywalled, but the Murdoch Sun has enterprisingly lifted the story (see how that works, Fred and David?) to let us knowBRITAIN and Australia could bring in a freedom of movement deal between the two countries as part of a post-Brexit trade agreement. Australian MPs are calling for ‘generous provisions’ to allow Brits and Australians to freely live and work in both nations”. How many MPs would that be?

Er, just one. “In a report called ‘A Ripper Deal’, Liberal Party Senator James Paterson wrote that the two countries are ‘bound by deep and historical ties’. Mr Paterson said that rules should be relaxed allowing citizens of Australia and Britain free access to each other's nations - in an arrangement which could be a stepping stone for similar deals with Canada and New Zealand”. James Paterson? Is he related to Sir Les?

"The Sydney Opera House. Looks like a drowning nun"

But do go on. “Mr Paterson wrote: ‘This should require minimal regulatory compliance and be simpler to get than the standard work visas in each country.’ He also wrote that a freedom of movement deal could be the first step to a 'Commonwealth' union. ‘In the long term, a free-trade, free-movement block consisting of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK is an attractive idea in a dangerous world,’” So who is James Paterson?

Apart from being appointed to his Senate seat - rather than elected - Paterson has served as deputy executive director of the Institute of Public Affairs. The IPA is roughly equivalent to UK Astroturf lobby groups like the so-called Taxpayers’ Alliance. The idea of a “Canzuk Union” is his pet project. The Sun article does not name another Australian politician who has backed Paterson’s idea. But the Murdoch press likes the IPA.

But this is total crap. What the Tel and Sun are dangling before soon-to-be-disgruntled Brexiteers is the prospect of a mainly white and English speaking free movement area - an idea which assumes New Zealand and Canada will back it. Which they may not.

Thus another Ron Hopeful ending for the Brexit faithful is exposed as a sham. One of these days, they’ll discover they’ve been had. That story may not have a happy ending.

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Anonymous said...

Wait till the time comes to negotiate a trade deal with India hahahahaha ....

RodJ said...

Just supposing this daft idea becomes reality (for a given, twisted version of reality). I wonder what would happen if a large number of the original inhabitants of Australia, NZ or Canada decided they wanted to move to the UK.

Johnspartacusanonymous said...

Like a zombie version of the between wars notion called imperial preference ? That ended well, along with Chancellor Winston Churchill reinstating the Gold Standard. Weird

Anonymous said...

Oh GREAT. I can't wait to just slip across quickly to the other side of the world through the Atlantic Tunnel and across the ANZAC Bridge.

Sam said...

The IPA is funded by Rupert, Gina Rinehart & other Aussie billionaires and it's stated aim is to completely shred ever single thing that socialists may have had a tiny hand in creating like public broadcasting, aged pensions, Oz's NHS Medicare as I write this from a local glistening hospital with Angel like nurses while being treated for an illness that would have set me back at least $50K in the USA (after paying my modest monthly $38 supplement when working, suspended if unemployed) free schools and even free highways, unemployment benefits and so on. You get the drift. Among their glittering stars of the right they fly to Oz to bore guests witless at dinners is a chap called Brendan O'Neil.