Posted: 11:40 am on 20th August 2013

Chances are you’ve seen one of the ads. You know, those full-page, bleak ads that warn the inhabitants of every marginal seat around the country that “You won’t be settled in Australia”.

The Rudd Government’s anti-people smuggling advertising blitz has already run into trouble. No information campaign has yet been conducted in Pakistan, Iran, or Afghanistan, although ads have been placed in neighbourhood newspapers in the marginal Sydney electorates of Bennelong and Parramatta, and marginal Brisbane electorates Rankin, Oxley, and Moreton.

The advertising campaign has also continued to run during the government’s caretaker period, a move the Opposition has criticised. Under caretaker conventions, ‘matters of contention’ require Opposition approval before taxpayer funds can be spent.

The government has defended its actions. Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus claimed the domestic advertising blitz was crucial to getting the message across to diaspora communities around Australia, and asked the Opposition to support the campaign, “given the shared commitment of all political parties in Australia to the prevention of people smuggling.”

All this has come at an estimated cost of $5 million.

But now the government has gone further.

Last week, it gave nearly $40,000 of your money to a company on Sydney’s North Shore to conduct ‘tracking market research’ for the campaign.

Presumably they cold-call Indonesia to determine whether those people smugglers who receive the Parramatta Advertiser every week, have changed their business model.

Surely it can’t be for any other reason.

CIS Podcast ep 18 – week ending 23 August 2013 | CIS Waste Watch says:

[…] week’s WasteWatch post discusses┬ápolitical advertising and who really was the target of those ads in major newspapers warning about the government’s […]

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