Finally, reason on the front page

There’s finally a voice on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald telling it like it is: At last, we have a real leader – pity that it’s not Rudd

And should Paul Howse, the national secretary of the Australian Workers Union, ever need it, he has my vote:

”The immaturity in political debate in Australia sometimes makes me sick. There are politicians in both the Liberal and Labor parties who are exploiting the issue of race to whip up fear in the community.

”Question time is dominated by 78 people on a boat. We have around 50,000 visa overstayers every year. Is anyone saying this is a national crisis? One reason there is no outrage is that these people are mainly white and speak English. Is anyone demanding we clean out the backpackers’ hostels of Bondi and Surry Hills?”

We’re so worked up by a handful of people coming by boat – despite more arriving by plane to claim asylum – that we must be the laughing stock of the rest of the world. And the main criticism in comments on news websites about the boat arrivals is that they’ve paid thousands to people smugglers, so they must be rich. So it’s baffling that this same vitriol isn’t directed towards those who fly in.

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