The government’s special brand of tiger repellent, known as The Pacific Solution, has cost one billion dollars since 2001; processing refugess and asylum seekers onshore here in Australia would have cost 3.5% of that. So Oxfam reports in (PDF) A Price Too High: The cost of Australia’s approach to Asylum Seekers.. (See also the coauthors of the report, A Just Australia.)
Yes, but, no, but… it has stemmed the flood of undesirables washing up on our shores, hasn’t it? Well, maybe. There are arguments to suggest that other factors are also involved here, and that the Pacific Solution itself may or may not have been an essential element. The “tiger repellent” argument is, you may recall, as follows, so nicely told here on God of the Machine:
Guy’s out walking in Manhattan when he sees a street vendor selling unmarked aerosol cans. He’s curious and asks what’s in them, and the vendor says, “Tiger repellent.” The guy points out that there are no tigers in New York City, and the vendor replies, “See how well it works?”
Download the report. Think about it.
Think about the fact too that not one real or potential terrorist seems to have surfaced among all those detained via the Pacific Solution.
See also Hot issues 1: refugees.