For the past decade or so, a thorn in the side of the whole “queue jumper” thing has been the absence of an actual queue to jump. Excitingly, Our Jools has discovered the queue in Malaysia, and the pleased purse of her lips whenever she says the word “queue” these days (particularly pertaining to the sending of people to the back of it) is indicative of how important this discovery is to her re-election prospects, I mean stopping the vile trade of people smuggling.
Australia will be shipping 800 asylum seekers to the back of the queue in Malaysia and in turn receiving 4000 refugees from the front of the queue, which is a very generous piece of people-trafficking, I mean humanitarianism, indeed.
Now there are a few wrinkles with the queue’s location in Malaysia, not the least being Malaysia’s rather unfortunate lack of being signatory to the UNHCR conventions in a manner not unlike Nauru, and then there’s the whole beating-with-sticks thing, though it’s possible this may fall under the category of “very very tough love” and getting tough plays particularly well with focus groups, I mean is extremely good for people even if they don’t think so at the time, ie while they are being beaten with the sticks.
There’s been one more wrinkle today, which is that Malaysia want to vet asylum seekers before we send them, which is a little perplexing when we are in fact sending them to Malaysia to be vetted at not inconsiderable expense, but I guess since they own the queue, they get to decide who goes in it.