Featured Image for Bill Shorten cops serious flak for tokenistic ‘Australians first’ ad

Bill Shorten cops serious flak for tokenistic ‘Australians first’ ad

Kendall: I’m going to make the most tone-deaf ad ever.

Shorten: Hold my beer.

Opposition leader Bill Shorten is currently facing criticism on Twitter for an “Employ Australians First” ad aired on Channel Nine. It features 12 Australians – who all just happen to be various shades of white.

The ad, which is far from an accurate representation of contemporary Australian society, was attacked by many Twitter users.

The token inclusion of ONE actor of Asian descent wasn’t enough to redeem the ad.

Shorten has apologised after the morning’s backlash:

In November last year, Shorten announced that he would focus on protecting Australian job seekers from being replaced by overseas workers brought in under the 457 Visa.

At the time, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull criticised Shorten for playing the “populist card” in the wake of Donald Trump’s shock win in the U.S. election.

“Having distinguished himself by personally abusing Mr Trump prior to his election as president of the United States, he now says that he wants to heed the lessons of Ohio and Michigan and he wants to stand up for Australian jobs,” Turnbull said.

Turnbull went on to accuse Shorten of hypocrisy, saying:

“The highest number of 457 visas were granted when he was the employment minister. It is around a third more 457 visas were granted when he was employment minister than have been granted over the last 12 months…Bill Shorten was in the Olympic grade of granting 457 visas.”

In April 2017, the Turnbull government announced that it was axing the 457 visa. More than 200 jobs have been cut from the list of occupations that foreign workers can apply for under the new scheme. Since the Government wants funding to train more local workers, Australian companies will have to pay fees for bringing in temporary skilled foreign workers.

The ABC reports that Labor says Turnbull has rushed through the decision to “save his job” and that Pauline Hanson has claimed credit for the changes.

So yeah, basically constant bickering followed by poor decisions. Just your regular old #Auspol, people.

Meanwhile, Turnbull finally got a date with Trump, after an awkward delay. And although their relationship got off to bad start, the two are now getting along just fine. Things are bigly good. Yuge progress!

“It was a wonderful, warm evening of thanks and recognition of those veterans, and of course it was great for Lucy and I to meet with the President and Mrs Trump,” Mr Turnbull told reporters at a press conference in New York on Friday. “That was more family than formal, a very, very warm encounter and a great evening.”


Find someone who looks at you the way Turnbull looks at Trump.

About the author

Stefan is an Adelaide-based freelance writer. In his spare time, he plays tennis badly, collects vinyl and brushes up on his Mandarin. Follow Stefan on Twitter

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