Living standards in decline as real wage growth stagnates Australian standards of living have been going down. People are struggling. There is already more poverty than there used to be (and the inevitable plethora of "social problems" that come with that). What nobody seems to want to touch with a 10-foot pole is the role migration has played in all this. 1.7 million people have been added over the last 10 years, resulting in an 8 percent total population increase. But the effects on the labor market are much greater than that, because when we look at the total Australian population, much of that total is composed of older retired people. So we are really talking about an increase of the labor force closer to 13 percent, more likely. You can't do that without it having an effect keeping down wage levels. No wonder real wage growth hasn't been increasing. And then there is a little geographic economic distribution problem. While Australia has plenty of wide open space, most of the good job opportunities are concentrated in just a handful of the major cities. Cost of living in proximity to these cities has become an issue in the last several years. Australia's economy has not been growing geographically evenly. And then guess where most of the migrants settle. It's not in the rural areas. We can see this by the so-called physician shortage in rural areas. It's not because there are no doctors who would want to live out there; the issue is there's less money out there, away from the big cities. And the cost of rent in Melbourne is just insane. This can't go on. Australia has another decade or two at best. Most Australians have little idea what day-to-day living conditions are actually like in other countries like Indonesia or Pakistan, or that Australia is slowly headed towards that direction. Opinions in Australia will change, but it will probably have to become a lot more obviously severe than it is now before there is a reaction. That's not uncommon; most societal and governmental policies are knee-jerk reactions after a problem has been left to grow for long enough that it becomes obvious there should be a change in course. Some of you will no doubt propound more socialism as solution to all these ills. Well, as idyllic as that sounds, the reality is simply that there's very little realistic chance that socialistic policies would ever be implemented to make a substantial difference. You will, no doubt, continue to keep on in denial of this. Go on, advocate for socialism if you must, put your hopes in that, but don't have that alone as your singular comprehensive plan. Living standards will go down the toilet and I'll tell you I told you so, because you were too brain-dead and stubborn to listen. I know this is a little anticipatory, but I know how you people think. BRAIN-DEAD, because you wouldn't listen to reason, you wouldn't think about it. What part of 'socialism isn't going to come to rescue' don't you understand? Sure, maybe you'll get a progressive party coming to power, but it will mostly be lip service, they'll never institute socialism to an extent that it would make a serious dent in the average standard of living. I'm just being pragmatic here. You need to have a plan B. Just to clarify, I'm not calling for no immigration, I'm just saying the numbers will need to be restricted until economic growth and real wage levels can catch pace with the population numbers. Australia is GOING to be a second-rate country. People will not enjoy quality healthcare or a middle class lifestyle. All that is going to be gone out the window. In it's place is going to be permanent poverty. You have natural resources, but we know where all that wealth goes in natural resource-rich countries (I'm saying don't count on those resources to make a difference in the standard of living, and that there's countless examples of this in other countries and places around the world). With poverty will come crime too, won't be able to leave anything outside without it being carried away, violent crime too, just trying to drive that point home. I'm not simply talking about a little less money in your purse. Make whatever decision you want in the end, but just listen and fully consider the line of reasoning in this post. Are you truly 100% sure this won't happen? And if it did happen, would that be a sacrifice you would be consciously willing to make as a trade-off for other goals? Look, if we just have a few quotas we can still have all our favorite Indian and Chinese restaurants. (I never was a fan of Indonesian food anyway, so what do we need them for?) This post has sort of turned into a long rant and, sorry, didn't mean to have it be all about migration. That's just an aspect that rarely seems to get brought up into the open when having discussions about issues involving living standards. Fact is Australia is not on a good course, and I'm open to discussing other reasons why that may be so, and what can be done to turn the ship around.