The AFR seems to report an employer moaning about the shortage of suitable labour as often as it does iron ore price rises. A lengthy feature last week rounded up a bunch of them under the angle: “By strangling immigration indefinitely, the Morrison government is placing politics above economic recovery. It’s a gamble that could backfire badly.” (The irony of using Neil Perry as the lede example, given the Rockpool Group’s wage theft record, seems to have been lost on the masthead.) The hospitality industry stories were much the same as a conversation I had on Tuesday night with the manager of a thriving Sunshine Coast restaurant. Yes, it was very hard to get staff. Some places were only opening five nights or less because of the labour shortage, people were putting in long hours, there weren’t the backpackers, the student visas. So had the restaurant increased its pay rates, was it paying more to entice staff from other establishments?