Tuesday, February 08, 2005


So, immigration has become an election issue.

"It means controls that weed out the abuses, make sure that it is only people who we really need to come to Britain that come here, but do so in a way that doesn't actually damage our economy."

A few thoughts:

Britain has accepted "economic migrants" for generations. "Economic migrants" tend to come to Britain to work. They do add benefit to economy and the community - about £2 billion or more per year. As opposed to the young, white chav that's become the new symbol of Britain's underclass.

Our wise new Home Secretary again:

"The points system to determine what labour skills are needed will consist of four tiers: highly skilled, skilled, low skilled and student/specialist (such as football players)."

"There aren't enough jobs to go around." And, where would the London hotel, pub and restaurant trade be without foreign workers? Perhaps retired foreign footballers should take up the jobs. The UK has more or less full employment. (I'm beginning to sound like a Tory here but,) Most of those out of work are unskilled and a fair percentage of those are either unemployable or will only work in the grey market. We certainly need skilled migrants and those with fewer skills, but willing to work at the lower end of the market - see London ents business above.

The plurality (pdf file - see table 2.2) migrating to the UK are white and/or English speaking. Are political parties saying that there are too many Americans, Australians and South Africans in the UK? Should David Soul hand back his citizenship? What about Rupert Murdoch? What will happen to Earl's Court? Or, is the true message: "No darkies, thanks. Particularly Muslim darkies."

The UK's population is stagnating because of a lowering birth rate. We are below zero population growth (ZPG). Some 80,000 Britons migrate out of the UK each year. We actually need people of working age to fill jobs, to pay taxes that help provide services and fund pensions. What about the demographic timebomb? Wouldn't it help if we invited in people from cultures where birthrates are higher, to help stimulate the UK's birthrate? And, pay my pension when I retire.

Britishness or Englishness: Immigration opponents fear that the "swamping" of Britain will destroy our culture. I thought one our nation's virtues was its sense of fair play, willingness to help those less fortunate and create an inclusive society. Or has Thatcherite (and now Blairite) policies changed that?

More views:
Lib Dem view
"Veritas" (like the party leader, this site doesn't deep link)

:: Posted by pete @ 12:30