The Good Old Daily Telegraph On Immigration - Once More, With Feeling - Part I: Ah Yes, Those Mythical Jobs We Shun
(I would normally despatch all comment from The Daily Telegraph relating to immigration policy to the outer reaches of The Daily Treasongraph; however, today it contains two examples of its immigrationism so absolutely gorgeous, so sleekit in its attempt to shove a little propaganda under our post-prandial Christmas radars, that they merit mention here.
Today, I have proclaimed my identity to them like Aragorn in front of the Hall of Edoras - and Tolkien does not record whether The King of Gondor was required to provide a daytime telephone number, or proclaim himself twice because the first time his communication was considered spam.... )
Philip Johnston, the 'Daily Telegraph's' Home Affairs Editor, has an article in today's paper entitled 'A challenge we have never faced before'.
He quotes some pretty scary immigration numbers -
"Last year, 2004, saw the highest net migration on record, with an inflow of 223,000 - 72,000 more than the previous year, largely as a result of the EU's expansion.
The number of Britons alone leaving increased to 208,000 - the highest annual outflow on record. This year, 2005, net migration is forecast to be even higher at 255,000, before reducing to an annual rate of about 145,000 from 2008.
When Labour took office in 1997 net migration was about 50,000 a year".
Of course, there was no mention of a desire to increase immigration in Labour's 1997 election manifesto.
"This great movement of people, a trend seen across Europe, is a dilemma for politicians. The indigenous populations of their own countries have largely stagnated and in many cases would, without immigration, decline."
This is an argument straight out of the thinking of Scotland's Haughty Immigration Tsars' Edicts. Where is it cast in stone that the population of the United Kingdom must stay at a particular level? As I recall saying before, if a population elects to drink, drug, contracept and abort itself into historical oblivion, what business does their government have stopping them?
This line of thought shows just how enmeshed is the thinking of the corporatist left and the corporatist right on the subject of immigration. The corporatist left wants immigrants to pay for social programs and the welfare state, the corporatist right wants immigration to provide consumers for its markets, and both forget we live in societies of citizens, not service-users or consumers.
"But the sheer volume of arrivals places a strain on public services and cultural tensions are never far below the surface, as witnessed recently in France".
This is an insidious line of thought; one which I am sure is very much unintentional from the usually sober and thoughtful Johnston, but one which, according to my observations, first appeared in the Sunday Telegraph in an article entitled 'We may have no ghettoes - but Britain must beware the paradox of integration' by my fellow Glaswegian Niall Ferguson, in which, from his perch in Cambridge, Mass., he wrote, "south-eastern Bradford is not the same as north-eastern Paris. But it is not so different that Britain can indulge in schadenfreude. France's problems may be the result of a failure of social integration. But Britain may yet find that success, too, can bring its own unlooked-for trouble."
This line of thought assumes that beneath the surface of every Brit lurks a ravening racialist. Its roots are in the farthest far-left, in that it assumes that there is no obligation on the immigrant to conform to the mores of the culture in which they have, after all, been permitted to reside. The very fact that immigrants seek to make new lives here as opposed remaining in their countries of origin is as powerful a statement of the superiority of our culture over theirs as the works of Shakespeare, Marlowe, Austen, Kipling and Wordworth combined; and it is strange to see Johnston seem to try to dispute it.
Anglo-Saxon-Celtic culture must be top dog in this country, or it, and the country, are nothing; an outcome which would render the entire immigration exercise worthless.
He then rolls through the various acts of what some perceive as treachery on the subject of immigration perpetrated by politicians past and present. As far as the youthful David Cameron is concerned, if he wishes a softer immigration policy, then, as I wrote last week, one is sure his Oxfordshire constituents in Witney will be delighted to host the new detention centes which will be required to house the waves of new asylum-seekers.
Johnston then notes,
"With unemployment at a low rate, most settlers are easily absorbed into the workforce, though many are in the black economy".
Just how black has been recorded in a very, very lengthy letter I have sent the newspaper's editor containing some examples from the back archives of 'Foreign Criminals Of The Day'.
However, Johnston then notes,
"A points-based immigration system will make it almost impossible for the lower-skilled to stay indefinitely.
Yet it is often the low-skilled that an advanced country needs most - to do the jobs the indigenous population shuns. "
Where is the evidence?
There are two great big mile-wide fallacies which hover round the 'jobs the natives we won't do' argument like particularly aggravating sandflies.
The first is that those business people who make that comment never, ever say what efforts they have made to recruit British staff at a rate of pay on which an honest British citizen, burdened by taxation to provide services they do not use and faced with local taxation bills exloding at rates far above those of inflation, can actually live.
The second is more challenging. They never say whether or not their own management or stewardship of their businesses has been so poor that to ensure survival they require to cut costs from whatever quarter; or whether the amount they wish to pay themselves is incompatible with paying British citizens a living wage.
If they don't want to pay living wages so they can a new BMW, then they can face the market with the rest of us and go screw themselves.
Johnston concludes by saying,
"In a world on the move, however, it is a phenomenon to which we will have to adapt. If we do not, the political and social consequences 20 years from now could be bleak".
For some of us, it's bleak enough already. And immigration is only going to make it worse.