Josefin Malmqvist

Immigration – talk of the today.

6 kommentarer

Listened to Damian Green tonight, Shadow Minister of Immigration. Spoke about why the Conservatives are so far ahead in the polls, between 5-18 points.

Gordon Brown is just incompetent, he argued, which definitely assists the Conservatives. He may be far more intelligent and well-read than Tony Blair, but he sure doesn’t know how to talk to people about politics.

Further David Cameron’s charisma is an advantage, naturally. A charming Conservative! Amazing! Also the fact that the Conservatives are united on a parliamentary level is something unique we often take for granted in other countries. In Britain, high up Conservatives use(ed) to criticize one another using the national press. Delightful. Glad that time is over…

Now, immigration is considered one of the two most important political issues along with health care. Interesting that when people feel fear, tension or out of control, a political issue such as immigration keeps  popping up, now just as in the 60s and 70s. People feel that a recession might be coming, with the fear of losing their jobs and the biggest threat is naturally people from other countries coming to steal their jobs…

About 200 000 per year immigrate to Britain, which is approximately the size of Birmingham every 5th year. Brown has calculated that 3 million new houses will be needed the coming years. Quite a lot. It’s hard to grasp these massive numbers. (For those of you who understand Swedish, have a look at the previous post for guidance).

One more number. Today, approximately 1 million people under the age of 25 do nothing here in Britain. 1 million! They don’t work, don’t study – nothing. They don’t have any qualifications. How are they expected to participate to the economy? No wonder there are problems…

The Conservatives here suggests setting limits, establishing specific numbers of people allowed to come in to the country. (And no, don’t worry – I asked him and asylum seekers are not included) Anyway, the idea being that a certain number of work permits be issued every year. And a specialized boarder police be educated.

Green also realized the limitations the Conservatives face, among other things being able to explain themselves in a simple, comprehensible and shortcut-way. If you’re on TV you only get 8-10 seconds to say what you want to say. That’s it. It’s all about adjusting to the format.

This is a very interesting topic, obviously stirring up some emotions. ”Britishness” was another theme, something that probably is instinctively transmitted and nothing you can learn in a textbook as the Socialists here seem to think. They have introduced a test of Britishness, like a pop-quiz, where you are expected to be able to answer a certain number of questions. Green admitted he himself was not able to answer all of the questions! However, believing that a pop-quiz to which you can learn all the answers is a true measure of something so hard to define as a sense of nationality is not only naïve but foolish.

UK boarder agency for info on the bureaucracy in general. Quite interesting as this was what I wrote about on the blog a couple of days ago. I promise Damian, I’m working on my Britishness. Anyway, the transmission of values is important. ”People used to kill each other over political differences in this country. And now they don’t anymore. It is important to understand why”, Green further argued.

I agree with a lot of the things he said (being a former Oxford PPEist), however I do not agree that the solution to the problem is setting quotas. Then you haven’t fully understood what causes the problem in the first place. It is not people coming to the UK that is the problem; the problem is that they are not integrated into society. Then that is what you should be aiming at solving, rather than closing the boarders. The higher fences we build, the more problems we create for the future. So tear down the fences and print textbooks instead. That’s definitely a better way forward.

6 tankar om “Immigration – talk of the today.

  1. You truly live up to your stereotype as a PPE’ist: cold-hearted as a fish. You cannot simply talk about immigration in terms of statistics. Immigration is a socio-geographic phenomena more than it has got anything to do with your subject [sic].
    Stop being such a little conservative whore. I hope someday misfortune strikes you so that you get down from your pedestal and realise that not everyone had the privilege to attend a school like the one we attend. Stop judging less fortunate people who immigrate as a virus.

    In conclusion, you sick bastard.

  2. Josefin,

    ”One more number. Today, approximately 1 million people under the age of 25 do nothing here in Britain. 1 million! They don’t work, don’t study – nothing. They don’t have any qualifications. How are they expected to participate to the economy? No wonder there are problems…”

    This is misleading and fuzzy. The 1m young unemployed don’t just sit around watching daytime TV. The system doesn’t work like that. If you receive incapacity benefit, then you’re unable to work. If you’re receiving Job Seekers’ Allowance, you have to be have been actively seeking work (and after 6 months they’ll force you to retrain or take a job below your skill level).

    So, it’s false that the unemployed in Britain ”do nothing”. They are either medically unable to work, or are actively seeking work.

  3. what do you think of Public Work schemes for those ”doing nothing”, Roosevelt style? Effective measure or social interference?

  4. It seems that even being a non-heartless Oxford student can’t teach you manners.

    Ho hum.

  5. Here’s a prime example of how NOT to do things:

    – the blogger should realize that anyone who posts in a public forum is expected to be able to back his/her claims when confronted with different views.

    – the so-called ”Non-heartless Oxford student”, despite attending a theoretically elite school such as Oxford, seems NOT to be able to construct a logical, constructive counter-argument. Instead he/she opts for the easy solution: insult and bashing. Bravo! It’s comforting to think that the so-called elite has such highly developed thinking skills. I weep for the future, and I am not even British…

    – it’s universally considered good manners for a blogger to answer comments. However, in this case, a lack of answer might prove to be a sign of wisdom.

    Let us keep in mind that there are two ways of looking at the world: the way things are, and the way things should be. The blogger seems to go for the former, some commenters seem to go for the latter.

    Now I realize why I like Mathematics. In Math, weak arguments are very easily demolished. In Politics and Philosophy, the vagueness and lack of precision of words leads to self-infatuated, hollow speeches.

    Let me know when you people decide to discuss politics in an intelligent way. From what I have seen, everyone is buried deep in their own trenches here, and no one is going to change his/her mind, no matter what. That is no philosophy, that is dogma. Cheers!

  6. Indeed, immigration does bring out some strong emotions, that’s for sure.

    As for Peter’s comment, I agree with you. I was simply reproducing parts of Mr Green’s speech and I do not know what he included in that calculation. The discussion is interesting though, indiffrent from how large percentage of that million currently recieve incapacity benefits or are looking for a job. The problem is rather 1 million young people not being able to work! How come? Why is that so? 50 years ago that was certainly not the case. I’m definately not questioning whether these people are not ill, don’t get me wrong, I’m simply worried about the development in our society when young, healthy people aren’t able to work. We have to dare to tackle the problem, rather than just keeping on paying for the result.

    As for the heartless student[sic], the solution is for you to read the last paragraph where I clearly stated that I did not think you could look at immigration in terms of statistics. I believe immigration is one of the absolut best things that is happening to out western democracies. I am very much opposed to isolationalism, and in favour of free immigration, as long as we’ve got the means of taking care of the people we welcome. The cultural advantages we gain through immigration is pricelss. If it wouldn’t have been for the free movement within the EU, I wouldn’t have been able to come to England and study in the first place. I wish more people, from the rest of the world, get the same opportunity.

    As for TJ, if you are refering to the New Deal, with increased state control of the economy and money supply interventions to control prices and production, I am very much opposed to such ”solutions”. I believe in an openess in society, with free movement of capital, labour, goods and services as the solution. Decreasing the scope of the welfare state, trying to focus on core issues for a government. Though, creating job opportunities might be one of them; not by state funding or state run companies, but rather by increasing the incentive for people to work through decreased taxes for people who work, decreasing union power, etc. Tackling the problem rather than later just trying to get rid of the effects by giving people money; people who’d really rather work.

    I hope my replies have brought some clarity and I am terribly sorry for the delay of reply. In my defence, I’ve had an absolutely mad week… Thank you for you comments.x


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