Friday, November 22, 2019
Home Brexit Watch Every party is blind to the biggest issue – immigration

Every party is blind to the biggest issue – immigration

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JEREMY Corbyn has launched his election campaign with a claim to stand up for the many against the ‘elite’. 

How, we might ask, does this square with the party’s radical open-borders stance on immigration, adopted at their conference in September? Rather than standing up for the many against the elite, this policy will expose Britain’s working-class communities to more competition for jobs, more depressed wages, more people piling pressure on housing, local services and infrastructure, on ambulance services, doctors and hospital beds, on a hard-pressed NHS – a key issue in this election campaign – that can never catch up.

There’s nothing new about this. Labour have looked down on the nationalism and patriotism of their traditional working-class supporters of all ethnicities for decades now, showing nothing but contempt for their concerns about the impact of mass immigration on their country.

Corbyn’s Labour, like most of the liberal Left, have forgotten that it is the poor who are the chief beneficiaries of strong national borders and the first losers of open-borders globalism. They seem to have forgotten that it was a post-war Labour government with a strong sense of the nation state that invented and developed the welfare system. Today’s Leftist progressives threaten its viability by opening it up to near-inexhaustible need while simultaneously undermining the social sources of support for generous public provision. Their care and concern for the poor of the ‘sending’ countries – who suffer most when those with the most get-up-and-go (and the resources to make that possible) get up and go – likewise is little better.

Captured decades ago by middle-class cosmopolitan liberals with their university-inculcated neo-Marxist ideas, today’s ‘Left’ is the convenient repository of the identity politics and minority victimhood and, ironically, so beloved of the global corporations, who use liberal-progressive ideology to burnish their ‘ethical’ credentials among the Left-dominated institutions of government, media, entertainment and education. In this hierarchy of PC posturing there are few players more elite than the current British Labour Party leadership, with their extremist commitment to totally open borders because it’s ‘good for the economy’ and isn’t ‘racist’, their distance from Labour’s traditional working-class base on full display.

The Lib Dems’ policy is more sensible than Labour’s, but makes no commitment to reduce numbers and parrots the claim that mass immigration is good for the economy.

The Tories are little better. Before the last election Theresa May recommitted to reducing net migration to the UK to tens of thousands. The Government’s most recent White Paper dropped this target. Its ‘flaccid proposals have no prospect of achieving a significant reduction in the level of net migration’, wrote Alp Mehmet of Migration Watch. He estimated that annual net migration will be about 270,000 (approximately 10 per cent below its five-year average) if the minimum salary for skilled workers is kept at £30,000 a year. However, in the likely event that a lower salary limit of £25,000 or even £21,000 were to be adopted, he warned that millions more jobs would be opened to worldwide competition and that net migration would head towards its previous peak of around a third of a million a year. The latest ONS predictions would seem to confirm this. 

Despite this electoral open goal, Boris Johnson is avowedly liberal on the issue. He has even suggested an amnesty for illegals when speeding up deportations should be his priority if the new waves of cross-Channel migration are to be brought under control. 

Though they notably failed in the past to make any dent in the figures, the Tories at least acknowledged Britain’s migration problem. Now it has reached crisis levels they appear to be turning their backs on it altogether. Why? Do they think the collapse of UKIP gives them a free pass?

Perhaps it does. The Brexit Party’s policy differs little from the Government’s and likewise stresses employment needs.

Though the figures are eye-watering, neither party seems at all concerned about the exponential rise in the numbers of either legal or illegal immigrants. 

This unanimity between the main parties means the issue seems unlikely to feature much in this election, and to be eclipsed by Brexit.

Yet public concern has not gone away. It should present the single biggest vote-winning opportunity for any party willing to take the public’s side against the elites and the quest for cheap labour at any cost.

How long will it be until our politicians wake up to the fact that the country doesn’t want and can’t cope with the collapse of our borders and any effective migrant control?

Boris and the Tories are as hopeless as Labour. They show no awareness of the unsustainable scale of immigration and its demographic implications. So who’s going to challenge them on it? It’s the issue on which the three main parties have the biggest disconnect with voters, but with UKIP nowhere and who knows exactly what the Brexit Party’s libertarians think about this, it’s likely yet again to go unaddressed. Brexit has distracted everyone.

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Will Jones
Will Jones
Dr Will Jones is a maths graduate with a PhD in political philosophy and author of Evangelical Social Theology: Past and Present (Grove, 2017).He blogs at https://faith-and-politics.com/

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