The consequences of an end to mass immigration

 The liberal internationalists tell   us  that   the woes  of  the  world would come upon  us  should we end mass immigration into Britain,  although,  like  Lear threatening retribution, (“I will do such things–   What they are, yet I know not: but they shall be   The terrors of the earth.”)   they are unable  to  say  exactly what the woes  will be.  In fact, I cannot recall ever having seen an article in the British media which goes beyond lazy generalisation about “competing in a global market” or  “driving private enterprise abroad”.    Let me see if I can make a better fist of analysing what would happen.

To stop mass immigration would require Britain’s withdrawal from  the  EU,  the repudiation of other treaties such as the UN Convention  on Refugees (UNCR) and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR),  the repeal of the Human Rights Act (HRA) and the ending  of the rules which make it easy for new immigrants to settle in Britain for the purpose of joining  relatives already here, for marriage and on compassionate grounds.  Consequently,  the consideration of the effects of mass immigration has to take in both  the practical effects of  its cessation on the British labour market and its international repercussions.

The effects on the British labour market

There would be greatly improved employment  opportunities for the British.  The  labour market would tighten and wages would rise. That would place extra costs on employers but they could be offset by a reduction in taxation due to millions of people being employed who are currently unemployed. Nor would  wages rise uniformly. Labour   would  move    into  those   occupations  which  are essential   and  which   cannot  be provided  at    a   distance,   for  example     healthcare     and  education.  We  would   discover    how  occupations   rank in terms of  utility.  Wages  would  rise  in  those occupations which had most utility to  attract  staff from elsewhere. This could have surprising results. We might find that vital jobs considered menial now would pay much more once cheap labour could no longer be brought in.   This would be justice for the many who have seen their jobs undervalued  because of the ability of employers to use cheap immigrant labour.

Employers  would  respond  to labour  tightening   by   using    labour  more  efficiently.   Automation  would increase  and  employers   would  change their attitude  to  the employment of the long-term unemployed,  older  people  and  the disabled. Both  employers and government would  take vocational   training   more seriously.   Government  would  provide  incentives   to  employers  to train  their staff and  increase  the  training  of    public   service   professionals such as doctors and  dentists.  Government would also  be forced  to tackle the mess which is our public education to  ensure  an adequately educated workforce.  

Employers  who could not find the labour to run their business in  this country would have to accept they could not do so.   No one has a right to engage in an enterprise regardless of the effects on the welfare  of the community as a whole which is effectively the present position. Capital which cannot be used in this country can be invested  abroad.  The balance of payments would be improved by  a reduction in money being remitted abroad by immigrants.

The increase in employment of Britons would  be an immense social good beyond  reducing  the cost to the Exchequer  of  the  unemployed,  for people are generally happier and responsible  when employed .    

 The  pressure  on  public services,  transport   and housing would be lessened making  access  to them  easier  for Britons.   In particular, reduced demand for housing would reduce the cost of purchasing, leasing or renting property for private individuals, public bodies, charities  and private companies.   An ending of mass immigration would also curtail  the substantial cost of providing  the benefits of the welfare state to immigrants as soon as they gain the right to legal long term residence in Britain.

Fewer legal  immigrants would allow much greater supervision of visitors to Britain – a significant minority of whom are health tourists  or who are here for criminal purposes – and a proper control and investigation of illegal immigrants. No more sending suspected illegals to the Croydon reception office under their own speed or leaving ports and airfields with an inadequate or completely absent Borders Agency  presence.   IThe repeal of the HRA, our departure from the EU  and the repudiation of the ECHR and the UNCHR  would allow Britain to deport people at will.  We could then not only refuse new immigrants but  start removing the  illegal immigrants who are already here.

Would there be an unmanageable  labour shortage?

The  idea  that  Britain  is  short of  labour  for  most  purposes  is    demonstrably  absurd.   The official figure  for those of working  age who are economically inactive in the UK is  approximately 9.5 million, or nearly a quarter of the age group. http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=12.  Clearly not all of those would be able or willing to work,  but equally clearly  a large proportion would be able and willing to work  if  the conditions  were  right, for example,   wages  rose,   employers  became  more accommodating  and the benefits system was tightened as the  number  of opportunities for work rose.    .

The   claim  that  the   indigenous   population   will  not   do   the jobs  immigrants take  is  demonstrably false.  In areas of the country with  few  immigrants  native  Britons  do  them  willingly.   In  many instances  where foreign workers are employed it is not because  native Britons will not work. Take  the case of the cockle-pickers who died in Morecombe  Bay  several years ago  it  was   widely  reported  in   the  media  that   the   Chinese  cockle  pickers   clashed  with    British  cockle  pickers   who resented  them  invading their  territory.  These   Chinese   were  not   filling  jobs  which  were  unfilled   by   the  British  but  competing with the British for the work.

More generally, one of the great lies of modern British politics is that employers are unable to recruit from the native population, especially for unskilled labour. Vast swathes of work have been effectively denied to the native population  by collusion between employers and those who supply labour.  This happens both within the indigenous ethnic minorities who only employ from their own ethnic group and within immigrant labour which commonly works through gangmasters who are immigrants themselves. This does not just work in areas such as fruit picking  and factory assembly work but in areas such as the NHS where we have the absurdity of doctors and nurses trained in Britain having to go abroad to find jobs because immigrants are employed here.

The other thing which prevents native Britons taking jobs in some parts of the country is the fact that the native Briton does not want to work for employers whose workforce is predominantly formed of  immigrants or native-born ethnic minorities. Like every other people,  native Britons do  not  wish to be  forced to work in their own land in  an  employment where they are in the minority, especially where they could find themselves in a situation where the workplace language is not English.

It is also important to understand  that the menial  jobs immigrants  take are worth far more to them than a native Briton.  If you earn as little as £200 a week net – many immigrants work cash in hand – and  live  in accommodation   either   supplied  by  an  employer   or   in   crowded accommodation for very little rent –   you will probably still be able to save a substantial amount, say,  £2,000 pa.

If  you  come from China where wages  even in the  big  cities are  50 pence an hour, you would earn £1,,000 pa for a 40 hour week.  Working at a  menial job in Britain allows you to save double the average  Chinese big  city annual wage in a year. That money remitted to China takes  on the  local purchasing power.  The multiplier for Eastern  Europeans  is less,  but even there £2,000 saved in a year would be a good professional salary in places such as Poland. Give native Britons the chance to save the  equivalent  of a British professional’s salary in a year  doing  a menial job and they will flock to the work and put up with basic living conditions.  Of course, no such employments are on offer to  Britons.

As for skilled workers,  there are few skills which cannot either be taught in a relatively short time or purchased from people working abroad.  There are far  fewer absolutely indispensible skills. In addition, many skilled Britons might decide to  return  because   the ending of mass  immigration would  signal that there was once again  a clear distinction between the  rights  of British citizens and the rights of foreigner. This would alter radically the  moral climate in Britain which could have a profound effect on the  way in which British émigrés view their homeland.

The international effect

There would almost certainly be a great uproar if Britain ended mass immigration. But  the roar would come from a paper tiger because those most affected would come from the Third World with which we have little trade and where Britain’s national interest is rarely if ever at risk.

As  a permanent member of the security council of the UN  Britain can veto any UN sanctions or even attempts to pass motions to censure her.  Britain is also an important member of institutions such as the IMF and  World Bank and could cause a good deal of trouble for the nations most likely to need the aid of  such organisations.

Then there is the inconvenient  fact  for critics  that no government in the world is officially for uncontrolled immigration.   Even more embarrassing, most of the members of the UN have immigration regimes incomparably harsher than Britain has at present.  A phrase including glass houses and stones comes to mind.

As for international  trade there is no reason to imagine that Britain would suffer. The vast majority of our trade is with the developed world.   It is in the self-interest of  our trading partners to prevent action against Britain because Britain is not only an important importer  but an important exporter.  To take just one example, and a very potent one, Britain’s arms industry is one of the largest  in the world.  The willingness to sell arms is a strong bargaining card with every country on the planet.  Britain is also tied into the economies of the developed world  through joint projects such as Airbus and the supply of parts to industries such as car-making (a great deal is supplied to German makes believe it or not).    The developed world, including the EU, would simply cut off their noses to spite their faces if they took action against Britain.  There are also the rules of the WTO agreements which would prevent such behaviour.

What of Britons who are living abroad? It is unlikely their host countries would act against them for the simple reason there are substantial communities of citizens from those host countries resident in Britain. It is also true that most Britons living abroad do so in the developed world, the countries of which are  much less likely to expel those legally resident en masse than a third world dictatorship.  Moreover, in most cases Britain would have more foreigners of a particular nationality living in Britain than any foreign country has of Britons living in their country. The balance of trade would be very much in Britain’s favour if reciprocal mass expulsions  resulted.

Do Britons want an end to mass immigration?

In these politically correct times where people have learnt that to speak against pc orthodoxy is a dangerous thing which can result in the loss of your job or criminal prosecution,  it is difficult to get an honest answer to a polling question such as “Do you think post-war immigration has been a good or bad thing?” or “Do you think immigration should be reduced?”, although even with such questions  a healthy minority give the non-pc answer.. To get at the truth one has to look at the responses to questions such as “Do you think Britain should be tougher on illegal immigrants?”. These type of questions invariably produces the sort of answer which would have brought a smile to a Soviet apparatchik,  commonly being above 80%  for tougher action, which is pretty astounding when around 10% of the British population is comprised of immigrants.

It is also noteworthy that concern about immigration has been at the top of issues concerning the British for years; this despite the fact that every mainstream British political party has  with the willing collusion of the British media, done  everything they can to suppress public debate about the issue.   

Anyone who believes that the British people welcomed the post-war immigration and want more of it is self-deluding to the point of imbecility.

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Comments

  • efgd  On January 30, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    I wish it was easy to agree that those pesky immigrants are taking our jobs. The answer is that in most cases there are no applicable full time jobs available and that in many cases non British nationals are willing to work for the minimum wage, and sadly less, therefore I disagree with your assumption that if there was no competition British nationals would take up the work – they have not.

    If we had no immigration the jobs would still not be taken, as British nationals seem unable to take the step of a low paid non-status work, employers would still find cheap labour from a different pool of workers, or out source more so. Seen it happen. The illusion that an inexperienced and untrained person can command high wages is park of the problem. I have personally had to counter these problems in issues of employing people. Shall I say that immigrants are less “fussy” and prepared to get out of bed for the minimum waged, part-time jobs, and of course like trade-unionised jobs try to protect their own, as your comment about Chinese workers – try putting mining, shipbuilding, car and steel workers into that scene (yes I know they do not exist in force now) and you’ll get the drift; all groups try to protect their own. To disperse with immigration, employers would still need unemployed people, especially low skilled, work ethic inexperienced, to take on those jobs. That is a fact of employment – the relationship between employee and employer.

    In an economy where low wage is the bargaining point – why do you think companies outsource to Asian and oriental countries – immigrants tend to take up those vacancies – ie apply for the jobs in the first place.

    It is not just EU immigrants or World immigrants that have done this, but the Irish and the Welsh also came “over” and took up the jobs that nationals deemed low paid and would not take up the employment.

    London Transport had to employ masses of immigrants to cover the vacancies that apparently there were not enough nationals to fill. Maybe so, but the wage bargaining was part of it.
    “The expansion of the British economy in the 1950s and 1960s created substantial shortages of labour, particularly in the relatively stagnant sectors of the economy, for example, textiles, metal manufacture and transport, WHERE LOW PAY, LONG HOURS, AND SHIFT WORK MADE THE JOBS UNATTRACTIVE TO BRITISH WORKERS. [caps mine] These industries were unable to compete with expanding sectors for workers in short supply. In a few cases employers recruited directly from the countries of migration. The Ministry of Health had a tradition of recruiting nurses and domestic workers from the West Indies, London Transport established an office in Barbados and textile employers advertised in the Indian press. However most migrants were not recruited directly but came unaided as voluntary migrants.” http://www.historytoday.com/zig-henry/new-commonwealth-migrants-1945-62

    I do not want nationals or immigrants paid low wages, but one way to employ people is for people to apply and be prepared for a hard dreary slog before, if they are so lucky, they get the status and the pay they deem they are worth. The culture of celebrities and Alan Sugar wannabes has deadened the reality of real life work. Having aspirations is excellent but we cannot all start in the directors chair or play for Manchester United without experience and training.

    Personally to prove to me immigrants take our jobs I would like to see British unemployed nationals applying for those jobs;”The Department for Work and Pensions said UK citizens were on the dole because of ‘issues around basic employability skills, incentives and motivation’.”
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1025782/East-European-immigrants-DONT-jobs–Britons-work-unmotivated-uneducated.html

    So going to your main point 🙂 This says it succinctly:

    “But Britain is an aging society: our population isn’t growing very fast. It’s worth asking whether there were, in fact, British workers available to do all those new jobs”. From http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/election_2010/parties_and_issues/8634469.stm

    If there are not the British workers to do the jobs, then employers will look else where – immigrants or no immigrants.

    So I agree that a curb in immigration is applicable – at least till we reach the equilibrium of immigration – emigration. But before that has an effect, the Brits have to apply for those low paid, problematic, easy come easy go jobs. If they start doing that in force we’ll see a change.

    Plenty of food for thought – thank you.

  • Lisa Kirkland  On February 11, 2011 at 10:08 am

    To all you people in denial OPEN your eyes for goodness sake and see the world as it is and not how you would like it to be…..It beggars belief that are still some morons out there who refuse to see and accept that mass immigration into Britain was along with cheap easy credit and cheap imports one of the tools that allowed Gordon Brown to undermine the economy of this country…..By allowing virtually unlimited immigration into Britain to keep the wages of the lowest paid down enabled or helped Gordon Brown to keep a lid on inflation and boast how well that the economy was doing but in reality the UK economy was steaming at full speed to financial meltdown which we are now experiencing at our cost…..This also meant that many of these immigrants applied for credit cards while they were resident in the UK this also helped to increase the amount of VAT that the government received but some of these immigrants ran up large debts and did a runner back to their own country…This and along with non-payment of council tax is now having to be met by the people in Britain through higher interest and council tax charges which in turn puts more pressure on people to pay for their mortgages and other bills in general…..That is just a few of the connections between this financial crisis and mass immigration have. And again the people if the land had been viable would have been far better off where they were rather than in the angry presence of the people they were attempting to move in on…..Just in case that is on your mind Mexico has a sever labor shortage and the wages for Mexico at this point while lower than American Wages are higher when living costs are considered.

  • efgd  On February 14, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    Apply for the jobs.

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