The past two weeks have seen an awful lot of information related to the Home Office and immigration, the likes of which should have been on every front page of every national newspaper.
On 4 December, we learned that Theresa May’s flagship scheme to deport foreign criminals has been an abject failure, and that this government has managed to exclude just two offenders from the United Kingdom. The target at the outset was 62. That is a success rate of a pathetic 3.2 per cent.
Then it was revealed that at least 223,600 illegal immigrants had “dropped off” the Home Office’s radar, and that “unopened boxes” and “misplaced files” showed that enough people to fill a city the size of Southampton are in this country, without permission, and all because of a failure of this Home Secretary to get a grip on what she inherited from the last establishment political party.
Yesterday, the European Court of Justice declared that Britain cannot stop people from non-EU countries from entering the UK via family connections, even if they don’t have a visa. Mr Cameron of course “disagreed” with the ruling, but as we well know by now – it doesn’t mean a thing. He’s been wagging his limp finger about the EU for a while now, but even Francois Hollande has managed to rebuke him this week over his baseless “renegotiation” plan. Quelle surprise.
By now, Independent readers should know that I’m a shy kind of bloke. Far be it from me to repeatedly say, “I told you so,” but the truth of the matter is that Ukip has been warning about all these sorts of things for years. And we’ve been beaten back, called bigots, racists, fruitcakes, swivel-eyed loons and more. And yet, all that we have warned about has come to pass.
Now it would be very easy to make a judgment there: “Ukip is anti-immigration” is a lazy and fundamentally incorrect quip that we hear quite a lot. But actually, Ukip’s policy proposals on migration would simply reduce net migration to Britain to the numbers we as a country experienced in the 1990s – the tens of thousands. We wouldn’t stop it. Ukipers understand that the British labour market has jobs that can and are filled by migrant workers, and that’s natural.
What we cannot comprehend is how people like Ed Miliband can talk about the NHS, infrastructure, the cost of living crisis, etc, and still back EU membership and the mass migration that comes with it. All of these things are impacted on in no small way by the tremendous population growth in this country from the past 10 years. It’s not a “They’re cominh over here taking our jobs” argument – which is how we and our supporters are often caricatured.
Instead, it’s that there are more people in the country. That means there are more people needing to use hospitals and roads - more houses that are needed, and more people competing for jobs, which as any economist will tell you, drives down prices, which are in this case, wages.
Britain can benefit from immigration, but only when it is controlled. Currently, we have no such thing. That’s why I’m constantly referring to the Australian-style, points-based system which would cater to Britain’s needs. It’s also why I’m delighted that Ukip has a costed proposal to scrap tuition fees for students studying Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths and Medical degrees so as to serve our labour force better.
But for now we have to be very clear about something. Somewhere in the ideological game that the Tories and Labour have played with the British electoral system, they have both managed to drop the ball.
When I met Steph and Dom....
You might have seen me on the television earlier this week. In fact I’m pretty sure you’re surprised if you don’t see me on the television nowadays! But I’m talking specifically about Gogglebox, here.
Yes, I met Steph and Dom – “the posh couple” - earlier this year, and the entertaining (so I’m told!) footage was aired earlier this week. I must say I feel like the feedback has been rather good.
But don’t worry, I’m not going to give up my day job to start appearing on reality TV shows. In fact, we’ve managed to achieve quite the opposite!
Andrew Michael, from one of the show’s families, has stepped down from his involvement in Gogglebox to aim for a different kind of day job, on the Ukip ticket. Mr Michael is known for his straight-talking approach, and I’m delighted he’s joined the People’s Army in order to fight for the British public at the next General Election.
I just wonder what Mr Michael will say when he’s sitting near George Galloway MP in the House of Commons: “A cat’s a sexy animal? Where did you get that from? I’ve never heard that expression and it sounds a bit odd”.
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