Labour’s right-wing immigration policy

The Lords have revealed how the poor suffer while rich businesses benefit, says Phillip Blond

BY Phillip Blond LAST UPDATED AT 01:00 ON Tue 1 Apr 2008

Thank goodness for the House of Lords. No wonder the government wants to abolish it - they keep exposing the right-wing delusions of New Labour.

The government has sanctioned unprecedented levels of immigration to Britain. Between 1991 and 2001 some 5m foreign-born people were added to the population, an increase of well over eight per cent. One out of every three future households will be generated by immigration. And all this is to be welcomed, we are told, because migrants make a net contribution to GDP – some £6bn in 2006.

Well, the House of Lords has exposed this as sheer bunkum – a delusional fallacy based on the idea that immigrants just add to GDP and impose no cost on services. In fact, in strictly economic terms, the only ones who benefit are the migrants themselves who earn higher wages and the employers who can get away with hiring workers at minimum wage. Everybody else is a loser – especially the British underclass.

Immigration forces down their wages as unskilled British labour competes with better educated migrants for low-paid jobs. Hence businesses see no need to invest in training and education for the young or the unskilled. And it forces millions of Britons onto the welfare rolls, which the rest of us support through high taxation.

What few realise is that a vast reserve of migrant labour that can cross borders, bid down wages and maintain corporate profits is a right-wing idea.

The traditional left has been silent no doubt because of misplaced fears of being accused of racism and genuine idealism about political asylum. But genuine asylum-seekers, who we treat abominably, make up only about three per cent of overall immigration. Mass immigration is good for big business and bad for everyone else. · 

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