Immigration and Demography


by Shariq
26th October, 2009 at 11:30 pm    

The press has made a lot about the UK’s population increasing by 4.3 million people by 2018. Naturally people are concerned about the impact that this will have on the country’s basic social and economic infrastructure, and begin to question the scale of immigration.

Of course there is a different side to this debate – namely the fact that the UK’s population is aging and will potentially prove to be a huge burden to the economy. With higher life expectancy, the ratio of workers to dependents is going to to be much lower. The recession has shown the precarious nature of the government’s finances, and an aging population will have a further impact on this through pension problems and higher spending on health and care for the elderly. Gradually increasing the retirement age is going to be one part of the solution, but as far as I know this won’t be enough. The thing with immigration is that you are predominantly importing people of a working age, who will therefore be able to contribute rather than take away from the economy.

Project Population Change

Now, I understand that you can’t keep on adding people to a country ad infinitum – but from I what I can tell, if Britain’s population doesn’t increase then there will be major problems – different to the ones brought on by more immigration, but possibly more significant.

So my question is how can we equip both our economic and social infrastructure to deal with a rising population? I’ve just come from Mumbai, which is the perfect example of people learning to cope in very cramped conditions. However, its also an example of a city where the infrastructure is barely keeping up with the influx of people looking for work.

The social infrastructure argument is probably more relevant to this site. Naturally, I think that a lot of concerns about immigration are overblown and driven by an unfortunate xenophobia. However, its still important to think about issues such as how to incorporate migrants into the wider culture and not just the economy, and to think of ways of preserving and improving social mobility. Ideas?


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  1. pickles

    New blog post: Immigration and Demography http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/6318


  2. law

    "Pickled Politics » Immigration and Demography" http://tinyurl.com/yfhsz4h #immigration




  1. MaidMarian — on 26th October, 2009 at 11:37 pm  

    Cue Reza..

    This is going to turn ugly…..

  2. Leon — on 26th October, 2009 at 11:44 pm  

    Any flame baiting, general abuse etc is going to get deleted.

  3. MatGB — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:04 am  

    I like those graphs–was researching something similar over the last few days, you’ve pretty much got the answer I was looking for.

    Effectively, there’s no real change in the number of people in the country of working age, the real population explosion is in the aged, and the increased numbers that are of working age will be needed to pay for (and indeed care for) the older population.

    So immigration is solving the demographic timebomb that was going to be the big social issue for my generation when I was at school.

    Good good.

  4. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:23 am  

    Is there any point even debating this?

    A guy draws a graph.

    Read “Reflections on the Revolution in Europe” if you want to understand the demographic time-bomb that’s coming.

    And however well-meaning Shariq might be drawing this little graph and writing this little piece, Christopher Caldwell has a lot more credibility.

  5. Sunny — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:11 am  

    Read “Reflections on the Revolution in Europe” if you want to understand the demographic time-bomb that’s coming.

    Wait, and I thought you were interested in discussing Islam as opposed to demonising Muslims? A demographic timebomb according to Caldwell? Well, given you claim you’re from the Middle East, then you’re part of the problem aren’t you?

    I have an idea – why not emigrate out of the West first, and then warn about the Muslim demographic timebomb, ok? Nazi fuckwit.

  6. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 8:28 am  

    Sunny

    “Nazi fuckwit.”

    Clearly you’ve spent your whole life seeing the world in terms of how it benefits or disadvantages you personally. Thrown into that mix is the usual envy and resentment so typical of the leftie mindset. And the arrogance of being challenged. After all, you’ve done all the thinking so ordinary people won’t have to.

    You’ve milked your ethnicity to get kudos and a little influence from a bunch of credulous leftie chums.

    And you’ve used the same ethnicity to silence debate for decades by saying “racist”.

    Then when the wind begins to change in leftie circles, you bend with it like the shallow political creature you are. And despite being the type who would have yelled “Nazi fuckwit” at people like me who criticized unrestrained multiculturalism 15 years ago, when your views become a liability you change them. And then pretend that’s what you believed all along.

    But the best bit is that you hate facts, truth and credibility of an argument.

    And that’s why Caldwell’s book really gets your goat.

    And because you don’t have anything to counter the arguments in books like “Reflections…” you become irritated and try to divert the debate with a personal insult or accusation of racism.

    You lefties love agreeing among yourselves. That doesn’t require any reflection or thought whatsoever.

    I actually believe that you are far too narcissistic and selfish to ever change your view in the way I and many former deluded lefties have, but reading a few books might make you a little more rational.

    Because at the moment it often feels that there is a hysterical 12 year old in the debate whenever you poke your nose in.

  7. cjcjc — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:04 am  

    A very sensible post.

    My first (naive) question, though, is who will look after all the carers when they age in turn?

    Of course I would rather be looked after by a skilled immigrant than a British chav…!!

  8. Shariq — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:04 am  

    Hey reza. Interesting you mention caldwell’s book as i interviewed him and did a review for pp. Was in a bit of a hurry when i put the post up, but if you do a search, you’ll find it. On my phone right now, otherwise would have put it up myself.

  9. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:32 am  

    Shariq

    I read your interview and review. It has merit.

    The book is essential reading for anyone who wishes to discuss demography and immigration, whatever side of the ideological argument they may be on.

    Caldwell is a highly respected journalist and academic and his book is almost universally recognised as an important contribution to the debate on the effects of mass immigration.

    Even the left’s own Guardian/Observer gave it a positive review:-

    “Caldwell cuts to shreds the conventional wisdom of the “immigrationist” ideology – the view that mass immigration is inevitable and in any case a necessary injection of youth into our ageing continent. He shows, contrary to the immigrationists, that the flows of recent decades are unprecedented. He also demolishes the economic and welfare- state arguments for mass immigration and points out that in most countries there was no desperate need for extra workers in the 1950s – in Britain’s case, Ireland still provided a reserve army of labour. One of the most startling figures in the book is that the number of foreign residents in Germany rose from 3 million to 7.5 million between 1971 and 2000 but the number of employed foreigners stayed the same at 2 million.

    Caldwell is at his best describing the confused cultural and intellectual condition of much of Europe at the time the first waves of immigrants were arriving. It was hard, he points out, to follow Europe’s rules and embrace its values when Europeans themselves were rewriting those rules and reassessing those values. After the brutal experiences of the first part of the 20th century – two world wars, the Holocaust and de-colonisation – European elites had embraced a liberal universalism that declared the moral equality of all people and implicitly questioned the legitimacy of most racial and gender hierarchies.Liberal universalism could, in theory, have been compatible with confident nation states and national identities, but in practice it seldom was. The idea of national traditions and solidarities came to be scorned by liberals in many European countries. ”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/may/17/christopher-caldwell-immigration-islam

    Yet the likes of Sunny will dismiss it out of hand without ever reading it. Truth or even reflection is of no relevance to an intellectually bankrupt ideologue like him.

    And he’ll go further. He’ll accuse people who share Caldwell’s analysis as “Nazi fuckwits”.

    To progress any debate on immigration one must understand and be armed with supporting evidence from both sides of the debate.

    Otherwise you have no alternative than to resort to the debating tactics of a ‘fuckwit’.

    i.e. resorting to personal attacks, baseless pronouncements, wilful denial and accusations of lies and conspiracy, and childish contradiction, again with no supporting evidence.

    It’s no wonder that the left, here and throughout Europe are experiencing a collapse in support and credibility.

  10. douglas clark — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:26 am  

    Shariq,

    The 2033 figures preumeably account for net immigration? I’d have thought that was the hardest – read speculative – element to account for as, largely speaking, immigration will depend on economic activity or the lack thereof.

  11. Rumbold — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:43 am  

    I would also like to see more of a focus on encouraging people over a certain age to continue to work part time (at least). The pension and healthcare system isn’t designed for the present scenario, which sees people living decades after retiring. What we need is a lot more flexible work for old people (a few hours at a library, or in a factory). It would keep them busy and keep the money trickling in.

  12. chairwoman — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:48 am  

    The only people of my age that I personally know who aren’t still working are those of us who are unfit.

    Both my parents worked into their seventies, and my grandfather into his eighties, but they all worked for themselves. In times of high unemployment it’s hard enough for the young to find work, let alone older people.

  13. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:48 am  

    Shariq

    “The thing with immigration is that you are predominantly importing people of a working age, who will therefore be able to contribute rather than take away from the economy.”

    But which immigrants? Because the reality shows that some immigrant groups are unlikely to have any economic benefit whatsoever on the country:-

    Table 5.1. Employment status of working-age population by country of birth, excluding full-time students, 2005/06 (ranked by employment rate)

    Rank: Country of birth: Employed: Unemployed: Inactive
    1 Australia 88% 3% 8%
    2 France 86% 3% 12%
    3= Canada 85% 2% 13%
    3= Poland 85% 4% 11%
    5= Zimbabwe 84% 4% 11%
    5= Philippines 84% 4% 12%
    5= South Africa 84% 4% 12%
    8 USA 81% 3% 16%
    9 Ghana 80% 8% 12%
    10 UK 78% 4% 18%
    11= Uganda 77% 6% 16%
    11= Kenya 77% 3% 20%
    13 Nigeria 76% 7% 17%
    14 Italy 75% 6% 19%
    15 Sri Lanka 73% 5% 22%
    16 Republic of Ireland 72% 3% 25%
    17 India 71% 4% 25%
    18 Portugal 70% 8% 22%
    19= China 69% 4% 27%
    19= Jamaica 69% 7% 24%
    21 Cyprus 68% 3% 29%
    22 Iran 51% 12% 36%
    23 Pakistan 45% 5% 50%
    24 Bangladesh 44% 8% 48%
    25 Turkey 41% 7% 52%
    26 Somalia 19% 10% 71%

    http://www.channel4.com/news/dispatches_pdfs/dispatches_immigrants.pdf

    And when some of those immigrants become ‘ethnic minorities’ the level at which they “contribute” economically to society is significantly reduced by high unemployment and subsequent welfare dependency:-

    “There is a significant gap of 14.2% between the employment rate of ethnic minorities and that of the general population. Annually, this costs some £1.3 billion in benefits and lost tax revenue, and some £7.3 billion to the UK economy in lost output. The employment gap has changed little in 20 years and is only 1.3% lower than in 1987.”

    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmselect/cmpubacc/472/472.pdf

    (Notice they don’t mention the welfare cost.)

    All immigration isn’t good. Some of it is harming us economically. But you’ll know that having read Caldwell’s group.

  14. Rumbold — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:53 am  

    Chairwoman:

    But a number of older people I know (in their seventies) don’t work. You have fallen into the ‘lump of labour’ fallacy. This assumes that there is a fixed amount of work available in a country:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lump_of_labour_fallacy

  15. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 12:18 pm  

    “It was hard, he points out, to follow Europe’s rules and embrace its values when Europeans themselves were rewriting those rules and reassessing those values” and “Europe are experiencing a collapse in support and credibility.”

    Its not just Europe. Its also the US. With Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, non evidence of WMD, collapse of the global financial powerhouses, the rise of China and India etc has meant that those who saw themselves on the side of the righteous and all powerful are now in a weakening position.

    It is this shift that has caused the discontent. Being on a less surer moral and economic footing has caused the rise of wanting to blame the ‘other’ because of fear and the portending loss of a power base.

    This leads to the propaganda of saying that immigrants are not contributing, are from s***hole countries, have an invidious culture and overly take advantage of education show how bigoted people can get if they try hard enough.

    The rise of China and India proves the point that positive aspects of their culture (eg strong work ethic) can create a superpower. Those who say that the indigenous are being hampered educationally by immigrants should exercise some logic and reality and look to India with its 40% illiteracy levels yet on the cusp of being a superpower.

    It is groups within the countries with the diminishing power base that are questioning immigration without looking to see if they can take advantages of the opportunities (eg funding & caring for the aged population) or even learn a few basic lessons in self improvement.

  16. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 12:39 pm  

    persephone

    “It is this shift that has caused the discontent. Being on a less surer moral and economic footing has caused the rise of wanting to blame the ‘other’ because of fear and the portending loss of a power base.”

    Really? I pasted some reliable figures with reputable sources in #14. Do facts and figures that reflect the reality, rather than the ideologically motivated perception of our situation have no relevance at all for you?

    I’ve said before that my mind is not closed. Yet however hard I try, I find little evidence to support your viewpoint beyond baseless pronouncements, ideologically motivated wishful thinking, denial and censorship.

    Where’s the evidence that mass immigration has and will continue to ‘enrich’ us economically rather than ‘culturally’?

    All I can find is this:

    “The National Institute Report
    6. In October 2006, the National Institute Economic Review No 198 contained a commentary on immigration and its effects. This examined the impact of immigration between 1998 and 2005. It concluded that immigrants who have arrived since 1998 have raised GDP by 3.1%. According to the Labour Force Survey figures in the report, of the 58.987m population, 2.249m have come to the UK in the 8 years since 1997. The crude addition to the population (excluding UK-born children) is therefore 3.8%. So the benefit is negative in terms of GDP per head [v].

    7.The report also claimed that in calendar 2004 and 2005, taken together, immigration contributed nearly 1% to the overall growth of 5.3% in this period. This claim was based on 815,000 migrants arriving in 2004 and 2005. They therefore added 1.4% to the population and 0.9% to earnings GDP. If earnings are taken as a proxy for overall GDP, as is the governments practice, the addition to GDP would be 1.3% so the impact on GDP per head would be slightly negative [vi].”

    That’s right. A negative economic impact per head!

    Someone, please prove me wrong.

    (Note to Sunny. “Nazi bigot” does not constitute evidence.)

  17. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 12:40 pm  

    “some immigrant groups are unlikely to have any economic benefit whatsoever on the country:

    How do you think targeted villifying of certain immigrants (Muslim/Islamic) helps? In reality it
    is part of causing the unemployment of certain groups for eg CV’s being filtered out because they have an ostensibly muslim name. I have spoken to Muslims who have tried changing/adjusting their name and saw that it made a difference in getting to interview stage.

  18. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 12:57 pm  

    persephone

    On the one hand you say that all immigration benefits our economy and when I point out with empirical evidence that it doesn’t you blame it on notions such as racism or islamophobia.

    Can’t you see the ideological muddle you’re in?

    I’m not vilifying anyone. I’m just demonstrating how it is.

  19. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 1:11 pm  

    @16 Reza do your immigration figures include asylum seekers who cannot legally work as, during the period you have selected, we did have a large influx of asylum seekers.

    As a comparator are there pre 1998 figures that show the impact of immigration on GDP. I am sure Jai provide a figure in relation to the post posing questions to the BNP stance of post 1950′s immigration

  20. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 1:28 pm  

    persephone

    The figures were for ‘immigrants’, not ‘asylum seekers’. (Read the report.) Clearly, if asylum seekers had been included then the figures would be more alarming.

    And pre 1998 was a different world. The uncontrolled mass immigration we’ve witnessed has taken place since government policy changes in 2000/1.

  21. Col Bloodnokk ex M15 — on 27th October, 2009 at 1:40 pm  

    Well we all know that immigration has been a wonderful thing (my pension depends on me saying it).

    I can remember a time though when Big Isuue sellers were home grown.

    We have a charming Roma woman here who turns up to work in Merc.

    Bloodnokk
    The Bunker
    Virginia Water

  22. Sunny — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:08 pm  

    Clearly you’ve spent your whole life seeing the world in terms of how it benefits or disadvantages you personally. Thrown into that mix is the usual envy and resentment so typical of the leftie mindset.

    lots of screaming and spluttering and frothing there Reza, but you’ve not answered the question.

    Given that you’re apparently (you claim this but I doubt it) part of the ‘demographic time bomb’ that you’re warning people about above – why don’t you leave the country?

  23. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:17 pm  

    “some immigrant groups are unlikely to have any economic benefit whatsoever on the country:

    How do you think targeted villifying of certain immigrants (Muslim/Islamic) helps? In reality it
    is part of causing the unemployment of certain groups for eg CV’s being filtered out because they have an ostensibly muslim name. I have known Muslims who have tried changing/adjusting their name and saw that it made a difference in getting to interview stage.

    From your reply @20 I see that you do not want to analyse the impact post 1950′s. Is that because you are not interested in analysing the positive?

    As to my making pronouncements, suggest you read The Economist. If you are open, as you say you are, it may get you out of your alarmist small island mentality. Unless that is a chosen stance.

  24. cjcjc — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:38 pm  

    Trouble is it *is* a small island, and the prosperous island of London even smaller..!

  25. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:53 pm  

    ^^ So what do you think we should do with the issue of the ageing population?

  26. cjcjc — on 27th October, 2009 at 2:57 pm  

    How many unemployed are there?

  27. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:00 pm  

    cjcj

    I like your thinking! I am all for getting them occupied, even if it is unpaid for

  28. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:08 pm  

    Persephone

    “From your reply @20 I see that you do not want to analyse the impact post 1950’s. Is that because you are not interested in analysing the positive?”

    Of course I accept that there have been positive effects from immigration in the past. I’ll even accept that some of the current immigration brings tangible benefits.

    But just because there’s been a net positive effect in the past does not mean that all immigration, in all amounts must be a good thing forever.

    Immigrationists talk of the mass immigration of Ugandan Asians. That was a one-off hit of 27,000 people. Today we have a net immigration of 237,000 a year!

    Persephone, you can’t draw on historical examples when the levels of immigration over the last 15 years have been unprecedented.

    It needs to be debated, urgently and honestly. We need to discuss and understand how this rate of demographic change will change our society. And we need to decide whether we think those changes will be a good or bad thing for our society.

    And finally we need to make the necessary political decisions to deal with that knowledge.

    I really think you ought to read Caldwell’s book.

  29. damon — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:10 pm  

    Is it possible for a country’s population to decline in a managed way, without there being a need for large scale immigration to prop up a ‘top heavy’ society.
    Too many old people; and replacement birth rates of below 1.5 or worse for some countries like Japan and Spain.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_and_territories_by_fertility_rate

    You could say that Japan had become overpopulated, and having 30 million people fewer could give everyone a little more living space.
    Some people might swap a more frugal and downscaled economy, instead of the idea that Japan had to open up to large scale immigration to maintain everyone’s high expectations for their retirement.

    Are they really going to build the extra infrastructure and housing in Britain?

  30. Sunny — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:24 pm  

    What about people from Iran? What’s your policy on that Reza?

  31. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 3:36 pm  

    Sunny

    “Given that you’re apparently (you claim this but I doubt it) part of the ‘demographic time bomb’ that you’re warning people about above – why don’t you leave the country?”

    I’m no such thing. I am a fully assimilated British citizen. And even if I was a devout Muslim, living in a parallel society, I don’t believe that as a British citizen I should leave.

    You question however gives away beautifully your state of mind. That nepotism that sadly exists among many members of the ‘ethnic minorities’.

    How can I, who claim to be Iranian born, not support an open-door immigration policy to allow my relatives and all my ancestral ‘brethren’ to come to these shores and partake of the fruits of British citizenship? I must be a “liar”. (You like that word, don’t you).

    Well the answer is this. The people of Iran are not ‘my people’. I left that country and made my home here. My people are the British people. The white, black and brown British people living on these islands. I care about their welfare.

    And uncontrolled mass immigration and unprecedented demographic change is hurting them.

    But you don’t care about that do you.

    Deep down in your psyche is an envy and resentment towards the ‘indigenous’ British people. I’ve seen it before. You care little for them.

    Your ‘people’ will always come first.

    And the North-European culture of competitive altruism is easy prey for clever nepotists such as you.

    I see you. You expose yourself.

  32. Sunny — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:01 pm  

    Well the answer is this. The people of Iran are not ‘my people’. I left that country and made my home here. My people are the British people. The white, black and brown British people living on these islands. I care about their welfare.

    either you haven’t read the book or you’re completely ignorant of what it’s implications are. You may be a ‘fully integrated’ British citizen but you’ve still emigrated from a Muslim majority country right? You’re still going to have brown-skinned children right?

    Do you think a study of demography cares about how integrated those people are? It only cares about the skin colour and/or heritage of those people. SInce you claim to be from Ianian heritage then you’re part of that demographic that you’re arguing against.

    Unless of course you’re a liar and a fraud.

    So once again – when are you going to leave this country to alleviate the ‘demographic time bomb’ that nazis like you talk about?

  33. Adnan — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:28 pm  
  34. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:43 pm  

    Sunny

    Clearly you have not read the book.

    “Do you think a study of demography cares about how integrated those people are?”

    The book is largely concerned with the rapid and large-scale demographic growth of discreet and non-assimilable groups. In particular Muslims, as they are constitute the bulk of unprecedented demographic change we are witnessing in Europe.

    -“It only cares about the skin colour and/or heritage of those people.”

    No it doesn’t. Not in this case. Caldwell is not a racist. He supports the ‘melting-pot’ assimilationist view.

    -“So once again – when are you going to leave this country to alleviate the ‘demographic time bomb’ that nazis like you talk about?”

    I don’t think that anyone should leave the country. But that doesn’t mean we should ignore the implications of massive demographic change. And if those implications warrant it, we must take the necessary political steps to slow demographic change.

    As a leftie, you’ll understand social engineering very well. Hell, I bet you could have taught the Nazis and the communists a thing or two.

    A start would be a moratorium on further immigration. Particularly third-world immigration of unskilled and poorly educated people that have little to offer our society. Then we must commence a rapid and efficient removal of all ILLEGAL immigrants in this country.

    Then we should stop handing out British Passport like sweeties.

    After that, the welfare and taxation systems should be adapted to encourage productive people (of all shades) to have more children and encourage the less productive people (of all shades) to have less.

    To come to think of it, simply take the left’s policies on social engineering and turn them on their heads.

    And finally, I don’t share your hatred and fear of the indigenous people of this country. I don’t believe that without draconian race and equality laws and a bullying race industry they would pick up pitchforks and drive my family and me out of this country.

  35. Col Bloodnokk ex M15 — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:43 pm  

    You’re still going to have brown-skinned children right?

    Sunny.

    Now steady on Sunny.

    If Reza comes from Iran he is probably of good Aryan stock and so is virtually as white as many Europeans.

    So his children will presumably also be white.

  36. Adnan — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:54 pm  

    “After that, the welfare and taxation systems should be adapted to encourage productive people (of all shades) to have more children and encourage the less productive people (of all shades) to have less.”

    Hmmh, why am I not surprised ?

  37. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 4:55 pm  

    Col etc.

    “If Reza comes from Iran he is probably of good Aryan stock and so is virtually as white as many Europeans.”

    That’s a ridiculous statement, but sadly one I’ve heard Iranians repeat.

    How on earth can a people surrounded by other peoples and subject to countless migrations and invasions over millennia consider themselves as a ‘race’? ‘Race’ is irrelevant. A shared national identity is not.

    Therefore there is such a thing as an ‘indigenous’ Iranian. But that can’t possibly describe a ‘race’.

  38. Dan Dare — on 27th October, 2009 at 6:41 pm  

    The proper question gets asked:

    “My first (naive) question, though, is who will look after all the carers when they age in turn?”

    Anyone who believes that immigration provides the answer to Britain’s aging ‘crisis’ should first read David Coleman’s seminal paper “The Myth of Replacement Immigration: Why everybody’s going to have to live in Korea”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1692968/pdf/12028794.pdf

    Immigration enthusiasts need to have a quick butcher’s at that, then get back us with where Prof. Coleman’s getting it wrong.

  39. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 7:16 pm  

    Reza

    Its a result to see you admit some benefits of immigration.

    I can see why you like Caldwell as he endorses your view. He is known as an alarmist who forecasts a dominant muslim mist looming over Europe & endorses Enoch Powell who used false letters to ‘prove’ his propaganda – are you familiar with that? Its the same scaremongering, prophetic messaging that Hitler used. All in all, not a commendable book recommendation Reza.

    “ you can’t draw on historical examples when the levels of immigration over the last 15 years have been unprecedented.”

    If you can’t draw on historical examples then what can you rely upon? Alarmist propaganda a la Caldwell it seems. The impact of mass immigration, as with any policy, is known over the longer term eg Irish immigration in the US. With immigration time is yet more relevant as a generation arrive with a mindset intact which can take time, the next generation, for further change and ‘assimilation’.

    “We need to discuss and understand how this rate of demographic change will change our society. “

    You mean like how learning about how a hard work ethic can improve one’s lot. And your family is part of that demographic change – what is it about your family set up that you want to understand more about? How is your family changing society?

  40. Reza — on 27th October, 2009 at 8:08 pm  

    Persephone

    It’s disappointing how with you guys it’s always the ‘same old’ conclusion.

    I believe that all immigration is not beneficial. I argue that it must be reduced and in particular, the types of immigrants being admitted must be controlled.

    I provide credible evidence to support my view.

    You disagree. And the only evidence you provide is your ideologically motivated perception.

    What am I to do?

    Is everyone here incapable of providing proper evidence to support their arguments?

    It’s clearly a ‘left-wing’ thing.

    As for my family, we’re integrated. Indeed we’re assimilated. Except for my children’s names and to some extent, their appearance, there is no question that they are as ‘British’ as an indigenous person. The vast majority of people opposing immigration would have no problem with them, anymore than they’d have a problem with my fully assimilated ethnic-Nigerian colleague at work. Only BNP-types would consider us as ‘less British’.

    Furthermore, I have a strong work ethic. I’ve always worked. I create jobs. I contribute far, far more to society than I take from it.

    That is not the case, on average, for some ethnic groups, as I demonstrated above.

    This is not about race or colour. If for example there was a large white ‘underclass’ community in Iceland, with a culture of welfarism, teenage single pregnancy, disproportionate crime and alcohol abuse, and for some reason they decided to immigrate in large numbers to Britain then I’d oppose that too. I would want the individuals in that community to be vetted to ensure that they shared this country’s values and any that were admitted were in a position to contribute rather than take.

    That’s all I’d like to see for all immigrants.

    Look at the figures for unemployment by ethnic origin again and tell me that doesn’t make sense.

  41. qidniz — on 27th October, 2009 at 9:18 pm  

    Look at the figures for unemployment by ethnic origin again and tell me that doesn’t make sense.

    Here in Leftistan, that is simply not allowed to make sense.

  42. persephone — on 27th October, 2009 at 9:36 pm  

    “It’s disappointing how with you guys it’s always the ’same old’ conclusion.”

    Same here. Why does it have to be a blanket demonisation of a race/religion to fit in with your worldview.

    As to assimilation, on Channel 4 tonight at 10pm there is a programme called Nip, Bleach & Tuck – The White Beauty Myth. Its about the emerging trend for people to de-racialise their faces & bodies using cosmetic surgery. Must be in search of the Griffin utopia of ‘looking’ indigenous enough.

  43. damon — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:25 pm  

    Dan Dare, I do know that David Coleman was professor of demography at Oxford University and is the co-founder of Migration Watch and is a member of something called the Galton Institute (formally the Eugenics Society). There was a campaign by students for him to be sacked because of his associations.

    Maybe he is a crank. I really don’t know.
    But I think there are many people on Pickled Politics who have no time at all for Migration Watch, so anything MW might say might not cut much ice.

    The idea that making up for an aging population through importing young workers is an interesting one. They come already schooled (or not) and ready to go straight to work.
    It sounds exploitative too somewhere along the line.
    Is there something of a pyramid scheme about how the numbers might stack up? They too will become old and need supporting.

    Are immigrant wives who are brought over by either British citizens, or by some of those young men who we have seen camping in Calais (and maybe ‘going home’ in a few years to look for wives) to be seen as adding to GDP or subtracting from it?

    According to a book I’m reading now about Afghanistan, the bride price for an Afghani bride in 2002 wass three to five thousand dollars. And all during the Taliban rule, Afghan exiles were working in Iran, with the goal of saving up enough money to get married.

    I am presuming that many of the young men who have made these perilous journies to Europe to gain asylum, or to get in how ever they could, will be looking to marry or bring other people over as soon as they can put down some roots in the UK.

    Australian ”points based system” or not, I would imagine that what I’ve just described will be some part of this overall population growth.

    But who knows? These new Britons might be a total shot in the arm for a better society. Out with the old, in with the new.

    The people on the website below are completely for open borders and the possibilities it could bring.
    http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php/site/issues/C137/

    Not really Reza’s cup of tea, but there you go.

  44. Amrit — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:35 pm  

    Adnan – did you notice how neatly

    As a leftie, you’ll understand social engineering very well. Hell, I bet you could have taught the Nazis and the communists a thing or two.

    was followed by what you flagged up

    After that, the welfare and taxation systems should be adapted to encourage productive people (of all shades) to have more children and encourage the less productive people (of all shades) to have less

    ?

    What beautiful irony. I often flinch when Sunny gets verbally aggressive, but in this case, ‘Nazi fuckwit’ is on the money.

  45. shariq — on 27th October, 2009 at 10:51 pm  

    Looking through the comments on the original caldwell thread, i think this review sums things up nicely. http://www.bookforum.com/inprint/016_02/3852

    Btw Reza, as I pointed out to Caldwell in my interview, if you look at the numbers of muslim populations in europe its not that large. This isn’t to say we can debate migration, but it does mean that some of the scaremongering is over the top.

    Also, its lazy to simply use stats about certain ethnic groups, without looking at their background. For instance, a lot of Muslim unemployed are in the old mill towns where economic opportunity is generally depressed. On the other hand middle class indian muslim families who are generally better off, and have family background of higher education have done very well.

  46. Amrit — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:03 pm  

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jul/20/immigrants-britain-ageing-population-growth

    In Britain, the most striking fact to emerge from this report is how relatively benign the pace of change will be. Indeed, the report suggests that our “total dependency ratio” – which adds together children and pensioners – will actually fall between now and 2020 to the lowest of any big European nation.

    It will accelerate rapidly after that, but will still remain markedly below our (ageing) continental cousins. It’s partly because in Britain, longevity lags behind that of France and Italy.

    But it’s also factors such as high net immigration and relatively high fertility. Britain’s population will continue to rise through to 2040, approaching 65 million, while Germany declines from 82 million to 77 million, and Italy from 58 million to 53 million.

    Britain also saves more, a puzzling statistic given our propensity to splurge on debt as well. We hold private pension balances equal to more than two-thirds of our GDP, second only to the US. We also have one of the least generous welfare systems for the elderly – with pensioners retiring on incomes under half the level they had in employment, compared with 89% in Italy.

    Yes, we will have many more elderly people, but the cost in terms of GDP will be less marked.

    I recommend the whole article.

  47. damon — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:51 pm  

    Forgive me for speaking off the top of my head, but reading that Guardian article that Amrit just posted does get me thinking about some arguements I heard from National Front type fascists years ago.
    They despised the wealthy middle classes and their consumption and big pension plans, and were quite into a bit of that ordinary ‘volk’ stuff that might embrace austerity and making do.

    Why need an international car industry? A British car industry could produce a couple of basic models that were enough for anyone.
    And what’s wrong with bicycles and some old style British motorcycles being enough for people’s needs?

    Let the population decline in Britain and have less crowded cities and countryside. No need for the ever more expensive high spped rail lines and new transport systems. Reopen the branch lines that Beeching closed and switch off The X Factor.

    And that fascist (or just conservative) idea of family and looking after the people you had obligations to, without the need to bring in ‘strangers’ to do hard and dirty work. It’s that ‘blood and soil’ idea again.

    Sounds like Climate Camp.

  48. Dan Dare — on 27th October, 2009 at 11:56 pm  

    Damon said “Dan Dare, I do know that David Coleman was professor of demography at Oxford University and is the co-founder of Migration Watch and is a member of something called the Galton Institute (formally the Eugenics Society). There was a campaign by students for him to be sacked because of his associations.

    Maybe he is a crank. I really don’t know.
    But I think there are many people on Pickled Politics who have no time at all for Migration Watch, so anything MW might say might not cut much ice.”

    It sems to have escaped notice that Coleman’s critical analysis of the UN report was published under the auspices of the Royal Society, not Migrationwatch UK. And, he is not a ‘co-founder’ of MWUK but rather a member of its advisory council and an independent consultant. The way to determine whether or not he is a crank is to make a serious effort to review his work rather than rely on half-baked ideological pronouncements.

    I take it as read that many people on PP don’t have much time for MWUK but very few of them will have ever taken the trouble to study their analyses, and fewer still have been able to point to any significant factual error. Sniffy dismissal and ad hominem innuendo appears to the limit of the intellectual challenge from the PP membership.

  49. Adnan — on 28th October, 2009 at 12:15 am  

    Amrit @ 44: LOL – had I noticed at the time of posting I would’ve made the point :)

    Reza has mentioned before that the welfare system favours “dysgenic” elements in society so maybe he genuinely thinks a little social engineering would redress the balance (although, what criteria would be used to judge “productivity”) ?

  50. persephone — on 28th October, 2009 at 2:10 am  

    “Sounds like Climate Camp.”

    And like Ikea

  51. persephone — on 28th October, 2009 at 2:13 am  

    Reza

    “Reza has mentioned before that the welfare system favours “dysgenic” elements in society”

    Did I miss a comment where you said this? After you refused to talk about genes because you found it uncomfortable and too ugly to in a recent post.

  52. Trofim — on 28th October, 2009 at 9:37 am  

    Dan Dare@48

    sniffy dismissal and ad hominem innuendo appears to the limit of the intellectual challenge from the PP membership.

    Absolutely. But I note shariq’s words: “Now, I understand that you can’t keep on adding people to a country ad infinitum – “. That, in my experience, is an extraordinarily moderate and reasoned statement by the standards of PP or LC, where the concept of limit is utterly taboo, and any opposition to immigration is denounced as pure racism.

    It is frightening that people are willing to pass over in silence the fragility of our food supply, the fact that we already have to import 40% of our food, for starters. There will be increasing competition for food over the next few decades and there is no guarantee that other countries with their own rising populations are going to be willing to sell their food to us rather than feed themselves. Not only are food imports dependent on oil, but so is our agriculture industry and as the price of oil goes up, so will the price of our food. If you listened to Radio 4′s On Your Farm series on food security a while back, you will know that there is already no way we can feed ourselves in an emergency, particularly as land needed for growing food is gradually obliterated by housing and infrastructure. Only recently has our Londoncentric government awoken to the reality of our situation. Their awakening came when they realised that London imports 80% of its food, and during the last petrol crisis it was within three days of having to bring in rationing. Food is simply taken for granted as something which just appears in the shops, being as most of our population are far removed from its production. Any prudent government has an obligation to stabilise our population at the very minimum, and if possible to encourage population reduction.

    http://peakfood.co.uk/

  53. Adnan — on 28th October, 2009 at 10:22 am  
  54. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 12:13 pm  

    Persephone & Adnan

    “Did I miss a comment where you said this? After you refused to talk about genes because you found it uncomfortable and too ugly to in a recent post.”

    What I wrote was:

    “And if that wasn’t enough, the dysgenic affects of welfarism, where the worst parents financially rewarded for having the most children have compounded the problem.” (Thank you Adnan for locating it.)

    I stand by that statement.

    Surely you can’t criticise opposition to a system that encourages people like Karen Mathews to have child after child?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kidnapping_of_Shannon_Matthews

    The welfare system is a good thing and I support it. It was not designed to foster a culture of ‘welfarism’, which is a very bad thing, both for society and the welfare dependants and their children.

  55. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 12:17 pm  

    Persephone

    Don’t confuse my comments here with the issues of genetics, race and human biodiversity, which I find unhelpful topics to discuss in anything but a purely academic environment and context.

    But if you are interested in exploring the subject then you could start by watching this on Channel 4:-

    “Race and Intelligence: Science’s Last Taboo”

    I haven’t seen it but I expect that it will be as balanced as it is possible to be on this subject.

    http://www.channel4.com/programmes/race-and-intelligence-sciences-last-taboo/episode-guide/series-1/episode-1

    This is a very complicated, divisive and emotionally charged area, where rational discussion becomes virtually impossible.

    However, I’ve been able to form a pragmatic opinion about this matter that rejects the view that some ‘racial’ groups are, on average, less intelligent, or less athletic than others, but accepts rather than denies the fact credible scientific research is able to show average differences between groups of people. And my views take the notion of ‘race’ out of the issue altogether.

    If you’re interested in what those views are, then ask me about them, after you’ve seen the Channel 4 programme.

  56. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 1:45 pm  

    Amrit

    I wrote:

    “After that, the welfare and taxation systems should be adapted to encourage productive people (of all shades) to have more children and encourage the less productive people (of all shades) to have less.”

    Your comment was:-

    “What beautiful irony. I often flinch when Sunny gets verbally aggressive, but in this case, ‘Nazi fuckwit’ is on the money.”

    If you disagree with my suggestion, try formulating an argument as to why it is wrong. Don’t feel obliged to put that argument here, just think about it.

    Because your opposition seems to be purely based upon Godwins Law:-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin%27s_law

    And that’s just plain stupid.

    The left have been socially engineering our society for decades. With some pretty damaging results.

    Why doesn’t that make them “Nazi fuckwits”?

  57. BenM — on 28th October, 2009 at 3:06 pm  

    @Reza

    “The National Institute Report
    6. In October 2006, the National Institute Economic Review No 198 contained a commentary on immigration and its effects. This examined the impact of immigration between 1998 and 2005. It concluded that immigrants who have arrived since 1998 have raised GDP by 3.1%. According to the Labour Force Survey figures in the report, of the 58.987m population, 2.249m have come to the UK in the 8 years since 1997. The crude addition to the population (excluding UK-born children) is therefore 3.8%. So the benefit is negative in terms of GDP per head [v].”

    I smell some duff statistics here.

    In 1998 GDP was £866Bn. In 2005 GDP was £1,234Bn. In 1998, the UK population was estimated to be 59.2m. In 2005 it was estimated to be at 60.3m.

    GDP per capita 1998 £14,630.

    GDP per Capita 2005 £20,464

    Even allowing for inflation at an average of around 2.5pc per annum in the period that’s a real GDP increase of £3K per head. Including immigrants.

    So GDP per capita has in fact RISEN (ND by as much as 20pc!) during a brief period of above-trend immigration – not fallen as claimed by this poster.

  58. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 3:23 pm  

    BenM

    I took the stats from here:-

    http://www.migrationwatchuk.org/briefingPaper/document/18

    I don’t know where you got yours from.

  59. BenM — on 28th October, 2009 at 3:31 pm  

    My Stats are all from the ONS.

    If in doubt deal with the raw data rather than skewed figures churned through an interested party like Migrationwatch.

  60. Kismet Hardy — on 28th October, 2009 at 3:50 pm  

    Bring back the gold cross. We need to keep our women breeding to stop them from straying. Soon we will be under attack and we need small men and women to fight against the creatures from the other realm

  61. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 3:52 pm  

    And of course you processed them. I find the intricacies of analysing statistics and raw economic data to be beyond my expertise. It’s so easy to make mistakes. I wouldn’t trust myself to do the job right.

    So forgive me if I don’t trust your analysis.

    Yes, Migration Watch is an interested party (who isn’t?), but they have a very good reputation for accuracy and their reports are subjected to scrutiny from opposing interested parties.

    Find me some reputable evidence that supports your viewpoint, from a reputable source. That can even be an opposing interested party. As long as it’s established and reputable.

    The fact that you had to have a go at crunching numbers yourself demonstrates that you couldn’t. Neither could I when I tried.

    Doesn’t that tell you something?

  62. BenM — on 28th October, 2009 at 4:19 pm  

    And of course you processed them.

    Using simple arithmetic available to any average-educated individual.

    So forgive me if I don’t trust your analysis.

    Well you wouldn’t would you? As a simple number crunching exercise has blown a rather large hole in one of the main economic planks of your skewed worldview.

    The fact that you had to have a go at crunching numbers yourself demonstrates that you couldn’t. Neither could I when I tried.

    Doesn’t that tell you something?

    Only that you’re a very lazy researcher and/or very susceptible to confirmation bias.

  63. qidniz — on 28th October, 2009 at 4:30 pm  

    I smell some duff statistics here.

    Yes, reading with your nose can lead to comprehension problems.

    So GDP per capita has in fact RISEN (ND by as much as 20pc!) during a brief period of above-trend immigration – not fallen as claimed by this poster.

    That was not the claim. Try reading the passage with your eyes.

  64. Reza — on 28th October, 2009 at 4:35 pm  

    BenM

    Look, I’m not going to waste much time with this. But know that I’m numerate enough to know that this stuff is not simple arithmetic.

    For example, did you compound for inflation? You didn’t. Do you even know what that means?

    That’s why I leave this stuff to credible and reputable sources to crunch. Forgive me if I’m reluctant to give weight to statistical economic analysis produced by anonymous posters on a leftie blogs.

    Ironically, I made a similar comment (#4) about Shariq’s graph at the beginning of this debate.

  65. BenM — on 28th October, 2009 at 4:48 pm  

    For example, did you compound for inflation? You didn’t.

    Yes I did. Go read my post again.

    Do you even know what that means?

    Obviously I do, seeing as I already allowed for it.

    Forgive me if I’m reluctant to give weight to statistical economic analysis produced by anonymous posters on a leftie blogs.

    Er, finding GDP per capita is only a matter of dividing gross GDP by the number of people in the population. Find the variables, do the maths. Do it for two periods and make a comparison. It wasn’t that difficult.

    @qidniz

    Aww, look! Reza has a little hanger-on! Bless.

  66. qidniz — on 28th October, 2009 at 4:58 pm  

    That’s why I leave this stuff to credible and reputable sources to crunch.

    It helps, however, to have some understanding of the crunching. Leftoids, being as bad with numbers as they are with facts, have no idea of the criticality of the various assumptions.

    BenM’s olfactory intellection is a case in point. He simply could not grasp the relation between two numbers — 3.1 and 3.8 — never mind comprehend where they came from or how.

  67. BenM — on 28th October, 2009 at 6:23 pm  

    @qidniz,

    This is interesting.

    From a submission to a “Parliamentary Inquiry on the Economic Impact of Immigration” on 30 Sep 2007 using the same National Institute figures:

    Overall, GDP increases as the increase in labour supply results in increased employment. By 2015 the level of GDP is approximately 0.9 per cent above baseline. Average output per capita is reduced in the short term, due to both the short term increase in the unemployment rate and the slow adjustment of the capital stock, but is higher in the longer term than it would have been in the absence of this increase in migration.

    My html knowledge is dire. If I could, I’d put that bit about immigration ADDING a net 0.9pc to overall GDP above baseline trend and the statement about migration driving a long term increases in GDP per capita in big bold type!

  68. damon — on 28th October, 2009 at 7:56 pm  

    Dan Dare @ 48 … I wasn’t suggesting that I think that Professor David Coleman was a crank.
    I think that that case has yet to be proved.
    From what I’ve read of him, he seems plausible – and as he’s a professor of demography at Oxford, and I’m just a van driver, I’m bound to give plenty of weight to his opinions, unless someone else can tell me why he’s wrong. (In his facts and figures, not on whether he thinks mass immigration can lead to a lack of societal cohesion).

    My suspicion is that the Oxford group called ”Student Action for Refugees” (STAR) are being overly censorious, and want to close down debate.

    This is an article by someone called Teresa Hayter in which she slams Prof Coleman.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/mar/16/watchingdavidcoleman1
    But after reading it, I think the first dozen comments from readers are better than the article itself.

    Google her name to find out more about her.
    She’s for open borders .. but so are these people, and they don’t agree with her.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php/site/article/2916/

  69. Dan Dare — on 28th October, 2009 at 9:25 pm  

    @Damon – yes of course I am familiar with Teresa Hayter, she is a well-known luminary of the Immigration Industry and a fully paid-up member of the Open Borders Brigade. As you note, even the right-on lefties at spiked online shy away from her.

    But you seem an open-minded sort of bloke for a PP regular. You might find this discussion about immigration to be of interest; I’d be interested to get your thoughts which you can post either here or there:

    http://majorityrights.com/index.php/weblog/comments/the_immigration_industry_tacks_into_the_wind/

    As for the economic benefits of immigration, I’m rather surprised that anyone would still be trying to resuscitate that knackered old nag. Even NuLabor have given up on it. The coup de grace was administered by a government minister in evidence to the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee in January 2008. According to Liam Byrne, over the ten years through 2006 migration had contributed an additional 1.5% to the GDP per capita of the ‘native’ population, or 0.15% per year, on average. This is the figure that led to the 58p or ‘Mars bar per week’ hilarity in the daily press.

  70. qidniz — on 28th October, 2009 at 10:00 pm  

    @qidniz, This is interesting.

    Not as interesting as your attempt to cover your earlier flub by changing the subject, nor as interesting as how you have camouflaged your new effort. By, for instance, omitting to provide a link.

    From a submission to a “Parliamentary Inquiry on the Economic Impact of Immigration” on 30 Sep 2007 using the same National Institute figures:

    I am disadvantaged by being on the wrong side of the pond and thus generally ignorant of the ins and outs of public affairs on the far side. Nevertheless, with a few minutes of Googling:

    1. I found this here.

    2. Whereupon, I found this here, which also has a link to the Govt response in #1 above.

    3. The list of witnesses in Appendix 2 of the Lords’ report wasn’t helpful, so a text search of your excerpt then led directly to this.

    And what do we find? That your excerpt (from the top of page 4) is about a “simulation exercise” with NiGEM, the NI’s econometric model, described on page 3. And what kind of simulation exercise, exactly? From page 3 (with relevant passages bolded for easy perusal):

    Here we discuss some of the issues raised in previous work by the National Institute of Economic and Social research in the context of a simulation exercise using the Institute’s global econometric model NiGEM . This example serves to illustrate the macroeconomic impacts of recent A8 immigration to the UK. We model this immigration as an unanticipated shift in the population and the population of working age commensurate to the figures in Table A. This updates previous Institute work by taking into account further increases in the A8 migrant population that have occurred since the summer of 2006. The potential impacts on GDP, inflation, unemployment, productivity and GDP per capita are illustrated in Table C.

    Now, tell us, BenM, since you are so good with numbers: Are the A8 countries the only source of immigrants? More generally, do you need numbers to tell the difference between apples and oranges?

    The world wonders.

  71. persephone — on 29th October, 2009 at 1:53 am  

    Reza @55

    Theres no confusion. Simply your contradiction.

    That programme did not cover anything new. But relating it to this post, our agility as humans to adapt to a changing environment has helped to increase IQ over the decades. So a changing demographic must be good.

    You obviously have not started to read The Economist. I’d try it as otherwise your insight is focused on learning from far right sources.

  72. Amrit — on 29th October, 2009 at 12:03 pm  

    The left have been socially engineering our society for decades. With some pretty damaging results.

    Provide evidence of left-wing politicians exerting direct control over who has children. Don’t try bringing in immigration – you always do, and that has no relevance to what I’m talking about.

    Because your opposition seems to be purely based upon Godwins Law:-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin%27s_law

    And that’s just plain stupid.

    Well, no, it’s not Godwin’s Law at all.Nice try at derailing, though. The Nazis directly controlled the breeding of those they considered ‘mentally sub-normal.’ You also suggested that certain people, who you think less deserving, should be prevented from breeding. Ergo, Sunny is entirely correct in calling you a Nazi fuckwit.

    Try going to the Holocaust exhibition at the Imperial War Museum, it might teach you something. Or, you could ask our resident rightie Rumbold for some suggestions on good history books, given that you whinge about ‘the left’ constantly, but seem hideously incapable of citing more balanced sources than MigrationWatch.

  73. BenM — on 29th October, 2009 at 6:35 pm  

    70. Hi qidniz.

    No flub, and none of what you link to supports your prejudices (for that is what they are) at all.

    The point made by the simple arithmetic in post 57 is corroborated by that submission to that committee I posted about in post 67.

    Simple stuff. Easily worked out if you’re not predisposed to certain incoherent, unsubstantiated negative views about immigration.

    Do they teach you maths over there?

  74. damon — on 30th October, 2009 at 10:42 am  

    Dan Dare, that was an interesting ‘rebuttal’ of Philippe Legrain’s ideas on that link.
    It would be good to see the left counter the argumnets put in it and try to get to the bottom of this issue.

    Unfortunately, that website looks very dodgy.
    Indeed, overtly anti-semitic.
    http://majorityrights.com/index.php/weblog/comments/jews_lie_about_madoff_swindle/

    Quite outrageous really. It’s a pity, as reading the article about Philippe Legrain, I was thinking that it was making some fair points, but reading a bit more widely on the website put me off thinking anything good of it.

  75. Reza — on 30th October, 2009 at 12:38 pm  

    Amrit

    Before having children, it is reasonable to expect that people are confident that they have the financial and practical means to care for them.

    However, accidents and misfortunes do happen and that’s why it’s appropriate to have a welfare ‘safety-net’ to cater for those situations.

    However, the reality is that the welfare system is no longer being used as a ‘safety-net’. It is being abused to fund ‘lifestyle’ choices. It is also being used by people who neither have the financial means, nor are ever likely to have the financial means, to nevertheless have very large families because they know that the tax-payer will fund their cultural or religious preference.

    In the meantime, we have miserly maternity and paternity benefits for working parents. There are no tax allowances for children. Women who delay childbirth by going to university and pursuing careers are not given any consideration for their sacrifice.

    For professional and highly skilled people and working people in general, the ‘productive’ part of our society, having a child is detrimental to ones standard of living in terms of money and housing and it affects one’s career, particularly for women.

    But for some parts of society, having kids has the opposite effect.

    But for a white single mum with a litter of kids by different fathers, a new child means more money, and possibly a bigger council house. The same goes for a Somali or Bangladeshi family with eight kids and either no earned income or a single, very low income.

    Of course anyone has the right to have as many children they wish to have.

    However, no one has the right to expect the ‘productive’ section of society to fund them, and fund them and keep funding them.

    Deliberately having more children than you can afford, because you know that the taxpayer will pick up the tab, is nothing short of parasitism.

    A simple ‘balancing’ of the tax and welfare system would encourage the more productive people to have more children and the unproductive people to have less.

    Because, to answer your question, the imbalanced system we have at the moment is perfect “evidence of left-wing politicians exerting direct control over who has children.”

  76. Adnan — on 30th October, 2009 at 2:44 pm  

    Reza,

    The fact that some people whom you term as unproductive have large families is not evidence of politicians (of any stripe) exerting control over who has children, rather it’s an unintended consequence of our welfare system. On the other hand, what you’re proposing is society exerting such control (but, hey, you’re not the first right winger with a totalitarian streak when it comes to sections of society you don’t like ;) ).

    How do you propose to rebalance the system and how would you deem somebody as productive or otherwise for the purposes of this rebalancing ?

    Your argument can be tweaked to say having children is a lifestyle choice and there should not be allowances made for flexible working, maternity pay, parental leave.

  77. Refresh — on 30th October, 2009 at 3:04 pm  

    ‘Deliberately having more children than you can afford, because you know that the taxpayer will pick up the tab, is nothing short of parasitism.’

    Is there a seriously held view that says people go out of their way to have children so they can get higher rates of social security?

    I can understand people’s biological need to have children – that after all, Reza, is the reason you are here.

    Children as a lifestyle choice? Or children if you have the wealth?

    Are you THE Reza Palavi heir to the Peacock Throne?

  78. Dan Dare — on 30th October, 2009 at 6:00 pm  

    @Damon

    Wrt Majorityrights, yes it is (unapologetically) skewed towards promoting the interests of the majority population group within the Eurosphere (aka white people), in much in the same way that places like this do for ethnic minorities.

    As regards the JQ, there are a range of opinions expressed there on the matter, the American contingent tending to take a harder and more doctrinaire line than the British or European.

    I shouldn’t let that deter you though if you wish to turn up and provide some alternative commentary. We like a bit of aggro!

  79. Don — on 30th October, 2009 at 7:50 pm  

    skewed towards promoting the interests of the majority population group within the Eurosphere

    Or, as Damon noted, overtly anti-semitic. And white supremacist. And 9/11 truthers. Fairly putrid site.

  80. damon — on 30th October, 2009 at 11:21 pm  

    I fully endorse what Don said above.
    It’s an appalling website.
    Particularly ‘the forums’ which I hadn’t seen before posting last time.

  81. Amrit — on 31st October, 2009 at 1:47 am  

    Reza… I wanted proof, not an explanation. Kindly provide!

    LMAO @ Refresh. Reza Pahlavi is certainly not our Reza (don’t ask me how I know this, but I do).

  82. Refresh — on 31st October, 2009 at 3:00 am  

    Amrit, it could be. Seems desperate enough.

  83. Reza — on 2nd November, 2009 at 10:17 am  

    Adnan

    “The fact that some people whom you term as unproductive have large families is not evidence of politicians (of any stripe) exerting control over who has children, rather it’s an unintended consequence of our welfare system.”

    Unintended or otherwise, it still influences who has children and how many children they have.

    It still contributes to the situation that the least economically productive groups (for example , ethnic-Pakistani, ethnic-Bangladeshi, ethnic-Somali and white-underclass) have the highest birthrates.

    “How do you propose to rebalance the system and how would you deem somebody as productive or otherwise for the purposes of this rebalancing?”

    I thought that I had made it clear. By balancing the welfare and tax systems.

    Give tax rebates to working people who have children. Make private school fees and private healthcare tax-deductable, as it is in many countries. That would certainly encourage the more economically productive people to have more children.

    At the same time, cut benefits to economically unproductive people who have more than, say, two children.

    Everyone has the right to have as many children as they want. And I have no objection to my considerable tax contribution being used to fund a Pakistani minicab driver or a Bangladeshi restaurant worker with a stay-at-home wife to have two, even three kids. I do however get very pissed off knowing that my taxes are funding many of these families having six or eight kids.

    Similarly, if a white, unemployed single woman finds herself pregnant, I think that it is reasonable for a compassionate society to give her a house and benefits to raise the kid. As long as she is deemed to be capable of bringing it up.

    But one is enough. If that woman chooses to have more kids, this should not lead to an expectation of more cash and better housing.

    These measures would deter economically unproductive people from having too many children.

    As I said before, deliberately having kids when you know you haven’t the financial means to care for them and expecting the tax-payer to fund you is simply parasitism.

    PS

    I am not Reza Pahlavi, nor his late father!

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