Pandering to Racism 932

Here in Ghana people are stunned by the announcement that a bond of £3,000 will have to be submitted by visa applicants to the UK, redeemable on return.

It is unpleasant for a nation to be singled out as comprised of particularly untrustworthy individuals against whom special measures are needed.  Theresa May appears quite deliberately to be singling out countries whose citizens are normally black or brown – India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Ghana and Nigeria.  They are all citizens with extremely close ties to the UK.  For example, all of those countries supplied large numbers of men to British armed forces in two World Wars; with little resulting gratitude.

The true level of Britain’s regard for the Commonwealth is disclosed in all its arrogance; citizenship of the Commonwealth countries with the longest link to the UK will become a positive disadvantage in visa application.  Israeli settlers living in Occupied Palestine on the West Bank, incidentally, will still be allowed to enter the UK without any visa at all, despite membership of neither Commonwealth nor EU.  Paradoxical, isn’t it?

The measure shows the arrogant British disdain for these countries – of which India pre-eminently but also Ghana are fast growing and important trading partners.  Undoubtedly Ghana will retaliate with measures which hurt British businesses; many of my good friends are senior Ghanaian politicians, and they are all furious.  The rhetoric the British employ about transformation from colonial status to a modern partnership of equals is exposed for the tissue of lies it has always been.  This is a straightforward racist measure, aimed at securing the racist vote to the Tories.

Not does it make any sense.  If you are intending to enter the UK under false pretences, and have the intent illegally to settle and start a new life there, then £3,000 is scarcely a deterrent given the substantial economic gains you intend to make over the long period you intend to stay.  It will rather seem a good investment; people will find the money.  The people it will deter are those who never intended to overstay.  The extra cash upfront,  to the businessman for a business trip, for the student coming to study, for the tourist will drive them to go elsewhere, to the UK’s net loss.

More cruelly it will deter decent middle class people from coming to see grandchildren in the holidays, from going to the niece’s wedding,  from going to graduation.  Those things will become the prerogative of the wealthy, those with plenty of cash to spare.

This does nothing to deter illegal immigration.  It merely demonstrates populist racism, demonstrates contempt for some of the UK’s best-disposed friends, and demonstrates that the government thinks the right to travel is only for the rich.  It is contemptible.

932 thoughts on “Pandering to Racism

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  • Jemand - Drone Target

    I’d like to see the statistics on over-stayers and the immigration budget on investigations into those people before I pass judgement. It is an interesting idea that those who post a £3000 bond should be dissuaded from overstaying if that was their intention. They’re going to stay anyway. And if they need to borrow the money to get into the UK, it might be a new racket waiting to start up with associated criminal activities. I don’t believe it is racist, but certainly questionable in its expected effectiveness in bringing overstaying under control. Thin end of the edge?

  • tristan

    Typical xenophobic racist crap which all parties seem to be engaging in, in an attempt to appeal to the lowest common denominator.

    Unfortunately, seeing this sort of bile expressed so often in the media and amongst politicians just fuels racism.

    We need to stand up to racism not pander to it.

  • Jives

    Its a tilt at UKIP voters.

    Which will make more sense after Farage gets smeared at a time of the spooks choosing.

    And where will those distraught UKIP voters scurry to then?

  • Passerby

    Israeli settlers living in Occupied Palestine on the West Bank, incidentally, will still be allowed to enter the UK without any visa at all, despite membership of neither Commonwealth nor EU.

    There are no board of deputies tirelessly working on behalf of the Black citizenry of various origins in UK.

    The current racist policies are resultant of the calculations of the powers be, to dissipate the simmering anger and increasing resentment of the population in the face of iniquitous and criminal wealth distribution and even denied the opportunity to work, to earn a living. This coupled with taxation policies that favour the rich, and rob the poor to let the rich to keep even more of their ill gotten gains.

    The scapegoating of the Muslims, and immigrants is sure a fire way of directing the anger of the population away from the culprits whom have caused their untold misery, and onto a minority that have no political clout, or any kind of a board of deputies to influence the events in the way of selection of the would be carpetbaggers and their cohorts into the seats of power or placements on or near the public trough.

    This remittance of money along with increased costs of obtaining a visa is a measure to help to further dehumanize the “foreigners/immigrants/Muslims/Coloureds/Blacks”. This measure is a kind of a fine for being a foreigner and daring to arrive at any of the ports of Engerland.

  • Cryptonym

    It is similar to the not wholly nonsensical view that capitalism has endured through its demonstrably inherent and repeated catastrophic failure because it works synergistically with the worst but occasionally prevailing human traits of selfishness, greed and delusional conscience-less individualism. It is unquestionable that the Tories are racist to the core, but rarely do they dare say so; someone, as it’s likely not Cameron, is driving this lurch to the unspeakable right. I finger IDS as the head of the extremist faction presently in the driving seat of the Tory juggernaut, for his driven visceral demonisation, euthanising and zealous persecution of the sick and the disabled is an unmistakeable fascist trait identifiable as the signature of that and similar supremacist ideologies, even when not fully-formed. Their misreading of England is chillingly inept, based incestuously on a small sample comprising it seems, of a certain Sun Journos blog followers, and informed by their inane xenophobic ‘other’ bashing. It is representative democracy in reverse, the politicians attempting to transfer and ascribe their narrow, privileged, think the unthinkable, behind closed doors repulsive ideas to the population at large, again thinking of hitching an an easy ride along with an unspoken repressed trait of intrinsic human nature, as with capitalism’s inviolable preferment, a grossly simplistic pseudo-scientific self-serving mis-unserstanding of the human psyche.

    Tories (and the rest of the parties) to England: “I, and my friends, our sort, have never had it so good, so stfu you whingeing cnuts, else we’ll taser you, or worse!” Translating this into ‘foreign’ it could be written as: La vita è bella!

  • John Goss

    Great post. Your last sentence sums it up. “It is contemptible.”

    Add to that that Theresa May has an anti-Islam aspect to her racism and you have a fully-rounded racist against UK citizens too. I’ve raised a FOI request upon the Home Office regarding Abu Qatada in which I have tried to get figures of those arrested under anti-terrorism acts. It contains the following questions:

    “4) Does the Home Office operate a system of racism (religionism if
    you like) against Islam?

    5) Can you tell me please how many people have been held in custody
    under the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 and then the
    Protection of Terrorism Act 2005?

    6) How many of those held under the aforementioned acts were

    7) How many of those held under the aforementioned acts were

    Somebody may wish to raise a similar FOI on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on racist immigration measures. I feel I have been fighting racism for much of my life but only in the last twenty years has the British government in power itself been blatantly pro-racist. I believe it all boils down to these Acts which have taken away the basic tenet of English law habeas corpus.

  • Komodo

    As we can be sure that many of those who pay the bond will stay, it’s a nice little – stress little – earner for a Chancellor who has long been devoid of ideas. Utterly pointless move, otherwise. Racist? In a sense, anyway. Poles, Ports and Baltics can stay as long as they like. We can be sure that the sharks who currently extort money from migrants to get them into the country, legally or otherwise, will be rubbing their fins at this one. And that the effectiveness of our legitimate border controls will not be increased one whit.

    I (notoriously) hold that there IS a problem. But this doesn’t address it.

  • bruce hosie

    Disgusting that my in laws in tema will find it impossible to come visit the grandkids now. Vote YES in 2014 and break free from colonial rule.

  • Flaming June

    After doing a lot of clicking round St Theresa’s annoying website, I found out the cost of the fees for the bit of paper to enter the UK for a visit.


    Consulate rate of exchange:
    GBP1.00 = GHS3.20

    General visitors Visa application fee

    Short-term (up to 6 months, single or multiple entry)
    General visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 2 years)
    General visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 5 years)
    General visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 10 years)
    General visitor

    Business visitors Visa application fee
    Short-term (up to 6 months, single or multiple entry)
    Business visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 2 years)
    Business visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 5 years)
    Business visitor
    Longer-term (valid for up to 10 years)
    Business visitor
    Academic visitor (up to 12 months)
    Business visitor
    Clinical attachment, dental observation or PLAB test
    Business visitor
    Diplomatic courier

    etc etc Entertainer, Family, Marriage, Medical Treatment English

  • Abe Rene

    I regret to say that I agree – it does sound like an idiotic measure. I’m disappointed that Theresa May couldn’t see that the bond wouldn’t deter the people it was designed to keep out.

  • pilip t

    Lets get this straight
    The current ‘racist’ state(ment) of the brit est is …?!,”@

  • David

    Its a stupid idea that will only stop genuine visitors coming to this country, as previously mentioned it wont stop any illegal entry.
    I believe that it is a measure to prevent health tourism, about which we seem to hear so much, but if we as a nation know the level of health tourism then we as a nation must also know when some one enters the NHS system that isnt entitled to do so, IF that is the intended purpose of this stupid idea then why not simply charge the relevant person when or if they use the NHS ?
    Then again, if someone turns up at a hospital in the UK who needs medical assistance are we going to turn them away because they cant afford it ? In a lot of places in the world as a visitor you will get the bill, wether that is morally or ethically right is a different arguement.

    I remain unconvinced that this measure will do anything to resolve the alleged “problem” and is simply the Con/Dems playing to the nationalist instinct in order to win votes.

    Our border control is a mess, those in power should sort that first, but of course that would require some intelligent thinking and some intelligent discussion, none of which we can get out of the current crop of politicians.

  • Anon

    O/T Sorry – Michael Hastings crash – full interview with witness

    – Rough summary of witness account: Car apparently travelling as fast as it could possibly go; witness instantly assumed driver trying to kill himself; sparks/flames coming from rear near fuel tank as bounced off potholes/undulations on road at very high speed; no attempt to stop; hit some bigger dips in road; left the road; smashed into tree already partially on-fire;instantly exploded.

    Wikileaks twitter apparently confirmed that Hastings contacted Wikileaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson just a few hours before this crash.

  • Fred

    “Disgusting that my in laws in tema will find it impossible to come visit the grandkids now. Vote YES in 2014 and break free from colonial rule.”

    Show Westminster that the people are against Nationalist policies?

  • Techno

    Many of the immigration paradoxes are rooted in our membership of the European Union. We can’t control immigration properly until we leave it as we must accept anybody who enters from another EU state.

    Against this background our government must always be seen to be doing “something” so they pick on the easiest targets outside the EU.

    Craig is a supporter of the EU, if I recall correctly.

  • Villager

    I have it reliably that the sock-puppet Kibo Noh has now turned up as ‘David’. Expect a strong rebuttal. But, Jon, perhaps you can double-check this and confirm? This time more promptly and clearly?
    Has anybody considered that a lot of border-line (pun intended, if we are allowed to laugh here) applicants get visas refused and through this mechanism they may be able to prove their bonafide intentions?

    Just asking. This is not my holistic view for which i don’t have time atm.
    However, i would like to ask Mary did she have to put up a foot-long menu (again, pun intended) of visa fees. Couldn’t the point be made illustratively or by some other succinct manner, easier to digest?

  • Villager

    Jon, rude of me not to use the magic word. So, please and thank you for doing a difficult job, generally.

  • Jemand - Comments Deleted

    In a world teeming with hundreds of millions (billions?) of poor people who seek a better life, you Britons have to make a decision to either let them in (in the millions) or not let them in (in the millions). Whether for migration or tourism, I do not care. If you won’t let them in, in such large numbers, then you have to determine a process by which you discriminate against those who are denied entry. How should that process work? And for whose benefit should entry to your country serve?

    If you have no problem with poorly educated, non-English speaking people who have learned to survive the hard way, migrating or visiting in their millions to your little island country, then open the doors and let them come, for they surely will – in their millions.

  • Flaming June

    No sorry Villager the link would not extend to carry the details. I said the website was tricky. Can’t imagine people in other countries not speaking English dealing with it. What a petty bit of point scoring btw. What is your problem?

  • Windy Miller

    It is truly appalling that Ghanaians (and others) are treated this way and I believe that this isn’t the first time where Ghanaians are concerned. Engineers with impeccable backgrounds have suffered in the past trying to come to the UK for major business deals between the UK – Ghana.What has Ghana done to the world except be perfect neighbours. What I find even more saddening is that when every I applied for Ghanaian Visa’s they were fast, polite and fairly priced, in fact 2 year multi-entry visa’s are the norm, and if they have expired we can even get a visa on Entry, such is the trust given by Ghana.

    I have read many things on these threads but this actually does make me feel embarrassed.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    @ Flaming June :

    I think Villager’s problem with your longish list of visa fees was the same problem as I had.

    It was that I did not quite understand – although I did try hard – the point you were trying to make by posting that longish list. For example, do you think they are too high (per se, or in comparison with what other countries – including some African ones- charge) and if so, what might be wrong in charginhg such high fees. Or then you might be thinking tht they are too low. Or perhaps you’re making some kind of unspoken link between those fees and the £3000?

    Would you please post again and enlighten us? In the interests of pursuing a civilised and enlightening dialogue and discussion of course, as requested by Jon.

    Thank you.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    Before reading further in this potentially very interesting thread and prhaps commenting further, could I ask – just to get basic positions clear – if there is anyone present who believes that there should be no immigration controls into the UK and/or that there is no problem of so-called over-staying?

    Thank you.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    It will damage (British) business and the arts. They – those from those countries who have difficulty getting visas – just go elsewhere. And it will make visiting for social/family events much more difficult. It’s already difficult; this will make it worse. It’ll also cause much resentment. Not good. Unwise. What’s new, though?

    We all know there are rackets. I don’t think this measure will stop those at all. It’ll just stop the honest people.

  • geoffrey

    I can see it from several sides.A Russian friend who has moved here to educate her daughter at a private school has been unable to renew her visa here.She was paying £3750 a amonth rent,school fees of about £5000 a term,plus living costs perhaps a total of £100k p.a.The money she brought in would have kept a few people in work.
    I also have a Portuguese friend whose English ex boyfriend brought her and her child to the UK so that the child could go to a free school and learn English.She has now split with the boyfriend and he has somehow arranged for her to have a flat and £850 housing benefit a month (plus of course Child benefit.She therefore costs the state approximately £25000 p.a.Assuming that the school costs are £5000 per term.
    This does’nt make sense does it?

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