Those Romanians and Bulgarians

by craig on January 19, 2014 11:55 am in Uncategorized

One achievement of which I am very proud was my part in ensuring that the UK did not place restrictions on the right to free movement of the first EU Eastern European accession wave.  The arrival of so many Poles, Czechs, Hungarians, Latvians etc in the UK has been a brilliant social and cultural development and provided some support for an economy wrecked by the reckless greed of bankers.

There can be no more stark illustration of the tiny political space occupied by the major political parties and portrayed by the mainstream media as the only “serious” political opinion, than New Labour’s shrill contention that the bankers of RBS/Natwest should only be allowed 100% of salary as a bonus and not 200%.  Why not about 5% like other civil servants, which is what they are.

To return to the subject, free movement of peoples is a great thing.  I do not want governments to tell people where they can and cannot go.  It is wonderful that I can wake up tomorrow and decide to settle in Trieste or Gorzow Wielkopolski, without permission from anybody.  Don’t take it for granted, think about it – isn’t it wonderful?

My role?  I was First Secretary Political and Economic in the British Embassy in Warsaw when the question of our attitude to free movement on accession was decided, and I produced a paper on the subject.  I researched it quite assiduously, including a meeting with the five Romany Kings of Poland in the castle at Oswiecim – Auschwitz.  My conclusion was that there would be no mass migration, but many young Polish people might typically come for a few years to work and earn money to start a home back in Poland.  My paper was influential and I was much congratulated.  Incidentally, I very much underestimated how many Polish people would come, but I am unrepentant – in fact extremely happy about it.

When I first achieved serious political consciousness, in my teen years, I should have been horrified if you had told me that in my lifetime the government would defend the receipt of intelligence from torture and indefinite detention without trial, and much educated opinion would agree.  I would not have believed the government would pay for poster vans going round with signs telling immigrants to go home.  And I would not have believed that some poor Romanian chap arriving in the UK would have been hounded by reporters- to general approbation – because of his ethnicity.

The fundamental worries about Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants do have one rational basis.  More than any other EU states, Romania and Bulgaria were admitted despite the fact that they blatantly did not meet the acquis communitaire across the full range of economic and governance measures.  The decision to pretend they did was fundamentally dishonest, and that will always have future ill-effects.  Romania and Bulgaria are less developed, worse governed and therefore more prone to mass economic emigration.

While I deprecate the dishonesty of pretending they met the acquis, however I did and do support their membership of the EU.  It was the right strategic move.  An approach that said, “you do not meet the acquis, but we will admit you to membership, now let’s work out the consequences” would have had better success.  The EU’s great mistake at present is not offering a fast track to very early membership to Ukraine on a similar basis.

In a couple of decades Bulgaria and Romania will have caught up.  I expect that, because of the difficulties of the societies from which they come in terms of crime and governance, it is not unlikely that there will be a larger proportion of social problems from these new immigrants than from other recent Eastern European immigration, and doubtless we will see these trumpeted in the racist press.  But in the long run, it is another great addition to our country and increase to our own freedoms.  I must go look at the countryside of Eastern Romania.





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  1. “I would not have believed the government would pay for poster vans going round with signs telling immigrants to go home.”

    While not wishing to condone the government’s methods I should point out for sake of accuracy that the poster vans only told those immigrants who were in Britain illegally to go home.

  2. lucythediclonius

    19 Jan, 2014 - 12:41 pm


  3. BrianFujisan

    19 Jan, 2014 - 1:08 pm

    so many people around my area, are hypocrites on this subject, they shout about incomers taking jobs, benefits ect…and then they are calling in the very same – polish, turkish – tradesmen, to get odd jobs and other work done, as the cheapest option, it’s the same atitude on international afairs, they soak up all the MSM lies, and just don’t have a clue whats realy going on

  4. For the first time ever Craig I have to disagree. From first hand experience I have lost jobs, being replace by foreign workers. I have watched as the work available has dwindled away to nothing. I don’t want to seem raceist but I don’t see the influx of foreign workers has been any good for the U.K.

  5. Hi Craig

    I agree with much of what you say, indeed one of my colleagues is Russian, which I find amazing.

    Anyway, the point I want to make … I think that the aborginal nationstate should pay for the welfare provisions of any of their nationals within the EU.

    Eg, if you’re a UK pensioner that lives in Spain, the UK should pay your pension (oh, they do).

    Ok, if you’re a Romanian and you need healthcare in the UK, the Romanian gov should pay for it. If your children go to a UK school, and you’re a Latvian national, the Latvian gov should pay for it. This will remove any basis for the grievance expressed towards these people; it will also put pressue on the aboriginal country to improve the lot of their people.

    As a nett contributor to the EU it would be relatively simple to implement this policy.

    Lastly, something that you may want to address … do you think it is utterly repugnant that the UK takes the most ambitious/hardworking/educated/capable people from other parts of the EU, to the obvious detriment of these countries, so that they can contribute to the UK’s economy?

  6. I had a Bulgarian girlfriend for several years around a decade ago. I spent a lot of time in Bulgaria at that period, partly in Sofia where she lived, partly travelling around the beautiful country.
    She had an MA; all of her Sofia friends were educated, cultured and interesting – but then, so was Sofia. Despite the obvious post-Stalinist poverty, what I saw happening was such things as small independent poetry printing presses starting up, and selling large numbers of volumes from local poets at market stalls, something I have never seen here.
    Everywhere I went I met people who were enthusiastic about the future, learning computer skills and setting up small businesses with second-hand hardware from the west.
    The place was desperately poor, especially in the countryside where Zhivkov had bulldozed all the ancient orchards to implement disastrous Soviet five-year-plans. But the people were keen to modernise and join in with the European project.
    My girlfriend was refused a visa to live here at the time, and there was no work for me there, so we drifted apart. But if she and her friends had been allowed to come here, they would have brought their culture and decency with them – and my life would have been better.
    Visit amazing places such as Koprivshtitza, Melnik and Veliko Tarnovo, rich in history. I’ve met lots of people from these places and they aren’t criminals, thieves, ‘ethnic’ unwanted foreigners. In fact, I wanted to live out there, and still do. To my delight, if I decided to go there, they’d welcome me. That’s because they aren’t a pack of racist thugs.

  7. Pro-EU campaigners are encouraging hundreds of thousands of European migrants in Britain to vote in the country’s European elections, in a bid to defeat Ukip and Eurosceptic candidates.

    Up to 450,000 Poles, as well as Britain’s sizeable diasporas of Italian, German, Spanish, Bulgarian and Romanian migrants, are being urged to vote in the May elections after UK Prime Minister David Cameron called for limits to their benefits, according to The Sunday Times.


    Ref what Gyges said. I have two Romanian friends, a couple who are both physicists, one working in nuclear medicine and the other teaching at a university. Are we depriving the Romanian people of their services? I think so. The Romanian people’s need is greater than ours.

  8. Great to see you’re blogging again Craig. In principle I agree with this post of yours, as I normally do, but in practice there’s a big problem. Volunteering at an advice centre I see a lot of our East European immigrants, and they’re evidently greatly superior on average to their English counterparts as regards their education and work ethic, and hence their employability. But that’s the problem, isn’t it? If Brits were so educated and dynamic that they all had good professional and technical jobs and there was no one left to empty the bins and wash the dishes, then by all means allow immigrants to fill those jobs. But the fact is that millions of our native population lack any skills or education whatsoever, and cannot compete even for the lowest paid jobs with East Europeans who are their superiors in every way. Do you expect them to learn Romanian and get a job there, as they now have the legal right to do? Some of them can scarcely speak their own language, or spell their own address correctly! We need to rebuild our manufacturing industry (deliberately wrecked by Thatcher and her successors) and build an education system that meets the needs of all pupils- not just the academically talented. Till then, mass immigration will create resentment among the very elements who are most likely to express themselves through mindless violence rather than politically.

  9. Saw this about Gulnara. There is a typo in the heading.

    Uzbekistan dissents break into first daughter’s house to ‘reclaim’ artefacts

    Exiled Uzbek dissidents broke into Geneva home of President Islam Karimov’s daughter, publishing images of items allegedly taken from the Uzbek national museum

    By Harriet Alexander
    05 Jan 2014

    Craig’s previous pieces refer to the house –

  10. After all the years spent in East Europe you still don’t understand much of the culture and reality there, don’t you ?

    ” Romania and Bulgaria are less developed, worse governed and therefore more prone to mass economic emigration”

    The news that Romanians couldn’t care less about coming to the UK still didn’t reach you.

    Maintaining convictions in striking contrast to the reality, how they call this symptom ?

  11. “The news that Romanians couldn’t care less about coming to the UK still didn’t reach you. ”

    It’s estimated almost 30 Romanians have flooded into the country already, that’s over one a day since the restrictions were lifted.

  12. The problem I have with unregulated freedom of movement as it’s constituted at present, is that the people most affected by it’s negative consequences tend to be the poorest within the most neoliberal and economically dynamic pockets of Europe. At present this happens to be London and the south east where the pressure on the wages of the lowest paid is at its greatest.

    Freedom of movement has to be aligned to a more equitable system of economic redistribution throughout the EU as whole, and this requires a proper system of planning.

    In theory, the principle of the EU and the freedom of movement that underpins it, has to be a positive thing. However, this has to be something that operates alongside a regulatory economic framework in order to create the conditions by which local and regional economic growth is nurtured throughout the EU more widely.

    As it is, London and the south east is taking a disproportionate (and unsustainable) amount of eastern European migrants and this is putting a strain on the public infrastructure as well as the ability of local councils to meet their housing needs.

  13. Alastair,

    Nice story, even if it was articulated by somebody with rose coloured spectacles living in a bubble. The reality is, that unlike say London and the south east where I live, the people of Sofia are not prone to the same kind of economic and social pressures that many low paid workers here face.

    To overlook or ignore these kinds of pressures, which in part are a consequence of existing distorted migratory patterns, is, frankly, akin to going through life detached from reality.

    The socioeconomic pressures that the unregulated movement of people contribute to local economies and communities in terms of undercutting existing wage levels of the unskilled and semi-skilled as well as housing provision, are particularly great in London and should not be underestimated.

    To imply, as you have done, that anybody who has these legitimate concerns are akin to a “pack of racist thugs” misses the mark completely.

  14. I have enjoyed freedom of movement about Europe for over 30 years already.When I lived in Greece before they were in the EEC I had to spend a day each year at the Alien Buro and Min. of Health for my residence permit and health card.Before Sweden joined I applied for my Uppehallstillstand and renewed it every 6 months.OK now its a right but it was possible before.Before Greece joined an average family could eat out twice a week.We ate out every day. Restaurants were cheap as was the food.Somebody fiddled the books so they could join both the EU and the €uro.JP Morgan was that somebody,and now the Greeks cannot afford to eat.
    Last few years I’ve visited both Bulgaria and Romania often.Both countries are run by mafia style governments.Usually the remnants or family of the old communist regime.The extremes of wealth and poverty hit you right in the face.Alongside the Audi Q8’s are the horses and carts.The EU investment money has long been pocketed by those at the top.In Timisoara the mayors son paints the half cylinder blocks that keep pedestrians away from the trams every 3 months in new colours. Pastel pink, green and blue I have seen. Windmill farms built on the flat landscapes, not turning and not connected to any grid.Sofia like Kiev sees demonstrations every week against the ruling families.Romania’s perfect agriculture (bread basket of Europe) has been replaced by terminator seeds and GM vegetables.From one day to the next, gypsies were told they could no longer use their horses and donkeys on the roads…. Remember the horse meat scandal ??? First you got their horses and now the owners are on their way.And Brussels says , you’ve had all your investment money, now its payback time.
    As I said, I’m a person that has enjoyed the freedom our EU(EEC) brought, but there are also the negative sides to it. Voting for instance.Without becoming a citizen you are only allowed to vote in local and European elections.. national elections no.In the European elections , you don’t vote for a face or a person, but a party.
    And then there are the multitude of languages,religions,customs, foods that must be respected. Cameron has been shouting about , no benefits if you don’t speak the lingo. Who will be judge ? Some of our Newspapers have problems with the language, god help immigrants.So these waves upset the domestic apple cart and overload schools, health service etc with the language anomaly.
    If we impoverish every nation that joins, we can only expect more immigration.Greece has been in for over 10 years and things are getting worse.Bulgaria is unbelievably poor and one of the only European nations accepting Syrian refugees.Prices , rent in Romania are high for most things but wages are low.The EU has perhaps succeeded in getting rid of the border posts, but other walls and divisions are popping up.
    And yes, go see the Danube delta before Canadian mine owners using cyanide kill all the wild life.

  15. There are problems with free movement of peoples that has a particular impact on Britain though:

    1) English is more widely spoken than other languages, makes Britain a more attractive country

    2) Generous welfare system compared to other countries

    2) Lack of employment rights in Britain makes it easier to fire existing workers and replace them with cheaper immigrant labour.

    Which is why I can’t agree on this subject myself.

  16. Generally a sad tale there DoNNy DarKo. You name JP Morgan as instrumental in Greece’s financial collapse. I heard it as Goldman Sachs.

    Greek Debt Crisis: How Goldman Sachs Helped Greece to Mask its True Debt

    Goldman Sachs helped the Greek government to mask the true extent of its deficit with the help of a derivatives deal that legally circumvented the EU Maastricht deficit rules. At some point the so-called cross currency swaps will mature, and swell the country’s already bloated deficit.


  17. In theory, I wouldn’t have had a problem. I liked John Lennon too.

    In practice take a look around Oldham.

    The indigenous feel culturally swamped.

    Even 20 years ago, when I took my son to see where I grew up, I felt I was in India, and I really like India.

    My local school is 98% ethnic majority


  18. I thoroughly agree with you Craig. The world is a much better place for being open. Civilisation i.e. Islam begins at Istanbul.
    But there is some comment around that these Poles etc are net contributors to the UK economy. I and a lot of other people used to be net contributors as well before the unfair competition arrived. The UK does not gain or lose by having immigrants. The policy makes it much easier for me to emigrate to civilisation in Turkey and beyond and much easier for Eastern Europeans to fill my disenchanted shoes.

    The sub-continent Muslims have radically changed the way politics are done. If you want to open a restaurant in a town high street, which you would think were begging for anyone to meet that challenge, it is now a matter of bribery and having connections.
    You can have a Muslim UKIP prospective MEP serving up racist propaganda with the best of them.

    You lot get so touchy about mentioning the not-so-politically correct side of things. Honesty doesn’t get you anywhere in this country any more. But there are places in the Islamic world where honesty is the mark of a real human being. By the time the Muslims are in charge here, in a few decades, plus ca change, you will find them pretty much indistinguishable from the incumbent citizens.

    Sounds off: ( Howls of Liberal outrage )

  19. Guano,

    Leaving aside your absurd notion that the Muslims will be taking over, you do make a point that’s worth touching on – the extent to which the recent wave of immigrants contribute economically to the UK.

    Data from Eurostat indicates that around 600,000 eastern Europeans currently claim benefits including Housing Benefit. Given that in London one has to earn a gross salary of about £30,000 per annum in order for it to be cost effective to work under PAYE without having to claim for Housing Benefit, it can reasonably be assumed that there is a net cost to the exchequer as opposed to the net benefit we are constantly led to believe is the case in the liberal media.

  20. Resident Dissident

    19 Jan, 2014 - 9:01 pm

    Civilisation i.e. Islam begins at Istanbul.

    When will others see you for the overt racist that you are.

  21. DonnyDarko,

    I think the issue of corruption you raised in relation to Romania and Bulgaria is a very important one and shoehorns in to my first contribution above. As you imply, the reality is Europe is not a level playing field but we are being hoodwinked into believing it is.

  22. Guano,

    “Civilisation i.e. Islam begins at Istanbul.”

    That was bit strong. I personally have not had a problem with Muslims, either here or in numerous Muslim countries I have visited. I also haven’t had a problem with Buddhists, or Hindus. In fact once when we were in the depths of rural Kerala, about 100 miles from Cochin, my wife and I were invited into the inner sanctum, by people who spoke virtually no English whatsover. We took off our shoes, and I turned off my camera. We were the only white people there amongst 10,000 at a Festival, and the mother’s passed their babies to us to bless. When you completely unexpectedly find yourself in this role, you have to play the part and enjoy it – well we did. We thought it was magnificent…

    But religion is not a solution. It is simply part of the problem…

    Just try and find an honest man or woman of integrity, in a position of power. I don’t care what nonsense they believe in, nor the colour of their skin…

    But I can’t take Turkey in August. The heat nearly killed me.

    All over the world, the psychopaths are in control, and there seems nothing we can do about it except to try and ignore them.

    Not easy, when their bombs are falling on you.


  23. As usual: brilliant. Two comments: It was politically impossible to admit Bulgaria and Romania into EU whilst openly admitting they were not meeting the standards. Law is law, and as a government you can bent it but you cannot breach it and then openly admit you are breaching it. So, while it is a strategic decision to move the EU’s eastern borders as far away from the core member states as possible, this had to be done with an ambience of lawful process.
    Second, I think it was a valid observation made by the Romanian government last year. Great Britain is not the usual migration destination for the Romanians. For linguistic reasons, Romanians usually migrate to Italy and France (and vice versa), and this is apparent throughout the European history. Poles, on the other hand, have had very strong relations with Britain for at least a hundred years now – perhaps stronger than with any other European country (except Germany)
    Third, it has never been said openly but faced by economic need for immigrant workforce, Western governments seem to have recently decided to replace Asian, Turkish, etc., migration with “white” migrants. What reasoning was behind such a decision is unclear to me, but I can safely assume such decisions have been made in more than one capital. Yes, white migrants are still beating boys, esp. during pre-election periods when parties and candidates need to channel the dissatisfaction of the society.
    That said, I want to thank you for your role in opening up Europe.

  24. Very glad to see you are once again causing trouble, hope you are well.

    Broadly agree with your statements. In a world where much is worrying, to my mind the EEC is very much a good thing, particularly when you think that it emerged in a region riven by conflict for centuries.

  25. DoNNyDarKo,

    I have just read what you wrote. Thank you. That was Brilliant. You were just so honest.

    We very nearly went to Bulgaria 18 months ago to a music festival – staying in a local hotel. We had booked and paid for the tickets, then my wife read the reviews of the hotel we were going to stay in – written by an English couple – and the Mafia control…

    Whilst I reckon it would have been O.K. – We have never been put off going anywhere in the past – my wife had a nightmare – and bottled it – and said no I’m not going…

    This really surprised me – cos she is up for anything…including jumping out of an old WWII Russian plane from 10,000 feet above Cuba…

    So I said – well you cancel it….

    Under EU? regulations – we got all our money back…

    But we still haven’t been to Bulgaria.

    And I wanted to go there…

    Lived and worked with the Polish all my life.


  26. Its not such a great success for the people on benefits who are getting evicted to make room for migrant labour who giver bigger rental returns.

  27. Resident Dissident

    19 Jan, 2014 - 10:22 pm


    As far as I can see there are no Eurostat figures on the number of East European Benefit claimants in the UK. But there are UK Government figures and as the total is 400k for all foreigners I very much doubt the figure you provide and its provenance.

    Just because they are claiming benefits it doesn’t mean that they are all claiming Housing Benefit as you infer. In order to be entitled to Housing Benefit migrants have to have worked for 12 months uninterrupted in the UK. Many East European migrants work outside London often in seasonal agriculture.

    The facts you claim to provide are clearly just misinformation and probably a reflection of your prejudices.

  28. The hard man of Europe speaks. He must have a special department to create his petty little wheezes. Drawn up by the hideous IDS and approved by Fox I see.

    ‘David Cameron plans to strip welfare handouts from immigrants who cannot speak English.

    In a radical bid to slash Britain’s benefits bill, the Prime Minister intends to stop printing welfare paperwork in foreign languages and prevent claimants using taxpayer-funded translators at benefits offices.

    The move – which would also hit British residents who cannot speak English – was due to be announced tomorrow, but has been delayed following a row with Nick Clegg.

    Tories hope that axeing foreign-language versions of documents explaining how to claim benefits would make it harder for immigrants such as newly arrived Romanians and Bulgarians to cash in on the UK’s benefits system, encourage others already here to learn English – and save money spent on translators.

    Referring to the controversial Channel 4 programme, one Conservative aide said: ‘The Benefits Street culture must end. Period.’

    The plans were been drawn up by Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith. One Tory insider said: ‘The vast majority of voters will think this idea is plain common sense. It is unreasonable to expect taxpayers to spend huge sums on translators when people should be learning to read and write English.’

    Former Tory Cabinet Minister Liam Fox also gave the scheme the thumbs-up, saying: ‘The principle is a good one but it needs to be introduced in a way that’s fair and reasonable.’

  29. TonyOpmoc…on fine form

    Great to see you back Tony…

    Alistair @ 2;40 pm..interesting… shame about your forced apart love story.

  30. Gyges:- I understand that currently, despite what you may have heard from the corporate media, the Tory regime and fake opposition, each member state of the EU pays for health and social security costs incurred by its citizens in other member states for the first three months. I believe that until it joined the EU, what was Czechoslovakia had a policy of providing free health care regardless of status. A report into “health tourism” by the UK regime has been quietly shelved because it found that the problem barely existed.

  31. Summerhead

    very interesting comment … links, please …

  32. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    19 Jan, 2014 - 11:41 pm

    Can anyone name any EU countries other than the UK which provide translations (into several languages, not all of which are EU languages) of literature explaining how to claim state benefits?

    Idem for leaflets issued by the NHS.

    And idem for any other business connected with the state.

  33. None of you will like, what I am about to write, and you probably won’t believe me, and that’s O.K..Just in case you are wondering one of my friends is an ex-soldier – and he also has the T-Shirt to prove it..and he’s just done a sponsored thing, you know the kind of thing that ex-soldiers do, and he has all his arms and legs, and is delighted, that he has come back from the brink, and he has met us lot – just a bunch of friends who go and see live bands together in our local pubs…

    When it happened, I knew nothing about it. I don’t watch TV…but then I read the news about Woolwich – and I literally threw up – and I haven’t done that in years…

    I thought they wouldn’t dare do that again…Of course at this stage of convulsion – I was just reading words on a screen – I had seen no photography, and nothing on TV…

    So the next day..I got my head together – and because I am retired and have nothing much better to do…I examined all the detailed photographic evidence as best as I could over the next few days and weeks

    I read Chris Spivey – I saw 108morris108 videos on youtube…

    And I didn’t say a word…

    Some of my friends -were writing -what exactly you might expect them to write on Facebook. I didn’t write a word in reply…

    I just told one friend of mine – look at this…but went into no more detail…

    I am not a Professional photographer…but when I was 15, I was doing my own colour printing – using a Russian Zenith enlarger – and Ferrania Colour Film…I didn’t just do Black & White..I did Colour Too…

    I also know how to use search engines – and found what the locals in Woolwich wrote about it…

    Now you can believe what you like.

    They said you can’t write that..

    What about Langley Estate – and Bury?

    Give me a Break…

    Just look at the evidence…

    Read the analysis of the evidence…

    Use Your Own Eyes…

    And yet they still got away with it.

    Too dangerous to touch.

    Don’t say a word

    Woolwich was Faked – Very Poorly – an Amateur Production…

    Listen to the sound recorded on the bus – and what is being said…

    Oh but no, no one goes to that level of investigation and analysis do they?

    So what was the point of it all???

    And Boston too.

    Are all you TV zombies – believing everything you are fed…???

    These people do this stuff for real too.

    They kill, and they assassinate.

    This is the American version


  34. ‘Incidentally, I very much underestimated how many Polish people would come, but I am unrepentant – in fact extremely happy about it.’

    Commendable honesty there Craig- and good to see you posting regularly again.

    As a homeowner who requires the occasional services of builders and plumbers, and an occasional visitor to bars and restaurants who appreciates decent customer service,I ‘m also personally ‘happy’ about high Polish immigration over the last decade. However if I worked in construction, catering, or any other economic sector benefitting from this extra supply of inexpensive labour, I ‘d be less pleased.

    ‘In a couple of decades Bulgaria and Romania will have caught up’. Err…given the downward trajectory in wages and salaries in the UK at the moment, some future convergence in UK and Bulgarian/Romanian living standards is certainly on the cards, but more via the continued erosion of living standards here- for all but the extractive elites.

    Techno @7.56- Two of your points are spot-on, but you’re wrong to say the ‘high’ level of UK benefits is a complicating factor in free movement across the EU. Rather, the UK benefits system , unlike most of our neighbours,peculiarly has an array of benefits that are ‘non contributory'( pension credit, Housing Benefit etc). Hence the panic over large Roma families from Bulgaria & Romania possibly arriving in significant numbers, to which Craig alludes.

  35. Rasvan,

    You said:-

    “” Romania and Bulgaria are less developed, worse governed and therefore more prone to mass economic emigration”

    The news that Romanians couldn’t care less about coming to the UK still didn’t reach you.

    Maintaining convictions in striking contrast to the reality, how they call this symptom ? ”

    I honestly do not know what the true figures reflect relative to migratory patterns to the UK from Romania and Bulgaria.

    I can say, that after some 300 years of unyielding exploitation of the Caribbean by Britain ( pre and post slave emancipation) it was mainly in the post-World War 11 period that persons from the Caribbean were invited to Britain, notably by then Minister Enoch Powell, and thus a sizeable minority of Caribbean descendants are to be found living as Brits today.

    The contemporary reality, even in the British colony of the Turks and Caicos Islands, where I live and work, is that primarily for higher education, but for some considerable time the preferred migratory choices, for economic reasons, from the Caribbean, have been to the US and Canada.

    P.S. Nice to have you back Craig.

  36. Daniel

    The money isn’t a moral issue. Craig was commandered to work for a Thatcher globalist dogma for which we have to pay, because war is more expensive. War is reserved for countries that need to be colonised or neutralised for the benefit of foreign exploitation, like Syria and South Sudan.

    I wish the BBC would stop repeating the lies about Northern Ireland that its people want to open up investigations about murdered loved ones, when every body in the whole world know that the UK did the murders to create hatred and ethnic tension. Even in Syria when you contemplate how many tourists visit Southern Turkey, Cameron is well able to bus in mercenaries from the UK to carry out sectarian killings in Syria. We are not supposed to distrust our governments but we should start to believe that whatever they are capable of in terms of treachery, they will be doing , and well beyond.

  37. As a [voluntary, world wandering] migrant myself, I wonder, do those who open the gates, live near them?

  38. Craig O/T Did you know the cheery Ghanaian Komla Dumor who was a presenter on the World Service. He has sadly died following a heart attack aged 41. He had a big smile.

  39. Meanwhile the chief actors are gathering in Davos 22-25 January.

    Same old. Same old.
    75 pages of the names of the 1%. Each page contains approx.30 names.
    The list includes Cameron, Osborne and Blair plus Netanyahu for good measure.

  40. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 8:51 am

    MARY – PLEASE MAKE AN EFFORT TO KEEP ON TOPIC – EVERYONE ELSE IS DOING SO and there have been a lot of very good contributions so far!!

  41. Thanks for the great article, Craig, and the seasonally adjusted list of village idiots from all over the world, Mary, hell bent on scraping more profits from meagre families, hell bent on intending to undercut local labour with immigrant low wage slavery and up for more war and mischief to accomplish their moneyraking goals.

    I wish god is huge, if there is one, so huge that he could piss down the piste leaving a yellow streak for any alien to see, running straight into the Davos conference centre, drowning the lot of these money bags, lay them out to freeze and keep them in perpetum for all to see, yellow frozen out and pickled in piss.

    me, I’m an immigrant too.

    But then so are many who scream blue murder today in this nation of immigrants. UKIP/Tory hypocrits who forever orientate themselves and take note and copy the largest immigrant country and call it your own policy, feckless, barely managing and not taking heed of better, historically grounded and tried european systems/policies.

    sod the lot and vote for daft Rupert Read instead?
    Were have all the Independents gone?

  42. Read this morning that Miliband has bettered Cameron in a game of political one-up man-ship. He wants people claiming benefits to do Maths tests on top of their English proficiency tests. Brilliant !!!
    We know who it is aimed at, but this will bite them in the arse. Labour especially has watered our education system down so badly that we are seeing 16 year olds leaving school without the basics. Are they now to be penalised financially because our Govt is failing them? And as for the cheats, they shall always cheat ! There is always someone around to help fill out a form or take the test for you.
    Yes, lets divide society further. It is just more proof that both parties are clueless when it comes to the results of their policies of the past, again, Labour especially.
    The grand design is a United States of Europe with an unelected elite dictating from Brussels what’s good for us. I’d far rather keep the old EEC.
    I’m living in Austria at the moment,and HC Strache is walking it. They have after 3 months deliberation managed to keep him out with yet another Grand Coalition.It’s grand allright. Its also the reason the far right keep getting the majority of votes. People are tired of being signed up to things that they don’t want, which is what the left & right parties in all European countries seem to do.So come the next election, he’ll probably increase his vote to over 50% and manage to keep a grand coalition from forming.
    Shades of the 30’s ?? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see where things are going, but you do need to be one now in the UK to get benefits

  43. We are always hearing about immigrants helping our country economically. There is no attempt by politicians to help this country economically. All that exists is an agenda to scrap the UK in favour of the interests of a global elite that wants to trade globally.

    You’d have thought that we have a skills shortage – so why are all my construction trades qualifications and experience being rendered invalid by new QVF qualifications. Maybe because there are no construction jobs to fill, no building programme, no Green plan, no plan even to keep the lights on – only a plan for politicians to survive by borrowing until the next election in order to receive their bonus/payback in the political gravy train.

    The construction industry is a combination of old-fashioned, Old Labour, jobs for the boys on the one side and highly bent, highly financially mortgaged city financiers, plus a lot of cheap immigrant labour. The rules churned out by the old beer and sandwich boys become stiffer and more expensive to deploy, and the costs have to support multiple layers of virtual companies with their financial hierarchy of insurance and due diligence self-protection. Printed money pays for the eager minions.

    I am sure there are great opportunities among the fat middle classes for industrious and conscientious construction workers, but here where I live in Muslim Birmingham nobody wants to pay for work being done properly. The Local council advises that they cannot police standards and that employers of bodgers and cowboys will fail to sell or rent out their properties one day. No. The properties remain faulty for years, until someone can be found to sign off the bodges as safe for office purposes. By the time the installations have burned down premises, bodger has scarpered and owner has long ago upgraded to another investment.

    I wish all immigrants well if they can make a living on the low fruit ofthis process. But by the time they are defending the reputation of their companies, they too will be losing custom to the next wave of flybenights whose names, addresses, and company details are untraceable.

    A landlord who buys a cheap property to rent out is only interested in keeping the property going long enough to pay for their ultimate ambition, be that a car or dream house, or shop or business. There just does not exist the idea of investing in quality. There is a vast chasm between the government regulations and what is done in practise. The vast sums of money spent on surveillance are not used to implement laws, they are used by government to put leverage on people they want to use to circumvent the law.

  44. In short, espionage is used firstly for tracking criminals and secondly for manipulating the progress of Islam in this country. There are no terrorists so they have to manufacture incidents to justify the cost universal espionage. They use the spying system to identify good Muslms, whose chances they can block by setting naughty Muslims against them, and to raise the opportunities of the bad Muslims, in order to disgust the English population with their bad behaviour.

    Good Muslims, behaving justly and commanding the love and respect of UK citizens are a nightmare for the ancient sect of Druids called the Church of England. There are enough dodgy Muslims around to persuade the good hearts of the English people to bin Islam forever. Immigration is a tool for manipulating the sensibilities of ordinary people as well as being a tool for creating a global trading empire.

  45. HabbabKuk – LOL

    My 2 penneth – it’s not about money it’s about resources. We don’t have the resources to support an ever-expanding population – I won’t bore you with a list of our failing infrastructure. That said, I can’t blame anyone wanting to move to better themselves so there lies the connundrum for me personally.

  46. ‘But then so are many who scream blue murder today in this nation of immigrants.’

    ahhh the old, globalist ‘nation of immigrants’ trope. Of course historically Britain has been a nation of emigrants, not immigrants. At UN summits on migration in the 50s the UK was designated in the ’emigrant’ camp, as anyone with an iota of histrical knowledge is aware. Fifty thousand Huguenots admitted across the whole British Isles (including Ireland) after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and less than 200,000 Ashkenazim admitted during the pogroms of the late nineteenth centure do not a ‘nation of immigrants’ make.

  47. I’m sorry but this is probably the biggest load of bollocks I have ever read. It’s good to know that as a policy wonk touring the castles of Poland, you were, and apparently still are, so utterly divorced from the realities of mass-immigration for ordinary folk.

    “The arrival of so many Poles, Czechs, Hungarians, Latvians etc in the UK has been a brilliant social and cultural development”.

    Yea, right. How wonderfully enriched we all feel. In my local town it has resulted in a massive increase in crime and the undercutting of the British worker by people prepared to live 10 or more to a house. You can get a Polish decorator there who will do a 12 hour day for £60. It is simply not possible for a British worker with a mortgage and kids to compete. But don’t worry. We can now enjoy Latvian folk music at the Arts Centre.

    “I would not have believed the government would pay for poster vans going round with signs telling immigrants to go home”

    This is patently false. The posters told illegal immigrants to go home. It was a cheap political stunt by the Conservatives to give the impression that they actually care about doing anything about it when in truth none of the three parties do. They would have had no effect, very few people would have seen them, and many of those that did would be unable to read them.

    “it is not unlikely that there will be a larger proportion of social problems from these new immigrants than from other recent Eastern European immigration, and doubtless we will see these trumpeted in the racist press.”

    Christ Alive! It’s you who’s partly responsible for it but you are so alienated from the consequences of your highly regarded academic papers that all that bothers you is the potential reaction from the “racist press”, whatever that is.

    “I must go and look at the countryside of Eastern Romania”

    How (ahem) bourgeois is this? You go off butterflying in the Carpathians and sing the praises of being able to settle in Trieste while the ordinary worker has to bear the disastrous consequences of your desire to rub everyone’s noses in diversity!

  48. “In my local town it has resulted in a massive increase in crime”

    And would you share which town that is so we can check the actual statistics – Crime has been reducing in most of the UK in recent years. It has reduced in counties like Lincolnshire where there has been a large increase in immigrant population

    I wouldn’t deny that immigration causes strains, but it also solves many problems and does enrich our society (we could just give the entire country back to the Celts) so there is no need for the exaggeration employed by the BNP/UKIP/Tories/Daily Mail which 9 times out of 10 is based on lies rather than facts. It is the oldest trick in the book to divert attention away from dealing with real economic problems by playing the race card.

  49. “Fifty thousand Huguenots admitted across the whole British Isles (including Ireland) after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and less than 200,000 Ashkenazim admitted during the pogroms of the late nineteenth centure do not a ‘nation of immigrants’ make.”

    No lets just look at all those who arrived after the Celts and the language we use. You might get your thrills by painting youself with Woad and speaking an ancient version of Welsh – most of us don’t.

  50. Ref Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!
    20 Jan, 2014 – 8:51 am
    MARY – PLEASE MAKE AN EFFORT TO KEEP ON TOPIC – EVERYONE ELSE IS DOING SO and there have been a lot of very good contributions so far!!

    Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!
    18 Jan, 2014 – 5:05 pm
    O/T, as Mary is wont to say, but never mind.
    The BBC informs us that Lord McAlpine has died at his home in Italy.
    As the dead cannot sue, I do hope that this event will not embolden some of the Eminences to repeat the scurrilous accusations they made on this blog about McAlpine some months ago – accusations which were shown to be unfounded.
    I do also hope that there will be now gloating on here, nor comments of the sort “hope he burns in hell”.
    Thank you kindly!

    On the Obama NSA thread!

    Get lost.

  51. @Daniel Rich

    “I wonder, do those who open the gates, live near them?”

    What exactly are you inferring? Don’t want to upset your right wing friends for whom being anti-immigration and against the different is something of a matter of faith?

  52. Mary

    So Habba is now your role model? He has just as much right to make off topic posts as you do.

  53. You can get off my back too ESLO. Your best mate is being hypocritical.

    What does ESLO stand for btw? Or are you one and the same as Habbabkuk as someone suggested two threads back?

  54. “Exposing Shitty Little Orthodoxies” from Orwell. I very much doubt Habba shares my stance on immigration – see above.

  55. ESLO and Resident Dissident; do try asking Habbabkuk some questions on this thread. I expect he’ll prove evasive. He’s racist.

  56. Clark

    If I see racism then I tend to respond when I see it (see my posts above) – I haven’t seen it from Habba in the past. Concern about levels of immigration is not the same thing as being a racist.

  57. ESLO, Mary obviously commented to alert Craig to the death of someone he may have known due to his connection with Ghana, whereas Habbabkuk clearly attempted to derail the previous thread. I know you dislike Mary’s comments, but these actions are not remotely equivalent, and Habbabkuk is indeed hypocritical. Repeatedly. But what can you expect from a nasty authoritarian racist who tries to disrupt discussion? Don’t be his ally; he’s using you.

  58. ESLO, I may have oversimplified. I suspect Habbabkuk is one of those unpleasant people who like to exaggerate fears of immigration for other political ends.

    I’ll find Habbabkuk’s racist joke and link to it.

  59. Nevermind Rennard has been ‘suspended’.

    Clegg is in a pickle.

    This morning this exchange took place on Radio 4 Today between him and Justin Webb at around 8.15am

    Webbe asked whether Clegg would continue to work with Rennard if he apologised, and reminded him that when Jenny Tonge “said something about Israel that you didn’t want her to say” he sacked her. He replied that Jenny had said something that “deeply, deeply upset many Jewish people in this country”.

    A friend wrote to Webb

    Dear Justin,

    I liked your questioning of Nick Clegg. Glad you asked him about Baroness Tonge. Pity you couldn’t have gone the extra inch and asked: So, is “deeply, deeply upsetting Jewish people” the only criterion for getting sacked from the Lib Dem party?


  60. ESLO, racism and sock-puppetry combined, from Habbabkuk.

  61. Clark

    I really don’t think you have Habba right (I suspect he is a fairly mainstream Tory which doesn’t automatically qualify him as a racist – at least it doesn’t in my book) – if anyone is disrupting this thread at the present it is you and Mary. There are plenty of issues that have been raised from an anti-immigration perspective and worse that only I appear to be challenging.

  62. Oh my god Clark. That’s some deeply shocking waythism you’ve unearthed there.

  63. Does anyone know where to find Habbabkuk’s comments about Eastern European emigration across Europe? It’s on some previous thread, but I don’t know where to find it.

    Habbabkuk acts like a manipulative and cowardly hypocrite. He hasn’t dared to post his previously published opinions on this thread, where it would be on-topic and subject to scrutiny.

    Anyone who thinks Habbabkuk is Hasbara, check my link above. Habbabkuk just sometimes acts like Hasbara, because it’s a good way to wind people up and thereby disrupt discussion. He uses “exposure of anti-Semitism” as a tool.

  64. Hi ESLO, could you enlighten me as to how mass-immigration “enriches our society”?

    Also, would you place a limit on it?

  65. ESLO, I realise that I’m disrupting this thread and I regret it; I’m trying to keep my comments brief. But Habbabkuk’s disruption has continued for over a year, and your support for him contributed to the resignation of the moderator, eventually causing comments to be closed entirely. Please reconsider.

  66. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 3:25 pm

    @ Clark

    You should really stop obsessing about me. Why do you?

    Calm down, dear!

    And you and Mary should both get your facts right: there was a good discussion going on this thread’s theme, with some interesting comments and takes on both sides of the debate when Mary suddenly popped up with a post about a person from Ghana followed 31 minutes later by another completely O/T comment on the forthcoming Davos meeting (or, at least, Mary made no attempt to tie in her Davos post with the subject of this thread). Was that not the sort of trollish behavious of which I stand frequently accused….by Clark and Mary, for example?

    If I have time this evening, I might post a few small elements on immigration.

  67. ‘No lets just look at all those who arrived after the Celts and the language we use. You might get your thrills by painting youself with Woad and speaking an ancient version of Welsh – most of us don’t’.

    More historical gibberish. You are conflating the comings and goings of assorted Germanic tribes across the North Sea and Irish Sea in the dark ages with present day mass immigration. Between 1066 and the mid 1950s, inward migration into these Isles from outside was miniscule. The ‘nation of immigrants’ trope clearly seeks to obscure this fact, as you well know.

  68. Just out of interest I read an article by the head of medicine in Bulgaria and she said that 50% of the Doctors who qualified in Bulgaria in 2012 had left the country and were in the US, Germany and the UK. Some of 2013 potential qualifiers had already been headhunted by other EU countries, with Austria high on the list.

  69. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 3:35 pm

    PS – the only thing I can remember posting in the past about immigration from Eastern Europe was – I think – that a number of Eastern European governments (I think of Romanian, Bulgaria, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia) seem to be cynically using freedom of movement within the EU to rid themselves of a minority – the Roma – which they hate and despise. Roms flood into western Europe because those governments do everything possible to make life as difficult as possible for the Roma in those countries. They are, in effect, exporting a ‘problem’ for the making of which they themselves are primarily responsible.

    I realise, of course, that the arguments about mass immigration cannot and should not be confined to the question of the Roms.

  70. The Hard Man and the Hard Woman of the Tory party have decided.

    Jobless migrants to be DENIED housing benefit: Ministers insist UK’s generous welfare system will no longer be a magnet for citizens of other EU states
    New rules mean EU arrivals claiming jobseeker’s allowance will not be able to receive housing benefit as well
    Those who get jobs but then lose them will only be entitled to housing benefit for six months
    Ministers hope the measures will cut migration to the UK from EU states
    But both Iain Duncan Smith and Theresa May say more needs to be done

    UPDATED: 13:33, 20 January 2014

    Sorry Clark Can’t remember and it’s too depressing to read back through some of the stuff.

  71. Habbabkuk, thanks for your constructive comment at 3:35 pm. I however dispute that the movement of Rom’s constitutes a “flood into western Europe” (Roma are a minority, and Western Europe is big), and point out that “flood” is frequently used as a “scare word” in the context of immigration.

  72. Old Mark/Anon

    You may wish to ignore the impact of the mass immigration of Anglo Saxons that gave us much of our language and culture I don’t. Subsequent waves of immigration might not have been as significant in size – but they have also added to our culture. The current wave hardly qualifies as mass immigration in proportionate terms to the Anglo Saxons – and their are plenty of other societies around the world that have benefited from immigration, most notably the US.

    There are obviously short term limits to what the infrastructure of any country can cope with in terms of an increase in population – but we can and will cope despite the little Englanders claim of imminent collapse. If people are really worried about the strains caused by immigration, and how criminal elements often benefit as a result, then they perhaps should pay more attention to addressing the causes as to why people wish to move in the first place. Strangely enough the Little Englanders who complain about immigration are usually the most ignorant when it comes to ideas to deal with the root causes.

  73. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 5:01 pm

    @ ESLO

    “If people are really worried about the strains caused by immigration, and how criminal elements often benefit as a result, then they perhaps should pay more attention to addressing the causes as to why people wish to move in the first place.”

    That is right. As far as the Roms are concerned, western European governments should put pressure on the govts of the countries I mentioned previously to treat the Roms better and make greater efforts to integrate them socially and economically. Let’s be honest about this – Roms are victims in their countries of origin.

    I should add that as for immigrants in general from Eastern Europe, I don’t believe that their crime rate is any higher than that of indigenous populations – possibly lower, in fact.

    Re cultural enrichment in any meaningful way, I believe it is simply too early to tell. Inter alia, it will depend on how long these new immigrants stay and how their socio-economic position develops over time.

  74. What Blair says when you try and citizen’s arrest him

    By Alex Stevenson  Monday, 20 January 2014 3:55 PM 
    Not again… Not again…

    Tony Blair has brushed off yet another attempt to citizen’s arrest him over the Iraq War.

    The former prime minister was dining at a Shoreditch restaurant with a group of around eight others when the incident happened.

    Twiggy Garcia told Vice magazine: “I went over to him, put my hand on his shoulder and said: ‘Mr Blair, this is a citizen’s arrest for a crime against peace, namely your decision to launch an unprovoked war against Iraq.

    “‘I am inviting you to accompany me to a police station to answer the charge'”.

    As expected, Blair declined the invitation. Instead, according to Garcia, he replied: “‘No, shouldn’t you be worried about Syria?'”

    Garcia continued: “I replied that I can only address things that are within my grasp at any one time. Then he asked me, ‘But don’t you agree that Saddam was a brutal dictator and he needed to be removed?’ and I replied ‘Not by an illegal war’. Then he started talking about how lots of people died in the 1980s.”

    The Office of Tony Blair issued a statement pointing out the ex-PM was open to debate the pros and cons of his decision to support the 2003 decision to oust Saddam Hussein from power.

    A spokesperson said: “There is nothing to report here apart from fact that Mr Blair did offer to discuss the issue – that offer was declined and the individual walked off. Nothing else happened. Everyone is fine and they had a great time at the restaurant.”

    Garcia’s attempt to bring Blair to justice for his involvement in the 2003 invasion of Iraq is the fifth citizen’s arrest attempt encouraged by the website, set up by columnist and author George Monbiot.

    “The purpose is to keep the issue in the public eye, remind people a great crime has been done and that there’s been no justice served as a result of that crime,” he told

    “In itself, it won’t lead to a reconfiguration of global justice, but it helps to create a different political environment and then that in turn hopefully creates more pressure to ensure that crimes like this don’t go unpunished in future.”

    Not all those who perform citizen’s arrests on Blair will be doing so for purely political reasons, as Monbiot’s website promises those who follow its rules 25% of the funds it has raised.


  75. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 5:05 pm

    @ Clark

    OK, we can find a different word to “flood” if you like. I wasn’t trying to do a Daily Mail, but there are many in the country I am most familiar with (many of whom busk on the metro trains or beg on the street) and I understand that London (and perhaps other cities) also have quite a few these days. Call it a flood or a trickle, but they are a very noticeable feature, let us say.

  76. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!

    20 Jan, 2014 - 5:10 pm

    Reading Mary’s post above on citizen’s arrests, I was wondering if anyone knows what could happen after the subject of the arrest declines to go to a police station. Can reasonable force be used to make him do so? Or should the citizen call a police officer, restraining with reasonable force if necessary the subject until one such appears? Or is the whole concept just theatre?
    Genuine questions – I rather like the whole idea!

  77. As a Romanian national I completely agree with you Craig. These 2 countries are underdeveloped but they are quickly advancing and being part of the EU is accelerating the process which I consider is a good thing for human kind.

    What really frustrates me is the manipulating schemes of what you called ‘the racist media’. They are never honest and always take the opinion of the government party they are supported by.

    Something should be done to open the eyes of the community to the real world.

  78. Oh dear. Two mentions of “Little Englanders” and the usual guff about how it’s ok to have millions of third-world inhabitants settle here because some Germanic tribes migrated here 1,500 years ago.

    What do you find so wrong about a country wanting to maintain its culture and identity? What do you have so against it that you wish to see it disolved? Is it a contempt for “Little Englanders”? Why don’t you apply these standards to other countries that wish to maintain their identity?

    One in ten babies born here today are Muslim. I don’t have anything against Muslims, but why are we turning this into a Muslim country? Please could you give me an argument outlining the reasons why this must happen? It must surely be ideological because most studies conclude that the economic benefit levels out at about zero.

    I’m sorry, ESLO, because I agree with much of what you write here, but yours is one shitty little leftist orthodoxy that needs exposing.

  79. That should have been on the War Criminals thread of course. So sorry.

  80. Inselmenschen, don’t you just love them.

    Why do we direct our wailing and anguish to those who travel for work globally, not just from Eastern Europe, but nalso a large contingent from America and Australia?

    Should the debate not be directed to those who have fettered globalisation as if they’d given birth to it?, although with Mandleson such thoughts are wishfull thinking.

    Not to forget those who undermined what little was left of sustainable systems, in order to make us dependent on their processed goodies, ideally without competition, two fingers to the WHO as long as Jack is allright.

    The Uruguay round of trade talks has given immense powers to companies and they are running rings round us. Always out for dismantling trade barriers, they never propose a global accounting structure or global socially responsible tax levels do they now, instead they are waving party political puppets in front of our neyes and call it democracy, making damn sure that they control the media and keep this hyst of the 21st century going.

    Its the companies that regret to offer contracts, who work solely with self employed/on call bonded labour and cheap illegal immigrants as long as they don’t know about their status, they should be cursed/reigned back, as well as the carrerist puppets who bend over to take it as it comes, regardless of party, so why can nobody see it?

    Especially those who are seeminghly so HIghQ here should posess enough historic facts to comprehend that we are being wound up by some poor old fashioned gameplay,played only by rich people, the kind who gloats in Davos, lays on a little economic gloom and, hey presto goes forth to the next ripp off.

    We are supposed to get angry with the people who are trying to make ends meet, so they can hide their complicity in this globaliser game, party politicians and lawmakers are guilty of playing us off.

    If we end up denuded of manufacturing and in the yoch of globalising seed merchants and GMO marketeers, then this is also down to the party political systems we allowed to reign over us.

    But hey don’t you just love a good rogue…..Errrooooolllll

  81. Habbabkuk, the arrestee would likely tell them to FO. Understandable, really, given the rather perverse fantasies of some of our citizens:

    “His punishment should rightfully be arraignment and sentence for his war crimes at The Hague, that life sentence to be spent in a solitary cell on a cold island with a tape on loop of the screams of the little ones having their dressings removed without anaesthetic. On the wall will be projected endless images of the babies born in Fallujah with gross deformities from the dust filled with depleted uranium that their mummies and daddies ingested and inhaled. That should suffice until he meets his Maker.”

    Not that I don’t think the war criminal should be in prison, but you can understand why we leave law enforcement in the hands of the Police.

  82. “I don’t have anything against Muslims, but why are we turning this into a Muslim country?”

    God forbid our national religion would be one originating in the Middle East.

  83. Habbabkuk, thanks for being friendly in your 5:05 and 5:10 comments, especially seeing as you were responding to a comment from Mary.

    Alas, I think the citizen’s arrest is all theatre. From Wikipedia:

    “In order for the arrest to be lawful, [… it must appear] to the person making the arrest that it is not reasonably practicable for a constable to make the arrest instead”

    Unfortunately, the Wikipedia article doesn’t mention any powers to detain or use of reasonable force:

  84. That was good of you Anon to remind readers what I said should happen to him, once arrested, arraigned and sentenced.

  85. Why Fred? Because this country has spent thousands of years messing it up?

  86. Ok Mary. Let’s hear you say the same about Assad..

  87. Anon, 5:21: Babies aren’t Muslim. We should not assign a religion to children, who aren’t in a position to make such decisions until later.

    Anon, read the comment section you quoted at 5:32 again. It’s not Blair who is to have bandages torn off without aesthetic or become deformed by depleted uranium dust; those are things that have already happened to others. It isn’t even “eye for an eye”. Seen properly, that comment calls only for Blair to face mere recordings of the consequences of his decisions and scheming.

  88. Hi Fred, one of the more stupid things you have written.

  89. There wouldn’t appear to be any grounds for a citizens arrest on Tony Blair and any attempt to detain him or drag him off to the local nick would seem to invite charges of assault, false imprisonment and kidnap.

    I have my doubts about the story anyway, Blair is still protected by a team of armed police offers, said to be 20 strong, at a cost to taxpayers of £400,000 pa. Twiggy would’ve been on the floor with a Glock to the temple before getting within touching distance.

    Good to see you back Craig, looking at how quickly we’ve settled into the usual pattern of backbiting, trolling and stupid conspiracy theories it’s like you never went away.

  90. Hi Clark, I’ve noticed this to be the stock reaction. “A baby can’t be Muslim!”, you cry. But we all know it is, and will be. You are applying a left-liberal idea to people who have absolutely no respect for your notions. Honesly Clark, you need to sort it out and get a grip on reality.

  91. Mary?

  92. You may wish to ignore the impact of the mass immigration of Anglo Saxons that gave us much of our language and culture I don’t

    I don’t ‘ignore’ this fact ESLO, but I think it is an utterly false analogy on your part to compare the dark age wanderings of assorted Germanic tribes around the North Sea with present day migrations of large numbers of citizens from one nation state to another.

  93. No, Anon. You and others who call babies ‘Muslim’ contribute to the thing you regard as a problem. You are prejudging people on the basis of accidents of birth, and by assigning ethnic identity to children (who have no choice) you’re reinforcing the very thing you claim to oppose.

  94. Absolute tosh Clark. You are so buried in denial it’s hilarious to behold. People from Pakistan and Somalia have no regard for your left-liberal dross about not assigning children a Muslim identity by “accidents of birth”. And who can blame them? You are assigning liberal Western ideas to Muslims that are wholly alien to most of them. I have spent half my life in Muslim countries and you need to recognise that in a Muslim-majority country your type will be the first up.

  95. Anon

    I’m afraid you are creating a somewhat emotive strawman

    I don’t believe any country maintains a culture and identity frozen in aspic – they all develop and evolve over time. The UK certainly has, and our “magpie” tendency to pick up from other cultures has been one of strengths throughout history. It is those that resist change that are really denying our natural identity and are most likely to end up fascism and other political creeds associated with nationalism. Orwell made this very point in the Lion and the Unicorn – which the none too bright John Major when quoting about old maids cycling to evensong and warm beer . I don’t want to see anything worthwhile from our past being dissolved – I want to keep it, encourage and develop. But that said there are a lot of things from the past that I would like to see the back – of. There are also some things that are being introduced into our society from elsewhere that I do not like (and as I get older and more intolerant I see even more – but I suspect that this is a factor of age rather than a wave of immigration).

    Rather than focusing on what you see as the people you see as responsible for change (i.e immigrants and Muslims (most of whom are no longer immigrants)) perhaps you should focus on what exactly you think they are destroying in our culture and identity that you believe is worth keeping. My guess is that a lot of Muslims may actually agree with many items on your personal list – and would actually be supportive given half a chance. Sure some Muslims have ideas that you, I and most people would find totally objectionable – but I could say the same of Daily Mail readers (and I daresay you have a similar view of Guardian readers) – but we do have institutions and ways of working that allow such conflicts to be resolved. Yes they may have to work harder than in the past – but then we need to make them work, rather than say it is all too difficult and retreat to our battlelines and Daily Mail editorials. Sure things have to be done to encourage assimilation and their need to be changes made to the infrastructure – but these things will not go away by resorting to all the usual rhetoric or ven by closing our borders, even if we could do so.

    I don’t believe we are changing into a Muslim country – if anything I believe that we are as a whole becoming less attached to religion and more secular (and in my view that is a good thing)

    There is of course just a complete ostrich in the sand attitude to dealing with the root cause of the problem – which is why should people want to move in the first place. Not our problem just is not an appropriate response.

  96. Immigration: Romania and Bulgaria
    Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department
    2:30 pm 2 December 2013

    Illegal Immigrants (Criminal Sanctions) Bill
    1:04 pm
    17 Jan 2014
    Second Reading

  97. Anon, I have lived in Bradford, in the areas with a high proportion of population of Asian origin and/or descent. There is a noticeable difference between the actual immigrant population and their descendants who grew up in the UK. You might call these descendants ‘Muslims’, but only in the same way that someone in another country might refer to me as ‘Christian’, when in fact I’m an atheist.

  98. ESLO, 6:30 pm

    “There is of course just a complete ostrich in the sand attitude to dealing with the root cause of the problem – which is why should people want to move in the first place.”

    I note that the papers that stress the ‘risks’ of immigration are the very same media outlets that go on about how important it is to keep the UK currency ‘strong’. They never mention that higher currency value promotes immigration.

  99. Utter, utter crap, Clark. A noticeable difference? You are having a laugh, right? Sure, many of these Bradfordians may not be 5-a-day Muslims, but do they integrate in any meaningful way with the non-Muslim population?

  100. We need some honest answers here: do those who support mass-immigration actually have any arguments to offer in favour? Or is it that they are merely opposing what they perceive to be “Little Englander” racism against foreigners?

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