The Windrush Scandal: Twisting the Knife for a Hopeless Government

I am not very often lost for words but the events that have transpired this week in the Windrush controversy have left me speechless. For the sake of a lost piece of paper many people who have lived in Britain since the 1940s and 1950s have lost their jobs and had their whole lives thrown into question.

As a libertarian, I rarely get the opportunity to jump on any sort of bandwagon. So you will forgive me for enthusiastically hopping aboard this one.  Obviously, this scandal is an utter disgrace. But the claim that Theresa May has created a ‘hostile environment’ for these long naturalised British citizens requires further analysis.

Radio 4 recently caused a stir because they decided to air Enoch Powell’s Rivers of Blood speech in full. I always knew about the speech but was never really aware of the enormous public support that Powell received after he was dismissed (in what must be one of the biggest acts of career suicide in modern British history).

People such as myself, who are in favour of more liberal border controls are in a tricky position here. The vast majority of the British public do not support this policy direction, and yet every year more migrants come to the UK. Year after year politicians promise to radically reduce migration but they fail. The reason they fail is that reducing immigration is for all practical purposes impossible.

Immigration makes economic and political sense. Not only does it bring valuable workers to Britain but it sends a positive message to the rest of the world. Furthermore, if Theresa May tried to limit the number of migrants to the ‘tens of thousands’ as she has said, chaos would ensue. The political benefit of actually sticking to her promise would be outweighed by images of families being turned away at airports and the imposition of some arbitrary selection process for foreign migrants.  The Windrush scandal is a clear signal of a system that is doomed to failure.

Time and time again the state has shown itself to be totally inept when it comes to immigration. Ultimately, it is not Theresa May’s fault that there is a hostile atmosphere to migration.  In this instance, that state has promised to do something that it is literally not able to do. This compounds the woes of a government with no real agenda. Theresa May’s premiership highlights one of the main problems with the conservative party, that it has no real ideology, no guiding principals. So in times like these when some kind of unifying principle would be useful, the government is left floundering.

The Windrush scandal is not over yet. There is more pain to come for the Conservatives.

 

  10 comments for “The Windrush Scandal: Twisting the Knife for a Hopeless Government

  1. Paul Marks
    Apr 19, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    The papers were destroyed in 2009 – under a Labour government.

    • Bill Thompson
      Apr 20, 2018 at 4:58 am

      They were destroyed in 2010, a general election year. I’ve not seen a more precise date given anywhere. So, it’s not clear under which Home Secretary it took place.

  2. Bill Thompson
    Apr 20, 2018 at 10:00 am

    I agree with the critique of this government as having “no real ideology, no guiding principals”, at least none that could accurately be described as conservative.

    “Immigration makes economic and political sense.”

    Economically, only in a broad sense. Politically, it can be argued either way. The issue is never immigration, but rather how much immigration and from where? To say immigration is good is rather like saying rain is good. It means very little if it is not quantified and contextualised.

    No doubt, improvements to the Home Office’s system for managing immigration and no reduction in overall numbers cannot be made without effort, expense and risk of politically-costly blunders. However, this doesn’t mean it is impossible to make improvements that would be welcomed by large numbers of British people. As such, improving the immigration system makes political sense.

    Very few people want to stop all immigration. However, very many people are infuriated by the government’s failure to throw out of the country such people as dangerous foreign criminals and radical islamic trouble-makers living off welfare along with their enormous families. As to the latter, one may say that such people are few and far between and the press magnifies the issue. Of course, but when the government is shown to be useless in dealing with even the most egregiously unwanted foreigners, it indicates how much of an iceberg lies beneath.

    “The Windrush scandal is a clear signal of a system that is doomed to failure.”

    Not really. It was a stupid mistake, indicating a lack of accountability and openness in the Home Office, but it doesn’t have any bearing on the issue of immigration today, except for showing that the Home Office is barely fit for purpose.

    • Nico Metten
      Apr 20, 2018 at 11:22 pm

      Central planning never works, why would migration of people be any different? It is fascinating that people always complain about what a terrible job the government does, but they never grasp that this cannot be any different. Central planning always is organised chaos. On the only solution is to get the government out of centrally planning migration. The people on this Island, not the government, need to be in control of that, which means nothing else than to let the free market control it.

  3. Paul Marks
    Apr 21, 2018 at 7:09 am

    The papers were destroyed under a 2009 order under the Labour government.

    If anyone claims otherwise they must report the matter to the Speaker of the House of Commons – as the Prime Minister would have mislead the House in her answer during Prime Minister’s Question Time.

    If you are not prepared to report the matter to the Speaker of the House of Commons, then stop wasting my time.

  4. Paul Marks
    Apr 21, 2018 at 7:10 am

    Test.

  5. Paul Marks
    Apr 21, 2018 at 7:51 am

    As for immigration controls.

    People (population groups) have been protecting themselves against other people for thousands of years – no government had to order the people of (for example) what is now southern Italy or the Balkans to build defences for their villages against “immigrants”.

    If the government would get out of the way the British people would defend themselves against “immigrants” – but it would be a messy (violent) and disorderly process. Some newcomers were welcomed and some newcomers were driven away (by “burning out” and so on) in the past – that was the pattern of population groups (around the world) before modern government (bureaucratic) immigration controls.

    Population groups and cultures are not the invention of governments – they come from below. Indeed governments (Kings and other elite figures) tend to be a lot more cosmopolitan than ordinary populations tend to be.

    Although it is also true that people can “reinvent themselves” – with, for example, the Britons of Devon (still persecuted in the time of Athelstan – due to their alleged plotting with other enemies of the English in the alleged “grand conspiracy” of the Britons, the Irish and the Vikings, to wipe out the English – and there is some evidence that genocide was planned against the English “immigrants” who had been on this island for several centuries by then ) gradually reinvented themselves as English (whic their neighbours the Cornish did not). Genetically the people of Devon (the traditional people of Devon) are not “English” (Germanic), but culturally they made themselves so.

    People can do this when there is no obvious physical difference – they can adopt the language and customs of other people and become part of another people (a very difficult process – but certainly possible).

    Obviously when there is a clear physical difference (when one can tell just by looking that someone is from a different population group) the process of assimilation (of becoming part of “the people”) is much harder – although not impossible.

    One of the great tragedies of the modern period is the failure of the hopes of Booker T. Washington that black Americans would assimilate into American society (in spite of the legacy of slavery and so on). Things seemed to be going well till the 1960s – when there came a dramatic REJECTION of America by young radicals (who made it clear they hated America and did not want to be American – famously even giving Communist, so called “Black Power”, clinched fist salutes in the 1968 Games, when America was at war with the Communists in South East Asia and around the world).

    One tragic example sticks in my mind – the young boxer Cassius Clay in the early 1960s. He had been named (as members of his family had been for a long time) after the great fighter against slavery – Cassius Clay, a man who once survived an ambush by six slavers armed only with his bowie knife, and on another occasion cut the eyes out of a pro slavery man who had shot him – and Mr Clay also used privately owned artillery to protect his home from attack by pro slavery forces in Kentucky.

    The young boxer in the 1960s declared that “Cassius Clay” was the name of a “slave master” and a “slave name” (Mr Clay was not alive to kill the boxer for this insult) and that from now his name would be “Muhammed Ali” as this was a name of one of “our people” (a black man) who opposed slavery.

    In reality Muhammed (and Ali – who was a different person) was known as a very pale man (other Arabs knew which man Muhammed was in a group – because his paleness stood out) and, far from being opposed to slavery, Muhammed was a large scale slave trader – who especially despised black people (who he called “raisin heads” and claimed looked like Satan).

    It is hard to see how a population group that has been taught that Cassius Clay was pro slavery and that Muhammed was anti slavery can assimilate into America – or even why they would want to.

    As for Hispanics – many of them are taught that Americans “stole the land” in the wars of 1836 and 1848. Again this is NOT true (in reality Texas and California and so on were very thinly populated and what few Hispanics there were in these places in those days were NOT driven out, and certainly did not, mostly, want to live under the military dictatorship that Mexico then was) – but many of them believe it, and whilst they believe it, the chances of assimilation into American society are slim. Indeed why would they even want to be become Americans as they are taught (often in American state schools) to hate America and Americans.

    Assimilation (becoming part of the same nation – and nations, population groups, are not, normally, created by governments) is difficult when people look physically difficult – but it only becomes impossible when people are taught lies as the truth, and led to hate the nation they are in. Why should they even want to become part of a people they have been taught to hate? Why should they not seek revenge? And they do.

    • Julie near Chicago
      Apr 28, 2018 at 6:14 pm

      Paul. Excellent, especially as regards the boxer Clay/Ali. A much-needed corrective to the story so widely accepted.

      And above all, this:

      Things seemed to be going well till the 1960s – when there came a dramatic REJECTION of America by young radicals (who made it clear they hated America and did not want to be American – famously even giving Communist, so called “Black Power”, clinched fist salutes in the 1968 Games, when America was at war with the Communists in South East Asia and around the world).

      Thank you.

  6. Paul Marks
    Apr 21, 2018 at 7:55 am

    Ironically in 1849 came the creation of the “Department of the Interior” (which President Polk opposed – but tragically did not veto) which has gradually step-by-step led to the government domination of land ownership in the West (apart from in Texas) – the very thing that the American settlers fought the Mexican dictatorship to END in both the wars of 1836 and 1848 (the latter war also being caused by the expansionist aims of both the United States AND MEXICO – the latter being left out of modern leftist history texts).

  7. Paul Marks
    Apr 21, 2018 at 8:18 am

    Ironically 1849 was the year the Department of the Interior came into effect (President Polk had opposed it – but tragically did not veto it). This led over time step-by-step to government domination of the land in the West (apart from in Texas) , the very thing that American settlers had fought against in the wars of 1836 and 1848 – although the latter war was also caused by the expansionist aims of both the American and the MEXICAN governments (the latter being left out of leftist dominated history textbooks).

    Of course Hispanic activists call the American settlers an example of the harm that “immigrants” cause – but, I repeat, these areas were very thinly populated and such Hispanics as there were, were NOT driven out.

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