Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Immigration and The Daily Mail - Hypocrisy in Action

Lots of 'scary' headlines about the latest immigration figures in the national press. The Times took a suitably alarmist stance:

A record number of foreigners were granted British citizenship last year, according to Home Office figures published today.

Just over 164,600 people were given citizenship —- the highest number of applications granted in any year.

The seven per cent increase in persons given citizenship followed a fall in the previous year.

Since 1997 when Labour came to power almost 2 million people have been awarded citizenship, the figures show.

An estimated 591,000 people entered the country, ten per cent up on the previous year, meaning net migration into the country was about 190,000. The overwhelming majority —- 86 per cent —- of immigrants were non British citizens.

“This continued the trend of high immigration to the UK experienced since 1998,” said the Office for National Statistics which published the International Migration figures

Mmm, scared yet? How about this (watch out for the meaningless statistic):

The number of migrants granted UK citizenship reached an all-time record last year as separate figures revealed more than 200,000 Britons moving abroad.

A raft of statistics released by Whitehall revealed 164,635 foreign nationals were granted UK passports in 2007 - the equivalent of one every three minutes.

The figure is up seven per cent on the previous year and takes the total since Labour came to power to almost 1.2m.

Did you spot it? Incidentally, that last extract is repeated in the Daily Mail. And the good old Express? Why, they are suggesting the figures aren't reliable and are actually much higher:

MINISTERS have no idea how many immigrants are coming to Britain, according to a damning report by MPs.

The official statistics are “totally inadequate” for grasping the scale of population changes, the Parlia-mentary investigation has concluded.

As a result, public services are in danger of collapsing because the lack of reliable data means the Government is incapable of planning ahead.

None of these papers really touch on why there is a rise in immigration (the Daily Mail doesn't even mention where they are from). After all, that would mean treating readers like intelligent individuals instead of mindless zombies. According to the National Statistics website the majority of asylum seekers come from: Afghanistan, Iraq, Zimbabwe, Iran and Eritrea. Notice any connection there? Two countries have been devastated as a result of our military adventures. These two countries have become increasingly dangerous as a result of our interference. Consequently, it seems quite right and proper that as we fucked their countries, they should come here to enjoy the freedom and democracy we have failed to deliver over there. If we bomb the shit out of their utilities and make their daily lives almost impossible, who can blame them for coming here?

As for the others, presumably the mainstream media are suggesting we send back asylum seekers from Zimbabwe? Despite the fact that the very same media outlets have been exposing how dangerous life is in Zimbabwe. So what is it to be, eh? Help the people of Zimbabwe, or turn our backs on them? It wasn't so long ago that the Daily Mail ran a headline screaming:

Don't Zimbabweans have human rights?

Make up your minds chaps. Either you want the people of Zimbabwe to have asylum here, or you do not. Which is it going to be? Just how deep is your concern for the people of Zimbabwe? Is it simply political opportunism? Fear-mongering? Or a genuine desire to protect their human rights? I think we know the answer.