Last year 700,000 people came to Britain for the first time: penniless, helpless, not speaking the language, having contributed nothing in tax and expecting nevertheless to suckle at the teat of the British state, among other teats, indefinitely. The number who left was only 500,000 — a net inward migration of 200,000, and trends show that figure rising year on year.
“Babies”, we call them. There are no border controls for these immigrants, no one-out-one-in policy, no visas and — forget the bogus language schools — any UK citizen is entitled to invite as many to this country as he or she fancies without the barest checks on his or her ability or willingness to support them or to stand surety for their behaviour.
They arrive here without documents and are required to show no means of support. Far from trying to keep them out or reduce their numbers, a vast state-maintained apparatus exists to help them across the border — and an expensive bureaucracy exists to supply them with papers, free medical care and support them in every way. They routinely jump the queue at the GP, and their advocates are voluble and entitled.
Once they are here, do they integrate? Not hardly. Many public spaces have become, as the phrase has it, no-go areas. Otherwise civilised cafés echo with their barbaric and incomprehensible babbling; fenced-off areas of public parks are reserved for them and entry is forbidden to anyone not of their kind or accompanied by one. Crouch End and Muswell Hill are positively infested. Give one so much as a dirty look in public and you can expect trouble.
They will spend nearly two decades swinging the lead, until they join the productive sector of the economy. When they eventually do — if they do — the jobs they take will be low-paid, depressing wages across the board and putting experienced native workers out of employment.
And yet do you see any mainstream politicians saying: no more; we are swamped; this country is full up? You do not. When talk turns to this sort of immigrant, even supposedly hard-headed realists — it’s not about us and them; it’s the numbers — wax sentimental. Tough guys who’d like to turn Lithuanian fruit-pickers, Algerian plumbers and refugees from bloody sectarian wars away at the point of a gun become positively gooey.
In fact, as part of the mainstream media’s propaganda machine the bien-pensants at Channel 4 have made several series of a programme dedicated to celebrating their arrival in the country, complete with high production values and tear-jerking music. One Born Every Minute? I’ll say.
Every mainstream party urges some version of a quota system to limit the number of living human beings — with the full panoply of hopes, fears, vulnerabilities and potential — who can come here from failed or struggling states. Yet every mainstream political party is committed to offering limitless places to refugees from the benign and infinitely populous state of non-existence. It’s almost as if we find it easier to love the idea of our fellow man than the real thing.
I have a much better idea: let’s levy punitive taxes on people who insist on having children, and then spend the money giving food and shelter to Libyan boat people.