Think-Tank Migrationwatch UK (who are god-damn racist-ass mother-fuckers) have released a report claiming that regularising a single illegal immigrant would ‘cost the taxpayer’ one million pounds.
This is then being used to argue that the one-off earned amnesty being proposed by the Strangers Into Citizens campaign would be “adding an unacceptable – and entirely unnecessary – burden to the nation’s balance sheet”, and “a shocking waste of public money at a time when we can least afford it”.
There’s a lot of unpacking to do here. A few points:
First off, a one-off amnesty for a few people is not something I support, it is merely one proposal about how to make the border control system work best.
Secondly, this is £1M over a 50-year or so period, which is a deliberate attempt to inflate the numbers and make it harder to compare with other sums.
Thirdly, Migrationwatch UK are not a source I trust for unbiased estimates.
Fourthly, and most importantly, this calculation is concerned only with immigrants as taxpayers and as recipients of benefits. It ignores the crucial fact that when they work in the minimum wage jobs that they are assumed to work in, they are producing value through their labour, more value than they receive in wages.
What this report says is essentially the following: very poor people do not make a net contribution to tax revenues. No shit. That’s rather the point of progressive and redistributive taxation.
What this report neglects to mention is the following: poor people are poor because they are exploited, i.e. their labour props up a system of accumulation in which wealth is appropriated by those at the top.
Now ignoring that is of course a reasonable thing for this report to do, because most of these immigrants will be working in jobs of one kind or another whether they have legal status or not. They just won’t be eligible for any benefits or labour protection laws – i.e. they will be even more thoroughly exploited.
Fifthly, and relatedly, the report neglects the fact that it is simply impossible to make there not be illegal immigrants. At least without a police state and massive violence and civil unrest. Only under the BNP will that be an option. Short of fascism, the alternative to regularisation is for these people to keep living in the country in legal limbo, unrecognised as persons before the law.
Now I don’t know if Migrationwatch endorses the BNP option or the limbo-slave-population option. Let’s suppose they want the latter, more mainstream policy. Then they are arguing, in essence, that we should refrain from giving one layer of our working class any legal protection or social support, in order to save money.
This is a very good policy for the ruling class. It’s a good policy for business, which is why business organisations tend to be in favour of ‘managed migration’. But it is a disgusting policy from a moral point of view.
Sixthly, moreover, it is not a good policy for the working class. ‘An injury to one is an injury to all’ is not just an idealistic expression of principle, it expresses a factual relationship. Having unprotected, easily abusable illegal labourers available allows businesses to drive down wages for other workers.
The interests of the ‘native British working class’ (insofar as such a group can be delimited) would be served either by full regularisation and unionisation of all migrants as partners in struggle, or for there to not be any migration so that the issue doesn’t arise (and hope that the NHS doesn’t run out of nurses or anything). Acheiving the latter would require fascism, which is radically against the interests of the working class.
Seventhly, several statements in the linked-to article are nauseating. First of all, to say that it is a ‘waste’ of money to provide benefits to people on the minimum wage; secondly, to suggest that regularisation and social support and protection for the worst off is ‘entirely unnecessary’; thirdly, to say that it’s ‘wrong in principle to reward illegal behaviour’.
This last I might forgive if the person saying it had been born to homeless parents in Somalia and had found it perfectly easy to struggle their way out of grinding poverty through purely legal means. Instead it comes from Andrew Green, private-school educated, Cambridge-graduate, former-British-ambassador. So he can go fuck right off.