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Another quandary for Mr Johnson, this time in Cantonese

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suze
1349707.  Wed Jun 03, 2020 8:44 am Reply with quote

Do you remember the EU referendum campaign? If you have any sense you've tried to forget it, but one of the slogans oft used by the Leave campaign was that "Britain is full".

All these foreign people come over here, take all our jobs and at the same time claim all our benefits, shag our women, drink our beer, and so on. You've heard it all one thousand times - and Conservative Prime Ministers from Cameron onwards have done nothing to dispel that rhetoric. Rather, they've gone the other way by introducing a supposed cap on numbers of immigrants, by introducing the "hostile environment", by resorting to dubious tactics to try to expel Carribean immigrants of the Windrush generation. (Yes, I know the government tried to deny that, but no one seriously believed it.)

For a dozen reasons there are no very accurate figures on just how many people from EU countries (exc Ireland) live in the UK, but it's generally reckoned to be between 3 and 4 million. Far too many, the Farages would tell you. Some others would also say far too many, but would caveat that with "But at least most of them are white".

Now move forward to 2020, and China's apparent intention to end the special status of Hong Kong. Mr Johnson confirmed yesterday that if that does happen, then all those in Hong Kong who have British National (Overseas) passports will be allowed to come to Britain. No one really knows just how many people that is, because most in Hong Kong who would be entitled to that passport don't actually hold it. It has to be assumed that quite a lot of those people will decide that it's worth actually holding it if it carries the right to come to Britain. Best estimate is that the number of people involved is between 3 and 4 million.

But hold on just one moment, Britain is "full". We don't need that number of foreign people coming over here, taking all our jobs and at the same time claiming all our benefits, shagging our women, drinking our beer, and so on. Worse yet, most of them aren't white. Worse still, most of them are of Chinese ethnicity. You know, that lot who inflicted the pesky virus on us, that lot whose existing representation in Britain are currently getting bricks through their windows and feces through the mail.

Mr Johnson's pronouncement that "Britain could not in good conscience shrug our shoulders and walk away" is in many ways laudable. But won't it be an extremely hard sell to Daily Mail Britain?

 
crissdee
1349710.  Wed Jun 03, 2020 9:08 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
.....take all our jobs and at the same time claim all our benefits.....


In fairness, this is not completely impossible. There will be a (probably tiny) minority who will find work of the cash in hand variety, and still claim benefits. For that matter, there are certain benefits that one can claim when one is in legitimate employment.

All the rest is, of course, racist bullcrap as you say.

 
PDR
1349715.  Wed Jun 03, 2020 11:19 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
take all our jobs and at the same time claim all our benefits, shag our women,


If there are than many of them the benefit rates will have to go down so surely that should be "claim all our woman and shag our benefits"

PDR

 
bobwilson
1349749.  Wed Jun 03, 2020 5:26 pm Reply with quote

Hmm - suze's post is almost - no, can't say that - it'd be a tad too far.

Can I just point out that the first part of the post implies that those who're opposed to immigration tend towards the racist end of the spectrum. In fact, implies is perhaps to short-change the message - it is the central point of that part of the post.

The second part of the post points out that the aforementioned opponents of immigration are behaving in a most unracist manner - and predicts(?) a wave of protest from the usual suspects.

Be interesting to see how this plays out - I'm thinking some core assumptions might need to be abandoned here.

 
suze
1349767.  Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:18 pm Reply with quote

Hi bob. I can understand why you might consider my little essay as racist, but you stopped short of actually saying that and I don't believe that it is.

Whether Prime Minister Johnson is "a racist" is not a question which admits of a simple answer. Some of his past utterances have led people to make that accusation, is really as far as we can go.

Bearing in mind previous pronouncements of Conservative governments since that party came to power to 2010, it absolutely does have to be seen as an anti-immigration party. Cameron banged on about his immigration target so often that no one even listened any more.

You were around for the EU referendum campaign, and xenophobia absolutely was a large part of the Leave campaign. Now for sure, Nigel Farage was at pains to say that he was keen to import people from the Commonwealth (an organisation of which Hong Kong is not a member, incidentally) instead of all those funny foreign Europeans - but the likes of Stephen Yaxley-Lennon are rather less keen on importing people who aren't white.

Whether the Daily Mail wil actually oppose the idea under discussion I don't know; it may be advised by its lawyers that it had better not. But a lot - possibly even most - of its readers absolutely will do, and will be permitted to say so on comments pages.

We'll see about those core assumptions, but I am not as optimistic as you seem to be that 3-4 million persons of Chinese heritage would be welcomed with open arms by the existing population of the UK. I don't actually know the owner of the Chinese take away near my home which had bricks through the windows twice in a week when the pesky virus thing began, but he is probably from Hong Kong. Most Chinese people in the UK are.

 
CB27
1349865.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:05 am Reply with quote

Racism, xenophobia, Brexit, and Buffoon Johnson aside, there's a question here that should be asked, and that is:

Why are we encouraging people to migrate?

As an immigrant myself, I'm very aware that there are two main camps of immigrants in all countries. The first (which I belong to) are people who moved as a choice, either because of family, work, or feeling a connection to somewhere else, etc. The other camp are people who felt they had to leave their former home and find somewhere better either because of oppression, or lack of opportunity for themselves and\or their children. I don't mean people who are counted as refugees, because these are people who have a direct threat to their lives and security, I'm talking about people who are simply moving because anything is better than where they are, and I class these as people who are effectively being forced to migrate.

However, why should people be forced to move if that's not their wish?

People complain about ending the special status of Hong Kong, but shouldn't they actually be complaining why that status was special, and why the rest of China not have been afforded similar freedoms?

Shouldn't they be complaining about selling weapons to authoritarian regimes, warlords and criminal organisations, that create such conflict and poverty that people are formed to migrate?

Shouldn't they be complaining about trade deals that favour some countries while condemning other countries to poverty?

The idea that people migrate to another country, leaving so much behind, just so they could survive on welfare, is a joke.

So there are plenty of reasons to question why we should encourage migration as an escape from places where life is harsh, but any anger should be aimed at the regimes forcing them to make that choice, and our own (and other nations) for not doing enough to help.

 
dr.bob
1349874.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 10:39 am Reply with quote

CB27 wrote:
but any anger should be aimed at the regimes forcing them to make that choice, and our own (and other nations) for not doing enough to help.


I largely agree with your point, but surely there's a limit to how much a foreign country can do to help. You mentioned that they should complain that the rest of China wasn't granted freedoms similar to Hong Kong. How much sway would the UK have to force China to change its entire system of government?

Does there not sometimes come a point where pragmatism must overcome idealism and we end up offering people British passports rather than trying to overthrow a foreign power?

 
suze
1349876.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 11:17 am Reply with quote

dr.bob wrote:
I largely agree with your point, but surely there's a limit to how much a foreign country can do to help. You mentioned that they should complain that the rest of China wasn't granted freedoms similar to Hong Kong. How much sway would the UK have to force China to change its entire system of government?


Playing Devil's Advocate, bombing China back to the Stone Age would probably lead to a change in its system of government. I'm not sure that D Trump would need too much persuading either.

While I don't know that the Daily Mail reading public would be on board with that idea, suppose that organ ran a poll. "Do you agree that the pesky virus is China's fault and that China should be punished for it?" would get a very high Yes vote (considerably more than the 52% which is apparently the biggest winning margin in the history of the Universe), before we even consider the Hong Kong question.

On the Hong Kong question, HSBC has chosen to support the Chinese government. That has led Jacob Rees-Mogg to suggest that the company is "more closely aligned to the Chinese government than Her Majesty's Government", and has led Iain Duncan Smith to note that "other banks are available" and to suggest that HSBC customers use them.

 
barbados
1349877.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 11:25 am Reply with quote

Quote:
While I don't know that the Daily Mail reading public would be on board with that idea, suppose that organ ran a poll. "Do you agree that the pesky virus is China's fault and that China should be punished for it?" would get a very high Yes vote (considerably more than the 52% which is apparently the biggest winning margin in the history of the Universe), before we even consider the Hong Kong question.

I'd guess the figure would be approximately 56%

 
bobwilson
1349910.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 5:22 pm Reply with quote

Apropos CB's post

I was astonished to read that Maine's population is some 1.3 million people - in an area that is 1/3rd the size of the UK.

Seems to be plenty of room there?

 
suze
1349916.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 5:59 pm Reply with quote

barbados wrote:
I'd guess the figure would be approximately 56%


That is a remarkably specific guess! All the same, it might be a pretty good guess, if a bit lower than I was thinking.

Or does the remarkably specific guess come from a poll which has in fact been done while I wasn't looking?

 
PDR
1349919.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:11 pm Reply with quote

dr.bob wrote:

I largely agree with your point, but surely there's a limit to how much a foreign country can do to help. You mentioned that they should complain that the rest of China wasn't granted freedoms similar to Hong Kong. How much sway would the UK have to force China to change its entire system of government?


Playing Devil's Junior Counsel - would that not be one nation imposing its values and beliefs on another? Is that a moral thing to do, or do they have any right to develop and determine their own life choices?

Admittedly this argument struggles a bit when the "victim" is an authoritarian regime, but that just says the chinese people should have the right to choose. They don't *have* to choose our political system if they don't want to.

PDR

 
suze
1349922.  Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:22 pm Reply with quote

PDR wrote:
Admittedly this argument struggles a bit when the "victim" is an authoritarian regime, but that just says the chinese people should have the right to choose. They don't *have* to choose our political system if they don't want to.


Were they ever actually asked?

Now, I know that authoritarian regimes have on occasion been elected, and a couple of those elections weren't even fixed. But they are the exception to the rule, and most authoritarian regimes came to power either by force of arms or by being born to it.

There is an argument which says that it is impossible for a country with such a vast population as China has to be a democracy. Proponents of that argument usually point to China, or to Russia which did briefly try being a democracy and didn't really like it.

Of the other countries with vast populations, the likes of Brazil, Indonesia, and Pakistan alternate between being democracies of a sort and absolutely not being. Let's ignore the United States of America because Americans get cross if they are told that their country isn't a democracy, but how about India?

No one would claim that India is as democratic a nation as Norway or even the UK, and it does have a massive problem with corruption - but elections there are more or less honest, and they haven't had a military coup since independence. If India can, anywhere can.

 
barbados
1349927.  Sat Jun 06, 2020 2:10 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
barbados wrote:
I'd guess the figure would be approximately 56%


That is a remarkably specific guess! All the same, it might be a pretty good guess, if a bit lower than I was thinking.

Or does the remarkably specific guess come from a poll which has in fact been done while I wasn't looking?

Ok, you got me. It was a poll that took place in April ;)
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8229651/Britons-believe-China-blame-coronavirus-outbreak-poll-finds.html

 
Awitt
1349928.  Sat Jun 06, 2020 3:09 am Reply with quote

bobwilson wrote:
Apropos CB's post

I was astonished to read that Maine's population is some 1.3 million people - in an area that is 1/3rd the size of the UK.

Seems to be plenty of room there?


While I don't know much about the landscape of Maine, it's the same as overseas people pointing the finger at Australia and saying 'such a big country, you can fit more (people/residents) in?'

Except that a large part of the central area is sandy desert, largely uninhabited and uninhabitable.
And the towns that are there have to live through years of droughts and other things.
I often wonder if some of those in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria were actually settled when there might have been a year or two of good rainfall, but it's largely drought most the time.

From our Bureau of Statistics:
Quote:
Did you know more than 90% of our population lives within 100km of the coast making us one of the world’s most urbanised coastal dwelling populations?

 

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