You’ve got to feel sorry for migrants. Not only are they under attack from the media and politicians of all stripes, but some have even had to share a train carriage with the odious Nigel Farage.
Farage, leader of the hard right Ukip, described the incident at his party’s conference last weekend.
“It was rush hour, from Charing Cross,” he said. “We stopped at London Bridge, New Cross, Hither Green. It wasn’t until after we got past Grove Park that I could actually hear English being audibly spoken in the carriage.”
It isn’t clear why this is a problem. Nor is it clear whether it’s actually true.
A Radio 4 presenter took the same journey and couldn’t find a single person who couldn’t speak English.
But it’s a tired old way of demonising migrants by claiming they “won’t integrate” with people born in Britain.
Farage said that migrants have made parts of Britain “unrecognisable”. He claimed that it was “very important” for migrants to integrate. It’s laughable from a man who in reality wants migrants out of Britain.
His real agenda quickly became clear. He said the government should be able to restrict immigration based on the “quality and quantity” of migrants, whatever that means.
And Ukip’s election slogan “Love Britain, vote Ukip” is borrowed from the Nazi British National Party’s, “Love Britain, vote BNP”.
But there was one glimmer of light in Farage’s speech. He said he might resign if Ukip fails to win any seats in next year’s general election.
Sometimes even speaking English isn’t good enough for Ukip. Ukip’s Sean Howlett told an undercover Daily Mirror journalist that it isn’t possible to talk to people in east London because of their accents. “You won’t understand what they’re saying,” he claimed.
Ukip is a rabidly anti-immigration party—and no friend of workers
The arrest of Joaquin Guzman, leader of a Mexican drug cartel, was a chance for the authorities to hail a victory in the “war on drugs”.
But for some it was also a chance to highlight the relative power of bosses and workers.
A former senior Drug Enforcement Administration official said the arrest would have “no effect” on drug trafficking.
“If you are making a car and suddenly 15 people on the production line die, it is going to take a while to train new people,” they said.
“But if the CEO dies, it is actually no big deal—the machine is going to continue.”
Meanwhile Tory foreign secretary William Hague was given the Hillary Rodham Clinton Award for Advancing Women in Peace and Security. It’s not clear exactly how many women have to die in wars and occupations you support before you get an award.
Tory cuts will damage our health. But fortunately for them, we may never know by how much. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has said it can no longer afford to record 15 sets of data because of budget cuts.
These include trends in inequality in life expectancy at birth and information on deaths due to infections acquired in hospitals. The ONS faces cuts of £9 million over the next two years.
Government advisor Peter Brant has hit on the way for working class children to get ahead—act posh. Brant said poorer children are less likely to apply to top universities because they lack confidence. Apparently if they dress differently, watch some plays and go to restaurants they could overcome the class divide. Brant said this is why people can’t find jobs. Not that the jobs aren’t there to find, then.
KNOW YOUR ENEMY No. 271
A division of “fit for work” test firm Atos Healthcare
ExxonMobil boss Rex Tillerson and his rich neighbours are suing to stop the building of a water tower near his 83 acre Texas home. The tower is to store water for fracking.
Tillerson’s lawsuit says the tower would “devalue” property and create “a noise nuisance and traffic hazards”. Tillerson is a strong supporter of fracking—as long as someone else has to suffer the consequences of it.
A Tory farming minister has said benefit claimants should be made to pick fruit and vegetables. George Eustice said, “We shouldn’t really tolerate that attitude that says we are going to pay people to stay on benefits because they don’t want to do certain types of farming work.” Coincidentally his family runs a strawberry farm in Cornwall.
Wages for full time workers in real terms are the same as they were in 2002, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). This is because wages fell every year between 2008 and 2013. Luckily the Low Pay Commission has recommended that the minimum wage goes up—to a whopping £6.50 an hour from October.
Atos the disgraced firm has been given the contract to extract patient records from GP surgeries
Patients can perhaps now look forward to the same stellar treatment from Atos as disabled claimants
State deaths quads in Derry, Phillip Green still trousering cash
The Troublemaker looks at the news of the week