A few weeks ago I was on a anti-war panel with the socialist film director Ken Loach. Ken made the point that the large scale influx of low-wage labour was a key part of the neoliberal/neoconservative globalist agenda, designed to reduce wage rates and boost corporate profits. He's absolutely right. The House of Lords report on the economic impact of mass immigration to Britain finds, surprise, surprise, that immigration has indeed had a negative impact on the wages of the lowest paid (while equally unsurprisingly delivering an increase in the wages of the highest paid). The report concludes that large-scale immigration has had no net economic benefit for the people of Britain. But, it has of course, benefited greatly the rich, big business and global capital. The report is as big a blow to the neo-liberal/neo-con cause as was last autumn's US Joint Security agencies report that there was no evidence that Iran was developing nuclear weapons.
The serial globalists haven't taken long in their attempt to rubbish the House of Lords findings. On the Guardian's Comment is Free website, the fanatically neoliberal Philippe Legrain, while parroting Norman Tebbit's 'on your bike' philosophy' in his arguments about the benefits of an ultra-'flexible' and 'adaptable' labour force, tries to portray the report as the work of old fuddy-duddy Tories. Yet if anyone comes to this debate with an agenda, it's Legrain.
Legrain's Guardian profile informs us that he has worked for The Economist magazine and was a 'special advisor' to the director of the World Trade Organisation. He was also a director of the pro-EU, pro Euro pressure group 'Britain in Europe'. His book, 'Immigrants: Your Country Needs Them' has been shortlisted for that well-known left-wing literary prize, the Financial Times Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year award. Legrain like all of his globalist ilk is also a fanatical Russophobe.
On his website he writes:
My old friend Edward Lucas has written an excellent call to arms, The New Cold War, about the dangers to the West and Russia itself of the country's fascist turn under Putin.
In today's news, consider the divisions over whether NATO should grant Ukraine and Georgia "membership action plans" that would open the door to their eventual membership. Russia aggressively objects. While there is a reasonable debate to be had about whether Ukraine and Georgia should be admitted to NATO - personally, I think they should - Russia should not be given a veto over what its neighbours and NATO do. Appeasing Russia for the sake of NATO "unity" would be shameful and unwise.
I've mentioned Legrain's background- and his views on Russia and NATO expansion as I think it's important to highlight the agenda of those who advocate uncontrolled immigration. For too long sections of the left have supported an open door immigration policy, without realising that in doing so they were playing right into the hands of socialism's biggest enemies.
If fanatical, pro-big business globalists like Philippe Legrain want mass immigration- it must by definition, be a bad thing.
UPDATE: Philip Blond has more on New Labour's pro-big business immigration policy here.