It must be the political equivalent of telling your mates you’ve got a killer funny joke then building up to a punch line that leaves everyone with a bemused look on their faces.
Poor Damian Green, “I’ve got something really, really important to say about immigration” – and so he should after two extensive consultations, with a load of policy currently being moulded into Immigration Rules for Parliament to discuss, only for Theresa May to tell him “you can’t tell them that – or that – or that….” you can almost picture the smug bully’s grin on the face of his Boss as he realises he’s basically had a big build up to a speech where he can’t say anything of substance.
He tried. “For the past decade the immigration debate in this country has been mainly about numbers”, that’s been the case for a darn sight more than a decade, Damian, Enoch had a few warnings about numbers back in the day… He claimed that immigration would no longer be just a numbers game, but about the quality of immigrants.
If that were true the Coalition Government would have to promptly drop their mantra of “cutting net immigration from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands” and given that a) the phrase has lots of numbers in it and b) it is the hook upon which all immigration policy is hung by the Coalition Government, it’s going to be hard to wiggle out of that one.
Never mind, Damian tried a sound bite for the media – they love one of those! “The Brightest and the Best” is what he came up with. But when you stop to think about who this means – alarm bells should start to ring. Unsurprisingly, the yardstick used to judge who is the ‘best’ is income. Former-Sir Fred Goodwin ‘best’, hardworking nurse therefore ‘worst’? Does it seem to you that the government’s formulation of wealth equalling good is a tad out of step with the zeitgeist of today? Or is it just me?
The ‘new‘ selective immigration regime was today unveiled – just 4 short years after the Points Based System was introduced – the PBS being erm… a selective system for immigration management designed to bring in – the ‘best’ and the ‘brightest’.
“We have talked in the past about a Points Based System. In the future it will be more accurate to talk about a contribution-based system.” was another golden Green nugget served up this morning. The government are so keen on making sure every immigrant contributes to the UK, perhaps they’ll revive the 1970s idea of Pools collectors who could knock on the door of each immigrant’s house on a Friday to collect their weekly contribution?
But what’s of most concern to us in the JCWI Nerve Centre is what is to come from Theresa May. Perhaps still smarting from the disgraceful cat speech and the resultant mauling she got, it promises to be nasty, to be heartless and to split up/keep families apart, pour hardship upon hardship for cross border couples and all for the want of a bigger pay packet.
The return of the ‘Nasty Party’? It never really went away.