Saturday, September 01, 2007

"The immigrant trickle that became a flood"

Graham Stewart in the Times :

A century hence, what will historians consider the most significant social change to Britain during the Blair years? Quite possibly they will conclude it was how immigration transformed the country. One in four children born in Britain last year had a foreign parent. This changing ethnicity has been further accentuated by a growing flight of British citizens, almost 200,000 of whom emigrated last year.

From a historical perspective, the emigration of this many native Britons is not so remarkable. Paradoxically, the greater Victorian Britain became, the more its workforce sought opportunities abroad — not just in the empire but also in the United States.

By contrast, today’s rate of immigration is producing the most significant change in the national make-up in 900 years. Indeed, it is noteworthy how relatively small waves of immigration nonetheless perturbed the natives. To his eternal shame, Edward I expelled England’s Jews even although they numbered much more than 5,000 very useful subjects. By the mid-15th century there were perhaps fewer than 16,000 foreigners living among England’s 2.5 million inhabitants.

And it is unclear why Elizabeth I felt the need to complain about there being “of late divers blackmoores brought into this realme, of which kinde of people there are already here to manie”. Even when their numbers peaked in 1770, it is estimated that there were only 14,000 black people, or 0.2 per cent of the population. In the first decades of the 20th century, the entire nonwhite population of Britain may not have greatly exceeded 10,000.

As for asylum-seekers, they hardly swamped England. About 50,000 French Huguenots fleeing Louis XIV’s crackdown on Protestantism settled and formed a distinct community in East London. However, they were only about 0.7 per cent of the population in 1700. A similar influx did not follow until the end of the 19th century when about 120,000 Jews fled Tsarist persecution. About 70,000 sought refuge from Nazi Germany in the 1930s. Again, this represented a fraction of 1 per cent of the national population.

In between, there had been a big mid-19th-century flow of Irish to the mainland, but this was a population shift within the UK. There were also modest increases in the number of Europeans seeking work here. But the proportion of German and Italian-born residents in Britain in 1911 still comprised less than 0.2 per cent of the population.

Eastern European migrants filled skill shortages after the Second World War and “mass” Commonwealth immigration took hold in the 1950s. But even these changes are dwarfed by the inflow of the past decade, with official net immigration running at about 300,000 a year. In historical terms, it is quite an experiment.


I'm sure this will turn out to be Blair's great legacy, although he only accelerated an existing trend.

9 comments:

Observer said...

One in four children born in Britain last year had a foreign parent.

NO ! One in four had a parent with a foreign passport.....but the NHS collates data by Ethnicity so it could tell us exactly what proportion of Babies were born as: Non-White....it could even break it down by Ethnicity whether those parents hold British Passports or Indefinite Leave to Remain.......don't forget 5 years on a UK Work Visa qualifies for British Citizenship

I believe over 1 million have taken out British Citizenship in the Blair years....if each has a family of 0.5 children that is 500,000 over the decade....geometric progressions are fun

Anonymous said...

"Even when their numbers peaked in 1770, it is estimated that there were only 14,000 black people, or 0.2 per cent of the population"

From where does this number come?

Who was keeping count in those days?

Anonymous said...

"5,000 useful citizens" Sounds good doesnt it but at what point does that slip into genocide?

Why not just replace 60 million Brits with 60 million more useful citizens? Im sure we could arrange that they were all better qualified, harder working etc. Lets start by replacing Graham Stewart, his parents, children, family & collegues. Any complaints Graham. No? Good.

Whats the result. Still called Britain but in fact a different entity entirely. Still, as long as the name over the door remains the same eh Graham.

So Graham why dont we make this more personal. Lets move a family of foreigners into your spare room. No complaints there I hope, they are now useful members of your family. I hope you have no complaint about how they arent related to you or you didnt invite them, piffling details. Youve got to put that old fashioned racist thinking behind you. Just keep reminding yourself how they are useful they are because as we all know thats all that matters.

Dave said...

Blair's legacy will be WW3, and I don't say that hoping for it as some people such as those from MR do.
WW3 will be brought on by the war on Islamic terror in combination with out of control immigration destabilizing the Western world.
Blair badly mismanaged both.


Go on then observer what do you reckon the true numbers are?

Anonymous said...

Most of these foreigners are within living memory of their own homelands. Even their offspring born here - the Subcon youth - know where to abscond to when escaping British justice. The ties to the homeland are very strong.

They came here in 30 years with the majority within the last 10 years, it will be no great hardship for them to leave.

verity said...

Dave says: "Islamic terror in combination with out of control immigration destabilizing the Western world.
Blair badly mismanaged both."

No. Blair actively encouraged both. Islamic terrorism to cow the British and, having made self-defence illegal, make them more dependent on the state for their protection, and massive immigration because when Blair sings The Internationale, he really means it. He and Cherie are malign, destructive one-worlders. They seem to hate Britain and British history and sought to weaken it.

Anonymous said...

Also from the Times, talking about Cameron's recent Newsnight appearance:

Others in the party say this is the wrong time to focus on immigration, even though surveys show that it is an issue of concern to many voters. One senior strategist said: “Immigration is not going to win you an election. It didn’t last time, although it is a huge problem.

“There are so many immigrants here that they won’t vote for it and, second, people are ashamed to admit it as they think that being ant-iimmigration is the same as being racist, even though it isn’t.”

Anonymous said...

Forgot to give a link for the last comment.

Susan said...

What chance have you in England for something like a tax strike? This is what Americans are talking about, as a last-ditch strategy to stop the tidal wave of Third World immigration.