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Why are we so concerned about immigration?

Mark Easton | 14:00 UK time, Thursday, 3 February 2011

An international survey of eight European and North American countries finds that the British are easily the most hostile on the question of immigration and immigrants - even though five of the nations polled have a greater proportion of foreigners in their population.

According to the research commissioned by US and European think-tanks, people in the UK are much more likely to say there are "too many" immigrants than comparable nations. In Britain the figure is 59% compared to 27% in Germany and the Netherlands - both countries with a higher level of foreign-born residents.

British respondents to the survey by Transatlantic Trends [976KB PDF] are the most likely to say that immigrants, both legal and illegal, are a burden on social services. Two-thirds of Britons see immigration as "more of a problem than an opportunity" compared to around 50% in the US and mainland Europe.

Around a quarter of Brits don't think any migrant should be allowed to access the NHS (25%) or state schools (22%), even if they are here legally. In other European countries with significant immigrant populations, the figure ranges from 1% to 5%.

Chart showing access to state-sponsored health care
hart showing access to public schools

While eight out of 10 Brits don't think anyone here illegally should have access to state schools or healthcare, the rest of Europe appears far more generous. Most people surveyed on the Continent, around 60%, think those resident illegally should still get free health treatment and around half say they should be able to receive state education.

The international survey polled a minimum of 1,000 people in each of the eight countries. Among the organisations which funded the research are the German Marshall Fund of the United States and the Barrow Cadbury Trust in the UK.

The results suggest the British are more likely than anyone else to say that immigrants take jobs from native-born workers - 58% of us agree with that compared to an average of just 35% in the rest of Europe. Similarly, 52% of Britons believe that immigrants push down wages compared to an average of 44% among other European nations.

Our relative antipathy towards migrants is surprising given that British respondents are the most likely in Europe to say that immigrants are hard workers (77%). We are also more likely than the average European to believe that immigrants help to plug labour market gaps, with nearly three quarters supporting the idea that government should allow more foreign doctors and nurses into the UK and just over half of us saying more foreign care workers should be invited here to help look after the elderly.

The British are generally more likely than other Europeans to say that second-generation immigrants are integrating well and the most likely to complain that both legal and illegal immigrants are exploited in the workplace.

There is optimism, tolerance, even sympathy in these findings which seem at odds with the negativity and hostility exhibited elsewhere in the survey.

Part of the problem, perhaps, is that our national debate about immigration encourages us to think the level is much higher than it really is. Asked to estimate the proportion of foreign-born people living in the UK, the average guess is 29.4%. The true figure according to OECD data is 10.8%, lower than Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Canada and the USA. When informed of that, the proportion of British respondents thinking it was "too many" fell from 59% to 46% - although this is still much higher than France (16%) or Germany (20%). The average of EU nations polled is 29%.

Chart showing knowledge of immigrant population changes perception

It may be a consequence of our island-nation status: that moat around our borders encourages greater introspection. It may be a consequence of Empire: the sudden arrival of large numbers of "coloured Colonials", as they were described, in the post-war decades coincided with rapid and unsettling social change. It may be a consequence of a public and political debate about immigration which has often appeared duplicitous and dishonest.

This survey doesn't reveal a bigoted nation but rather a confused one. For 100 years, we have conducted our conversation about immigration in terms of "illegals", "bogus asylum-seekers" and "welfare scroungers" out to steal "British jobs from British workers". Since the Edict of Expulsion in 1290 which saw England's entire Jewish population deported, public debate about foreigners has always been more hysterical than objective.

And yet we are also, I think, a tolerant and broad-minded country in the main. Over centuries, we have experienced wave after wave of migrants and seen how the new arrivals have added something to our cultural tapestry. If we look back far enough, all of us will find elements of migrant stock.

None of the other countries surveyed gets close to the 23% of Britons who regard immigration as the most important issue facing the country today. The average is 10% among European nations, 9% in the US, 5% in Canada.

Why? Not because British race relations, public services or economic prospects are under any greater stress from foreign arrivals than other countries polled. Nor can it be simply population density - the Netherlands has many more people in each square mile than the UK. Rather I suspect it is because, for centuries, when we have heard the word "immigrant" we have tended to find ourselves thinking "threat".

Comments

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  • 1. At 3:09pm on 03 Feb 2011, Ernie wrote:

    Mark,

    You mention social upheaval in the post war years, do you not think this is ongoing?

    The British people don't hate immigrants, they just think there are enough for now.

    Genuine refugees should continue to have a place, and we should continue to respect our commitments to the EU, but there are a large number of questions that someone needs to answer -

    Why aren't more bogus asylum seekers shipped straight out?
    Why and (more importantly how) are refugees able to come here after having passed through other EU countries? Surely if they are running for their lives they stop at the first friendly port?
    Why aren't foreign nationals convicted of a crime serious enough to face jail time shipped out the moment the sentence is served?
    Why don't (or didn't we until recently) have skills and language requirements for residency?

    I'd also like to have seen Australia included in the study for comparison. As another prosperous island nation (on a much bigger island) they face many of the same issue, though have much, much tighter controls.


    Also I have a feeling that one of the reasons (and please stay with me here) is the prevalence Muslim immigrants. Some of the societal attitudes that they bring with them as concerns women and their rights are downright backwards.

    I know, I know, not all Muslim people are that way, not all muslim women are made to wear the veils, not all that do wear them are forced to, but there is an attitude of separatism, superiority and downright backwards relgious repression of females amongst some immigrant muslim populations. Not to mention that the sight of women swathed entirely in black robes, faces covered, looking for all the world like giant, waddling crows, is both intimidating and alienating for many British people.

    I'm not actually one of those people, I couldn't give a rat's back-end what people wear, but I've talked to a lot of others that find it downright objectionable.

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  • 2. At 3:20pm on 03 Feb 2011, mr beige wrote:

    interesting - yet the far right, politically speaking, have little support come election time compared to the french or the italians?

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  • 3. At 3:34pm on 03 Feb 2011, watriler wrote:

    You dont suppose it is anything to do with the gutter press constantly highlighting stories that complement their little Englander anti foreigner prejudices. The same approach which often overlaps with the immigration theme is the regular benefit scrounger scare stories. It is a good job those affected by this propaganda confine their response to complaining and not do something nasty about it.

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  • 4. At 3:50pm on 03 Feb 2011, Whistling Neil wrote:

    It may just reflect the lamentable state of education and poor standard of public debate which occurs in this country compared to many others.

    Scapegoating and fingerpointing at "others" as the source of all ills always tends to increase when economic times are hard especially when as a nation we have no direct recent experience of the society and government which results when such intolerance becomes the norm and the base instincts are let rip (and let us hope we never do).
    Our continental cousins have very much seen first hand the results and it is embedded in their collective memory and this informs debate there - based on facts and sober reflection.

    It probably had not occurred to the 20% who would refuse education access to any immigrant at all that this meant denying children an education which would damage their whole lives solely based on their parents choice.
    Nor probably had it occurred to them what they may really think when faced with decision over treating a dying child? Would they really want to check their immigration status before treatment even if they might die whilst waiting? Fortunately our health workers are not lacking in compassion, an increasingly large number of which would be denied treatment in the hospitals they work in by this group of patients.

    As Mark writes - these most likley reflect the lack of a sensible debate about this subject at the political level resulting in a vaccuum of reasoned voices in the public arena.

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  • 5. At 5:24pm on 03 Feb 2011, ratty wrote:

    Because the nature of our society is being changed by great numbers of immigrants who reject the fundamentals which underpin our nation. Politians and the "chatterarti" tell us that we're better off in a cosmopolitan society. Very many reject that view and resent bitterly the manner in which it is imposed, most particularly in the way in which free speech has been curtailed in its furtherance.

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  • 6. At 5:43pm on 03 Feb 2011, Ann Bulley wrote:

    Easton needs to do better research.
    This year England will have 402.1 people for every square kilometre, overtaking the figure of 398.5 in Holland and 355.2 in Belgium. These figures were given by the House of Commons library, which examined figures from the Office for National Statistics and the EU's Eurostat.
    The density of the population in England this year will be more than four times that of France, which has 99.4 for each square kilometre.
    The USA is virtually empty compared with the UK so it is stupid to compare England with the USA, Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy etc. It is because of this overcrowding that the population of the UK, primarily England, do not want more immigration.

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  • 7. At 5:58pm on 03 Feb 2011, Andrew Green wrote:

    This is an interesting article - not just for its content but for the light it throws on the BBC's inability to understand public opinion on immigration. Mark Easton's puzzlement seems entirely genuine, perhaps because he is absorbed in the traditional BBC approach to the issue.
    For example, crude comparisons of the immigrant populations of different countries do not allow for the very rapid change in Britain. Net foreign immigration under the last government totalled just over three million - no wonder the public are distrustful when the 1997 manifesto said that " Every country must have firm control over immigration and Britain is no exception."
    As regards the economic benefit, that is not in doubt provided that it is limited and controlled as it clearly has not been. The only major survey conducted in the UK is that by the House of Lords in April 2008 but it is hardly ever referred to by the BBC because it concluded that they had found no evidence that net immigration generates significant economic benefits for the existing UK population.
    Then there is the impact on population about which they are also in denial. The ONS projects a UK population of 70 million in 2029 (up from the present 62 million)with 68% due to immigration if present levels of immigration continue, as indeed they are continuing, but don't expect that to be addressed seriously by the BBC either.
    I could go on but readers will get the general drift. Until the BBC make a serious examination of both sides of the immigration argument thay will continue not only to be puzzled but seriously out of touch with the 77% of the publis who want to see immigration reduced - 50% "by a lot".

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  • 8. At 6:15pm on 03 Feb 2011, Whistling Neil wrote:

    6. At 5:43pm on 03 Feb 2011, Ann Bulley wrote:
    Easton needs to do better research.
    This year England will have 402.1 people for every square kilometre, overtaking the figure of 398.5 in Holland and 355.2 in Belgium.

    ==================

    No, you need to read more carefully. The report is about the UK not just England (so it occurs to me it also may include responses from some Scots who regard English living there as immigrants), so Marks statement is correct as is your statement about England alone.

    If you were to argue that the UK figures probably reflect England primarily due to population disparity between nations in the UK and therefore it would have been better to consider the area and population density of England alone in considering population density as a factor , that could a valid point of view.

    The UK is not England and vice versa.

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  • 9. At 6:48pm on 03 Feb 2011, Ernie wrote:

    Ah, my first ever "Referred" comment, for pointing out that a lot of english people are not comfortable with the culture and dress of some of those of middle eastern origin/religion.

    It's true though. And it's spreading. It shocked me to hear it from people I know, but there are an awful lot of people in the UK who are unhappy with the cultural artifacts of immigration in the numbers we have seen in recent years.

    This is not prejudice on my part, to report that I'm seeing more and more of this. Is it not the same thing that the baroness gave a speech on just a few weeks ago?

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  • 10. At 7:12pm on 03 Feb 2011, kaybraes wrote:

    Perhaps the fact that surveys seem to show Europeans as more tolerant to immigrants is because of the fact that in most continental countries, jobs ,health care, benefits and many other things are furnished to the native born citizen first and foremost, despite protestations to the contrary. Therefore it may be that the people do not perceive the immigrants as a threat or "jumping the queue ". In Britain however , the perception is that the native born might be regarded as second class citizens in their own country . They may indeed be justified in this thinking where , however well meaning, the facilities for the care and comfort of the immigrant are more freely available and easier to obtain than for the general populace.

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  • 11. At 8:12pm on 03 Feb 2011, jobsagoodin wrote:

    'And yet we are also, I think, a tolerant and broad-minded country in the main'

    There's nothing broad minded about believing immigration is always a good thing. Quite the reverse in fact. A broad minded person would think that in some circumstances immigration might be positive and in others not so. In particular, if a country experienced the kind of uncontrolled levels of immigration we experienced under New Labour I would suggest that all but a closed minded person would believe this was a net positive.

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  • 12. At 8:20pm on 03 Feb 2011, Christopher Slater-Walker wrote:

    Well I don't detect any "puzzlement" in Mark Easton's treatment of this subject; indeed, he offers us his own interpretation of the figures. Also, one person's "understanding of public opinion" is not guaranteed to be the same as someone else's. I don't even think the BBC as a whole should, or even can be obliged to hold a single corporate opinion on any particular matter of this nature. I think it would be a poorer institution if the BBC just adopted the stance of any given section of the public.

    All I know is that there is - even within my own family - a deep-seated and vehement hatred (I can't think of a better word for it) of immigrants in general. There are two problems I have with this: firstly, we need to differentiate from the outset between legal and illegal immigrants. One group is allowed to be here; the second group isn't, and I think there may be some justification in restricting their rights, not forgetting at the same time that we're supposed to be a civilised nation which extends a helping hand to those whose need is genuine, and also that we're all innocent until proven otherwise.

    Secondly, every single EU citizen is allowed to go and work in any other EU country without restriction. To take the example of Poland, they have in recent years (perhaps not so much now, granted) had something of an economic boom. When I went there in 2004, there were lots of Americans doing business there and I thought it was very telling. If eastern Europeans can come here and learn some English, why can we not go there and learn some of their language? We can't just expect the whole world to speak English. I do however feel it's reasonable to be spoken to in my own language in my own country.

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  • 13. At 8:57pm on 03 Feb 2011, jon112dk wrote:

    Asked to estimate the proportion of foreign-born people living in the UK, the average guess is 29.4%. The true figure according to OECD data is 10.8%
    ====================

    Love to know where the OECD got that figure, given that the previous government of the disunited kingdom had to admit that they had absolutely no idea how many foreigners were in the country.

    Important to note that the question is a typical immigration weasel word phrasing.

    People BORN outside the disunited kingdom is one thing. The bigger picture is now all the people who immigrated themselves, plus 50 years worth of their offspring.

    Go to a primary school or maternity unit and tell me only 10.8% are non-indigenous.

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  • 14. At 9:11pm on 03 Feb 2011, tarquin wrote:

    A good article, Mark, I think your comments about the quality of the national debate and hysteria are spot on

    However, I don't think you went deep enough - what frames our national debate? The media of course, certain elements of the gutter press, as watriler called them, are obsessed with immigrants to the extent that few people seem to have understanding of the differences between illegal immigrants, asylum seekers and various legal forms of immigration - all immigrants are shown as a strain on our expensive welfare state, only the horror stories of crooks, spongers and extremists are ever reported, and of course we are told daily of the 'islamification' of the country when the muslim population makes up something like 4% of the whole, no other group is given such attention

    This is counterbalanced by our experiences of immigrants, while the media whine about uncontrolled immigration, we know that many of our workers, the healthcare sector being the most obvious, are immigrants, many of our friends, neighbours and co-workers are immigrants or second-generation who we would not wish to see deported, but the press will constantly say immigration, and the people it brings, are a threat - so many people have this rather confused view that perhaps only island-dwellers could create

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  • 15. At 9:16pm on 03 Feb 2011, englishexpat wrote:


    Canada has historically been a country which has welcomed many legal immigrants and genuine refugees in the past, who in turn worked hard to contribute to Canadian society.
    I'm not sure which particular 'think-tank' provided the statistics for Canada, but they do not reflect the current majority mood in the country concerning legal and illegal immigration and 'fake' refugees.
    Analyzing stats. from census returns, it has been estimated by academics that fewer than 20% of recent legal immigrants provide a net financial gain to Canada. In addition, there are those who are covert and overt terrorists and are trying to overthrow our humanitarian society, which (mistakenly) welcomed them in the first place!
    Our health-care system has been inundated by waves of elderly parents and grandparents of recent immigrants(last 20 years), who were brought in for political(voting), not economic reasons. Benefit fraud is rampant; collecting benefits, financed by working taxpayers, while living in taxpayer-subsidized housing and at the same time working for cash, hence not paying any income taxes themselves.
    Plus we have a huge politically-correct lawyer-fuelled immigration and refugee industry,who label critics as racists and bigots, in order to silence and prevent any legitimate investigation,discussion and criticism concerning this issue.
    However, even the MSM in Canada has now started to discuss some of the more sensitive issues around this topic.

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  • 16. At 04:03am on 04 Feb 2011, nitwit wrote:

    This clearly shows that the British are bigoted; why else should they fear immigrants? My personal experience suggests that they think they are somehow superior to the immigrants barring some one from France or USA (whom they hate and envy).

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  • 17. At 04:06am on 04 Feb 2011, liberation wrote:

    The British are not xenophobic compared to others Europeans, it is simply that the scale of immigration has been under-reported and the country is now supporting a population of around 80million. With about 18million illegal’s immigrants, based on comparing reported food consumption with the official population. See below:-

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/comment/city-eye-facts-on-a-plate-our-population-is-at-least-77-million-395428.html

    I have just come back from my local central London Tesco Express and had to queue in a line of about 40 people, of which I could not recognise a single British aboriginal (including the staff). Likewise the Underground in North London is increasingly the same after the rush hour; I have no malice against these people though prefer the government to do what it is paid to do and defend our borders by removing any illegals.

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  • 18. At 04:18am on 04 Feb 2011, TechSing wrote:

    Mark, I like much of your work, but I'm very unhappy with this article.

    Firstly, concluding that British hostility to migrants is down to a national attitude that goes back to 1290, or has something to do with our island-status is ridiculous, it's a total cop out from actually exploring the real reasons behind the survey results. But looking closer the clue to the real reason is perhaps, ironically, right there in the cop out. The real reason the British are concerned about immigration is because there are a number of genuine problems with immigrants that no one in government, or the establishment, such as the BBC dare address, issues are always swept under the carpet.

    I would suggest that these issues include failure of the government to provide adequate addition services such as healthcare, schools and housing in areas with high immigration. Failure of the government to recognise among a small, but significant group of immigrants a failure to integrate into British society, ultimately leading to a tiny number carrying out terrorist acts or plotting against British democracy.

    This against a general background of appalling and worsening state provision of services in healthcare, education and housing particularly which will naturally cause people to seek scape goats.

    Finally, sadly, we should accept that some of these attitudes (especially where they clearly are misaligned with the truth or show a lack of compassion for people who have different backgrounds and have had different opportunities in life) show a lack of education and a degree of ignorance among the British public, no doubt brought about by several generations who have been failed by our poor education system. A lack of education and information further aggravated by dumbed down television which is full of worthless reality television shows in combination with weak and frankly cowardly new programs and journalism as, in my humble opinion, is unfortunately displayed in this article.

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  • 19. At 04:22am on 04 Feb 2011, Piggyback wrote:

    It's called the Daily Mail.

    There are 6+ million British immigrants around the world. Oh sorry, we call them expats. Many of them have committed crime, exploited locals, taken jobs off them (a highly skilled Brit displaces a highly skilled native from gaining experience). Not to mention the numerous cases of bribery, paedophilia and child rape, simply because the laws and society are more forgiving in other parts of the world.

    I'm sure they hate the Brits just as much as the Brits despise immigrants here.

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  • 20. At 06:25am on 04 Feb 2011, laughingjkings wrote:

    My partner moved to the UK from France, and is a qualified professional - funny how it's OK for 200,000 Brits to live in France and 1,000,000+ to live in Spain. We have shown ourselves to be a nation of hypocrites, taking the advantages of foreign travel, investments and holidays as well as buying holiday homes in France and Spain but balk at the idea that people may want to work here! However, this does not excuse the failure of successive British governments to invest in UK plc and create more jobs. However, it also demonstrates that British people should have spent more time learning a foreign language so that they can go and work in other EU countries.

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  • 21. At 07:32am on 04 Feb 2011, John1948 wrote:

    I think you would find similar figures if the survey had been about single mums, long term unemployed and any group that is being scapgoated.

    There always seems to be a sharp division between what we complain about because we think we know the general picture and what we actually experience. When I was teaching I had a discussion about the slave trade. The 10 year olds all agreed that it was bad, but one girl said, "Even so, I don't like black people." I pointed out that her best friend, sitting next to her was black. There was confusion on her face and then she put her arm around her friend and said, "But Natasha is different." The same goes for the NHS. Many complain about it, but also acknowledge that their actual experience has been good. The same with education. That doesn't mean that there are not problems with education, NHS or even immigration. But we complain more about them than our experience would warrant.

    Mark's report is an example of this. It focuses on the negative (perception)and mentions the positive (experience). There is a lot that is positive and if he had lead with the positive and mentioned the negative later the whole tone of debate could have been different. Is it because he (or the BBC) are frightened of being labelled pro-immigration? I know how Mark will defend himself, but my view is that the whole tone and hence people's reading of an article is established in the first couple of paragraphs. No amount of qualification and 'balance' can effect that.

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  • 22. At 07:43am on 04 Feb 2011, Denno wrote:

    It is rather interesting how these poll results contradict election results. Taking the Netherlands for instance, the anti-immigration PVV gained 15% of the vote, compared to less than 2% for the anti-immigration BNP in the UK. The National Front in France polls around 10% of the vote (I think).

    It would be interesting to know how this poll was conducted. If those surveyed where not anonymous, perhaps there is a difference between what someone will say in public, and what they will vote when it's just them in the polling booth.

    Incidentally, how can a comparison be made between health provision in the UK (which is free at the point of use for citizens and residents), and, taking the Netherlands again, a country that requires everyone to have mandatory health insurance (which can't really be called state sponsered) and where it is almost impossible to get access to health provision without it?

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  • 23. At 08:19am on 04 Feb 2011, objectivist wrote:

    As an Indian national working in the UK, I am myself surprised at the numbers of immigrants like myself from the subcontinent. Little wonder then that locals feel threatened! However I also feel that the present government is addressing the situation and making it so much more harder for people to immigrate or continue on their work permits.



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  • 24. At 08:24am on 04 Feb 2011, Simon Davies wrote:

    My partner works in Whitechapel in London. I occasionally brave the local council's traffic revenue cameras to drop her off at work. One look around on the streets confirms that immigration (legal & illegal) is wildly out of control. She deals daily with these people face to face and confirms many of them have no legal right to be in this country. The illegals take undue advantage of our hospitality and give little in return. They are here in breach of our laws and should consequently lose the protection of our state benefits. A lot of the wine sipping chatterati who bemoan the "treatment" of illegal immigrants have little actual daily contact with them.
    The protection of refugees during hostilities is supposed to be adjacent countries to their own, not another country that is thousands of miles away.

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  • 25. At 09:00am on 04 Feb 2011, Have your say Rejected wrote:

    If I saw an illegal immigrant dying on the pavement I would not deny him help, what a nasty place this country is turning into.

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  • 26. At 09:31am on 04 Feb 2011, Always Blurting wrote:

    From wikipedia, there are approx 7 million foreign residents in Germany which is 8.5% of their population, whilst 9% of the UK do not consider themselves to be British from the 2001 census, so to say that there are more foreign-born residents (proportionately) in Germany and Holland may not be true. Therefore, if there's more foreigners in a smaller space, then it is obvious that they will be more noticeable and so more likely to be considered negatively.

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  • 27. At 09:40am on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    I would question Easton's findings. He is trying to portray the UK as in some way uniquely intolerant, even citing events as far back as 1290 to support his case that anyone with concerns about immigration is 'hysterical'.

    He is, basically, trying to show the UK as in some way uniquely anti-immigrant, as opposed to other countries which are much more at ease with mass immigration.

    To do this, he ignores some very inconvenient truths.

    There has been a huge growth in anti-immigration sentiment across Europe in recent years, as seen in the existence of the likes of the Front National or Vlaams Belang. Denmark is strongly anti-immigrant, and has been for many years. Sweden has just seen a far-right party do rather well.

    And there are huge tensions. Has Easton heard of Pim Fortuyn and Theo van Gogh? Has he heard of the Danish cartoon riots, or the French suburb riots? Is he aware of the debate about islam in Germany, or the referenda in Switzerland about mosque building etc? The burqa bans Belgium and France seem to have passed by without Easton noticing them, too. Odd.

    If he has, he certainly doesn't mention them. But they all show that race relations in mainland Europe are anything but tension-free.

    I'm not sure if Easton doesn't know about these facts, which contradict his argument and seem a bit at odds with the findings he mentions. Or does he know, but choose not to mention them?

    Either way, Easton seems to be choosing facts to fit his argument, either through bias or lack of knowledge. If it is lack of knowledge, it seems odd that he should be preaching cultural openness to the rest of us, whilst being so culturally blinkered himself, with apparently very little knowledge or consciousness of reality in mainland Europe.

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  • 28. At 09:46am on 04 Feb 2011, Primus Designatus wrote:

    Why open up a can of worms? You surely must know the British are closet bigots. Just take a look at the number of Welshman, Irishman and Scotsman jokes!

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  • 29. At 10:00am on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    Why are we so concerned about immigration?
    Err? Because of issues like:
    - 'net immigration cost denial'
    - Cultural conflicts and lack of compatibility and trust between cultures
    - Population levels, congestion and density increased cost of housing in rental and capital values
    - Pressure on public services such as education and health
    - health tourism and some immigrants prone to 'genetic' and other multiple health disorders sometimes cause by their own cultural and other preferences ... at a massive cost to the British taxpayer
    - Improper health checks on immigrants for communicable diseases
    - rights and privileges of British people in their own native country of birth and the lack of an equality audit for the British unemployed due to intense discrimination against them and lack of priority for training and other govt spending
    - No of immigrants - v - the number of available jobs
    - wage squeezing by our UK establishment led vested interests gradually replacing British people with foreign workers to lower wage levels and reduce benefit levels and introduce foreign terms of employment etc with less rights for UK workers ... unfair competition and lack of a level playing field
    - Discrimination against British workers and govt failure to amend the human rights act to defend British jobs and British workers
    - poisonous, false frightened rabbit syndrome, pro immigration agenda thrust upon us by a rabid liberal socialist leaning pro globalisation, lazy, protected liar cushy job section of the British media (Yes... I wonder who that is referring to.
    - Immigrant crime and lack of deportation arrangements for foreign criminals
    - Lack of legal ability to revoke British citizenship for those immigrants who commit crimes in the UK
    - Lack of a proper oath of allegiance by immigrants to all things British
    - lack of respect by immigrants towards British armed services personnel
    - Terrorist threat ... is it my imagination or is most of the UK terrorists those that have been admitted or travel around as 'students'
    - Lack of proper attention paid to work done by Migration Watch which is the only trustworthy source of information on UK immigration
    - Repeated lies told by politicians, govt, media and UK education about the facts, costs, statistics on UK immigration
    - EU straightjacket on all related to UK immigration
    - Disproportionately high UK immigration relation to key indicators of population density, no of persons economically inactive etc
    - Isolation of white British children in multi ethnic children and the creation of racially segregated ghettoes
    - short medium and long terms costs of net immigration to the UK as the continuing excessive immigration levels add hundreds of billions of pounds ... possibly trillions of extra national liability and infrastructural costs to the national taxpayers bill. i.e. our children to pay for this with lower and lower living standards for the 'have not’s
    - Too many immigrants coming from the same troubled countries with the same issues...
    - immigration should reflect the true global society and we should be taking in more people from Japan, Eskimos, and much higher proportion of our immigration should be from Central and South America - ... why can't we have some Mexican, Brazilian immigrants with strong compatible religious and cultural values and stop taking in those who pretend not to hate us 'real British people'.
    - The number of non dom immigrant executive bankers taking excessive bonuses in the UK
    - Immigrants making strategic decisions in the UK which affect the UK economy
    - immigrants coming to the UK who do not wish to be English or Welsh or Scottish or Irish ... or even British ... many just coming here as job/benefit/healthcare/ education stealing opportunists
    - company transfers and temporary workers should have their own private and other health insurance and should display an immigrant L plate while driving on British roads and be required to carry and show ID
    - Improper voting in UK elections by immigrants
    - Too many British passports being given to immigrants ... having a visa is one thing ... getting a UK passport is quite another
    - chucking UK NI numbers at immigrants like confetti is destroying British jobs opportunities for British workers
    - Lack of reciprocal employment opportunities for British people in the immigrants own country ... the 'reciprocity argument'
    - insulting international comparison continually carried out by certain frightened rabbit, pro global agenda media organisations (I wonder who that might be referring to?)

    Dear Mr Easton
    There is a lot wrong with UK immigration but somehow, Mr Easton, despite your pages and pages of blog drivel ... you never seem to address it ... If you can't be even bothered to start addressing the real concerns of British people why do you bother asking the same insulting silly questions?
    Why are we so concerned about immigration?
    If you don't know the answer to that questions Mr Easton ... really the BBC and the licence payers should be very concerned indeed!
    The other issue is that the majority of UK real British people (including many of those whose parents came to Britain from overseas in the 1950's/60's/70's) are very concerned about immigration ... and that is their right to be so ... what happens/ attitudes towards immigration apply in other countries is their business ... not ours!
    Can you please try and focus on the real issue for once, Mr Easton ... what is going to be done about the problem of still largely uncontrolled partly polarised mass immigration from certain problem countries ... and to deal with the legitimate concerns of British people?
    The question is not WHY we are concerned but WHAT must now be done about it!
    US immigration works better than ours because the US authorities ensure that their immigration is truly global and is not polarised on certain problem countries ... that tend to have problems with established British culture, laws, religion, customs, manners etc.
    BTW some of my closest friends are immigrants and they agree with everything that I write.
    Much lower immigration numbers please and Mexicans and Eskimos as immigrants please ... and not the 'you know who's'!



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  • 30. At 10:28am on 04 Feb 2011, Carl Showalter wrote:

    I blame the many tabloid newspapers in the UK. Germany by contrast has one tabloid, Bild. a ratio of one tabloid per 82 million of population. Britain has the Sun, the Star, Daily Mail, Express, Mirror and the Sport, giving a ratio of 6 tabloids per 60 million or 1 per 10 million of population, effectively 8x more tabloid coverage. with so much uneducated emotional bile being poured on to the population in this country it's no wonder we're more influenced by them.

    I occasionally buy the mail for a laugh, I must admit. I love reading those hyperbolic stories about a gay illegal immigrant's islamic fundamentalist mephedrone-addicted status dog of a dangerous breed that lives in a vietnamese-run skunk factory and stashes it's money in an offshore tax haven whilst eating a WWII veteran's cat. they really brighten up my day.

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  • 31. At 10:29am on 04 Feb 2011, sandy winder wrote:

    What this survey fails to include is the fact that England gets much immigration from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. A house move of 100 yards from Belgium to Holland counts as immigration but not one of 500 miles from the Outer Hebrides to London.

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  • 32. At 10:29am on 04 Feb 2011, spinusthetruth wrote:

    This is a very emotive subject and even as a fair minded person it is very difficult to express an honest view without falling foul of the left wing/liberal intelligentsia (BBC included).

    I used to work in a predominately white anglo saxon industry. I now work in an industry that employs many immigrants and visit areas where the majority population have an immigrant background. I count many as my friends.

    However the survey does not surprise me. We are a SMALL ISLAND with limited space. We have been bankrupted by socialist policies (not singularly the bankers) and as a result the coalition are having to make cuts. Terrorist threats come from an immigrant background and those sheltered by Jack Straw's Human Rights Act. Tony Blair's multiculturalism was a laudable sentiment but always doomed to fail.

    Interestingly, when I talk with with those whose families have been here a long time, they are just as concerned about immigration as the white indigenous population.

    All these clever people who pontificate from high office need to get out on the streets and see what the world is really like in modern day Britain.



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  • 33. At 10:41am on 04 Feb 2011, SoUnfair wrote:

    Mark, you ask 'Why are we so concerned about immigration?' maybe it is because those concerned have been reading the BBC's own reports.

    For example :
    England now has the highest population density in Europe.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/7618994.stm

    The UK has most congested roads in Europe .
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/3053031.stm

    Southern England has less water per head then the Sudan.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/3786529.stm

    The UK builds the smallest homes in Europe.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8201900.stm

    Those concerned about immigration are not necessarily those of the far-right but include green activists such as Jonathon Porritt & Sir David Attenborough
    http://www.optimumpopulation.org/

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  • 34. At 10:44am on 04 Feb 2011, JL wrote:

    The contradictions inherent in these results are curious, if not entirely surprising. Britain has a long tradition of conservatism and xenophobia (the expulsion of Jews in the 13th century being a case in point), but also a long tradition of enlightenment and relative tolerance of foreigners (which doesn't necessarily translate into liking them). The odd thing, of course, is that England is itself the product of waves of immigration - the original 'Englanders' were first subjugated by the Romans, then overrun, expelled or absorbed by the Anglo-Saxons, followed by centuries of rule by and mixing with Vikings and Normans. So it is safe to say that most English people are descendants of people from the Continent, and the only 'pure' Britons - if indeed there ever were any - may be found in Wales and Scotland. So the xenophobia is rather hypocritical - but perhaps this is a natural reaction; having slaughtered and subjugated the original Britons, the Anglo-Saxons were presumably acutely aware that the same might happen to them, and developed a particularly acute sense of fear of foreigners as a result (aided by the relative isolation of being an island nation), combined with a (usually entirely unjustified) belief in their own superiority.

    Interesting parallels may also be drawn to the US, where successive groups of immigrants have first been scapegoated and repressed only to slowly become integrated into the mainstream and in turn become the 'repressors' - for example, consider the experiences of in turn Irish, Italian, and Scandinavian immigrants (and most recently, Asians and Latinos). The difference of course is that while the time scale of integration - from repression to being mainstream - in the US is counted in the order of decades, in the UK it lasts for centuries. Undoubtedly, part of the reason why the process is so much faster in the US is due to the lack of a class system - success is not determined on the basis of name, title, ancestry, or accent, but whether you are successful in your life - so until the vestiges of the class system - and the prejudices that come with it - that still remain so strong in this country are rooted out, there is little reason to hope tolerance will increase regardless of the number of immigrants.

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  • 35. At 10:56am on 04 Feb 2011, Kamana wrote:

    England is now the most overpopulated country in Europe bar Malta. Anyone who lives or works in London will tell you this city is horribly overcrowded. And also we in the capital take the most number of immigrants. This is the place they all seem to go to. London has lost its identity due to decades of relentless immigration. Other cities are also affected and the trend will increase until something is done about it. Allowing mass immigration to continue will cause serious social problems in the not too distant future. It's amazing the government and the liberal supporters of uncontrolled migration cannot see this.

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  • 36. At 11:21am on 04 Feb 2011, Matt Smith wrote:

    Maybe the reason behind the “relative antipathy” to migrants is not that the debate is being conducted in “hysterical” terms but that there is hardly any debate at all. At the last election the issue only flared by chance because of Gordon Brown’s response to Gillian Duffy. Once the election was over the BBC quickly reverted to keeping immigration off the agenda. The public can see the rapid changes taking place around them and get very frustrated when these concerns are not discussed. The BBC seems to take a general view that immigration is good but when the facts are examined a different picture emerges. The House of Lords conducted an exhaustive enquiry in 2008 into immigration and found that it has very little impact of GDP per capita and probably has a negative effect on the lowest paid. Immigration is not the answer to filling job vacancies; between 2002 and the start of the recession vacancies in the UK were stable at around 600,000 despite the influx of well over million immigrants during this period. Mark Easton may enjoy his neighbourhood becoming more “cosmopolitan” but people who rely on social housing, where waiting lists have grown significantly or who send their children to a local primary school which might be running out of spaces or have a significant number of pupils who don’t speak English as a first language are entitled to be concerned. The BBC should better reflect the concerns of its licence payers and properly discuss this issue.

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  • 37. At 11:23am on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    'The results suggest the British are more likely than anyone else to say that immigrants take jobs from native-born workers'

    Perhaps that is because two out of every three new jobs in the UK last year went to an immigrant and not to a British worker!

    When is the 'BBC nitwit' going to understand that the reason that the British appear to be more concerned about the effects of immigration in the UK, is that because of our unique circumstances and economy ... the adverse affects of uncontrolled and excessively polarised immigration have a disproportionately much larger, adverse affect on our country ... particularly on the 'have nots' section of the UK population.

    When is the BBC going to recommend an equality audit on behalf of the UK unemployed and highlight the intense discrimination here against British workers and when are immigrants posting their vile anti-British propaganda on Mr Easton's posionous liar blog - going to admit that some of them have no legal right to be here in the UK and keep stealing our UK jobs?

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  • 38. At 11:31am on 04 Feb 2011, Framer wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 39. At 11:35am on 04 Feb 2011, tredwyn wrote:

    #I do however feel it's reasonable to be spoken to in my own language in my own country.

    Unless of course you're Welsh.

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  • 40. At 11:37am on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 41. At 11:49am on 04 Feb 2011, TrueChange wrote:

    I think Britons who have strong sentiments against immigrants, coming to their country, should read history of their British Empire, how their forefathers barged into other countries for centuries without any permission of indigenous people of those countries, ruled and exploited them and their country's resources for the benefit of their own Empire and british people who are still benefiting from it (as economical foundation of today's british was laid on the resources from wealth looted from those countries). OR may be these certain group of Britons like to rather stay ignorant or arrogant forever.

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  • 42. At 11:58am on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    //30. At 10:28am on 04 Feb 2011, Carl Showalter wrote:
    I blame the many tabloid newspapers in the UK. Germany by contrast has one tabloid, Bild. a ratio of one tabloid per 82 million of population. Britain has the Sun, the Star, Daily Mail, Express, Mirror and the Sport, giving a ratio of 6 tabloids per 60 million or 1 per 10 million of population, effectively 8x more tabloid coverage. with so much uneducated emotional bile being poured on to the population in this country it's no wonder we're more influenced by them.//

    I love the snobbish 'untruth', clearly evident in your posting, and reflecting Easton's blog, that anti-immigrant feeling is based on lack of education, implying that 'educated' people are above such things.

    Well, I spend a lot of time in Germany, Benelux etc. From what I see, anti-immigrant feeling is pretty strong there, too. There are tensions - look at the frequent French riots, the killings of Fortuyn and van Gogh, the Danish cartoon riots, the apparent rise of the Swedish far right, the burqa bans....

    The idea that the UK is somehow alone in resenting immigration is complete nonsense.

    As for the BBC, it is interesting that Easton is either unaware, or unwilling to acknowledge, the tensions elsewhere in Europe. I've noticed that very few of the Guardiany types who support immigration actually really have much contact with it. And their knowledge of Europe rarely extends beyond an ability to say 'Zeitgeist'.




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  • 43. At 12:05pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    If you're British and unemployed ... if you're fortunate enough to still have a roof over your head ... you will still have to buy a BBC licence fee to read Mark Easton's ... 'analysis'.

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  • 44. At 12:28pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    38 - I wonder if Mr Easton knows what an 'equality audit' is?

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  • 45. At 12:28pm on 04 Feb 2011, TrueChange wrote:

    'What goes around comes around'. What do britons fear? do they think immigrants might takeover their country and its resources, the way they did to more than half of the world through their Empire extension plans! Well I think they should accept the fact that there was a time when british went to the world and now world is coming to the Britain and not everyone is as ambitious as Britons of 18th nad 19th century were, so you can get over your self imposed fears!

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  • 46. At 12:47pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    I do find it highly hyporcritical that a country who sent so many of its own people to live in other people's countries during the 17th, 19th & 20th Centuries as part of British imperial expansion are now very appalled by so many foreign nationals have the cheek to want to live in the UK. Get over yourselves UK. How many of your own nationals live in other peoples countries and use their welfare systems, pensions and state schools? Its a redundant argument. Especially when its made from what was one the world's worst offenders at plundering the natural reasources of people's countries while opressing the native population. Ask the indigenous populations of New Zealand, Australia, Canada, South Africa, India etc.... They will just tell you to suck it up. Plus the reality of immigration is not as threatening as many of you imagine it to be.

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  • 47. At 1:08pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @ Kamana wrote: "England is now the most overpopulated country in Europe bar Malta".
    Wrong. Britain is a densly populated country yes. But that shouldn't be confused with "over populated" which is a very subjective term to use. Highest density of population in Europe i.e. people per sq mile is The Netherlands. Britain comes in a distant 2nd.
    Plus have you ever considered one of the main reasons for the huge increases in the British population levels is the fact that most people are living longer..... Following the census next month you might want to check out the staggerring proportion of the British population are aged over 65. It's frightening. But it has nothing to do with immigration.

    @nautonier you're funny. You have to be tongue in cheek surely. Especially with so little fact to back up your very very very very long rant.
    So you'd throw out every other foreign national residing in the UK and then only accept Innuit people, Brazilians or Mexicans??? Intersting immigration policy. Well I'd best pack my bags and go back to New Zealand then. Yessiree no one has dared immigrate to New Zealand...... thats if you don't count the 85.7% of the current population who currently class themselves of British descent or as full British nationals. Or the 97.2% of New Zealand population who can't speak any other language apart from English. Amazing considering the country has two official languages. Guess you don't even know what the one would be without Google-ing it.

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  • 48. At 1:17pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 49. At 1:35pm on 04 Feb 2011, Carl Showalter wrote:

    42. At 11:58am on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    I love the snobbish 'untruth', clearly evident in your posting, and reflecting Easton's blog, that anti-immigrant feeling is based on lack of education, implying that 'educated' people are above such things.

    it was more a dig at the tabloids, which should have been very evident. not quite sure why you took such offence, when what I was saying is that the increased tabloid coverage in the UK invariably leads to increased influence.

    Well, I spend a lot of time in Germany, Benelux etc. From what I see, anti-immigrant feeling is pretty strong there, too. There are tensions - look at the frequent French riots, the killings of Fortuyn and van Gogh, the Danish cartoon riots, the apparent rise of the Swedish far right, the burqa bans....

    Well, I live in Europe, spend a lot of time travelling round a number of countries and return to the UK on a regular basis. From what I see, the UK is far more anti-immigrant simply by not being a member of the Schengen Treaty. Switzerland and Norway aren't even in the EU, yet both are signatories to Schengen, which if you didn't already know allows the free movement of people between member countries. currently the UK isn't even designated as a future member.

    Nowhere did I mention that the UK was alone in resenting immigration, it's just the UK resents it more than others.

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  • 50. At 1:37pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    I do have to wonder how many folks who are spouting nonsensical rubbish about the "threat of immigrants" would like to pause from smashing out out their paranoid arguments onto their keyboards and think how much of a burden was it during WW2 to have so many young men and woman coming to the aid of Britain from countries such as USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Kenya, Sth Africa, India, Jamaica, Trinidad, Iraq, Ireland, Poland, Czechoslavakia, France, Netherlands, Rhodesia/Zimbabwe...etc Many of whom risked and lost their lives in the defence of this country's independance and democracy. They didn't have to. My grandparents were two such people and I really get sick and tired of the same BS argument that somehow us foreigners are a huge drain on Britains reasources and welfare state. Whereas 70 years ago we weren't. A bit more gratittutude please.

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  • 51. At 1:37pm on 04 Feb 2011, jon112dk wrote:

    #41, #45 - suggestions here that the current uncontrolled immigration is quid pro quo for empire.

    The empire was an invasion of other people's countries, against the will of the indigenous population.

    Are you accepting that the current mass influx into the disunited kingdom is also an invasion against the will of the indigenous population?

    Most people (including me) accept that local people had an ethical right to resist and expel the empire - would you accept that we have the same right with regards the current invasion?

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  • 52. At 1:38pm on 04 Feb 2011, jobsagoodin wrote:

    Matt 47

    'Ask the indigenous populations of New Zealand, Australia, Canada, South Africa, India etc.... They will just tell you to suck it up'

    Indeed they may. But if you're suggesting that we will suffer the same fate, then that very neatly explains why so many people view mass immigration as a threat, and are correct to do so.

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  • 53. At 1:38pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    47. At 1:08pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @nautonier you're funny. You have to be tongue in cheek surely. Especially with so little fact to back up your very very very very long rant.
    ...........
    Good ... I don't find you very funny!
    ..............
    So you'd throw out every other foreign national residing in the UK and then only accept Innuit people, Brazilians or Mexicans??? Intersting immigration policy.
    ................

    Wrong ... you have misquoted me and like all 'pro-immigrationists' you redirect the discussion onto something obscure ... and I doubt if you are unemployed or have to compete in a difficult sector of the skill range or economy. Do you enjoy discriminating against the 'British have nots'
    .............................

    Well I'd best pack my bags and go back to New Zealand then. Yessiree no one has dared immigrate to New Zealand...... thats if you don't count the 85.7% of the current population who currently class themselves of British descent or as full British nationals. Or the 97.2% of New Zealand population who can't speak any other language apart from English. Amazing considering the country has two official languages. Guess you don't even know what the one would be without Google-ing it.

    ...........................

    I can check the flight times for you if you like!

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  • 54. At 1:49pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @nautioner If you're so down on foreign nationals living in the UK and you seem utterly convicned they provide nothing to the UK... you may want to check out the bith place of the bloke who master minded the fighter command airdefence of southern England during the Battle of Britain. Sir Keith Park. Yes you will be utterly astounded to know he wasn't born anywhere near Britain. Or go back a bit further how about the brilliant Isambard Brunnel? Yes the genius son of immigrants who helped put British engineering on the map. Oh the scandal of it. Or are they honourary Brits in your eyes because they're white?

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  • 55. At 1:49pm on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    //46. At 12:47pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:
    I do find it highly hyporcritical that a country who sent so many of its own people to live in other people's countries during the 17th, 19th & 20th Centuries as part of British imperial expansion are now very appalled by so many foreign nationals have the cheek to want to live in the UK. Get over yourselves UK. How many of your own nationals live in other peoples countries and use their welfare systems, pensions and state schools? Its a redundant argument. Especially when its made from what was one the world's worst offenders at plundering the natural reasources of people's countries while opressing the native population. Ask the indigenous populations of New Zealand, Australia, Canada, South Africa, India etc.... They will just tell you to suck it up. Plus the reality of immigration is not as threatening as many of you imagine it to be. //

    The basis of your posting is hostility towards the UK. Many of the people who support immigration seem to think, as you do, that it's 'payback' for 'our' sins in the past.

    Well, at least you show that support of immigration is based on hostility to the UK. Most people know that, which is why most dislike it.

    But you should consider the racism implicit in your remarks. Blaming us for our history is as bad as blaming current Germans for the Third Reich, or Jews for whatever bigots used to blame them for.

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  • 56. At 1:58pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @jobsagoodin wrote: "Indeed they may. But if you're suggesting that we will suffer the same fate, then that very neatly explains why so many people view mass immigration as a threat, and are correct to do so".

    Ha ha ha ha ha.... yes well you'd better run for the hills then. Goodness the chances of an overwhelming imperial army coming from another country to this one are pretty much zero. So not sure what point you are trying to make but it amused me nonethless.

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  • 57. At 2:03pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    54. At 1:49pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @nautioner If you're so down on foreign nationals living in the UK and you seem utterly convicned they provide nothing to the UK... you may want to check out the bith place of the bloke who master minded the fighter command airdefence of southern England during the Battle of Britain. Sir Keith Park. Yes you will be utterly astounded to know he wasn't born anywhere near Britain. Or go back a bit further how about the brilliant Isambard Brunnel? Yes the genius son of immigrants who helped put British engineering on the map. Oh the scandal of it. Or are they honourary Brits in your eyes because they're white?

    ................
    If you could possibly try sticking to the facts and year 2011 ... it might eventually engender a sensible and relevant discussion as British families by the tens/hundreds of thousands lose their jobs, homes, children, self respect, sanity and the vultures move in to take their assets, rights and few remaining privileges (if any left).

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  • 58. At 2:06pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @nautioner: wrote "Good ... I don't find you very funny!"

    Oh well I never aim to be funny. But unlike yourself I do aim to be factual. You seem to misunderstand me. I don't hate the British that would be like punching myself in the face. I am mixed race part NZ Maori & part British. I'm proud of both my parts of my heritage. But why should someone else tell me I can't come and live in the same country my anncestors left not more than 100 years ago to find a better life in New Zealand? All I'm doing is highlighting the inherant hypocrisy in the argument that somehow us "foreigners" are a huge drain on the welfare state? But while ignoring how many British nationals are living in other countries using their welfare system. Of which I don't have an issue with. For your info I have been unemployed in this country several times. I've never once claimed the dole. Mainly because like the vast majority of non UK citizens I wasn't entitled to it. Fair enough? Good.

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  • 59. At 2:07pm on 04 Feb 2011, Pat berks wrote:

    "...the proportion of foreign-born people living in the UK..... The true figure according to OECD data is 10.8% "

    That doesn't tell the whole story, does it ? It's a pretty poor measure of the actual effect of immigration on the native English population - it ignores too many other factors.

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  • 60. At 2:09pm on 04 Feb 2011, jobsagoodin wrote:

    Matt 54

    'I do have to wonder how many folks who are spouting nonsensical rubbish about the "threat of immigrants"'

    Nonsensical rubbish is it now ? Didn't you just use the example of the indigenous peoples of New Zealand, Australia etc. to illustrate the dangers that immigration poses. Or perhaps I misunderstood you. Perhaps you think they benefitted tremendously from the wave of British immigration, and any Aborigine or Maori who might have warned against the impact of this immigration 200 years ago would have been 'spouting nonsensical rubbish'.

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  • 61. At 2:13pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @Mason Arms wrote: "But you should consider the racism implicit in your remarks. Blaming us for our history is as bad as blaming current Germans for the Third Reich, or Jews for whatever bigots used to blame them for".

    No pointing out hypocrisy or cultural insecurity isn't racism. Understanding your own past is a way of understanding the reasons why the results of this survery ended up the way they did. Of course I'm not implying that all British people are racist. But you can't brush off the results of a survery such as this as an anomaly.
    Also well done for fullfilling Goodwins theory and bringing the 3rd Reich into the debate.

    Anyway I'm bored of this I feel like I'm just constantly having to justify my democratic existance in the UK to Daily Mail readers.

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  • 62. At 2:20pm on 04 Feb 2011, jobsagoodin wrote:

    Matt 56

    Oh I see. The problems the indigenous populations faced had nothing to do with the sheer weight of numbers of the immigrants then? Nothing to do with their different culture and way of life. It was all down to the imperial army. I guess you've got a much better understanding of these things than I do. I guess the imperial army must have also been responsible for the plight of the native indians in North America as well. Yes I guess they must.

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  • 63. At 2:25pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    58. At 2:06pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:

    @nautioner: wrote "Good ... I don't find you very funny!"

    Oh well I never aim to be funny. But unlike yourself I do aim to be factual. You seem to misunderstand me. I don't hate the British that would be like punching myself in the face. I am mixed race part NZ Maori & part British.

    .................

    Successive British govts are to blame for not getting a proper handle on UK immigration ... everyone has their own story ... this is about mass immigration and its effects particularly on the 'British have nots' as once again and as predictably mis-represented by the BBC.

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  • 64. At 2:28pm on 04 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    Mr Mark Easton if you/the BBC are going to keep 'apologising' regarding UK mass immigration and you think that we/some of us 'deserve it'.

    NOT IN MY NAME!

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  • 65. At 2:38pm on 04 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    19. At 04:22am on 04 Feb 2011, Piggyback wrote:
    It's called the Daily Mail.
    There are 6+ million British immigrants around the world. Oh sorry, we call them expats. Many of them have committed crime, exploited locals, taken jobs off them (a highly skilled Brit displaces a highly skilled native from gaining experience). Not to mention the numerous cases of bribery, paedophilia and child rape, simply because the laws and society are more forgiving in other parts of the world.
    -------------------
    The primary reason British live abroad is because the are rich and/or highly skilled. They are net contributers to their adopted countries. And being few and middle-class they cause no social problems.
    The primary reason people come to this country is because they are are poor. Britain gives them work at the expense of its own population. And if they can't work, or don't feel like it, give them lots of lots of free money,housing and healthcare.
    Six million people isn't a lot when spread across the World. It is massive when stuffed into a small island nation. Ordinary working class British people have been removed from large sections of our major towns and cities by people they have nothing in common with. And if they dare to complain they are called racist by people who equate a British Engineer moving to Germany with an Afghan peasant moving to Tower Hamlets.

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  • 66. At 2:40pm on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    //61. At 2:13pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:
    @Mason Arms wrote: "But you should consider the racism implicit in your remarks. Blaming us for our history is as bad as blaming current Germans for the Third Reich, or Jews for whatever bigots used to blame them for".

    No pointing out hypocrisy or cultural insecurity isn't racism. Understanding your own past is a way of understanding the reasons why the results of this survery ended up the way they did. Of course I'm not implying that all British people are racist. But you can't brush off the results of a survery such as this as an anomaly. //

    You're confusing dislike of immigration with racism.

    And you're trying to imply that dislike of immigration is based on insecurity or hypocrisy, as opposed to the common sense reality, which is that immigration brings a whole lot of problems with it.

    Your arguments are proof that many who support immigration are hostile to the UK, which implies that you want to harm it, and recognise immigration as a way of doing so, as racist payback for the supposed sins of our fathers. Are their any other races you people pick out for 'special treatment' of this sort?

    Anyway, Easton is being either dishonest or ignorant in ignoring the very real tensions over immigration that are clear in France, Belgium, Denmark, even Sweden. He either doesn't know the truth, or prefers to ignore the likes of burqa bans, the Danish cartoon riots, the frequent French race riots etc.

    And if Easton is looking for racism and bigotry, shouldn't he be looking at the frequent ethnic violence in India, Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya....

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  • 67. At 2:43pm on 04 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    "Why are we so concerned about immigration?"
    The question should be why do journalists who work for the BBC have to ask.

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  • 68. At 3:30pm on 04 Feb 2011, TrueChange wrote:

    Re jon112dk's comments

    I think you missed my point, there is no match of British Empire to migrants coming to UK as Empire was committing very organised invasions which migrants by no means can do, refering back to my point- read some of the history to know the facts, Andrew Marr's book is quiet, I hope you don't want to 'rather stay ignorant or arrogant forever'. Also all legal migrants have been given permission to be here so no question of 'invasion' arise anyways. Well finally if one day UK parliament will decide to through out all not so indigenous people then tough we don't have any problem with that so rather than blaming migrants blame your government!!

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  • 69. At 3:36pm on 04 Feb 2011, BluesBerry wrote:

    If I were to ask a Brit how s/he felt about immigrants, I would expect to hear something like this: "We're full of them! They take our jobs! They redice wages. They use up NHS time & services. The refuse to assimilate. The Government needs to close the gates."
    Some of this likely comes from the Eurosceptic attitude; you don't want a bunch of Europeans pushing the Brits to get closer to the EU, do you?
    The attitude of the British People keeps the Government anti-immigrant as well.
    Why?
    Because the immigration policies of political parties affects the way people vote, and when 70% think the government is doing a 'poor job' of controlling immigration, that can amount to a lot of votes for any party willing to put its foot down.
    Here are a few stats, though I doubt it will change any British mind:
    - 11% UK population immigrants,
    - 20% Canada and
    - 14% USA.
    Maybe the number of 'Polish plumbers' entering the UK is somewhat skewed, but surely this select goup is not what we are talking about.
    Does immigration create seed-beds for terrorists?
    No.
    Do immigrants destroy "national culture".
    No.
    They are only 11% of the entire popilation!
    I suggest that the British perception re Immigrants is misperception.
    About 25% of UK citizens think immigration is the most important problem facing the country - ahead of those who said it was the economy. Can you imagine that!
    So what does PM David Cameron do? He plans to cut immigration from 200,000 a year to the "tens of thousands". Who and what is that going to suffer? Business in need of skilled workers? The economy?
    This issue of immigration needs a UK rethink.

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  • 70. At 3:43pm on 04 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    50. At 1:37pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:
    I do have to wonder how many folks who are spouting nonsensical rubbish about the "threat of immigrants" would like to pause from smashing out out their paranoid arguments onto their keyboards and think how much of a burden was it during WW2 to have so many young men and woman coming to the aid of Britain from countries such as USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Kenya, Sth Africa, India, Jamaica, Trinidad, Iraq, Ireland, Poland, Czechoslavakia, France, Netherlands, Rhodesia/Zimbabwe...etc Many of whom risked and lost their lives in the defence of this country's independance and democracy. They didn't have to. My grandparents were two such people and I really get sick and tired of the same BS argument that somehow us foreigners are a huge drain on Britains reasources and welfare state. Whereas 70 years ago we weren't. A bit more gratittutude please.
    ---------
    Its very ironic you are defending mass immigration by quoting a war that was fought to defend the British way of life. A war fought by 40 million Britons, who would be absolutely amazed that 60 years later they would be entire towns where ethnic Britons were in the minority.
    Not that your argument holds much water. Most of the countries you quote fought against us at other random points in history. And if being on our side in the Second World War meant you could come here, that would include 4 billion people. Although not Romanians as they were with the Axis.

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  • 71. At 4:18pm on 04 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    46. At 12:47pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:
    I do find it highly hyporcritical that a country who sent so many of its own people to live in other people's countries during the 17th, 19th & 20th Centuries as part of British imperial expansion are now very appalled by so many foreign nationals have the cheek to want to live in the UK. Get over yourselves UK.
    ---------------------
    Apart for large countries with a small tribal population (America, Canada, Australia) there was no mass migration. Countries with a signifcant population such as India and China only had enough British people in them to run the place and trade. They also left when the empire ended. There were less British running the whole of India than the current Indian population of Bradford. If being part of an empire gives you settlement rights when it ends, then I want a nice flat in Rome.

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  • 72. At 4:19pm on 04 Feb 2011, Gav wrote:

    I’m an migrant - economist by profession and my wife is a consultant, both of us have been paying 40% tax for last many yrs. We’re constantly reminded by sections of media why we shouldn't use NHS or not send children to schools. We had the opportunity to move to Singapore, Canada or the UK – we chose to come here because of family/friends and perception about british people as welcoming. And I wish we had made a different choice. A day doesn’t go past when we’re not reminded directly or indirectly – how we are burden on the society! Parts of English media are inherently biased - I hate the thought of bringing up children in this, sometimes extremely patronising environment. I wish one day all of migrants just leave – so locals realise how key we are to this economy. But I know first hand exactly how difficult it is to go once you have family and roots fixed - I have been trying for 2 years. But anyone planning to relocate to the UK – my strong suggestion would be - think again!

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  • 73. At 4:34pm on 04 Feb 2011, ecolizzy wrote:

    May I point out to all those people talking of the genocide of peoples in New Zealand, Australia, the Americas, and the Imperialism in India and Africa, which the British are blamed for.

    This is exactly the reason the english/welsh/scots/irish are worried now. Your point actually proves they are right to be frightened of their future. Most of the indigenous peoples were eliminated, or subjugated under imperialism, so that is about to happen to the UK.

    So what type of country do you want the UK to become? Without the english/welsh/scots/irish it will become a totally different country, we learnt from our bad ways, the new immigrants have a whole new set of rules they live by, and what a jumble they will be.

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  • 74. At 4:42pm on 04 Feb 2011, R4pt0r_0079 wrote:

    I think it is all too often the case that legal and illegal immigrants are lumped together.

    I think there should be a clear distinction between legal and illegal immigrants. I don't think legal skilled migrant workers are a strain to UK economy, but quite the contrary. We actually drop a lot of money here:

    - we didn't cost the UK to educate or train, so saves the UK on those expenses
    - even if educated/trained in the UK, overseas tuition fees are quite steep so effectively we fund our own degrees here
    - we pay income tax just like everyone else
    - we pay council tax just like everyone else
    - we spend here just like everyone else
    - we have current/saving accounts with UK banks so is contributing to the banking industry and economy
    - etc, etc.

    Further to this, my income tax also goes into the NHS (just like everyone else's) so I see no problem with me getting medical attention should I need it, which in the seven years I've been here, has only been like once. Plus, if I understand correctly, my tax should also contribute to state school funding, so should I have kids in the future, I don't really see what the problem is for me to send them to state schools. Otherwise, I can always send them to private schools and pay tuition fees right?

    So are all immigrants considered a strain to UK economy and society? Even the tax-paying, average to above-average income immigrants?

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  • 75. At 4:48pm on 04 Feb 2011, TurnipCruncher wrote:

    I can't help but feel that this whole problem, if not reversed then at least stopped, it will end in violence somewhere down the line. It is not so much the British peoples "hatred" of immigrants, but the liberal elite inflicting unwanted change on the majority without actually having to live with the consequences themselves.

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  • 76. At 5:20pm on 04 Feb 2011, starus wrote:

    I knew that English people are bigots.
    You just feel it if you are non-white non-Chistian

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  • 77. At 5:22pm on 04 Feb 2011, ecolizzy wrote:

    #75 Very good point TC, and this might be the catalyst to start the violence...

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8302058/WikiLeaks-cables-MI6-warns-of-new-suicide-bomb-wave.html

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  • 78. At 5:39pm on 04 Feb 2011, Piggyback wrote:

    65. At 2:38pm on 04 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:
    19. At 04:22am on 04 Feb 2011, Piggyback wrote:
    Many of them have committed crime, exploited locals, taken jobs off them (a highly skilled Brit displaces a highly skilled native from gaining experience). Not to mention the numerous cases of bribery, paedophilia and child rape, simply because the laws and society are more forgiving in other parts of the world.
    -------------------
    The primary reason British live abroad is because the are rich and/or highly skilled. They are net contributers to their adopted countries. And being few and middle-class they cause no social problems.

    ==============

    Somehow I don't think depriving the jobs and experience of local indigenous people and molesting children is contributing to their host country. Correct me if I'm wrong there.

    At a time when unemployment is on a mass scale in other countries (e.g. China, UAE), but companies of British origin (founded and based in those countries for convenient purposes) are still choosing to employ British workers instead of highly skilled locals, that is causing a major social issue.

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  • 79. At 5:44pm on 04 Feb 2011, Piggyback wrote:

    74. At 4:42pm on 04 Feb 2011, R4pt0r_0079 wrote:

    Thanks for doing your part in keeping the British economy and government coffers stable. Unfortunately the mob mentality of Brits take things at face value - they would rather side with a 3 generational family who breed like rabbits and entirely rely on state benefit handouts, than a non-British looking (whatever that means!), hard working immigrant.

    They can't get it through their thick skulls that they're not the only ones who can be highly skilled... they assume that those expats abroad are the only highly skilled type in the world - and that the world needs them. They can't accept that there are non British who are capable of being highly skilled and thus highly paid too.

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  • 80. At 7:51pm on 04 Feb 2011, TurnipCruncher wrote:

    Piggyback, thanks for labelling all British expats as child molesting criminals. Not that I care less about people who have chosen to leave the country and not pay their taxes elsewhere. But how do you think people would react if I were to state that many of the immigrants to the UK were benefit cheating, tax-dodging thieves and engaged in activities such as, oh, I don't know, grooming children in Derby for paedophilic rape gangs of Pakistani men?

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  • 81. At 9:51pm on 04 Feb 2011, Freebutnotsosure wrote:

    Mark Easton mentions the fact that levels of concern are high in the UK are because of the openess and debating about immigration in this Country, well I think the opposite is true. Ever since Labour came to power anyone that dared to mention the 'I' word were branded racist, and so it was tucked under the carpet, and now with our new Conservative- Lib-Dem. coalition in power the same is happening. What is needed is proper debate regarding the subject of Immigration, most of us accept that we need some level of immigration to these shores, but maybe the limit has been reached. The Conservatives/Lib-dems capping of Immigration is a joke and is far too little. My idea would be to put a total halt on all immigration into this Country for the next 5 years, while a true idea is made of how many people are actually here, legally or not, and either settling them properly, or deporting them.

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  • 82. At 11:27pm on 04 Feb 2011, ecolizzy wrote:

    #81 Cameron is speaking, in Germany (!) about the UK

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/david-cameron/8305346/Muslims-must-embrace-our-British-values-David-Cameron-says.html

    I can't wait for the census in March, if you were an illegal immigrant would you fill the form in?! I don't think it will be a very honest exercise, supermarkets are the ones with the truth, they know how much they're selling, they say there's already 70 million in the UK.

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  • 83. At 00:09am on 05 Feb 2011, ecolizzy wrote:

    So the Americans have the same view as Cameron. Reading the comments you could say we are fed up with mass immigration!

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/edwest/100074751/wikileaks-americans-call-leicester-the-most-conservative-islamic-community-in-europe/#dsq-content

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  • 84. At 09:12am on 05 Feb 2011, R4pt0r_0079 wrote:

    81. At 9:51pm on 04 Feb 2011, Revrod wrote:
    My idea would be to put a total halt on all immigration into this Country for the next 5 years, while a true idea is made of how many people are actually here, legally or not, and either settling them properly, or deporting them.
    -------------------------------------

    You do realise that this means capping the immigration of highly skilled workers and skilled sponsored workers that have invited to come to the UK to work and in many ways contribute to your society and economy. Right now the Conservative government is targeting these tiers of visas (and students); I have no idea what they are doing regarding asylum seekers and refugees, nor do they seem to be actually doing much with regards to arresting real illegal immigrants.

    The UKBA website does indeed have news updates about arrests of illegal immigrants but if they really were concentrating their efforts on this crackdown, I'd expect the news feed to be nonstop if illegal immigration was as high as everyone claims it is. But seeing that the UKBA website only reports it once a few days, it seems that either illegal immigration isn't as high or UKBA and the police aren't really focusing their efforts on this despite what they claim.

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  • 85. At 09:17am on 05 Feb 2011, John1948 wrote:

    'Immigrants taking our jobs' what's the problem, if they are getting paid at least the National Minimum Wage? Perhaps they are better workers - employers seem to think so. I'm talking about major bus companies abd reputable companies, not just the dodgy fringes of the building trade.

    'They will accept wage rates lower than Brits' what's the problem, as I suspect with a less benevolaent benefit regieme that's what lots of Brits will have to do?

    'They are overloading the NHS and the education system.' This is a problem of numbers not race, so we could limit all families to two children as well as having controls of numbers. (By the way, some immigrants are allowed in on the condition that there is no recourse to public funds.)

    Even when we talk about integration into our society there are problems. Go into a city or town centre on a Friday or Saturday night - the mainly white crowd with girls being immodest (to the say the least!) and everyone the worse for drink creates a poor image of what it is to be British. Immigrants are stereotyped by many Brits, so it is not surprising they stereotype us too.

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  • 86. At 11:45am on 05 Feb 2011, blefuscu wrote:

    I work in Germany and read the German Press.

    The results of the survey do not agree with the statistics of other bodies.

    Germany, with its health insurance system based on contributions is a problem in that it is presented as insurance which builds entitlement. Immigrants are seen as not having paid in sufficiently over a working lifetime and therir demands are a cause of the declining 'services' (Leistungen) as the costs are borne by the insurance funds. The same with pensions.

    The figure in Germany, particularly for Moslem immigration, should be 70% expressing deep reservations.

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  • 87. At 11:57am on 05 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    40 and 48

    I find it very provocative that the BBC tolerates offensive statements about the British and British people on here and prevents a fair right of reply ... yet moderates out our comments relating to offensive remarks and reporting about the 'British'.

    The entire slant of this piece by Mark Easton seems designed to put an adverse portrayal of the British attitude towards UK mass immigration without making e.g. a proper and sensible, factual comparison of e.g. the number/%'s of available jobs - v - no of immigrants in each of the countries referred to. This is biased and misleading and in my view, is clearly intended to undermine the image of Britain, both at home and abroad, by the BBC. In journalistic terms, this is nothing more than a grotesque method of media based 'apologistic creep', in my view.

    Those who can't be bothered to defend the rights of British people in regard to a job stealing invasion will probably rue the day when they themselves are replaced by an immigrant, at some point in the future ... and even I would like to say .. I'd like to be a 'fly on the wall' for each one of you when it happens. You may laugh and think it won't happen to you ... may be not ... but what about your children and grand-children, if you're fortunate to have them?

    The continual, partial, ridiculous 'non-reporting' by the BBC of the real adverse affects of UK mass immigration must bring into question their impartiality, professionalism and loyalty to those who pay its licence fee and pay them all at the BBC, cushy jobs and expensive bullet proof pensions.

    I question whether the BBC is indeed in breach of its Charter and Licence with regard to its reporting of UK mass immigration and this should be reviewed as should the resolution in govt policy in terms of an equality test on govt policy regarding the current predicament of 14 million British people in terms of a stable UK job.

    Better still, the BBC should be reduced in size to create more competition in UK broadcasting... the BBC has become as 'over-sized' and dangerous to the UK as the worst of the greedy banks!

    A very dissatisfied licence fee payer!

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  • 88. At 12:04pm on 05 Feb 2011, blefuscu wrote:

    A recent survey suggested more than 30% of people believed the country was "overrun by foreigners".

    The study - by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation think-tank - also showed that roughly the same number thought that some 16 million of Germany's immigrants or people with foreign origins had come to the country for its social benefits.

    I refer you to Steve Evans' report from Berlin on your website:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11559451

    How does the Social Democrat linked Ebert Think Tank methodology and results differ from the survey upon which you, Mark, based your view that Britain had a 'psychological' problem not shared by others in Europe.? The Transatlantic trends methodology is poor.

    The concerns are widespread in Europe. In my view politicians are now playing catch-up as they realize what is coming down the road.

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  • 89. At 3:35pm on 05 Feb 2011, DestroytheEU wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 90. At 4:12pm on 05 Feb 2011, starFloridian wrote:

    As a legal immigrant into the U.S.A. from the U.K. might I suggest that the animosity towards immigrants on both sides of the Atlantic is directed only towards those who enter the countries illegally, in many cases becoming a drain on the social services they do not deserve to receive. Let them come, but only by the legal route, and we will welcome them as my family was welcomed into the U.S.A. many years ago.

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  • 91. At 10:22pm on 05 Feb 2011, maganarice wrote:

    When resources are limited people generally revert to type and point the finger of blame on the people who are different from them. However Britain i believe is more tolerant than reported. You have to remember that this issue is fulled by the hysteria of bad press especially the likes of the Daily Mail and the Sun, whose sole purpose seems to be the sale of as many papers on the back of poorly researched and unauthenticated stories that feeds the prejudice of people with a very strong sense of entitlement.

    In my country we have British Villages where only British people live and compounds around their offices where staff of British comapnies live. This is justified on security grounds, but the people who live in these compounds and villages never integrate into their community and only move from their offices to their homes until they returm to the UK. Most of these people never even bother to learn local languages, i can say this authoritatively because i work with them. British 'expatriates'also take jobs off local people thanks to the perception that 'White Man Knows Best'. Yet this seems acceptable even to the government.

    Move over to the UK and you are bombarded with talk of integration, learning English and other crap.

    1.Immigration is not bad and in my opinions is not a problem if it is managed properly.
    2.People have to remember that we live in a global village, where labour is mobile and dynamic and moves to where it is needed because nature abhors a vacuum, wherever this appears in the labour market it will be filled - people are so quick to forget this.
    3. A lot of the respondents here claim that immigration has not been good for the UK, but has it been BAD? Most immigrants (apart from a small number who have acqired Full british Citizenship)in this country do not have any recourse to public funds, hence they pay into a system that they cannot get much outand end up workingmuch harder than local people because they have no security blamkets at all when things go wrong.
    4. There is no country in the world that has developed solely on the back of its local labour.. people need to wake up to this.

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  • 92. At 00:32am on 06 Feb 2011, ecolizzy wrote:

    #91 And what percentage of british people live in your country? 2% or 3%?
    Or is it more?

    We have 20% foreign people living in England, quite a large proportion.

    Is that not enough maganarice?

    Would you like all us English to leave so that other nationalities might live here instead? I'm afraid we are very slow breeders, so gradually fading out. Someone told us there were too many people in the world, so we stopped having babies, but the labour party thought oh lets import millions more to replace the English, and that's what's happening now.

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  • 93. At 05:43am on 06 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:

    I can't understand why Easton is confused. Why doesn't he turn left out of the BBC TV gates walk down to Sheperds Bush and have a look around.

    Does it look or feel like England?

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  • 94. At 10:20am on 06 Feb 2011, slimjimbaxter wrote:

    Mark asks, "Why are we so concerned about immigration?" I suggest that if he moves house and goes to live in certain areas of Birmingham, Bradford, Leicester, Burnley and much of Inner London he will find the answer to his own question. The problem Mark, is that your own PC bias makes it impossible for you to write an honest and objective piece on immigration matters.

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  • 95. At 11:03am on 06 Feb 2011, davidmelamedoff wrote:

    Having worked the last eleven years in France, maybe I can add to the debate from a French perspective. Here, immigrants and their children who visibly retain links with their original culture are housed in estates or ‘cités’ built well away from the native population. The system works through the town mayor who in France has considerable authority. The ‘maire’, through his council committee, ensures that the better council housing (which continues to be built and is of a very high standard) is allocated to local civil servants, teachers and other ‘socially useful’ cadres who may be of immigrant origin but who behave as if completely French. The rest go into mostly unpleasant and remote tower blocks and are generally either unemployed or consigned to menial labour. Having worked as an HR Director in a very large French corporation, I can testify to wide-spread indirect discrimination (a notion unknown in French law) ensuring employment only for uni-cultural French people. They can include coloured people as long as they clearly eschew any link to another culture. There is no equivalent to, for example, ‘British Indian’.

    The immigrants known personally to indigenous French people are therefore those who have achieved, or appear to have achieved total assimilation. This would explain polls showing relative tolerance towards them. Immigrants or their children who retain links with their original culture, despite being French passport holders, are regarded as ‘étrangers’ or foreigners, to be dealt with only when their frustration turns to violence.

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  • 96. At 11:12am on 06 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    85. At 09:17am on 05 Feb 2011, Boilerbill wrote:
    'Immigrants taking our jobs' what's the problem, if they are getting paid at least the National Minimum Wage? Perhaps they are better workers - employers seem to think so. I'm talking about major bus companies abd reputable companies, not just the dodgy fringes of the building trade.
    ----------------------
    The problem is an unemployed Pole costs the the UK taxpayer absolutely nothing. An unemployed Brit cost the taxpayer serveral thousand pounds a year. British workers living expenses are far greater.A Pole can get paid less, live 5 to a room, and have a massive amount of money when they return to Poland to spend the cash .Employers who employ cheap foreign labour just claim they are better workers so they can pay less and expect the taxpayer to pick to the tab.

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  • 97. At 11:20am on 06 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    47. At 1:08pm on 04 Feb 2011, Matt_Hertfordshire1 wrote:
    @nautonier you're funny. You have to be tongue in cheek surely. Especially with so little fact to back up your very very very very long rant.So you'd throw out every other foreign national residing in the UK and then only accept Innuit people, Brazilians or Mexicans??? Intersting immigration policy. Well I'd best pack my bags and go back to New Zealand then. Yessiree no one has dared immigrate to New Zealand...... thats if you don't count the 85.7% of the current population who currently class themselves of British descent or as full British nationals. Or the 97.2% of New Zealand population who can't speak any other language apart from English. Amazing considering the country has two official languages. Guess you don't even know what the one would be without Google-ing it.
    ------
    The interesting thing about New Zealand is the Maoris arrived several hundreds of years after the anglo-saxon settlement of England. Maoris are classed as an indigenous people. The English are not.

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  • 98. At 11:23am on 06 Feb 2011, AJS wrote:

    Offer a Sun reader the kind of job many immigrants actually do, and they'd be disgusted. The fact is, they do jobs that some Britons think are beneath them.

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  • 99. At 11:28am on 06 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    69. At 3:36pm on 04 Feb 2011, BluesBerry wrote:
    Do immigrants destroy "national culture".
    No.
    ----------
    Get off a train in York. Then get of a train in Bradford, a mere 30 miles away. Then say that with a straight face.

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  • 100. At 11:40am on 06 Feb 2011, Shaunie Babes wrote:

    91. At 10:22pm on 05 Feb 2011, maganarice wrote:
    4. There is no country in the world that has developed solely on the back of its local labour.. people need to wake up to this.
    -------
    Care to point out the mass immigration that happened prior to the British Industrial Revolution, or Germany in the 50s, Japan in the 60s, Korea in th 90s, China for the last 20 years, Indian for the last 10, the USSR in the 1930s ?
    Or indeed the massive technological progress Islam has given our high-tech industries ?

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  • 101. At 1:59pm on 06 Feb 2011, El_Barbero wrote:

    At nearing 100 posts I am left a little confused with some of the arguements put forward so far, or rather the abject failure to recognise the true problem.

    Aparently, to some, the former British Empire caused such resentment that it persists to this day. Totaly ignoring the fact that resentment of imigration into the UK is just the same (in reverse) yet is somehow wrong. New logic chip required.

    Some believe that the enslavery of their forfathers grants them special consideration. Ignorng not only the facts that it was not only not themselves that were enslaved but that it was at least 4 generations past. But perhaps more importantly that by far the greater number were sold into slavery by the tribal leaders.

    Others believe that WW2 was fought to defend the English way of life. Strange that Britain declared war with Germany because of the German invasion of Poland, swiftly followed by the invasion of other countries. Not to mention the formation of the Axis with Japan which wreaked havoc throughout the Far-East.

    The race card is often used by both sides in these discussions. In fact I don't think there is much true racialism anywhere. Much of what is claimed to be racism is in reality resentment. Resentment rooted in the perception of preferential treatment which could be real or imagined. The Race Relations Act 1976 although designed to remove inequality in fact did nothing more than to cement and polarized these arguements into their respective positions and caused more harm than good, as it was always going to.

    The sooner these people loose their victim mentality the better. They will be better as human beings, have more cogent arguements and hopefully society will move forward.

    Personally I have nothing against imigration. I do however believe that unfettered imigration (in all it's forms) causes far too many problems.

    Asylum Seeker/Refugee - Under International Convention asylum/refuge must be sought at the first safe haven (country). Given the current politial situation of europe Britain could only have very few if any imigrants in this catagory. Yet there were 25,670 applications in 2008 alone.

    Illegal Imigrants - Sorry but they are illegal so out they go. The truth is a very sad and sorry situation in so far as the figures vary wildly and seem to indicate that there is very little control. Many, when caught/discovered then appeal to stay for various reasons and are allowed to do so. I don't see how this can happen when their status is illegal.

    Legal Imigrant - All well and good by me, except for one, and only one condition, the clear and demonstrable willingness and intent to integrate into your new homeland. And this one exception is where many recent (last 40 years) imigrants fail. It is for the imigrant to integrate not the host nation, and it really is that simple. Whether you like it or not human nature is tribal. If you really think you can move into a different tribe without accepting their traditions you are doomed to failure.

    I care little that you may be offended by that simple truth. The fact that I might be causing you offence being in itself a criminal act should clearly demonstrate the truth of the matter.

    I myself am an emigree, having moved to Spain some years ago. My language skills are moderate but my wife and I have a great deal of respect from the local community. Not because we have a lot of money, because we don't. Not bcause we are fluent in the languge, because we aren't. We have the respect and friendship of the local community for the fact the we respect the people, their culture and traditions, we pay our taxes and social security and do not seek to alter thir culture in any way, it is after all the reason we are here.

    Cameron this weekend has stated that multiculturalism has failed. Of course it has. It never even got off the ground, it never had a chance, because it flies in the face of human nature. What kind of fool believes that a couple of hundred thousand years of tribal thinking can be wiped out by the passing of a couple of statutes, apparently in the UK there have been, and there still are, quite a few.

    I have a great hope that people the world over can become as one but it would take some very serious event for this to happen quickly. Other than that it will take many hundreds of years, if not thousands. It can only be achieved with the willingness of the people. Not the will of businessmen or politicians and not the force of law as they drive us apart.


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  • 102. At 2:02pm on 06 Feb 2011, peevedoff wrote:

    We are an island and therefore unlike other parts of Europe and the world we feel more close in with a very uncomfortable situation.I think the numbers are vastly underestimated though and infact much greater when it comes to the negatives of immigration.Its always the number one topic along with crime and the general erosion of our British identity.Too many do-gooders putting free thinking people down and destroying freedom of speech through so called human rights advocates and politically correct cowards who cannot face opinions they do not like.Put it all together and yes most of us brits hate the immigration policies of this country and how they have been used against us in favour of illegals and criminals who come here to exploit our generosity.If the government will not deal with it then we the masses will and also the so called human rights and P.C advocates who are no more than traitors to this nation.

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  • 103. At 3:25pm on 06 Feb 2011, ROBSON wrote:

    Canada has historically been a country which has welcomed many legal immigrants and genuine refugees in the past, who in turn worked hard to contribute to Canadian society.
    I'm not sure which particular 'think-tank' provided the statistics for Canada, but they do not reflect the current majority mood in the country concerning legal and illegal immigration and 'fake' refugees.
    Analyzing stats. from census returns, it has been estimated by academics that fewer than 20% of recent legal immigrants provide a net financial gain to Canada. In addition, there are those who are covert and overt terrorists and are trying to overthrow our humanitarian society, which (mistakenly) welcomed them in the first place!
    Our health-care system has been inundated by waves of elderly parents and grandparents of recent immigrants(last 20 years), who were brought in for political(voting), not economic reasons. Benefit fraud is rampant; collecting benefits, financed by working taxpayers, while living in taxpayer-subsidized housing and at the same time working for cash, hence not paying any income taxes themselves.
    Plus we have a huge politically-correct lawyer-fuelled immigration and refugee industry,who label critics as racists and bigots, in order to silence and prevent any legitimate investigation,discussion and criticism concerning this issue.
    However, even the MSM in Canada has now started to discuss some of the more sensitive issues around this topic.


    Funny thing is we generally look to the UK as the bad example, in that we often use the phrase " if we are not careful we will end up in the same mess as the UK. This old discussion which is squashed by the PC multicultural zealots is the overwhelming reason most of us expats are delighted to be Canadian now.

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  • 104. At 3:51pm on 06 Feb 2011, mrsbloggs13c2 wrote:

    The methodology of the study has not been questioned.

    Apparently 1000 people were 'randomly' called in each country.

    Is this sufficient to extrapolate to national moods or opinions? Perhaps, statistically speaking but when you consider that

    a) the whole of the UK could be geographically stuffed into Pennsylvania which has a population of 15 million and London contains more than 10% of the UK population
    b) the approach to health care, pensions, social services and benefits varies substantially nation to nation
    c) there's a difference between legal and illegal immigration, citizenship and a right to remain
    d)the tax obligations of migrants varies
    e) the approach to legal immigration varies nation to nation including approach to extended family members
    f)birth rates vary between and within nations
    g)access to and nature of social housing and rental sector varies


    it might be right to question whether national comparisons can be made in this way.

    As a simple example, in the US, its difficult to get access to any 'services' without a social security number. In fact even to qualify for Medicaid, run at the state level, you will need to provide a social security number - you have to be legal. In addition, you have to build up credits to get retirement, disability, survivors or medicare benefits at appropriate ages from social security.

    Another example is that much of the cost of education in the US is funded at the state, county or local level, not federally. The response you might get from North Dakotan residents might be different from those in Texas or Arizona where illegal immigration numbers are different.

    Another example might be the tax treatment of residents that aren't citizens. In the US, if you are resident for tax purposes, you will be taxed on you world wide income. In the UK, you can avoid this by taking the option to pay 30,000 up front per annum.

    Finally, Mark Easton has been selective in his choice of issues to discuss. For example, the question posed in the survey regarding whether immigrants affect crime in society or the questions regarding assimilation or even that in the text there is a parargraph headed 'Majorities in all countries think that immigrants are a fiscal burden'. He too has extrapolated. His piece is a derivative of a derivative.

    And to be frank, to suggest that because 23% of 1000 respondents think that immigration is the biggest issue, I'd refer him to the 77% that do not. In fact one could have written this article in a completely different way.

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  • 105. At 4:05pm on 06 Feb 2011, davidmelamedoff wrote:

    Is it politically incorrect to expect those who claim true British ancestry, those who detect an anti-British conspiracy supported by a fifth column led by the BBC, those who inveigh against immigrants, that they respect sufficiently their own language to master its grammar and spelling? To do so might help in defining more precisely the British values to which the nation’s newcomers are expected to adhere. Perhaps they should include the command of English?

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  • 106. At 10:39pm on 06 Feb 2011, anstie wrote:

    #32 Spinusthetruth says we have been ruined by 'socialist policies'.
    Eh? I wish!

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  • 107. At 10:34am on 07 Feb 2011, busby2 wrote:

    20. At 06:25am on 04 Feb 2011, laughingjkings wrote:
    My partner moved to the UK from France, and is a qualified professional - funny how it's OK for 200,000 Brits to live in France and 1,000,000+ to live in Spain. We have shown ourselves to be a nation of hypocrites, taking the advantages of foreign travel, investments and holidays as well as buying holiday homes in France and Spain but balk at the idea that people may want to work here! However, this does not excuse the failure of successive British governments to invest in UK plc and create more jobs. However, it also demonstrates that British people should have spent more time learning a foreign language so that they can go and work in other EU countries.

    Your views are sadly typical of the liberal intellectual wishey washy muddled thinking of a section of the educated elite.

    You describe your partner as a qualified profeesional living in France. Neither or or your partner are a burden on the state, in fact you make France wealthier. You pay your taxes, do not claim benefit or live in social housing. I suspect that is true for most British expats abroad as those who don't succeed come home.

    However the story of immigration to the UK mirrors that of Canada as described by englishexpat

    Analyzing stats. from census returns, it has been estimated by academics that fewer than 20% of recent legal immigrants provide a net financial gain to Canada. In addition, there are those who are covert and overt terrorists and are trying to overthrow our humanitarian society, which (mistakenly) welcomed them in the first place!
    Our health-care system has been inundated by waves of elderly parents and grandparents of recent immigrants(last 20 years), who were brought in for political(voting), not economic reasons. Benefit fraud is rampant; collecting benefits, financed by working taxpayers, while living in taxpayer-subsidized housing and at the same time working for cash, hence not paying any income taxes themselves.
    Plus we have a huge politically-correct lawyer-fuelled immigration and refugee industry,who label critics as racists and bigots, in order to silence and prevent any legitimate investigation,discussion and criticism concerning this issue.
    However, even the MSM in Canada has now started to discuss some of the more sensitive issues around this topic.


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  • 108. At 12:00pm on 07 Feb 2011, HardWorkingHobbes wrote:

    For everyone saying that workers paid at the minimum wage contribute to the UK economy, it's actually not the case.

    If you take all government expenditure and split it between taxpayers you only pay for 'your share' when your just about to start becomming a higher rate taxpayer.

    So for every immigrant working a mimimum wage job a high rate taxpayer has to pay more to subsidise their share of the police, schools, healthcare, defense...

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  • 109. At 04:00am on 08 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:

    Easton/New Labour/BBC Elitists have a lot to answer for:

    1) Uncontrolled immigration both legal & illegal

    2) Making being unemployed on benefit a career choice so many English people have chosen not to work.

    3) Unchecked immigration. I work in NZ, I have to provide full police records & medical records everytime I renew my work visa. I have no problem with this or with being removed if I don't comply. I have never seen this system operate in UK. Just turn up, in you come...

    4) Anyone who opposes uncontrolled immigration is branded racist.

    5) Too late to shut the gate.

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  • 110. At 10:46am on 08 Feb 2011, Andy wrote:

    "Why are we so concerned about immigration?"

    Brits are always concerned about "others" getting on better than "us", it's the keeping-up-with-the-Jones's mindset.

    Brits also like to operate a closed-shop so they can rest on their laurals.

    Imigration messes all that up, ergo, they're up in arm(chair)s about it.

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  • 111. At 10:57am on 08 Feb 2011, Stevem65 wrote:

    "109. At 04:00am on 08 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:
    Easton/New Labour/BBC Elitists have a lot to answer for:

    3) Unchecked immigration. I work in NZ, I have to provide full police records & medical records everytime I renew my work visa. I have no problem with this or with being removed if I don't comply. I have never seen this system operate in UK. Just turn up, in you come...."

    If we leave aside the EU, your last statement is just not true.

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  • 112. At 6:04pm on 08 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:

    Stevem65: so you are saying all immigrants into the UK have supplied full police & medical checks? And if refused entry they are deported immediately at the border? I don't think so. Have a look around or visit Australia or New Zealand to see how border control should operate...

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  • 113. At 9:01pm on 08 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    Why are we so concerned about the way in which the BBC reports mass UK immigration?

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  • 114. At 9:56pm on 08 Feb 2011, Toby wrote:

    The discourse on immigration in this country is nauseating.

    The survey shows that %46 of Brits think that %10.8 of the population being born abroad is too much.

    Thats the top and bottom of it.

    When the UK census 2011 results are published what proportion of the UK population will describe themselves as ethnically not "White-British" ??

    Then look at the proportion not "White British" under the age of 35 in 2011.

    Then think what will the majority of the British population be describing itself as in 35 years time.

    Then you will see why the CURRENT majority are 'so concerned about immigration'.

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  • 115. At 04:13am on 09 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:

    Mass immigration was the result of losing so many of own people fighting 2 world wars.

    It has been continued unchecked because the previous government gave our people the option of staying at home & not working for a living.

    And a continued supply of new voters for their party...

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  • 116. At 4:19pm on 09 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    115. At 04:13am on 09 Feb 2011, SouthsNZ wrote:

    Mass immigration was the result of losing so many of own people fighting 2 world wars.

    It has been continued unchecked because the previous government gave our people the option of staying at home & not working for a living.

    And a continued supply of new voters for their party...

    ......................

    That is largely untrue.

    In the 1950's and 1960's Britian had periods when it had genuine labour shortages and some immigrants were issued with British passports in their country of origin; as having been encouraged to emigrate to the UK by the British authorities. That did not cause problems in terms of numbers as the integration of these immigrants was sustainable in terms of unemployment, housing, education, population levels, skill distribution etc.

    The problems with immigration from 1970's onwards have largely been the result of Labour govt social policy high level immigration 'experiments' and deliberate policies of having higher levels of non EU immigration than the UK could sustain coupled with the combined effect of the EU social chapter on immigration.

    Immigration has never continued unchecked over time ... it has always ebbed and flowed over time in terms of of numbers, as largely reflecting whether it is managed or not and the availability of 'handouts' ... but the countrty is now in a mess with 14 million adults in Britian now not having /needing a secure and sufficient personal income ... what we have now is completely different to what we've had in the 50's/60's/70's/80's/90's and even most of the noughties ... because our economy is bust with trillions and trillions of pounds in debts, deficits and future liabilities and our grandchildren will be picking up the tab for it.

    With immigration ... we must get our facts right and this includes the BBC.



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  • 117. At 5:19pm on 09 Feb 2011, Hundred House wrote:

    Mark Easton's report is funadamentally flawed.

    First off - he isn't reporting, he's lecturing.

    Also, He's assuming immigration is good, and lamenting the fact that most people don't understand that.

    And he's trying to paint a picture in which immigration is not only good, but understood by everyone but the average Brit as being good. The UK, it would appear from this report, is the ONLY country in which immigration is a major concern.

    Yet anyone who follows European news or travels in Europe knows that immigration is a cause of growing hostility throughout Europe.

    Fr Merckel admitted multiculturalism had failed back in October. The BBC itself reported just yesterday about the growth - especially among educated young people - in popularity of the anti-immigration party in Denmark.

    There are significant anti-immmigration parties in the likes of Austria, Belgium, Holland, Denmark and now even Sweden.

    The BBC line, as shown by the tone and content of Mark Easton's report, has always been that the British opposition to immigration is unique, and based on our ingrained racism.

    The problem for Mark Easton is, the opposition is widespread in countries like Denmark and Sweden and Holland - highly liberal, highly educated.

    It was revealing that on yesterday's report from Denmark and Sweden, the locals who opposed immigration could all speak perfect English - the BBC reporter couldn't even pronounce Malmö.

    But at least the report from Denmark admitted what Mr Easton seems to be in denial about - young people aren't afraid of what they don't know. They are against immigration because they do know it.

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  • 118. At 5:30pm on 09 Feb 2011, Hundred House wrote:

    //105. At 4:05pm on 06 Feb 2011, davidmelamedoff wrote:
    Is it politically incorrect to expect those who claim true British ancestry, those who detect an anti-British conspiracy supported by a fifth column led by the BBC, those who inveigh against immigrants, that they respect sufficiently their own language to master its grammar and spelling? To do so might help in defining more precisely the British values to which the nation’s newcomers are expected to adhere. Perhaps they should include the command of English?//

    I've got a very good command of English and a number of other languages.

    And like many highly-educated Scandinavians, Dutch people, Belgians etc, I am strongly opposed to immigration.

    More to the point, I can make arguments to support my case, rather than making irrelevant points. You are doing the typical BBC/pro-immigrant thing, of assuming that those who oppose immigration are too stupid to see how good it is, and will come round eventually.

    Mark Easton's reporting reflects that attitude, and it leads him to ignore some Inconvenient Truths. He is trying to portray anti-immigration feeling as wrong, and based on ignorance and ingrained intolerance.

    If he didn't know about the strong and growing opposition in the likes of Denmark, he should have. If he knew, and chose to ignore it, there have to be doubts about his reliability as a reporter.

    And he chose to blame 'us' for what 'we' did in 1290. Making a blanket statement about, say, muslims, based on what some of them have done in the last few years is regarded as racist. Yet making a blanket statement about us based on what happened here in 1290 seems to be ok. Odd.

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  • 119. At 09:09am on 10 Feb 2011, davidmelamedoff wrote:

    There is the long term and the short term. Without immigration Britain, or more specifically England given Mark Easton’s Plantagenet reference, would have evolved somewhat differently since 1290. The Huguenots would not have escaped persecution to create whole new sectors of English industry. We would not have called upon William of Orange to save the protestant succession and we wouldn’t have built the hugely expensive Blenheim palace. Georg Handel would have remained in Hanover.

    More recently, ‘stop and go’ has particularly characterised the performance of the British economy and after a debt driven boom, we are now in an almighty bust. With rising unemployment, even more so amongst the young, it is economically justified to curtail immigration. However, to fuel future growth we still need to import special skills for example in engineering, or in the management of complex programmes. And when finally the pain is done, when we have built a better future and perhaps even moved into Churchill’s broad, sunlit uplands, we will find that we still need immigrants to support our ageing demographics.

    The debate needs to be about what ensures successful longer term integration. Full employment, security and a degree of prosperity are essential but not sufficient. With nothing else to bring us together, we risk becoming a geographic entity populated by mutually suspicious autonomous communities. Yet it seems to me that virtually all the British share certain beliefs they seem unable to express. Would it not serve to examine them? Are not the British of immigrant origins as British as anyone else if they believe in parliamentary democracy, in equality under the law, in an independent judiciary, in freedom of speech, in tolerance? Are these not the values we should expect newcomers to abide by? And if they do, do they not strengthen and enrich the essential nature of being British?

    I suggest that the debate should be about further defining these values and about making them explicit. Would this not be a good subject for the BBC to explore?

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  • 120. At 10:40am on 10 Feb 2011, Hundred House wrote:

    //119. At 09:09am on 10 Feb 2011, davidmelamedoff wrote:
    There is the long term and the short term. Without immigration Britain, or more specifically England given Mark Easton’s Plantagenet reference, would have evolved somewhat differently since 1290. The Huguenots would not have escaped persecution to create whole new sectors of English industry. We would not have called upon William of Orange to save the protestant succession and we wouldn’t have built the hugely expensive Blenheim palace. Georg Handel would have remained in Hanover.

    More recently, ‘stop and go’ has particularly characterised the performance of the British economy and after a debt driven boom, we are now in an almighty bust. With rising unemployment, even more so amongst the young, it is economically justified to curtail immigration. However, to fuel future growth we still need to import special skills for example in engineering, or in the management of complex programmes. And when finally the pain is done, when we have built a better future and perhaps even moved into Churchill’s broad, sunlit uplands, we will find that we still need immigrants to support our ageing demographics.

    The debate needs to be about what ensures successful longer term integration. Full employment, security and a degree of prosperity are essential but not sufficient. With nothing else to bring us together, we risk becoming a geographic entity populated by mutually suspicious autonomous communities. Yet it seems to me that virtually all the British share certain beliefs they seem unable to express. Would it not serve to examine them? Are not the British of immigrant origins as British as anyone else if they believe in parliamentary democracy, in equality under the law, in an independent judiciary, in freedom of speech, in tolerance? Are these not the values we should expect newcomers to abide by? And if they do, do they not strengthen and enrich the essential nature of being British?

    I suggest that the debate should be about further defining these values and about making them explicit. Would this not be a good subject for the BBC to explore?//

    Interesting points, but it's ground that's been gone over already. In effect, most BBC coverage is based on the pro-immigration view that mass immigration and multiculturalism are good, but there might be problems with some of the details.

    In reality, however, the whole policy is fundamentally flawed. It's not a question of exploring how to make it work. It's more a question of examining why some people thought it would work in the first place.

    It's not a question of telling people in highly-educated and tolerant countries in west Europe that they are wrong to reject the mass immigration and multiculturalism that the élites have foisted on them. What's really needed is an admission that it's been a huge and predictable disaster.

    The only real discussion is about how to put a halt to the policy and reverse some of the damage done, by better border control, real and strict limits on immigration, and genuine efforts to get rid of illegals failed asylum seekers, etc.

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  • 121. At 12:11pm on 10 Feb 2011, SpeakerToAnimals wrote:

    Interesting to see what many here are using as 'evidence' fo their being too many immigrants -- inner cities. Hardly representative, and inner cities are doing what they always did, it's where the poor and disadvantaged end-up, be it irish, blacks, or immigrants from india, bangladesh, iran, turkey, wherever. It's perfectly natural, don't brits moving to spain do exactly the same? You go and live where there are people you are familiar with, where there are shops that sell the food you are used to.

    Unless all the brits in spain start speaking spanish, living in spanish towns and villages, and eating spanish food, then we can't really complain about immigrants to britain doing a similar thing.

    Although I'd like to see the reaction if there were a mass exodus to the countryside -- women in burkas invade sleepy cotswold villages and frighten the cows would probably be the line in the Daily Mail, Muslims try to take over the Archers.........................

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  • 122. At 7:04pm on 10 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    121. At 12:11pm on 10 Feb 2011, SpeakerToAnimals wrote:

    Unless all the brits in spain start speaking spanish, living in spanish towns and villages, and eating spanish food, then we can't really complain about immigrants to britain doing a similar thing.

    .......................

    Most British people living in Spain do learn Spanish and fully support themselves with pensions etc and Spain is large in land area compared to the UK ... and most, if not all live their because they really like Spain, Spanish people, Spanish food and have great respect for all things Spanish including its wildlife and animals.

    Its called getting one's facts right and avoiding the chucking about of stereotypes to villify the British at every opportunity.

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  • 123. At 08:07am on 11 Feb 2011, AllenT2 wrote:

    It's pretty obvious that that web site is biased towards immigration, including illegal immigration. It goes out of its way to draw conclusions about immigration by downplaying illegal immigration when it is clear that most people, in America at least, are concerned about illegal immigration. If they included the key word illegal in many of the questions asked then I can guarantee you, especially in the case of America, the conclusions would be very obviously against illegal immigration.

    When they do bring up the word illegal it is typically in the context of how those people can be hurt in one way or another. It is a dishonest method designed to draw sympathy and skew the overall impressions and conclusions.

    By the way, I think Mr. Easton is equally biased.


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  • 124. At 4:01pm on 11 Feb 2011, Luketerr wrote:

    On a separate news article The Muslim Brotherhood's leader was just speaking from his house in The UK....really u have such a groups leadership ??? UK is now the hotbed after Pakistan ....We that do not belong to that country hv been complaining about this for a long time....Keep watchin :-)

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  • 125. At 03:46am on 12 Feb 2011, Geoffrey wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 126. At 07:59am on 12 Feb 2011, Geoffrey wrote:

    Lots of interesting opinions here, but I was interested in the actual report and data on which the article was based. So I had a look. I found two things very interesting.

    First is a terminological issue. I found the questions with choices like "citizens" or "citizens and legal immigrants" a bit confusing. There doesn't seem to be a specific definition of "immigrant" in the report. However, the percentage pop. figures for immigrants are taken from OECD data and the definition of immigrant there is "foreign-born population". That means that the many people can be immigrants and citizens as well. (I myself am an Australian citizen, and an immigrant, and foreign-born.) So how can the respondents have had made a consistent choice between "citizens" or "citizens and legal immigrants"?

    The second point refers to the table on "too many immigrants". How can the data be compared between countries whithout making assumptions about what "too many" means in each country? There seems to be a tacit assumption that "too many" is related to the proportion of immigrants, But it could be argued that since, for instance, the US and Canada are both countries that have been created by immigration in recent times, whereas the European countries have very ancient origins, the acceptable maximum might be higher in the former than in the latter.

    Another possible measure is the rate of increase of immigrants rather than just the percenatages. I tried calculating this against the online data from the OECD web site, the results were interesting. Below are the ratios of the 2008/1999 immigrant pops. for the nations in the report.

    Italy - no data series given in the report.
    NB: Germany only has figs. for 1999 - 2003 (the 12.9% of population is the 2003 figure.) As an estimate I doubled the 1999/2003 increase of 1.04 to 1.08 for 2008:

    Canada 1.13
    Germany 1.08 (est)
    Netherlands 1.11
    France 1.15
    USA 1.30
    Spain 3.82
    UK 1.42

    The results show that the US and UK have experienced three to four times the percentage increase in immigrants of Fr. Can. Ger. and Neth. over the 10 years while Spain is "off the scale" with a four times increase in actual *numbers* of immigrants!

    Interesting?

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  • 127. At 01:16am on 13 Feb 2011, twistywillow wrote:

    I don't have a problem with 'immigrants' how can I? I am married to one, albeit an Antipodean one but an immigrant just the same. Some could say the difference between my husband and my neighbours is the difference between tomarto and tomayto and yes that would be right in pro open borders Europe. The differences are subtle, he didn't come here to work and send money home, he came because he is my husband and settle here and long term become a member of the country and our community.
    Our EU neighbours have not, nor have our Asian neighbours. I am not a racist, far from it actually, but I do see the differences that are changing where we live and that local hostility towards the newcomers isn't just perceived because of any threat or mistrust, it is real because most (not all) are not here to integrate or be part of society or our community. And that is what is causing the problems. There are clique little areas which are no go for locals, not because of any threat, or malicious intent,but due to the number of shops and restaurants that are in various EU languages. I don't speak Polish so why would I go into a Polish deli where all the signs are in Polish for instance.
    As a result the migrants have also kept to the same area, thats where the shops are they feel most at home in.Thats fair enough, its the same in anywhere, we all gravitate towards our own culture. That is one example of lack of integration and mixed society, the PM is right, multiculturalism has failed, but due to bad local town planning I suggest it never got off the doormat because town planners have not spread the communities out enough. It is actually a huge missed opportunity and now probably too late to rectify.
    My second point is the sheer volume of people who are here. Its not one or two and locals welcoming newcomers with open arms and the Oh you are from Russia, wow how wonderful, no, its oh no, not another person we cannot converse with and the doors are shut. In my vicinity, of 14 houses, 6 are housing foreign nationals from the EU.
    Again this is not a perceived migrant influx but a real one. That is repeated all over the area, so what impact does that have on local communities and schools and doctors? Again I would have no issue if the people wanted to integrate, or attempted to.
    But the last one, this is the one that really gets to me. Work.
    There are no jobs here, unless you want part time or can work for a foreign work agency in factories or farms. The traditional land work local men (and women) used to do, is now done by agency (read gangmaster) employed staff. Local men and women are being forced from the market place and into any part time work they can find. Yes, that includes my husband who before we moved here worked full time, we got a transfer here (to be near family) and the job disappeared and for the past 6 years his hours have gone from 30 to 25 to 16 flat hours a week. If he tries to get another job to supplement the first he is told sorry mate, you already work elsewhere. And that is why migration from the EU has to stop. Our locally available work in traditional industries are going to workers who are probably cheaper, and now because factories are geared towards their needs, local people are not likely to be employed unless they can speak one or other EU language.
    If the UK HAS the jobs for its own people, enough so people like us don't have to exist on tax credits and on a proper working week, and has a surplus market then great more workers, the more the merrier, but we don't, and sorry but we should be looking to our own people first and not EU economic migrants, they are their own countries responsibility. My husband as I said, is a migrant,so yes all this could be considered my throwing stones in a glass house, but the difference is we are a family, a multicultural family and not here for the work or to send money out, we live and breathe the UK, our children also, whilst aware of their heritage, are British. All I want is for my husband to have a decent wage and a proper job so we can come off tax credits. This country is becoming morally poor and depressing and when you cannot even say good morning to a neighbour because they havent a clue what you are saying,or dont want to know, then something is very wrong indeed...simply, where did all the British go?

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  • 128. At 09:08am on 13 Feb 2011, DBak wrote:

    The previous British government, or those representing the government were engaged in other countries, advertising for immigrants and outlining the benefits they could claim once they arrived. Add to that the free NHS and one might wonder who's money was being used for this dilution of the British populace - who were being INFORMED - that Britain was now a multicultural society, if you object you will be deemed racist and xenophobic...so be quiet!
    The public are bound to rail against such arrogance. More so when there are no other countries which offer such generous benefits its citizens are being ordered to provide via taxation.

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  • 129. At 2:05pm on 13 Feb 2011, alan wrote:

    I am an English person who is living in the Dordogne part of France and which is home to about 50000 British residents (about 5 percent of the population of Dordogne). We get on extremely well with our French neighbours at a social and personal level, and many English have French spouses. Nearly all of us have close French friends.
    I consider that the majority of us have worked hard to integrate and become actively involved with the French and local life.
    To illustrate this, my English friends and myself are engaged, together with our French friends, in hospital visiting, participation in French/British choirs, staging concerts, serving on village committees, fundraising for (and in some cases running) french charities, hosting a local radio program and helping to organize local social events. Last Christmas, for example, we staged two shows for the local two primary schools and sang carols around the villages.and in the local nursing home.
    Most of us speak at least a little French and some are fluent.
    We get no special treatment from the French authorities, all official documents are in French, all meetings with official bodies are in French. The only concession I have seen is a poster in English reminding us that income tax returns must be submitted on time to avoid a large penalty. The French health system can only be accessed by submitting a French income tax assessment proving that income tax has been paid in previous tax years. Similarly social benefits can only be obtained after submitting proof of prior payment of social security contributions and income tax.
    The French and the British are culturally very close - we like the same type of food, leisure activities, music. The British do not form large monocultural ghettos and are represented in low concentrations in modest sized French communities. We pay our income tax, social security contributions and residency tax and do not expect to live at the expense of our French hosts.
    Some of the ignorant and vindictive posts (against British immigrants) here and frequently in other threads, describe a completely false picture of the relationship of the French and British communities to each other here in France.
    I suspect that the reality of the relationship of the immigrant community in Britain to the host is completely different to the excellent relationship we British have to our French hosts.

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  • 130. At 05:15am on 15 Feb 2011, AllenT2 wrote:

    Geoffrey wrote:

    "The second point refers to the table on "too many immigrants". How can the data be compared between countries whithout making assumptions about what "too many" means in each country? There seems to be a tacit assumption that "too many" is related to the proportion of immigrants, But it could be argued that since, for instance, the US and Canada are both countries that have been created by immigration in recent times, whereas the European countries have very ancient origins, the acceptable maximum might be higher in the former than in the latter. "

    It "could be argued" that once someone is born in a particular place they are no longer immigrants of that place so the "ancient origins" thing is meaningless when making comparisons to "European countries."

    Ultimately, all countries are "created by immigration" since people are always moving from one place to another.

    The thing that poll does, skewing the results, is to downplay and often ignore illegal immigration, as I previously said.

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  • 131. At 1:00pm on 17 Feb 2011, stevie2steaks wrote:

    Its interesting to see a number of comments about the English (expats) living in other Countries and perhaps we should have more consideration for the people aspiring to do the same in our country, as an ex expat I believe the larger issue being discussed here is that it does not matter who lives where, you will always find that groups of the same religion/nationality/football supporters etc will grvitate towards each other, hence, huge communitees of Brits in Spain with thier own churches, bars, shops etc and little interaction with the indeginous population. This is the way of people all around the world and with this kind of behaviour they are exposing themselves to a perception that they are different, dont want to be inclusive, disrespect the local culture and people become angry and supicious of this happening in thier own country, however, the point about the muslim culture doing all of the above is compounded by the fact they seem to not want to just live in the UK according how they wish to, but to change our culture to suit them by demanding we respect there culturural/religeous needs and this is too much. I have lived in many Countries but yet to see one where I could publicly demand they change to suit my needs, and because i recognised that the counrty I lived in did not suit my needs, this is why I left and came home in the end. Everyone has the same choice.

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  • 132. At 7:58pm on 17 Feb 2011, juliet50 wrote:

    I would say it is probably because we are one of the most populated countries in the world for the tiny amount of space we have. This is the cause of much of the antipathy along with the statistics published showing most of the recent jobs in the last decade have gone to immigrants. The reason why of course is that they are generally harder workers than the British but that does not wash with many who feel unemployed should get off their backsides and be doing these jobs instead and only when every British person has a job should we be letting more in. The media doesn't help either with publishing stories every day of asylum seekers draining our welfare system.

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  • 133. At 12:37pm on 19 Feb 2011, bigsammyb wrote:

    People have a beef with asylum seekers in this country and with good reason.

    By definition nobody coming to this country pleading asylum is genuinely an asylum seeker. Unless of course they travelled by air and this was the first country they got too, which is rare.

    If you are fleeing persecution then you would plead asylum in the fist safe country you got too. But they don't. They travel through several safe EU countries ie: italy germany and france and then come over here.

    Well the fact they ar here proves they are not asylum seekers.

    It seems our government has deliberatly encouraged immigration to make up for the shortfall in labour. We are an ageing population and so need young peope from the third world to pay taxes and look after our old people.

    But this comes at a price. And the price is the fall of our entire civilisation. The end of our culture our language and our very identity.

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  • 134. At 7:57pm on 19 Feb 2011, Hundred House wrote:

    //49. At 1:35pm on 04 Feb 2011, Carl Showalter wrote:
    42. At 11:58am on 04 Feb 2011, Masons Arms wrote:

    I love the snobbish 'untruth', clearly evident in your posting, and reflecting Easton's blog, that anti-immigrant feeling is based on lack of education, implying that 'educated' people are above such things.

    it was more a dig at the tabloids, which should have been very evident. not quite sure why you took such offence, when what I was saying is that the increased tabloid coverage in the UK invariably leads to increased influence.

    Well, I spend a lot of time in Germany, Benelux etc. From what I see, anti-immigrant feeling is pretty strong there, too. There are tensions - look at the frequent French riots, the killings of Fortuyn and van Gogh, the Danish cartoon riots, the apparent rise of the Swedish far right, the burqa bans....

    Well, I live in Europe, spend a lot of time travelling round a number of countries and return to the UK on a regular basis. From what I see, the UK is far more anti-immigrant simply by not being a member of the Schengen Treaty. Switzerland and Norway aren't even in the EU, yet both are signatories to Schengen, which if you didn't already know allows the free movement of people between member countries. currently the UK isn't even designated as a future member.

    Nowhere did I mention that the UK was alone in resenting immigration, it's just the UK resents it more than others.//

    And you're wrong.

    You were trying to imply that UK attitudes to immigration are shaped by tabloids, rather than people's experience. That's untrue.

    You are also wrong in backing up Easton's views. Easton clearly either doesn't know, or chooses to ignore, the growing anti-immigrant feeling in Europe, and you are backing him up.

    Easton doesn't mention the fact that other European countries have significant anti-immigrant parties, and we don't. Likewise, Easton doesn't examine issues like burqa bans elswhere in Europe, or the tensions over immigration evident in events such as the frequent French race riots, the Danish cartoon ban, the killings of Fortuyn and van Gogh.

    Neither do you.

    I'd suggest Easton is either remarkably ill-informed, a genuine Little Englander, or just choosing to ignore Inconvenient Truths.

    As for you - you make statements about British attitudes, but you don't back them up, or refer to the tensions I mention in mainland Europe. That's why you are making the same mistakes as Easton.

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  • 135. At 08:18am on 20 Feb 2011, sjov wrote:

    I feel the main reason for the anti immigration mood, is probably the fact that the voter is never asked IF he/she wishes immigrants to be allowed in the UK. Successive governments of all political persuasion simply ignore those who put them in power as soon as they are elected. Blair’s unbelievable assumption that only a few thousand East European’s would migrate to the UK after their joining the EU is testament to the ignorance or stupidity or both of the political elite in the UK.

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  • 136. At 11:36pm on 20 Feb 2011, Sunpro wrote:

    To be frank, the British are generally disliked ouside the UK because of their obnoxious behaviour and attitudes against foreigners in their own backyard, and even outside the UK. Costa del Sol did someone shout? Those who do not agree need to pull their heads out of the sand. No surprises that the general British public with their little englander mindset are egged on by the gutter press with some exceptions. The political right, including many in the tory ranks, demonstrate an utter contempt and breathtaking paranoid arrogance for foreigners. The majority of moderate EU citizens be warned. The little englanders are planning to curb your hard fought human rights. The tory LIB-DEM coalition are planning a watered down HRA into a so called bill of rights. But thankfully not for the majority of EU citizens, unless Clarke gets his way. Perhaps there might even be a campaign to throw the British out of the EU. Force them to have visas when they holiday in the costas or France while they have their fish-n-chips with tomato sauce by the beach. You can't join a club and refuse to comply with the rules just because the majority comprises of 'foreigners'. Either your in or your not.


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  • 137. At 1:27pm on 21 Feb 2011, Diana_France wrote:

    Matt_Hertfordshire1 and other posters sound as ignorant about Brits abroad as they are about immigrants in the UK. I am a UK Citizen living in France. I am not entitled to use the French Health system for free, or the benefits system despite paying French taxes and contributing to the French Social Security shortfall through tax on investment income during those years when I receive any such income. I am an early retiree since my job and that of my spouse was outsourced to India where salaries are dramatically lower. My company pension was earned. I do not need to work here in France, and when I eventually reach UK state retirement age (which is being advanced faster than I can catch up with it) my pension will be paid by the UK - to which nation I paid contributions all my working life, however my company pension will be reduced when the state one starts.

    Unlike many immigrants, I speak, read and write French, I respect French customs and courtesy, I participate in local events and activities.

    I fail to see what my life in France has to do with either the French or British Empires and mistakes made by previous generations. I don't believe a single one of the current wave of immigrants to the UK is arriving in order to get their own back on former colonial powers. They are here because the UK system is a soft touch.

    The survey is not too helpful without sight of the questions or a full understanding of the circumstances in each country. For example, the term "Health System" means one thing to a Briton and another to a Frenchman: in the UK the health service is overworked and inefficient and patients wait too long for everything. We therefore fear pressure from immigrants. In France the system is private and the patient pays for every part of their care, being reimbursed for much of it by the state and buying insurance to cover the shortfalls. Everything is available swiftly so the French generally don't fear that immigrants will slow things down or milk the system. I am welcome to pay for treatment in France - the French state does not reimburse me and in fact, neither does the UK as I have been out of the country for more than 13 weeks.

    Now, if the small parts of your postings about which I know a reasonable amount are total rubbish, what value can be placed on the rest?

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  • 138. At 8:26pm on 21 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    136. At 11:36pm on 20 Feb 2011, Sunpro wrote:

    To be frank, the British are generally disliked ouside the UK because of their obnoxious behaviour and attitudes against foreigners in their own backyard, and even outside the UK.

    ..............

    Yet another ignorant anti-British stereotype posting ... no wonder the British are waking up to the challenge ... if you can tell us which country you're from /were born in ... we might be able to have a right good British laugh here!

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  • 139. At 9:53pm on 21 Feb 2011, Poppymug wrote:

    Why am I so concerned about immigration?
    Because too many lazy Brits have decided that they should sit on their backsides, watch daytime TV and claim benefits; while immigrants should go out to work. What I want is immigrants to come to this country to do jobs either once all able Brits are back earning their keep or when they have specialist skills that we as a country have been short sighted enough not to train enough of out own workforce in.
    Is that so difficult to accept?

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  • 140. At 12:12pm on 22 Feb 2011, nautonier wrote:

    139. At 9:53pm on 21 Feb 2011, Poppymug wrote:

    Because too many lazy Brits have decided that they should sit on their backsides, watch daytime TV and claim benefits; while immigrants should go out to work.
    ...............

    Another repeat anti-'British working class' sterotype.

    Where are you Trevor Phillips? ... Where are you hiding? ... This is discrimination! ... 'Equality audit' please!

    Impossible ... to 'accept' your poisonous nonsense directed at those who are 'benefit trapped' ...

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  • 141. At 3:31pm on 22 Feb 2011, joeinbeverley wrote:

    The general public is not ignorant or stupid as you infer. Many of us see the streets we were brought up in turned into a foreign land with a mosque rather than a church on the corner. This article is typical BBC newspeak.

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  • 142. At 10:04pm on 22 Feb 2011, jack sparrow wrote:

    Whistling Neil wrote:

    No, you need to read more carefully. The report is about the UK not just England (so it occurs to me it also may include responses from some Scots who regard English living there as immigrants), so Marks statement is correct as is your statement about England alone.

    If you were to argue that the UK figures probably reflect England primarily due to population disparity between nations in the UK and therefore it would have been better to consider the area and population density of England alone in considering population density as a factor , that could a valid point of view.

    The UK is not England and vice versa.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    As England is home to many millions of Scots, Welsh and Irish it could be considered as representative of the UK. Whereas none of the other home countries could make this claim. Also if we excluded the Scottish mountainous terrain from our calculation as being unfit for habitation, then we may also see Scotland as being more congested than we dare to think.

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  • 143. At 4:29pm on 23 Feb 2011, Hundred House wrote:

    //136. At 11:36pm on 20 Feb 2011, Sunpro wrote:
    To be frank, the British are generally disliked ouside the UK because of their obnoxious behaviour and attitudes against foreigners in their own backyard, and even outside the UK. Costa del Sol did someone shout? Those who do not agree need to pull their heads out of the sand. No surprises that the general British public with their little englander mindset are egged on by the gutter press with some exceptions. The political right, including many in the tory ranks, demonstrate an utter contempt and breathtaking paranoid arrogance for foreigners. The majority of moderate EU citizens be warned. The little englanders are planning to curb your hard fought human rights. The tory LIB-DEM coalition are planning a watered down HRA into a so called bill of rights. But thankfully not for the majority of EU citizens, unless Clarke gets his way. Perhaps there might even be a campaign to throw the British out of the EU. Force them to have visas when they holiday in the costas or France while they have their fish-n-chips with tomato sauce by the beach. You can't join a club and refuse to comply with the rules just because the majority comprises of 'foreigners'. Either your in or your not. //

    Like Easton, you are making unsubstantiated racist remarks about the Brits. If your posting, or Easton's blog, referred to asians in the same way, it would be pulled.

    As for the Brits being disliked - some no doubt are, and no doubt with good cause. But they don't tend to nick other people's jobs, or blow people up, so they're not as unpopular as some immigrants.


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  • 144. At 01:30am on 09 Jun 2011, royalcitizen wrote:

    I think british arrogance is the answer. But arrogance aways goes wrong. Immigrants are brave to come here!, they must learn a new language, they have to put up with rejection and cultural barriers!. Most of them escape from tough backgrounds! So why we should judge them?...Are we waiting for big thanks more than their NATURAL RESOURCES such as oil and gold that WE HAVE STOLEN AND THANKS TO THAT WE ARE WEALTHY NATION TOO??????

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  • 145. At 4:14pm on 12 Aug 2011, maganarice wrote:

    @nautonier not surprised once again to see immigrants blamed for all the ills in this country, like British people are perfect wherever they go and do not have any negative impact on the country's outside the UK that they live and work in. If all your proposals were taken on board and reciprocated everywhere, even you would not be able to travel outside the UK, but from your comments it is clear to see that you probably have never left this 'Island'. Immigrants have negative and positive impact on this country and every other country in the world, we live in a Global Village and this entails movement of people around the world, what this requires is balanced management. Human rights are here to stay including yours and just because you are British does not mean that every other persons right to live and work where they wish should be curtailed because you are not happy about it. Please get over yourself, open your eyes and see the world for what it is, sans bigotry.

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  • 146. At 7:29pm on 03 Jan 2012, jbionic wrote:

    The truth is that native English population is dying out without any wars being fought or starvation. If one checks the latest census figures, it clearly shows that white british now represent only 82% of total population! Among those there are also many of non-english origin. This clearly demonstrates that Govt immigration policy has failed.

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