Benefits of immigration

Immigration is always a benefit to the economy. There are more people, and the new people are more likely to be economically active. The economy grows, and they can be taxed for public benefit, all the things like health, education, natural monopoly utilities and transport which are better done by society, together. No way exists of using competition to make companies serve the public in these services. Public services get better because of immigration. They have got worse since 2010 because of deliberate cuts by the Tory government. The Nationalist lie that immigrants flood our country and damage our public services, used to get hard Right politicians elected who will cut those services further, is a great evil. Cuts inflame people’s fear and anger, and that anger makes people more authoritarian.

Dancers, flibbertigibbets and butterflies like me are in for a hard time.

My friend asked, but why is it always expressed as “good for the economy”? Is there nothing more important? Yes. Immigration is good for the culture, and for each person.

It is difficult. It causes tension. Migrating to a country can curtail horizons rather than expanding them. Polish or Bangladeshi communities exist where some people hardly go out of that small group, or learn any English. Well, people have to achieve the means of survival before they can self-actualise. Any organism explores its surroundings, looking for what will benefit it, avoiding harm, and once they get time to draw breath and really look about themselves loving, creative and adventurous souls will embrace the possibilities of different cultures. Not me, particularly, if I see a “Polski Sklep” I stay out of it, but I am not adventurous cooking even in English cuisine, and once something becomes mainstream, like Italian or Bangladeshi restaurants, I use it happily.

And I feel it is possible to be too assimilated. I was uncomfortable around an Indian Christian woman. I am not sure why, or what she had done I might object to, or what I would rather she had done, but there is something I can’t quite put my finger on. This is a blog, I would never throw out such an inchoate idea in writing published anywhere else.

And yet for adventurous leaders, whom the community will follow, our possibilities are expanded. Culture widens, we get new ways of understanding, expressing ourselves, and relating to others. We have more options, so we are more free.

We move from a homogenous society in which we can predict how people will be, to a diverse society where we accept difference, and that benefits flibbertigibbets and queers, who really have to curtail ourselves to fit a village homogeneity. But no-one fits that homogeneity, really, so everyone benefits.

Except the authoritarians, the grinches, the know-alls and control freaks who want everyone marching in step to the same martial music. Few people are like that naturally- even Mr Farage seeks his own freedom, as he seeks to deny it to everyone else- but people can be forced into that mould, by inflaming and misdirecting their anger and resentment. Diversity is our best defence against totalitarianism.

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4 thoughts on “Benefits of immigration

    • “Just” a question? What else could it be?

      In a large, developed economy, more workers mean more output. In a vast country with a great deal of subsistence agriculture, the growing economy- growing past Britain’s, recently, because of the Brexit vote- not all the local labour is used for industrial production.

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  1. This is so well-said. I could go on a long tangent here, but, I work directly with immigrants in my real life. I have never seen a bunch of folks so committed to bettering themselves and helping others – even when they have nothing. They are kind and really just want to do their part.
    That said, these policies and the idea of “regression” – ugh. There are 65 million of us in the US who believe that He Who Must Not Be Named is not normal and that – while scary and it’s going to be a bumpy ride – this too, shall pass. Because, honestly, only a tiny fraction of folks fit into the paradigm of “blue eyes, male, Protestant, white” category. The rest of us feel ostracized and well, we’re not going to take it, says the woman who is a mix of Latino, Cherokee, Navajo, and European ancestry who is blind in one eye and not a Christian…with no kids. So…we’ll be anomalies together along with a majority of people. We’ll band together and form the most welcoming community that also does not accept bigotry or hatred, but instead practices welcoming acceptance, by golly. 🙂

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