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http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2009/jan/30/brown-british-jobs-wor… - Ed's journal
sobrique
sobrique
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2009/jan/30/brown-british-jobs-workers
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7859968.stm

OK, so "British jobs for British workers".

I think the worlds of the great philosopher 'Jean Luc Picard' best expresses my reaction to this:



I mean, seriously. When did racism sneak in the door and become 'ok' again? It looks like someone's parroting the BNP manifesto or something.

I mean, that's even before you get to the inherent stupidity of assuming that jobs are a finite quantity, and that 'johhny foreigner' is stealing _yours_. More jobs means more cash circulating, which means yet more jobs.

But here's where the problem kicks in - it's far easier to blame 'someone
else' for stealing a job, than it is to face up to the reality - companies aren't stupid, they'll employ based on what does them most good as a company. The guys who've been motivated enough to travel overseas to work for a living, are generally also the ones who are more motivated than the average dole dodger. They're probably also working harder for less pay than the average "British worker".

Cultural diversity is a good thing. We don't _want_ to be a minimum wage, manual labour economy. It's the influx of new ideas, cultures and the attracting of motivated people, that stimulate the kind of economy and society that we.... well I want to live in. I accept there's people out there who'd much rather hate on people for having oddly coloured skin, and abuse the staff of the restaurant they're in, because they don't do chips to go with their curry.
But frankly, that's the kind of person that we _are_ better off without.

If 'foreigners' are stealing your jobs, then stop for a moment and ask why? Why is a company going to the effort of recruiting in another part of the world to do the same job you could. Maybe, just maybe, it's because of _your_ failings.
I have seen it in action, and can very definitely tell you that it's very
rarely the polish people at work that are the ones that will be slacking off,
being sloppy on timekeeping, and generally being slapdash about the job they do.

So seriously. Let's lose this nonsense, and actually go on with doing
something more constructive about whining about the unfairness of the world.
Yes, it's unfair, now what are you going to do about it?
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Comments
(Deleted comment)
serpentstar From: serpentstar Date: January 30th, 2009 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
*polite applause*
jorune From: jorune Date: January 30th, 2009 06:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
What we need right now is cultural diversity not isolationism.
What we need is collective and co-ordinated action by all nations so that the strength of many can shore up the problems of the few or the one.
What we need right now is free trade not protectionism.


America tried this with the Smoot Hawley Act in 1930 and suffered greatly for it. Now it rears its ugly head again causing concern across Europe and Canada.


sobrique From: sobrique Date: January 30th, 2009 06:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Indeed. I'm of the opinion that any industry that can't compete, even given their competition is shipping internationally really needs to be looking at putting their house in order.
mister_jack From: mister_jack Date: January 30th, 2009 07:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
The only dumber thing I've seen lately is France's "Let's strike because there's a recession on!".

Seriously: What the Fuck is this shit?
jorune From: jorune Date: January 30th, 2009 11:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
Photobucket
draxar From: draxar Date: January 30th, 2009 11:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
I agree.

However, I can see some of the reasons for the reactions that they are. They're not good reactions, but they are understandable, sometimes.

Take my old home town, Hereford. Small city that's really a large town, in the Midlands. For as long as I remember, there's never been any racisim there, but one of the reasons for that is that there were very few immigrants, and relatively few non-caucasians – there's little to draw people to Hereford rather than anywhere else.

But from what I've seen on the few visits back I've made is that there's now the beginnings of resentment, as there's now a fair number of Polish people who've recently moved to there.

And yes, there are plenty of sensible reasons why the Eastern Europeans are good at getting jobs. But those reasons won't easily convince someone who has seen the last four jobs he applied to go to someone who's recently moved to the country.

Yes, that person needs to be educated as to why it's happening, and to keep on trying for the job. But you'll have more success at doing so if you take the time to look at it from these peoples' point of view, understand their concerns, and then try to guide them away from racisim.
mcnazgul From: mcnazgul Date: January 31st, 2009 09:41 am (UTC) (Link)

and another thing (long, may contain nuts)

Your last two points speaks volumes about the attitude of how UK business runs. Asking the UK workforce to do something about it is like asking a soldier to barge into the general's office and say "General, your plan to charge the other side under artillery fire won't work." There will be laughter and possibly a gunshot.

It is simply about tenders from European firms being cheaper and our migrant friends being willing to be paid less for the same work. All the angst about Primark and when business does it, it's the workers who are somehow at fault. Hypocrisy!!

To take a local example, work at Staythorpe power station was awarded to a Spanish firm who specified a Spanish workforce as part of that contract - protectionism or the fact that they'd be paid less? The company accepted it when they read the contract. Did they really expect their UK employees to sit quietly by and go "Oh, that's all right then?" What price industrial relations?

And is it me, or could the economic summit have taken place somewhere else than Davos, a Swiss ski-ing resort unaffected by the issues? I had to laugh at David Cameron though, arguing for moral capitalism is like asking for compassionate terrorism.

Ironically, we will never be rid of our racists. They have their own infrastructure in place and will claim a moral high ground as the recession hits them. They are not isolated in the market and you have to blame those migrant workers for being so damned cheap - yeah, the barstewards...

We are currently experiencing a shakedown. Banks and financiers got greedy and got burned (sub-prime, short sale). Now they're not lending and businesses are undercutting the public who have to subsidise their incompetence. Are we having fun yet?

This is about responsibility. It's also about cause and effect.
kalkyrie From: kalkyrie Date: February 1st, 2009 12:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
From what I can tell the situation that started this all off (A foriegn firm *only* employing Italian workers when contracted to do work in Grimsby... my home town is in the news \o/) isn't neccessarily right wing racism.

It seems the company isn't paying the Italians less than the average in the industry, it's just that they've worked with them in the past and hence would rather ship them over to Grimsby than hire local workers. The locals aren't even getting a chance to try out for the jobs, at any wage. The company involved is saying when people interview it that the company is 'not racist'. Anyone else hear an unspoken 'but...' at the end of that?
(Deleted comment)
kalkyrie From: kalkyrie Date: February 1st, 2009 05:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
*shrug*
Bear in mind they are also bringing in floating hotels to house their workers, so the price to hire them is probably noticably larger.
The 'not racist, but...' comment is partially a gut reaction of mine, and an attempt to constrast the situation on the ground with some of the above posts which are implying that all of the people protesting are racist.
Whether it falls within racist or not, the fact that they are not even giving people a chance does seem a bit... close minded. The *point* of interviews is to tell if people are any good or not. Following the 'we only work with people we know' logic to it's conclusion would probably lead to cronyism and "Old Boys' Clubs".
sobrique From: sobrique Date: February 1st, 2009 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Not at all. I would expect any company to use/relocate it's own workforce/known contacts first, and then look to hire second.
Every time you hire someone there is always a delay of 'integrateion' time.
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kalkyrie From: kalkyrie Date: February 2nd, 2009 03:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
*nods*
It's probably best to try to strike a path between the two extreme camps. To be honest the last few posts of mine were probably me going off on one about the assumption that Grimsbians are racist. Not true, they hate everyone equally ^^. (Apart from travellers. *sigh at hometown* ).

The media seems to be centring around the 'British jobs for British workers' slogan for the protesters (with all the undercurrents that has), while at least for the original case, a more accurate slogan would probably be 'Give us a chance, we're not all muppets'.

[Note that I have no idea about the 'copycat' strikes what so ever. I'm also aware of the irony at jumping to the defense of people because they belong to the same town as you, compared to my 'don't care about where people come from' arguments].
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