The government has wasted no time in tightening up Britain’s immigration laws, which were already vice-like under New Labour.
But restrictions don’t apply to everyone. If you need join your partner but can’t afford English lessons to pass the pre-entry English test, tough. On the other hand, as Home Office lawyer Kamal Rahman has just announced, anyone planning to invest over £5 million in the UK will be eligible for citizenship within five years. No questions asked. No tests.
Rahman said, “This is a way to attract high net worth individuals in a time of austerity”, and said that people would be given preferential treatment depending on the area of the economy in which they planned to invest.
In other words, the Tories want you out if you’re a child (particularly an Afghani child) or poor; but you will be welcomed with open arms if you’re rich.
If the government wanted a quick and easy way of raising funds there are plenty of tax loopholes it could close and plenty of tax dodgers, like Vodafone and Philip Green, it could tax.
This policy, like Tory policies on housing and education, is about social engineering on a grand scale — setting restrictions and controls in place to remake Britain in their own image; the image of the super-rich. The poor within our own society are to be swept under the rug (shunted out of inner cities and excluded from higher education), and poor migrants and asylum seekers are to be thrown out or turned away in greater numbers than ever before.
As we fight for top-quality public services for all, not just the rich, we should also fight for free movement. The only requirement necessary to live in Britain should not be your age, your wealth or your language skills but simply whether you want to live here. Scrap immigration controls! For open borders! No-one is illegal!