[Left: at least this Left Labour blogger, Carl Packman, doesn't call Cameron 'far right', 'racist', 'Islamophobic', 'fascist', etc. However, that doesn't stop him from spewing out all the other Leftist cliches against every single other alternative position on immigration.]
EDL Extra comments on the Though Cowards Flinch blog article, 'The meaning of Cameron’s speech on immigration', by Carl Packman, April 14th, 2011. (Comments are in red.)
As I said in February, I don’t think it’s correct for a person to be judged alone on the kind of support he receives – particularly if that support comes from opportunists trying to score column inches. [Trying ‘to score column inches’ is not something this journalist/blogger, or any Leftist, would do, of course.
The funny thing is that almost every Leftist/socialist I’ve read and heard did try to dismiss both this speech by Cameron, and his last one about ‘muscular liberalism’, simply because of the fact that ‘right wingers’, or the BNP, etc. endorsed it. This is what this blogger appears to be criticising... at first! Yet this is precisely what he ends up doing himself!
Apart from that. There was little or no extra argument against what Cameron actually said. In fact, you’ll find that despite their belief in their own political sophistication, or political ‘analysis’, the majority of Leftists hardly ever genuinely debate with anyone outside the Left - and sometimes not even with fellow Leftists.
The further Left you go, of course, the worse it becomes. (It starts to resemble belonging to a religious sect in which there is no argument or contradiction allowed, as in the SWP. Actually, the SWP is not like a religious sect. It is a religious sect.)
Thus much Leftism is really just Contrarianism. That is, Leftists believe that their political sophistication, or their supposed penchant for deep political analysis, simply arises from the basic fact that they believe that ‘the man on the bus’, the ‘lads in the pub’, ‘the people on the council estates’, etc. think directly at odds with what they think. Thus their sophistication is simply a factor of their political divergence from the 'common man and woman’ and the fact that they are often at odds, politically and happily so, with what they think. This is especially true of Leftist students. And, again, the further you travel Leftwards, the more extreme that basic political Contrarianism becomes.]
The same, I feel, goes for David Cameron. When he gave his speech on multiculturalism earlier in the year, the BNP called it “the Griffinisation of British Politics”, while the equally unpalatable English Defence League used the speech as fuel for their fire in Luton. [The ‘unpalatable’ EDL? Is that like: the unpalatable white working class generally - especially ‘those on the estates’? We know how snobby the Left is, especially the far left/Trots and the Fabians. And that word, ‘unpalatable’, is resonant of middle-class snobbery. It’s as if this writer is a 19th colonialist talking about African tribesmen in the 19th century. (Now none of what I've just said is contradicted by the fact that, according to some images I’ve seen, Carl Packman may well be black himself. To think that a black man couldn’t be socialist, racist snob against the white working class would be, well, racist.)]
Pointing out these embarrassments should not be the crux of our criticism – since politics is not merely about doing the opposite of your counterparts. [As I’ve said. It is for the SWP and much of the Left.] Ones political judgement should stand up by itself.
The problem with Cameron’s speech on immigration is that it reduces migrants themselves to stereotypes – namely that they pursue sham marriages, fail to assimilate and put pressure on the welfare state – while also reinforcing good immigration as the cheap commodification of labour. [This blogger of Left Labour used to be a member of the SWP! Hence the Marxist jargon
The problem with Carl Packman's ‘analysis’of Cameron’s speech is that it ‘reduces’ what Cameron actually said to a ‘stereotype’. Why would Cameron speak out against those aspects of immigration that he, and this blogger, are happy with? There would be no point. Thus he spoke out against those aspects of immigration that he thinks are bad: ‘sham marriages’, the ‘failure to assimilate’, etc. Glowing pictures of all aspects of immigration are painted every day by the Guardian, the Left generally, Labour MPs, leftist councillors, bloggers like this, etc. So what would have been the point of Cameron repeating such obsequies about immigration? The whole point was that a major politician spoke on these taboo subjects and was critical for once. Why does this blogger simply want more of the same? Why does he want yet more pro-immigration fantasises? None of which will make any of these problems disappear and neither do they contradict them.]
However the problem does not begin and end with Cameron. This kind of low politics, deprecating immigrants, is the order of the day for the European right wing. [So there isn’t a single problem with immigration? Not even a tiny one? Maybe not in the posh parts of Islington, or wherever the socialist and Fabian Great and Good live, but everywhere else there are huge problems.
Again this blogger's Leftist absolutism, which demands that no one, ever, says anything critical about immigration, is just as bad, if not worse, than Cameron’s ‘low politics’. This blogger is clearly and simply the flip side of ’the European right wing’ he so shallowly dismisses.]
I found Nick Clegg’s reaction the most telling: Cameron’s language isn’t what we would have used…but he’s a Conservative leader talking to Conservative voters in the run-up to an election. [In other words, ‘Conservative voters’ want some nasty anti-immigrant stuff. Nick Clegg, however, being such a nice chap (despite being allied to Cameron and even to Cameron's ‘voters’), wouldn’t say such things. Rather, he would ignore each and every problem of mass immigration, as this blogger does, but still milk the political power that this partnership with Cameron has given him.]
How right Clegg is! But these are not conservatives, rather, Conservative voters who are lapping up this kind of flabby rhetoric. The worry is that this politics could fill the gap of third way politics, now in its declining hour. [What can be better classed as ‘flabby rhetoric’ than a post on immigration that doesn’t even mention a single problem with mass immigration - or even a single legitimate concern (which millions of Brits have)? That is ‘flabby’. That isn’t political ‘analysis’. That isn’t a sophisticated political take on immigration by a socialist/Leftist.]
In France, for example, President Sarkozy has decided to whip up tensions concerning Muslim immigrants, their headwear and assimilation, in a bid to attract voters away from Marie Le Pen’s National Front (FN). [I don’t really know who this blogger is, but this stuff is pure SWP. (I do know he used to be a member of the SWP. He now belongs to Left Labour.) Then again, Trots, Commies, and even New Labourites, all belong to the same ‘broad church’, even if some of them are extreme, psychotic and want to basically destroy ‘capitalist’ parliamentary democracy. Still, ‘the hearts of these Trots and Commies are in the right place’, eh, Carl? ]
As for Germany, during an argument inside Merkel’s cabinet about labor shortages, the chancellor chose to frame the terms of debate on the “failed approach” of multiculturalism. [Again and again this terrible political writer/blogger is simply dismissing even the possibility that any of these ‘right-wing’ politicians, not forgetting the masses of ordinary working-class people badly affected by these issues (the ‘unpalatable’ ones - even if he's black!), have even a single legitimate concern about immigration or that anything they say about it may possibly be true.
Indeed how can any of it be true or legitimate to Packman? I mean; none of these people, whether ordinary people or politicians, are socialists. Thus this blogger, for one, can simply dismiss, absolutely, everything they say and treat it as ‘flabby rhetoric’, or ‘whipping up tensions’, or ‘low politics’ or any of the usual patronizing and snobby Leftist stuff you hear from all of them - whether from Trots, Fabians, New Labourites, etc. (What did Gordon Brown say about one of his constituents? Didn’t he call her ‘an ignorant bigot’ for daring to bring up a single problem with immigration?]
In the Netherlands, fear of the immigrant is not restricted to Geert Wilder and his clan of PR-savvy stunt fascists; Netherlands immigration law now requires citizens to pass difficult tests demonstrating Dutch language fluency and cultural knowledge. [‘Stunt fascists’? What the fuck does that mean?! I can’t even say I disagree with it because I’m pretty sure that it doesn’t mean anything. One thing I can definitely call it, whether I understand it or not, is ‘flabby rhetoric’; the words this blogger himself uses to describe everyone who disagrees with him on immigration (as well as on everything else, no doubt).]
Earlier in the month, on this site, Paul identified three types of actors around the core executive of the new Conservative regime. The first being the upper class elite comfortable with high politics, the second as neo-liberal pacemakers defining the shrinkage of the state, and the third being the apologists whose presence is simply CV development. Though I think this is helpful, in order to properly understand the root of Cameron’s immigration speech, and the Tory party on social issues in general, we cannot ignore the emerging new rightist politics in Europe - immoderate on presentation, and epistemically closed in substance. [Just like this blogger’s post - except for the ‘rightist politics’ bit!]