Category Archives: youth unemployment

Dalrymple: why I voted Leave

screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-14-10-23Dalrymple explains in an interview (from 1:02) that in England, as in many other countries, there is a sense that

the political and intellectual élite has formed itself into a caste that is completely separate from the rest of the population.

Dalrymple voted Leave in the 2016 UK European Union membership referendum

for political reasons. The EU is a political project which will reinforce this tendency to have a small caste that is separate. You only have to go to Brussels or Strasbourg to see people who haven’t paid for their own lunch for 40 years, who’ve never seen anything except from the back of an official car. There’s no possible way of the EU being even minimally democratic, of having checks and balances.

Dalrymple points out that the founders of the EU

intended this from the very first. They knew better; they did not think the population should have any say. We can see this when referenda are held: the result is always against what the political élite wants — and the political élite takes no notice.

On the subject of the young English people who voted Remain, Dalrymple says that these youths

were of the part of the population that expects to benefit from our highly corporatist State. They expect to be, or will be, in the élite, which is why they are in favour of schemes that are in the interests of the élite.

Young middle-class British Remainers claim to be concerned about ‘the future’, but, says Dalrymple,

if you look at Greece, what future do young Greeks have? 50% of the young in Greece are unemployed. In Spain it’s 45%, in Italy 25%.

This does not worry young middle-class Britons.

It doesn’t worry them because they are not going to be among the 45% who are unemployed.

It does not worry them because they are

not of the youth-unemployment class.

Why the West has to import labour

Despicable work, according to the UK newspaper the Guardian

Despicable work, according to the UK newspaper the Guardian

People, especially young people, in the better-off countries of Western Europe very often have completely the wrong attitude to work, if they work. The result, writes Dalrymple, is that,

despite mass unemployment, we have to import labour

in order that certain kinds of work be done. In Ireland, for example, Dalrymple says that

an old lady of my acquaintance needed 24-hour attendance, and this was provided by a Filipina, even at a time when there was 15% unemployment in Ireland.

An important factor is the

system of social security and unemployment benefits. The economic difference between doing this type of work and not working is not great enough to entice any native to do it.

There is also a

psychological, cultural or even religious difference. The change in the title of the senior nurse in a hospital ward from sister to ward manager is indicative of a change in sensibility, from a residually religious notion of serving others to a technocratic one. In the popular imagination, the distinction between service and servitude has been more or less eliminated.

Dalrymple cites a sentence written by a columnist in the London newspaper the Guardian:

So when a girl at 17 decides to go ahead and have a baby, there is no tragedy of lost opportunity other than the local checkout till waiting for her low-paid labour.

Such a sentence, Dalrymple notes,

breathes snobbery and disdain for those who do such work; it assumes that once a checkout cashier, always a checkout cashier, a fate worse than death. That there might be people for whom such work is suitable and potentially not odious does not occur to the writer. What makes the work odious is not the work but those who communicate their disdain of it. Snobbery thus makes the import of labour necessary.

Take hotels. In Britain, Dalrymple points out,

all good hotels employ exclusively foreign labour. If you want to go to a really bad large hotel in Britain, find one in which the staff are British. It is guaranteed to be ill-kept, with slovenly service, not very clean, with atrocious food, grubby staff, inattention to detail. Even a foreign telephonist is likely to be better, and to speak better English, than an English telephonist. If you want a good or even only a decent hotel, you must find one in which all the staff are foreign. This is so whatever the unemployment rate, high or low.

Dalrymple says he asks people to imagine that they are employers who seek an employee to perform work that is not skilled but requires such characteristics as punctuality, politeness, willingness to oblige.

The imagined employer has two applicants about whom he knows only two things: their age (shall we say 24) and their nationality. One is British and one is Polish. Which of the applicants does the imagined employer choose? Not a single person to whom I have put this question has hesitated for a moment: he chooses the Pole.

Our need for migrants

has a cultural, not an economic root.

But of course,

this does not mean that we need all the migrants we are likely to get from wherever we get them.

Radically unemployable British youth

Dalrymple writes that the British élite, characterised as it is by long-term intellectual torpor, moral cowardice, incompetence and careerist opportunism, somehow manages

not to notice what has long been apparent to anyone who has taken a short walk with his eyes open down any frequented British street: that a considerable proportion of the country’s young population is ugly, aggressive, vicious, badly educated, uncouth and criminally inclined.

British youth,

while it is lacking in self-respect, is full of self-esteem: it believes itself entitled to a high standard of living, and other things, without any effort on its part.

Dalrymple points out that although youth unemployment in Britain is very high, about 20 per cent of those aged under 25, the country has had to import young foreign labour for a long time, even for unskilled work in the service sector.

No sensible employer in a service industry would choose a young Briton if he could have a young Pole; the young Pole is not only likely to have a good work ethic and refined manners, he is likely to be able to add up and — most humiliating of all — to speak better English than the Briton.

After

compulsory education (or intermittent attendance at school) up to the age of 16 costing $80,000 a head, about one-quarter of British children cannot read with facility or do simple arithmetic. It makes you proud to be a British taxpayer.