Big Business, the Driving Force behind Immigration


In Britain, the House of Lords has reported that the economic impact of immigration is minimal and has concluded that it ought to be capped. The report is seen as a decisive defeat for the government’s long-held view that immigration boosts the economy by increasing production.

The Lords have found that, while the total size of the economy does rise when there is high net immigration, this does not mean that prosperity as such rises. Per capita GDP remains the same. In other words, the size of the economy rises only to the extent that there are more people in the country than before. The economic benefit of mass immigration is zero.

The social costs, of course, are very considerable. The most significant of these is the impact on the cost of housing. The report finds, among other things, that if the present rate of immigration continues, then the average property will cost 10.5 times the average income in 2031. Eight years ago, the ratio was 4 and now it is 6.5.

The inflation of property prices causes immense social and economic damage, although Britain’s numerous property owners have for years deluded themselves that they are getting richer because their houses go up in price so spectacularly. When property rises in cost, the whole economy suffers since all businesses need premises from which to operate. Families suffer, too, because people have fewer children if they cannot afford enough bedrooms to put them in.

The Lords’ report is a huge vindication for the brave campaigning of Sir Andrew Green, Chairman of Migration Watch, and someone whom I have the honour to know personally. Since immigration exploded when New Labour came to power, this former Ambassador to Saudi Arabia has managed brilliantly to put immigration on the agenda without ever giving off so much as the slightest hint of racism. On the contrary, his measured tones and careful statistics have ensured that he is listened to with great respect. The report is nothing less than a total vindication of everything he has been saying for years.

Why, then, has there been such a firm lobby in favour of immigration for so long? The answer lies in one of the most arresting facts about modern politics – a fact which, in my view, even the most redoubtable experts like Andrew Green have perhaps not quite taken on board. I refer to the unlikely alliance between big business and the New Left.

This alliance reached its apogee under Tony Blair, who was known for his slavish admiration for rich people whose hospitality he so often enjoyed for free. But it extended throughout New Labour. Peter Hain, the onetime anti-apartheid campaigner, a man whose progressive credentials could hardly be more immaculate, had to resign in February because he had accepted £100,000 from a pharmaceutical magnate, one of whose companies is facing prosecution for the biggest fraud ever alleged in the United Kingdom.

The alliance between big business and the New Left is not, however, based merely on the greed, opportunism and venality of politicians, or on the desire of big companies to buy political influence. Instead, it is based on ideology. Specifically, big business is in favour of immigration not only because it drives down wages – allowing profits to remain high without companies actually having to sell more products – but also because it is culturally in favour of multiculturalism.

The entire ethic of post Cold War globalisation, indeed, is profoundly anti-national. The multinational corporation, like Marx’s worker, “has no country”: the modern international corporate executive is more at home in an airport departure lounge or a Hilton hotel than in a village pub. He scorns any notion that the legislative framework of a state should give preference to the fixed inhabitants of that state, and instead tells the government that he will simply re-locate, like some disembodied spirit, to another part of the world if the tax regime is not favourable to him. To put it bluntly, multinational companies are vehicles of cosmopolitanism, every bit as powerful and influential as the more intellectual proponents of multiculturalism and the end of the nation-state.

The big corporation likes immigration because immigrants drive down wages and are typically not unionised. Big companies do not care if immigrants do not pay taxes, or if they make extra demands on schools and hospitals, because the state picks up the bill for that. They do not care if there is general inflation, or sector-specific inflation such as in property, because they have their eye on next year’s bottom line, and on their Christmas bonus, not on what will happen a generation hence. Big companies operate on the principle “privatise the profits, socialise the losses”, demanding that policies be pursued which increase their income because the costs are passed onto the taxpayer and society at large.

As Pat Buchanan argued brilliantly in The Death of the West, economic history shows that periods of high immigration do not coincide with periods of high economic growth. Japan grew spectacularly in the period 1955 – 1993 but immigration over that time was zero. The periods when America’s prosperity has risen are those when immigration has been low; the economy stalls, by contrast, when it is high.

Ever since Mrs Thatcher, the predominant ethic in British politics has been pro-business. The slogan is “free trade”, but that is not the same thing. Of course it was necessary in the early 1980s to free Britain from the excessive shackles which the trades unions represented; but, in domestic politics as in diplomacy, there are no permanent victories, especially not if political parties stop thinking, as the Tory part did long ago. So deeply entrenched has “free trade” now become that it is a taboo which unites the whole political class. Any suggestion that the activities of business should be limited or directed by the state is dismissed as Luddite economics, reactionary thinking worthy of a flat-earther.

In fact, Britain and many other European states are themselves just as much in hock to the demands of big business now as they were to the labour movement a generation ago. The pendulum has now swung too far in the opposite direction. Let us hope that the breaking of the taboo of immigration will mark the moment at which it starts to swing slowly back.

That confirms once again

That confirms once again that healthy business should stay at the bottom of a healthy economy. The house of Lords should have known that before encouraging immigration. Now it will be a lot harder to bring things back to normal, if we still remember what normal is...
Alaman, Trianz

Confusion and ignorance

The author is confused. 

He is right that "big businesses" are vehicles of cosmopolitinanism and will try to privatise profits but socialise losses.  But, big businesses do not determine a country's culture nor politics.  Political institutions and voters do that in democracies, and they reflect largely the educational system and media.

The author is very wrong to think that "free trade" has become a "taboo".  On the contrary, there are few things that are so politically UNpopular as "free trade" in Western countries, both on the left and the right of the political spectrum.  Particularly trade unions and the political left have replaced the slogan of "free trade" by its OPPOSITE, i.e. "fair trade" which is a contradiction-in-terms.  Fair trade is a misnomer, for it would 'harmonise' away the very conditions which enable comparative advantages and disadvantages to emerge on different product markets , which is the foundation for 'trade' to be economically beneficial.

Early great economists like Adam Smith, David Ricardo, and John Stuart Mill, understood the economic benefits of trade much better than our contemporary media pundits, most of which are wallowing in ideologically-induced ignorance.    Smith and Mill understood that trade is a SUBSTITUTE for mass migrations of people, not a cause.   When people (i.e. companies) can trade, and that way benefit from different talents and from specialisation, then there is no need - or at least a lesser need - for people to move in order to improve their economic conditions.

If Mr Laughland would slow down and think for a moment, he would realise that "big business" and "multinational corporations" are no friends of "free trade".  Corporations are interested in private profits, i.e. they are always interested in suppressing competition (or market entry of competitors). 

"Free trade" is something that can only be ensured by a government that in principle wants to promote the general interest and not private interests.  The same thing applies to immigration policy, which is a political issue in the domain of government.  (A)Trade of goods and services and (B) migrations of people, are separate issues, and they should not be conflated and confused.      

No surprise

That's just the economic costs, how about the social costs - the rise in crime, strain on social services, healthcare and schools - and the dilution of one's cultural values and identity, no small loss.


The left games multi-culturalism to keep fresh needy voters in supply. They have no problem with trashing a country via mass immigration to stay in power.

Cost of Immigrant Crime

Ovalteen: "No, it's strongly negative."

I agree entirely. But as I understand it, Coleman didn't say that the report published by the House of Lords has excluded costs from crime, security, the race relations process, health "tourism" and imported ailments such as TB. (Although maybe it has —I haven't read the report yet). I think what he said is that the UK government usually does not take those elements into account when it claims that immigration is good for the economy.

Anyway, immigration from most countries of the third world is very detrimental to European economies, even if we do not take those elements into account.

Ugly: "Incomplete account, at best"

Of course. The title of the report is: The Economic Impact of Immigration.
It deals with the economic aspect.

Not only Big Business

Unfettered and indiscriminate immigration also creates a voter base for those in power.  In the US, the Republicans favor immigration because of big business, yes, but the Democrats favor it because they want their votes.

So, the former wants it because of greed.  The latter wants it because of power.

"He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.” – Thomas Paine

Not just big business

Let's not forget the role of neocons in promoting open borders - especially in the United States. Immigration restrictionist parties like Vlaams Belang are anathema to neocons as well as the Left.

Incomplete account, at best

You ignore the conditioning that has been taking place for over a generation now in colleges and universities in the West by leftist professors, the constant drumbeat that values are relative, that all cultures are equal (except the West, which is mostly evil), and that diversity is the highest good.

I can tell you from personal experience as someone not that far removed from four years of college at two universities, one public, one private, and three years of law school in the US, that at each and every one the first thing new students are greeted with is a weeked of orientation in diversity training. We are taught that there is no higher good than diversity (racial, not ideological, of course). Doing good deeds, serving your fellow man, leading an ethical life, these are all secondary to the highest good: ethnic diversity. A generation has been conditioned to believe this.

If only it were as good as zero

The economic benefit of mass immigration is zero.

No, it's strongly negative.

David Coleman, a professor of demography at Oxford University, said in his evidence to the committee that the Government had excluded costs from crime, security, the race relations process, health "tourism" and imported ailments such as TB.

Increased crime alone would wipe out any economic benefit. There are hundreds of white Britons lying in graves who would be alive today if it were not for mass immigration. There are many thousands of living ones who have suffered vicious immigration crime. Millions more are going to suffer in future, because this disaster will not be reversed overnight. There should be a Nuremberg trial one day for those politicians, journalists and academics who are responsible for it.