I felt so incensed by the latest flyer to come through my letterbox today from UKIP that I have been driven to blogging, after a long 4 months without publishing anything. The atrocity I am referring to is this A5 piece of paper below:
The front of the leaflet is most certainly eye catching. 29 MILLION Bulgarians and Romanians – god that seems like an awful lot doesn’t it?
Oh wait, the entire population of Bulgaria is 7.348 million, whilst Romania’s is 21.38 million. But hey, there’s nothing wrong with rounding up.
So how likely is that 29 million figure, really, UKIP?
Well 15% of Romania’s population is under 15 years old, whilst another 15% are aged over 65 so frankly, they aren’t likely to be going anywhere soon.
The misleading headline and imagery of a flooded UK Border Control give the impression that 29 million Bulgarians and Romanians are going to arrive on New Years Day. Unfortunately, if we use 15-64 year olds as our ‘profile’ of potential immigrants, then that big scary figure drops down by a roughly a third.
Can we assume that every 15-64 year old in Romania and Bulgaria will want to come to our wonderful country? Like in football, maybe it’s time to admit defeat to the Germans, and accept that they offer a much more attractive destination than the UK in terms of unemployment rates for such a massive economy.
Nevertheless, this laughable headline intrigued me and I wanted to read more about their arguments and evidence. Unfortunately, their star url ukip.org/2014 actually produced a 404 error (for my non-geek readers, this means the page doesn’t exist). Either UKIP’s digital marketer needs to be sacked for such a rooky mistake, or perhaps the page was taken down for inciting racism – whichever it is, it’s probably better innocent people don’t get their hand on the free booklet.
Think outside the box
Skipping over the bashing of political rivals, and the pitiful attempt to dissimulate racism (“Many of these people will be fine, hardworking people who just want to do the best for their families”), we get to the body of the leaflet on the back – the detail if you will. After all, I was genuinely interested to know how this Single Market rule would affect me.
The bullet list is covers a range of scenarios, evidently designed to engage a range of audiences receiving this leaflet through the post. And truth be told, they all seem plausible when argued through simple supply and demand economics. So what I now want to talk about is one of the prominent Call to Actions “What can you do? Join UKIP.”
I’m going to tell you some things you could do to mitigate these supposed risks us Britons face when Romanians and Bulgarians are extended the right to live, work and receive benefits in the UK:
If there’s fewer jobs available, and wages are going down – Firstly stop whining about the increased competition from immigrants. Take it as an impetus to differentiate yourself, try harder in your exams, and prove to employers why you are the best person for the job or deserve a pay rise. Alternatively, as the saying goes, if you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen. As a Brit, you have a lot of mobility to move to another country to seek more suitable employment should you wish.
If there are longer queues for care and pressure on our hospitals and clinics – the most obvious action to take when stuck behind a queue of Bulgarians at the clinic would be to opt for private healthcare. Of course, not everybody can afford this and the NHS is what a lot of people think makes our country Great! So why not go to the root cause of the problem: the system cannot cope with increased demand. You could raise money for a charity that supports extra nurses, or campaign for change the running of your local Trust. Or maybe you could shape things from within: At GSK for example, pharmaceutical graduates are given the opportunity to do a secondment in the NHS as part of their training scheme, where they can apply their commercial skills in a real project.
 Romania population (2011) aged15–64 years: 69.7%. 70% of 21.38m = 14.966m
Bulgaria population (2011) aged 15-64 years: 68.3%. 68% of 7.384m = 5.021m.
14.966+5.021 = 19.987
These are just ideas I came up with ten minutes after reading the leaflet. I encourage you to leave your own rants, opinions and suggestions in the comments below:
How will the EU’s Single Market rules affect you?
- REVIEW: Predatory Thinking by Dave Trott