Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Compare And Contrast

The BBC's Mark Easton, treading warily round the subject of Muslim prisoners :

What the inspectorate also reminds us is that 11% of prisoners are Muslims - a very high proportion, since the religion represents only 3% of the population in England and Wales. Given that close to a third of those are converts and that the Muslim community has the youngest age profile of any religious group in Britain, the figure is not as surprising as first appears. Dr Basia Spalek, an academic at the University of Birmingham, has argued that the high levels of social and economic deprivation of the Muslim population is "linked to the kinds of offences that are processed by the criminal justice system". It is certainly true that Muslims are more likely to be unemployed or economically inactive than those in other religious groups. If the impression left by some coverage of today's report is that Muslim convicts have a "cushier time" in jail, the experience of the wider community is the opposite.

Dr Spalek sounds a bit of a card. "The kinds of offences that are processed by the criminal justice system" ? She means crimes.

No treading on eggshells for the Times of India :

UK prison inmates are increasingly embracing Islam to entitle themselves to the protection of the fearsome Muslim gangs, apart from availing other benefits available only to Muslim prisoners as per prison regulations.

The new breed of converts have been dubbed "convenience Muslims" since they enjoy exemption from work and education while attending "Friday prayers", and relish halal meat, which is provided only to Muslims.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

It's A Pity ...

That Mr Free Market has taken a vow of silence following what must be promotion to a flagship corporate role. Gone is the incendiary mix of guns and politics - only the military history remains.

I can't help thinking this would appeal (not for personal adornment, mind). The military-spec corset - with webbing and clips for all those little extras.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Globalisation In One Country

Jon Cruddas, 2005 :

“… immigration has been used as an informal reserve army of cheap labour. People see this at their workplace, feel it in their pocket and see it in their community – and therefore perceive it as a critical component of their own relative impoverishment. Objectively, the social wage of many of my constituents is in decline. House prices rise inexorably, and public service improvements fail to match local population expansion. At work, their conditions, in real terms, are in decline through the unregulated use of cheap migrant labour.”

Billy Bragg, 2010 :

“Everyone else in London benefits from multiculturalism and cheap labour…”

Karl Marx, 1847 :

“The main purpose of the bourgeois in relation to the worker is, of course, to have the commodity labour as cheaply as possible, which is only possible when the supply of this commodity is as large as possible in relation to the demand for it”

Commenter Jim on Liberal Conspiracy, 2010 :

“Where I live, there is a meat packing plant that has provided many with stable employment over the decades. Of course, with the large influx of Eastern Europeans they have steadily displaced the locals from this factory and there is a surplus of labour in the area. Employment agencies have descended on the area like vultures and almost completely ‘causalised’ the workforce around West Lothian to the extent that the job centres are littered with zero hour contract jobs.

A friend of mine who has worked in said plant for over thirty years sees young men coming in on the Monday work for three hours, then sent home to sit by the phone in case they are needed during the week.

This was exactly the type of thing the Labour Party was set up to tackle. These conditions, nauseatingly described as ‘modernisation’ show up the failings of the NL ‘project’. Whilst they were swanning about getting middle class men in public sector jobs paternity leave, ordinary working class people watched as their terms and conditions were slashed to Victorian levels. These people (rightly or wrongly) feel immigration undercuts their living standards. Is it right that in this Country that we have reduced people to the condition of day labourers?”

(see also this post)