Struck by Nigel Farage responding to questioning from Mishal Hussein on BBCR4Today on the principle of an immigration commission establishing and enforcing bases for entry (*1) being about “maintaining normality”.
Particularly impressed with his insistance that a quantifiable cap on immigrant numbers was a compete red herring, the point being “social quality”. If pushed, yes he could point at stats at what had been considered “normal”, but turning such numbers into targets and caps was to completely miss the point.
The wider meta-point, is the media generally. Even high-quality journalists are part of an establishment that values quantity above quality. The underlying point for governance is that not everything that counts can be counted. It’s a deeply pernicious (scientistic) kind of political correctness – a meme – underlying governance itself, as well as the media as part of our checks and balances monitoring that governance, to be seen to stick with “objective facts”. As if quality itself were some slippery slope to leading to the PC bogey-man of “moral relativism” (*2).
Numbers are a tool, they are never the point.
(*1) Typically the bases for entry adopt another meme – “the Australian points system” – but again the focus tends to be “economic value vs benefit cost” of the candidate. Of course here too, there must also be a more fundamental cultural normality aspect to the test beyond the numbers. Coincidentally a fit with cultural normality is the immigration focus of another UKIP supporter (Anne Marie Waters) here. A cultural melting pot is one thing, but we don’t want to import memes that positively deny values our culture holds as basic freedoms. (Though as one commenter pointed out, whilst this logic is fine, and there is an element of straw-man I acknowledged in the previous report, the scale of “a few bad apples” amongst immigrant numbers is likely to be very small compared to those home grown by degenerate radicalisation – radicalisation toward illiberal, cultural values that deny basic freedoms I’m talking here, not specifically violent muderous (eg Salafist-jihadi) extremism necessarily. But the principle is nevertheless important – the quality of values held individually is fundamentally more important than a count of total numbers, or less still economic value. Numbers must not rule.)
[(*2) Post Note on Moral Relativism.]
[Post Note : Interesting to note the similarities between Farage view and Milliband’s take. Need to read the latter more closely, is he really agreeing, are they agreeing on the qualitative point about fairness? Hat tip to Daniel Trilling @trillingual – though by exploiting their own refugee family status, they cloud immigration with refugees.]