This Financial Times blog outlies the reasons why Gordon Brown’s British Jobs for British Workers probably qualifies as the most stupid thing one could promise, especially when there was a financial downturn on the cards.Â To whit:
In the UK, prime minister Gordon Brown is reaping the protectionist storm he sowed with his infamous protectionist and xenophobic call for â€œBritish jobs for British workersâ€.Â What was he thinking?Â Follow the logic: â€˜British jobs for British workersâ€™,’Scottish jobs for Scottish workersâ€™ (along with â€˜Itâ€™s Scotlandâ€™s oilâ€™), â€˜Welsh jobs for Welsh workersâ€™ and â€˜English jobs for English workersâ€™.Â Why not London jobs for London Workers, or London jobs for native-born London workers, or even London jobs for white Christian native-born London workers?
How divisive can you get?Â British workers are demonstrating against workers from elsewhere in the EU – Italian and Portuguese workers are currently at the centre of a rather disgusting series of altercations at UK oil refineries, gas terminals and power stations, following a dispute at Totalâ€™s oil refinery at Killinghome in Lincolnshire, where an Italian engineering company was bringing its own staff from Portugal and Italy for a egnineering construction project.
This is already being exploited by fascist organizations such as the BNP, notably through their front organization British Wildcats – if you doubt this is the case then the Ministry of Truth details the evidence.
In addition to providing propaganda to fascists, gratis no less, the other main beneficiary of protectionism will be those operating in the black market.Â John Robb outlines the details, basically stating that it just increases the range of goods such groups can provide and thus improving their economic standing.Â Or, if you like, the Law of Eristic Calculation.Â Not to mention that stoking such nationalism, at the expense of foreign countries, will only hamper efforts to cut down on such markets.
So yeah, nice going Gordo.Â I’ve always wanted to live in a third world country, complete with pointless ethnic strife, a booming illegal industry, corruption, a lowered standard of living and de facto IMF control via “economic structural adjustments”.Â No, really.