The letter below was sent to The Scotsman on Wednesday in response to an article the previous day attacking Scottish Education Secretary Mike Russell for being 'revolted' by UK immigration policy.
I am bound to say I agree - on this occassion at least - with Education Secretary Mike Russell for being 'revolted by UK immigration policy.' [Scotsman 29/1/14] He s right to be disgusted.
When BBC reporters are sent to Bucharest bus station on New Years Day to cover a mythical story about thousands of Roumanians heading for London's Victoria coach station to take advantage of Britain's 'generous benefits system' the influence of UKIP is self-evident. The fact the story revealed no 'hordes of Roumanain immigrants' or 'generous benefits' ought not to obscure the gullibility of BBC news editors who fell for this UKIP myth.
Meanwhile the Tories try to cauterise support ebbing away to their right continue to blame immigrants for Britains economic problems. Their latest proposal is to deny immigrants access to the NHS for two years. Of course I appreciate the Tories would like to deny everyone access to the NHS in favour of private medicine but this idea is surely their worst yet. They shoud be constantly reminded that immigrants make this country richer in coming here. They pay far more into the UK Treasury in taxes than they take out in benefits and services.
There was a time when Labour would have fought such a dual attack on migrant workers and the NHS but those days are sadly long gone. Now they tail end the Tories on immigration policy just as they did on privatisation, on public spending cuts, on anti-union laws, on warmongering, on Trident and ultimately of course on the UK itself.
UKIP want to pin the blame for the 2008 financial collape and the subsequent recession on immigrants. I am confident the people of Scotland will continue to reject their xenophobia and remind them it wasn't the Roumanians who caused the recession, it wasn't the Bulgarians who bankrupted the country it was bankers like Nigel Farage.