Whilst it is pleasing to see an agreement is under way to settle the industrial dispute at Lindsey Oil refinery, there is nevertheless concern that this display of hate against “Johnny Foreigner” has been a despicable affair which has shamed the trade union and labour movement. 

I feel that Gordon Brown should have quickly made a public announcement accepting he was at fault in using such a slogan, he would have emerged from this crisis with dignity. If President Barak Obama can admit in public interviews he made a mistake in nominating Senator Tom Daschle for Health Secretary (Daschle has been challenged in regard to his tax status) so Gordon Brown should be man enough to accept he made a mistake and condemn those who have used it. Why on earth do British politicians find it difficult to admit errors or apologize is beyond belief.

Lord Mandelson on this occasion was the voice of common sense who made an effort to spell out the fact that the free movement of Labour is a condition of European Union membership, which is good for Britain, and thousands of British workers work in Europe.  Lord Mandelson is one of the few government ministers who this occasion has done his best to clarify what this crisis was about and challenge the racist slogan of “British jobs for British workers”.   Gordon Brown you have let us all down in your failure to respond quickly and admit you made an error.

No comments will be accepted from racists, fascists, nationalists see Comments Policy.

  1. February 5, 2009 at 09:14

    Brown made a dreadful mistake when he used that phrase.
    It gives people like those who support the BNP a reason to advance their cause.

  2. djcnor
    February 5, 2009 at 09:20

    Absolutely right! As a foreign worker, I’m not impartial. I hope they’ll think twice about the changes in the highly skilled migrant program, too, at least for those who are already here. My husband and I, for example, totally disassembled our US life for him to take up a social work position in the UK (I brought a Ph.D. in biochemistry and a design degree and much experience to the table). We were both in our early 50’s. Now, we haven’t a chance of meeting the requirements for extension. To get enough points, you pretty much have to be young (can’t fix that) or each have an income of over £40,000 (in social work?!!! not to mention that I have not been able to find a job anywhere near what my qualfications should justify. I can’t even teach high school without going back to school for a year.)

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