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Roger Warren Evans
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858 3 November 2003
Management v Personal Freedom
I am a hopeless mixture of libertarian and authoritarian. I confess to being, by intellectual orientation, an "organiser" or manager - and I consider the "good society" can be realised only by the deployment of organisational skills of a very high order. On the other hand, I have a keen sense of the limitations that are placed upon "the State" in the pursuit of managerial intervention.
- the Government is wrong to attack the provision of Legal Aid for
asylum-seekers challenging their expulsion - Blunkett is flailing around
in search of every little piece of nastiness that he can put on public
is coordinating a national campaign against this wrongful withdrawal of
support - contact them at Coalition Against Legal Aid Cuts.
The first case brings out the authoritarian in me. The second and
greater passion, brings out my outrage at the death of any liberal
sensibility - at Cabinet level - in "my" Labour Government.
Katharine simply pressed the "Drop me line" button, and
gave me her views.
The first case brings out the authoritarian in me. The second and third, with greater passion, brings out my outrage at the death of any liberal sensibility - at Cabinet level - in "my" Labour Government.
Katharine simply pressed the "Drop me line" button, and gave me her views.
A new voice penetrated the dark debate about asylum-seekers this week, It was from an anonymous GP, writing in The Times on 28 October. It was perceptive, sensitive. generous, imaginative - and liberal. Please read on...
"No doubt there will be general rejoicing at yesterday's tightening of the Asylum Regulations; and, if I had never met any asylum-seekers, I too would have rejoiced. Are they not making a monkey of the British state?
I have no way of knowing whether the asylum-seekers I
meet in medical
favourably impressed by their human qualities, which seem to me often
superior, sometimes by a long way, to those of much of the native
Even when they have not been persecuted in the strictly political sense,
they have usually had lives of considerable hardship, which has deepened
their character and polished their manners. Few of them appear to me to be
spoilt egotists. Contrary to much prejudice, they do not want to sponge off
the state: most asylum-seekers seem to me avid for work. I have met many desperate for a job, although forbidden one by the State, and none who, once working, wish to give up. Their aim in life is self-improvement, not
resignation to sloth in squalor. They want no part of Gordon Brown's vision
of a just society: namely, one in which everyone is at least partly
dependent upon a Treasury handout, overseen by you-know-who, for whom they will vote for all eternity.
The first is the disgustingly disdainful and
otherwise. One cannot help but remember Primo Levi's nightmare in Auschwitz: that when the war was over, no one would believe what he said about what he had seen.
The way in which young, clever and willing people are turned within a matter
of a few weeks into helpless, shuffling dependants, the inhabitants of a
kind of Purgatory, by being forced on to our system of welfare, has to be
seen to be believed. We give them somewhere to live and a tiny amount of
cash on condition that they do nothing to help themselves. Many have told me that they regard it as a form of torture, and I do not think this is an
exaggeration. They want nothing more than to earn a living or start a
business: instead, they are told that they must vegetate, if necessary for
years. Their role is to be parasites, for everyone else in society to hate.
Another refinement of cruelty is to withdraw this welfare once they have
been refused residence, as well as continuing to forbid them to work, in the
hope that a life of sleeping in parks and searching for sustenance in
wastepaper bins will soon drive them to ask for repatriation to the land
from which they have fled.
For any sensible policy to work, we would also have to jettison all the
multicultural claptrap that employs armies of administrators in town halls
and elsewhere, who want to Balkanise our society into "communities"
competing for public funds, in order to give them, the administrators,
something to do.
Once the asylum-seekers are granted leave to stay, they
The author is a Doctor