The Rwanda Fiasco: When causing a pointless row is more important to the Conservatives than solving problems
When it comes to talking about ‘immigration’ as a broader subject in the UK, this page reflects on a speech given by Nigel Farage to a crowd of then-UKIP supporters in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris in 2015.
It was obviously cynical, opportunistic, and above all else clearly racist and disgusting.
But Farage said [among other things] in relation to immigration and the supposed failure of multiculturalism:
“We have to be honest and frank about this - and talk about these things without being fearful: there is a problem.”
There was an irony in Farage saying this - regarding this “honest and frank” discussion on refugees and asylum seekers [for sake of clarity, Farage was talking generally about “Muslims” at the time, too], and that people needn’t be fearful in having that discussion.
Those who wish to have it have said for years that the ‘liberal establishment’ was preventing them from having it, and yet irony exists because when it is thrust upon them and they have been given a platform to discuss the facts, the figures, the statistics, it is often these same people who will very seldom assess the counter-facts that challenge their cognitive bias because ‘those facts’ often prove their views on the matter to be so painfully misguided.
So as it turns out, they did not want to have that “honest and frank” discussion at all and on many occasions the only fear that appeared to exist was the probability that they could be wrong.
Seeing the ‘ghost flight to Rwanda’ being cancelled as a result of the European Court of Human Rights’ intervention was a temporary reprieve for those who campaigned so fervently against it.
Small victories for common sense like this are to be cherished in this day and age.
It wasn’t just a temporary reprieve for those who sought to come to the UK having fled persecution and seeking a better life, who should not be forgotten in this, but also for those who have become somewhat lost in the darkness over the last few years, too - since Brexit, since 2019 when this government was elected, since their disastrous handling of coronavirus, to today the “grave and imminent” cost-of-living crisis…
There could be a plethora of events that have left individuals believing that there is little in the way of light or hope.
In most cases, the hopelessness is perfectly justifiable and understandable - legislatively so in context of the various acts [Elections Bill, PCSC Bill, for example], amendments and bills this government has attempted [and thankfully in some cases, failed] to force through.
For each one, it is never a consideration on the part of the government that maybe they are the problem.
But then this is how narcissists operate. And narcissists are never wrong, are they? And if they are, or have done something wrong, it’s always another’s fault.
Like with the ‘ghost flight to Rwanda’ - it was never the fault of the government’s inhumane [and ultimately illegal] policy, was it?
It was the fault of the courts - in this case, the European Court of Human Rights.
At least that is what the government might have you believe.
As human rights barrister Adam Wagner writes:
This policy, however, is perfectly indicative of just how far this country has fallen in the last 12 years under the Conservatives.
I argue, in many cases, that it is performative and designed to outrage; an ‘algorithm government’ - like social media - that doesn’t ‘push’ you to ‘like’ [thumbs up!] or ‘dislike’ [sad face] it but rather either love it [heart emoji!] or especially hate it [Grrr angry red face!] and be outraged by it.
The latter will gather more ‘reacts’ - and this is most likely the point. Anger, that permanent state of anxiety, and fear, outrage, is where this government, it seems, would like people to be. It’s a strategy of sorts.
In years to come when this government is no longer here [and it will happen, eventually], people will lament on this particular madness.