phil_woolasI’ve been wanting to post about this all week: The British Immigration Minister Phil Woolas has made the inflammatory claim that NGO’s that help asylum seekers are subverting the law, and playing the system. What a total dickwad.

From the Guardian:

In an interview with the Guardian, Woolas described the legal professionals and NGO workers as “an industry”, and said most asylum seekers were not fleeing persecution but were economic migrants.

“The system is played by migration lawyers and NGOs to the nth degree,” Woolas said. “By giving false hope and by undermining the legal system, [they] actually cause more harm than they do good.”

An industry? Yeah, cuz those folks who work at NGOs are loaded man, totally profiting of the system. Everyone knows that’s the money profession. Who’s this guy kidding?

He goes on to criticise his comparison to Enoch Powell:

“Enoch Powell was trying to divide this country. I’m trying to heal this country by allowing us to have a mature debate on immigration,” he said.

Mature debate? Right. Painting an entire swath of society motivated by helping our fellow citizens of the earth regardless of their nationality as little better than criminals – that’s a mature, reasonable way to have a discussion – mature, levelheaded, not inflammatory at all.

But this is the one that kills me:

In one case, Woolas said, an asylum seeker had won the right to stay after going through six layers of appeal. “That person has no right to be in this country but I’m sure that there is an industry out there [with] a vested interest.”

WHAT?!?!? He was approved. That’s it. As if a denial stamp by some government bureaucrat was a direct revelation from God, informed by insight into the honesty of that person’s soul. There’s a million reasons someone could be denied in these kinds of processes which have nothing to do with them being legitimate. They could have been missing some stupid piece of paper, maybe a document’s validity expired, maybe they were missing a signature, who knows! But to say that a rejection by some bean counter in a government office means that definitively that person is a liar (and in this man’s mind, some sort of criminal) is absurd.

Who put this man in charge? It’s like putting vegetarians in charge of regulating the beef industry.