Thursday, November 17, 2011
Useless workshy British youth
The product of a generous welfare state and dumbed-down, value-free schools. No need to work so why should they? And the bosses don't want them anyway. Given their "attitude", I certainly would be unlikely to hire any of them
Around 500 foreigners landed a job in Britain every day over the past year while the number of UK-born workers plunged. Official figures yesterday painted a shockingly bleak picture of a jobs market in crisis as unemployment hit a 17-year high.
The Office for National Statistics said the number of British-born workers has crashed by 311,000 in a year, equal to more than 850 a day. But in the same period, the number of foreign-born employees jumped by 181,000 – or 495 a day.
Ministers admitted the situation was ‘unacceptable’, although bosses warned that many young British workers were too lazy and too bad at basics such as punctuality to be worth hiring. But experts said the latest figures highlight the urgency of tackling the immigration problem.
Yesterday Chris Grayling, the Employment Minister, was asked about why one branch of the sandwich chain Pret A Manger appeared to be staffed entirely by foreigners.
He told Sky News: ‘It is certainly a situation that I find unacceptable. Of course, this country has benefited from people coming in from other countries to work.
‘But I want to see more young people in positions in this country and I want … to see them getting jobs that become vacant, rather than people coming into the UK.’
It comes as unemployment among those aged 16 to 24 has ballooned to its highest level on record, topping one million for the first time.
Overall unemployment is currently 2.62million, its highest since 1994. The number of employees has dropped by 305,000 between July and September, the largest fall since 1992. Last month, however, the number of people claiming unemployment benefits rose by just 5,000, indicating, that many of those out of work refuse to claim because they expect to find a job again soon.
Dr John Philpott, chief economic adviser to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, said the general picture meant it already felt like a second downturn had begun for millions of workers. ‘This is a miserable time for UK workers as well as the jobless,’ he said ‘The anaemic “jobs-light/pay-tight” recovery itself feels just like a recession.’
Sir Andrew Green, of the Migrationwatch think-tank, described the figures as ‘stunning’. He said: ‘The immigration lobby can no longer pretend that these massive levels of immigration have no significant effect on the job prospects for British workers who are now unemployed.’
The crisis facing British-born workers comes after business leaders and lobby groups have warned they prefer foreign workers. The British Chambers of Commerce said many school leavers and graduates with ‘fairly useless’ degrees are unemployable because they lack basic skills.
Dr Adam Marshall, director of policy at the British Chambers of Commerce, said the fault does not lie with the young person, but their education. ‘There may be a course in underwater basket weaving, but that does not mean anybody will actually want to employ you at the end of it,’ he said.
A report from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, meanwhile, said bosses preferred foreign workers because they had a more ‘positive’ attitude.
Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, warned recently that Britain was in ‘the last chance saloon’ if it wants to get British people off benefits and into the workplace.
Ministers in his department are understood to be ‘concerned’ at the figures. ‘It’s not a pretty picture,’ said one source. ‘It makes it very difficult to do welfare reform when there are so many people coming in.’
A new Government scheme, announced yesterday, will offer a £1,500 cash incentive to small firms who hire an apprentice for the first time. Under the proposal, companies will be forced to educate the young person in English and maths to a level at which they would be able to pass a GCSE in both subjects.
Meet the British bosses who say: Give us foreign workers every time
CHARLIE MULLINS - PLUMBING BOSS
The number of foreign employees at a leading firm of plumbers has doubled over the past two years because British workers lack the right work ethic. Charlie Mullins, the 52-year-old founder of Pimlico Plumbers, said Britons would ‘rather be footballers than do an honest day’s work’.
Mr Mullins, whose firm has 200 staff, said he was forced to employ foreign-born people because they work harder than their British counterparts. ‘We’re increasingly employing foreign workers. They have the right attitude and are prepared to work harder,’ he said.
‘The younger British generation who come in for interviews are often sent by the benefit people and have no desire to work. ‘It’s a case of “won’t work”, not “can’t work”. They feel as if the country owes them a living.’
He said the number of foreign-born workers he employed at the company, London’s largest independent plumbers, had doubled in the past two years to 40, or 20 per cent of his staff.
They are mostly from South Africa and work as plumbers and tradesmen, roles which command annual salaries between £50,000 and £70,000.
But he also employs workers from Ireland, Italy, Australia and Spain in various roles in both the administrative side of the business and the trade side.
And he said his foreign-born employees tended to earn more than native workers because they were willing to put in overtime and keen to increase their workload.
Mr Mullins, from Kent, founded the firm in 1979. It now has a turnover of £17million. But he said that many of the British people he interviewed for jobs had the wrong attitude and demanded too much.
‘British workers are too picky and choosy and not prepared to work hard,’ he said. ‘They are demanding ridiculous money. ‘Many of the young people who come in for interviews have never even been in a workplace. Many of them have degrees: I don’t need people with degrees – I need people with the right attitude.’
KEITH ABEL - ORGANIC GREENGROCER
Keith Abel was forced to employ foreign-born workers because his popular firm, which delivers organic groceries, has struggled to find young British people to fill vacant positions. He said some young Britons were trapped in the benefits system and did not want to get up early to do a job for £7-an-hour when they could rely on Government handouts.
Mr Abel, who started Abel and Cole more than 20 years ago, said: ‘We’ve got a fantastic workforce, we’ve got extremely hard-working people. ‘It’s just a bit of a tragedy that a considerable and significant number of them are from Eastern Europe and not the local communities given the rates of unemployment in the local area.’
He said his company could not recruit young British people to work for £7.25-an-hour as delivery drivers and that some young British people on benefits would rather receive handouts than work.
'People are not prepared to start with what they deem to be menial jobs. Terry Leahy, the head of Tesco, famously started stacking shelves. Everyone starts at the bottom.' ‘People who are in the benefits system struggle with the concept of getting out of bed at 5.30 to do a six o’clock until three o’clock shift on £7 an hour when the actual additional income they’d be taking home is initially very small,’ he told BBC Radio 5 Live.
‘The point is, the better-paid work comes for the people who start on the lower-paid work. There must be a solution whereby the Government is able to wean people off benefits rather than shut them off completely when somebody goes into a job.’
He said he would happily find roles for young British people who were out of work. ‘If people who are on the unemployment register want to ask us for jobs, we’d interview them in exactly the same way we interview anyone else,’ he added.
‘Business people are in there to do business. Politicians are in there to solve problems like unemployment.’
TERRY ROGERS - HOTEL OWNER
While horrified that more than a million young people in Britain are unemployed, I’m afraid I’m not at all surprised. After working in the catering industry for 16 years – many of those as a manager seeking to employ staff – I have come to the sad conclusion that many young people simply do not want to work.
Of course they say they want a job. They send off job applications and turn up for interviews. But when it comes down to hard graft, they are simply not interested. The truth is that young people think the state owes them a living.
Underpinning everything is a welfare state which creates a culture where no one worries whether they have a job or not because there’s always free money from the Government to fall back on.
Also, brought up in school and home environments where criticism is practically non-existent, when they face the tough, challenging world of work, they are unable to cope.
To hear them complain about the shortage of jobs you would think they are desperate to work, willing to walk over hot coals to get a job. However, nothing could be further from the truth.
During my career, I have interviewed and employed many young people. And it shames me to say this but it was often easier to teach English to foreign applicants than it is to try to instill the right work ethic in our own English-speaking youth.
Time and again I see young people turn up for interviews wearing grubby jeans or tracksuits. They smoke and talk on the phone to their friends.
Many of them come with their partner or a parent (some even send their parents on ahead while they have a lie-in). What’s more, a lot don’t seem interested in the post at all – having turned up just so I can sign their Jobseekers’ Allowance form which means they can continue to receive welfare benefits.
Of those who do inquire seriously about the jobs, they often demand preposterous conditions. Many say they don’t want to work weekends or evenings because they want to go out with their friends. One applicant said the half-hour walk to work was too far.
One wretched soul told me he couldn’t work on Friday nights or Saturday mornings because he would be out with friends on Friday evenings and hung-over on Saturday morning! And they expect me to reward their commitment with a job?
Rather than interviewees doing their best to persuade me that I should employ them, the roles have become absurdly reversed with me having to persuade them to take the job.
Already I have had to let eight people go – and we have only been open since March – because they didn’t have the right attitude. One phoned in sick on his second day and never came back. Another lasted two weeks then she said the job was not for her because she missed Friday nights out with friends.
Another youngster was training for an NVQ qualification in our fine-dining team but lacked any ambition and decided life would be easier if she returned to her old job at a pub, where food was just heated in a microwave. And I sacked one employee for phoning in sick, then posting pictures of herself at a social event on the same day on Facebook.
Schools must take part of the blame. They teach subjects such as media studies, which give them false hopes about the type of jobs they can secure. There is a limit to the number of people who can work on The X Factor.
The tragedy is that so many youngsters seem devoid of real-life experience. This is where parents are at fault. From what I have seen, many parents have the same disengaged, uncommitted and welfare-sodden attitudes as their children.
Among many, there seems to be an utter absence of any sense of responsibility, work ethic or pride in contributing to society.
I recently gave a talk to a careers night at a local college. The youngsters stood slouched, hands in pockets staring up at the ceiling, some of them whistling under their breath. Not a single parent present chastised them for such unacceptable disrespect to an adult who had given up their time to address them.
There are those, however, who will do anything to secure a job. I once interviewed a young man in Staffordshire. He had taken a ferry, train and bus from the Isle of Man to make the appointment. He was wearing a suit and tie.
I gave him a job as a waiter and he’s now an events manager for a university. You’ve probably guessed – he is foreign (having been born in Indonesia). One of the best employees I ever had was a young Turk who barely spoke any English. He was so keen that I gave him a backroom job.
After infuriating weeks when other British employees had called in sick or turned up late, I put the Turk on the frontline. He was polite and friendly, happily juggling the job with two afternoons of English classes each week. He now manages one of the bars in Dublin Airport.
Job opportunities are certainly here and I want to give them to young people in my local area, but I’ve hit a wall. In desperation this week, I asked friends in the catering industries in Spain, Morocco and Holland to recommend any staff.
The first step to raise standards in our home-grown young is to admit that, for many, unemployment has become a personal choice to avoid hard work – and not an inescapable trap.
Australian PM kills off homosexual marriage push
The Labor party Left are disgusting. They want members of their own party to be forced to vote against their conscience
JULIA Gillard has effectively killed off the prospect of gay marriage by ruling out government legislation and allowing Labor MPs a conscience vote that would be destined to fail.
The prime minister's intervention has fuelled a backlash from the Left of the party, which is set to endorse a push against the PM's proposals at a meeting in Canberra on Sunday.
Ms Gillard says she expects "fireworks" at the conference, arguing that disputes will be a sign the party is not afraid of debating policy ideas.
"I expect and want to see a noisy conference," she said. "That shows we are a political party full of ideas and working through how Australia deals with challenges of today and the challenges of tomorrow."
In a compromise deal on gay marriage, Ms Gillard will allow Labor MPs a conscience vote if a private members' bill is introduced to the parliament.
But she has ruled out government legislation to change the Marriage Act, even if this is endorsed by the national conference.
A conscience vote on gay marriage would be doomed to fail because some members of the Labor Party would oppose it and the Coalition planned to block it.
Advocates of gay marriage have warned they will not be dissuaded from their campaign if a conscience vote failed to pass the parliament. Key Labor Right figures - including some who support gay marriage such as Paul Howes and Mark Arbib - backed the conscience vote.
Labor Left powerbrokers Doug Cameron and Mental Health Minister Mark Butler have vowed to campaign against a conscience vote. Senator Cameron said the conscience vote was a "tactical manoeuvre" by the PM that was "not appropriate".
But Queensland backbencher Graham Perrett, who is a Labor Left convenor and has argued for gay marriage, said people who opposed a change for religious reasons should have the right to vote against it.
Does a Full-Time Homemaker Swap Her Mind for a Mop?
I periodically write and regularly broadcast about male-female issues because I want to help men and women, especially husbands and wives, get along better. But I have developed a secondary reason: to elicit left-wing reactions. They reveal an enormous amount about how the left thinks.
For example, one of the biggest left-wing websites (Daily Kos) wrote that "Dennis Prager advocates marital rape." Why? Because I wrote a column in which I suggested that if a woman loves her husband, and if he is a loving and good man, she might not want to be guided solely by "mood" in deciding whether and when to have sex with him.
And just a few weeks ago, the same website declared me a misogynist for my column on what I believe to have been four negative legacies of feminism for women. I actually wrote the column on behalf of women, yet I was labeled a misogynist. Why? Because I suggested that feminist pressure on women to emphasize career over finding a husband, career over marriage and career over child rearing has not been good for most women or for society. That means, according to the Daily Kos writer, that "basically Prager is upset with contemporary women because they seek a life beyond being confined to domestic space and swapping their brains for a mop."
To suggest that children benefit from having a full-time parent -- which will usually be the mother -- is, in the eyes of the dominant intellectual culture, equivalent to advocating suppression of women and "swapping their brains for a mop." The left views full-time homemakers as individuals who, because of patriarchy and other nefarious forces, have abandoned their minds to the lowest intellectual activity the human being can engage in: homemaking. Being a full-time homemaker, mother and wife is the left's vision of hell.
Why that is so is not my subject here. Rather, I seek to refute the idea that full-time homemaking is intellectually vapid and a waste of a college education.
Let me first state that I have no argument with those mothers who need to or even just wish to work outside the home. My argument is with those who believe that staying at home is necessarily mind-numbing.
Nor do I wish to romanticize child rearing. As a rule, little children don't contribute much to the intellectual life of a parent (although older children who are intellectually curious can spur a parent to seek answers to challenging questions they may not have considered before). Any intellectually alive woman who is a full-time mother must therefore find intellectual stimulation elsewhere.
The point is that she can find such stimulation without leaving her house. Furthermore, the intellectual input she can find is likely to be greater than most women (or men) find working outside the home. There is a reason that about half the audience of my national radio show is female -- they listen to talk radio for hours a day and broaden their knowledge considerably. To the left, the notion that talk radio enhances intellectual development is akin to fish needing bicycles. But that's because the left's greatest achievement is demonizing the right and because they never actually listen to the best of us.
I am syndicated by the Salem Radio Network. My colleagues are Bill Bennett, Mike Gallagher, Michael Medved and Hugh Hewitt. Two of us attended Harvard, one Yale and one Columbia. One of us taught at Harvard, another at the City University of New York. And a third teaches constitutional law at a law school.
In addition to reviewing the news and discussing our own views, we all routinely interview authors and experts -- left and right -- in almost every field. The woman who listens to us regularly will know more about economics, politics, current events, world affairs, American history and religion than the great majority of men and women who work full-time outside of the house.
Lest the latter seem a self-serving suggestion, there are many other opportunities for full-time homemakers to broaden their intellectual horizons: recorded books and a few television networks, for example. And if a woman can get help from grandparents, neighbors, older children or a baby sitter, there are also myriad opportunities for study outside the house -- such as community college classes, book clubs, etc. -- and for volunteer work in intellectually more stimulating areas than most paid work.
Let me give an example of the woman I know best: my wife. She is a non-practicing lawyer with a particular interest in and knowledge of taxation and the economy. She decided to stay home to be a full-time mother to her two boys (one of whom is autistic) and her two nieces (who lost their mother, my wife's sister, to cancer, when they were very young). Between talk radio, History Channel documentaries, BookTV on C-SPAN2, recorded lectures from The Teaching Company/The Great Courses, and constant reading, she has led a first-class intellectual life while shuttling kids, folding laundry and making family dinners.
So it is not only nonsense that full-time homemaking means swapping the mind for a mop. It is also nonsense that the vast majority of paid work outside the home develops the mind. One may prefer to work outside the home for many reasons: a need or desire for extra income; a need to get out of the house; a need to be admired for work beyond making a home; a need for regular interaction with other adults. But the development of the intellect is not necessarily among them.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here or Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.