One really strong pro-immigration argument is the fact that the UK has an aging population.
The “baby boomers” from just after World War II are now retiring and, with domestic birthrates decreasing (for whatever reasons), there might not be enough working people to sustain them if foreign workers weren’t allowed here.
Mr Varoufakis’ words have been supported by Labour’s John McDonnell, who said: “Inward migration often keeps our own economy afloat, filling the skills gaps and supporting our aging population to pay its way. I speak as the grandson of an Irish immigrant, and I have to tell you that it’s been the case for almost a century and a half that migrants have supported this economy and kept it afloat.”
Both of them, along with Green MP Caroline Lucas, have united to put forward a “progressive” case for voting ‘Remain’ in the EU referendum.
Their initiative – Another Europe is Possible – is a response to claims that activists on both sides of the debate have tried to mislead voters.
The Guardian reported: “On Friday Vote Leave, Britain Stronger in Europe and the Treasury were all accused of misleading voters in a report by a cross-party House of Commons committee.
“In an 83-page report, the Treasury committee particularly criticised the leave camp’s “deeply problematic” assertion that exiting the EU would save £350m a week that could be spent on the NHS, because it said that was a gross figure that made no allowance for the rebate and for EU contributions to the UK. The net figure would be about £110m a week, it said.
“The committee also said Britain Stronger in Europe campaign’s claim that the cost of imports could rise by at least £11bn in the event of Brexit was implausible and that its suggestion that 3m jobs are dependent on EU membership was ‘misleading’.”
Mr Varoufakis said Brexit is not the answer to the three issues that have dominated the referendum debate – sovereignty, EU regulations, and claims that immigration is harming public services such as health and education.
He claimed: “The reason public services are failing is the rolling austerity that cloaks a vicious class war against Britain’s poor; a war that would have happened even if the UK border were hermetically sealed.”
Another Europe is Possible expects to mobilise thousands of activists across the UK.
The anti-immigration tactics being used by the Leave campaign in the EU referendum amount to a “divide and rule trick”, Yanis Varoufakis has said.
The former Greek finance minister – who faced down EU institutions in his previous job negotiating with the Troika – said the British establishment was trying to use fear of immigrants to distract from the effects of austerity.
“Lest we forget: turning the native poor against migrant labour is a variant of the old divide and rule trick that the British establishment honed ages ago to dominate the empire,” he said.
“Today the establishment uses the same trick to dominate the domestic natives to hide austerity’s effects and to defect anger towards the ‘other’ – the migrant, the foreigner.”
The warning comes as the Leave campaign ramps up its anti-immigration rhetoric in a bid to deliver victory in next month’s referendum.
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