Friday, 30 January 2009

These oil refinery strikes

This story is simply a symptom of a much larger one, one that has very serious implications for us all.

A series of unofficial strikes broke out across Britain today over plans by oil companies to give jobs to construction workers from Portugal and Italy. The contractors were to work on the giant £200m Lindsey oil refinery at North Killingholme, North Lincolnshire.

The basic background is that any contract over a certain size must be put out to tender right across the European Union. If a foreign company, employing foreign labour, makes the best tender, then they get the job. There's no way that, in Gordon Brown's words, we can have "British jobs for British workers". Because the EU rules simply say that we can't.

This is bad enough of course but think about what happens next. Alistair Darling is talking about spending tens of billions, perhaps hundreds of billions, on infrastructure projects, shiny new trains, lots more windmills, perhaps a Severn Barrage and so on. And yes, part of the argument for this is to pull us out of the recession, to create jobs so that we don't have millions upon millions of people languishing on the dole.

And it will be us taxpayers who have to pay for all of this of course. It might be paid for by borrowing now, but the bill will come home in the future.

Ah, yes, you've spotted it. We want to spend this money so as to provide those British jobs for British workers. That's the whole Keynesian idea of a fiscal stimulus, of the infrastructure building. But under the EU rules, we can't make these jobs only for the British. They have to be advertised right across the EU.

So what we'll end up with is, as Godfrey Bloom has pointed out, "British taxes for foreign workers".

It's about time we left, don't you think, and we ran our economy for us?

1 comment:

SteveUKIP said...

The Peasants Revolt 1381, was when peasants could nolonger stand the low wages and heavy taxes, of King Richard II.

The peasants marched on London. The rebels we promised the earth but ended up getting nothing after they disbanded, and their leader Wat Tyler was murdered.

I believe a similar mood has taken root around the Lindsay Oil Refinery dispute. A union official said today that the argument was not really about the Lindsay Oil Refinery.

It is about the whole process of putting contracts out to tender, and the contract winner then brings in their own workers from another EU country, shutting out local British workers.

This latest contract at the Lindsay Oil Refinery was just the last straw.

These contract workers have been pushed to far.

They have had enough!