Glen Ruffle: Brexit: a phenomenal chance to rebuild the economy

It is a peculiar thing that many of those moaning so much about Brexit are the same people who can’t afford to get on the housing ladder – particularly as the two are intrinsically linked.

Germany this week reached its greatest ever population level, despite having more deaths than births. The reason? Immigration. Like Britain, Germany has been pursuing a lazy and ultimately immoral policy of opting for easy economic growth at the expense of future generations.

Immigration is cheap growth. Businesses get cheap workers; homeowners get house price growth. More people arrive, more is demanded, and the economy grows. Architects and planners have more to work on; builders benefit from increased demand; electricians and plumbers find more work; and shops expand as people request consumer goods.

Road builders benefit from more highways to construct, while car firms sell more vehicles to move the people around. More teachers are recruited and more medical staff brought in to look after the immigrants.

No matter that more and more countryside has been eroded and subsumed under this urban sprawl; no matter that wildlife has suffered habitat destruction; no matter that communities have been destroyed and beautiful villages eroded by ugly new estates; no matter that landfill sites pile up ever higher with produce that will take millennia to rot; no matter that, ultimately, it will all come to an end and the then surplus housing will cause a catastrophic crash for future generations; immigration boosts demand now; demand fuels the economy now; and the economy comes before all.

When Cameron gave the referendum, the millions of people tired of this destruction in the pursuit of numbers spoke. They said there is more to life than economic growth; nation and community come first. The old structures of economic power needed to change to enable a new generation to burst free.

The essence of uncontrolled immigration is that people are items of production, divorced from anywhere to which they belong and the society that gave them their values. Statehood is reduced to something you purchase or acquire, a hurdle to jump over, an administrative barrier; gone is the notion of family and belonging.

This is of course the EU plan: for free movement to so erode national consciousness that borders would collapse; states becoming regions of Greater Europe. Instead, business leaders, benefitting from the vast open market, have become richer, while the very people to make Eastern European nations prosper have been encouraged away, often to waste their talents in menial jobs in the West.

The erosion of community identity – of nationhood – has minimised the obligation to help one’s nation, as one would one’s own family. The individual in receipt of vast sums has instead argued that their wealth is their business, not others’; there is no moral duty to help society.

Brexit is the great chance to refashion this economy. Instead of more short-term building at the expense of the countryside, controlling immigration is essential.

Instead of paying little for subsidised food produced at unsustainable prices, consumers must appreciate the true cost of eating meat and the true value of farmers.

Instead of moaning that the easy option of exporting to Europe may become a little less profitable, business must look at the great chances of obtaining materials from America and China, Africa and Latin America, for far cheaper than at present.

Brexit must restructure the economy. Whereas in the past a few made huge profits, leaving the rest behind, Brexit will likely see the return of more reasonable profits, closing the gap between rich and poor.

While continuing to pay down the national debt, the government needs to ensure that building conversion takes precedence over construction on virgin, new land. And investment in education, to produce a generation fluent in engineering and technology, will do wonders to correct current imbalances. The government must grab the chance offered by Brexit with both hands; the heritage handed to us by our ancestors, and future generations, depend on it!

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