Sunday, 4 November 2007

Nigel Hastilow's Enoch Powell and Immigration comments.

Nigel Hastilow's Enoch Powell and Immigration comments.
Now, considering that at some time in the future, I would like to become involved in politics, I'm going to be very careful about what I write on this subject.

I've heard some very strong language used to describe this situation from the media. What I haven't heard on the news is what exactly Nigel Hastilow had to say in the newspaper column. Peter Hain told Andrew Marr this morning that Hastilow's comments showed the racist underbelly of the Conservative party.

So what did Nigel actually say?

In a column for the Express and Star newspaper Nigel said: "When you ask most people in the Black Country what the single biggest problem facing the country is, most say immigration."

That to me sounds very much like a statement of fact, and Nigel is relaying the views of the public in his canvassing area of Halesowen and Rowley Regis.

Nigel went on to say that "Many insist: 'Enoch Powell was right'. Enoch, once MP for Wolverhampton South-West, was sacked from the Conservative front bench and marginalised politically for his 1968 'rivers of blood' speech, warning that uncontrolled immigration would change our country irrevocably. He was right. It has changed dramatically."

Again I feel that Hastilow is relaying the opinion of the people he has met in the area, and cannot be criticised for saying that uncontrolled immigration has changed our country. If it hasn't changed why are Labour's think tank (the IPPR) coming out with such rubbish as "downgrading Christmas" to improve race relations? And why have we got to the situation where our own citizens are trying to kill us in terrorist attacks?

Hastilow also wrote: "They have more or less given up complaining about the way we roll out the red carpet for foreigners while leaving the locals to fend for themselves."

This is just more of the same relaying of the local mood.

What do I think? I think that it was ill judged to bring up Enoch Powell. No matter how truthful Hastilow's comment's are, some people are always going to link Powell to racism. I don't think Nigel should be asked to step down as a candidate, but he should be shown the error of his ways.

No doubt a lecture from Caroline Spelman and the embarrassment of this whole affair will be lesson enough for Nigel.

Peter Hain calling for Nigel's head is frankly pathetic when his own glorious leader Gordon Brown is coming out with "British jobs for British workers."

Update: Nigel Hastilow stepped down after meeting with Caroline Spelman. He said: "I am very sorry that any remarks of mine have undermined the progress David Cameron has made on the issue of immigration, as on so many other issues."

I'm sorry to see this happen, another man has had to step down after being accused of racism without making a racist comment. Several times on the TV today I have watched news readers repeating what Nigel wrote, then turn to guest Labour politicians and ask: "but isn't that true?"

Isn't it a shame when telling the truth can seriously damage your career?

Sir Ian Blair. please take note.

Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device


Mark Heenan said...

The simple point is that if you have any sense whatsoever you don't ever get any where near the point of someone credibly being able to say that you even remotely agree with Powell. It's the sheer mindless stupidity of it that gets me. It's not like he said it down the pub after a bellyful of beer, he wrote it out and put it in a newspaper... Muppet.

Anonymous said...

yet again a good man steps down for telling the truth and not what he thinks will score him points this country needs MPs like Mr Hastilow He has his finger on the pulse of the working man .If there was awar and we had to fight for our countrys survival how many immigrant would be by your side i bet mr hastilow would be the englishman has got nowhere to go unlike the immigrants

Daily Referendum said...


I agree. What he said could be seen as reasonable coming from anyone but a politician. He's not guilty of being racist but he is guilty of being politically naïve.

Anonymous said...

I think it's unhelpful that anyone who mentions immigration in less than delightful terms is denigrated in this way. Hastilow made some mild comments, with which I agree, but being a politician he is not allowed to voice such opinions in public. This is bad for the country, as none of the overwhelming problems we are now facing will be sorted out if we are not "allowed" to talk about them truthfully.

Anonymous said...

powell was a black country man and is seen in a much different light in the midlands than elsewhere. i have known people far to my right from london react with horror when i have praised enoch. best pm we never had.

Anonymous said...

I am old enough to remember Enoch Powell and much of what he said. It should be remembered that he was a very clever man. He went to Wolverhampton Grammar School, (remember those?), along with my late father in law. Powell was not only a Greek scholar but at that time, was the only person to join the army as a private and end up as a Brigadeer in peacetime!

He said that if the present rate of immigration continued, (then of course), we would witness rivers of blood in the streets. He was to be proved right as we subsequently suffered from race riots in several places not least in Dudley almost next to his constituency.

His thinking was that if we accomodated too many immigrants they would take our jobs and that would cause rioting.

Perhaps, as we keep being told that immigration is good for us and they do not "steal" our jobs, it would have been wise not to quote him on this occasion but I can see why he did.

Incidentally, has anyone noticed that nowadays when anyone makes any derogative comment about imigration they find it necessary to precede their comments with words about how good immigration is for us. They have to do this else they are accused of racism.

John Rohan said...

Powell was also the only known soldier from WWII to rise from the ranks of private to Brigadier general during the war.

But he was kind of a nut on other issues, he was totally paranoid about the CIA, for example. Still, on the issue of immigration, he was spot on (on my own web site, i crunched the numbers and his predictions were even lower than reality).

What happened to Nigel Hastilow was pure stupidity. On his own website, he says that privately the party leadership told him they agreed with what he said, they were just glad he said it, and not them!

Andromeda said...

Should Nigel Hastilow remain loyal to the Conservative Party that sacked him as its Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for saying "Enoch was right"?

Vote on this at:

Nigel Hastilow says he wants to do nothing to harm the Conservative Party of which he is still a member and confirms that he wants a Conservative government.

What is the point of remaining loyal to a Party led by a leader infamous for his lack of policies and principles, who predictably had him sacked the moment he voiced the genuine concerns of his prospective constituents?

Does this mean he lacks the qualities to be either a career politician (because he spoke the truth) or a conviction politician (because he apologised for speaking the truth)?

Did he BLUNDER into this controversy without a strategy?

Is it good riddance to someone who will only enrage his masters for not toeing the party line and disappoint his constituents for not sticking to his guns?