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The institutions that have now been banned may have brought more than 11,000 people into the UK each year, according to a press release from UK Border Agency.
“Too many institutions were offering international students an immigration service rather than an education and too many students have come to the UK with the aim of getting work and bringing over family members,” said Green. “Only first-class education providers should be given licences to sponsor international students.”
The press release stated, one college advertised classes even though the website said it was shut for maintenance, while another could not even produce a list of students enrolled or a timetable of classes. On inspection, others could not produce any records of student attendance, or evidence of checking student qualifications.
“Widespread abuse of the student visa system has gone on for too long and the changes we have made are beginning to bite,” said Green.
In addition to more rigorous inspections, colleges that want to keep bringing in international students must also meet new higher sponsorship standards to ensure they are fulfilling their immigration responsibilities. If they do not meet these standards, they will be removed from the sponsorship register.
This news comes shortly after the UK Border Agency announced more than 2,000 banks and financial institutions who can no longer provide evidence to verify a student has sufficient funds for their course. If a bank is on the list, the student citing that institution will not be granted a Tier 4 visa.
The changes to the student route is part of the government’s attempt to substantially reduce levels of immigration to the UK.
Written by Frank Manning
For British society to return to normal and remove the fear of gang violence from the public, these sentences had to happen.
The debate over the sentences handed down to the rioters who ran rampant through London has sparked a heated argument over whether they are deserved or too harsh.
However, it has not followed the usual split between left and right. Traditional elements of the Conservative party have lauded the sentences as a return to hard-line punishment of criminals, yet libertarians have urged caution against imposing authoritarian penalties simply to placate a baying media and the 81 percent of the public who believe the punishments are either “about right” or “too soft”.
Four years in jail for inflammatory comments on Facebook – which had no actual consequences other than to distract police – appears ludicrous at first when compared to the short sentences we usually read about in the tabloid press. They are even more shocking when considered in light of the debacle earlier this year when it was suggested rapists could be out of prison in less than two years.
The reasoning behind this approach to sentencing is about more than just public opinion though, despite the fact it played an obvious part.
David Cameron sensed the public mood well and commended the sentences as a strong message to would-be rioters, leaving Ed Miliband with little room to manoeuvre. Towing the tough sentencing line would please a public seeking retribution but would risk angering Guardian readers and cheerleaders such as Polly Toynbee. Meanwhile, denouncing them as unfair would undo the pressure Labour have managed to put the government under concerning the supposedly soft approach Ken Clarke has been taking to justice reform.
It is possible, though, to look beyond these opposing viewpoints and come to a different conclusion.
In terms of setting a precedent for future sentences, four years for the two Facebook troublemakers is clearly unsustainable. What they wrote was idiotic, ill-judged and ill-timed, but if incendiary comments on social networks lead to four years in prison, the cost of the Ministry of Justice may dwarf even the monolithic NHS.
However, these sentences are not for the criminals themselves. The latter are the unfortunate recipients of a stark warning to society in general that reckless criminal behaviour will not be tolerated. Whatever caused these riots, they were able to grow exponentially due to a sense that law and order had broken down and criminality would go unpunished.
The usual suspects of Polly Toynbee, Laurie Penny, Harriet Harman and Jody McIntyre have effectively given carte blanche to any disaffected youth who feels the world owes them a living, excusing any and all behaviour even when it destroys communities.
It’s noticeable that discourse with the rioters themselves has been limited to brief awkward interviews for the evening news. Instead, political commentators have used them to further their own world views without asking the permission of those affected.
Considering the excuses the liberal-Left have been so keen to espouse, tough sentences are the last bastion available to instil personal responsibility to a minority of young people who have been taught far too much about their rights and not enough about their responsibilities.
Without proof that the justice system can and will punish criminals on the news and on the front page of every newspaper, we could witness the exact same events the next time the police need to use force or carry out a stop & search.
From a libertarian point of view it is unfortunate that a small group of muppets have to feel more than the normal force of the law. But for British society to return to normal and remove the fear of gang violence from the public, these sentences had to happen.
Frank Manning is a Researcher for the civil liberties pressure group, ‘Big Brother Watch’ and writes in a personal capacity.
- The Full Picture Of Sentences Handed Down To Rioters (huffingtonpost.com)
- Woman wins riot sentence appeal (bbc.co.uk)
- How sad to live in a society that won’t invest in its young | Polly Toynbee (guardian.co.uk)
- Were Facebook Planners Of U.K. Riots Unfairly Punished? (allfacebook.com)
- Moral outrage at rioters fixes nothing: the only remedies are liberal | Polly Toynbee (guardian.co.uk)
- Facebook rioters say incitement was just a joke (rt.com)
- Riots sentencing: a sinister attempt to upend the judicial process | Vera Baird (guardian.co.uk)
- Eilat terrorist attack related conspiracy theory of the day, courtesy of Jody McIntyre (cifwatch.com)
- Riot inciter to appeal as sentences panned – The Age (news.google.com)
By Max Hastings
A few weeks after the U.S. city of Detroit was ravaged by 1967 race riots in which 43 people died, I was shown around the wrecked areas by a black reporter named Joe Strickland.
He said: ‘Don’t you believe all that stuff people here are giving media folk about how sorry they are about what happened. When they talk to each other, they say: “It was a great fire, man!” ’
I am sure that is what many of the young rioters, black and white, who have burned and looted in England through the past few shocking nights think today.
It was fun. It made life interesting. It got people to notice them. As a girl looter told a BBC reporter, it showed ‘the rich’ and the police that ‘we can do what we like’.
If you live a normal life of absolute futility, which we can assume most of this week’s rioters do, excitement of any kind is welcome. The people who wrecked swathes of property, burned vehicles and terrorised communities have no moral compass to make them susceptible to guilt or shame.
Most have no jobs to go to or exams they might pass. They know no family role models, for most live in homes in which the father is unemployed, or from which he has decamped.
They are illiterate and innumerate, beyond maybe some dexterity with computer games and BlackBerries.
They are essentially wild beasts. I use that phrase advisedly, because it seems appropriate to young people bereft of the discipline that might make them employable; of the conscience that distinguishes between right and wrong.
They respond only to instinctive animal impulses — to eat and drink, have sex, seize or destroy the accessible property of others.
Their behaviour on the streets resembled that of the polar bear which attacked a Norwegian tourist camp last week. They were doing what came naturally and, unlike the bear, no one even shot them for it.
A former London police chief spoke a few years ago about the ‘feral children’ on his patch — another way of describing the same reality.
The depressing truth is that at the bottom of our society is a layer of young people with no skills, education, values or aspirations. They do not have what most of us would call ‘lives’: they simply exist.
Nobody has ever dared suggest to them that they need feel any allegiance to anything, least of all Britain or their community. They do not watch royal weddings or notice Test matches or take pride in being Londoners or Scousers or Brummies.
Not only do they know nothing of Britain’s past, they care nothing for its present.
They have their being only in video games and street-fights, casual drug use and crime, sometimes petty, sometimes serious.
The notions of doing a nine-to-five job, marrying and sticking with a wife and kids, taking up DIY or learning to read properly, are beyond their imaginations.
Last week, I met a charity worker who is trying to help a teenage girl in East London to get a life for herself. There is a difficulty, however: ‘Her mother wants her to go on the game.’ My friend explained: ‘It’s the money, you know.’
An underclass has existed throughout history, which once endured appalling privation. Its spasmodic outbreaks of violence, especially in the early 19th century, frightened the ruling classes.
Its frustrations and passions were kept at bay by force and draconian legal sanctions, foremost among them capital punishment and transportation to the colonies.
Today, those at the bottom of society behave no better than their forebears, but the welfare state has relieved them from hunger and real want.
When social surveys speak of ‘deprivation’ and ‘poverty’, this is entirely relative. Meanwhile, sanctions for wrongdoing have largely vanished.
When Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith recently urged employers to take on more British workers and fewer migrants, he was greeted with a hoarse laugh.
Every firm in the land knows that an East European — for instance — will, first, bother to turn up; second, work harder; and third, be better-educated than his or her British counterpart.Who do we blame for this state of affairs?
Ken Livingstone, contemptible as ever, declares the riots to be a result of the Government’s spending cuts. This recalls the remarks of the then leader of Lambeth Council, ‘Red Ted’ Knight, who said after the 1981 Brixton riots that the police in his borough ‘amounted to an army of occupation’.
But it will not do for a moment to claim the rioters’ behaviour reflects deprived circumstances or police persecution.
Of course it is true that few have jobs, learn anything useful at school, live in decent homes, eat meals at regular hours or feel loyalty to anything beyond their local gang.
This is not, however, because they are victims of mistreatment or neglect.
It is because it is fantastically hard to help such people, young or old, without imposing a measure of compulsion which modern society finds unacceptable. These kids are what they are because nobody makes them be anything different or better.
A key factor in delinquency is lack of effective sanctions to deter it. From an early stage, feral children discover that they can bully fellow pupils at school, shout abuse at people in the streets, urinate outside pubs, hurl litter from car windows, play car radios at deafening volumes, and, indeed, commit casual assaults with only a negligible prospect of facing rebuke, far less retribution.
John Stuart Mill wrote in his great 1859 essay On Liberty: ‘The liberty of the individual must be thus far limited; he must not make himself a nuisance to other people.’
Yet every day up and down the land, this vital principle of civilised societies is breached with impunity.
Anyone who reproaches a child, far less an adult, for discarding rubbish, making a racket, committing vandalism or driving unsociably will receive in return a torrent of obscenities, if not violence.
So who is to blame? The breakdown of families, the pernicious promotion of single motherhood as a desirable state, the decline of domestic life so that even shared meals are a rarity, have all contributed importantly to the condition of the young underclass.
The social engineering industry unites to claim that the conventional template of family life is no longer valid.
And what of the schools? I do not think they can be blamed for the creation of a grotesquely self-indulgent, non-judgmental culture.
This has ultimately been sanctioned by Parliament, which refuses to accept, for instance, that children are more likely to prosper with two parents than with one, and that the dependency culture is a tragedy for those who receive something for nothing.
The judiciary colludes with social services and infinitely ingenious lawyers to assert the primacy of the rights of the criminal and aggressor over those of law-abiding citizens, especially if a young offender is involved.
The police, in recent years, have developed a reputation for ignoring yobbery and bullying, or even for taking the yobs’ side against complainants.
‘The problem,’ said Bill Pitt, the former head of Manchester’s Nuisance Strategy Unit, ‘is that the law appears to be there to protect the rights of the perpetrator, and does not support the victim.’
Police regularly arrest householders who are deemed to have taken ‘disproportionate’ action to protect themselves and their property from burglars or intruders. The message goes out that criminals have little to fear from ‘the feds’.
Figures published earlier this month show that a majority of ‘lesser’ crimes — which include burglary and car theft, and which cause acute distress to their victims — are never investigated, because forces think it so unlikely they will catch the perpetrators.
How do you inculcate values in a child whose only role model is footballer Wayne Rooney — a man who is bereft of the most meagre human graces?
How do you persuade children to renounce bad language when they hear little else from stars on the BBC?
A teacher, Francis Gilbert, wrote five years ago in his book Yob Nation: ‘The public feels it no longer has the right to interfere.’
Discussing the difficulties of imposing sanctions for misbehaviour or idleness at school, he described the case of a girl pupil he scolded for missing all her homework deadlines.
The youngster’s mother, a social worker, telephoned him and said: ‘Threatening to throw my daughter off the A-level course because she hasn’t done some work is tantamount to psychological abuse, and there is legislation which prevents these sorts of threats.
‘I believe you are trying to harm my child’s mental well-being, and may well take steps . . . if you are not careful.’
That story rings horribly true. It reflects a society in which teachers have been deprived of their traditional right to arbitrate pupils’ behaviour. Denied power, most find it hard to sustain respect, never mind control.
I never enjoyed school, but, like most children until very recent times, did the work because I knew I would be punished if I did not. It would never have occurred to my parents not to uphold my teachers’ authority. This might have been unfair to some pupils, but it was the way schools functioned for centuries, until the advent of crazy ‘pupil rights’.
I recently received a letter from a teacher who worked in a county’s pupil referral unit, describing appalling difficulties in enforcing discipline. Her only weapon, she said, was the right to mark a disciplinary cross against a child’s name for misbehaviour.
Having repeatedly and vainly asked a 15-year-old to stop using obscene language, she said: ‘Fred, if you use language like that again, I’ll give you a cross.’
He replied: ‘Give me an effing cross, then!’ Eventually, she said: ‘Fred, you have three crosses now. You must miss your next break.’
He answered: ‘I’m not missing my break, I’m going for an effing fag!’ When she appealed to her manager, he said: ‘Well, the boy’s got a lot going on at home at the moment. Don’t be too hard on him.’
This is a story repeated daily in schools up and down the land.
A century ago, no child would have dared to use obscene language in class. Today, some use little else. It symbolises their contempt for manners and decency, and is often a foretaste of delinquency.
If a child lacks sufficient respect to address authority figures politely, and faces no penalty for failing to do so, then other forms of abuse — of property and person — come naturally.
So there we have it: a large, amoral, brutalised sub-culture of young British people who lack education because they have no will to learn, and skills which might make them employable. They are too idle to accept work waitressing or doing domestic labour, which is why almost all such jobs are filled by immigrants.
They have no code of values to dissuade them from behaving anti-socially or, indeed, criminally, and small chance of being punished if they do so.
They have no sense of responsibility for themselves, far less towards others, and look to no future beyond the next meal, sexual encounter or TV football game.
They are an absolute deadweight upon society, because they contribute nothing yet cost the taxpayer billions. Liberal opinion holds they are victims, because society has failed to provide them with opportunities to develop their potential.
Most of us would say this is nonsense. Rather, they are victims of a perverted social ethos, which elevates personal freedom to an absolute, and denies the underclass the discipline — tough love — which alone might enable some of its members to escape from the swamp of dependency in which they live.
Only education — together with politicians, judges, policemen and teachers with the courage to force feral humans to obey rules the rest of us have accepted all our lives — can provide a way forward and a way out for these people.
They are products of a culture which gives them so much unconditionally that they are let off learning how to become human beings. My dogs are better behaved and subscribe to a higher code of values than the young rioters of Tottenham, Hackney, Clapham and Birmingham.
Unless or until those who run Britain introduce incentives for decency and impose penalties for bestiality which are today entirely lacking, there will never be a shortage of young rioters and looters such as those of the past four nights, for whom their monstrous excesses were ‘a great fire, man’.
Cameron: Pockets of our society that are not just broken, but frankly sick.
By Steve Tolley
The political argument over whether Government cuts fuelled the violence seen in London and across the country in the past few days has begun in earnest.
In a heated exchange on Newsnight last night, deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman told Education Secretary Michael Gove that “short-sighted” Government policies like “cutting” the Education Maintenance Allowance, the trebling of tuition fees and closing job centres were adding to a situation where young people feel they are not being listened to.
Gove said it is “ludicrous” to claim people looting shops and burning down buildings were concerned about the “reform” of the EMA. He accused her of “speaking out of both sides of her mouth” for blaming Government policy after saying she wanted to elevate the debate above party politics.
Harman said: “The truth is the Government should be on the side of young people. And you are not…We want people to have opportunities although nothing justifies people who have not got opportunities taking and robbing.”
Gove responded: “I do not want any more of your double dealing, out of one side of your mouth saying you are going to show solidarity with the Government and with legitimate forces of order and on the other side try to make partisan points.”
There was widespread rioting, looting and arson in London on Sunday and Monday night and while 16,000 police on the streets last night meant the city was relatively quiet, trouble flared up in Manchester, three men died in Birmingham and a police station was fire bombed in Nottingham.
In his statement yesterday, Prime Minister David Cameron said the “sickening scenes” were “criminality, pure and simple”. During the election he spoke about failures in education, political disenchantment and social breakdown leading to Britain’s being a broken society, although he dropped the leitmotif over fears the negative message would turn off voters.
Alongside Cameron’s strong rhetoric against the rioters, he has today also acknowledged that social problems have played a role in creating the violence that has exploded over the past few days. “There are pockets of our society that are not just broken, but frankly sick,” he said. An interesting map on the Financial Times’ website contrasts the areas of London that have seen the worst violence with youth unemployment figures and high deprivation levels.
Nobel Prize winner Professor Joseph Stiglitz was among the first to wade into the debate in an interview with Channel 4 news. He said when people see nothing but long term unemployment they lose faith in society. He suggested that while a contributing factor, the picture is more complex than simply cuts leading to violence.
He said: “Our market economy is not working and our Governments are not succeeding in helping the market do what it has to do. In too many countries they are going in the opposite direction showing very little compassion. I worry the UK is one of those countries and that is very much connected to some of the scenes in London.”
On Thursday, a recalled Parliament will be the stage for a tussle for the public’s hearts and minds over links between economic policy and social unrest. The civil disorder will be debated and George Osborne will give a statement on the economy in the midst of volatile stock markets, falling growth projections, the Eurocrisis and the US credit rating downgrade.
The Government’s understandable hard-line could give way to ’Broken Society’ thinking if and when the violence recedes. Neutralising Labour’s line of attack will not be easy without finding other factors to pin the violence on, whether that is dissatisfaction with the police, poor discipline at home or other long-term social problems. But as a political historian, Cameron will know that a Prime Minister not in control of the streets does not remain PM for long, so for now he is showing his teeth. His top priority is ensuring and convincing people they are safe in their communities.
Gove told Harman the argument she was making was below her and the Labour Party. If Labour are careful, they could capitalise politically. But the party must be sure that in looking to explain the violence it is not accused of political opportunism with even Labour bloggers on Labourlist calling on the party to put politics aside and get behind Cameron until order is restored.
If the party can convince voters Government policy has in any way contributed to the violence, the days of the nasty party could return to haunt the Conservatives, adding extra stress to the coalition. But it will be a very difficult political move to get right. With emotion running high, get it wrong and the wrath of Michael Gove will be the least of Ed Miliband’s worries.
- London riots: Harriet Harman attempts to link EMA cut and tuition fees to the anarchy in Britain’s cities (blogs.telegraph.co.uk)
- pb:: Boris Johnson, London Mayor, calls for conservatives UK countrywide drastic police cuts to be scrapped after riots (guardian.co.uk)
- Minister hails police riot action (bbc.co.uk)
- Riotous Behaviour [Nigel Dunn] (ecademy.com)
- Gove: Discipline and values key (bbc.co.uk)
- Riots and the righteous: now comes the game of blame | Michael White (guardian.co.uk)
- Hundreds arrested as riots spread across England (independent.co.uk)
- David Cameron flies back to UK for emergency meeting on riots (guardian.co.uk)
- David Cameron chairs emergency Cobra meeting after third night of riots (guardian.co.uk)
- How can Andy Burnham possibly disagree with Michael Gove? He doesn’t have a choice (blogs.telegraph.co.uk)
”Since yesterday there are more police on the street, more people have been arrested and more people are being charged and prosecuted.
And let me pay tribute to the bravery of those police officers and indeed everyone working for our emergency services.
In total there have been 750 arrests in London since Saturday, with more than 160 people being charged.
Today, major police operations are under way as I speak to arrest the criminals who were not picked up last night but who were picked up on closed circuit television cameras.
Picture by picture, these criminals are being identified, arrested and we will not let any phoney concerns about human rights get in the way of the publication of these pictures and arrest of these individuals.
As I speak, sentences are also being passed, courts sat through the night last night and will do again tonight.
It is for the courts to sentence but I would expect anyone convicted of violent disorder will be sent to prison.
We needed a fight back and a fight back is under way.
We have seen the worst of Britain but I also believe we have seen some of the best of Britain: the million people who have signed up on Facebook to support the police; communities coming together in the clean-up operations.
But there is absolutely no room for complacency and there is much more to be done.
Overnight we saw the same appalling violence and thuggery that we have seen in London in new cities, including Birmingham, Manchester and Nottingham.
In the West Midlands, three men were killed in a hit-and-run in Birmingham and the police are working round the clock to get to the bottom of what happened and bring the perpetrator to justice.
In Birmingham, over 160 arrests were made.
In Salford, up to 1,000 youths were attacking the police at the height of the disturbance.
Across Greater Manchester, more than 100 arrests were made and, in Nottinghamshire, Canning Circus police station was firebombed and over 80 arrests were made.
This continued violence is simply not acceptable and it will be stopped.
We will not put up with this in our country, we will not allow a culture of fear to exist on our streets.
Let me be clear, at Cobra this morning we agreed full contingency planning is going ahead.
Whatever resources the police need they will get, whatever tactics police feel they need to employ, they will have legal backing to do so.
We will do whatever is necessary to restore law and order on to our streets.
Every contingency is being looked at, nothing is off the table.
The police are already authorised to use baton rounds and we agreed at Cobra that while they are not currently needed, we now have in place contingency plans for water cannon to be available at 24 hours’ notice.
It is all too clear that we have a big problem with gangs in our country. For too long there had been a lack of focus on the complete lack of respect shown by these groups of thugs.
I’m clear that they are in no way representative of the vast majority of young people in our country who despise them, frankly, as much as the rest of us do.
But there are pockets of our society that are not just broken but frankly sick.
When we see children as young as 12 and 13 looting and laughing, when we see the disgusting sight of an injured young man with people pretending to help him while they are robbing him, it is clear that there are things that are badly wrong with our society.
For me, the root cause of this mindless selfishness is the same thing I have spoken about for years.
It is a complete lack of responsibility in parts of our society, people allowed to feel the world owes them something, that their rights outweigh their responsibilities and their actions do not have consequences.
Well, they do have consequences.
We need to have a clearer code of standards and values that we expect people to live by and stronger penalties if they cross the line.
Restoring a stronger sense of responsibility across our society in every town, in every street, in every estate is something I am determined to do.
Tomorrow Cobra will meet again, Cabinet will meet, I will make a statement to Parliament, I’ll set out in full the measures that we will take to help businesses that have been affected, to help rebuild communities, to help rebuild the shops and buildings that have been damaged, to make sure the homeless are rehoused, to help local authorities in all the ways that are necessary.
But today, right now, the priority is still clear: we will take every action necessary to bring order back to our streets.”
- Fightback is working, says David Cameron (independent.co.uk)
- Cameron: Police can use water cannon (guardian.co.uk)
- David Cameron deploys 10,000 more police to stop London riots – The Washington Post (policyabcs.wordpress.com)
- Reaction to riots across England (bbc.co.uk)
- The Great Riot of London: The Stakes for David Cameron (time.com)
- UK riots: Hundreds of arrests around the country as yobs find new targets (mirror.co.uk)
- London quieter as16,000 police flood streets (vanguardngr.com)
- Hundreds arrested as riots spread across England (independent.co.uk)
- Birmingham: 2% Attack Majority As Anti-Social Elements Organize Rioting, Looting – For A Fourth Night (lostchildreninthewilderness.wordpress.com)
- David Cameron chairs emergency Cobra meeting after third night of riots (guardian.co.uk)