An exchange on twitter with Chris Dillow whose stumblings and mumblings are always worth a read, raised the issue of immigration and jobs. A familiar subject most usually heard in the "immigrants come here and steal our jobs" kind of argument - or indeed in cries such as "British Jobs for British Workers".
For what it's worth, I take the view that this argument gets its cause and effect in the wrong order. Immigrants come here because there are jobs. Indeed Chris provided a link to an interesting piece explaining how the immigration/jobs link isn't as plain as it is sometimes presented and it concludes;
"...that there is absolutely no discernible correlation between the areas where new migrants from Eastern Europe settled and changes in the claimant count. More sophisticated analysis shows pretty much the same thing; and using other data sources, and other definitions of migrant, likewise."
So my question is this: why, when UK unemployment levels are high and rising, does economic migration - people moving to the UK to work - persist?
To bring it right down to Cullingworth - why are all the workers in the chicken factories immigrants?