Blog: Watching Tim Martin squirm about staff shortages in Wetherspoons almost makes Brexit worth it – The Independent


Tim Martin, the Wetherspoons man who helped to fund the Brexit campaign, has complained that we need a “more liberal immigration system”, as he can’t get the staff to work in his pubs, because of Brexit. It almost makes the chaos of the last five years worth it.

Next he should go to Romania and cry: “Please come back, I know I treated you bad but I can change. This time it will be different, I promise. I need you, you know I can’t serve a free pint with a chicken tikka masala on Tuesday Curry Night without you. PLEASE.”

Then Nigel Farage will make a speech that starts: “This is the trouble with these bloody immigrants, they go back over there, not doing our jobs.” And he’ll make a film in which he stands at Dover pointing at foreigners on ships, yelling: “There’s another lot, all leaving for Spain and Italy, what a disgrace. The government needs to be much firmer in patrolling our borders, and tell them they’re not allowed to go.”

Because we need them back here, not just to work in bars and on farms, but because it’s an essential part of our British identity to scream at them to piss off. How can we do that if they’ve all pissed off?

Several chains of restaurants and hotels are saying they can’t open because foreign staff have returned home. So we need to find a way they can work for us, while not actually being here. If they could go home between pouring each drink, that would help. Or they could dangle from the ceiling on a trapeze, serving haddock and chips with a half-price pale ale, while technically only being in our air space.

During the referendum campaign, Tim Martin said the people who warned this would happen were “doomsters”. But to be fair to him, who could possibly have known in advance that getting rid of 188,000 people from abroad who did jobs here, would leave us with a workforce that was 188,000 short?

How could they know that if the people who serve the coffees and pick the strawberries all leave, there would be no one to serve the coffees and pick the strawberries? Once again, it’s all very easy with hindsight.

Two-thirds of this year’s daffodil crop has gone rotten because there weren’t enough pickers, with one daffodil trader saying: “We can’t harvest them, we don’t have enough pickers, we’re losing hundreds of thousands of pounds.”

In a way, this proves the success of Brexit, because one of the main cases for Brexit was the madness of EU regulations. And one of their craziest regulations was that when flowers or vegetables were grown, they were picked and used. Now at last we’ve left the EU, so we’re free to make up our own rules, such as growing stuff and then leaving it to be eaten by maggots.

The extra problem for the daffodil industry, apparently, is that our new sensible rules state that farmers are allowed to bring in seasonal workers but only for “edible crops”. So the easy way round this, if we want the flowers picked, is we all have to start eating daffodils.

The problem for daffodils is they haven’t managed to get the same PR as fish. People who had never given a thought to fish have spent much of the last year screaming: “The bloody Austrians are stealing our whitebait.”

So if the daffodil people could get the right campaign behind them, politicians would soon be yelling about the historic glory of our daffodils and the criminal neglect of seeing OUR daffodils unpicked. Then we’d have to send gunboats to attack the French and kidnap them to come and pick our daffodils, as is their historic duty.

What all this proves is how important it is to keep down the numbers of people in our country. Because we’re a tiny island and if too many of them come here, we have to share everything out and we all get poorer. This is why the most productive way to run an economy is to get rid of as many people as possible in the economy. The less people there are, the richer we get.

And that’s why the wealthiest area in the world is the South Pole. And the wealthiest people ever were Captain Scott’s crew, with no one around for thousands of miles, leaving them to shiver in constant luxury. They were even richer after Captain Oates left, the sponging bastard.

Some Brexit campaigners have made the point that there’s no contradiction between campaigning for Brexit and worrying about the current labour shortage, because immigration was never the main reason for Brexit.

But if you strain really hard to remember, you might recall the odd speech by Brexit supporters, that went: “If the EU gets its way, under current trends everyone in Europe will live here by March 2025, and we’ll have to bring them biscuits in bed every morning or we’ll have broken EU law, and then they’ll all be allowed to bring their wildlife to soothe their mental health, so English people will have to have a hippo in their bath and then Turkey will join and then Pakistan and the moon and we’ll be forced to accept their gravity so everyone will have to bounce and it will take ages to walk anywhere.

“They won’t tell you that but I dare to speak the truth. So vote Leave to get rid of immigrants, then at last you can have a pint in Wetherspoons in peace.”

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