“economic downturn is so acute it is causing many to consider leaving the country..”

In yesterday’s Irish Times, the Republic of Ireland’s President, Mary McAleese, was telling anyone who would listen that “Ireland’s young people have the sort of can-do mentality, combined with education and confidence, that is needed to lift the country out of its gloom.” Elaine Byrne chipped in on the opinion pages – “Rising generation will regenerate a better Ireland”. Unfortunately for their argument, the same edition carried these details from the latest Irish Times /Behaviour Attitudes opinion poll.

THE VAST majority (72 per cent) of people want to see a reduction in the number of non-Irish immigrants living here, according to an Irish Times /Behaviour Attitudes opinion poll. Overall, a total of 43 per cent say they would like to see some, but not all, immigrants leave the State, while 29 per cent would like to see most immigrants leave. In contrast, just over a quarter (26 per cent) would like to see the number of immigrants remain as it is.

In a reversal of trends from polls in recent years, younger people’s attitudes towards immigration have hardened the most. For example, 81 per cent of those aged 18 to 24 would like to see the number of immigrants fall, compared to 69 per cent in the 25-44 age group. People in rural areas and those from less well-off backgrounds are also more likely to support a reduction in the number of foreign workers based here. The findings are contained in a national poll on “Ireland Today” of 1,004 adults. It was conducted between October 12th and 26th this year at 100 sampling points across the State. The economic downturn is so acute it is causing many to consider leaving the country.

Apparently, it’s the lack of jobs which has brought a change in attitudes to migration.

Thousands of young people are adjusting to the boredom and poverty that comes with unemployment. Others are lowering their expectations, working in low-paid jobs outside the areas in which they are qualified. Emigration is emerging as a serious option for a new generation of young people.

Today’s poll shows that some 40 per cent of those aged 18 to 24 feel they are likely to emigrate within the next five years. Another 15 per cent say they don’t know what they will do.

The numbers considering emigration fall off significantly among older age groups. A total of 22 per cent of 25-34-year-olds feel it is likely they will leave the country in search of work, falling to 7 per cent among 35-44-year-olds.

Young people from both lower and higher groups are just as likely to be considering emigration as an option (although those in rural areas are more likely to remain in the country).

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  • Mack

    Youth unemployment is sky high. That’s why we need to focus on policies that will aid job creation, even where it means reducing incomes for those currently in employment.

    That means increasing the competitiveness of Irish firms.

    It means prioritising pay cuts over job losses.

    It mean prioritising less hours per employee and less total pay, as opposed to more hours for the same pay (which will shut out new entrants)

    It may mean cutting employer taxes such as employer PRSI and commercial rates

    It needs to mean breaking up the opening up state protected sectors to competition (professional services, ESB) etc to reduce costs

    It means prioritising capital investment over current spending (and the income levels within)

    It means supporting companies that will create jobs

  • joeCanuck

    younger people’s attitudes towards immigration have hardened the most.

    As is pointed out later in the article, this group suffers more comparatively from unemployment so that’s hardly surprising.

    Submit word is “young”.

  • Panic, These Ones Likes It Up Em.

    Fianna Fáil must be run out of the country as the first policy.

    This has to be done before any talk/hope of even planning a recovery is contemplated.

    If the people of Ireland are going to take the running of the country as a serious task the elimination of Fianna Fáil is the first item on the agenda.

    They as a political party are institutionally corrupt and are irredeemable.

  • Pete Baker

    And who’s going to vote them out, Panic?

  • Angus Baxter

    The results of this poll aren’t surprising but certainly disappointing. While the rest of the world tolerates Paddies working in “their” countries, it transpires the Irish who remain at home want immigrants out of Ireland. Ireland’s swift increase in wealth was largely attained through hand outs from the EEC which they were happy to take, and subsequently squander. How rich it is that the country which supplies the endless louts in Celtic shirts to the rest of the world, blame migrants for their own financial misgivings.
    Short memories I think.

  • pete whitcroft

    A co-worker of mine from the Republic who is an Orange and Black member thinks there will be Irish Unity again soon, as they will want to join the UK to avoid having to fight for food parcels from Africa.
    Any country that is spending twice as much as they are making is in for trouble.
    Spend on locally produced food and locally manufactured goods.
    Newry, Enniskillen, Strabane, Derry, Sprucefield, The Outlet and Belfast are the places to own commercial property.
    God help Dundalk, Cavan, Sligo and Letterkenny.
    During the summer I saw billboard advertising in Co.Mayo!!!! discouraging people from shopping up North.
    Times are tough and what is NAMA going to make from the acres of houses that noboby wants or can borrow to buy.

  • Panic, These Ones Likes It Up Em.

    Peter Baker said

    “4.And who’s going to vote them out, Panic?”

    Sadly when you have Enda Kenny as the leader of the opposition it frightens the electorate and discourages the electorate from voting out FF.

    How lucky some politicians/political parties are that the quality of their opposition is so poor.

    If Fine Gael had Richard Bruton as leader it is my belief that the electorate would be only too happy to get rid of FF but alas they do not have faith in Kenny and if I am honest neither do I.

  • Realist

    males:
    The Irish Guards and RIR for the brightest.

    The US Army for those who don’t have a degree.

    Good looking females will always find a way to get by. For non good looking females, Tyrone beckons.

  • In general the ‘Pope’s Children’ are a bunch of lazy, spoilt, greedy bastards. If a charismatic figure decides to start a blackshirt style movement in the Republic (like a Youth Defense without the cumbersome morality), he would do quite well.

    I never saw such a nation of selfish whingers and I have lived in a few places. They moan about the jobs and the economy while flocking to Newry and to Tescos to do their shopping. The downturn in the Republic is a blessing to NI.

    Among the property owning ‘new poor’ there is next to no sense of enterprise, no sense of community spirit. It is a wasteland, I would rather see the Poles and the Lithuanians stay and that crowd emigrate.

    Rory

  • Angus Baxter,

    “While the rest of the world tolerates Paddies working in “their” countries”

    “Tolerates” LOL! Fortunately the rest of the world isn’t the West of Scotland or some of the more bigoted ghettos in NI. It must depress you no end that most other countries don’t view the Irish through orange blinkers like you and welcome them as they tend to be well educated and, horror of horrors, are well liked.

    “How rich it is that the country which supplies the endless louts in Celtic shirts.”

    Your Rangers shirt is too tight and is cutting off circulation to your brain. I think for endless louts we’ll have to give the award to your pals in the gers (cf Manchester, Romania etc).

    LOL! I can’t believe I responded to such hate-motivated gibberish.

    Regarding immigration attitudes in ROI: It’s unfair on the immigrants to allow them in when times are good and then turn on them when times are bad. Poor showing but typical in every country that’s suffering a downturn.

  • USIrishExile

    Ah, the “generous” Irish. Take all they can get off the EU for decades, then when they get rich and greedy enough complain about giving back to Brussels it and don’t want top share the wealth with the newer EU members. Then the rich Irish vote No in the first referendum and then wise up in the second. Next move ? Deport all the hard(er) working Poles, Russians, Latvians etc who do/did the jobs the “smart” Irish wouldn’t deign to. The old Irish double standard. Get a life. Blame yourselves and not-so-fly-in-the-end Bertie and Brian who presided over all the public sector play digouts and were in hock to their pals the developers and their greedy banker mates. Not the immigrants’ fault — the fault of the native Irish! Depressing poll results indeed but no great surprise, sadly…..meanwhile up in the wee North, the massive mediocre and unproductive public sector keeps the place afloat on London subsidies — for now only; but the DUP and SF will soon have to stop messing and pass on the big bills for water and much else. You voted in these eejits North and South. You get the politicians you deserve…..

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    hard to argue with that exile

  • Dave

    “You get the politicians you deserve…”

    That’s only true in a democracy where you vote for your government, and hence deserve it. However, we no longer live in democracy. The government that controls the area of the Irish economy that has implemented these disastrous macroeconomic and monetary policies, and which controls the primary banking regulation etc, is not unelected by the Irish people and it is not unaccountable to them for how those policies have contributed to the destruction of what was a very solid economy prior to the transfer of sovereignty. Changing the Irish government will not change the macroeconomic and monetary policies or the regulation of the financial sector because the Irish government have no control over the former and only limited control over the latter.

  • Dave

    Typo: “is not unelected by the Irish people and it is not unaccountable to them”

    Damn double negatives!

  • Mack

    Didn’t take long for the tax & spend economic genuises to come out of the woodword to teach us all about the causes of the Irish celtic Tiger growth period.

    Lads, if it were as simple as spending other people’s money Greece and Portugal would have had the same success – and socialism would work…

  • At the risk of tryig to pull this back to the points raised in the article….A related post worth reading and sharing with some of those polled I suggest:

    < http://www.ronanlyons.com/2009/11/13/a-modest-proposal-for-preventing-the-foreign-people-in-ireland-from-being-a-burden-to-the-country>

    However, we do have an issue with our perception of/attitude toward our immigrant populations and its sadly not limited to the South. It needs to be tackled:

    < http://www.shanepcarmichael.com/2009/11/embarassed-ni/>

    As for the next generation – they and we have a challenge no doubt but organisations like http://www.wiprogram.org give me cause for optimism if we can find a few decent role models for them and keep them in the game. Some of Mack’s opening suggestions on job creation are a fine and pragmatic starting point (surely better than all his harping on about who’s to blame for the mess we’re in).

  • greagoir o frainclin

    “The results of this poll aren’t surprising but certainly disappointing. While the rest of the world tolerates Paddies working in “their” countries, it transpires the Irish who remain at home want immigrants out of Ireland.”

    “How rich it is that the country which supplies the endless louts in Celtic shirts to the rest of the world, blame migrants for their own financial misgivings.”

    “In general the ‘Pope’s Children’ are a bunch of lazy, spoilt, greedy bastards. If a charismatic figure decides to start a blackshirt style movement in the Republic (like a Youth Defense without the cumbersome morality), he would do quite well.”

    “Ah, the “generous” Irish. Take all they can get off the EU for decades, then when they get rich and greedy enough complain about giving back to Brussels it and don’t want top share the wealth with the newer EU members.”

    Some folk with very, very stiff upper lips…..

    . .
    /

    appear to be very, very angry with the “Irish”.

    Their ‘insightful’ descriptions portray the “Irish” as an awful race of people.

    I guess the conquest and sublimation of Ireland and her people was an absolute failure then.

    We are still here!

    Mope and whinge all ye like about us!

    Diddly, diddly, idle, idle, diddly….ha ha ha!

  • OC

    I’m curious: where will Irish emigrants go for work?

    Surely not the USA with 10+% unemployment, and health coverage dependant on having a job?

    And what jobs are available in the West? Manufacturing? Data processing? Construction?

    I think we are facing a paradigm shift for the “working” class, much like the shift to factory work, and away from craftsmanship.

    Only this time, the lumpenproletariat, swelled with the broken lower-middle class, will number in the tens of millions instead of tens of thousands.

    Submit word = moral

  • greagoir,

    I’m Irish, I live and work in Ireland, I was lucky enough to find work in the UK and Germany during the grim ’80s and early ’90s.

    The generation that grew up since the ‘celtic tiger’ are in the main exactly as I described, selfish, greedy, uncivic minded whingers. Obviously not all but a fair proportion. Using the migrant workers as scapegoats is typical and pretty contemptable in my opnion.

    Rory

  • greagoir,

    Were you christened that name like a crooked stick?(thanks P.Kavanagh for that).

    It’s a nice brand of subtle xenophobia you peddling.

    Rory

  • greagoir o frainclin

    “It’s a nice brand of subtle xenophobia you peddlin.”

    Ruairi the Urban Underclass

    Na, it’s not me who’s sounding xenophobic. It’s you of course …. with the rest of the predictable, prejudicial, parochial, pentecostal bunch! Cranky, cantankerous and crooked …ye forever bate the good salt o’ de earth Irish folk and nation with a big throny schtick.

    For ye’s are all the same – politicians, priests, bankers, solicitors,landlords etc… – raping the good Irish folk and stealing from them their own self of being.

    Go on then, bugger off and emigrate….leave the ship…..and I’ll continue to play me fiddle and watch the embers glow.

    Diddly, diddly, idle, idle, diddly……ha ha ha!

    BTW, I have a lovely name and it’s very distinguished too.

  • greagoir o frainclin

    A lovely use alliteration too…I’m sure you agree.

  • …while Rome burns.

  • greagoir o frainclin

    Well done Sherlock….ha ha

  • OC

    When immigrant Muslims in Dublin agitate for Sharia, they’ll be Irish Republicans, no?