Mass migration is not, as it seems, an organic emanation of humanity from poor countries, but a calculated project to repopulate the territory of the declining West, with racism its chief instrument, wrote John Waters.
In a two-part series titled ‘Europe’s Death Rattle’, John Waters explores mass migration with reference to Stephen Smith’s book ‘The Scramble for Europe: Young Africa on its way to the Old Continent’.
Part I discusses – as the culmination of a long-time plan – a global calamity of food scarcity, due to Covid measures and ‘sanctions’, which will cause record numbers of mainly African migrants to enter Europe seeking food.
As Waters’ articles are longer than most would read in one sitting, we are breaking Part II, headed ‘Open Borders, Shut Mouths’, into shorter sections and publishing them as a series titled ‘The Suicide of Europe’. This article is the ninth and final in our series.
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By John Waters
In concluding his book, Stephen Smith says: ‘The massive migration of Africans to Europe is in the interest of neither Young Africa nor the Old Continent.’
For Europe, only a very selective filtering of would-be migrants will provide any benefit because of the highly competitive nature of its jobs market, which is likely to contract further as automation and especially robotics roll out. In the end, he says, somewhat optimistically, ‘the decline in its working population will almost certainly be a net gain for Europe, not a loss. Africa, on the other hand, has far more to lose than to gain from the large scale “exportation” of its youth.”
He is right: Africa needs investment, entrepreneurship, and creativity, not the continued haemorrhaging of its most vibrant young.
‘Africa’s challenge, he reiterates, ‘is not an excess of young people but a lack of adults,’ by which he means people capable of leading their fellows into a new era of African life. Similarly, Europe, which prates undergraduate pieties in the face of an impending catastrophe for both continents.
Smith describes his book as an attempt to ‘de-moralise’ the debate, i.e. remove it from the ambit of the ‘politics of pity.’ ‘While there are obviously important ethical implications, the decision for or against a migratory policy is not a choice between Good and Evil. In European democracies, it is about first deliberating and then agreeing on the rules for the admission of third-country nationals to EU territory.’
These rules, he says, ought to be in the best interests of Europeans. ‘It is a question of good governance, not of heaven or hell on earth.’
‘A border is not a barrier,’ he adds. ‘A border is a space of negotiation between neighbours, who cannot disregard the problems on the other side.’
Such an approach requires realism, not emotionalism. Africans are not a homogeneous group: they come from a vast continent with a multiplicity of tribes, cultures, traditions, norms and values — factors that, Smith stresses, ‘it is not inappropriate for their hosts to examine before extending their hospitality.’ A scattergun ‘politics of pity’ is misplaced and unhelpful. ‘In short, when trying to formulate a “good” immigration policy, irenic universalism inspired by a vague brotherhood of men is as prejudicial as nationalistic or nativist egoism, or any cult of blood and soil.’
As an alternative to the present insanity, he proposes that European countries might consider ‘new forms of ‘circulatory migration’— based on multiple-entry visas or even residence permits granted for two or three years, according to a new national quota system that makes the arrival of a new African conditional on the prior departure of a compatriot. This, he claims, ‘could harness the self-regulatory effects of the job market and . . . make the policing of migratory flows a shared responsibility between Europe and Africa. One-for-one migrant substitution — one leaves, another enters — would no longer be the defence of “Fortress Europe” but co-management of its drawbridge.’
‘If you’re a European, you decide who’s getting into your country — you can’t count without your host. Only Europeans can decide who enters Europe, but they cannot decide in a void.’
The arrival of foreigners in a society, he observes, can be destabilising. Pretending otherwise is ‘surely disingenuous.’ He cites the Algerian writer Kamel Daoud, who warned against ‘an angelic attitude that can ultimately kill.’ Neither host nor stranger is a priori good, or evil, generous or selfish. No outsider has the right to dictate to a community how it should define the commonality of its members — especially not those applying for membership. ‘One doesn’t join a club by relaxing the rules,’ Smith observes. ‘These can be renegotiated, but only after one has become a member.’
‘In any event,’ he writes, ‘except for the duty to rescue that applies to asylum seekers (and it is limited by the principle that they should not constitute a criminal threat to the community), indifference is neither wrong nor immoral.’ Freedom of association implies also the right not to associate. ‘Whatever the response, a concern for greater international equality should not be confused with a vision of open borders as the royal road to achieving that goal. It is not inconsistent to favour worldwide social justice and oppose the free movement of persons.’
About the Author
John Waters was a journalist, magazine editor and columnist specialising in raising unpopular issues of public importance. He left The Irish Times after 24 years in 2014 and drew the blinds fully on Irish journalism a year later.
Since then, his articles have appeared in publications such as First Things, frontpagemag.com, The Spectator, and The Spectator USA. He has published ten books, the latest, Give Us Back the Bad Roads (2018), being a reflection on the cultural disintegration of Ireland since 1990, in the form of a letter to his late father.
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