The Immigrant economy and the end of Europe
Germany is leading the way in attempting to flood the EU with poverty stricken immigrants to compensate for economic failure. Don't blame those immigrants, but do blame the blinkered, politically correct politicians destroying Europe
Germany’s Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble (Germany’s answer to Ken Clarke?) claims Germany -- and by implication the rest of Europe, including Britain -- needs more immigrants.
It’s hard to believe that apparently intelligent politicians continue to try and make an economic case for immigration when all the evidence is strongly against it.
It’s hard to believe, but let’s have a look at what that evidence is and just what exactly are Herr Schaeuble’s arguments for more immigration to Germany and the rest of the EU.
Herr Schaeuble says: “Just as we used millions of refugees and expellees after World War Two to rebuild, so we need immigration today.”
Got that? Post-war, starving Germany, with virtually no mechanical power and dependent on human labour, used starving refugees and its own Trummerfrauen -- destitute female hod carriers -- to build the German economy.
And that’s why today, after over sixty years of affluence and being one of the most technically advanced countries on the planet, Germany, according to Herr Schaeuble, still needs more starving refugee immigrants.
I suppose it’s to be applauded when a politician speaks the blunt truth. At least Herr Schaeuble’s call to base the German and EU economies on cheap refugee labour is entirely up front and honest.
But is Herr Schaeuble honest enough to admit that competition with refugees will reduce the German and EU workers’ wages to refugee levels, perhaps even to the level of female Third World hod carriers?
Is Herr Schaeuble honest enough to admit that Third World immigrants and Third World wages mean a Third World culture, already to be seen in areas of west London with thousands of immigrants living in illegally converted garages, making Southall look like shanty town Bombay in the film Slumdog Millionaire?
Uncontrolled, unskilled Third World immigration is the economics of the madhouse, yet respectable politicians like Herr Schaeuble in Germany support it and, until recently, virtually the whole British political establishment were gung-ho for it, and still would be were it not for Nigel Farage.
Marx, who was wrong on most things, understood more than most the anarchic, socially destructive effects of money-grubbing unrestricted labour and capital markets that have no respect for national values and tradition. With unrestricted immigration in particular, cohesive social communities, both middle class and working class, lose their social capital and are eventually fragmented and destroyed.
It is precisely the damage done to living standards and to community life by years of unrestricted immigration that has prompted the recent anti-immigrant demonstrations in Germany.
Ordinary people know and understand something that pro-immigration economists and politicians are ignorant of or simply ignore: uncontrolled immigration does not improve per capita income, or in plain man’s language, immigration does not make ordinary people financially or culturally better off.
In fact it makes them worse off. With cheap immigrant labour, profits are privatised while costs are socialised. Cheap immigrant labour might boost the profits of low wage employers, but in a welfare state the tax payer foots the immigrant bill while watching his local community become a foreign country.
The truth is that, in the modern world, an immigrant economy is an economy that has failed to invest in its own people. Instead of investment in skills and long-term real-economy jobs, a policy of cheap immigrant labour is pursued while large sections of the native workforce are fobbed-off with welfarism and deferred-adulthood “educational” courses that do nothing educational, but make politicians look good by keeping “students” off the unemployment register.
Ordinary people, whether in Britain, France or Germany, can see the problems every day of their lives because they have to live with the consequences of uncontrolled immigration. They understand that immigration as a solution to economic problems is a socially destructive and impoverishing business model.
For example, the German magazine Spiegel On Line reported a study of Germany’s main non-European immigrant group, the Turks. The study found they were very badly integrated into German society (no surprise there) and estimated that failed immigration costs the German tax payer $20 billion per year.
Even in Canada, a country that for decades has practised a highly selective immigration policy, a University of Montreal 2002 study of several economies found that immigration had no statistically significant impact on per capita income. Yet this failed, unrestricted immigrant business model is what the German Finance Minister Herr Schaeuble is pushing on Europe.
Right-wing fast-buck free marketeers and virtually the whole of the political Left agree on one thing: endless, uncontrolled immigration. Both are wrong.
The Left have always supported any policy that damaged Western culture and institutions because, as Orwell put it, they are a “deracinated” lot. But now the Left have joined the fast-buck Right by claiming an economic justification for uncontrolled immigration.
For the Left, Europe needs unlimited immigration to support a non-replacement birth rate and a greying western population. Again, it’s a business model just as insane as the fast-buck free market model. And it’s insane for two reasons.
First, a study by Gerhard Heilig, former Chief of the Population Estimates and Projections Section at the UN, has dismissed as mind-boggling and absurd the notion that immigration could solve Europe’s demographic problems.
Germany, for example, over the next 90 years would need to increase its current population from 82 million to 490 million by bringing in 261 million immigrants, simply to maintain the current old-age dependency ratio.
It’s obvious to any sane person that such a policy would be economically catastrophic and self defeating because immigrants, amazingly, also grow old and become dependent on the state. What then, import another 261 million?
It would also, of course, be cultural suicide, as most of the immigrants would have to be non-Europeans. Is that what the Herr Schaeubles and Ken Clarkes of this world want?
But the second reason immigration as an economic solution does not work is that many immigrants, as the study of Turks in Germany shows, can be a major burden on the welfare state, not a support to it. Turkish immigrants in Germany, for example, have three times the rate of welfare dependency as ethnic Germans.
To say that is not to blame the immigrants. They come to Europe not to help Europeans, but to help themselves. They are rational people, and just like Europeans, they (particularly the unskilled) quickly figure out the welfare survival map. And who can blame them?
The anti-immigration demonstrations in Germany by Pegida (Patriotic Europeans against the Islamisation of the West) are attracting large numbers and seem set to grow, regardless of what you may think of them. They are unlikely to be convinced by Herr Schaeuble’s insane economic policies.
Vincent Cooper is a regular contributor to The Commentator
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