Barbarians at the gates
Nicolas Sarkozy entered the political fray ahead of European elections today, describing current EU immigration policies as “an abject failure” and calling for the bloc’s visa-free Schengen area to be rewritten.
Angling for re-election in 2017,[Didact: Dear Lord, not again... the only good thing about the Sarkozy regime was his current wife, and she's showing her age now] the former centre-Right French president called for the creation of a Franco-German economic bloc at the heart of the eurozone, in an opinion piece in Le Point magazine .
With the far-Right Front National polled to pip Mr Sarkozy’s crisis-wracked UMP to the post in Sunday’s EU elections in France, the ex-president said: "Schengen I must be immediately suspended and be replaced by a Schengen II of which member countries can only be a part if they previously agree to the same immigration policy.”
Europe migration policy has failed and the need to replace Schengen I has become obvious, he added, as the current system allows immigrants who enter it to “choose the (European) country with the most generous welfare system”.
"Europe is not meant to organise social and migratory dumping, almost systematically at the expense of France," he warned.
Designed to foster the free movement of people and goods, the Schengen area comprises 26 European countries that have abolished passport or any other type of border control in-between their common borders.
Non-EU countries like Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland are part of the area, but EU members Britain, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland and Romania are not.
Without mentioning by name his Socialist French presidential successor, François Hollande, Mr Sarkozy nevertheless decried an “absence of leadership (that) is placing Europe in danger, as it is without vision, direction or priorities”.
He also called for half of the competences of Brussels to be returned to national governments. The European Commission, meanwhile, should be stripped of all legislative powers – the sole preserve of the EU parliament.
However, he warned against the rise of populist anti-EU sentiment, saying the bloc protects its citizens from the "ideological veering off course of governments and majority parties.
"If the European Union broke up centuries-old hatred and conflicts of interest would resurface more violently." [Didact: Ironically, the EU is making the resurgence of such conflicts more likely, not less so.]
"We must correct its excesses but as a project it must be preserved."
A "large, coherent and stable" Franco-German economic bloc at the heart of the eurozone would allow France "to better defend (its) interests in the face of German competition by doing away with fiscal and social disadvantages", he added. [Didact: To translate this accurately from the original Froggish, this simply means that the Germans should continue voluntarily subsidising their economically moribund Western neighbours and crippling themselves.]
As Vox, and I, and many others like us, have repeatedly pointed out, unlimited immigration is absolutely incompatible with a generous welfare state. The European dream of a generous, cradle-to-grave welfare state is collapsing because the economic engines needed to sustain that dream have died out or are dying now. The Europeans were able to get away with creating a massive entitlement state simply because America subsidised their national defence to the point that they didn't need to spend anything like 3-5% of GDP on defending themselves; instead, they could spend that money on free education, jobless benefits, subsidised or free health care, and all of the other trappings of a welfare state. This was supported by a regime of very high income, and in some cases corporate, taxes; however, economic activity overall was left relatively unmolested, at least in the case of the Nordic nations. (Yes, I know, the Frogs are a different story entirely.)
Now, there is nothing inherently wrong with such a setup- provided that there exists a social contract between the state and its citizens. In exchange for such benefits, citizens of the state are willing to pay those taxes, support the government, and be part of the culture that created those benefits in the first place.
Which brings us to the great problem with importing immigrants: they don't think, act, or move like the locals.
Is it any great surprise, then, that the welfare state is simply not going to be compatible with immigrants who don't share the values of the culture that created that state?
In the case of Islamic immigrants in particular, state-granted welfare is simply seen, under the warped and twisted ideology that is Islam, as jizyah- rightful tribute from the inferior dhimmi to the superior Muslim. Why on Earth would any rational government want to bring in tens of thousands of immigrants from such nations to live in their countries?
And in the case of the Eastern European nations that are causing the Schengen visa system to fall apart so dramatically, well, it's even simpler. If you have a choice between living in Country A, where job prospects are bleak, incomes are low, corruption is rife, and you're basically left to fend for yourself, or living in Country B, where incomes are high, law and order exists, and a generous web of benefits and grants allows you to live in relative comfort without doing very much to earn it, which one are you going to choose? Especially if there is no penalty or hassle whatsoever involved in moving from one to the other?
Evidently, such simple, logical thought patterns are impossible for government bureaucrats to follow, up until the point where the strains on the system simply become too obvious to ignore any longer.