* For centuries, thousands have given their lives for England, as have thousands for France, Poland, and Germany. I wonder if you could even fill a conference room in Brussels for those who would die for the European Union. You’d probably have better luck filling it with native Esperanto speakers.
* Great column. Thoughts:
1. You can’t keep the Germans down, and you can’t make them likable. (Kind of like their old ex-enemies. 😉 ) They’re too smart, too organized, too neurotic, and too arrogant as a result. The irony is they’ve managed to conquer Europe through transnationalism just after failing to do so through nationalism. Funny how that works.
2. Elite-populace conflicts have been around since civilization, things are just now slipping toward the populace and the elite is beginning to react.
* This is from the Guardian. Could someone please translate it into English:
“If David Cameron had opted for the genuine participation of citizens, he would have obtained a much clearer view of what people really wanted, a powerful list of shared priorities, an agenda for further negotiations, and created much less distrust between the masses and the ruling class. On top of that, he would have gained global admiration for daring to tackle a complex challenge by an innovative process that values people’s voices instead of counting their votes. He could have set a new standard for democracy, rather than serving as its gravedigger.”
* Translation: The job of the politician is to pretend to be pro democratic, but ignore the voters.
* The best I can tell it means that Cameron failed in telling people what they wanted rather than allowing them a direct voice, which because it yielded the “wrong” result is not democracy and indeed is the antithesis of democracy.
I don’t even think it’s sophistry – the sophist knows he’s drawing the wrong conclusion and doing it for his own purposes. This is more of an inability to reconcile a vestigial or rhetorical commitment to participatory democracy with the outcome demanded by the elite view of the “inevitable right side of history.”
The Brits who voted Leave likely saw the immigration endgame. If – as proposed generally and supported by PM Cameron – Turkey were to be admitted to the EU it could grant millions of economic migrants from MENA posing as refugees citizenship status in Turkey and then let them loose on the Continent and then into Great Britain.
In contrast, the Remain vote seems to consist of the young who have become accustomed to visa-free travel on the Continent and low cost roaming charges for their mobile phones as well as people who derive some benefit from the free flow of capital. The idea of perfunctorily acquiring a visa to travel on the Continent is apparently unbearable to the extent that avoiding the paperwork is worth an existential crisis for Britain.
* The political elites in the West appear to be blind to the great trend of the last 40+ years, and that is the disaggregation of conglomerate political organizations (breakup of: the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia). The more regulation-heavy and bloated the EU has become, the more it has become perceived as sclerotic, undemocratic, and past its prime.
Even in the business world, the old multi-product conglomerates of the 60′s-70′s broke up because they were vastly more inefficient together then the smaller single product lines were separate. You’ve also wrote about how it used to fashionable to think of trusts and monopolies as not healthy for competition. Large trusts and monopolies become more inefficient as the incentive to change spurred by competition is dampened. Same applies to the political realm.
Large, centrally-controlled multi-ethnic empires never last (graveyard: Greece, Rome, Persia, China, Austria-Hungary, Britain, and etc.), so why do the elite think that growing the EU and amassing unaccountable powers to its bureaucracy will be different? Eventually, the managing structure at the center becomes way too inefficient to handle the proliferating burden of more disparate polities (your language example, to take one instance). The management is not nearly as competent to take care of it all as they think they are. Heck, even Diocletian split Rome into the Eastern and Western Empires, with two Emperors to manage it, having realized it was too big for one god-emperor to handle.
My pet prediction is that the US will eventually suffer this fate. We’re too big to govern a continent-wide nation with so large a population with a one-size-fits-all single federal approach to every political issue. Combine that with our winner-take-all Presidential process, which increasingly disenfranchises the losing party, and we’re set up for an eventual split or some form of regional break-up. It will take time as regional politics consolidates around new political first principles, followed by a slow then increasing internal migration as people move to their preferred location, followed by agitation and pressure to leave DC behind. Already see it in small fits and starts in places like NorCal, Texas, some Western states. etc.
* Surprisingly, the biggest casualty of brexit so far has been the Labour Party, which campaigned to stay in, yet most of whose voters wanted out.
Tired old bearded loon, Jeremy Corbyn has ‘lost the confidence of the vast majority of the parliamentary party, yet still retains the support of paid up members. He refuses to go. A truly bizarre, dysfunctional crisis of a meltdown.
Where this will end no one knows.
I can’t help thinking that Labour is reaping the bad karma from millions of Britons over decades due to anger and frustration at their lunatic Economist inspired policy of massive immigration.
I’m not a superstitious man, but brexit day was marked, in London at least, by unseasonably bad weather, torrential rain, flooding and heavy thunderstorms.
The anger of the gods mirrored the anger of the English people.
“Lone wolf jihadists should target white Americans so no one mistakes their terror attacks for hate crimes unrelated to the cause of radical Islam, Al Qaeda writes in the latest edition of its online magazine.”
* Productivity is the key statistic that determines an economy’s first/third world status.
Most citizens of America and Europe intuitively grasp that if gains in productivity do not outpace population growth, then the average citizen will be poorer tomorrow than he was yesterday. This, and not jingoistic or retrograde nativism is why they oppose immigration. People also object to the loss of space due to overcrowding–an irredeemable loss that cannot be easily quantified or modeled and so is ignored.
* I do think nationalism is ultimately unavoidable and I think the nationalist reaction to globalism has been held back for quite a while, which means it is going to be dramatic when it reemerges. And the various articles by the elite lackeys (aka MSM) insisting that globalism is good for you and that cultural particularism is somehow evil are remarkably unpersuasive.
I also am not surprised that the elites and their media servants have all of a sudden decided that democracy is not all it’s cracked up to be. This is nothing new. This is how populist and fascist movements gain traction, and yet the elites still refuse to do anything for the Great Middle or to even recognize their concerns, about immigration, and about their own lives.
* I am very taken with Scott Adams’ point about sowing idea bombs so that people can be deprogrammed from progressive views by having their inner doubts repeatedly confirmed.
Merkel’s Boner was awful but useful in being so obviously wrong and destructive – few semi-serious people could, in their hearts, defend it.
The problem in much of Europe is that the press is a lickspittle thing: counter narratives are more likely to be screened off. The howl of outrage and astonishment in the German press over Brexit is extraordinary after Merkel’s B. Did none of them not see that as soon as we saw the Islamic cohorts marching into the heart of Europe something had broken, even if it was not quite clear what.
People really need to start pointing out that picking up opportunists off the coast of Africa to bring them into Europe is laughably moronic.
* Germany has been destined to be the dominant state in Europe since the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-’71. Perhaps we should’ve skipped the unpleasantness of 1914 (to say nothing of 1939!), and just embraced this reality at any earlier stage? Frau Merkel could’ve wound up as a Lutheran Deaconess, or some such relatively harmless thing.
* When the pendulum starts swinging back the other way, I hope the Jews manage to rejigger their existential rhetoric to accommodate it.
It really shouldn’t be that hard, particularly for Israelis. From its very inception, Zionism has been perfectly compatible with nationalism, socialist nationalism, religious nationalism, even racial nationalism. Zionism, in essence, is Jewish Nationalism: it is not enough to BE a Jew, we must also rule Jewish soil.
The Jews that are going face very real difficulties as the pendulum reverses direction are not Israeli Jews but galut Jews, with their cognitively dissonant “nationalism for me but not for thee”.
God bless ‘em, I hope they start modifying their rhetoric before all Holocaust sympathy runs out. I suspect it’s going to take a newer, younger generation to make the rhetorical transition. Miller, perhaps? The Abe Foxmans, I fear, are too old to moderate their thinking.
* “The Last Whites of the East End” is a wonderful and recent documentary by the BBC that looks at the racial cleansing of whites from the East End of London with remarkable sympathy.
I recommend it to get a sense of what is happening in London.
* Canadians and Americans can wander around each others’ countries without bothering with visas. Canadians don’t even need to apply for the perfunctory ESTA visa waiver that Europeans do.
In light of the current migrant situation, Britain might decide to require visas from Continentals, or Continentals might decide to require visas for Brits as an act of retaliation for daring to declare themselves independent; but it’s not a given that anything more than a passport will be required to travel between the UK and the Continent.
What Brits will, at least in theory, have to do is go through border controls and customs lines that EU citizens do not have to endure. To object to sovereignty for your own country simply because it requires you to wait in a few lines now and again is the height of spoiled entitlement and decadence.
* George Soros is one of the very few people whose native language was Esperanto (strange but true).
* There’s already a very aggressive campaign underway to de-legitimize the referendum due to the age skewer, because old people’s opinions don’t matter. I predict that, should they somehow succeed in ignoring the result they (meaning both Labour and Tory) will do everything possible to jack up immigration even more, so as to prevent this from ever happening again.
* As long as decisions are made by professional politicians, the EU has an irresistible momentum. The EU is a senior tour for politicians, quite literally a tour as they can wine and dine at meetings around the continent.
* Here’s an article that says that Trump supporters are more likely than Hillary supporters to believe that blacks are “violent”, “criminal”, and “lazy” than whites.
But, forgetting about the factual basis of any of these beliefs, the numbers are striking. Apparently about half of Trump supporters believe these scurrilous things, but about a third of Hillary’s supporters do as well.
And here’s the highly pertinent fact that doesn’t get mentioned in this account: the vast majority of blacks themselves are, of course, Hillary supporters. How many of Hillary’s supporters are black? Since 13% of the US is black, I’d guess about 25%. How many of her supporters are white? Well less than 75%, given that most Hispanics and Asians support her. So how different are the whites supporting Hillary in their attitudes from whites supporting Trump? Not much I’d guess. Or if indeed they are still pretty different, than it would have to be, say, Hispanics who have these attitudes toward blacks — which would also not be a very inspiring story.
* When respectful disagreement is outlawed only outlaws will respectfully disagree…