Monday, November 24, 2008

"Eek, the evil-doers are taking our voters!"

Lately I've heard several people observe, mostly with regret, that immigration critics have managed to attract the people whose opinions on immigration are not very different from many multiculturalists' opinions. That's quite true. I haven't actually made scientific polls so maybe I shouldn't make strong statements based on what I see around me, but it certainly seems like most folks, both in pro-multiculturalism and anti-multuculturalism camps, are quite OK with immigrants as long as they don't commit crimes, don't make trouble, and don't overload the welfare system unduly.

Some of them, however, consider themselves multiculturalist, and some consider themselves anti-multiculturalist. And during the last 7 years or so, I've seen lots of people, myself included, move from the multiculturalist camp to the anti-multiculturalist camp, and none move the other way. (Yeah, I am sure at least one exists somewhere, I just haven't seen him/her.) This process is happening all over the Western world, the multiculturalist politicians and worried by the rise of xenophobia, and wondering what's wrong with the people.

Just a thought: if your constituents are starting to vote for your opponents, even though their views on the actual issue haven't changed all that much, maybe it's because you and yours have failed to deliver?

We wanted the world where people of different colors, religions and cultures could come to the West more or less easily and live and work here like everyone else. I am not speaking for all the anti-multiculturalists here, but I know I did, and I've known a lot of other people who did.

What we got instead is a staggering amount of integration problems all over Europe. We've got riots in Paris suburbs, bombs in London and Madrid, Danish cartoon riots, immigrants strongly overrepresented in crime statistics in Finland and in Sweden, a murdered filmmaker and some politicians in need of bodyguards in the Netherlands, death threats towards critics of Islam and towards young women who don't want to marry men of their parents' choosing, areas abandoned by indigenous populations and chefs suing their employers for asking them to handle sausages.

Yeah, we know that the people who vote for multiculturalist politicians are pretty much like us. But "you will know them by their fruits" applies here, just like everywhere else, and the fruits are sadly obvious to quite a lot of voters.

The fact is, some immigrant groups commit more crime - especially violent crime - than others. Even in Finland the people are starting to notice it, even though the immigrant population is quite small and the groups in question are a fairly small percentage of all immigrants. Some groups are disproportionally on public assistance. Some groups are more likely to engage in terrorism than others. People are concerned about all of the above, and all they get from multiculturalist politicians is "everything is gonna be ok", "we are not gonna repeat France's (Germany's, UK's, etc.) mistakes", "we need more immigrants" and "we need to spend more money on integration" (which, when said by people professionally involved with integration, also means "we need to pay me more salary").

There is such a thing as undesirable immigrants: robbers, rapists, terrorists, young people who spend years on welfare without bothering to find a job, etc. The way I see it, there are only two ways of reducing their numbers: either reducing the admissions of the groups to which they belong, or getting rid of individuals or punishing them once they turn out to be undesirable.

I don't see the politicians doing either. You can't stop taking refugees from a particular country, because it would be discrimination. You can't limit the immigration from at-risk countries to admit only the people with higher education, because it would be depriving a needy country from its property...I mean people. You can't kick refugees off welfare after a couple of years because "it's just Not Done" and "they will become criminals anyway after that", and you can's send the criminal ones back home or back to the refugee camp because it's not safe for them, and we are deeply committed to the occupational safety of armed robbers.

There are good and bad people everywhere, of course, and even with the best policies some immigrant may turn out to be a bad person, and shit happens, but there has been just too much of the shit happening. When you have one immigrant killing his daughter for failing to marry whoever he told her to, it's just one murdering asshole who should be treated like any other murdering asshole. When we have whole communities in the UK where taxi drivers and police officers help those families catch those daughters, it's a massive failure of policy. Which, in turn, makes people think that the guilty parties, along with their counterparts in other countries, should be voted out of office.

How did most European countries come to have rules against deporting criminal refugees, even though the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees states very clearly that it is not intended to protect criminals? Whose bright idea was it to write - or sign - international treaties that prohibit returning people to a place where they can be executed, making in effect every criminal condemned or potentially condemned to death entitled to stay in, say, Norway? Whatever one's opinion on death penalty is, the refugee laws were written for the sake persecuted minorities, not for the sake of the founders of terrorist organizations. Whose fault is it that Omar Bakri Muhammed was allowed to preach terrorism in UK on taxpayers' money for 19 years? Whose idea was it to accommodate the aspects of immigrant cultures that go against our own, and who taught them to demand such accommodations?

It is a surprise that people are not very excited about humanitarian immigration when they realize that once you give a person asylum you can't kick them out even if they have been robbing people in the streets, founded terrorist organizations, or preached the destruction of the country that took them in?

Multiculturalists say "we are gonna learn from other countries' mistakes". Yes, we are, and we have, and we have started voting for the anti-multiculturalism candidates. Before the problems get out of hand, and not after.

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