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"No we can't, idiot! Stop talking! "

why not?

"Public and political opinion in the UK and not just there is rather dismissive of Germany's stance."

Not a very high autority, I think.

by IM on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:05:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Because I don't think it's particularly healthy to grow a permanent underclass in society. But of course it depends on what kind of standards are applied.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:18:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
what have refugees to do with a permanent underclass? especialy with the permanent part?
by IM on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:27:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I explained it up-thread. Low paying service sector jobs are the first port of call when you don't have a job lined up beforehand. There we'll have wage deflation simply because of supply and demand. Given how our system is rather bad at advancing people beyond the class they were born into (and the upper-to-middle class will do everything to keep it that way), this creates the potential for a sizable underclass. The more the merrier. This obviously wouldn't be that big of a problem if say, 80,000 came per year. But 800,000/year for a few years lands you in trouble. Also, let's just say it: race plays a role as well, not just being from the 'wrong' class.

Sure there will be success stories. But the downtrodden will go uncounted. Inequality will increase. The End.

Schengen is toast!

by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:45:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps the increasing numbers in the underclass you mention will eventually contribute to changing the class imbalance. This is probably why Germany is so open to middle class Syrians, but afghans and pakistanis not so much.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:50:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Germany, i.e. the interior ministry, is open to Syrians because it's an active, massive warzone (everyone's a Syrian now at the border). Afghanistan and Pakistan have 'lower intensity' wars that don't engulf the whole country. Middle class or not doesn't matter when asylum requests are evaluated.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:59:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Most of the Syrians arriving now are skilled or highly skilled. Methinks you are too pessimistic.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:53:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The barriers to entry such as the language, the German fetishim for the right certificates, the long period before you're allowed to work, are there even for the highly-skilled. And we don't know that it's just an exodus of the intelligentsia. Most likely, with the high numbers, it's a representative cross section of the whole of Syria.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 05:07:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The overwhelming majority of Syrians in the interviews I read were intelligensia, unlike the Afghans and Pakistanis.

The difference between the Syrians and the Afghans shows another way: the Syrians tend to have money to spend (at Keleti some could buy their own food) and that also shows in the speed at which they arrived (one interviewed claimed less than a week, most a little under a month of which a lot was waiting), while I read several Afghans telling about superlong walks. I read of Syrians coming from refugee camps in Turkey, one abandoning an exploitative black market job in Istanbul, but most came directly from Syria (after being internally displaced or directly from home). It seems most people in the hungering refugee camps in Turkey either don't have even the level of funds those Afghans had or don't yet have the same level of desperation to walk most of the way.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 05:36:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Typically refugees need a lot of money to get that far, and they need a knowledge of other countries, and a certain adaptability that is learned by dealing with information. The uneducated don't have all that, that's why they are usually stuck very near to their old homes.
by Katrin on Wed Sep 9th, 2015 at 03:23:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Emphasis on "usually": those Afghans walking thousands of kilometres are usually uneducated.

Meanwhile, I read another interesting article (in Hungarian) that gave a new insight on why most of the current wave doesn't come from the refugee camps in Turkey, in spite of the worsening situation there. The journalists travelled around the border, interviewing dozens of refugees both in and out of the camps. All of them seem to be hoping that eventually the situation will normalise in Syria and all but one wanted to return home (some even thought going to Europe is outrageous). I am thinking (this wasn't in the article) that one reason is that the Syria they left behind was less hopeless and destroyed than the Syria left behind by those emigrating now.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Sep 10th, 2015 at 06:52:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
"The barriers to entry such as the language,"

not so hard for young people

 "the German fetishim for the right certificates,"

true.

 "the long period before you're allowed to work,"

three months?

by IM on Wed Sep 9th, 2015 at 04:02:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Most of all, I despair at the complete lack of strategy, the inability of the government to think even one step ahead. Today those jokers are congratulating themselves because they coughed up 6 billion to take care of refugees. Hannelore Kraft (SPD, prime minister of Northrhine Westphalia) says it won't nearly be enough. Next year, probably long before that, the mood will cool down rapidly. The internal EU bickering will continue while xenophobia festers. People will come down from their moral highs, look at each other, and wonder what we've bought into. Germany is not that special and enlightened. In the long term I fear a 15%-25% right wing movement settling in.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:32:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
" In the long term I fear a 15%-25% right wing movement settling in. "

Haven't heard much of the AfD recently.

by IM on Wed Sep 9th, 2015 at 04:04:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
They threw their liberal founder out and are now free to pursue a right-wing agenda. They'll probably make it into the next Bundestag at slightly above 5%. Long-term I see those tendencies growing. Not that it produces a political majority but a persistent undercurrent that produces a right-ward drift.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Wed Sep 9th, 2015 at 01:39:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed the UK is anything but a reference:

How does UK refugee commitment compare with other countries? | News | The Guardian

The UK prime minister, David Cameron, announced on Monday that Britain would take 20,000 Syrian refugees over the course of this parliament. The refugees will be relocated from the camps on the borders of Syria. Here's a look at the UK's plan in context.

...It is equivalent to 0.03% of the UK's total population, and 0.4% of Britain's migrant population.

...Munich welcomed 20,000 refugees last weekend. The German city received 13,000 refugees on Sunday alone - more than the total number of asylum seekers the UK has received so far this year.

...The differences are also clear if we look at the totals on a per capita basis. The UK received 188 asylum seekers per 1 million of its population over the first six months of this year. During the same period, and on the same basis, Sweden received 2,974, Germany 2,116 and France 485.

...There are 4 million Syrian refugees displaced in the Middle East, according to UNHCR data - more than 10 times the number in Europe.

The UK's plan to relocate 20,000 of these 4 million people means that it will be relocating 0.5% of the current total over five years.

(That about 20,000 in Munich is not entirely true BTW: it wasn't the only arrival point and the arrivals have been re-distributed across the entire country.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:43:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The UK government/public act like asshats. But it doesn't mean the assessment is completely wrong. No good deed goes unpunished. This is another issue that is accelerating the disintegration of the EU.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 04:54:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The assessment isn't based on real experience and is instead informed by four decades of tabloid scare-mongering, thus it is entirely authoritative, and the reference to the UK took away from your own argument.

I submit it is a valid point that Gabriel's declaration might boost the migration wave further, even if we might differ about the magnitude. But, more importantly, I think there are other factors which reduce its significance:

  • You are right to emphasize the role of communication in creating a snowball effect, but IMHO the strongest part is not what politicians say. In the dozens of interviews with the refugees I read, when telling about the target country, almost every single one mentioned some relative or friend who already made it there. Unlike the comments of politicians, which most of them know only in the most superficial second- third- and n-th-hand form, what personal acquaintances say is direct and detailed.
  • Meanwhile, there is another public opinion to address: the German one. Up until now, large parts were oblivious to the task of absorbing 100,000 a year, and it will be much more this year whatever Gabriel says. I think quite to the contrary of what you say, this time Gabriel was looking ahead and wanted to make a large refugee influx the new norm in people"'s minds.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 05:18:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
thus it is entirely authoritative

entirely unauthoritative.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 05:40:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sun, Daily Mail and whatnot have their part to play. But it's not like the UK (as a former colonial power and EU member) has had no experience with migration and refugees.

Regarding your first point, it's true that people tend to go where they have connections. Yet, how did the connections get there in the first place? It just tells me this mechanism will exponentiate the problems for the countries that have the lowest barriers.

I think the majority of people have caught up and know the numbers that are tossed around now. What they won't hear (or don't want to accept) is that this is the new normal for several years ahead. Most of the time nobody takes what dumbo Gabriel says seriously. Politically, there's an inevitable domestic confrontation coming towards us. I already see the rumblings in newspaper comment sections. This is bad. Those voices don't have to be the dominant voices in the general debate. Voting is a very quiet activity.

Schengen is toast!

by epochepoque on Wed Sep 9th, 2015 at 05:10:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
it's not like the UK (as a former colonial power and EU member) has had no experience with migration and refugees.

The UK certainly had an experience with third-world and post-colonial immigration on par with France or Germany, and had perhaps the biggest influx of intra-EU immigration after the eastern expansion of the EU, but the conditions are a bit different if we speak specifically about refugees.

this mechanism will exponentiate the problems for the countries that have the lowest barriers.

Isn't this a triviality? Refugees will target the lowest barriers, duh.

What they won't hear (or don't want to accept) is that this is the new normal for several years ahead.

And that's what Gabriel's declaration countered, whether he is being taken seriously or not.

I already see the rumblings in newspaper comment sections.

The rumblings in the newspaper comment sections as well as other on-line forums was quite visible and quite the topic before Hungary opened its borders, also on ET. Those voices were the dominant ones until the post-Heidenau backlash, which showed them to be a minority. It doesn't have to stay a minority (see Hungary...), but the fight is on.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Sep 10th, 2015 at 07:04:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Calais mayor 'disgusted' by UK policy on refugees | World news | The Guardian

Natacha Bouchart told parliament's home affairs select committee that David Cameron had shown contempt for the people of Calais after he said an offer of asylum for 20,000 refugees would not extend to those people who had already arrived in Europe.

"I am disgusted by that. Understand the position we've been in for the last 15 years. If he doesn't take refugees from Calais, that is proof that he is contemptuous of the population in Calais," she said.

Nearly all of the migrants gathered in her town wanted to go to the UK, Bouchart said. "They demonstrate every day outside the town hall. Every day myself and my deputies say to them ... if you want to stay in France you must claim asylum," she said.

"Less than 10% want to stay in France. All the others want to come to England and we are going round and round in a circle. Even if we opened up 50,000 places in France they would not claim asylum in France."



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue Sep 8th, 2015 at 05:23:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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