By Jakov Miljak
Few concepts are more integral to the flourishing of a free society than state sovereignty. Indeed, to a society that wishes to claim dominion over its cultural and social destiny, there is quite possibly nothing which should be seen to be so self-evidently true than this fact. Pausing to reflect on the history of western society, a history that has often snaked its path perilously close to submission from foreign incursions, it beggars belief to think that the ‘establishment’ political class of the modern west, particularly in Europe, has in recent times so joyfully once more come so close to the precipice.
In the visionary wisdom that only morally superior progressives are capable of displaying, the politically correct ruling class of Europe has now subjected its people to a crisis that has been caused by a commitment to a utopian ideology which is only exacerbated by the self-loathing cowardice of its proponents. Whilst this is undoubtedly the case, for the Old Continent to have reached a point in its existence where it’s cultural destiny is not decided by European citizens, but by a relentless mass of people, often masquerading as refugees, with no respect for the sovereignty, customs and values of Europe is to truly indicate a state of emergency. Indeed, the curious mind must surely note that the middle-aged European bureaucrats and the Islamic migrants from the Middle East and North Africa who have created this seismic social shift make very strange bedfellows.
The average modern westerner is now force-fed a toxic mix of non-negotiable beliefs from its political establishment. They include the importance of mass migration through porous borders, the triumph of self-righteous calls for ‘compassion’ at the expense of all reason and the cultural Marxist assumption that all cultures and migrants are equally compatible with the west. This is the sinister, calculated cocktail of ideology that the self-hating left have tried to get the masses drunk on. And curiously, up until now, it’s largely been successful. Despite the warning of many often-derided traditionalists and rationalists in the past, it is that cocktail which has been served-up by both ‘conservative’ and social democrat alike as a compulsory component of what is considered an acceptable western identity. However, whilst the mass movement of people from cultures with vastly different values systems to ours has been the source of criticism in the recent past it has only been the shock and horror of recent European events that seems to have woken up the wider citizenry to the serious threat facing Europe and the wider western world.
Indeed, 2015 may well be considered the year the masses stopped drinking the establishment Kool-Aid and understood that the European welfare state doesn’t have the limitless coffers and infinitely flexible cultural relativity required to absorb such an unprecedented wave of undocumented arrivals from the third world. Of the millions of migrants making the journey to Europe, many with the assistance of criminal enterprises, UNHCR figures note that almost three quarters of those entering Europe are males. Most are young, fit and healthy and less than half are actually from Syria. Judging by their behaviour many simply considerate it their divine right to settlement and citizenship in a modern European welfare state. Looking at the ever increasing reports of the male-dominated, virile, and aggressive columns of people violating any semblance of their host’s state sovereignty one would think that the entirely logical response from local authorities would be the enforcement of state borders. However, in the wake of the explosion of illegal arrivals to Europe the only firm resolution displayed by the political class (with a few honourable Eastern European exceptions) was the dedication to an ideologically-driven and political correct ideology at odds with every instinct the west should have developed in 2000 years of existential struggle.
When in early 2015, Islamic State made its intentions clear that they intended to use the humanitarian crisis as a way in which to bring across terrorists into mainland Europe, the establishment scoffed at the warning. Any individual who thought that this might be a pretty logical concern was dismissed as a fear mongering racist, and clearly didn’t have a big enough heart to fully take part in the progressive European utopia that was just around the corner. It was only after Paris once more witnessed bloodshed on its streets at the hands of a group which contained these very fighters IS had warned the west it would send, that many understood the very real threat that was being posed. But it seems that for some, not even the shedding of innocent blood was enough.
Even still, it is amazing how far the progressive establishment is willing to go to deny the danger that threatens Europe and the broader west. In response to reports of mass co-ordinated sexual attacks on New Year’s Eve in the German city of Cologne, involving hundreds of “refugees” from the Middle East and North Africa, the left wing mayor announced that the solution was the establishment of a code of conduct urging women to “travel in groups” and “stay an arm’s length away from strangers”. It was the ultimate statement of victim-blaming in the face of a heinous crime from a clearly defined perpetrator. It showed that in the priority battle of progressive “isms”, even feminism loses out to the cultural Marxism and rose-tinted multiculturalism decreed by the politically correct overlords who know better than the rank and file citizenry. The west, despite the constant assertions of the progressive left, does not have a rape culture, but if the example of Cologne and other European cities is to be considered, it should be careful lest it finds itself having imported one. Cologne’s police chief noted at the time that this was “a completely new dimension of crime”, and that the police did not know how to respond, which quite frankly is code for saying, ‘we don’t know how to enforce the law in a way which violates the politically acceptable narrative’. Witnesses even reported assailants taunting the police saying “you can’t touch us, Merkel invited us here”. The event concluded with 749 German women reporting attacks in one night and Cologne was just the tip of the iceberg. Following a blanket refusal to honestly report to the public, it took weeks for the media to report similar incidents in the German cities of Stuttgart and Hamburg, and in cities as far away as Kalmar, Zurich and Helsinki. But what is almost even more staggering have been some of the institutional responses seen in some parts of Europe.
In response to a surge in sexually motivated assaults in Denmark, Norway and Sweden these Nordic countries have decided that an appropriate solution would be the establishment of sex-education classes for African and Middle-Eastern migrants, where they would be instructed to respect western social norms with respect to women and taught “not to rape” – as if those are the kinds of lessons that are best reinforced via PowerPoint presentation. The average rational man would surely think that if a person needs to be taught not to violate women, then perhaps that person and their value system do not belong in the society he is migrating to. Simple. But of course, such a bold show of logic would be far too controversial for some state authorities to act on. This is seemingly because we all know it is of course far more important to not be considered racist, than it is to protect women from further outbreaks of sexual assault. Indeed, the fact that the prevalence of the most heinous crimes has not been enough to force the cultural Marxists to accept that not all migrants are perhaps compatible with western society, provides us with a sobering lesson. It teaches us that there is an establishment so ideologically motivated that it is willing to ignore riots, rapes and crime, the social and cultural damage to otherwise peaceful towns, and the safety of its own people for the sake of its agenda. We’re in the midst of progress ladies and gentlemen, and it seems no crime is big enough to slow it.
It should be noted that it is only through the fears of a seismic abandonment of the establishment, that centrist parties have been dragged kicking and screaming towards taking the most tentative steps in enforcing some semblance of state sovereignty. Following the unchecked arrival of 1.1 million mostly Islamic migrants from North Africa and the Middle East, the German Chancellor has only recently responded to polls saying that almost 80% of Germans claim she has “mishandled” the migrant crisis, with a slight shift in rhetoric. And clearly, “mishandled” is a polite term, given the example of some German regions, where in one instance a town of 102 residents was asked to accommodate 750 migrants- to use the town of Sumte in Lower Saxony as one example. In response to the outrage, Merkel has announced that migrant “criminals” would be deported, in other jurisdictions countries have re-instigated border checks, Finland has created a timetable for the deportation of failed asylum applicants and even Sweden, which once boasted about being a “humanitarian superpower” has had to admit that there is a cap to how many migrants they can absorb. Eastern Europe nations such as Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia and Poland refuse to accept resettlement quotas, fearing the growth in resentment which in some instances has resulted in outright hostility.
In many European nations, where youth unemployment rates hover between 25% and 50%, the prospect of employing tens of thousands of unskilled workers seems like an impossible task, and one which understandably threatens particularly the unskilled Europeans who now have even lower prospects of finding meaningful employment. Coupled with growing fear from the professional and middle-class that the political elites have chronically mishandled the crisis, these groups’ fears have resulted in huge increases in support for UKIP in Britain, the National Front in France, Jobbik in Hungary, the Freedom Party in the Netherlands and the Swedish Democrats in Sweden, all which have tapped into widespread voter resentment. Even in the United States almost every single Republican candidate has committed to building a wall with Mexico and clamping down on illegal immigrants. But perhaps most crucially from a conservative perspective however, these parties have forced the Overton window to shift to the right on the issue of state sovereignty and border protection. Centre Right and centrist parties realise that to nullify the threat from the “pro-state sovereignty” parties that they must for a change actually apply conservative principles to their policies. Broader cultural and social issues aside, that all begins with securing the border.
Another inevitable effect of the present situation has been the surging growth of parties traditionally derided as “far right”. But what is perhaps most often ignored in media reporting about such a phenomena, is that in some instances those parties are far from conservative or “right-wing” in the traditional sense, but are in fact defined through their “pro-state sovereignty” outlook. Some of the parties in question, such as the Freedom Party in Netherlands are unashamedly liberal in their agenda- keen to promote a socially liberal society and the prominence of welfare-state, but in doing so have understood that it is only through doubling-down on the conservative ideal of “state sovereignty” that they can ensure their goal. This approach echoes that of John Stuart Mill, who despite being one of the most influential liberal thinkers in history, sounded decidedly conservative when he recognised that “it was only within secure borders that peoples could govern themselves as free citizens”.
Now it is not this conservative author’s intention to imply that state-sovereignty should be used to protect the current liberal decay infecting the modern west, but it is his intention to at least outline the potential for common ground that could be potentially found between left and right on this issue. In fact, to extend the point, it seems that the conservative has an almost fool-proof litmus test for distinguishing between rational liberals and hysterical, emotional ones; the rational liberal will agree that the conservative principle of secure borders is necessary because it best allows him to create the kind of liberal world he thinks we are progressing towards locally. And though he is undoubtedly wrong, he is a useful idiot to any conservative keen to promote the idea that a nation should have its sovereignty. It is the hysterical liberal, the kind you’ll find on Tumblr or in Student Unions and T2 shops that believes that mass migration and cultural Marxism are a wholesome, safe mix.
“Nothing angers a free people more than the collective loss of control over their agency.”
With all this is mind, it should be noted however that not all western countries have pursued policies which secured the national border out of fear from the “pro state-sovereignty” flank. Whilst the mainstream media and political class in Europe struggle to acknowledge, let alone help deal with the unprecedented migration of undocumented third world migrants to the west– it has been Australia’s resurrection of pro state sovereignty policies by then Prime Minister Tony Abbot, which has provided the kind of example that is the envy of many in Europe.
In his recent Margaret Thatcher lecture Abbott noted that despite Christian tenets often being at the heart of western polity it was important that “wholesome instincts” were not used as they currently were in a foolish way which had lead “much of Europe into catastrophic error”. Indeed, it is precisely this ability to think rationally in the face of a challenge to his country’s sovereignty that demonstrates the kind of leadership instinct that the west needs to seek in its leaders. Instead of having Australia’s policies dictated to by people smugglers, through some ‘tough love’ on the border Australia has saved thousands of lives at sea, killed off the criminals’ business model, emptied our detention centres and ensured that any humanitarian resettlement is then done in an orderly and regulated manner.
There is no question that there are no doubt instances of genuine people in need who upon making a proper request for asylum would be granted it. But this is not a question of whether or not a humanitarian programme should exist- it is about the importance of empowering sovereign nations with the ability to make those choices without feeling as though they are morally or politically coerced into making decisions that may compromise the interest of the present citizenry. Ronald Reagan once mentioned that a “nation which cannot control its borders is not a nation”, and it is only through controlling and regulating its own border that a country can exercise the ultimate sovereignty over its own territory in deciding “who comes to this country and the manner in which they come”. This latter enunciation by none other than Liberal Party stalwart John Howard, displays the conservative, common sense approach that rewards the individuals and the nations who are brave enough to take it. His ideological successor in many ways, Tony Abbott had perhaps his greatest policy success, when he doubled down on his conservative instincts with regards to border protection – and this example should provide ample reason for our friends in Europe and America to recognise not only the political popularity but more importantly the success of such a policy move.
Nothing angers a free people more than the collective loss of control over their agency. It is only through a conservative, zero tolerance policy on the border that the citizens of the west will be able to ensure they have the ability to choose exactly how they wish to deal with their own social and cultural destiny.