Europe’s Future: Riots

A quote from Theodore Dalrymple in The American Conservative, 23 March 2009

But it is in Britain that the potential for violent social unrest is the greatest, for thanks to the corrupt improvidence of prime ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, Britain is not only the hardest hit of any of the major European countries by the crisis, but its social conditions are the worst. If the government had actually wanted social unrest and violence in the event of a severe economic downturn, it could hardly have arranged things better.

During all the years of so-called growth—a mirage, of course, based on easy credit, asset value inflation, and indebtedness both public and private—from 1997 to 2007, both the proportion, and latterly the absolute numbers, of British-born adults in work declined, while the numbers of immigrant workers increased. In the last ten years, almost all new employment, at least 40 percent of it in the public sector, has been taken by immigrants, while the number of native-born unemployed in receipt of permanent social-security benefits of one kind or another has remained constant. They have simply been transferred from the list of unemployed to the list of sick, in order to substantiate the government’s bogus claim to have reduced unemployment. In the process, the government has succeeded, in times of supposedly unprecedented prosperity, in producing 30 percent more invalids in contemporary Britain than the total of men wounded in World War I (many of whom recovered, unlike modern British invalids wounded by the welfare state).

At least 80 percent of the immigrants came from outside the European Union and, having been granted indefinite leave to stay, have created huge obligations upon the government toward them in the event of their unemployment, since they are most unlikely ever to return whence they came. As the tax base declines, so the expenditure obligations increase.