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A stubborn phenomenon that PC cannot remove
09.03.2008. The following are excerpts from an article by Professor Jerry Z. Muller, Foreign Affairs, March/April 2008 (emphasis added):
Summary: Americans generally belittle the role of ethnic nationalism in politics. But in fact, it corresponds to some enduring propensities of the human spirit, it is galvanized by modernization, and in one form or another, it will drive global politics for generations to come. Once ethnic nationalism has captured the imagination of groups in a multiethnic society, ethnic disaggregation or partition is often the least bad answer.
As a result, some of the traditional contours of European politics have been upended. The left, for example, has tended to embrace immigration in the name of egalitarianism and multiculturalism. But if there is indeed a link between ethnic homogeneity and a population's willingness to support generous income-redistribution programs, the encouragement of a more heterogeneous society may end up undermining the left's broader political agenda. And some of Europe's libertarian cultural propensities have already clashed with the cultural illiberalism of some of the new immigrant communities. [...]
Contemporary social scientists who write about nationalism tend to stress the contingent elements of group identity -- the extent to which national consciousness is culturally and politically manufactured by ideologists and politicians. They regularly invoke Benedict Anderson's concept of "imagined communities," as if demonstrating that nationalism is constructed will rob the concept of its power. It is true, of course, that ethnonational identity is never as natural or ineluctable as nationalists claim. Yet it would be a mistake to think that because nationalism is partly constructed it is therefore fragile or infinitely malleable. Ethnonationalism was not a chance detour in European history: it corresponds to some enduring propensities of the human spirit that are heightened by the process of modern state creation, it is a crucial source of both solidarity and enmity, and in one form or another, it will remain for many generations to come. One can only profit from facing it directly.
HonestThinking comments: Long before the HonestThinking website was established in 2005, I have repeatedly pointed out that ethnicity is a very strong force in shaping of our loyalties and sense of belonging. For this I have received a lot of criticism, including accusations of racism. Even some who are strongly opposed to the multicultural ideology seem to think that this is the one topic that we need to avoid. I hope this article will cause some people to reconsider their position.
07.03.2008. Yesterday will go down in history as the day our politicians surrendered most of what was left of Britain's sovereignty and trusted the nation's future to a European superstate. It will also go down as one of the blackest ever for our democracy. Thus begins an article in Daily Mail.
04.03.2008. Europe is a dying continent. I say this not as a criticism, but rather as a statement of fact. In Europe, an acute failure to produce the next generation has created a looming demographic crisis. Thus begins Trevor Wagener his article in Yale Daily News.
HonestThinking comments: Europe is in dire straits, and the question mark in Wagener's header seems more or less superfluous. We are indeed endangered, although we can perhaps still hope that there is hope.
04.03.2008. Over the past two decades, Britain has been through a revolution. The extent of the change, in both scale and speed, has probably been unique in the peacetime history of our country. Globalisation, mass immigration and economic upheaval have helped to transform the fabric of our nation. Thus begins BBC Head Of Independent Commissioning For Knowledge, Richard Klein, his article in Daily Mail.
HonestThinking comments: If it were not for patronizing remarks like the following, this would have been a good article:
In the modern world's rush to embrace diversity and globalisation, we cannot afford to ignore the voices of any section of society which feels bewildered by the pace of change.
Still, Klein's piece is pretty thought provoking. See also the article White Need Not Apply, by A. Millar in The Brussels Journal.