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Brit Lefty Lets Cat Out Of Bag On Immigration
This is an extraordinary piece: Why we on the Left made an epic mistake on immigration, London Daily Mail, March 22 2013.
The writer is David Goodhart, a goodthinkful British liberal who is a tad more open-minded than the average. An approximate U.S. equivalent would be Michael Kinsley.
The piece is Britcentric, but much of it can be carried right over into U.S. immigration issues. Here's the opening.
Among Left-leaning "Hampstead" [i.e. limousine] liberals like me, there has long been what you might call a "discrimination assumption" when it comes to the highly charged issue of immigration.
Our instinctive reaction has been that Britain is a relentlessly racist country bent on thwarting the lives of ethnic minorities, that the only decent policy is to throw open our doors to all and that those with doubts about how we run our multi-racial society are guilty of prejudice.
And that view -- echoed in Whitehall [i.e. British govt. administation], Westminster [i.e. the national legislature] and town halls around the country -- has been the prevailing ideology, setting the tone for the immigration debate.
But for some years, this has troubled me and, gradually, I have changed my mind.
Over 18 months of touring the country to talk to people about their lives for a new book, I have discovered minority Britons thriving more than many liberals suppose possible. But I also saw the mess of division and conflict we have got ourselves into in other places.
I am now convinced that public opinion is right and Britain has had too much immigration too quickly.
For 30 years, the Left has blinded itself with sentiment about diversity. But we got it wrong.
Some of the piece could have been cribbed from VDARE.com.
Those in the race lobby have been slow to recognise that strong collective identities are legitimate for majorities as well as minorities, for white as well as for black people.
For a democratic state to have any meaning, it must "belong" to existing citizens. They must have special rights over non-citizens. Immigration must be managed with their interests in mind. But it has not been.
There is even a certain amount of giving-the-game-away:
We are deep into a huge social experiment. To give it a chance of working, we need to heed the "slow down" signs that the electorate is waving. And all the more so given that the low economic growth era we are now in means people's grievances cannot easily be bought off with rising wages and public spending.
Goodhart exposes the sheer barking craziness of liberal universalist-utopian ideology:
There has been a huge gap between our ruling elite's views and those of ordinary people on the street. This was brought home to me when dining at an Oxford college and the eminent person next to me, a very senior civil servant, said: "When I was at the Treasury, I argued for the most open door possible to immigration [because] I saw it as my job to maximise global welfare not national welfare."
I was even more surprised when the notion was endorsed by another guest, one of the most powerful television executives in the country. He, too, felt global welfare was paramount and that he had a greater obligation to someone in Burundi than to someone in Birmingham.
Such grand notions run counter to the way most people in this country think or arrange their priorities.
There it is, the cat out of the bag: Our ruling classes couldn't care less about the actual people of the actual nation that pays their salaries ... Or at any rate, they believe it would be shameful to care more about us than about Burundians.
Read the whole thing, but not on a full stomach.