The precious little princess

Increasingly you wake up in the morning, turn on the TV news, hold your head in your hands and cringe saying to yourself and to no one in particular and the world in general – “Oh for God’s sake.” That’s if you’re not hurling abuse and invective, which is never a good way to start the day if you want to keep your blood pressure low. But nowadays I find myself screaming abuse at the TV news and neither Kay Burley nor Nicholas Witchell are on screen at the time. And this is in the morning, Reporting Scotland doesn’t start until 6.30 pm.

Watching British news reporting and there’s one inescapable truth, GB stands for Grossly Buggered. There’s no escaping the fact that Britain is an embarrassment, the dick man of Europe, the guy that never offers to buy a round, the precious little princ ess who thinks it is special and the standards by which the rest of the world is judged do not apply to it. The rules by while the rest of the world is judged do not apply to Britain, because Britain’s special. That’s why we have telly shows like Great British Bake Off, because no other country in the world has cakes. Britain is so special that British nationalism isn’t nationalist at all. We can refuse to help the rest of the world because we need to look after our own people first, and it’s not nationalist to make your compassion and care contingent on a person’s passport as long as their passport is British.

Britain is the one who is asked to help in a humanitarian crisis but pleads that it might affect its car insurance payments. Britain is the country where the first response of the press to a humanitarian crisis washing up on the shores of the Mediterranean is to complain that British holiday makers had their holidays ruined because they were reminded that there is suffering in the world.

We’re surrounded by water and that makes us special, a barrier which means that we’re exempt from giving a toss about the refugees trekking across the continent as a result of the havoc that the West has wrought. You can walk along a Hungarian highway but Britain has no place for you, unless you’re an global finance company, a multimillionaire, an oligarch, a deposed dictator, an arms dealer, or a banker. Britain only has a place for the rich and the powerful, the people who don’t need refuge. You don’t get to be rich and powerful by being a nice person. Britain only has a place for the utter bastards of this world. Utter bastardy is what Britain expects us to aspire to. Those are British values, and they’re cringeworthy.

But our problems are nothing.

People are dying, fleeing death, escaping from oppression and slavery, risking everything and being left with nothing, and the British government refers to them as migrants who are seeking a better life – as if they were contestants on Wish You Were Here who are viewing properties in Australia and comparing the sizes of swimming pools. Back in the real world that the refugees are in, the swimming pool contains a dead body, face down.

This is one of the richest countries in the world. We have a housing crisis while thousands of properties stand empty, owned by faceless offshore companies as investment opportunities, while outside they install spikes on flat surfaces to prevent homeless people taking shelter. We have foodbanks and poverty while a small number get increasingly wealthy, and the poverty porn on Channel 5 speaks of handouts while turning a blind eye to the tax dodges, bonuses and privilege of the wealthy.

The British government is now trying to fudge the numbers, hinting that they may allow a few dozen more here, a couple of hundred more there to seek shelter in the UK. But they want it to be conditional on adding to the bombs that are already falling on Syrian cities. Kobane and Aleppo already stand in ruins, flattened and destroyed. What they really need are more bombs, British bombs. Because British bombs are virtuous and problem solving bombs. British bombs blow things up in constructive and helpful ways, unlike Syrian bombs.

Britain could easily take in 55,000 Syrian refugees. That’s the same number of people who speak Gaelic, that ‘dead language no one speaks’ according to people who care more about two Gaelic words on the side of a helicopter than they do about drowned children washed up on a Turkish beach. 55,000 is apparently an insignificant number when it comes to speakers of the Gaelic language, but unimaginably large when it comes to desperate people wanting to flee from death. Yet Britain could shelter twice as many.

Sweden, which has a population of just 8 million, has given refuge to over 40,000. Tiny Lebanon has received 1.2 million across its border with Syria. There are 1.8 million in Turkey. Germany has said that it will receive 800,000. 55,000 refugees in the UK is nothing, yet the maximum figure being bandied about by the UK government is 15,000, and even that figure is only being aired after the immense pressure of an outraged populace disgusted by how the UK is showing itself to be the Ebenezer Scrooge of international efforts. Even the Scottish government is only suggesting it would take 1000 refugees – that’s nowhere near enough.

It’s not like there is nowhere for the refugees to go. Britain could house them in the grace and favour spare bedrooms of the royal family, in the thousands of empty flats and houses owned by offshore tax dodgers, in the empty office space built by speculators. But even 55,000 is a drop plucked from an ocean. The British establishment tells us that it doesn’t want an EU wide settlement to ensure that every European country has to take its fair share of refugees because they want the EU to be a commercial organisation. The EU should only benefit big business and capital, not people.

And that’s the sentiment that also lies behind government in this country. The UK exists to service capital, and so does its people. That’s why there’s so much focus on forcing the disabled into work, because unless you’re making money for someone else you have no value or worth in Britain. That’s why we need out, in an independent Scotland we can value human life, not the money they make for big business.

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49 comments on “The precious little princess

  1. Mae Carson says:

    Nicola suggested 1000 as a starting point hopefully we will be ‘allowed’ to take many more.

  2. macart763M says:

    Did I mention some days can leave you feeling really tired and low?

    We need our government back in our own hands, nothing else will do. If someone is doing something in my name, then let it be something that will make us feel part of the global community. Let it be something we don’t have be ashamed of.

    Just for a change.

  3. Gavin C Barrie says:

    Faced with life in Bolton, Blackburn or wherever, I’d wager that many refugees will return to their home countries, be it Iraq or Syria, once it is safe to return and the UK and the USA have stopped meddling in their affairs.They are fleeing for their lives, not for better financial prospects.

    German industry will benefit from the academic skills, technical and financial of the refugees, whether they remain or return eventually to their home countries. The UK with little industry, has little to offer them other than service jobs, and likely well below their skills level.

    Look for the silver lining amidst the mayhem, and the sadness of the visual evidence of the wee boy on the beach:-

    Scotland is unable to help the refugees due to being constrained by UK governance.
    Cameron will not recover his reputation.
    The parliamentary Labour party look set to “do” Corbyn should he win the leadership election.

    UK politics being revealed for those with eyes to see, and brains to apply logic.

  4. Gordon Adam says:

    Paul, I think I’ve probably read every article you’ve written and to me, this is the best. This is also a subject which touches on another equally important issue. Scotland has plenty of room, but that ‘room’ is owned by a tiny amount of people, many of whom don’t even live here. Let’s get our land back and then we can use it for the benefit of everyone.

  5. ockletycockletywitch says:

    How I wish I had the verbal and written skills to produce a piece like this! Well said and well done, Paul! I have never been sorrier to have to admit that I am British. It is my belief that all political and national issues can and should be set aside in the face of a humanitarian crisis of this magnitutude. Grossly buggered sums us up nicely!

  6. Bill McDermott says:

    You can see the wheels of the Cabinet Office grinding here. First, the line was that they were migrants in Calais that were only after an easy time on benefits a la Channel 5 and the Daily Mail. The solution….spend millions on fences and security, but only after taking advantage of French forbearance. Then we were spending more than any other EU country on housing Syrian refugees in the camps in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon.. and that was the right thing to do. Now on seeing the good will being offered by Germany, Sweden and Austria and hearing vox pops of young Britishers saying they were ashamed of the response from Cameron and his ‘swarms of migrants’, we reluctantly mumble something about taking a ‘few thousand’ more, but heavens no, we can’t possibly divvi up the European total into manageable numbers for each country.

    The Tories have even been outdone by UKIP who early in the saga recognised the special difficulties of the Syrian Christian population and gave conditional support to fast-tracking that group.

    Cameron is said to be behind the curve throughout this saga. What is really happening is that their soundbites for the Mail and the Telegraph are coming back to bite them big time. Why continue to focus on spending money in keeping the refugees in UNCHR camps when the camps themselves are lamentably short of resources of food, clothing and education for children.

    Thinking big doesn’t come easily to this lot. In fact our Nicola shows them up for what they are – midgets.

  7. Lollysmum says:

    I like the way you go straight to the heart of the issue Paul. This is capitalism in play, Cameron doesn’t want to spend money on refugees but is more than happy to spend on bombs. Considering we already have british pilots bombing Syria, I think we’ve done enough damage there.

    He tried to get UK into Syrian bombing last year & parliament told him no. We are all going to be needed to tell him no again in no uncertain terms over the next few days.

    I am embarassed by my nationality & WM government’s avarice on behalf of those faceless corporations, seeking to strip the UK of everything it can to line their own pockets & those of the 1% The fact is people matter more than wealth & it doesn’t matter where they are from.

    We may be an island nation but that doesn’t mean that we aren’t a part of humanity & we should be playing our part to alleviate a crisis that WM had a hand in creating.

    I don’t know about anyone else but I want out of UK. It sickens me!

  8. says:

    Reblogged this on Bampots Utd.

  9. You say the words that we all want to say. I am heartsick of listening/reading about why we cannot take refugees.

    You can just imagine if, god forbid, there was a leak/explosion at Faslane and those left became refugees…

  10. Steve Asaneilean says:

    You are correct Paul – we could easily take 55,000 and, as others say, not all would chose to stay forever. Many would return if this settled down.

    I mean if any of us decided to leave a troubled Scotland would we not get back as soon as it was safe again?

    Scotland is, as I said, historically ubder-populated. With the exception of Skye the population of all of our islands is in decline and ageing to the extent there will soon not be enough younger folk to look after the older folk.

    Even Skye with its population of 10,500 used to have 40,000 people so could probably cope with a few thousand more now.

    I have a friend who provides medical care in a Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon. Lebanon has a smaller population than Scotland but has taken in 1 million Syrian refugees. Puts the gripes and moans of the UK into perspective.

  11. arthur thomson says:

    Too many people have been happy for too long to believe the myth of caring Britain. Anything good Britain has ever done has been forced upon it by circumstance or with an eye to a profit. The BBC the MSM have done a stupendous job in deceiving the UK population and perpetuating the myth. My hope in this respect is that those who are starting to question the honesty of the media will see at last that they are being lied to and will join the movement for change.

    Each time I think of this refugee crisis I think of the incredibly difficult position of the people of Greece and Italy. What on earth do think about the British stance? Frankly, the Brits should be chucked out of the EU never mind voting whether to stay in it. I am surprised at the patience of the rest of the EU. Maybe that will change one day soon.

  12. Brian Mudie says:

    Would comfortably fit into Celtic Park, or Old Trafford, or Murray field, or the Millennium Stadium, or almost twice over into Wembly.
    Does that put it into perspective…

  13. scotsgeoff says:

    Well said!

    And I see the global legacy-giving (to Blair! FFS!) Save The Children UK are looking for money now – well mine will be going to Care International instead now.

  14. pwest9 says:

    Not much more to add to this piece except to agree and to say that we really are a shitty little country. Cameron et al are showing the real face of their class and seem to be getting a free ride from our “unbiased” media.

  15. Margaret says:

    I cannot recall who I heard saying today that the refugees they would be taking from the camps would be orphaned children Considering their record in caring for children I would find that rather disturbing if there is any truth in it

  16. Tom fae Avonbridge says:

    Paul, another brilliant article. Lord Snooty and his chums make me sick with bile rising from my stomach. Two kitchens Cameron fraudulently claims to represent the UK, but the map of voters says otherwise. Get him oot to stop speaking on our behalf, or get us oot. I have nothing in common with Tory voters and how did they ever get their party of privilege into power? And as for Britain First, who are they and what stone do they hide under? The best of British is welcoming and fair to all who come near us, as are communities all over the world, irrespective of faith or creed; how the f*** have these dimwits in government got into power today?

    We’re a nation of mongrels and let’s get these mongrels in, they bleed the same as us and breathe the same air. They want the best for their families and children. Best comment of the weekend from a 13 year old Syrian…stop the war and we’ll go back, we don’t want to be in Europe!

    As I wrote, bile rises up when we gaze upon these f***wits in power, dragged slavering about the possible problems we might encounter when faced with a human tragedy.

  17. Patience is a Virtue says:

    Tha mi a’ dol leat.

  18. Andy MacNicol says:

    Brilliant , Paul. Written with anger, and passion. Britain makes a big play of the refugees of many nations it took in during WW2. They tell us of the diversity it brought to the country, enriching our culture. They make a play of the “Ugandan Asians” who came here too. The difference now is that this country has become less compassionate. Thatcher began the rot and every government since has encouraged capitalism for the masses. This brings with it the selfish nature which is becoming the norm. The culture from across the pond where the ordinary man has to sink or swim by his own efforts and nobody else’s. The “I’m all right (Union) Jack” attitude. I would be ashamed to call myself British, if I ever did.

  19. leavergirl says:

    Folks… mmm… there is something fishy about the migrant story. It’s always fun to dump on Westminster, but in this case, maybe we should dig deeper into the story itself.

  20. Migrants?!

    From my friend who works in the Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon:

    “He was brought by a group of his friends, three other men in their twenties. ‘Doctor, he has not been sleeping at all for the past 2 years. He has not been eating either. He rarely talks to anyone.’ He was a slim young man of tanned complexion and his heavy brown eyes spoke of pain and disappointment.

    I took him into the examination room and sat in front of him waiting for him to tell me his story. Kidnapped by armed troops, he was thrown into an underground pit the size of the small examination room, a 3×4 metre room with 60 other people. ‘I was electrocuted … beaten up with bladed sticks … I was electrocuted …’. Looking at his face, I could see that he lost eye contact and his eyes were fixed at an area on the floor, a blank area of cold cement. He was back into that dark pit reliving the torture experience.

    He was describing what had happened as if he was seeing it happening right now to someone he does not know anymore; a stranger or an actor in a movie. I kept looking into his eyes checking for a tear there somewhere, at his facial expressions, searching for a frown of anger, a grimace of disgust, a tinge of fear, or the drooping of sorrow.

    All that I saw was the blank face of a person whose lips seemed to be moving right then and there when his body and mind were not with us at all.

    I did not ask who kidnapped him the first time nor the second time. I did not ask if he had any family, if they were tortured as well, if they know that he had survived. I asked about his sleep instead, whether he was reliving the experience frequently, his anxiety levels, the medications he was or still is on, his cigarette consumption. I told him about PTSD and the treatment for it and I took his number for follow-up purposes.

    I really wanted to let him get the whole story out, but that transfer of pain that was draining my emotions made it unbearable. His experience got me thinking whether I should really believe in the innate goodness of mankind any longer.

    It got me thinking that as physicians, our role should be to advocate for those who are still in that dark pit; those voices that are going unheard; the individuals whose names will never be remembered; those who are dying in the silence of fear, of pain, for no valid reason at all”

  21. Eppy says:

    Was on Call Kaye this morning and found myself up against a guy called John who thought that the “migrants” were all well dresses, well fed and just having a laugh. I felt so ashamed that someone from Scotland could have so little empathy.

    I was told at the weekend that a nearby (large) estate had 100 empty properties, as it was not worth their while in terms of hassle to rent them out. Quite a lot of farms and larger houses round this (rural) area have buildings that were previously occupied by farm workers/ staff and are now lying empty. It is a disgrace.

    One final thought. Instead of any more Great British Bake offs, why don’t the BBC do programs on Syrian cookery, culture and languages, and how to make your refugee feel welcome? I won’t hold my breath.

  22. Eppy says:

    Quick further thought,

    Anyone up for standing outside some of the larger stately homes of Scotland (or elsewhere) with a poster saying, “I’ve got room for a refugee family, How many could you house here?”.
    Glamis is just down the road. Not too up with this interweb thingy but I could see it trending on twitter.

  23. tomtumilty says:

    UK governments and the media have managed to convince people here that the EU is all about being a trading group and only a trading group. In the rest of Europe they understand that there is an important social dimension that helps social cohesion and protects individual and community rights. Sad to say, Germany, in particular, over the Greek crisis, has been helping them keep up this narrative.

  24. Saor Alba says:

    Britain is not just dead. It is decomposing.!

  25. Sandra says:

    I don’t have your skills of writing Paul, I am simply a Grandmother who fears for the world her grandkids are living in, however, yesterday I penned these words from my heart and posted them on my newsfeed after hearing and reading some of the terrible comments from those willing to turn their back on those desperately needing help, in the forlorn hope it would make some people think. I am now left feeling shame for those who have none.
    Today it seems all I have read and heard is people saying we can’t afford to take in refugees. The arguments range from:
    A. They are crossing many other countries to get here just for our benefit system so they are not true refugees.
    B. No other country takes its share
    C. Only money grabbing neglectful parents would risk the life of their child by taking them from a safe home and putting them in a boat just to get to Britain for benefits.
    D. When they do get here they either take our jobs, hang around street corners intimidating passers by or commit crimes such as rape and theft.
    E. They all look young fit and healthy with their trendy clothes, mobile phones etc.
    F We have some of “our own” who are homeless through lack of sufficient houses. People eating from food banks. We have an NHS which can’t cope with numbers just now never mind taking more who don’t pay into the system, therefore ” charity begins at home”

    These are just a sample of the comments from the mouths and pens of our supposed Christian community. Occasionally some will add “of course I feel sorry for the children” as if that makes the comments acceptable.

    I know many agree with all these points so the remainder of this post will likely fall on deaf ears. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but please, for one minute, could I ask you to stop and think on this.

    According to the government Office for National Statistics, THE UK IS THE FOURTH WEALTHIEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD ( not exactly skint is it )
    This being so:
    A WHY? Do we have homeless beggars living on our streets.
    B. WHY? Do we have people relying on food banks.
    C. WHY? Do we have an NHS struggling daily with insufficient medical and nursing staff to man the wards. (50000 applying for 20000 UNI places)
    D. WHY? Do we have so many of our youngsters leaving school with little or no prospects of a decent job. Struggling if they’re lucky, on a zero hours contract on less than minimum wage due to their age.
    E. WHY? Do we have so many elderly having to choose between food and heat. Struggling in their homes with no one to care for them.
    F. WHY? Do we have vulnerable people with mental health problems roaming our streets, uncared for, with no one checking they are getting help and medication just because some non medical person decided they no longer required hospital care.

    Perhaps it’s because we have a government who talk about caring for the working man while allowing unscrupulous bankers, corporations and employers to continue unchecked. Allowing those like Ian Duncan Smith and his underlings to terrorise the sick and vulnerable with their sanctions. Using the press and media to put forward reports which suit their current agenda, filling the minds of those eager to believe what conforms to their already biased outlook. (PLEASE do some research for yourself) Those who could have done something to stop all this, chose to put them back in power.

    I know I’ll never change some peoples’ views on how they see the ‘Immigration Problem’ I simply wish they would harness some of the energy they use berating the immigrants and turn it into something positive. Stop blaming immigrants for everything you see wrong in the country and start recognising where the real blame lies. Let this government know, enough is enough. We need a more balanced fairer society instead of almost all the wealth being shared out and controlled by the few, for the few. We need to put our own house in order instead of interfering in other countries, telling them how to run their lives. Let’s remember, regardless of ethnicity, we are all human beings and deserve an equal quality of life, or, is it, that in 2015, we are still proving the truth of the 1673 quote which states “More inhumanity has been done by man himself than any other of nature’s causes”

    If this is the way we treat our fellow humans, thank God we have never found other life forms in space. I just hope my grandchildren will live their lives offering a greater kindness and more understanding to others, NOT taking their lead from the words uttered by so many today. We all share blame for the state of the world at present but with more tolerance, goodwill, and a strong determination, we can change it.
    Rant over

    • daviddynamo says:

      Exactly right Sandra, we (the UK) are a rich country, except that it doesn’t feel like it for too many people. We need to pressure the politicians to make sure our country’s wealth is used wisely and spread more evenly.
      We have plenty to help all the people already here, and also to help those who are fleeing from destruction in other countries. If politicians say otherwise and plead poverty, then they are either stupid or lying to us. Poverty of compassion is what too many have at Westminster.

    • Sandra, that was an excellent post. I have no children of my own. I decided many years ago that I wan’t going to beribg

  26. Dave Hansell says:

    Reading through the comments so far one the key themes seems to be a genuine and reasonable sense of shame at having to have hung around ones neck the albatross of British citizenship when not just the official individuals, organisations and elements which make up the British State are behaving like complete and utter wass ends towards their obligations as human beings but also a large chunk of fellow citizens. Witness the obvious troll above as one example amongst many

    In the 1950’s it was one of the Mitford sisters who came up with the notion of U and non-U. In a similar vein the essentials here can be classified in terms of arse holes and non – arse holes, or A and non-A. It is little wonder that a large proportion of the people of Scotland are of a mind not to be associated with both the official British State, British Unionist Nationalism, and that part of the populace of these Isles who slavishly, willfully, ignorantly and unthinkingly adhere and subscribe to this philistine mindset.

    One obvious response might well be to stop pussy footing around playing to the rigged rules set by that entity and it’s motley constituency of fellow travellers by waiting around for an opportune moment to have another referendum and instead go on the offensive to force the issue by a mass public rescindence of British citizenship.

    There would appear to be two obstacles to any such initiative however. In the first instance it would cost each individual a fee to the British State of (currently) £223. Although I suppose the British State would not be averse to receiving somewhere in the region of £400 + million if around 2 million Scots chose to do so. The second hurdle is more problematic in that it is not possible to rescind British Citizenship, according to information contained in the appropriate UK Government Web site, without documentary proof of citizenship of another State.

    Which, putting the fee to one side, seems to leave three possibilities. Any such initiative would have to either involve a prior mass application for citizenship of another individual State (Ireland?, Norway?, Syria?), the creation through the Scottish Parliament of a separate Scottish Citizenship, or alternatively everyone involved claiming mass refugee status, possibly through the UN?

    What does appear self evident is that whether the geographical boundaries are considered to be Scotland or those currently defined by the British State, as with anywhere else, there can be no escaping the reality of a general and broad A and non-A categorisation which crosses national, sub national, Class and party boundaries and that if the non – A’s wish to retain their sanity and maintain any semblance of the Commonwealth and it’s values then sitting around waiting for an opportune moment and playing by a set of rules set by the Arse holes is no longer a tenable option. The non A’s, whether in Scotland or the rest of these islands, need to take the initiative using a more imaginative, non assymetric, civic guerrilla type approach.

  27. leavergirl says:

    I post a mildly questioning and polite post, and get insults back. Way to go, trolls! That’s how trolls behave, so keep it up, and out yourselves some more.

    Meanwhile. Amongst people who think. Look carefully at a lot of the pictures. They don’t look like Syrians, many of them. They look like blacks from Africa, and some look like Indians and Pakistanis and Afghanis… I am not sure yet what is what, but i am hearing people say that poor Syrians are languishing in camps near Syria, that many of these refugees are not Syrian, have plenty of money, fancy gadgets, and specific plans. They are not heading to eastern Europe. They are heading to where the money and benefits are…

    Do I know this is true? No. But looking at the wave of young men with nice clothes and plenty of money to pay for smugglers to get them in… I am wondering what is going on. So should every thinking person be. It’s not only with Scotland events that the Powers that Be lie. They lie about everything else too. All I am saying… be shrewd. Don’t let them manipulate us into “the caring” and “the uncaring.” I am not saying these people should not be helped. I am saying… find out what is really going on, before calling your fellow citizens nasty names and spreading pointless divisions.

  28. Sorry leavergirl but you are buying into the Daily Mail/Farage stuff.

    Firstly they have mobile phones and nice clothes – so what?

    Prior to the civil war Syria was relatively prosperous for many of its citizens. Mobile phones are ten a penny these days. You can even buy decent one in the UK for less than £20 – hardly a king’s ransom.

    As for the clothes – maybe they are dressing in the smartest clothes they have because they want to make a good impression? Had you considered that possibility?

    Many who are fleeing Syria are professionals who are being persecuted because they are professionals.

    Did you bother to read the account I posted above? That guy was kidnapped and tortured twice before he managed to flee Syria for no other reason than he was teaching English to school children.

    Women have been stoned to death on the basis spurious allegations. Homosexual men have been thrown from the roofs of high buildings to their deaths in front of crowds forced to watch.

    Eighteen Syrian air force pilots we forced to lie down in a row on the ground before simultaneously having their heads hacked off.

    As for some being Black Africans – have you seen what has been happening in Nigeria? Do you remember that hundreds of school girls were kidnapped, raped, tortured and killed?

    And some appear to be from Pakistan or Afghanistan. Have you not read what is happening in Helmand and Peshawar? Do you not recall that 132 school children were massacred in a school there for no other reason that their fathers were in the Army?

    These people are not heading to where the money and benefits are – they are trying to reach somewhere they regard as safe.

    If it was all about money and benefits why are they not rushing to Norway or Denmark or even France?

    Why the hell would you risk your life for the UK benefits system which thinks its okay to force people off benefits only for then to die and few weeks later?

    What is happening in the Middle east and elsewhere is a catastrophe. Only the willfully ignorant could deny that it is at least in part due to Western policy in that part of the world.

    Surely the least we can do is offer something to help clear up the mess we partly created.

    Those who think we can simply bomb it all out of existence have clearly no understanding on more than one thousand years of history in that part of the world.

  29. leavergirl says:

    Steve, I am not denying any of it. The only other thing I would add to your account is that many of these young men have a lot of money on them… it costs 20,000 dollars often to pay off the smugglers, and more. These are, many of them, kids from prosperous families from all over Africa and the near and middle East who are sick and tired of living in failed states, and other messes, many of course of western doing. But flooding western Europe, how is that a solution? Well, maybe it will give them leverage to argue that westerners have to clean up their act, or else. They have a point.

    What I am hoping is that people care enough to find out what is really going on. If you really want to help someone, you gotta know what you are dealing with. If they, and later their families, are simply taken in somehow, Europe will be sitting on a bomb ready to go off. These young men are pretty pissed off, and pretty vengeful vis a vis the west, many are disrespectful toward the European culture (often for a good reason, and at other times simply because they are indoctrinated with patriarchal or Islamic entitlements) and feeling they are owed. So, what now? Are we just gonna sweep all this under the rug?

    • Dave Hansell says:

      So let’s see if I ‘ve got this right.

      Apparently we have people “heading towards where the money and benefits are” (unquote) who at the same time “have a lot of money” to the extent they can afford “20,000 dollars” for passage, again unquote.

      Are you absolutely sure you want to pursue that line of argument with its contradictions which are clear to a blind man on a galloping horse?

      As is clear, and as Steve has tried to point out, many of those who have made it out of the camps in Syria, and surrounding countries are the middle classes, professional people with high level skills and education, leaving those without resources to remain in the camps with, it has to be said, a less crowded and relatively less stressful situation. Even then, many of those in the camps are working on nothing less than slave labour rates, as the Channel 4 report is stating as I type. Many of them have been living there for between 2 and 4 years.

      Consequently, of course they are going to appear better clothed and have the necessary communications devices necessary to obtain the information needed to escape the mess our leaders and their fellow travellers have created. Of course many of those we see look young and relatively fit. They are the ones fit enough to have made it this far. What you are not seeing are those who did not make it who are likely to be the less fit, the old, the very young, and women. If I were in that position I would be doing the same and let’s be honest here so would you.

      It is also disingenuous to imply that every single one is heading for the UK. The information that this is not the case is not only available for those who can be arsed to get off their backsides and find it has also been widely broadcast and printed and the only excuse for not knowing that and continuing to peddle this bollocks is that those peddling it are actively and willingly not wanting to accept the facts that the majority end up and settle in other European and Scandinavian countries and that only a small percentage are heading for the UK.

      Trying to make out that there is a pull factor of benefits etc is deliberately and willfully totally misrepresenting the facts on the ground and the reality that it is the push factors of war, bombing and destabilisation of countries and regions of the world in which our leaders have played a significant part on our behalf. Bizarrely, listening to the news this evening the answer to this obvious exodus by our Government is to call for more bombing as cover to finish the job they started of overthrowing yet another State, Syria, as though Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya were so succesful. Proving Einstein’s observation that madness as doing the same thing over and over again in the hope of obtaining different results and outcomes.

      This will only result in further generation of refugee exodus and a reaction from those affected towards those who have created the context for this situation to occur.

      • leavergirl says:

        You are the one willfully misrepresenting what I said. I never did imply they are all heading for the UK. Of course they are not. At the moment, most are heading for Austria and Germany. And beyond.

        And of course I mentioned the destabilization factor, and how much of this is reaping what was sown (except America is not reaping, yet). So if you continue to try to turn my words into a strawman, I will stop responding. Dave.

  30. Steve Asaneilean says:

    Of course some of these people will be “bad people”. Some will have criminal records or tendancies; some will committed human rights abuse.

    But such people will be a tiny fraction of those fleeing.

    In any case we have police and security services who are pretty good at their jobs.

    A three year old child is not going to grow up as a ready made crook or terrorist.

    The way some potray these refugees makes them sound like holiday makers travelling First Class instead of the reality of hundreds drowning in the Med

    • daviddynamo says:

      Leavergirl and everyone else, if you are worried about “bad people” with criminal records then you should be worried about those British citizens who are already here, specifically the MPs in the Houses of Parliament. Bribery, corruption, sex scandals, violence – it’s all been done by MPs.

  31. leavergirl says:

    I don’t necessarily agree with Kunstler on a number of things, but this post pretty much sums up some very uncomfortable truths for all of us to heed, and especially current Europeans.

  32. I know who the real enemy is…

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