Howard Epstein

HOWARD EPSTEIN: LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE MIGRANTS

HOWARD EPSTEIN: LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE MIGRANTS

 

Human Rights and US Visa Entry

Human Rights and US Visa Entry

It seems that only Donald Trump and I can see straight where migration is concerned. OK, I accept that Angela Merkel is catching up fast now, having realised (belatedly) that the expected arrival of almost a million Syrian dentists turned out to be less than the unalloyed success for which she had hoped – it seems that not all of them were in fact dentists and a fair few (having what are perceived as Da’esh inclinations) are regarded as somewhat less savoury to the Teutonic palate than a plate of sauerkraut.

Nevertheless, what with the Chief Rabbi of Great Britain and the Commonwealth, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, J-Street, Jon Stewart and everyone to the left of Genghis Khan incapable of seeing that “Trump” does not equate with “Hitler”, nor the Republicans with the Nazis, it does feel lonely on the planet of sobriety and reason.

 

 

I know that it is early for a gift for Pesach but if I were asked what I wish for, it would be that the knee-jerk reaction to everything that the President does cease to be to demonize him. As is clear from the collapse of the “opposition” Labour Party in the UK, a successful democracy – make that a true democracy – requires two electable parties, a clean-sweep occasionally and a healthy debate about matters – not the sanctimonious Democratic hysteria at maximum volume all the time. That is not democratic and renders the hysterical less fit to claim the right to govern with every shriek.

In any event, unfettered entry to the USA was not, last time I checked, on the list of fundamental human rights and (here is a reality check for you) Trump got the list of countries singled out for special – but temporary – treatment from the playbook of none other than the pin-up of the politically dissolute, licentious and dissipated Left, Barak Hussein Obama himself.

 

 

 

 

Obama’s Legacy

You will recall that Obama was concerned about his legacy. He need have no fear. He will for long be remembered for the bullying tactic of kicking out at Israel with UNSC Resolution 2334 (as cowardly as his drone-inflicted extra-judicial killings that went on for the bulk of the eight thin years). He will not be overlooked, either, in the snake-in-the-grass stakes over his parting shot at Israel when he signed – in the 59th minute of the eleventh hour of the last morning of his presidency – a cheque for $221 million for the Palestinian Authority. And when the Winston Smith Literary Prize 2017 is bestowed, it will justly go to him for rewriting the English language (as only he and George Orwell’s character in “1984” could do) with his “My Own Politically-Correct Lexicon”. This magnificent tome excised the reality out of every story revealing or critical of Muslim and Arab activity less wholesome than, shall we say, jogging – like several Jihadist attacks on American soil verbally dressed up by Obama-speak to look like anything but. At last all that is changing, so the news from the White House is not all bad.

 

Good Fences Make Good Neighbours

Prime Minister Netanyahu, whose departure from that post I urge after ten years, manifesting as much hubris as (were it a shade of gun-metal grey) you could paint five supernumerary

submarines with, was castigated for congratulating Trump on building a wall to keep illegal migrants out of the USA and firmly on the Mexican side of the border. The sub-plot that was lost in the hullaballoo that followed is this: Israel built a wall – or fence – to keep terrorists outside the Green Line (and it has largely done its job) and was roundly criticized for it by the USA and Europe. (“A Wall! How 1960s Berlin” – except that ours was not to stop our citizens from escaping life here).

Then Schengen went the way of European misplaced idealism, and razor-wire became oh-so-this-season, plus the threat of right-wing governments all over Europe are suddenly rearing their heads (if not this election season then soon).

Now the Yanks have their very own wall and Israel is no longer an isolated example of the old adage: Good fences Make Good Neighbours (pace Robert Frost).

 

Greatest Threat to World Peace?

It seems an age since Israel was considered the Greatest Threat to World Peace, for it is hard now even for Jeremy Corbyn or Keith Ellison to trot that one out after some five hundred thousand men, women and children have been brutally killed in what used to be Syria. On the other hand, we are still not getting all the accolades to which we are entitled when the BBC can proclaim a breakthrough in prostate cancer treatment for a whole morning’s broadcasting, yet fail to mention once, until the program’s end, its Israeli provenance. So we do not feel totally disorientated.

Statistics Again

If you have been reading these columns, you will have seen me write of the strength of the Israeli economy. Things just got better. Our foreign reserves have, after further substantial purchases of the greenback, just passed $100 billion for the first time, truly a milestone. How else can the value of the shekel be held down to levels our exporters can live with?

Now that we are into statistics again – and you can check to see whether what I write are post-truth, half-truths, alternative facts, the ravings of a conspiracy theorist, lies, damn lies – or just plain accurate. In order to survive (yes, as in continue to be), a nation needs “replacement level fertility”, usually taken to be 2.1 children per woman for most countries, although it may vary a little with mortality rates.

Fertility Issues

A reliable source of such information may be considered the CIA’s statistics at:-

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2127rank.html

which uses Total Fertility Rate (or TFR, “a more direct measure of the level of fertility than the crude birth rate, since it refers to births per woman”), so the following should be seen in comparative terms. The first 72 countries on the CIA TFR table are as follows:-

Niger, Burundi, Mali, Somalia, Uganda, Burkina Faso, Zambia, Malawi, Angola, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Mozambique, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Timor-Leste, Benin, Tanzania, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, Congo, Liberia, , Equatorial Guinea, Rwanda, Chad, Togo, Gabon, Sao Tome And Principe, Senegal, Central African Republic, Gaza Strip, Guinea-Bissau, Madagascar, Eritrea, Iraq, Ghana, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Yemen, Sudan, Gambia, The, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Comoros, Cote D’ivoire, Namibia, West Bank, Solomon Islands, Jordan, Tonga, Vanuatu, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Marshall Islands, Philippines, Tuvalu, Belize, American Samoa, Nauru, Oman, Guatemala, Haiti, Samoa, Laos, Swaziland, Algeria, Honduras, Bolivia, Lesotho, Pakistan, Tajikistan,

whose respective TFRs range from 6.62 down to 2.67.

Do you see anything there that you could regard as a peer (ie culturally-similar) nation to those in Europe, the USA, the UK, Australasia, Japan, Russia or Israel? Of course not but, in 73rd place, is Israel with a TFR of 2.66.

After Israel come the following 33 states:-

Kyrgyzstan, Cambodia, Syria, Malaysia, India, Micronesia, Federated States Of, Kuwait, Fiji, Kiribati, Faroe Islands, Venezuela, Djibouti, United Arab Emirates, Panama, Guam, South Africa, Dominican Republic, Botswana, Kazakhstan, Argentina, Cabo Verde, Mexico, Ecuador, Cook Islands, Bangladesh, Nepal, Peru, Burma, Indonesia, Mongolia, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Turkmenistan,

also not readily-identifiable of the First or New World, whose respective TFRs range from 2.64 down to 2.08.

It is not until you get to the 108 spot that you see France at TFR 2.07.

If you plumb down into the depths of the list you will see at the 139 position the United Kingdom with a TFR of 1.89. Then:-

Sweden; the United States, Norway, Belgium, Netherlands, Australia, Finland, Denmark, Russia, Canada, Estonia, Lithuania, Switzerland, Portugal, Latvia, Spain, Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, Hungary, Serbia, Italy, Greece, Japan and Slovakia

trail behind with TFRs of 1.88 to 1.40.

The End is Nigh

What on earth, you ask, is all this about? It is about the end of western civilization, for all the states culturally-similar to our own, all our peer nations, have (in simple terms) birth rates at levels incapable of self-sustenance. It is estimated that Russia and Japan will cease to exist within fifty years, collapsing under the weight of a fast-ageing population with insufficient younger citizens to fund the state, its welfare costs and pensions obligations.

Whereas France and the UK appear to be in reasonably healthy positions, it is worth noting that the most popular name for a new-born boy in Britain is, and has for some years been, Mohammed (in its several available spellings). With its vastly larger Muslim population in absolute and relative terms, France is likely to be hiding, in its TFR statistic, an ethnic time-bomb. The same applies to the rest of the EU. Result: over the next half generation, not least by reason of continued immigration from the middle-east and Africa, expect further European submissions to a Sharia way of life – or right-wing governments seeking to reverse the trend. So this migrant thing, over which Trump hung up (or more likely slammed down) the telephone on the Australian prime minister last week (the Aussies keep their migrants off-shore, in Papua New Guinea) is not going away any time soon.

(None of this will help half a million French Jews sleep better at night. But there is always Ra’anana or Ir Yamim – or the WF21CC (see below).)

All this will be exacerbated by the fact that most of the populations of the first 100 countries on the CIA list would up-sticks and go to Europe or the USA if they could, and many will. (For some reason I have not yet been able to fathom, whilst it sounds, from all the noise, like it is a crime against humanity for Trump to close the door on a handful of failed, or failing, states for a few months, I do not read that Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, Indonesia or Russia (the biggest country on earth by far with seven time zones) or, indeed, other country has said:-

Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

as Liberty’s statue proclaims close to Ellis Island, the ocean gateway to New York and Continental America. Indeed, if there were a re-run of the Évian Conference today, there would be now as many nations volunteering to take the Arab and African migrants as there were prepared to welcome Jews in 1938. (How many? Just two: the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica.)

Nor does anyone on the Left suggest that, other than America, there are countries that should open their doors to thousands of migrants. Is that weird or what?

So far as Israel is concerned, we need to recognize that, whilst (forgive the term) mainstream Israeli mothers are more fecund that the average western mother, much of the elevated Israeli TFR figure is attributable to the Haredi and Arab sectors, although the latter is less productive year-on-year. They are also showing signs of increasing absorption into “mainstream” Israeli life – as are the Haredim.

There are clear lessons in this for Israel: urge the absorption into Israeli life of the sectors on the fringes and encourage large families particularly in the center. One way to do this is to ensure a steady stream of released building land and other policies to make homes for families increasingly affordable. Another would be to develop the WF21CC (the World’s First 21st Century City) in the Negev, of which I have been writing all this year and to which I shall return next week.

 

 

© Howard Epstein – February 2017

Howard Epstein is a political commentator and the author of Guns, Traumas and Exceptionalism: America in the Twenty-First Century, published by Amazon and on Kindle. He writes:-

There is no need for me to tell you that the scourge of gun crime is perhaps the most pressing issue in the USA. My book takes a new approach – support failing gun control by viewing gun crime through the prism of gun culture.

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