Je Suis Charlie-1What on earth has happened in France this week?  One of the biggest issues faced by my children’s generation is this.  How do the European political elites intend to govern our societies such that they balance having an enemy within with (to quote the British Labour Party) “rubbing [our] noses in diversity”?  How do we deal with politically motivated social engineering which involves accommodating Fifth Columnists?  This isn’t about racism or religionism or any other -ism.  It’s about what constitutes democracy and sound national governance.  The British political class asserts that we need multiculturalism – at virtually all and any cost – to lead more enriched, peaceful and prosperous lives.  That may or may not be true.  This week perhaps the French people have been paying the price of European political elitism – an element of which involves evaporating national borders and facilitating the free movement of peoples.  I believe that within Europe, France has the highest proportion of Muslims within its society – admittedly for historic reasons more than anything to do with latter-day European Union policies.  Nonetheless, does this mean that, consequently, France was more likely than any other European nation to have its citizens slaughtered by Islamic Fundamentalists this week? Were the French people asked and did they vote consciously for this ongoing societal arrangement? Honestly, I don’t know …


The question is to what extent can/should societies strive to control the migration of peoples? Humans (indeed all species) have migrated about the earth since time immemorial.  I don’t think we can or should seek to prevent migration per se; that would be virtually impossible.  However, I do feel that in a democracy there should be meaningful and transparent debate about who should and should not be permitted to join that society, and on what terms.  It is this disconnect between stakeholding citizens – who may not desire a rapid and unsettling social engineering of their communities – and political elites – who seem increasingly minded to facilitate and impose migration on to societies for reasons which are unclear, or at least are not argued clearly – that so baffles and bothers me …

For example, here is an interesting analysis of how well or not we in the West have handled the migration and integration of people of the Muslim faith into our communities and culture …

‘We have been too tolerant of intolerance.  We must wake up’ |



  1. It was interesting to see the outpouring of support for “je suis Charlie” and the right of free speech – especially by the press – and yet today (27th Jan) I have just read an article in the Daily Telegraph listing 9 words that the author clearly would like to see banned from the English language – because many people find them insulting and therefore they are not acceptable.


    1. moraymint · ·

      I saw that article Trevor. I assumed the author was taking the p**s?


      1. I would hope so – but there is a lot of hypocrisy around. What’s the betting that if you were to walk through Trafalgar Square with a blown up copy of one of the Charlie Hebdo cartoons you would be arrested?


  2. Interesting analysis, I’m done with analysis though. I do have some sympathies with the Muslims though, we shouldn’t be in their countries, we should just defend our own borders.

    However, the bottom line for me at least, is that we’re dealing with people that would love to (and have done) bring down a passenger plane, possibly killing my family and friends. Under those circumstances, I don’t give a damn about the ‘rights and wrongs’ of a situation, I’ll quite happily kill anybody that I consider a threat to those people.

    Family, friends, countrymen, in that order, I’ll leave the rest for someone else to ponder on.


  3. Almost everyone is wearing Je Suis Charlie at the moment, but one of the acid tests will be whether anyone will be willing (or allowed) to publish cartoons of the same sort. Time will tell, but I’m not even sure that publishing such material is legal in the UK, certainly not based on new laws coming in (and which will also prohibit the criticism of national institutions).

    Christians and Jews have long learned that, whilst they are free to follow their beliefs, they cannot expect to have the field to themselves, but must put up with critics (n.b. “Life of Brian”). It took Christians a long time to learn this – they were still murdering dissenters (“heretics”) 1600 years after the birth of Christ. Now Muslims need to learn that they, too, are entitled to religious freedom, but have to live with others’ freedom of expression.

    The future publication of Charlie-type cartoons will tell us two things. One: dare we still publish such things? (if not, the terrorists have won). Second, can the vast majority of decent Muslims accept that their freedom of religion needs to exist in parallel with others’ freedom of expression?

    The British route seems based on banning anything that anyone finds offensive. This is profoundly mistaken, because freedom of speech is meaningless unless it includes freedom to offend.


    1. moraymint · ·

      Yes, Tim, it’s this principle of ‘freedom to offend’ which is at the crux of the matter. For as long as we have apologists amongst our political class who argue for not offending others then we jeopardise freedom of speech. For me, right now, the jury’s out on the backbone of our political class …


  4. Hi Moraymint,
    Let’s not forget the utter hypocrisy of Barack ” the future does not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam” Obama signing the book of condolences.
    Nor for that matter Boris Johnson’s latest sanctimonious,disingenuous piffle where he says his”hero” is a Muslim mayor who said to would-be jihadis
    “if you don’t like freedom, then f— off”
    but calls any European saying exactly the same thing,”anti-Muslim”.
    His piece deconstructed in more detail at link below,for of course it doesn’t allow comments


    1. moraymint · ·

      The Western world’s political class is all over the place on this issue. As a cohort they haven’t the faintest idea how to handle what is rapidly turning in to an outright clash of civilisations. Well, perhaps better coined as a clash between civilisation and the religion of Islam. We’ve spent a generation or more tolerating the intolerance that is Islam – and we’re now about to spend a generation paying the price for that folly.


  5. DeeDee99 · ·

    The problem is not multi-ethnicity; it’s multiculturalism.

    There is no reason why peoples of different ethnic origin shouldn’t live together peacefully and happily providing they all subscribe to the same “rules” of conduct.

    The rules of conduct break down into two parts: culture (ie behaviours) and law.

    Over the centuries, western societies developed a Christianity-based culture and laws which protect the rights of minorities; protect free speech; allow the right to offend and be offended; enshrine equality before the law etc.

    These concepts are all alien to many ethnic groups and in particular are alien to Muslims. They simply do not understand or agree with the culture or the law they are living within. Even most moderate Muslims do not accept equality before the law or the protection of minorities or free speech.

    Importing minorities who have no understanding of western culture and law, and then allowing them to set up enclaves where they were able to continue practicing their own culture and laws many of which directly conflict with those of the host country, was never going to result in peaceful co-existence.

    Multiculturalism has failed and our “leaders” are starting to make very tentative steps towards acknowledging this. Hence the calls for defining “Britishness” etc.

    We need to “withdraw permission” for ethnic minorities to practice their own culture and laws – that doesn’t mean they can’t practice their own religion or celebrate their festivals – it does mean that aspects of their culture which conflict DIRECTLY with western culture and laws must be proscribed and dealt with very severely indeed. We have been taking a softly, softly approach to FGM, honour killings, forced marriages, Arabic dress, grooming/gang rape; electoral corruption etc and that has to stop. The gloves have to come off. They must be made to conform to western cultural norms.

    This will be a long-term project and we should start by withdrawing state funding for faith schools. If parents want their children indoctrinated into their faith, they should pay for it themselves.

    Will our politicians do it? No. They haven’t the courage or the determination to do it. I therefore think ethnic tensions will grow and, eventually, we will have a series of “Northern Irelands” playing out across Europe.


    1. moraymint · ·

      Some good stuff in the there DeeDee. My issue is not with people of different races, colours or creeds, of course. My concerns are focused on politicians charged with societal governance, law-making, national security, protecting the national interest and so on. My observation is that over the past, say, generation (30 – 50 years) our political class appear to have abrogated their responsibility as custodians of our way of life. I’m not advocating freezing our society in aspic; that would be daft, detrimental and indeed impossible. However, I do feel that somehow we’ve thrown the baby out with the bath water when it comes to migration controls (or, rather, the delegation of those non-existent controls to unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats effectively ruling us from a foreign country), the disastrous cultivation of ‘multiculturalism’ (often involving indigenous citizens kowtowing to cultures inimical to our own – I have direct experience of having to do this in the work environment in particular) and the general expectation that communities up and down the land will welcome and assimilate huge numbers of immigrants largely without question. I believe it’s incumbent upon our politicians to realise and accept that unfettered and uncontrolled migration at the national level coupled with an expectation of the virtually unconditional tolerance of norms, values and beliefs often wholly at odds with our own culture is a toxic mix for any society – even one as ancient, stable and tolerant as our own.


      1. My father (a Jew) escaped from central Europe to England when Hitler marched into Austria; my mother was born in England to Jewish refugees from the Czarist pogroms. Both my mother and I were brought up to be extremely grateful to the country that gave our family sanctuary, to respect the laws of this country and to try and be worthy citizens. We did not expect special or preferential treatment – we all came across some covert anti-semitism, even from such respectable bodies as the Royal Medical Colleges, but we shrugged our shoulders and got on with life.

        It’s a pity some other groups of immigrants don’t think like that.


        1. moraymint · ·

          Hear, hear!


        2. I like Jews myself, they’ve always been very good to me;-)


      2. With some honourable exceptions, our political elites have become control-freaks. They are in a symbiotic relationship with the PC cadre, which enjoys moral outrage and also enjoys being well paid by the taxpayer.

        Both have a vested interest in defending the status quo, and therefore in stifling dissent. As I understand it, the new laws that the Home Sec is introducing will criminalise criticism of national institutions – meaning, I assume, that you could no longer criticise either formal institutions or the legally-established status quo. Under these headings, you would not be allowed to criticise, for example, Parliament, or multiculturalism, as both are “national institutions”. I hope I’m wrong about this interpretation, because it looks to me like the end of free speech in the sense of “expressing opinions which differ from those of the state”.

        One of the strange historical echoes that I detect increasingly in recent times is Puritanism, which H.E. Bates described as “a poison in the English bloodstream”. If you look at the sheer number of things that have been banned you begin to see echoes of the Commonwealth, where Cromwell’s gang banned everything from pubs to theatres to folk-dancing. What is equally worrying is the apparent scale of public acceptance of the New Puritanism.

        This sort of thing soon leads to a bunker mentality. If one thing seems clear it is that very few people feel positive about the established parties, or for that matter the establishment more broadly. Meanwhile, I’m convinced that we’re staring at an economic slump, because our economy is based on borrowing money, spending it and passing the result off as “growth”.


        1. moraymint · ·

          Here is a relevant and topical allegory which rather supports the theme of your comment, Tim. For over half a century those of us who enjoy occasionally supping a strong ale could always avail ourselves of a rather noble beer brewed to commemorate a visit by Winston Churchill to Denmark in 1950. That beer is Carlsberg Special Brew and, although somewhat tainted by it being the preferred tipple of street drinkers, it is nonetheless a fine ale, created with cognac flavours amongst its tasting notes. Right now, our political class has decided that it’s unacceptable for citizens to be able to choose to drink such a beer – and so are manoeuvring to coerce Carlsberg to water down the brew. I could bang on about this, but at the heart of this matter is a growing trend of Nanny State interference in to every nook and cranny of our lives. For a libertarian like me this is a trend that on same days makes me feel physically sick …

          “Many people believe that liberty is the core political value of modern civilisation itself, the one that gives substance and form to all the other values of social life. They’re called libertarians …”


  6. Happy new year Moray.

    We are running out of time to leave it to ‘free and open discussions’ to start fixing the problems.
    I think it will be too late to leave it to the next generation to face the full brunt of what’s been started.
    it’s time for some action, to which end introducing highly selective immigration policy is a first essential step.This cannot occur whilst we are subject to the current EU immigration policy.

    We need to insist on open public discourse on the political nature of religion , with particular reference to Islam, and it was a discerning choice of words recently applied to recent events by the leader of the party of which I am a member , when he referred to ‘a fifth column’ in our midst.

    We also need to end all positive discrimination in every field of our national life.

    Well, there are three suggestions for getting the ball rolling and it needs to start right now , preferably by May 9th.


    1. moraymint · ·

      Thanks, and Happy New Year to you too!


  7. Archie Ponsonby · ·

    Spot on, as per Moray, and I for one have no idea what the answer might be. I’ve been watching this immigration thing develop since about 1960 or so, and whilst sniffing the wind and reading the runes, I soon refused to vote for any of the mainstream parties when it was obvious that they hadn’t a clue either. What must be done?
    Mass deportations? Will the population at large stand for that? What do we do about the children and grandchildren of immigrants who were born here? What do we do about “British” passport holders of whatever sound or dubious provenance? Whatever; I see major aggravation for our descendants!


    1. moraymint · ·

      The evidence is quite clear that the rate of societal change in the UK through the politically-motivated active facilitation of migration over the past 20 years or so has been wholly unprecedented. To me this is not about the wonders of naturally evolving ethnic diversity and multiculturalism; it’s more along the lines of undemocratic socio-economic irresponsibility. I fear that in the end we may pay the price for force-feeding our communities with aliens.

      I guess the main thing is to have and be able to have free discussion about a matter which is exercising a lot of people’s minds these days. The topical matter of the mass migration of peoples is proving to be both complex and vexatious. It’s raising all sorts of cultural, economic and social issues that we’ve not really seen on this scale before; certainly not in recent history. Therefore, in a democracy anyway, the topic should be aired, discussed and handled for what it is … for fear of something worse


  8. Bickers · ·

    Of course the French people weren’t asked. Ditto UK etc


    1. Bickers · ·

      You cannot compromise free speech or the right to offend


  9. It’s a damn mess, with no clear responses available. No, I don’t think murdering people for being offensive is acceptable, but were those satirists/cartoonists being so deliberately and provocatively offensive in the hope there would be a violent backlash? Yes, the French are paying a price for the way they behaved over Algeria, but…isn’t it time the Muslims in the banlieus stopped thinking of themselves as eternal victims (as do the Palestinians and too many of the American and West Indian Afro-Americans)?


  10. MikeO' · ·

    QE2 outreigns Q.Vickie next autumn.
    If there’s no sensible progress after May 2015,
    then November 2015 might see the military coup?


    1. H B Hall · ·

      First there has to be a military.



    That should be near enough.

    That should be good.


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