Our time’s politics produce surprises that overwhelm the observer. This happened to your correspondent at a local gathering about a proposition to be voted upon.
The case here has a venue that might activate the tag “too far away.” According to a costly American habit, the remote is dismissed with a “will not touch me.” Actually, there are developments that impact on us directly — a condition that shrinks “miles” to a detail. Since the invention of printing, with the emergence of TV and then the internet, trends unfold quickly, spread rapidly, and are global. That makes the idea of distance’s protection, into an illusion. The more you indulge in the fantasy, the more imperiled you become because what is “far away” now will come to visit you.
We live in an age of worldwide trends. One is the growing awareness of the uncontrolled migration of aggressive masses. The area, in which a Western-influenced way of life has developed, became the target of this new type of migration. Often, the experience with historic migration is used as a palliative even if the new content injected into an old phenomenon makes the analogy limp. Historic migration assimilated because the lawful individual migrant wished to start a new life in a new place. Today’s illegal migration of communities covets a life to be conducted according to old and failed ways in a new place.
The results caused by the difference, shock and rally the indigenous of the West. This reaction is an upshot of the quantity, the quality and of the mind-set of what is an inundation. Crime, demands raised without a contribution come up. Then there is the threat that the inferior man-made system of the host will be replaced by the Sharia. All this mobilizes those who, according to PC-inspired casting, are to meet their fate meekly to prove that they are tolerant.
Continue to read only in case that you find “this is what unfolds in my back yard.”
My meeting’s topic was a proposal that is the subject of a referendum. Switzerland — an embodiment of stability, good governance and competitiveness — is governed as a direct democracy: people vote on matters for which elsewhere the ruling class terms its subjects to be incompetent. Before the public discussion, a representative of the conservative People’s Party and a Socialist explained why they reject or approve a law designed to cope with the problems created by asylum seekers.
The pleas of whether and how to distinguish between genuine refugees (few), and adventurous economic migrants (many), followed predictable lines. So did the related matter of how to deport those deemed to be unqualified without their kind permission. Ditto, concerning criminals and elements that, as a matter of principle, refuses to accept local ways, except welfare, of which they are perennially dependent.
Protecting national borders — a global problem — could not be missing from the exchange. Naturally the left-liberal mantra, namely that only “European solutions” can work, was invoked. In itself, that is a frightening prospect because “Europe,” thanks to those that represent it, is (again!) unwilling to protect itself.
The verbal keystone came at the gathering’s end when the spokesmen were asked to sum up their case in a sentence or two.
The Socialist concluded with something like: “You can vote any way you wish. No matter what you decide, the mass will come because there is no way to stop it and what comes will stay here.”
To your stunned correspondent, a fundamental fact became clear. We might be debating details, however, in doing so we avoid a matter that none dare to call by its name. Numerous established parties — and their apparatchiks — do not care about the views and interests of the people that elect them. Czar Nicholas comes to mind. Warned, about losing the trust of the people, he retorted, that the real question is “whether I trust the people.”
Today, the determining fact is that several old parties of the left and of the wavering center are run by persons that do not trust the judgment of normal folks. They rate the people’s wishes as expressions of ignorance that results in an inability to discern their real interests. Thus, the governors’ task is to herd the mass protectively. The system is run for the benefit of those that are unable to fathom how thankful they should be for being guided to their good fortune.
A symptom of this “benevolent despotism” is that, even where there is no tradition of direct democracy, the desire for grass roots consultation is rising. At the same time, in Switzerland — a highly successful mature society — direct democracy is questioned by those that see themselves to be predestined leaders. Their doubts grow as the results from various plebiscites fail to meet the approval of learned leaders.
We are directed by an element that controls traditional parties, the press, “learning,” “culture” and which is growing convinced that to save it, democracy is to be regulated. Concurrently, the general population shows signs of unease to follow the exhortations of the makers of correct opinions. These tell that the man on the street, should not believe what he sees, but believe what he is told. The gap between the perceived facts and pretended reality from above is widening. Political correctness’ dictate is wearing threadbare in the process. Elitist pronouncements, according to which, certain common sense responses are immoral, improper, and amount to views held only by “bad persons,” are losing their power to impress.
As a result, a new type of political maker is merging. Their differences and merits notwithstanding the kind of Trump, Orbán, Le Pen, Kaczynski, Wilders, Petri, Hofer, and many others, convey a message. (Sanders and Putin are missing because they advocate a return to the ignored past.) Regardless of whether they get power now, their influential message is that things are not what they used to be. The support that is coming from political camps that used to oppose each other, underlines a thesis.
It is that elitist leaders have reduced the attraction of traditional parties which are unmasked to do less for their country than could be done. At the same time, an old magic wand fades. Only a short time ago, if you advocated majority rights, conceded cultural differences and incompatibilities, and affirmed popular sovereignty, you were called a right-wing extremist. That tag made you into a loser. Today, people only shrug and ignore the curse that is exposed as a placebo of politics.