February 29, 2016

Why immigration remains a class issue

Posted in Sunday Business Post · 88 comments ·

Cheap migrant labour is a boon to the well-off, but it’s time for a frank discussion on how it affects society’s poor

Do you like foreign accents? If the answer is yes, you are in a minority. When someone with a heavy accent speaks to you, do you register the things he or she is saying in the same way as someone with the same accent as yourself?

The subtle prejudices we have about accents are hardwired in our brains from thousands of years ago, when it was highly unlikely for a person with one accent to meet a person with another. It was even less likely for a person to hear a foreigner speak their native language with a foreign accent.

But this is all changing. There have never been more foreign accents in Ireland. And we are no exception. Right now, 250 million people are living in countries they were not born in, speaking languages that are not their native tongues.

Fascinating recent studies show how our brains have not caught up with this reality and how we process foreign accents. One study by Shiri Lev-Ari, a psycholinguist at the Max Planck Institute of Psycholinguistics in Amsterdam, asked non-native speakers of Polish, Turkish, Austrian-German, Korean and Italian to record banal statements such as “Ants don’t sleep” in English. Native English speakers recorded the same things. When native English speakers rated the recordings for their veracity, they rated the speakers with the heaviest accents as least true, while native speakers were rated most true.

It is thought that these negative judgments and prejudices are the result of the additional effort that our brains must make to process foreign speech. But this fear of, or resistance to, the foreign is also a latent form of self-protection, because the notion of coming into contact with someone who speaks differently triggers deep psychological alarm bells. The history of humanity is the story of one tribe conquering another, one crowd invading the space of another and typically enslaving the loser. Therefore, an encounter with someone who sounded different probably ended violently and badly for one party.

Thus, deep in our brains, the very sound of someone with a foreign accent triggers doubts, insecurities and prejudices.

These prejudices and fears bring me to immigration and the refugee issue that is tearing the EU asunder.

Greece is the frontline, and it is being told to deal with thousands of migrants while Austria, Hungary and Slovakia shut the door. Because the other EU countries are closing their borders, Greece is becoming a “human skip” into which the EU is happy to dump countless refugees.

It is like a giant Gaza Strip, teeming with people who want to move, but are not allowed to. And what is the cause of Greece’s problems? German policy over which the Greeks and the rest of the EU have no influence.

Germany wants the rest of the EU to take its “fair share” of what many EU countries see as Germany’s migrants. Germany invited them in, so many European countries are saying: “You deal with them, they’re your problem.” This division is particularly stark between the central European, former communist countries and Germany.

There are many theories about why this is so, but what divides the European countries on immigration is money. At its core, modern immigration is a class issue.

Immigrants, by definition, compete with the poorest local people in the job market, in the housing market and for access to health and schools. This is a fact.

Economists tend to miss the central point. While the economy might get workers, society gets people.

Therefore the technocratic language of the economy is not able to deal with the totality of immigration and can’t deal with the fact that there are winners and losers in this game.

If you have (like me) the luxury of writing for the newspapers and working as an economist, or have a professional position with status and influential networks, there’s little chance that a new immigrant will take your job. If, on the other hand, you are labouring on the sites or working in a bar, there’s a serious chance that your wages and job security will be affected by new people coming into the country looking for work.

When the borders open, the real labour force of a country like Ireland isn’t two million, but closer to the 300 million of the whole EU, plus the new migrants. This is what scares people who compete with the migrants for everything.

But for the relatively wealthy, immigration has been a boon. There are more taxi drivers, more cleaners, more shop assistants, more nannies; in short, the service economy, the one that services the relative wealthy, booms. But are wages in that sector booming? No.

The relatively wealthy don’t have to worry about immigrants pushing up rents because, frankly, the immigrants can’t afford to live in posh areas, so they compete for housing not with the relatively wealthy, but with the relatively poor.

It’s a similar story in schools. Immigrant kids don’t, by and large, go to private schools. They go to state schools, where they compete for the state’s resources with Irish citizens.

These are the facts. Immigration is a class issue, and the richer you are, the greater the luxury you have to pontificate about immigration because either you are not affected; or if you are, you are affected positively.

We should no longer fear foreign accents or process them in the way our brain still does, conditioned as it is from millenniums of fight-or-flight impulses. However, this does not mean we shouldn’t understand the real economic sensitivities that are different in different classes.

Although you wouldn’t know it from listening to the election debates, migration is one of the key issues for this society and Europe. It would be a good thing if we began to discuss it openly, and most critically, when the discussion brings us into uncomfortable territory.

  1. goldbug




  2. bluegalway

    It’s not race the majority of people have a problem with, it’s the huge number of immigrants that are let in. And the deliberate oppression of Irish traditions, culture and values. Immigration is all about big business. Nothing more.
    Systems of power are set up to privilege the elite, who happen to be white. The same elite that is using immigration to squeeze ever more out of the working class, with the assistance of useful idiots on the left. To call Ireland a racist society, is grossly unfair. I’d like to know where this racially harmonious utopia is that we are being compared with, because I think Ireland is pretty sweet to live in as a minority. Native Irish people are about the least racist people going, but constant accusations of racism, and years of trying to replace the workforce with cheap migrant labour are not helping.
    I’ve noticed a disproportionate amount of racism coming from minorities, and migrants, to be fair. Racism is something that Ireland is now importing, it is not good for any society for the indigenous working class to feel marginalized, there are enough examples from history for anyone but the blinkered, the stupid, or those with axes to grind, to realize that.

    • Emily Maher

      And not a word about it during the election. I heard a journalist on the phone to Mary Wilson on Drive Time. He was asked abut the issues on the door in Castleisland. He told her “Certainly immigration is a big issue”.

      Her response? “um” and then she changed the subject to segue into a pre-made bit on broadband.


      We had politicians proposing an NHS system in Ireland and homes for anyone who needs one but nobody puts the question to them – how can you possible of massive social programs like that when we have open borders to the entire EU and seemingly beyond. Have they not seen the reports about immigrants crippling the NHS in the UK and flying in for 200k per anum cancer treatment?

      immigration has consolidated its place as the most important issue facing the EU currently, rising 20 percentage points in the last six months. It is the most important issue for citizens in all Member States except for Portugal. And not a word about it the entire election.

      There was only one new political party who dared to bring the issue up – Identity Ireland who ran one seat in North Cork. Their leader Peter O Loughlin was hunted down and beaten on the streets of Dublin by far-left, open-border extremist thugs. This was his picture on the ballot:

      • coldblow

        Good comment, Emily, reflecting what many sensible people have long been thinking. It isn’t easy to use your own name when discussing this (I know from my own experience) for obvious reasons.

        I linked here before to the disruption by anti-racists of the public meeting to launch Identity Ireland and we know what happened when Pegida tried to hold a rally in Dublin. Some papers thought there was uncertainty about who was chasing and beating up whom. I’ll look at your links later.

        • Grzegorz Kolodziej

          Do you think that’s bad? A Polish nationalist politician, Mr Marian Kowalski, whose family had fought against the Nazis, came to Ireland – not to canvass the Irish, but to meet with the Polish diaspora – and his meeting was stopped by anti-fascists protest groups (very weird people, if you look at the video; what can they know about politics in Poland?!).
          Windows were broken – by the anti-fascists, you guess (it’s like the first Independence March in Poland when the German Antifa came to Warsaw with baseball cups and knives – incidentally not stopped by normally insanely strict Polish police – and masked young Germans attacked 80 year old Polish veterans, whereupon they found refuge in the Trotskyite’s newspapers headquarters, protected by the Polish police – the video from that event – which me and my Irish friend have witnessed – went to the world under the “Polish fascist riots” headline).

          Here is the link to a 3 min video with lefty groups protesting about the politician they do not know:


          Later on, Mr Kowalski gave an interview to the Irish media, but as he did not come across a Nazi or anti-semitic as they hoped (plus he exposed the historical ignorance of one of the leading Irish journalist – I won’t name the names because of the suing culture (she thought the Polish underground movement was fighting for the Germans against the Jews – Mr Kowalski’s jaw dropped).

          Have you guys heard of this crowd


          Contrary to what is being said, they are not at all racist – there are other nationalities taking part in their marches. They just do not want two different law systems competing in one country for whose civilisation wins (you can only be tolerant if your opponent tolerates you).

          • coldblow

            Good video. I left a comment including a quote from George Orwell about the meaning of the word fascism.

            I got it here:


          • Lads I don’t think there’s any chance of Sharia Law being introduced into Britain or Ireland in the next millenium so I wouldn’t get my knickers in a twist over it. They are just trying to scare you. Both the nutty Islamic fundamentalists and the neo-liberal war mongerers. Don’t fall for it lads, you are all most smarter than that. It’s totally bogus.

          • coldblow


            I don’t know if you include me in the ‘lads’ but I have never written the word Sharia before.

            ‘They are just trying to scare you.’

            Who are ‘they’? And why do they want to scare me? Where does the war-mongering come in? I am genuinely interested.

            As for ‘rapefugees’ I have been suspicious from the start that this is an exaggeration, both what they are supposed to have done and its co-ordination, which stretches credulity. The debate should be sensible and reasoned but it swings from daftness in one direction to equal daftness in the other.

            Having said that, Sharia does now appear to be an issue. How did it ever come to this?

          • coldblow

            Just to add, the only commentator who I follow closely (apart from David here, *on economics*) is Peter Hitchens, and he has been against Western intervention since before the Iraq War.

        • coldblow

          Here’s the link to the Identity Ireland meeting.


          • Grzegorz Kolodziej

            It takes one to know one lol:


            Btw, those people you have seen on the video – when Marian Kowalski went out trying to ask them who told them to come here, they all scampered off (he was not trying to be aggressive or anything – but he is scary looking).

            He then was asked what he thought of the Irish he had met and he said “like babies in the woods”.

            Even though I am not Irish and I do not know him, I have been living here (and living with the Irish) for so long that I felt hurt, so I wrote an e-mail to him explaining the political situation in Ireland and that not all the Irish are so brainwashed (many of them people in my link are not Irish anyway, which raises the question HOW did they knew a relatively unknown Polish nationalist politician will have a speech in the hotel?!).

            Is THIS what the Irish G2 is doing?!!!

          • coldblow

            The media coverage of the Dublin Pegida march that never was was muddled and incoherent. I actually don’t think they understood what was going on. From what I can tell, piecing it together from various reports, O’Loughlin got beaten up earlier that day on the Luas (I think) as we has heading there (he probably had more sense than to turn up). The anti-free speechers chased their opponents into shops and pubs but (one paper reported) the pubs turned them out again. Very public spirited of them.

            I don’t know much about Pegida but I suspect it covers quite a broad spectrum from respectable people to a trouble-making fringe. I get the impression that one march, probably in Cologne, came under bombardment from the anti-fascists and tried to get away to shelter but were shoved back by lines of police who told them it was their own fault for turning up.

    • Irish people are not racist by any stretch of the imagination, I agree with that. Having had non-Irish and non-white wives (yes plural, the shame) and girlfriends visit Ireland I can honestly say the way they were treated in Ireland was great and a credit to Irish people.

  3. bluegalway

    In Europe we have had high levels of immigration in the past three decades. We apologize for our culture, in the face of immigrant groups that stridently assert theirs. And we are funding our own cultural suicide through social welfare benefits. It may be already too late to salvage what we think of as Europe. Why should we feel guilty about every crisis on the planet, particularly when Turkey and the Gulf States won’t help their neighbors? It is only going to get worse. The world is overpopulated and resources are declining. Are we going to create a sustainable society for our children, or just allow our countries to be swamped and transformed into an unworkable mess?
    What is happening in England’s capital is happening here. In the last Irish census only 73% of people in Dublin were native Irish. So far this century, more than 1.2 million white British Londoners left the city for the suburbs, not because they are bigots but because they wanted homes with gardens and better schools. Fewer non-whites made the same move, leaving the capital a far less integrated place.
    Even among those who stayed, research by UK’s Social Integration Commission showed that social mixing across the lines of race and religion was, relatively speaking, least likely in multi-ethnic London — because the more choice people have, the more they choose to hang out with their own kind.
    Forcing different communities to live together was never going to work. Especially when you watch the government ministers who are happy to force communities together by way of social engineering, while buying their own homes as far away from the nightmare they foist on others. Their hypocrisy is astounding. Don’t blame far-Right groups for rising-up to Left-wing bully tactics which silence anyone with legitimate worries; you reap what you sow.

    • pablos

      There is undoubtedly culture in Europe and we are the beneficiaries of hundreds if not thousands of years of striving to improve the human condition. What is it I wonder are most people referring to when they use the word culture. Is it Irish culture? I don’t remember much of that when I was growing up, what I remember is U.S and U.K programming on TV and everyone putting Ireland and anything Irish down. Very little differentiates us from the Brits, or even the U.S. So is it European culture we are talking about? So we don’t praise beating our wives and children or don’t go about killing them to keep our honour and these are improvements to be sure, but is that what we’re talking about when we mention culture? I don’t think so, what we are really referring to is our own comfort, not to have to strain to understand someones broken English, put up with their gestures and their strange smell. We don’t want these people undercutting us or putting us out of work. We don’t want them flooding our schools. What is culture for most people anyway? Fair City on the box, English football teams and a pint down the pub. Nothing wrong with that of course. Can we at least be honest on this forum when we talk about issues and try not to bastardize the language. Is there anything wrong with just saying you don’t want them here? Isn’t that what it all boils down to when you strip away the padding? How quick we ditch our supposed culture when the going gets rough, there is a solution to rape gangs that is within the law. But of course nobody really believes that the criminal justice system works, but we put up with it until the foreign man shows up. Why is this, I think it’s because people are afraid to tell the truth about what is really going on. It’s not just politicians lying that is at fault, they lie because that is all that we want to hear them say. I would finish with the analogy of the Titanic, some of the lifeboats which sailed away from the floundering vessel were half-empty. It is said that some people who tried to climb in were beaten by their occupants just so that they wouldn’t topple the boat. How do you judge them?

  4. Mike Lucey

    The problem definitely needs to be discussed openly and honestly at this point before things get out of hand.

    The problem as I see it is the Neocons in Washington. Its been war after war for the past 15 years and we are now seeing the end result, mass migration and it appears many are economic migrants. This has been proven to be the case in Sweden and its now obvious they regret their open arms policy.

    By all means Ireland should facilitate refugees that have a genuine fear for their lives in their homeland. While in Ireland they should be given every assistance in all areas including education of their children and further education to the adults if they wish to part take but I think all this should only be offered on the understanding that they will be repatriated once its safe for them to return to their countries.

    When one thinks about it, who else will these troubled countries ever be able to get back onto a solid footing if some many of their citizens are leaving.

  5. redriversix

    Immigration is not a problem for us..its a problem for immigrants.Economic or from war torn countries.

    Economic .. ? I don’t believe we have the right to refuse anybody who wishes to contribute to society as we Irish moved all over the world in search of a better life.

    Refugees from War or unrest or persecution ?

    If we in the West stopped bombing their Countries or stopped propping up Dictators ..we would not have the horror we have today …the horror we have is watching people suffer , we are not suffering like they are .

    During the boom , the one constant thing we had was 100,000 unemployed ..this was during full employment…so the burden our society carries as a percentage of our population is 100/150,000 who cannot , will not work or who are simply unemployable.

    Irish people simply do not wan to do menial work anymore..so lets leave that to the immigrants.!

    The biggest asshole in History has been and continues to be the White Man….We are the ones who should be afraid ..of ourselves and our “Leaders”

    I would be more afraid of Al Cracker than Al Qaeda.



    [ A white Man]

    • A1 Barry. It’s a smokescreen for more wars.

    • Grzegorz Kolodziej

      A relatively short comment this time :-)

      “I don’t believe we have the right to refuse anybody who wishes to contribute to society as we Irish moved all over the world in search of a better life.”

      Yes, but are the two things – social migration and economic migration – not being confused in this comment?

      I know that there are many people opposed to both (and some supporting both), but my comments were addressed at the phenomena of people who come and do not contribute to the society. This was not the case in the case of the post-famine Irish arriving to Boston and New York. Yes, the criminality rates among them were ridiculously high, the impact on low paying jobs was negative for the (mainly black) American low paid workers (their wages halved within less than two decades of the post-famine Irish arriving) and positive for the consumers (prices of services halved), but the Irish in America were not getting social housing and pocket money to drink – they had to earn it.

      Besides, they did not introduce sharia laws in America:


      “If we in the West stopped bombing their Countries or stopped propping up Dictators”

      If one empire stops expanding, another fill the void. It has always been the case and it will always be. That the West should not have done that is another thing (that’s why President Reagan sacked the neo-cons from his administration).

      “Refugees from War or unrest or persecution?”

      Did I not say in the past I was not completely against helping people escaping from war (how else do you think nearly one million Ukrainians ended up in Poland? – and they do not cause any troubles so far because once, they have to work and secondly, they do not want to introduce a Sharia law in Poland – the minute they start with their Banderism in Poland, there will be troubles – but they do not so far, so there is not)?

      But what’s that got to do with relatively wealthy (wealthier than most Poles who came to Ireland in 2004 and much wealthier than the Irish in 19th century US) social migrant arriving from safety of their camps in Turkey and expecting everything to be handed to them on a silver plate?

      Even the official Eurostat data show all this spiel with “escaping from war in Syria” was a sick joke.

      There is many of them from Nigeria or Somalia, for example. When did Ireland bomb Nigeria and Somalia?

      • redriversix

        Reagan sacked the neo-cons..really ??? who ?

        Ireland is the finest aircraft carrier the U.S ever had…Shannon is a U.S base and is used for operations all over the World. We , as a nation are indirectly linked to conflict anywhere the West had decided to liberate or bring Democracy to…Iraq , Afghanistan , Yemen , Somalia , Libya , Nigeria , etc etc etc

        I would not swap places with anyone living in a Camp , in Turkey or anywhere else.

        Will some immigrants have a ulterior motive ? Of course.

        Just like the Irish immigrants to the U.S or elsewhere in the 19th or 20th Century who were victims of persecution and who did raise money for “the cause” back home

        I was lucky enough to visit Poland and enjoyed my time there , as i have enjoyed meeting polish immigrants here , I am always amazed at how happy and pleasant they are considering their Country was under someones else jackboot for such a long time.

        Reagan , sacked neo cons ?..wow …still stunned..must have replaced them with worse.

        Reagan was nuts…not a very academic opinion , i grant you..but he was “our nut” therefore ” a good guy.

        Right wing Wars across south America…he wasn’t much good.

  6. NeilW

    It’s a central issue in the British Referendum, but nobody is talking about it. It is the elephant in the room. The “don’t mention the war” topic.

    I have asked supposed progressive economists where the analysis is comparing what we have now, with the proposed future controls – where EU citizens would have to apply for a work visa like everybody else in the world currently has to, but where the requirements would be eased slightly because the level from Europe would not be as great.

    No engagement at all.

    All the analysis I’ve read conflates high skilled immigrants that would always have got a visa and those that would not. There is no separation of the two, and unsurprisingly the aggregate shows a net benefit of immigration. Of course if you separate the two classes of immigrant you’d find a greater return if you just selected the higher skilled immigrants for what should be fairly obvious reasons – you’re stealing the investment of another country in the individual.

    I also see nothing about the beggar thy neighbour impact of immigration. If a skilled doctor comes here from abroad, what does wherever they come from do for medical care? We’re not swapping doctors around here, we’re draining them from poorer countries. How is that progressive?

  7. Colm MacDonncha

    Doesn’t the same apply to D4 accents when they cross the river? Ross O’Carroll-Kelly going to Croke ‘Pork’ for the rugby was hilarious a few years ago. On a more serious note though,the stuff happening in European cities at the moment goes way beyond the reaction people have to an alien accent…Of course there will be a violent reaction to immigrants with completely alien ideologies and value systems,some of which are positively medieval in the context of 21st century cosmopolitan Europe,flooding the towns and cities of demographically challenged societies.

  8. Grzegorz Kolodziej

    Sadly I do not have time today to write a longer comment, but as I have posted on this blog on immigration many times (and David’s article is largely a repetition of one of his previous article – oh David, hangover this weekend? ;-), I will reiterate my views on that too, in short points. I won’t have time to address comments though. Sorry! (btw, I did not have time to respond to all comments last time – just shortly – with “google trends” I meant the most sought after economists in Brazil by google searches (me mate works for Google) – that has changed from Keynes to von Mises).

    1. The immigration problem is, in my opinion, mainly a social welfare problem. On that I agree with Mr. Farage – it should be 5 years contributions before any benefits are paid. As to asylum seeking, this can be easily done from their camps in Turkey or from countries where they came from – no need to pay a few thousand euro to people smugglers and trespass the EU borders. Believe you me, those two solutions combined would solve virtually all our problems with Muslim invasion (but it’s too late now). I would like to remind everyone that a Pole coming to Ireland does not get any social welfare until 2 years of tax contribution – why Muslims from Pakistan should be positively discriminated by rewarding them unearned welfare and social housing (btw, I am against paying child benefits to kids living in Poland – sure it’s even bad for them kids to have split families)?

    2. But it is also civilisation problem too. Multiculturalism is one thing, but now we have to deal with a different civilisation (the difference is incompatible law systems – like sharia law in the UK and France). The readers should make themselves familiar with Feliks Koneczny’s difference between culture and civilisation (which inspired Samuel Huntington).

    3. I do not agree with one of the interesting counterarguments proposed in a response to me that people coming to the US could form a well-functioning society because of vast prairies, for even immigrants coming to congested New York and Boston turned out fine in second generation, and not because they respected local customs (the Irish in first generation were committing almost 9 times more crimes per capita than the Germans – look at David’s book – yet the Irish turned out to be the success story in the US, as did the Poles, the French, the Jews, the Italians, the Chinese – a lot of IT inventions in the US came from Chinese working in the US – and, well, the Germans of course).

    So these people did not assimilate to any culture, they brought something positive with them. What are the current migrants invited by Germany bringing? This:


    Now guys, if THE INDIA TIMES – not a country known for respecting women writes this, you can imagine.

    Bluegalway wrote an interesting comment:

    “Native Irish people are about the least racist people going, but constant accusations of racism”

    Dear BlueGalway – I agree with you and I hope that you do not take my (or actually David’s, because the thing about after-famine criminality rates comes from his book – I do not have time now to check for a quote) comments as me having a go at the Irish. All I am saying is that as von Clausewitz pointed out, it’s the weak country that should be blamed for being attacked, because it encourages the strong by it’s weakness.

    The European civilisation is weak and it is dying.
    And this brings me to point 4:

    4. The 19th century wild immigrants from Eastern Europe, Italy and Ireland could thrive in the US because not only they had to rely on their children rather than social welfare, but they were bound by THE SAME CORE VALUES: GREEK SCIENCE TRADITION, ROMAN LAW AND CHRISTIANITY.

    What did we replace them with?

    Abortions, European populations decline, consumerism, hedonism, disarming the Europeans (ban on gun ownership) constant attacks on families (just look at how marriage is considered uncool in Hollywood for the last 100 years and being a bit of spare is the way to go), gay culture which makes our men effeminate (where were the transvestites promoters when the Muslims were stoning them in Germany?).

    BlueGalway – it is not only the Irish that are made feeling guilty for being Irish, it is all European nations. AND IT IS DELIBERATE. And instead of whinging, we should try to create an independent media, starting from scratch, like it was done in Poland.

    Last but not least, a fascinating discussion on immigration:


    Just one thing – they are wrong on Germans in Russia. Socialism totally wiped out their culture. I knew a 100pc German-origin girl born in Russia and she had HUGE problems assimilating in Germany. On the other hadn, there are ethnic Dutch and Germans that had been living in Poland for centuries (some of them retained some of their language) and they did assimilate. The second generations of assimilated immigrants are usually the best patriots, as proven from the Irish/Polish history (but not them Muslim lot!).

    Good day to all.

    P.S. No one else is gonna tell me how they voted???!!! Shy kids get no sweets.

    • Sideshow Bob

      For me, shorter to the point comments are better Grzegorz, they are comments on someone else´s blog, after all!

      Seems only polite and respectful to the author (and other contributors) not to swamp his clear concise work with your over-spilling thoughts at every turn.

      Surely putting your main thoughts down on your own blog (possibly providing the odd link here to it for those who are interested, though I wouldn´t be one in particular) and limiting your responses here to pertinent points only would be a neater, less frustrating and better solution all around?

      • redriversix

        Amen Brother Bob


      • Grzegorz Kolodziej

        But my blog would not get near as many readers (and it would be more time consuming), and besides, without my over-spilling comments David would not have written his article for Sunday Business Post on Greece and the London Debt Agreement (praised by commentators like Mr. Eddie and noticed abroad) – which was mainly based on my comments to the point of using a copy-and-paste technique at times ;-).

        Besides, there is so many wonderful people whose views I got to know by commenting on this blog – like Coldblow, Adam, Deco or DB4545 (where is he?). Having my own blog would be a nice self-promotion all right, but I am more interested in implementing political changes in Ireland, which have to start from conceptual changes – to overcome the cultural Marxism – and I cannot do both.

        Maybe could learn a thing or two from my comments too, for example you should read my criticism of Keynesian multiplier (I have debunked it twice) before you start commenting on Kalecki – I do not remember you having anything to say to that.

        I do agree with you though that shorter to the points are easier to read – but this may come at the cost of simplicity.

        • I’d have to disagree with Barry and Bob here, keep going Grzegorz.

          At least the Hari Seldon psychohistorical stuff has been put to bed.


          • redriversix

            Hey Adam….I like Gregs posts….but damn ! their long.!!!

          • Yeah I usually read them in the evening when things are quieter.

          • Sideshow Bob

            I never mentioned Kalecki, you did.

            I did point out that you posted some seriously bogus numbers on Ireland´s vs Poland´s nett EU contributions/reciepts per capita a few articles back, and I see these attempted slights now as mainly an attempt to get back at me personally.

            So you admit that you post on here to get more attention for your thoughts? You are riding on David McWilliams coat-tails then? Like Bon-bon was, or some others? Perhaps very few people are actually paying attention. Normally, I scroll right past your missives. They are too long and wander off topic far too much, and you clearly can´t tolerate plurality of thought from what I can see. Nor do I care a jot about Poland. The blog owner here has put no restriction on length of posts, which is his prerogative. Personally, I think any post which exceeds the length of the headline articles is definitely too much. That is my two cents on it.

            I also know that I contribute less when I see such large posts in a comments section. I imagine other people desist from posting, too and this for me ( Adam if you are reading ) increases the homogeneity and reduces the variety of voices on here.

            And why do you think more people pay attention to you here than if you had your own blog? If you had your own blog you would know if your thoughts were in demand, in terms of actual visits to it. Surely that would be more satisfying for you? I have no intention of following you in detail, and I never have. Others may do though, I don´t know.

            I do heavily resent your patronizing attitude here above regarding “learning from you´´, whoever you think you are relative to me.

            So, I am leaving the matter there.

          • Where do I come into this one Bob haha? I am reading yes but I don’t know what you were referring to exactly.

            I don’t read all Grzegorz posts, just the ones that interest me. I skim past the ones that don’t.

            His postsand their length don’t have any bearing on whether I post or not myself.

          • Sideshow Bob

            Hi Adam,

            Sorry, perhaps I should have separated the comment for you. I wished to point out that I think(,though currently unsupported,) that there is less interaction on the blog, and less interesting debate when there are many large wandering and almost domineering posts. I think many people who would post will take a look and think “here is a right bunch of headbangers I am not going near this in a fit´´. I hope that is clearer!

          • Ok gotcha, like I say, I am happy to just scroll past (or delete from my inbox) the long mails that Grzegorz (or anyone else) writes that don’t interest me.

            Their presence doesn’t particularly bother me one way or another – but each to his own.

        • coldblow

          Thanks Greg.

          I came across DB45 (he had dropped a 45) a few weeks ago on YouTube. Actually, I think he may have been discussing immigration.

      • coldblow

        Shorter comments are in general easier to read but I excuse Grzegorz as his are packed with information, much of it original for Irish readers. I like long comments if they are good ones and one can always scroll down.

        • Grzegorz Kolodziej

          It is such a pity that this website does not allow a proper editing, as the way I would normally write e-mails to friends is to use different font sizes, colours, footnotes, etc.

          This would allow my inputs to be divided into some sort of chapters few lines each, and the readers would be able to only read on the topic which interest them, with some more technical discussions in footnotes.

          Many times I start with an intention of writing something shorter, but then I think that some information require explanations or giving sources (which, when taken from books, I try to give with pages and editions).

          This endeavour to put my comments in wider contexts (i.e., no use writing that I differentiate between different cultures and different civilisations if I do not explain I mean in a way that starts with Koneczny and finishes with Huntington, and not necessarily in terms of skin colour or even country of origin – see the assimilated Hindus in UKiP) comes at a cost of editing – I simply do not have time to proofread my comments, and sometimes I would clutch my head in disbelief as to grammar errors I make or missing words.

          It has to be said that I have dropped blogging on Polish websites (I wrote a few articles covering politics in Ireland – on Lisbon Treaty, the demise of Greens, NAMA, etc, and I have had a long public debate with the former Law and Justice politician on Polish geopolitical choices) in favour of blogging on David’s blog (I cannot do both).

          Btw, Coldblow, you once gave me a link to your inputs on some other website or words to that effect, where you had you put your name on it. I never had a chance to look at it and it is quite difficult to navigate this blog in terms of past entries (it is like those legal websites which are not indexed, so that you always need a lawyer to prepare for court battles).

          • It’s a shambles, it’s one of the worst designed blogs I’ve ever seen. But we soldier on…

          • McCawber

            Could I suggest that you break your posts into two or three where you deem a natural break has occurred.

          • Sideshow Bob

            Yeah McCawber, that is a very valid suggestion. Deco (hereabouts) uses that to very good effect. His posts are always very readable.

          • coldblow


            Here’s the link. My contributions are disjointed because my first post was withheld but the published the second, which relied on it. They held up another one later so I posted it again in a slightly different way and then they released the original so now there are, if memory serves, two. They published a slightly mocking reply of mine to Michael Hennigan only to remove it again later (again if memory serves). They didn’t mean anything, only they were trying to protect the blog, and I don’t blame them. My posts are all solely from a psychological angle and I doubt if anyone had a clue what I was going on about, any more than here.


            I was struck by how feeble many of the posts were, including from posters who have written some interesting contributions over the years. The open borders poster was interesting in that he said more or less exactly what I expected he would. When I looked up Legrain’s website I laughed when saw what he had written, for the same reason.

      • Grzegorz Kolodziej

        Sideshow Bob,

        You are right, NeilW has mentioned Kalecki, you have just referred to Brazilian economy(which was influenced by Kalecki in terms of planning).

        Like I said, I do not always have time to proof-read or track everything – but you still should read my comments on Keynes, it would be for your benefit.

        “So you admit that you post on here to get more attention for your thoughts? You are riding on David McWilliams coat-tails then? Like Bon-bon was, or some others?”

        “Personally, I think any post which exceeds the length of the headline articles is definitely too much.”

        Someone said that before to me – was it you? – and then a few people responded that they strongly disagreed.

        Maybe too few people read your comments to even deny it.
        Ah, no, it’s actually the other way round – if you study google trends (I do not, but like I said, my mate works for Google and he does; besides, it can be checked via David’s twitter account), you’ll see that the amount of David’s subscribers jumps after weeks with my comments :-)

        I do not know who Bon-bon was, like you do not know how the multiplier works :-)

        “If you had your own blog you would know if your thoughts were in demand, in terms of actual visits to it.”

        I said maintaining my own blog “would be more time consuming”, that “there is so many wonderful people whose views I got to know by commenting on this blog” and “without my over-spilling comments David would not have written his article for Sunday Business Post on Greece and the London Debt Agreement”.

        Can’t you read properly?

        “Normally, I scroll right past your missives.”

        Not everyone was born to understand economics, but maybe if you were not scrolling right past my missives, your comments would be published in Sunday Business Post too :-)

        “you clearly can´t tolerate plurality of thought from what I can see”

        I can tolerate plurality of thought all right, I cannot tolerate your lack of arguments shown by you only being able to resort to ad hominem arguments.

        “I did point out that you posted some seriously bogus numbers on Ireland´s vs Poland´s nett EU contributions/reciepts per capita”

        Yes, and I did answer that you did notice I was talking about this year (there will be a huge delay, partly to make things as difficult as possible for the new government). I was also talking about the difference of funds ALLOCATED to Poland and actually USED – you will not find that in that wikipedia article, but since you do not even know what I was talking about, I won’t cast pearls before swines going and looking for the data for you.

        Btw, it’s funny you wrote

        “Your EU numbers are rubbish Grzegorz.
        Poland from 2007-2013 contributed €22 Billion and received €30 Billion. Nett €8 Billion or roughly a €200 per head gain”.

        as 2013 was the last year Poland was a netto benefitient of the EU funds.

        “I also know that I contribute less when I see such large posts in a comments section.” – no, you contribute less because you are to f…g lazy to do a proper research. Show me any post of yours that is as well researched as my posts on Keynes.

        “Nor do I care a jot about Poland.” – you do not care about proper research and proper reading too, and because of people like you Ireland is doing much worse than it could have, if it had the courage to free herself from Berlin.

        Last but not least, I was specifically talking about German netto contributions to Poland – which they greatly complaign about on their TV – via the EU against Poland’s contributions to Germany via profit transfers from Poland (partly achieved by tax cheating).

        Go and check for Open Europe report on Poland’s 10 years of EU membership. In terms of the cost (where subsidies are counted against everything else EU-related) of the EU membership Poland is 6th in the EU.

        “Surely that would be more satisfying for you? I have no intention of following you in detail, and I never have. Others may do though, I don´t know.” – the most satisfying thing for me is that David’s article on Greece which attracted international attention was based on my blog entry – something that you can only dream of, Bob.

        “I see these attempted slights now as mainly an attempt to get back at me personally” – not at all, I just brought your attention to your lazy perusal of my comments (basically you constructed a straw man, quoting data for 2007-2013 when I wrote about 2016 and gave a specific figure)

        But comments like “your patronizing attitude” and “So you admit that you post on here to get more attention for your thoughts?” (and who got paid and got attention for the article in Sunday Business Post – me or David?) are your attempt at getting back at me (surely it is not me that I can learn from on EU payments and Keynes?).

        David, Cooldude, Tony Brogan, Adam, DB4545, Deco, Michael Coughlan – these are people I have learned from – and contrary to what you are saying about me not tolerating plurality, most of them have views very different to mine.

        You? Come up with something substantial (like something which will be quoted in Sunday Business Post) and I will be first to admit I have learned from you.

        • Grzegorz Kolodziej

          Yes, and I did answer that you did notice I was talking about this year (there will be a huge delay, partly to make things as difficult as possible for the new government). I was also talking about the difference of funds ALLOCATED to Poland and actually USED.

          you did notice = you did not notice

          the difference of = the difference between

  9. Deeper understanding of how the mind operates regarding attachment and this knowledge is one of the tools used to inform a journey towards enlightenment when understood and not through conjecture .

    Descartes : ‘I don’t think therefore I am ‘ .

  10. Irish PI

    “It would be a good thing if we began to discuss it openly, and most critically, when the discussion brings us into uncomfortable territory”

    Careful now David lest you be immediately labelled a rascist! A few people and one aspiring political party have been beaten up and had lives and property festroyed in Ireland because they wanted to address this topic in a adult manner. The new Nazism is called Anti Fascist Action these days.
    You have missed the demographics of the EU and especially Germany as to why they are doing this..Germany is dying and its birth rate is falling off.This ill concieved plan was based on the concept of the Turkish guest worker in the 1960s,who would come in work,and hopefully go home to Turkey with his new Mercedes and Grundig Telly with his brood,or settle in Germany and become a good German citizen,which many did.three generations on.Dont bother go to Neu Koln district in Berlin if you are a white german woman.Its now a shadow district like any other Muslim enclave in any European capital.
    High unemployment in the youth which is becoming islamisised at a steady pace.So dumb thinking in the Bundestag has been Bring in these Muslims,arent they grand and settled now in Germany being dilligent workers?Shure they ‘ll settle down within a generation or so and they will be German and swelling our pouplation in no time.Just like the Turks did when we wanted cheap labour and werent prepared to do the dirty work ourselves” Is the thinking there…Despite the fact that the average German will by 2050 be somwhat brown and hardly drinking beer or tucking into some schweine braten and have turned the Colonge Catherderal into a mosque is irrevelant to Frau Merkel or the industrialists. Yet ironically they complain they have no gifted labour force who can speak German or English….Helllooo Germany…Paddy is always looking for work…Why arent you advertising for jobs over here??ever seen an ad for BMW,Siemens or whomever here in Ireland?? Plus we do breed quite abit as well.So why bring in Mustaffa or achmed who havent a dogs notion of working or integrating.When there is a whole continent of people to choose from Germany??

  11. I love foreign accents and learing new languages and dialects. I guess that means I’m in a minority. Sad really.

  12. Dr. Lovemuffin

    In the past we knew birth rates and death rates and could plan housing. With open door immigration we can’t plan. Our politicians talk about the housing supply when they should also be talking about the housing demand as well (which includes the fact that non-nationals are inflating demand for housing). It’s simple supply and demand economics. In addition, if we ever try a house building programme, the builders will bring in eastern European labour which will increase demand for housing………

    • Sideshow Bob

      (I love the name, Doctor)

      Yes, these are simple important points and apply also to the many services that are automatically acquired by immigrants as a right by reason of residence;free schooling, free healthcare and other governmental services. Open door immigration distorts the effective provision all of these as well, yet we commit as a society to continue to provide them and share our resources regardless of this.

      • Grzegorz Kolodziej

        “by reason of residence” – by reason of 2 years of tax contributions.

        “free healthcare” – immigrants get free healthcare in Ireland only if they have Medical Card (same for the Irish people). I had to spent enormous amounts of money on GP visit alone, let alone things like dentists.

        One sentence, two factual mistakes. And that’s even before I reiterate that I had quoted the “netto paying” figure for 2016 and you quoted statistics for 2007-2013.

        “Open door immigration distorts the effective provision”

        I agree with you on that one. It’s hard to call it the “open door immigration” – “let’s invite 1/5 of the refugees and 4/5 of the worst parasites on earth” is what I would describe Merkel’s decision

        • Sideshow Bob


          Children resident here have the right go to school here and their parents, guardian or whatever, are legally bound to make sure they are schooled, IRRESPECTIVE of how many tax contributions have or have not been made by their parents or guardian or whatever. These are NOT related issues. Please get your facts straight before you attempt to hector me.

          The more significant costs in healthcare operation and serious treatment costs, overnight stays in hospitals are FREE under the public system in this country. Try having open heart surgery without health insurance in the US and do the same here and see just how big the bill is in the US compared to here. Immigrants, at least legal ones, as you pointed out, have the same rights as Irish people.

          For my “open door immigration´´ comment I spoke only from my own “de facto´´ experience of the situation in Ireland in the area that I then worked, particularly from 2003-2008 after workers from the Eastern European states came here en masse. That situation still exists, exacerbated by austerity policies afterwards,and I can see it in Ireland still. I certainly didn´t extend my comments to Merkel´s Germany or any EU wide events, although I imagine depending on the situation the comment could well apply there too.

          • Grzegorz Kolodziej


            “Children resident here have the right go to school here”

            But I was not disputing that, I was talking about the Medical Cards.

            “IRRESPECTIVE of how many tax contributions”

            How can children have tax contributions?

            “Try having open heart surgery without health insurance in the US and do the same here and see just how big the bill is in the US compared to here.” – try going to an Irish hospital or a GP without money and Medical Card.

            Btw, would you like to have immigrant kids living here who did not assimilate to the Irish society by not being part of the Irish schooling system?

            When it comes to Polish kids, they usually boost the standards:


            And the Asian kids definitely boost the standards of US universities.

            When it comes to… ehm… well, this is embarrassing:


            But even here there are surprises – I once worked with an extremely smart Nigerian and many people would agree with me that the black Dublin Bus drivers are in general the most polite (many times I have seen a bus escaping an old lady trying to catch it – a situation unthinkable in Poland).

            “the Eastern European states came here en masse. That situation still exists” – so you did not notice that 2/3 of Eastern Europeans have left since the recession? And what does it say about the record of FG/Labour if even Eastern Europeans were leaving Ireland (for example, out of 325,000 Poles only 122 585 were left in 2011)? I mean, how bad was this government if even the so called “cheap labour” was leaving?

            “Please get your facts straight before you attempt to hector me.”

            I am not HECTORING you, Bob. I am sorry if you suffer from the impression this is personal. I just did not like the fact that you start your answers with “rubbish” – I am not a type to be bullied – and that you did not look properly at what I have written about Poland being a netto payer to the EU (so I reiterate it once again what I had written, to which you responded by saying “rubbish” and quoting figures for 2007-2013: “Poland is this year a netto payer to the EU (by a whopping 2bn euro”)).

            Instead of “rubbishing” my comments, you should take a step back and think what the real figures for Ireland are (like I said, wikipedia does not give you the cost of being an EU-member – Open Europe does, and it their report on Britain’s membership, they also considered the 10 new members and calculated that even for 2004-2014 their cost outweighed benefits).

            As you can see, I really cannot put it shorter as there is so many things to explain, even giving you a benefit of a doubt and assuming you are interested in real numbers (for Ireland too).

          • Sideshow Bob

            So, Grzegorz, I am glad to see you are not HECTORING me, at the very least! These replies clearly show that, and a lot more too.

            So, where is this article that you are credited with being the brains behind by David McW can I ask? Could you provide a link to it for me, or give me the title?

            So, Adam, what did I say earlier about headbangers? My point to you seems to have been reinforced, I would think.

          • Grzegorz Kolodziej



            Rather, that I was not credited with.

            This article was in lion’s share based on my comment and my research (by in lion’s share I mean huge chunks freely taken) and I said to David I did not mind that.

            I have an uneasy feeling our exchange focuses too much on me and too little on the actual figures and their interpretation.

            I think what is missing and what is important is this: Ireland has been a netto payer; since 2014 – and particularly this year – poor Poland has been a netto payer, borders are restored, trade is dying (the Baltic Dry Index), there is a diarrhoea of legislation, the Irish were leaving Ireland after 2007, immigrants were leaving (like I said, the number of Poles dropped by 2/3) – so who is actually benefiting from the EU project in its current shape? And how it can be improved.

            I think these are the questions we should address.

            Who was credited for what and who gets how many views – Bob, to me this is irrelevant, really.

            As to the “Open doors” policy, I think this is a misnomer for I think the opposite is the case – there is a negative selection of immigrants coming into Europe (and frankly, Ireland is thankfully perhaps the least affected by that – I am talking about the “Syrian” deluge of course, not about the previous waves).

            The most cheeky, brutal and parasitic ones were let in last year. This is not an “open door” – this a NEGATIVE selection, as opposed to, i.e., the New Zeland-style system. I would call it a positive discrimination.

            I will take your remarks on posting shorter comments on board, but I have noticed that if I do that, I still have to explain lots of things.

            P.S. In terms of volume, Tony posts much more than me (he is the commentator I have probably learned the most, him and Coldblow).

          • Sideshow Bob


            1) You weren´t credited because your thoughts, work or comments weren´t referenced, simple as that. Normal academic rules apply. It reads like any other D McW article, it certainly doesn´t read in any part like something authored by you, if your lengthy comments are anything to go by.

            2) You are very clearly contradicting yourself. Frankly, this is a bit crazy:


            “Not everyone was born to understand economics, but maybe if you were not scrolling right past my missives, your comments would be published in Sunday Business Post too :-)´´



            “Who was credited for what and who gets how many views – Bob, to me this is irrelevant, really.´´

            3) I know well how to look up official stats when the need arises and I have sufficient education to understand them. I deeply resent you insulting me repeatedly and calling me a lazy f****r and insulting Irish people in general above here. It speaks volumes about you. I will not lower myself to that level.

            Now, please leave me alone.

          • Grzegorz Kolodziej

            1. “It reads like any other D McW article, it certainly doesn´t read in any part like something authored by you, if your lengthy comments are anything to go by.”

            “Certainly”, “lengthy” – strong epithets as for someone with such an lazy approach to research like you.

            But sure you have not even read those comments to be entitled to have an opinion on who authored what:


            “German memory is very selective – there is no mention of the 1953 London Debt Agreement in their debates on Greece.”


            “German memory – and that of its Irish supplicants – is very selective. There is no mention of the 1953 London Debt Agreement in their debates on Greece.”


            “I am not surprised, because to remind them that the introduction of the Deutsche Mark in 1948 wiped out most of Germany’s domestic debt”


            “Why doesn’t someone remind Germany that in 1948 the introduction of the Deutsche Mark (backstopped by American capital) wiped out most of Germany’s domestic debt?”


            “Yes, Germans were very good at saving money partly because, well, they are Germans, but partly thanks to restructuring of their debt their debt was less than 20pc of their GDP while the rest of Western Europe in the 1950s struggled with debts of about 200pc of GDP”


            “Why doesn’t someone remind the Germans – and those in Ireland who want to be the best boys in the Teutonic class – that in the 1950s Germany’s debt was less than 20 per cent of their GDP, while much of the rest of western Europe in the 1950s struggled with debts of about 200 per cent of GDP?”


            “Albrecht Ritschl, an economic historian at the London School of Economics, estimated that the total debt forgiveness West Germany received from 1947 to 1953 was more than 280pc of Germany’s 1950 GDP, compared to 200pc of GDP Greece has been pledged in aid since 2010.”


            “Albrecht Ritschl, an economic historian at the London School of Economics, estimated that the total debt forgiveness West Germany received from 1947 to 1953 was more than 280 per cent of Germany’s 1950 GDP. This compares to 100 per cent of GDP that Greece has been pledged in aid since 2010.” – here David missed got that 100pc figure wrote, not noticed that I wrote 200pc.

            And so on, and so forth.

            No feeling so smart now, Bob, do you? I think you should apologise to me.

            2. “You are very clearly contradicting yourself”

            And where exactly is the contradiction? And what do you know about logic anyway?

            3. “and calling me a lazy f****r and insulting Irish people in general above here”

            You have just confirmed you cannot read properly – I called you lazy, because you are – see point one – but I never called you a fucker.

            I do not insult Irish people – most of the Irish readers of that blog have far better understanding of written word than you. Your last comment is an insult to Irish people because it lowers the level of the debate on this blog. I think that YOU feel insulted because I have exposed your arrogance inability to read – and that’s very different from “Irish people” in general; apart from that to think that you have the nerve to speak for all Irish people…

            “It speaks volumes about you” – and who are, a psychologist or rather someone who cannot read properly?

            Now, swallow your vanity and y o u leave me alone – I could stay and trade insults (your first ever comment to me started with “Rubbish”), but I would need to find a worthy opponent.

  13. Adelaide

    Merkel’s bizarre religious meandering explanations for her illegal immigration policy can be distilled into one sound bite: death wish. It is futile rationalising her actions, she is on a quest to atone for past German sins by cleansing Germany of its native atheist sinners by supplanting them with those with true religious vocation. She is a clear and present danger to continental Europe. And the German people will stand idly by because they are too lame, conformist and polite, sure they can’t muster the willpower to procreate for heaven’s sake. This will all end in religious wars. Thankfully for once Ireland’s joke-for-a-functioning-country is an advantage, no migrants are asking for asylum here, they’re not that desperate.

    • Grzegorz Kolodziej

      Jesus, for the first time I have to defend the German people.

      “German people will stand idly by because they are too lame, conformist and polite”

      It’s because they do not have a FREE PRESS. Two main media groups in Germany (Axel Springer Media AG) and Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA are managed by Ms Merkel’s friends and no foreign media are allowed (the Brits have tried).

      They are totally brainwashed.

      On the other hand, if they were not lame and conformist, they would have independent media.

      So maybe you are right.

    • McCawber

      The ironic thing is that her policy may achieve what Hitler failed to do.
      It might take a while but imagine what a Muslim Germany’s approach to the Jewish community. And how would EU foreign policy change in relation to the last bastion of Christianity and their Israeli allies.
      That’s the USA btw.

    • coldblow

      I had the privilege of joining Facebook just in time to see the massive swell of pressure (by Facebook users if not by the rest of us) for letting in the refugees following the photo of the drowned Kurdish child. This was undeniably a prime example of mass hysteria and Merkel was affected by it as much as others of her (extravert) persuasion. Michael D., Joan Burton and others were all on the front page of the paper on the Saturday morning and this was followed by weirdly similar op-eds by Eoghan Harris and Matt Cooper saying that on some occasions the heart should rule the head (I kept them as cuttings). The refugees at that Hungarian (?) railway station were also caught up in the very same hysteria (remember the refugee who threw himself, theatrically, onto the (empty) railway line) and the over crowded carriages were crammed with roaring hysteria. The welcoming crowds at Munich Station had also caught the bug but excitable commentators never pondered the obvious question: if the German people was unanimous where were all the rest? Meanwhile Lucinda was running around with glassy eyes and a permanent horizontal crease of concern etched into her attractive forehead.

  14. McCawber

    I’ve explained racism before.
    It is merely and quite simply a protective reflex.
    Every race is as equally racist as the next.
    There are no exceptions.
    Racism isn’t a class thing.
    It’s quite simply the case that the poorer classes are the first ones to feel the competition from the invading workforce.
    The Germans acted unilaterally in allowing so many migrants (refugees is very debatable).
    The other countries who are now expected to suffer as a result are quite right to push back.
    The Germans acted in haste and the rest of us should not be the ones to have to repent at leisure.

  15. mishco

    I too love foreign accents, especially sexy French or Korean ones. My own particular little prejudice is against certain idio(t)lects like that of a certain lady just reelected by the skin of her teeth. I also can’t stand foreign names I can’t spell like (cut and paste) Grzegorz Kolodziej. I do occasionally fear that someone like GK might usurp the job of our host, but then I quickly realize that there are enough people who think like DMcW on this blog to prevent this happening, and anyway I’m sure they both employ nannies.

    I’ve been an emigrant (and therefore someone else’s immigrant) for nigh on 50 years, and I hope this has taught me a certain degree of tolerance, just as most people have tolerated me and my Irish accent.

    Of course if I’d had to leave for the reasons Syrians are leaving their country, and been teated as they are being treated, I might not have ended up being quite so liberal-minded. As always, it’s one rule for us, and another for the downtrodden, be they white, black, yellow, red or polka-dot.

    • Grzegorz Kolodziej

      You are not the only one, mishco. My friend’s sister Siobhán had emigrated to England in the 50s and was once called Sindbad – why the Irish have so ridiculous names lol ;-?).

      Btw, mishco is a Polish name, did you know that?

    • Grzegorz Kolodziej

      You know, most Irish I had been working with actually appreciated that I did not give them the English version of my name (which in both languages comes from the Greek Gr?gorios meaning “watchful, alert”, because they feel I treat them as adults and not as, like bewildered Mr Marian Kowalki said, “babies in the woods”, who “should not have been given rights to own guns because they would only hurt themselves”); furthermore, you would be surprised how the smart Irish coffee shop attendants sometimes get it almost immediately (and I once had a girlfriend from Derry Bogside who never got it and preferred to refer to me as the “stranger” ;-).

      Of course, it is different in quick inter-ractions – but surely less difficult than with Bláthnaid Ní Chofaig, unpronounceable for any non-Irish English speaker (btw, I think that having unpronounceable Irish names is even stronger sign of national identity than having a Hiberno-English accent)?

      Let’s settle my name once and for all:


  16. Adelaide

    I am right, you are wrong, let’s leave it that mature resolution.

    I visit Munich regularly and genuinely like the German people, but I would also add that they are naïve. For a people who travel a lot they have little or no knowledge of other European societies, the rest of Europe is just like Germany and that’s that.

    Merkel is their greatest enemy, she is a self-loather and despises the German people for being the grandchildren of Nazis, this is what the unhinged woman said but the Germans turn a deaf ear.

  17. coldblow

    I don’t like hearing English spoken with a foreign accent. I have an obsession with languages and would much prefer hearing them speaking their own native language. This doesn’t last though as the second generation don’t learn it well. So much for cultural enrichment.

    I was going to pass on a few insights from Ed West’s (a son of Mary Kenny’s) book the (I think) Diversity Delusion but I haven’t the time. One of them was about the benefits of social cohesion: when you get serious levels of immigration trust breaks down and people are unwilling to fund social welfare measures. I think in US cities where there is a ‘vibrant’ racial and cultural mix trust levels are low and welfare meagre, but it is the opposite in other places where this is not the case. I think he makes the observation that the link between Swedish social solidarity (and cultural identity) is misunderstood: the social solidarity led to the welfare state and not the other way round. He also provides evidence that the economic arguments for immigration are not true. Many who would otherwise oppose mass immigration are reluctantly swayed by them. He also debunks the widespread notion that England is a mongrel nation: the racial make-up of England changed very little indeed over the centuries and mass immigration is a comparatively very recent thing. It’s a very interesting book and there are many insights in it that had never occurred to me before. And of course it discusses the phenomenon whereby favourable views about immigration became associated with education and urbanity.

    I will also repeat his observation that the only British party whose membership (as opposed to leadership) favoured immigration has been the tiny Green Party (who made me vote Labour the other day just to make sure they finished rock bottom). So a Green Party customer in a trendy restaurant would be concerned about the distance the ingredients have travelled while the BNP customer would be more concerned about how far the waiter has.

    This stuff about the hard wiring of brains strikes me as very speculative and wholly unconvincing. I’m not at all persuaded by scientific materialism (the current orthodoxy) which tries to explain everything by DNA, genes and brains. I was always sceptical but Sheldrake’s Science Delusion is very enlightening. It’s all part of a world view which includes pc, global warming and libertinism. It is argued that scientific materialism may well be creaking to an end as it has failed to explain anything new about the world for decades now.

    One thing I will say before I finish is that anti-racism and pro-immigration is the central value in the odd, self-contradictory mish-mash that is pc. Remember it was David appeared on the Late Late to sell the move to admit large(r) numbers of refugees. The idea that we should have a mature discussion as a nation is laughable. Whenever has this happened in Ireland (or anywhere else in recent years, for that matter)?

    Brighton 4 Leeds 0 at the moment. If I were a hippy I’d call that karma. (We wanted them to do a job on Brighton but they have let us down.)

  18. mike flannelly

    “Although you wouldn’t know it from listening to the election debates, migration is one of the key issues for this society and Europe. It would be a good thing if we began to discuss it openly, and most critically, when the discussion brings us into uncomfortable territory.”


    We dont discuss our failed health system and the damage caused by the health care unions. ALL politicians call for lots more nurses despite having 50% more nurses than the UK.

    We dont discuss why failed Irish bankers are NOT restructuring the very high debt ratio mortgages of 2004 to 2009. After seven years are families refused sustainable long term interest only solutions that would prevent homelessness or major financial losses?

    We dont discuss pension reform and fairness for all Irish citizens as per the april 2013 oecd report.

    We mistake financial anxiety about future lack of resourses as racism and discrimination.

    Why is it that we discuss NONE of Irelands core problems? They are reported but never discussed. Is it a very low standard of journalism?

    Do we need outside journalists to discuss OUR core problems like in the film spotlight?

    Are Irelands journalists part of the system and the problems ?

    • StephenKenny

      “Are Irelands journalists part of the system and the problems ?”
      I think that over the past 25 or so years, the national media in most European countries have become part of the political & corporate establishment, to a very large extent.
      They seem to see their role not only as pushing the ever more intrusive political, economic, and social policies of the political and corporate establishment, but also of belittling, smothering, and criminalising any opposition.

      This obsessive ‘ends justifying the means’ approach has a lot of consequences, which are generally damaging.

      Truth was the first casualty, and as an underlying goal it has vanished almost without trace in most countries, being replaced by that stressful state of knowing that what you believe you cannot ever say. So it leads to a sort of loneliness, confusion, and eventually all-on cognitive dissonance, where the whole world seems to have gone completely mad, and you feel like you’re alone in seeing it. Things that are clearly mad
      are lauded and treated as perfectly sensible.

      Without an effective 4th estate, social cohesion slowly disintegrates, leaving millions of individuals looking around for any sort of group to belong to. The various media get ever more determined to intervene, causing increasingly randomness and poor decision making, with all it’s consequences, and the whole sad thing spirals away.

      • coldblow

        You beat me to it Stephen.

        The media are the main problem as far as I can see.

        I have been looking at paedophile ring witch hunts over the past three years or so and they are an excellent barometer of the health of the press. The prognosis is poor.


        Part 2 is also available.

        This weekend, following a Facebook dispute with my sister, I finally got round to the daddy of them all, the Jimmy Savile evil-personified, one. I expected to find the usual mix of exaggeration and fantasy, all reported as fact by a useless media. So far I haven’t been disappointed.

    • coldblow

      Spotlight. I haven’t seen it but I get the drift: fearless Boston Globe reporters expose massive abuse scandal etc. The link in my post just above (?) (Richard Webster – Flat Earth News and the Jersey Child Abuse Scandal (Part 1)) applies to this scandal also. It isn’t easy getting hard facts about it on-line but all signs are that it is another witch hunt.

      The Fr Paul Shanley case has been investigated and it is central to the Boston scandal.



      The point I am making is that the media make these things far worse than they already are. The investigative journalists are the most dangerous.

  19. coldblow

    From Ed West’s The Diversity Illusion

    “Opposition to immigration also came to be associated with poverty and failure. In the words of Tim Finch head of migration for the Institute for Public Policy Research, people who thought mass immigration ‘progressive’ had a tendency ‘to characterise our opponents as nasty, stupid and backward. By so doing, we give ourselves license [sic] to either patronise or ignore them.’ The media characterised opposition to newcomers as largely coming from the poor and/ or poorly educate, and partly out of embarrassment at being associated with such social deviants, intelligent people who opposed immigration for perfectly legitimate reasons kept quiet…

    ‘In Tom Wolfe’s The Bonfire of the Vanities a New York couple with an inferiority complex towards their well-spoken British nanny are relieved when she makes a racist outburst. ‘Kramer and his wife looked at each other. He could tell she was thinking the same thing he was. “Thank God in heaven! What a relief! They could let their breaths out now. Miss Efficiency was a bigot. These days the thing about bigotry was, it was undignified. It was a sign of Low Rent origins, or inferior social status, of poor taste. So they were the superiors of their English baby nurse, after all.”…

    ‘… No undergraduate ever reduced his chances with the opposite sex by condemning racism. Politics is highly social, which is why, once a stance becomes seen as unattractive, however logical its arguments, socially skilled men will begin to abandon it until it becomes associated with misfits and weirdos…

    ‘Anti-racist attitudes are the modern human equivalent of the peacock’s tail. In contrast, racism is very unattractive, which is why the vast majority of internet daters who only date members of their own race (a very large proportion) advertise a willingness to see anyone. Personal diveristy, in friendship circles, also suggests other qualities; cosmopolitanism and tolerance are signals of social success, and having friends from various different backgrounds suggests not only general popularity but also that people of other races are able to overcome their fear or hostility in your special case. And having the right attitudes to race, and being aware of the correct current terminology also suggests contemporariness, a highly attractive quality. [myself I go more for contrariness]

    ‘Cultural self-denigration, towards British patriotism or Western civilisation in general, is a high-status signifier, since such attitudes are taught at universities and in higher cultural circles. Roger Scruton called such self-hate ‘oikophobia’, from the Greek for home and describes it as ‘a stage through which the adolescent mind normally passes’ but one in which ‘intellectuals especially tend to become arrested’. Since the poor, the weak and the most socially inadequate rely on their attachments to institutions, disrespect for those social institutions – the monarchy, the Church, the nation – becomes a sign of high status… [Hitchens and Waters have argued that rebellion by the young was always there (I disagree) but that the difference in the past was that they grew up in the end.]

    ‘Opposition to mass immigration also became associated with neo-Fascism and racial supremacists. Some opponents of immigration are of course white supremacists, but most are not, and when the centre-Right gave up on the debate, the more racist elements, those who cared the most, came to the forefront.’ Another problem is what you mean by ‘educated’ these days. I think ordinary people who hadn’t even gone to university a couple of generations ago were quite possibly intellectual colossi compared with what is on offer today.

    I disagree with much of this, because his explanations don’t take account of extraversion. For example ‘socially skilled men’ should read ‘extravert men’, who will always follow the crowd to a greater or lesser degree.

    In general those in favour of mass immigration see the problem as being the fears of the uneducated. This misses the point entirely. They aren’t afraid of it but think it is wrong, unnecessary and stupid. The extravert mind finds it hard to escape cliches and obvious reasons of self-interest, such as falling wages. They try to put themselves in their opponents’ shoes and this si the best they can do. This mindset cannot handle the question ‘why’. ‘What does it matter ‘why?’!’ they say. ‘This is simply how life is.’ You can see how scientific materialism (‘the brain evolved to deal with threats and competition for scarce resources yada yada’) fits into it. The extravert (as Jung himself wrote, though he may have been referring specifically to the feeling-predominant ones (they are all like that)) doesn’t or can’t believe in what he doesn’t see.

    • Grzegorz Kolodziej

      Maybe one day some sponsor will order me to translate a book written by a philosophy and logic Professor Boguslaw Wolniewicz, called “Xenophoby and Community”, about the positive value of xenophobia ;-)

  20. Wills

    The mass movement of peoples from Eastern Europe and further afield into Europe and British Isles it must be organised. I mean you can’t have masses of people arriving from foreign lands and receiving welfare, housing and medical care while the indigenous population are not all being cared for. To debate anything else about this before this core reality is addressed is for the birds.

    • Pedro Nunez

      +1, and free travel vaccines and the most expensive antimalarial drugs for trips back home (paid for by the taxpayer no doubt) , whilst we have thousands on the housing lists and hundreds sleeping rough in our capital and hundreds of thousands young Irish have left to avoid being a burden on the state as we were told was our ‘patriotic duty’ to do in the 1980s.

      Merkel’s Europe is nuts, why is it only the UK saying that ‘the emperor is wearing no clothes’?

  21. goldbug








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