Monday, June 26, 2006


From Brussels Journal, a long Roger Scruton essay on multiculturalism.

A few highlights :

"Someone who is in a state of denial regarding his mortal illness, his wife’s infidelity or his child’s delinquency will turn angrily on the one who refers to the forbidden truth. Likewise, a political culture that is in denial about a serious social problem will condemn those who seek to discuss it, and try its best to silence them. For a long time now the European political class has been in denial about the problems posed by the large-scale immigration of people who do not enter into our European way of life. It has turned angrily on those who have warned against the disruption that might follow, or who have affirmed the right of indigenous communities to refuse admission to people who cannot or will not assimilate. And one of the weapons that the √©lite has used, in order to ensure that it is never troubled by the truths that it denies, is to accuse those who wish to discuss the problem of ‘racism and xenophobia’. People of my generation have been brought up in fear of this charge, just as the people of Salem were brought up in the fear of being denounced as witches. We saw what happened to Enoch Powell, as a result of a public speech that warned against the dangers. I don’t say that Powell’s speech, in which he referred to ‘the river Tiber foaming with much blood’, was wise or helpful. On the contrary, it was all too easy to accuse him of scaremongering, and his quotation from the Cumean Sybil in Aeneid Bk VI – which of course nobody recognized – was instantly re-written as ‘rivers of blood’, and he himself dismissed as a dangerous madman. That was virtually the last time that a British politician dared to warn against the effect of large-scale immigration. Since then an uneasy silence has prevailed at the political level, while discussion at every other level has been hampered by the periodic show-trials of those judged to be guilty of ‘racism’ – for example, because they have argued that immigrant communities must integrate, and that separatism is intrinsically dangerous: the position adopted by The Salisbury Review under my editorship, and which was the cause of my own castigation.

By denying a problem you prevent its discussion, until discussion is too late."

"Every society depends on an experience of membership: a sense of who ‘we’ are, why we belong together, and what we share. This experience is pre-political: it precedes all political institutions, and provides our reason for accepting them. It unites left and right, blue-collar and white-collar, man and woman, parent and child. To threaten this ‘first-person plural’ is to open the way to atomisation, as people cease to recognize any general duty to their neighbours, and set out to pillage the accumulated resources while they can. Without membership we risk a new ‘tragedy of the commons’, as our inherited social assets are seized for present use."

"Now I do not doubt that there is such a thing as racism, that it has been immensely destructive and that our governments are right to look for methods to prevent its expression. Racially motivated crime carries an added penalty in English law, and incitement to racial violence is regarded as a serious offence. However, the adoption of such provisions should not blind us to the many double standards that haunt discussion of this issue.

First, the double standard over ‘racism’: a charge constantly levelled against innocent members of the indigenous majority, and almost never levelled against guilty members of immigrant minorities..."

"... It is in the light of these double standards that the charge of ‘racism and xenophobia’ should be assessed. It is a charge almost invariably levelled at members of the indigenous communities of Europe, and in particular against those at the bottom of the social scale, for whom mass immigration is a cost that they have not been schooled (and through no fault of their own) to bear. It is levelled too at political parties that attempt to represent those people, and who promise them some relief from a problem that no other party seems willing to address."

RTWT. For a long time the Left have viewed immigrants as useful allies in the culture war, without troubling too much about the world-view or culture of the arrivals. Wouldn't they always vote Labour ? Just so did the Kentish king Vortigern view his mercenaries Hengest and Horsa fifteen hundred years ago. They turned out to have ideas and ambitions of their own.


Anonymous said...

Did Vortigern think Hengist and Horsa would always vote Labour?

Guardian apostate said...

Thanks for bringing this to my attention. It was particularly pertinent as I recently wrote to my MP (Labour) highlighting many of the double standards and hypocracies Roger Scruton talks about. Despite also including many questions the reply I had merely dismissed them all and likened my views to Enoch Powells (I must add that there wasn't anything 'racist' about my email but it did touch on the many areas where multiculturism is so obviously failing). Yet another example of the liberal left's failure to address or debate any concerns about immigration and to attempt to smear anyone who tries to start a debate with the racist label.

Laban said...

anonymous - Vortigern certainly did. His "New Britons" party celebrated diversity, and after several masscres by Saxons and Jutes issued an edict againt 'Saxophobia', a distressing affliction of the Britons. 'Thor is a god of peace', quoth he, just before being decapitated.

Not In My Backyard said...

Enoch powell didnt say anything racist either

Rick said...

The best book to read is by Max Frisch - it sells in the Us as "The Firebugs" but we know it as

"Biederman und die Brandstifter"

it describes perfectly how the European political elite has prepared their home to burn