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If you see jobs as a limited pool, then immigration increases competition for them. If you see a certain unemployment as a policy choice upheld by the central bank, those with a weak position should consider if it would not be good to get someone weaker then them in the mix. Finland also has unemployment, but lacking proper immigrants (except a few somalis) most of them are palest white. But soc-dems can not say that, it would break the illusion that they will bring jobs after the election.

Otherwise you can view labor as a resource, consider the capitalist economic system as an enemy and want the workers of the world to unite. But that is so 20th century.

All in all, I would say that the soc-dems lack of politics on immigration is due to a general lack of economic vision. I think they should start to fight the BNPs and FNs by actually challenging them, building organization in those strongholds that are situated within worker neighborhoods, but then they would need some vision, some narrative, some ideas (other then "we are less bad then the conservative/christ-dem").

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by A swedish kind of death on Fri Apr 2nd, 2010 at 04:09:52 PM EST
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A swedish kind of death:
If you see jobs as a limited pool, then immigration increases competition for them.

An argument ive always seen as dubious at best.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Apr 2nd, 2010 at 07:41:54 PM EST
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SocDems have a general economic vision, have had one for the past generation. It's called "Third Way," and it's basically neo-liberalism with sheep's clothing, usually hiding out in mainstream left parties, often times dominating them until they are run into the ground (I note in passing the Social Dems in both Germany and the Netherlands are at or near record lows in the polls, unsurprisingly as they have turned their backs on the people they are supposed to represent).

They are run into the ground because they have an economic vision, one which has little or nothing to offer to working class people, unless you mean stagnating wages, higher precarity of employment in exchange for more "flexibility" (ie work harder for lower pay) and lower levels of social insurance (diminished unemployment insurance, shrinking pensions, delayed retirement dates, wage concessions and so forth).

It is against this backdrop that you expect your SocDems, liberals in the main, to speak to working class people about their fears of...what? Unemployment, inability to provide for their families, the feeling of worthlessness coming from long-term joblessness, the attendant ills (alcoholism, anti-social behavior, criminality) which come from being excluded. And, when excluded in one's own country, all the while waves of immigration, into one's own working class neighborhoods no less, people with different customs sometimes hostile to their own, well, I think you know what comes next...and I really don't think, after the past generation of SocDem dithering and abandonment of the working class, that your lot have much to offer to this particular class.

Now, you may view labor as something other than a resource, and consider the market as the be all and end all of how the worth of a man or a woman is established, and think that such a market, with your SocDem's guiding hand softening the blow, will be delivering jobs and prosperity to one and all, there will be no rising inequality, there will be a job and a pension for young and old. But, we both know this is a fantasy, as the record generally shows. A fantasy which is, yes indeed, so very 20th century.

A livelihood is a right, a worker able to respect himself or herself after a day's work, and provide for his or her family...that's a right too. When this right is recognized, you'll get somewhere with those who are supposed to be your core voters. But, those of us with families, those of us who indeed have gone through a fair bit of joblessness, know better than to trust your lot with our futures. It's a generation now and counting of sell-outs, broken promises, greater inequality, greater joblessness, less rights in the workplace, and lower wages. And, all across the continent, you are just as liable to see Social Democracy delivering this result as you are to see the Right.

And meanwhile, the immigration continues. Ostensibly to fill jobs that no European will take. Unless of course it paid at the prevailing, market wage which would have obtained were it not for the immigration. And, just as inexorably, an EU-based agro-alimentary multinational dumps low-cost food into Africa, undercutting local farmers who eventually sell out to...the same agro-alimentary concerns...and trek north for jobs, to feed the families they used to feed with income from their farms. And the wealthy get rich as they are coming, and the wealthy get rich as they are going, and working people on both continents are getting screwed. (And if you get this parable, that's what was meant, ultimately, by the "workers of the word unite" phrase you deride, I've just updated it for the new, inter-continental version of the phenomenon already in effect in the mid-19th century in continental Europe.)

Meanwhile, your guys are still trying to buy a clue, which is normal...in your tops-down party organizations, as a rule you are not working class, you do not know precarity, stagnating income reducing one's child's prospects is not a problem you deal with, housing and personal security are not concerns....


The Hun is always either at your throat or at your feet. Winston Churchill

by r------ on Sat Apr 3rd, 2010 at 04:37:58 PM EST
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