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Dyspeptic mutterings

First it was the French Jews, then the Dutch, then the Germans, all people with fertility rates well in the red, who were reported to be leaving their homelands. Now it seems it’s the British too: Almost one in 10 British citizens living overseas. In the meantime the flow of Third World immigrants into the West goes on faster than ever: 1 in 7 Mexican workers employed in the U.S.

Even those skeptical of statistical alarmism seem convinced something major is going on. Globalization is real, it’s supported by any number of technical factors, and our rulers all want it, so it looks very much as if we’re going to get it.

What will it mean? Our political life is utterly trivial today, and bureaucratic experts live in their own artificial thought-world, so there’s no reason to think anything so big and complicated will be managed intelligently. Presumably, stuff will just happen.

For my own part when I think of the future I think of something that combines the qualities of India and Brazil with those of the European Union, only more so—a huge, ramshackle, incoherent, radically unequal and increasingly violent society ruled by meddling, politically correct, utterly unresponsive and throughly inefficient and corrupt bureaucrats. And that’s the optimistic view, that assumes that existing structures continue to operate after a fashion and do not collapse into something really horrible.

Maybe that just shows that I’m fearful and resist change. On the other hand, maybe some such thought is the reason young people in developed countries are so depressed. Their parents tried to create a sort of Lubberland in which everything is comfortable and taken care of, and taught them that was all that mattered in life. It seems obvious that’s not how things are going to be. So why not be depressed?

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