Europe as a new continent, Africa incrementum

David Miliband, the man who might have become Prime Minister seven years ago — had he struck when the iron was hot — has now come out with a supposedly radical plan to solve the refugee problem in Europe.

Let us note that he chooses to call it a refugee problem. Most call it an immigration problem with only a fraction of the travellers being genuine war-torn refugees. It is quite clear that most are economic migrants. There is nothing unworthy about economic migration, of course. It has happened throughout history. But mis-describing the problem causes the economics at the receiving end to be overlooked. Rightly or wrongly, it is the job fears of the indigenous people of Europe that is the root of the problem.

Timing his proposal for the World Humanitarian Summit to be held in Istanbul a few days away Miliband is only repeating what Angela Merkel said a few months ago — that Europe could easily accommodate at least a million immigrants right now. But this would be the least of it. Once accommodated, one million would be followed by ten million from Africa, and then ten million would be followed by one hundred million.  And then more.  Europe would become a new continental species, Africa incrementum.

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