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Refugees or Migrants: Hate in the “Next Europe”

Joseph Warren

Europe is struggling. Economics, overall, and “Globalized Indifference” (Pope Francis’ term) have all steadily eroded the commonality that once was the impetus behind the Union: The same thinking that brought us together here in the US nearing 250 years ago. Now, add the consequent damage likely to occur as a result of the incredible influx of Migrants (or Refugees, if you prefer) and the simmering strife becomes far more perceivable and real.

To address the changing world in which Europe exists, academicians and others have been invited to participate in a gathering of ideas termed, Next Europe.

Europeans generally see the future from a linear perspective with time unfolding before them and each second ticking away means that they must “progress” to a different state of being which, apparently to them, precludes reversion: Many do not want to abandon the Union and simply revert to the way things were, seeing that as a devolutionary step.

I have several observations regarding that inflexibility some of which I think are conclusions predicated on seeming truncations in logic, because as a non-European I am not constrained by the subjective perspective of what constitutes "forward movement" or progress.

As an example, according to the information I have been provided many of those involved apparently see the disintegration of the EU as regressive (their words), while the opposite might be the case: acknowledging the inability of a varied and culturally extremely diverse people to come together for the common good, as it were; the same as we are experiencing today here in the United States but to them to a much greater degree owing to the far greater EU levels of disparity in languages, ethics, history itself, immersion in personal faith as a basis for day-to-day behaviors, and so on. 

My premise, based on what I have seen, is that Europe, like the universe itself and all things within the universe, is suffering from a state of entropy that is exacerbating the differences (metaphorically, spatially) bringing on a greater lack of cohesiveness and commonality.


Entropy is the state of being of all things - constantly moving toward a greater dispersion of the very elements of the universe, the planets, and any life forms populating them. To not acknowledge this as the fundamental condition affecting all things and their progress toward an ultimate end is a very grave mistake. 

Look again at us: the United States is highly factionalized, more so than at anytime before in history. We labor day-to-day to promulgate even the slightest change of any consequence, and our only successes are attributable to the (passive? unregarded?) acquiescence of an unaware public: a public that is becoming more and more diverse in many ways every day - dispersing further within the sphere that is our socio-geographic confines like molecules in an expanding balloon. Add to that the extreme sense of disgust overall with the systemic dysfunctions alive in American politics today, and one can appreciate the level of entropic disarray we are dealing with.

People need to find their commonality. In the absence of a central faith where a belief is shared amongst the whole (i.e. Religion or State (Marx), each one of us needs to feel - to believe - that we are bound to someone or something else. Attempting to force that sense of belonging through contrived unions of nation-states, as in the European Union, plainly does not work. It would be nice if it did. 

Take Einstein, as an example. He wished, more than anything, that the bulk of humanity could peacefully come together and be overseen by a collective body of global government whereby all disputes might be resolved, and through this means put an end to the deplorable affliction of war. Plainly, that is not something that can happen unless and until the very fabric of what constitutes humanity changes so vastly - genetically, I think - that we are able to abandon ourselves for the greater good. It is also contraindicative to the definition of, Human.

We have not evolved to that state, nor are we likely to given present trends, and most importantly, nor is it consistent with the way things work, in the long term. It is a short-term ideology made possible by an anamolic event: War, Famine, or some other condition that temporarily causes us to abandon some part of our individuality to a greater effort. Always temporary.

So, what works? There is nothing regressive about saying, "Well, that didn't work; let's go back to the way things were..." One more Einstein example: intellectual flexibility to him was the ability to change one's mind, and to accept what previously had been thought of as wrong, based on new data.

Entropy will continue to drive Europe toward abandonment of her union, because our belief of what constitutes societal evolution is obviously not the same as what nature sees as progressive. The only thinker I can recall who sort-of got it right - to a slightly different degree - was Marx.

As an added thought, perhaps through the dis-integration of the EU Europeans may experience a heightened sense of commonality having, for a few years at least, shared a somewhat unified existence and currency. Perhaps through this they may lend themselves more positively to seeking solutions to issues that are common to former member countries.

Also, although from a humanitarian perspective the influx and acceptance of Migrants displaced as a result of various violent outbreaks – civil wars – in the Middle East is commendable, in the long-term it will surely result in accelerated entropy. Unfortunately, there is little that one can do about that.


Today Europe is a ship not under command: She is without a clearly defined master, from a figurative perspective – one to whom all hands may look for guidance, leadership, and a mutually enjoyed trust and confidence.

Foremost today, I have thought much about the migrant issue and how that will immediately and in the longer-term exacerbate Europe’s present lack of direction and stasis.

While no one can tell how well Europe will absorb the hundreds of thousands (millions?) of migrants finding their way to member countries, there are a few generalities one may safely make:

* Hate Crimes will likely increase, particularly in member countries such as Germany and others where national identity will be challenged by the immediate “shock” of adding so many people of dissimilar characteristics. This is immediately apparent, as of this writing as the BBC reports on a few episodes of public response to those migrants who have recently found new homes in Germany and elsewhere.

* Member countries will promulgate more laws in an effort to legislate tolerance, always a sure sign of societal failure and never successful.

* Crime rates overall will rise – not attributable purely to any criminal inclinations of some percentage of those who are migrating, but to the hardships they will likely experience leaving many resigned to cross the line to support their families through whatever means necessary.

* Financially all EU member countries will be required to support the migrant influx leading to an (hopeful) eventual stabilization. In the interim, it will be a further stress on those countries that currently are still struggling to emerge from the earlier collapse. For Germany, although an economic powerhouse, either the real or perceived inability to support the bulk of Europe will likely manifest itself in displays of social unrest, and could signal the quickened demise of Angela Merkel, which in my opinion, would be a terrible loss. Instead, someone will grab the helm who is likely to be less “tolerant” and more inclined to a nationalist perspective. Like Germany in 1930s, Argentina during Peron, and America during George W. Bush, intolerance will emerge with, perhaps, serious consequences to the world.

* Russia will likely continue to be vilified for fortifying Assad and that could, eventually, lead to a terrible escalation in tensions between Russia and the West: We’re already seeing innumerable breaks with reality (my opinion) and the Western Press is working hard to demonize Putin at every step. Localized conflict or global catastrophe? Either will likely come to pass.

Overall, it is admittedly a terrible mess and one not easily dealt with by those who are migrating to escape persecution or for economic reasons, or for those who are expected to welcome and (temporarily) support Europe’s new migrant influx.

One of the things I like about Angela Merkel is her ability to encapsulate a thought simply and elegantly. In the past she has referred to similar scenarios they now face as a “Scheiße Sturm” or, as we call it, Shitstorm. And, truly, it is.

How much will splash back off the fan onto us – although I think we, America, ought to be required to spoon up a big helping - is to be seen.