Tag Archives: migration

What is the problem with economic migration?

For a number of years now, migration has been one of the most prominent topics in the media – with local peaks in some countries, often caused by upcoming elections, as it has become quite obvious that it is a topic that has the ability to move voters, in one way or the other. In the Western (a.k.a. ‘developed’ or even ‘civilized’) countries, generally speaking a clear majority of the population agrees that, in the context of the migration which is covered so abundantly in the media, refugees fleeing for war should be allowed to migrate to those countries for humanitarian reasons.

But if it comes to migration for economic reasons, the willingness to allow access to the territory is dramatically lower – even amongst large parts of the population that would never even consider voting for extreme right and/or populist parties, traditionally the loudest anti-migration voices. I am wondering why this is the case. As I see it, large scale economic migration has existed for centuries without outbursts of Western protest, so what is causing this change of attitude? Perhaps I should attempt to figure out what is different now from the way it was happening before…

Let’s try breaking it down into separate elements, by looking at factors such as the areas that have been source and destination, the objects migrating, the consideration of who took the decision, the beneficiaries of the outcome, etc. Continue reading

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When do you stop being an immigrant?

20999913120_8f3f8b117c_kThese last few weeks, refugees from war zones like Syria have been headline news around the clock in just about every single news bulletin. On their journey towards Europe, they encounter both very positive and very negative reactions from the local population of whichever area they happen to be passing by (or got stuck in) that day.

The locals reacting negatively are pointing out that a number of the refugees are not on the run because of a dangerous situation in their home town, but Continue reading

How sure are you about your nationality?

Large sections of books describing human history are essentially lists of wars, conflicts and discussions of one group of people against another. In a number of cases the reason why both groups have some of their members either arguing with one another or end up mass murdering each other is connected to a concept usually referred to as nationality or nationalism (unsatiable hunger for natural resources and religion obviously being the other 2 in the top 3 of reasons). Continue reading