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The Future of Europe
Tomorrow Belongs To… Who?

The far-right victories in Germany was powered by the votes of discontented youths, who abandoned the center-left as well as center right in droves. The Times of London reports:

In a worrying trend for the established parties, Alternative for Germany (AfD) was the top choice of voters aged between 18 and 44 in the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt, where the party won one in four votes to transform the political landscape.[..]

By far the biggest group of AfD voters were those who had never voted before, the analysis showed. They believed politicians were liars and that voting would make no difference; a common theme among the young male population of Saxony-Anhalt, which has the third-highest unemployment rate of all 16 German states.[..]

AfD was chosen by 26 per cent of votes aged 18 to 24 in Saxony-Anhalt, compared with 16 per cent for the CDU and 11 per cent for both the Greens and SPD. For those aged 25 to 44 it was a similar story, with 29 per cent choosing the AfD against 23 per cent for the CDU and 9 per cent for SPD. The only age group which stuck with Mrs Merkel’s party was the over-60s — 35 per cent voted CDU and 18 per cent AfD.

This should make all of Europe sit up and take notice: Europe has a lot of unemployed young people (France and Italy: 25% and 40% youth unemployment respectively). If they turn to the far-right to deal with their problems, the discontented youth population would provide a massive reservoir of energy for extremist parties.

We’re not there yet, or anything like it, but it’s worth remembering what lies down the end of this road: the (literal) foot soldiers of the fascist movements of the 20s and 30s were discontented youths convinced that a new, post-democratic politics, with a heavy emphasis on solidarity, was the wave of the future. Reading the statistics, we couldn’t help but think of Cabaret:

The AfD aren’t the Nazis, and they aren’t overrunning Germany—yet. But if the crumbling liberal center of European politics wants to stave off an increasingly menacing series of right-wing threats, it will need to do the hard work to find answers for Europe’s struggling youth, and convince them of what was until recently blithely assumed: that the future still belongs to liberalism.

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  • Tom

    Yeah, that’s not going to happen. If the “center” in Europe keeps acting like it has been, this is only going to get worse.
    I will admit to some tasty, tasty schadenfreude.

  • Beauceron

    The future of Europe belongs to Islam. That was likely true in 2014. The events of 2015 only solidified it.

    German youth will have the same choices many other European youth will have to face due to the reckless, ignorant actions of their elites: they can convert, they can move, they can live as dhimmis, or they can die.

    • Jim__L

      I wouldn’t count them out just yet. The migrant crisis has brought things into focus in a way they haven’t been before.

      We’re in for interesting times.

      • bashg

        With the political and constabulary blessing of the noble migrants raping of local talent, it should be very interesting indeed.

    • Tom

      You forgot one option.
      They can fight.

      • f1b0nacc1

        These are EUnicks, don’t be silly. They will queue up for their own extermination

        • Tom

          Oh, the Eurocrats and the Greens will, for certain. PEGIDA, AfD, and others will not.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Perhaps, but the EUnicks and the Greens seem them as the real enemy, and will waste whatever resources they still control weakening them first.

          • Tom

            They will–however, the newcomers are still fewer in number than AfD and PEGIDA, and will remain so for the foreseeable future.
            Also, the Eurocrats and Greens will be much closer to the newcomers, and will bear the initial brunt of any hostile action.

  • Boritz

    Your belief that preserving this center so-called is a solution and a near sacred one at that is pure affect.

  • CapitalHawk

    The author refers to Alternative for Germany as a “far-right” political party, compares them to Nazis repeatedly, and says they aren’t Nazis “yet”. Obviously leaving the impression that they are almost Nazis. I don’t live in Germany, so I can’t tell you all of the political positions of AfD, but based on some reading on the internet, these are their main positions:

    1. End or at least significantly curtail immigration into Germany.
    2. Leave the Euro.
    3. Leave the European Union (maybe).
    4. End bail outs for Greece.
    5. Have more direct democracy (Swiss style voting).
    6. Opposition to gay marriage.

    This is what the author apparently thinks is virtually equivalent to Nazis. Methinks the author doesn’t have a clue as to what Nazism was all about.

    • Jim__L

      Fascinating. For #6, do they explicitly draw a connection between the erosion of traditional values / marriage and the erosion of German fertility rates? An argument could be made for a compelling national interest, there.

      The arc of history can apparently potentially correct itself after bending in a destructive direction.

      • CapitalHawk

        Well, I went to the AfD website and ran their platform positions through Google Translate. What I said above is roughly accurate. They also say that they fully support David Cameron and his efforts to streamline the EU bureaucracy. So, obviously David Cameron is a Nazi.

        Anyway, as to the gay marriage issue, this is what they actually say on their website (as translated to English by Google):

        “Germany has too few children. Pensions and health care are therefore shaky. Germany must child- and family-friendly be. We stand for the protection of the family as a fundamental unit of society. A more cohesive promotion of families is an investment in our common future and essential part of the contract between the generations.”

        This is what they say about immigration:

        “We call for a review of immigration law. Germany needs qualified and willing to integrate immigration. We call for an immigration law to the Canadian model. A disorderly immigration into our social systems must necessarily be prevented. Seriously political persecution must be able to find asylum in Germany. To a humane treatment also means that asylum seekers can work here.”

        They want Germany’s immigration law to be like Canada’s. They must be Nazis. Everybody knows that Canadians are all Nazis too. Nazis, Nazis everywhere.

        • Jim__L

          I think I recall New Zealand has those sorts of restrictions on immigration too, as well as being seriously age-ist. Nazis everywhere indeed.

          • Ofer Imanuel

            I know that Australia does. Immigration based on the country need. Young and educated in a necessary discipline – in.

          • texasjimbo

            What a novel concept: immigration allowed based primarily on the welfare of the host country and its citizens rather than the welfare of the potential immigrant and their native country and/or some misplaced sense of guilt. Clearly a notion that could only be embraced by a Nazi.

          • Jim__L

            We were a nation of immigrants — when we had a frontier.

            Nowadays, what interest (or more to the point, whose interest) does massive immigration serve?

  • Andrew Allison

    “The far-right victories in Germany was powered by . . .”? Grammar aside, there were none, unless you count obtaining enough votes to enter Parliament.

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    I’m hoping the leftist big government European establishment gets thrown under the bus, just as it looks like the establishment is going to get thrown under the bus here in America. The European liberal center’s letting the Muslims immigrate into Europe, is just like opening your front door to let the wolves charge into the nursery and eat your children. It’s insane.

  • f1b0nacc1

    Tomorrow belongs to those who show up. The Eloi aren’t showing up….

    • Jim__L

      I was wondering when someone would get around to pointing out this simple truth.

      • f1b0nacc1

        When it comes to pointing out the obvious, I have a talent! (grin)

        • Jim__L

          You’d be surprised how often Captain Obvious could save the day.

          If anyone listens. =(

  • FluffyFooFoo

    European nation-states are fundamentally ethnocentric and are more readily socialist because of their ethnocentrism. Outsiders only succeed when they fully integrate culturally because it is impossible for them to do so ethnicity wise. Europeans aren’t going to ever want to socialistically give away to outsiders who aren’t also culturally integrated. The Latin phrase e pluribus unum isn’t a possible reality for Europe. Either the nation-states remain ethnocentric are they will no longer exist. More and more Europeans are recognizing themselves for what they are: Germans, Dutch, French, Spanish, Catalan, English, Scottish, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, etc. … and not multicultural world citizens.

  • Corlyss

    Where’ve they been for the last 22 years? I’ve been waiting for them to wake up to the fantasy the Lotus Eaters constructed for them in the post-war rush to redistribute wealth, cripple their defenses, and oh by the way open their borders to alien cultures in large numbers. I just never envisioned that the assault from alien cultures would be so violent or that the publics would be so supine in the face of cultural anemia.

    • Jim__L

      You forgot to list not having kids. Honestly — the norm of marriage as a monogamous heterosexual pairing where people start having kids in their 20’s, and have two or three kids, serves a compelling national interest.

  • klgmac

    Socialism always ends in poverty and misery. Social Democratic policies have killed the hope of the young by limiting opportunities. Capitalism and free markets brings prosperity to the greatest number of citizens.

  • Avinatan52

    one of the most powerful scenes in film history.

    • Jim__L

      Watch Victory at Sea or The Longest Day for other more powerful scenes.

  • PBM

    I have to contest one of the premises of the piece: “the crumbling liberal center of European politics.” There problem is there is no “liberal center of European politics.” The elites in the individual country governments and the EU have done this dialectical dance of “ever closer” authoritarianism for two decades now. The EU and the ECB effectively overthrew the elected governments of Greece and Italy to get what they wanted, and Merkel has governed as an authoritarian for years, labeling any opposition to her policies as “right-wing extremism” and placing political opponents of the regime under criminal investigation for exercising their rights. The same is true elsewhere in Europe (even Britain), where criticism of immigration policies can quickly lead to an arrest under “hate speech” laws or a police caution (as in the Netherlands recently). Any challenge to the elite consensus on immigration or the EU is treated as a potential crime or sign of political extremism. You can hardly blame the youth for deciding that, if they must have authoritarianism, they want an authoritarianism that works for them.

    • SineWaveII

      So given all of that who then are the real nazis? It seems to me that the real nazi HQ is in Brussels and the new nazi flag is blue with gold stars on it.

    • Jim__L

      I seem to recall that countries that lined up *against* the Nazis had strict anti-immigration laws.

      Has today’s chattering class lost the ability to tell Nazis from non-Nazis?

  • Mark In FLorida

    All the major German parties are to the left of our Democratic party, so it is misleading to call anything to the right of Merkel as “far right.” The news media does this here too. Anyone criticizing the establishment parties (Tea Party, Trump) are called racist, Nazi, white supremacist, when they have nothing to do with those things. This is media brainwashing.

    • Jim__L

      It’s certainly evidence that the media is calibrated on a European political spectrum.

      Maybe it’s a metric thing.

    • CapitalHawk

      It is 100% about shifting the “Overton window”. Our hosts on this website are engaging in it as well, by constantly referring to political parties that are slightly right of center as “far right”.

  • mhjhnsn

    I will observe that despite all the scare talk about Trump, fascism/Naziism, Bolshevism before them, and before that all the bloody revolutions as far back as we can see, have had youth at their cutting edge. The Sanders supporters in Chicago last week are much scarier and dangerous than middle-aged and elderly Trump supporters wearing stupid hats.

  • sez-who

    American WHATer? Thinker, it ain’t.

    The AfD, the party that DOESN’T want more anti-semetic, violent people coming in, is the party you compare to the Nazis? Really?

    The people most likely to be persecuted for the newly-created wrongthink crimes, THOSE are the people you compare to the Nazis? Really?

    O and by the way, your header? That should be ‘whom,’ not ‘who.’

    Try again. You’re journaling wrong.

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