Votes for the Swedish Democrats - Credit Dododod, CCSA 2.5

This is a bit of a Hail Mary pass as a piece of political analysis. Today’s presumed rise in the share of the vote going to the Swedish Democrats – the far right lot apparently – is caused not by immigration at all but by capitalism and the 2008 crash.

Err, yes, but that’s the Huffington Post line and they’re sticking to it:

Austerity And 2008’s Crash Boosted Sweden’s Far Right Long Before The Refugee Crisis

You do have to wonder where this sort of analysis is coming from really:

A new study challenges the conventional wisdom that nativist politicians are gaining ground simply because countries like Sweden now have more foreigners.

It’s odd really. Because every place that is having that rise in foreigners is having that surge in votes for people who don’t like foreigners. Geert Wilders in Holland isn’t doing well because they’ve cut child benefit after all. And it’s not obvious that the French government has even slowed the rise in spending upon anything yet Le Pen does rather well, doesn’t she?

The problem with the analysis is this. If anyone does lose to mss immigration then it’s those who were already bottom of the social and economic pile to start with. The research identifies the rise in Swedish Democrat support as coming from precisely those who would have been harmed by mass immigration. Yet they say that the cause of the rise in support is because of the trimming of the welfare state. Which will, obviously enough, also hit those already at the bottom of the economic and social pile.

This doesn’t really work all that well as an explanation, does it? For what we’ve got here is an agreement about the who just an assertion – with little to no proof – about the why.

And we do have that other evidence from elsewhere too. The rise in the vote for anti-immigrant parties does seem to rise in association with the rise in immigration. And not alongside the economic cycle of all of the differing examples we’ve got.

So, here’s our best guess at the true meaning of this research. It is assumed in progressive Swedish circles that immigration is a good thing. Thus any bad things that are happening concurrently must be because of something other than immigration. QED. Ourselves we’d prefer a little more examination of cause and effect than that but then we’re just appalling classical liberals to insist upon things like proof, aren’t we?

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Will HuffPost win the struggle with Salon to fit facts to the leftie world-view? “Every place that is having that rise in foreigners is having that surge in votes for people who don’t like foreigners because every such place is giving immigrants the implicit guarantee that they don’t have to assimilate or even pull their own weight. The assertion that the only reason to oppose immigration is class hatred of the beneficiaries is case-worker dogma.

Rhoda Klapp
Rhoda Klapp

The same phenomenon may be occurring in every country with immigration, but the reason is different in each case. Obviously.


Of course there are country-by-country differences, but I think a common factor is the admission of many people who won’t play by our rules. Our pie is being re-cut and slices are being given away. Our tax money, our jobs, our open spaces, our tranquility, our heritage of the Rule of Law. Nowhere, least of all America, does the reaction boil down to, “Ugh! Dark skin!” as charged.

Rhoda Klapp
Rhoda Klapp

The dreaded white backlash, so feared by our betters but so illusory.


The US exacerbates this with the Diversity Visa. “You are in because we didn’t used to admit enough of your kind; our bad.” Glad Trump has taken aim at this, but as usual when a law change is needed, cue the crickets.