Thursday, May 22, 2014

In the last part of the book he moves beyond the currently feasible to ask questions about community from a more fundamental perspective. He argues that democratic values of freedom and equality ultimately entail a commitment to open borders marriages. Only in a world of open borders free love, he contends, will we live up to our most basic principles.
Immigration: liability or asset?

Many people, asked whether immigration is a liability or an asset, will interpret the question in a straightforwardly economic way. They will wonder what the economic facts are, and whether immigration tends to boost national prosperity or whether it imposes unacceptable costs on that stock character from political rhetoric, “the taxpayer”. Those broadly in favour of immigration, if they suspect the economic facts may be against them, will then sing the benefits of cultural diversity and ethnic cuisine. Those against it will warn darkly of the low tolerance of voters for too much change and point to actual or imagined popular anxieties about the disappearance of the familiar.

I have no special expertise on the economic questions and I am also somewhat sceptical about how far it is a legitimate goal of public policy to promote or defend private tastes and preferences about cookery, diversity or anything else, particularly if doing so comes at the expense of the rights of others.
Bertram a year ago on the same topic.

Quiggin (see previous post)
I don’t have a problem with people finding meaning in an experience they call God, or if they find it in Mozart. But if they find it in cooking, I’m cool with that too.
I didn't catch the matching food references right off.

Lakoff 's hyperbole: "Oxford philosophy is killing the world".  Certainly it's not helping.


More contradictions. I forgot about this. Bertram in 2007 [linked by me in 2009]
SoH regret that the things they value about England are being squeezed out by a crass commercialism (partly of US origin, partly not). They also regret that English people are ignorant of their own folk traditions. This is also true though a good deal (though not all) of the loss happened with 19th C industrialization and a good deal (though not all) of the “folk tradition” is a manufactured response to the same. Lots of stuff that strikes a chord there – loss of authenticity, commodification etc etc.

Lots of people who also feel, with them, the loss of that sense of place and belonging also (unlike them) blame their own anomie, alienation, etc on immigrants, the EU and so on.

A rallying cry to defend English culture attracts a lot of the same people, unfortunately.

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