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March 16, 2013



"It is that whilst we might not be able to prove philosophically that liberal values are superior, there seems to be intercultural subjective agreement that they are."

I think this overstates how rational people are in making their decisions. People move to countries that have profited from liberalism but that does not mean that they appreciate that their better features are consequences of liberalism. See, for example, Islamists who enjoy the benefits of free expression in holding forth on how apostates and blasphemers should be executed.


Few people want to move to a country where it is unpleasant to live.

So as Authoritarianism and Austerity increasingly take hold in the UK, we should see migration to the UK increasingly fall.

Gives a new meaning to Moody's recent downgrade to AA status doesn't it?


"...because these are pretty much the only ways of becoming rich..."

Apologies for the multiple comments - which always feels like the online equivalent of the person who will say something, wait for you to begin responding and then launch into another thought - but Singapore is surely evidence that market-based countries can grow rich while remaining authoritarian.


It is usually people with conservative/individual based ideologies who oppose environmental regulations and other measures to reduce climate change/pollution. Those people are effectively throwing millions into "meat grinders" therefor I find Norms response highly ironic.


Human rights must have taken a nosedive in Ireland in the last few years.


You say "liberalism leads to wealth", but the opposite is also true -- wealth leads to liberalism. For instance, the English colonies in North America were wealthy even before the revolution. The USA prospered despite slavery and Jim Crow, and only abolished those institutions as it got more wealthy. Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan all became pretty wealthy under authoritarian regimes.

Another issue is that having stable, liberal institutions is not necessarily the same as liberal values of the population. For instance, I doubt that many people migrated to Nazi-occupied France.

Similarly, each of these countries has a history. The values of your countrymen may not be as relevant as the history of being invaded and pillaged by outsiders --- which is another big difference between the countries that people migrate between.


Liberalism is a reactionary 19th century ideology. We need socialist values. The only reason people don't migrate to countries with those values is that there aren't any yet.


Part of the problem in the Paul/Norm discussion is that Norm immediately leaps to (or gropes for) an extreme example and/or universal moral principle.

Reality is that our societies of laws often value the collective over the individual, which suggests it's all about a balance - and that you could have other equally valid balance points, none of which are illuminated by Norm's leap to an unbalanced example.

Churm Rincewind

"...people don't migrate towards countries with liberal values but towards rich ones..."

Yes, that's what the evidence tells us.

"...the figures show a clear fact. People of all cultures seem to prefer to live under liberal values than not.."

No, the evidence tells us that people of all cultures seem to prefer to live in rich countries - no more and no less.

john b

The popularity of the US and Singapore as destinations for European migrants, despite the fact that both countries are far less liberal than any western European nation, has to sit alongside the Gulf countries as evidence supporting the "rich" over "liberal" hypothesis.


Our fondness for supporting Religious Dictatorships like Saudi Arabia might cast doubt on our Liberal values as well. Arms dealer in chief Cameron finds no problem selling weapons to loonies if the customer can pay lots.

Many of the people who would like to come to the UK or stay as they are persecuted in their native country are not let in or expelled. Also undermining our Liberal cred.

It is not possible to disentangle the reasons for migration; one is the globalisation of the economy. Foreign travel and the Internet increase the likelihood of migration and settlement and people marrying citizens of other countries. It is the sun that attracts Brits to Spain not the Spanish Constitution of 1978 and its admirable provisions for the Parliamentary system and Devolution of state power.

Nigel Farage has a German wife. How he got them to let him enter Germany I do not know. He sounds like the sort of character to be kept out of the Heimat. But thats modern society for you. Every one having sex and getting married with Krouts. But don't tell the UKIP voters they may start to get suspicious about Farage.

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