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What say ye, Fukuyama?

Jean-Marie Le Pen is not President of France and is unlikely to become President of France but I don’t think that it is an exaggeration to say that his success in the first round of the presidential elections is already sending shockwaves across Europe and maybe the wider world.

Why? Anyone who has been following events in Europe over recent months cannot help but have noticed Nationalist politicians of the Le Pen variety notching up stunning electoral success all over the continent, including Holland, Denmark, Austria and Italy. The success of Le Pen, in this context, is not so much an eruption as part of an ongoing pattern. Something is radically changing in Europe and the ruling jacobin elites have no idea how to respond much less stop it. They are worried. They are right to be.

The settlement of post-war Europe was a centrist consensus built around an all-encompassing welfare state where high taxes and generous benefits were seen as a type of ‘enlightened’ self-interest; people happily paid into the system to help their less fortunate neighbours and friends in the sure and certain knowledge that the system would care equally well for them as and when the time came. But, whatever we say about the inquities of tribalism, the fact appears that those same people were less enthusiatic about providing such bounty to strangers from faraway lands with whom they felt no affinity or kinship. Is this an admission of racism? Well, yes, it most certainly is. Why try to invent anaesthetising euphamisms for it?

The massive third world immigration into Europe in the last twenty years or so has seen the system stretched to breaking point resulting in a surly, resentful and thoroughly balkanised polity that is starting to express itself through people like Le Pen in France and Pym Forytun in Holland. The ossified Eurocrats are starting to reap what they have so blithely sewn.

But it isn’t just the Napoleonic welfare-state which is to blame. The post-war political class was shot through with post-colonial guilt and haunted by the horrors of Nazi Germany to the extent where they saw ‘European culture’ as something which had to be curbed, repressed and, preferably, phased out. Europeans were required to demonstrate open-ended ‘tolerance’ while immigrant communities were required to do quite the opposite. It was an appallingly misconceived and damaging bit of social engineering that may yet have terrible reprecussions.

There are those who will point to 9/11 as a turning point but that would not be entirely true. These tensions have been fomenting in Europe for years. What may be true is that both 9/11 and the Israel-Palestinian conflict have further radicalised the large Muslim minorities in much of Europe, particularly in France and Holland. How many Europeans have visualised, rightly or wrongly, homicide bombers devastating the pavement cafes of Paris or Amsterdam and shuddered? Failing to find comfort in their mealy-mouthed and morally relative incumbents, have they turned to other sources for their salvation?

Of course, this could all just be a protest vote rather than a long-term trend but the former sometimes has a knack of of morphing into the latter even if nobody meant it to. I have a sense that the world is shifting in tectonic ways and moving the plates of history around under our feet.

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