Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Those who think that Europe is America’s past, think again.Europe matters to America. It matters more than ever before. Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy and the liberal special-interest groups that currently dominate Congress want to reshape America in Europe’s image: socialist, secularist and multicultural.

Americans who want to know what their country will be like 20 years from now if it follows the path its politicians want it to take, need only look at Europe. There, one can see what the undermining of Judeo-Christian values, higher taxes, onerous regulations and big, intrusive government will lead to: the collapse of a civilization.

First there was the rise of the welfare state, which led to the steady emergence of highly taxed, slow-moving and maladaptive economies that must support growing and eventually unsupportable demands by the citizens.

Second, there was secularism. People who have the state taking care of them from the cradle to the grave no longer need God. The welfare state also intentionally undermined religion to crush the spirit of freedom among its subjects. And it undermined demographics, because people who do not believe in God do not believe in the future and see children as a burden.

Third, a wholly new danger emerged, namely that of welfare immigration — the immigration of people, increasingly from cultures which have not been shaped by the basic forces of European civilization, who come purely for the purpose of claiming benefits.

Take Holland, for example, Europe’s equivalent of San Francisco. This is Pelosi Land. The Dutch are pampered by an extensive welfare system. They were the first in Europe to legalize abortion, euthanasia and homosexual “marriage.” Today, Islam is filling the void that was left when the Dutch created a religious vacuum in the heart of their culture. There are already 1 million Muslims in the Netherlands out of a total population of 16 million. Their number is rising fast because the Muslims are fecund while the secularist Dutch have hardly any offspring.

The native Dutch are moving out. Since 2004, more indigenous Dutchmen have emigrated each year than immigrants have moved in. People who have lost faith in God do not fight. They run. Since they do not believe in life after death, this life is the only thing they have to lose. One emigrant Dutchman, a homosexual author who lives in Brussels, writes: “I am not a warrior. I do not fight for freedom. I am only good at enjoying it.” This mentality has affected the whole of Western Europe. A young German woman recently said that it is “better to let yourself be raped than risk injuries while resisting, better to avoid fighting than risk death.” Europe has chosen the path of submission. Islamization is not the cause but the consequence of the collapse of Europe. The very word Islam means “submission.” Many Europeans have submitted already. In that sense, they have already become Muslims.

At the root of the collapse of Western Europe’s civilization is the self-inflicted disease of welfarism. It saps people of the strength to take care of themselves, to stand up for their rights, to fight for their freedoms. And yet, while the European example is there for all to see, Mrs. Pelosi’s Congress wants to introduce the same in America.

Today, the Europeans are creating a supranational welfare system, the European Union (EU). After having sacrificed their liberties for cradle-to-grave security, they are now sacrificing their centuries-old nation-states. Some Americans think that the EU is a kind of United States of Europe. They are wrong. While the U.S. Constitution protects the liberties of the people, the EU constitution abolishes them. While the U.S. Constitution recognizes that there is an authority higher than the state — God — the EU constitution deliberately refrains from mentioning God.

On Jan. 16, Europe’s Nancy Pelosi — the newly elected speaker of the European Parliament, a German Christian-Democrat called Hans-Gert Poettering — announced that he will not press for a reference to God in the EU constitution because he wants to be a “fair and objective” speaker.

Europe’s contemporary culture is one of “repudiation,” a culture based on negatives for every aspect of the traditional European heritage (Christianity, monogamous marriage, national loyalty, monocultural identity and so on). This is the culture that Mrs. Pelosi wants to introduce in America. But look at what Europe has become. Its refusal to uphold the old forms of moral and civil order make it impossible to curb the welfare state, to control immigration, to maintain order in the cities. If America follows Mrs. Pelosi’s lead, this is what it will get. Welcome to the future, look at Europe.

Paul Belien is editor of the Brussels Journal and an adjunct fellow of the Hudson Institute.

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